Petflair

Meet Brittany from Petflair! 

Where did the idea for Petflair originate from?

One of the co-founders Tyler Martin operates a swimwear label called Delfina Sport and he gifted his friend a swimsuit with her dog printed on it as a joke.

She ended up loving it and wearing the swimsuit every chance she had!

After that, Tyler felt excited about the idea of launching this project and approached Charlie Gearside, who is a guru of all things tech, to join the team. 

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The boys then approached me about getting involved, as I am probably one of the biggest pet lovers they know – and I was all hands in as soon as I heard about their idea!

To date, we have had such a great time combining all of our skills together to help raise awareness about pet adoption, all whilst selling custom-made products that pet owners are just loving! 

Why did you specifically choose to print on towels and bathers?

We are based in Australia and a majority of our time is spent on the beach, so it just seemed appropriate!

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Why do you think so many pet owners are now investing in products such as this?

Pet owners share a wonderful companionship and relationship with their pets.

You can always rely on a pet to be there for you and humans are acknowledging this loyalty by showing off their pets every chance they can get.

More and more young couples are even opting to adopt a pet before raising a child!

Plus, there is nothing on this Earth cuter than your own pet, so why wouldn’t you want their image printed on a product which you can show off  😉 

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Is there a specific group of people who Petflair products are targeted at?

Predominately pet owners and lovers. But we also target our products towards anybody who feels like a change needs to be implemented in the pet industry.

We encourage all customers to upload a picture of their purchase online with the hashtags #PoundPaws and #AdoptDontShop, as we want to raise awareness about this important issue.

If we can spread this powerful message about adopting in a fun and feel good way then we have succeeded!

Although the message may not be relevant to viewers and readers right now, in the future when they go down the path of wanting a pet, we hope they are well-educated enough to choose to #AdoptDontShop

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What do you think it means to be a pet owner?

There is so much to take into consideration before choosing to commit to a pet.

It is important that new pet owners understand that pets are a 10-15 year commitment.

They are not gifts that you can exchange on Valentines Day and they are most importantly, not a ‘fad’ which you purchase because “everybody else has one”.

They will tap into your savings, leave fur on your clothes and even eat out of your trash, but you will love them regardless, because they are a part of your life!

Part of my charity, Pound Paws‘, key message is to educate people about responsible pet ownership, as one of the main reasons for pets ending up in the pound is because owners didn’t realise how much of a commitment they are. 

Being a pet owner, and more importantly, being a responsible pet owner, means giving your pet unconditional love and treating them with lots of respect, like you would any other member of your family. 

What is your biggest achievement to date?

My biggest achievement to date would have to be launching my charity Pound Paws in 2014.

It is a dream to wake up each morning and work on something I feel so passionate about.

And nothing makes me happier then successfully re-homing pets, and then hearing about their ‘Happily Fur-ever After Story’.

Find out more about Petflair at https://petflair.co/

Autumn Winter Bunny

Meet Autumn and Winter.

What do Autumn and Winter mean to you?

Autumn and Winter mean the world to me. I couldn’t imagine my life without them!
 

Why did you choose those names?

I chose the names Autumn and Winter for my pets because they are my two favourite seasons.

What do you think it means to be a pet owner?

In my opinion, being a pet owner means caring and loving for an animal and bringing them into your home. It also means making that animal a part of your family and incorporating them into your everyday life.
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What is involved in caring for bunnies?

Bunnies are very hard pets to take care of, but are definitely worth it.
Some of my daily tasks include cleaning their litter pan, restocking hay, taking the bunnies out to play, refilling their water and finding fresh veggies for them to eat.
I also groom them and trim their nails.
But the best part of my day is definitely when I come home to two super energetic bunnies who are ready to cuddle and play. 

What is the cheekiest thing they have ever done?

The cheekiest thing Autumn has ever done was sneaking off into the hay bin while I was filling up her water.
And the cheekiest thing Winter continues to do is when I feed her food she really wants, she goes up on her two back paws, raises her two front paws, and slaps the food right out of my hands and chows it down!
What silly bunnies!

What is your favourite feature on Petbar?

My favourite feature on Petbar (if I only had to pick one) would be the ability to create  different profiles for each bunny.
I recommend Petbar to all pet owners and pet lovers out there because it is a unique platform where you can interact and communicate with all of your pet friends!
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Charlie Little Bear

Meet Charlie. 

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What does Charlie mean to you?

I love Charlie! He is just so sweet and gentle and I couldn’t imagine my life without him. He means the absoloute world to me. 

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What opportunities have arisen since creating a social media account for Charlie?

Plenty of opportunities indeed! Charlie is so loved and supported by his fur-friends and I get messages from people all over the world saying how much they love Charlie.
It’s so heart warming to know that and to receive that online support!

 

If you could ask Charlie one question, what would it be and why?

This is a really fun question!

To be honest I have never thought of it, but I would probably ask him if he’s a happy cat and if he loves living with our family.  

 

 

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What is the silliest thing he has ever done?

He’s totally obsessed with paper balls… like really in love!

He turns into a lion if you don’t give him a paper ball 😂

What is your favourite feature on Petbar?

I love knowing that I am part of a community of fellow pet lovers, who all have so many amazing and inspirational stories.  


What do you think it means to be a pet owner?

Being a pet owner means having the responsibility of taking care of your pet, just like you would look after a child. You are responsible for giving your pet love, care and support whether it be emotionally, medically or physically.
After all, they are our best fur-friends!

 

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Clumsy the Duck

Meet Clumsy. 

What do you love most about Clumsy?

What I love most about Clumsy is that she has a lot of personality.
She’s goofy, cute, funny and shows us how much she loves us with hugs and cuddles.

Why did you choose that name?

I chose the name Clumsy because when she was a baby she would always trip on her own feet every time she ran!

She would somehow always fall over, so she was pretty clumsy.

Have you always been a duck owner?

Clumsy is the first duck I have ever bought and cared for.
I had never thought about being a duck owner until I got her, and it’s the best thing to ever happen to me.

What is involved in caring for a duck?

A lot of patience, care, love, and hard work. 
It’s like having a child, so you need to be prepared! 

Why did you start a social media account for Clumbsy?

I started a social media account for Clumsy because I wanted to show everyone why she makes me happy and how adorable she is!

What is your favourite thing about Petbar? 

My favourite thing about Petbar is that they understand that your pet is part of your family.
You can talk to other users, and even look at pictures of other pets too, which I love.
I think that every pet owner should get the Petbar app and check it out!

What do you think it means to be a pet owner?

It means that you have multiple responsibilities that you don’t really think of as responsibilities.
You think of them as caring for someone you love and your best friend, and it changes your life in the best way possible. 
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Epona Horses

Meet Anita and Hansa

What does Hansa mean to you?

Hansa is one of the best things that has happened to me. She has taught me so much.

Thanks to her I have learnt patience and determination, because sometimes horse training is like watching grass grow.

You need to take small baby steps until you are proficient and receive the results you set out to achieve.

You also need to be able to read a horses body language to fully understand how to support them in the learning process.

It is a never-ending learning curve which enables you to grow with your horse.

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Why did you decide to buy a horse?

I had always wanted to own a horse ever since I was a child.

Because I wasn’t able to do that when I was younger, I decided that when I was an adult and started to earn my own money, I’d give it a try.

So I started attending horse riding classes.

Although I enjoyed riding, I didn’t really respond well to the way I was taught to do this in class.

I felt like I wanted to experiment with much more than just regular horse riding in the arena.

During that time (approximately 15 years ago) a new trend was emerging that is best described as ‘natural horsemanship‘, which is essentially a less restrictive training regime that is founded on building a solid relationship and communication skills with your animal.

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really wanted to experiment with this method and technique, but it wasn’t possible with a rental horse from a sports stable.

Traditional horsemen were also very sceptical about this new horse training approach that had newly emerged.

So, I decided that I needed to buy a horse to properly learn about horse psychology and to conduct my own one-on-one training the way I wanted to.

Long story short, I bought Hansa and we have been together for 14 years ever since.

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Do you ride competitively?

No, I don’t ride competitively.

Partly because my horse has health issues that doesn’t allow her to be put in physically demanding situations.

I’m also not really interested in the competitions that are available in Latvia, which is where I am from.

The two main disciplines in competitive horse riding are dressage and jumping. But I am not interested in either of them.

However, I am considering entering my horse into agility competitions that are available online. I think it would be a fun new experience for Hansa and I.

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What is something unique and distinctive about Hansa?

Initially when I bought her, she was very reluctant when it came to trusting people and didn’t feel comfortable and safe in her own environment.

She was actually called crazy because of her uncontrollable and impulsive behaviour.

Her previous owners told me that we would never be able to go on a trail ride together because of her behaviour.

However, after some training and a little love and care, I now even let my seven-year-old child ride her.

And, of course, we go on trail rides together too.

She has become so calm, trusting and reliable thanks to the correct training and proper communication, which are essential when building a relationship with a pet.

In my opinion, her uniqueness is the ability to overcome her fears and willingness to learn and trust me.

It’s very touching to watch how she is trying, learning and adapting to new things and how she interacts with new obstacles despite her fears and initial scepticism.

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What do you love most about her?

Our connection.

The greatest moments are when I know we are having a mental connection and understand each other without words or the help of equipment.

And we can interact and communicate in liberty. It feels so calming and therapeutic, almost like meditation. 

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It is a great responsibility because I am fully in charge for my horse’s wellbeing both physically and mentally.

I believe that horses must be given four freedoms.

Firstly, the freedom to have unlimited access to forage and water.

Secondly, to move in a sufficient and large open space.

Thirdly, to interact with their horse-friends in that space.

And lastly, the freedom from pain.

My responsibility as a horse owner is to give her these four freedoms and my obligation as a pet owner is to understand horse psychology.

I need to find the best ways to gently communicate with her in a way she will be most responsive, and in a format she will understand, which shows mutual love and respect.

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Follow EponaHorses on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/eponahorses/   

Hound Hub Australia

From personalised products to quarterly donations at different animal rescues, HoundHub is the perfect example of how to manage your business whilst still being involved and making a difference in the world of pets. 

What was your inspiration for Hound Hub?

My inspiration for Hound Hub started when my partner and I adopted our first Greyhound Nero.

Going through the process of adopting Nero opened my eyes up to how much work was involved by the rescue group and what a great job they were doing.

From that moment I knew that I wanted to find a way to give back and help raise money for a Greyhound Rescue Group here in Perth.

I decided that I would create some metal Greyhound silhouette key rings and sell them with all profits going to that particular rescue group.

I received a lot of good feedback and decided to take the leap and create a business based around personalised items that would also give back to a selected group each quarter.

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How do you make sure each item is personalised?

Every personalised item is created directly from a photo of a pets face.

I then draw these up via our software and capture each unique marking as close as possible.

Once our drawings are approved I then have them made into key rings, magnets and brooches in either plywood or acrylic.

There is a lot of time and care involved when making these items, as I want them to be perfect for each customer.

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What is the best part of your job?

That would have to be when I open an email and see the adorable pets that I get to use to create a personalised item!

I also love hearing about each individual pet’s backstory and why the item that is being ordered is so special to my customer.

I also often create items for someone whose pet has passed away and I find it incredibly rewarding being able to provide them with something that they can carry with them every day.

There are so many favourite parts about my job and these are just a couple. 

The list could go on and on!

How do you ensure Hound Hub stands out from other similar businesses?

I take pride in Hound Hub being a very personable business.

I like to treat each customer with the same amount of respect and service I would expect.

I believe this is why we have customers who return and spread the word of what we do.

Our products are one of a kind and each item drawn represents the personality of the pet we are inspired by. 

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What does being a pet owner mean to you?

To me it means that even when you’re at your worst, you have a best friend who’s there for you unconditionally and brightens up your day!

It also makes you responsible for more than just yourself.

I have two hounds who need me just as much as I need them.

If anything, my boys have taught me how to take time out to appreciate the little things in life such as smelling the roses or in their case, the light poles!

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How do you work towards making a difference in the pet world?

With every purchase from Hound Hub, whether it be a key ring or our treats, a percentage of our profits go to an allocated rescue group for the quarter.

I also try my hardest to help out and volunteer with that group during the time we support them.

I have even done a kennel sleep out!

I think exposing the great work these rescue groups do is so important as well as being able to show people the benefits of adopting or fostering an animal. 

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Melody Penelope

Meet Kemo, Dutch and Ripley. 

Three rescue Sphynx cats. 

Caution – they post nudes.

Why did you decide to start a social media account called @MelodyPenelope?

I adopted my first sphynx, Kemo, a couple of months after moving to Los Angeles.
Whenever I would go home to visit, everyone would ask about her, so I decided to start an Instagram account to share pictures of her with my family and friends. 
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What has the process been like?

Almost immediately after creating @melodypenelope I started getting attention and questions from people who had never seen a hairless cat before.
The account quickly grew from family and friends to what it is now.
Several of our followers have become real friends to us as well.

What does being a pet owner mean to you? 

Bringing a pet into your home is a life-long commitment that means so much more than just buying a cute puppy or kitty.
Animals rely on us not just for food and water, but for love and attention as well.
They provide more loyalty and unconditional love than you could ever imagine, and they deserve the same in return.
If you are ready to adopt, remember, you are bringing home another family member. 
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What is it like having three cats at home?

Kemo, Dutch, and Ripley bring so much joy, laughter, and love to our home.
Sphynx are a very social breed of cat and I always have at least one in physical contact with me at all times.
Sometimes I end up bringing one to work with me because it’s so hard to leave them behind! 
But three cats also means a lot more kitty poo and a lot less room in bed at night!

Tell us a little bit about why you decided to adopt them?

When I moved to LA I knew I wanted to adopt a Sphynx.
After several months of contacting shelters and rescue organizations, we found a nine-month-old kitten who had been relinquished by her former family because they weren’t able to provide her with the care she needed.
She came home with us the day after Christmas, underweight, and extremely timid.
But with a little time, and a lot of love, she showed us what a sweet and silly girl she was.
We named her Kemosabe, which means faithful friend. 
Then, last September, a former college professor called me and asked if I would be willing to take in his one-year-old twins.
I never expected to have three cats, but after meeting Dutch and Ripley there was no way we could say no to them.
Their personalities fit in perfectly with our family’s.
Ripley keeps Kemo active, and Dutch has a major crush on our dog Bailey.
Now, I can’t imagine NOT having three cats!
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Maple.theBasset

Meet Maple.

Why did you decide to start a social media account for Maple?

I just knew I wanted to have an account for Maple as soon as we adopted her! 
It is the perfect way to document her life and have a place to keep all her best photos in one spot.
I also knew that it would be a great way for me to get advice from other dog parents.
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What opportunities have arisen since?

Maple has modelled leashes and bow ties, been a brand ambassador for an Etsy shop, and even competed in a contest during Christmas where she won a $25 gift card.
And you can’t forget about all the amazing friendships we’ve made! 
These dog parents can be hardcore but if anything happens to Maple I can post about it online and get some advice, or learn about a similar situation from other Basset Hound owners. 
It has been so cool to connect with dogs from Ohio all the way to Australia!
And the photos people post are truly amazing.
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What differentiates your account from other dog accounts?

I like to post in ‘Maple’s voice’ and write what I think she would be saying, thinking and feeling.
I think that adds a fun perspective to the whole experience and makes things not-so-serious!
She does the cutest things and purposely models for me so I can capture the moment.
Getting the iPhone X has really stepped up our photo game too.

What does Maple mean to you?

Maple is my best friend!
I have always loved Basset Hounds and grew up with them my whole life.
After I graduated from College, I needed a hobby and adjusting to post-grad life in an unfamiliar city with no family around me was difficult!
I worked night shift at my job and was lonely during the day (when I wasn’t sleeping).
And my boyfriend traveled a lot so I needed another friend to make our house feel a little less empty.
That was where Miss Maple came along.
She gave me a purpose and my goal was to be the best dang dog mum around.
Now I couldn’t imagine my life without her!
So overall, she makes life more fun.

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Describe what you think it means to be a pet owner.

Being a pet owner is so extremely important. A dog is a member of the family.
I make sure Maple has a comfy bed to sleep in, a backyard to run around in and she gets one long walk a day and endless games of fetch to maintain her energy.
We got her professionally trained so she would be well-behaved around people and other dogs. 
And she is a fan favourite with our family and friends and we are proud to say that she is ours!
A pet owner has the responsibility of caring for another life.
I was nervous that I wouldn’t be good at it, but you just learn what your pets needs are and you do what you have to do. 
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What is the story behind adopting Maple and naming her?

I was on the hunt for a Basset Hound puppy and since I was living in an apartment at the time, I got turned down from a dozen different rescue shelters!
I really wanted to have a rescue (we rescued my family pet years ago) but since I didn’t have a fenced in yard, I kept getting rejected.
I was getting desperate and found an ad on Craigslist for a female Basset Hound puppy.
I text the number and that was that! No questions asked,  I chose my puppy, paid my security deposit and was told that I could pick her up in six weeks time.
My boyfriend and I drove to the middle of nowhere, three hours away from home and met the amazing family that bred her. And they handed her over straight away and the rest is history!
In terms of her name, I actually dreamed it! 
I had a list of about ten names that I kept voting on and one night I dreamt that her name was Maple. I think it had something to do with the maple syrup I ate with my waffles that morning. 
Maple reminded me of a pretty, fall color and I knew I would be adopting her in early Fall!
It also just so happened that her coat turned from black to a “maple-y” colour after we bought her, so the name was perfect!
Except now, some people think I’m saying “Meatball” instead of “Maple”. 😂 

What is the silliest thing she has ever done?

Maple is the silliest dog in the world so it’s hard to pick just one thing that she does!
Some of our favorites include her jumping up to put her front paws on the bay window. She then whips her head back and looks at us until one of us helps lift her up.
She also enjoys sprawling out in bed and being the middle spoon between the two of us.
She allows us to dress her up and even wore a pirates outfit for Halloween!
But one of our favorite silly moments is when she holds a peanut butter jar between her paws like a human and licks it until she gets the last drop!
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Alcequine

Meet Al. 

What made you decide to buy both a horse and a cat?

I’ve always grown up being surrounded by animals.
I had two Labrador’s and three cats (one being my current cat Chip) when I was younger.
I’ve had Chip since he was a little kitten and decided to take him with me when I moved to Oklahoma after graduating high school. My horse however, is kind of a different story.
I started riding when I was 10-years-old and instantly fell in love.
I got out of it for a while and took up volleyball instead, which I stopped doing in March 2017.
After that, I took up riding again and started working at a show barn (awful experience) where I learnt about para-dressage, which is what I do now.
So I started travelling to Texas to train with horses, and ended up moving there to train full-time. I also started leasing Cappi, who is the horse that I currently ride.
In addition to that, I have a foal that will be trained for my specific needs once he’s all grown up.
Eventually, once I move on from Cappi I hope to get a horse of my own that’s not a baby, so I can grow with him/her. 
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Do you ride horses competitively?

I do ride horses competitively – I’m actually trying to make it to the Paralympics!
I know it’s going to be a long shot getting there, but I’m super excited for the journey and everything that I’ll learn along the way. 

Do both pets get along with each other?

Both pets have never actually met each other, because I would never dream about taking Chip to the barn as he probably wouldn’t want to come back home after that!
Chip loves being outside and hunting, but I’m not sure how he’d go around big animals.
And Cappi is super great with dogs since there are always a ton around at the barn.

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Do you have a favourite? 

I have a favorite at different times!
I love being at the barn and I go almost everyday to spend time with Cappi and ride.
It’s one of my happy places and being there just makes me motivated to do my best and continue working hard to achieve my goals.
But Chip is awesome when I’m at home! Our favourite past time is sleeping or binge watching a TV show together. 
He curls up with me on the couch and watches whatever I’m watching, and he’s super cute when it’s bedtime because he sleeps right next to me (or on me) all night. 
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What does being a pet owner mean to you?

Being a pet owner means that you have someone to care of.
This little ball of fluff (or 1200 lbs of fluff) depends on you, loves you and you get the honour of being able to give them the best life possible.
I’m always showering both my pets with treats, toys and gear and it just makes me so happy! I could never imagine my life without animals and don’t know how people can live without them! 
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Phoebe.Pom

Meet Phoebe. 

What does Phoebe mean to you?

Phoebe is my life, my world.
She’s such a smart pup! She amazes me every time we are together.

Why did you decide to adopt a dog?

Honestly, I had always wanted a dog but was never ready for that kind of commitment. But one day my mum and I visited the Inland Valley Humane society just to check it out.
We walked down the first line of kennels before laying eyes on the fluffiest little pooch!
Phoebe was so excited to see us and gave us a lot more attention than a lot of other people who were interested in her.
We were instantly in love and had to get her straight away!

What does it mean to be a pet owner?

Being a pet owner means giving your pet the greatest life possible.
Having an animal to share memories with and to take care of is one of the best privileges a human can have!
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What is the silliest thing she has ever done?

Phoebe is a pretty silly pup!
The silliest thing she has done/ still does is after she’s done taking a bath (she absolutely despises water) she goes crazy and runs around the house immediately after I towel dry her!
She starts running up and down our hallway and rolls all over the carpet. 

If you could ask Phoebe one question, what would it be and why?

One question I would ask Phoebe is “why do you destroy the thing’s you love?”
It might seem like a weird question, but it’s true. She destroys everything! From her favorite toy, her bed to her tote carrier… she rips it all!
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If you could be any pet, what would you be and why?

If I could be any pet I would be a… you guessed it! A dog! But not just any dog.
I would be a Pomeranian because I think they’re adorable, which is probably why I think my dog is the cutest dog in the world.

Why did you decide to start a social media account for Phoebe and what has the experience been like so far?

The main reason I opened up an account for Phoebe is because I noticed an abundance of pet accounts online.
I decided Phoebe would be a perfect pup to have an account for, because she is so adorable and full of life, and so far everything has been amazing.
The pet ‘community’ is great and you get to meet lots of new and different kinds of people – and their animals of course!

Dogfather and Co.

Meet Kristina – the Director of Operations and Senior Buyer at Dogfather and Co. 

Why did you choose the name Dogfather and Co.?

The company was founded by a couple who considered themselves to be the ‘dogfathers’. And then the business was purchased in 2008 by the current owner Nataly, who decided to keep the name. 

You’ve cared for street dogs in India. Tell us a little bit about what that experience was like. 

Caring for street dogs in India was tough.
It certainly was not an experience for the faint hearted. It was definitely an experience of a lifetime, and I learnt a lot about dog behaviour and psychology, as I was able to observe and work with dogs that live on their own without the interference of humans. 

Do you think the approaches used by holistic veterinarians work?

Holistic veterinarians are unfortunately extremely difficult to find here in Ontario. They not only go through vet school, like all other vets, but they also do years of schooling afterwards, usually at human holistic schools since there aren’t many available for animals.
Their approach is the only one I believe in, which is that the number one thing that leads to illness and disease is a bad diet and lifestyle.
Diseases can be significantly avoided or lessened with a change of diet and lifestyle alone. That goes for both humans and animals.

How do you ensure the services you offer at Dogfather are unique and one of a kind in such a competitive market space?

With the help of our passionate staff members we are constantly brainstorming and researching new products and services on the market.
Since we only hire staff who are completely dedicated to helping dogs live better lives, we feel that this gives us an edge over other companies who offer similar services.

From ordering pupcakes to one-on-one dog fittings, where do you get your ideas from, and what is next for Dogfather?

We have lots of ideas in the pipeline at the moment. With our second location opening soon, we will have more space to provide more innovative services and products. We are very excited to be announcing the launch of this new store in 2018.

What has changed within your business since you expanded by including a cafe and grooming facility?

The cafe and grooming facility came about because we want to provide all the services that one would need for their dog in one space.
While we are a tiny shop, we do try very hard to provide as many services and products that we possibly can.
Now that we’ve outgrown our tiny space, we have finally found a second location to help serve our customers needs better.

The products you sell in your boutique are very unique. How have you sourced these products and what made you decide to sell such a wide, creative range of dog products?

Some of these are our trade secrets, however, what I can tell you is that we won’t put anything on our shelves that we haven’t tested on our own dogs. Anything that we wouldn’t give to our own dogs, or that our dogs will not eat, does not make it to our store.
 

How do you ensure your products/ services appeal to a Canadian market?

We are always listening to what our customers have to say. Our customers are the most important part of our business.
If they recommend a product or a service, we look into it. If we believe it’s a product or service that the majority of our clients would also appreciate, we recommend it, or bring it in.

Tell us a little bit about K9 cafe and what makes it special? 

The K9 came about because of the strict regulations and rules around the prohibition of having dogs in restaurants and cafes in Toronto.
This can be extremely frustrating especially in Summer, when one wants to sit outside with their dog and have a coffee.
People can’t even sit on venue patios with their dog. So since we have a small patio out back, we decided to donate that space to our clients.
They can go get a coffee at any cafe in our neighbourhood and bring it back to our patio. They can also buy a treat for their dog to keep them satisfied and busy so the owner can relax, and enjoy the weather.
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Leo Max Adventures

Meet Leo and Max.

How much do Leo and Max mean to you?

Leo and Max mean the world to me.
They have become apart of my everyday life and there is no way I could picture my life without them.

Why did you decide to adopt them?

We decided to adopt Leo because I was feeling homesick, sad and lonely due to my big move from California to Arlington, Virginia.
One random day we entered a local Petsmart centre and found Leo at the Lost Dog and Cat Rescue.
He would not leave our side and I instantly knew he was the dog for us.
We took him home that very day and he changed our life completely.
After four months of Leo’s adoption we decided that he needed a brother! So we chose to look into another local shelter which is how we found Max.
Max was the perfect little puppy and we knew they would both get along and hit it off instantly. It was the best decision we ever made as they are now inseparable and each others best friends. 

Do you have a favourite? 

I love Leo and Max equally but Leo is definitely a mummy’s boy and Max adores his daddy!

Is it difficult owning and caring for two dogs?

At first it was difficult managing both, as Max was only five-months-old and was still in his puppy stage when we adopted Leo.
From my personal experience, I think that having two dogs alleviates a feeling of guilt especially when we are both away from home for a long period of time during the day.
There is a level of comfort we have knowing that they are both home keeping each other occupied. So overall, I don’t really find it difficult anymore.
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What is the best thing about being a pet owner?

I think the best part about being a pet owner is coming home to animals who give you an immense amount of unconditional love.
Dogs are the most loving, protecting and valued friends!
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Tell us a little bit about adopting Leo from Puerto Rico?

Leo was brought to Arlington, Virginia by the Lost Dog and Cat Rescue.
They did not have much background information on him but they knew he had been a street dog for a while.
I am so glad we had the pleasure of adopting him and giving him a second chance to live the life he deserves. 

If you could ask them both a question, what would it be and why?

If I could ask Leo a question it would be “what and how was your life before being rescued and brought here from Puerto Rico?”
And for Max I would ask “how does it feel to have a forever home?”
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Alfred and Oliver

My name is Maggie, and I live with my partner, David, and our two cats, Alfred and Oliver. I thought I would start with a little introduction to Alfred and Oliver.

Alfred is an all-black domestic short hair born on October 31st, 2015. He was originally adopted from the Toronto Humane Society by a family for their 10-year-old son.

When the boy didn’t take good care of Alfred his mother put him back up for adoption. We then adopted him in 2016 when he was about 4-months-old.

Oliver is also a domestic short hair, but he is a Tabby.  I would call him a ticked Tabby because of his marking.

He was born on July 22nd, 2016 and we adopted Oliver in September 2016 from a local pet store in partnership with the Toronto Humane Society.

What do Alfred and Oliver mean to you?

Alfred and Oliver pretty much run our household.

David likes to say that our cats are what we look forward to when we come home each night.

They mean the world to us and we do our very best to keep them happy and healthy at all times.

Why did you decide to start a social media account for them?

I have been an avid hiker for many years and I have always wanted to adopt a dog to take out on hikes with me.

But David and I just don’t live the kind of lifestyle that allows us to have a dog.

One day I found some social media accounts about adventure cats and I knew I had to try to train Alfred and Oliver to go hiking with us.

I discovered that I really loved and enjoyed training them to do all kinds of tricks and to walk on the harness and leash.

I started their personal social media account as a way to encourage other pet owners to stimulate their cats and to get them outside and active.

There are a lot of pets out there that aren’t getting the mental and physical stimulation they deserve.

If @alfredandoliver can help even one pet lover get started with some fun and healthy training, then we are happy and have achieved our goal!

What opportunities have arisen since you opened your account?

I started the account just over a month ago and since then I have had many people reach out to say how much they are enjoying my photography and images of the cats.

Those compliments mean the world to us!

We have been so lucky to connect with lots of individuals from the pet loving community and help others get started with some cat training.

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Do you have a favourite pet? 

Of course not! But, each of the cats has a clear favourite.

Alfred is a very cuddly cat and he likes to rub his face against ours. But unfortunately, David is allergic to cats! 

So, Alfred has chosen me as his best buddy.

And one of our favourite things to do together is falling asleep next to each other.

Every night he lies on my chest and wraps his two front paws around my neck like he’s giving me a big hug.

But Oliver prefers David. They spend lots of time playing fetch together with some of Ollie’s favourite toy mice.

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Have you always been a cat owner?

I didn’t have pets growing up, but David has always been a cat guy.

When he was six-years-old his family adopted a cat named Gidget and she was a great companion of his for fourteen years.

After Gidget’s death David didn’t think he wanted to adopt another cat but after a few weeks we both really missed having a cat around.

I gave Alfred to David as a gift for our two-year anniversary.

Do they always get along?

Alfred and Oliver usually get along very well.

Sometimes Oliver likes to chase his brother around the house, but Alfred is a pretty good sport about it.

There is never any hissing or claws!

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What is the cheekiest thing they have ever done?

Oliver is very particular about his litter box.

If it isn’t kept up to his standard, he likes to do his business on the floor directly next to the box.

This is really our own fault though, since keeping the litter box clean is our job! But it is still something very cheeky that he does! 

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Pickles.the.Beagle

Meet Sarah and her Beagle Pickles. 

What does Pickles mean to you?

Pickles is my happiness and my everything.
If I am having a bad day, I know giving him a hug will make everything better.
He is my best friend and I would do anything for him.

What significance does his name have?

I get asked this a lot.
Growing up I loved the Nickelodeon show Rugrats and one of the characters surname is Pickles.
Back then, I thought it would be funny to call a dog Pickles and then it just became a thing I said for many years.

I would always say “one day I want a Beagle, and I am going to call him Pickles”. 

 

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Why did you decide to buy a Beagle?

Have you ever touched their ears? They are the softest things in the world!

I have always wanted a Beagle because they are the perfect size dog and they have really funny personalities. Pickles is always making me laugh.

What has the experience been like setting up a social media account for Pickles?

Initially it was very slow but I found that the more followers I received the more momentum I had to continue uploading content.
I think it took me a while to decide what type of account I wanted, what story I wanted to tell and what makes Pickles unique.

The answer to that question is that he is an Aussie Beagle who loves the beach, and hates bath time, and our audience has really related to that and loves the honesty! 

 

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If you could ask Pickles one question, what would it be and why? 

“What can I do to make you happier?”
I want Pickles to have the best possible life he can have and sometime I feel so overwhelmed because there are so many dogs out there that I want to save.
Did you know that Beagles are the number one breed of dogs tested on in laboratories? This is due to their sensitive skin and forgiving nature.
And this is why I want Pickles to have the most amazing life possible. 
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What is his favourite thing to do? 

Eat. His nose is incredible.
He finds it really hard to control himself around food.
He needs persistent training to sit and stay on the couch when we are having dinner, otherwise he would be on the dining table the first chance he gets.

What is the cheekiest thing Pickles has ever done?

Just last week Pickles escaped!
My husband got a call from a lady down the road who said she was taking her kids to school in the car and she looked in her rear-view mirror and found Pickles sitting in the back seat!
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Pet Proofing Your Home

“They might only be here for part of your life, but for them, you are their whole life”. 

This pretty much sums it all up.

Pets quickly become part of the family and regardless of whether you adopt them at a young age or when they are more mature, it is important that you ensure you are adequately caring for your pet.

This means feeding them, walking them, caring for them and protecting them by making sure your home environment is safe and pet friendly.

This not only ensures that they are safe at all times, whether you are home or not, but it also gives you peace of mind, knowing that you are doing everything possible to care for your beloved family member.

Here are some tips and tricks protecting you, your family, your pet and your home.

Fencing. 

Fencing is the most important pet proof feature you can install in your home.

Before purchasing a pet, make sure that your fence clearly closes off your back and/ or front yard and that your pet can’t get out.

This is mainly for their safety, so that they don’t run out onto the street or try to play in the neighbour’s yard.

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Get rid of your clutter.

Pets are just like people. They are very curious beings. 

If you keep your favourite sneakers out, an open packet of chips on the kitchen counter or your freshly folded laundry on the couch, you are pretty much asking for trouble.

Try and pack away as much clutter as possible to avoid your pets attacking your belongings. It is in their nature to play and be active, so they don’t know any better which is why it is your responsibility to ensure your home is clutter free.

Depending on the age and breed of your pet, you might find that items such as photo frames and car keys might also need to be kept away from them. 

Fabric Selection. 

Anything delicate, forget about it! Silk, linen, velvet or anything with buttons, will most likely become dirty or be damaged by your pet.

These fabrics are also a magnet for pet hair! So if you keep your pet indoors it might be best to opt for fabrics such as dark leather or a synthetic, that can’t easily be damaged. 

Buttons might also be dangerous because particular breeds of cats and some more energetic playful dogs might mistake these for toys.

Pet Retreat. 

If you create a space in your home for your pet where they can play with their toys and have somewhere comfortable to lay, this would reduce the chances of them running around the home and playing with your furniture.

You could keep their toys in a little hamper and make sure the area is comfortable and entertaining enough for them, that they won’t want to rummage through your stuff around the home.

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Balcony. 

If you have a balcony in your home, much sure that you install bars, screens or fibreglass windows to protect your pets.

Dogs and cats are curious creatures, so by ensuring your balcony is safe and secure, you are protecting your pets from injuring themselves.

Pet proofing is virtually the same as child proofing, so always ask yourself, “if I had a child what would I do?”

Flooring. 

To keep your pet safe, you should install flooring that isn’t slippery, so your fur-friends can’t slip and potentially injure themselves.

Anti-skid flooring, vinyl, laminate, stone, tiles, concrete, polyurethane finished wood, linoleum flooring or hardwood are all products that are pet-friendly.

Carpeting is also a great alternative, that does require a bit more maintenance, but looks fantastic.

If you want to increase the aesthetic qualities of your home and your pets comfort, then you might also consider purchasing area rugs.

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Vacuum Cleaner. 

A strong suction in your vacuum cleaner is vital!

Regardless of the type of flooring you have, decor or furniture you own, pets still shed hair. So having a strong vacuum cleaner is vital for you and your family’s health and for the cleanliness of your home.

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Grooming. 

Keeping on top of grooming is one of the easiest and most effective ways to keep your home pet proof as well as clean and tidy at all times.

Regular baths and nail trimming will prevent your furniture from being scratched or damaged, and it is important for your pets hygiene as well.

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Flowers. 

Flowers are not the first thing that come to mind when people consider pet proofing their home. But in actual fact, certain types of flowers can be toxic to your new beloved member of the family.

Daffodils, for example, can give your dog a rash or cause vomiting and illness.

Plant and lawn fertilisers can also make your pet very ill.

Try and remove all gardens tools out of sight, reduce the use of garden chemicals and eliminate harmful plants from your garden to keep your pet safe and protected when playing in the yard.

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Pets are Welcome: Changes in Victorian Renting Laws

Good news if you are both a pet owner and a renter in Victoria.

The Victorian Government is undertaking a review of the Residential Tenancies Act to provide tenants with more security and increased rights and freedoms.

And this legislation will have a particular section dedicated to increasing the rights of pet owners.

If the changes being discussed are implemented, tenants will be able to rent a property with pets, by acquiring written consent from their landlord.

Pets can only be rejected, with the exception of assistance dogs, if there is reasonable ground or reason not to allow them to reside on the property.

Announced on the 8th October 2017, the reforms will be introduced and discussed in Parliament this year, with changes aimed to be implemented in 2019.

Along with changes to pet ownership laws within Victoria, other legislations such as allowing tenants to slightly modify their properties, will also be discussed in the review.

Currently, within Victoria there are no rules regarding pet ownership in rental properties, which is why so many tenants outright just ban pets without reasonable clause.

If a pet causes damage to a property a landlord can issue a notice of Breach of Duty, and in extreme cases this can result in the termination of a pet.

These implementations are aimed at providing all tenants, and particularly pet owners within Victoria, increased rights and freedoms.

And this extends to being able to own pets whilst renting property.

So it’s a great day to celebrate in the pet community!

Pets make up such a huge component of our lives, and they are finally being recognised as being part of our families. 

It is also much easier said then done when landlords order tenants to just “get rid of it.”

Which is why this progress in the rental market is so exciting, because it means more Victorians can now adopt pets! And with 1 in 4 Victorians renting, this will make a huge difference and impact to shelters around the state.

Comment your thoughts below on this controversial topic. We would love to know what you think.

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Picking the Ideal Pet Name

The name you choose for your pet will stay with them for literally the rest of their life. Crazy stuff huh.

Which is why it is so important that you put a bit of thought and effort into naming your pet! So here is some advice we have come up with below to help make this process easier:

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Keep it simple

There is nothing wrong with naming a black cat Midnight. Or naming your Hamster Tiny. Using generic names that are specific to your breed of pet are great time savers! 

Keeping it simple is perfect advice for people who don’t have time to put much thought into what they want to name their pet. 

And if your pet doesn’t have a stand out physical trait or personality characteristic, and if there’s nothing else you desperately want to name them, then keeping it simple is the way to go.

Keep it short. 

Pets respond better to names that are one or two syllables long. And because you will be calling out their name so often, you will find this tip very helpful.

The best advice is to give your pet a name that is short, sharp and sweet.

Choose names that don’t rhyme with words and phrases that you will use with your pet on a daily basis. For example, Joe rhymes with “no”, so it’s probably best to stay clear from names like this.

Don’t over complicate things. 

Don’t name your pet something complicated or something you would be embarrassed to call out in public.

It is safe to assume that if you call your pet something really wild, political, insulting or very distinctive, people are going to ask questions. So you just need to determine how often you can be bothered answering those questions.

It should make sense. 

You can be super generic with the name and call your rabbit Bunny, but what about when it’s not a bunny anymore?  Or if you call your cat Kittens, then this won’t really make much sense when their older.

Study your pet. 

A helpful tip is to wait a few days and study your pet and any specific characteristics or traits they may have. Whether it be physical or part of its personality.

For instance, if your pet has a spot on them, you could call them Spots. Or if their a bit silly, call them Goofy. These work great as pet names.

Steal it. 

Another idea is to steal it. The name I mean!

Browse through Petbar or stalk your favourite celebrity pets and get some inspiration for your very own fur-friend.

Foods/ Flowers.

Flowers and food are really good categories that make excellent pet names!

Think along the lines of Cinnamon, Peaches, Sugar, Daisy, Rose and other cute short names that can suit a variety of pets.

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Get Creative. 

There is nothing wrong with straying from super generic pet names!

This means that you will have a great story to tell when people ask “why did you choose that name?”. 

Being a pet owner is something to be proud of, and if the name of your pet is significant to you, then try to think outside the box.

Name your pet your favourite food, colour, destination, sports team or something random and wild that is distinctive to you and your personality.

Japanese have some really great pet names that are worth looking into if you want something a bit different. And they usually have some meaning behind them as well.

For example, Haruki means shining sun and Toshi means wise. And what do both of these words have in common? They would be paw-some pet names!

 

Be Inspired. 

Use your own life and experiences as inspiration! Your favourite soccer team, football player, food or brand of clothing could make excellent pet names!

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Ten Pets that fit into a 9-5 Lifestyle

Are you aching for constant love, affection and attention?

Do you want to come home to a pet that loves you?

But do you have a busy work and social life?

Factoring in your lifestyle is really important when determining the best pet to buy for you and your family.

You need to consider how much time and attention the pet needs. And not just minimum time to feed and play with them, but additional time for you and your pet to spend together.

Your home and living condition also need to be taken into consideration. For instance, it would be cruel to adopt a Border Collie if you live in a small apartment, because they would require lots of exercise and space to run around. 

Ultimately, research is the name of the game.

And you shouldn’t think that just because you have a busy work and social schedule, that you can’t own a pet.

Which is why we have compiled a list below of pets that require minimal maintenance, but lots of love and care!

Budgies

Budgies are a really great breed of bird that the whole family is guaranteed to love and adore. If you are really short on time you should consider purchasing two budgies so they have constant company, however, keep in mind you will need to work harder to bond with them.

They require at least an hour of entertainment a day, and will probably mimic you in this time, which can be highly entertaining.

And you can get away with only cleaning out their cage once a week. In addition, they are extremely cost-effective, starting at $20.

Guinea Pigs

There are endless benefits to having a guinea pig! They are extremely cute and affectionate and don’t tend to bite.

They are a great addition to your family if you have children and will fit perfectly into a 9-5 lifestyle.

You will need to let them have some free time out of their cage and a decent amount of space to roam about, but you can do this when you get home from work or in the mornings.

They usually live between 4-6 years and as long as you work on building a relationship with your new guinea pig, they will really warm up to you and shortly become a part of the family.

Leopard Geckos

Geckos make pretty cool household pets and you will be sure to stand out amongst your family and friends. These creatures are extremely gentle and don’t tend to grow larger than 7-10 inches.

The only real requirement they need is heat above their tank to stay healthy as well as humid shelter.

A plastic hideout or secure area in their enclosure is crucial as well, as this is what makes them most comfortable.

Leopard Geckos make a great household pet, and as long as you wash your hands after petting them and maintain a level of hygiene around them to avoid salmonella, they can live up to 20 years.

Fish

Fish are an easy, visually aesthetic and entertaining way to add colour and decor to your home.

You can get away with cleaning out your fish tank once a week. And they also add a sense of charm and style to your house.

They are extremely easy to maintain and there are a wide variety of breeds of fish to choose from.

Cats

Cats are easy to maintain and require minimal attention, especially as they get older.

This doesn’t mean that you can’t give your cat lots of love and affection, but they are usually more independent than dogs and have a natural self-cleaning mechanism.

They can entertain themselves and roam freely inside or outside the home. They are truly a great animal companion to have for anybody without an abundance of spare time.

You can also choose whether you would prefer an inside or outside cat, to further cater to your lifestyle needs.

Hamster

Hamsters are super furry, cute animals who are happy living in solitude in their cages.

Just be careful if you are purchasing two of the opposite sex as they reproduce quite rapidly and in only two weeks time.

These are a great pet choice for those who are time conscious as hamsters can be left to fend for themselves as long as they have food, water and some sort of entertainment.

Rabbits

Rabbits are a great choice for a pet if you are space and time conscious.

They are extremely gentle animals who prefer living in a quiet environment.

The only real caution when considering if you should buy a rabbit or not, is their specific diet, as they are vegetarian and have a very delicate digestive system. But this is just something to keep in mind and be prepared for.

Turtles

Turtles can live up to 40 years!

They do require a big tank that needs lots of equipment, but are a great low maintenance pet.

Certain breeds, such as Painted turtles, adapt to new environments quickly and don’t require much exercise either.

As long as they are fed, have a shallow bed of water in their enclosure and a dry area to cool off, they are quite placid and happy creatures. 

Snakes

Snakes, depending on the type of breed you purchase, can live for more than two decades!

Corn snakes are a popular breed to buy as household pets, as well as Milk or Ball Pythons, as they are neither large or venomous.

Hermit Crabs

Food, water and shelter. Easy right?

Hermit crabs are a great easy pet for families! They only really need a bowl of salt water in their enclosure as well as some dry land to to be comfortable.

They do not reproduce in captivity and because they are nocturnal and like travelling in groups, you can purchase multiple of them and be rest assured that they will be happy and entertained.

If you have any other suggestions we would love to hear them! Comment below.