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  Trivia - pet safety measures

Tanya Munshi

A pet is like a family member, so while shifting, you would like your pet to be as comfortable as possible. Hence, it is strongly advisable to choose a reliable moving company that will be kind to your pet and transport it safely.

Choose a moving company wisely
• Ensure that there is a pet moving specialist within the moving company.
• Professional pet handlers are trained to respond to pet’s needs and ensure their comfort during transportation. Ensure that the company you are going with has one. Meet the person before you sign the deal.
• Ensure that the company is equipped to move pets in safe and healthy conditions, be it within the country or internationally.
• The company should be well informed regarding rules of transporting pets to foreign countries. You can ask questions to be sure about this.
• Pet movers should be certified by an animal and pet welfare board within the state/country. Ask for accreditations.

Two Main Services
Usually, a certified mover who also moves pets should be able to offer you two kinds of services:

In this type of service, both you and your pet can travel together on the same flight. Though your pet checks in with you, it will re-join you only on arrival.

Here you don’t get to travel with your pet. Your pet will be collected from your home, ‘packed’ safely by experts, taken as cargo and delivered to you at your final destination.

Shifting Your Pet
• Ensure the box used for packing your pet is big enough for it to sit up, stand, lie down and stretch comfortably.
• The box should be well ventilated and strong enough to keep the pet safe inside during transportation.
• There should be a food and a water bowl readily available for your pet.
• The base of the box should be equipped with an absorbent litter tray.
• Ensure that your pet is not transferred in a cage, especially during transportation by air.
• Your pet’s specifications, care, food timings etc. should be stuck on the box.

Diwali is an exciting festival for us but it's not as much fun for our pets. The sound of bursting crackers, air laden with smoke and over eating sweets can affect your pet in more ways than one. Here's what you need to keep in mind to ensure that your pet has a safe and fun Diwali...

1. Sound off
While it may not be possible for you to completely switch off the sound of bursting crackers, you can do your bit to make sure your pet is not traumatized by it. If you have a cat or a dog, cover their ears with a muffler or scarf to cut off as much sound as possible. If you have a bird, move the cage to a room that's furthest from noise.

2. Smoke alert
Like you, your pet too is affected by the pollution. Avoid taking your pet out for a walk on the roads at a time when people are bursting crackers. If possible, take it to your building terrace or any other place.

3. Safety first
If you must take your pet out, make sure there are no dangerous surprises along the way. Keep your eyes open for crackers and noise bombs that may have been lit by a naughty neighbourhood kid.

4. Binge control
OK, so your pet loves all the mithai but that's no reason to keep giving it a laddoo every other minute. Don't get swayed by doggy eye looks – it's a trick they've mastered! And make sure your guests also don't give sweets to your pet because you'll be the one cleaning up the mess after an upset stomach.

5. Use common sense
At the end of the day, there's no right or wrong thing you can do... just make sure you know what's best for your pet. For example, educate your children to not burst crackers near your pet; do not light diyas in the area accessible to your pet and so on.

Keep these simple tips in mind and you and your pet will have a safe and a healthy Diwali!


You love taking your dog for a walk or out in the garden. You love to see your dog playing around freely rather than on a leash. But then you know that there are many who do not really approve of how you think about your dog. Well, they may be right and you just need to follow these 5 simple tips to turn those frowns upside down and yet treat your dog the way you like:

1. Know your dog
The first step is to know your dog well. You need to know if he is the excitable type or the docile type. This will help you handle your dog correctly and keep him as far away from trouble as possible.

2. Always have control
Leash or no leash, as long as you have control of your animal, it is fine. No need to have a tight leash and strain to hold him back every time. Just make sure he listens to you and knows who the boss is. Train him to understand when you are angry and when your commands strictly need to be followed.

3. Keep him enclosed
No matter how much control you have over your animal, it is still an animal. So, when not on a leash, keep him in an enclosed region like a park to avoid any trouble.

4. Mind the traffic
Exercise courtesy on the road. It’s just like driving. There are no firm rules but you need to follow some simple rules while walking your dog. Give way to cyclists, pedestrians, joggers etc. You don’t know what they feel about pets, so it is better to avoid any confrontations.

5. Mind the petting
When people start petting your animal, keep a close watch. Make sure they don’t agitate him in any way. It just needs one bite to spoil the fun. Be polite but ask people to refrain from getting too touchy with your dog, especially if they are kids.

There you go. Now go ahead and have a great time with your best friend!

Here is a classic pet owner's problem. You are allergic to animals but have a pet. What do you do? Both pet and owner must learn to co–exist peacefully, and this is not really as difficult as it sounds. All it requires is a good understanding of the allergy and following a few ground rules to prevent it.

You might be interested to know that for most people cats tend to be more allergenic (allergy causing) than dogs. And if somebody tells you that certain breeds of dogs and cats are 'non-allergenic,' think again. Even hairless breeds can be highly allergenic. Here are 5 tips to help you ease your situation around your pet and to ensure that the allergy causes no serious danger:

1. Create an 'allergy free' zone
Mark a space at home that is non accessible to your pet and always ensure that you do not let your pet enter it. Use a strong air cleaner in the house and especially in the 'allergy free' zone.

2. Avoid using dust catching items
Get rid of curtains, floor carpets etc. that catch and trap dust. Clean the house regularly to prevent accumulation of any excess dust. Use a micro filter in the AC to catch all the allergens.

3. Bathe your pet regularly
Giving your pet a bath regularly reduces the level of allergens by almost 84%. Sprays that claim to reduce pet allergens are not as effective as a bath for your pet.

4. Try using Immunotherapy
Immunotherapy has proven to be effective in most cases. However, these only reduce symptoms, they don't remove allergies. They work by gradually desensitizing a person's immune system to allergies. This is usually in the form of an injection to be taken once every month.

5. Be alert and hygiene conscious
All allergic reactions may not necessarily be because of your pet! Allergies are usually cumulative and could be because of a collection of factors like dust, pollen, etc apart from animal allergens. Find out what you are allergic to before blaming your pet. Usually, a combination of good house-keeping, pet care and medical help usually takes care of most animal allergies.

It's that time of the year when you head out to the hills for a well-deserved break. But your trip may not turn out to be so great if you keep worrying about your dear pet. Why? Because more often than not, you'll have to leave your pet behind!

So, before you head out for a holiday, implement these simple tips to take care of your pet so that you can enjoy your vacation to the fullest.

1. Leave your pet in safe hands
It goes without saying that your pet will miss you. So make sure you leave him behind with a member of your family he knows and is comfortable with. Ideally, your pet's caretaker should be someone you know and trust and who will love and pamper your pet as much as you do.

2. Consider the option of a pet care centre
If you do not know of anyone reliable who could keep your pet, check the local yellow pages for a pet care centre or a pet hotel where you can leave your pet for the time you are away. Before you freeze on a place, ensure that it is well-managed by trained staff, is clean and offers hygienic food and water.

3. Write down the details
Prepare a chart with details of your pet's diet plan, exercise time and other daily habits. This will make it easier for your pet's caretaker to make your pet feel that things are as normal as they used to be, even with you not being around.

4. Hand over your pets favourite food and daily use things
If your pet is used to eating something special that he is unlikely to get at the caretaker's place, do remember to leave it behind. Also, do leave behind his special toiletries, sleeping mattress, combing brush and such things that he may be used to and will need on a daily basis.

5. Have a chat with the caretaker
Inform the caretaker of your pet's special needs if any and leave behind the vet's contact info and an emergency number you can be reached on.
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