You've probably heard a lot about pre and probiotics as they've become more popular in human food, but do you know what they are and how they work? Some human foods like yogurt include different forms of added pre and probiotics and there are a few different types that have been found to help maintain our pets' health. TLC includes pre and probiotics in our formulas to support our pets' gut and overall digestive health. Learn more about what these ingredients are, how they work and what they do to support your pet's "Whole Life" nutrition.
Probiotics help regulate the intestinal microbial environment, stopping pathogens and harmful bacteria from colonizing in the digestive system. TLC formulas contain the four most important types of probiotic beneficial bacteria:
Prebiotics are a non-digestible compound that helps to encourage the growth and activity of probiotics. When they reach the intestine, the prebiotics feed the beneficial bacteria, in turn, providing good digestive health.
TLC Whole Life Dog Food contains Mannan-Oligosaccharides
TLC Whole Life Puppy Food, Dog Food, and Cat Food contain Chicory root
By supporting a healthy digestive system, you’ll notice more regular, firmer stools and less mess. Good bacteria in the gut helps to boost the immune system, ward off pathogens and it also aids in the absorption of essential nutrients and vitamins! TLC includes pre and probiotics in our Whole Life Puppy, Dog and Cat Food. Place an order today!
Grooming may seem like a tedious chore but it remains an essential part of having a happy and healthy pet. All fur types will require some form of regular coat-care in order to promote hygiene and circulate the oils that are critical to having a healthy coat. An unhealthy coat will have dry and damaged hair with lots of loose fur in the coat. Find out the best ways to care for your pets hair type by reading our suggestions below!
Yes, even short-haired dogs require frequent grooming and brushing to help maintain their coat. Those who have dogs with short hair will know all too well that this does not exempt you from dealing with lots of shedding. There are many things pet owners can do to help keep their pups short coat shiny and soft!
There is no doubt that many beautiful and elegant dog breeds have long flowing coats, however this comes at price. Long-coated pups often come with lots of shedding and grooming required. No matter the breed most long haired dogs will require more grooming and regular hair care to help maintain their beautiful coat.
Pups with curly hair are often favored because of the low amounts of shedding associated with their fur but curly coats do still require lots of work and grooming. Keeping their fur clean and debris-free is key in helping their coats look their best.
No matter the type of fur, ensuring your dog maintains a smooth and shiny coat starts with their diet. Make sure your pet is getting important nutrients like those found in TLC Whole Life Pet Food. TLC contains high quality animal fats, herbs & oils to give your pet a healthier, shinier coat.
Looking good on the outside starts with feeling good on the inside.
The global Covid-19 pandemic has uprooted all of our lives, and for most, has meant more time spent at home with our families and pets. Changes in routine are not just challenging for us humans; it can be especially hard on our pups. Check out these 5 Tips to Help Reduce Separation Anxiety in Our Pets During Covid. Separation anxiety is much easier to prevent than it is to reverse, and these tips can be used to train a puppy brought home during a lockdown or to retrain a dog experiencing symptoms.
Leaving your pup alone can be hard, but it is essential to keep in mind that they will feed off of your energy. Demonstrate that your departure is no big deal, and you will be returning. This means keeping your emotions in check, using a calm and steady voice, and not dragging things out too long. Avoid getting them overly excited right before making your exit, as this can make it challenging to settle them before you leave.
You want them to learn that:
You want to AVOID teaching them that:
Surrounding your dog with familiar smells while alone will reduce anxiety and help keep them relaxed. Try leaving behind an old sweater or t-shirt with your scent, especially if they're younger. Some dogs respond well when using low-level background noise like a radio or T.V. Test this out while you're still close so you can monitor how they respond (you don't want them barking at that strange noise the entire time you're gone).
Signs and symptoms of separation anxiety can come in many forms. Keep an eye out for:
The best way to encourage your dog to stay calm and well behaved while you are away is to give them positive reinforcement for their good behavior and ignoring unwanted behavior. Even negative attention can feel like a reward when they think it's getting you to respond. Give them a treat, like a "Whole Life Dog Food Biscuit", when they remain calm during short absences and upon your return.
With many groomers temporarily closed and people staying home because of Covid-19, you may be wondering whether you can take on trimming your pup's nails yourself. For new puppy parents and seasoned veterans alike, pulling out the clippers and eyeing up your pet can be somewhat daunting. Will they sit still long enough? What happens if you clip too far? We've gathered helpful tips and advice to guide you through. It can take some time, but with a little patience and persistence, you can give your pup that much needed touch up!
Be sure to have the following on-hand before starting a trim:
It's hard to believe but the holidays are right around the corner! While we gather with close family and friends, it’s important to keep our pets safe among all the bustle and cheer. TLC has gathered 5 safety tips to ensure you and your pet have a safe and happy holiday season!
When it comes to your pet’s diet, protein plays an important role for both dogs and cats in ensuring they receive everything they need to thrive. Here we take a look at this essential nutrient and explore the difference between animal and plant-based proteins.
Spring is well underway and with warmer weather and more time spent outdoors comes the unwelcome arrival of tick season! With ticks becoming an ever-increasing concern for pet owners across the U.S. and Canada, we’re laying out our best advice for protecting your pet and knowing what to do in the event they do pick up a tick.
Our pets are like family and all of us want to know that we’re providing the best possible care to our four-legged family members. Choosing the right food to feed your pet has lasting implications in nearly every area of their lives and to help you feel confident in your decision to feed TLC, we’re laying out answers to your most important and commonly asked questions.
February is National Pet Dental Health Month and we felt it important to shine a spotlight on this important area of your pet’s overall health and well-being! We’ve laid out a few important and some may say surprising facts about your pet’s oral health.
January is here and for many North American families, it means snow, ice, and frigid temperatures. While time spent playing in the snow can be a fun and a great way to burn off some pent up energy, winter weather presents its own safety hazards for your pet. Every dog is different and depending on your pup’s breed, age and activity level, the cold will impact them differently. In this post, we break down what you need to know and how to tell “How Cold Is Too Cold for My Dog?”
How well your pup can tolerate colder temperatures depends heavily on their breed and what they're used to. Breeds that originate from colder parts of the world, like Alaskan Malamutes, Siberian Huskies, Samoyeds, etc., are physically better suited for the cold. They have what’s called an undercoat, a layer of soft fluffy hair beneath a coarse outer coat which helps protect against the elements, and stout furry paws perfect for navigating icy surfaces. Keep in mind though, that a Siberian Husky living in California would likely be affected by the cold if introduced to frigid temperatures, simply because they’re not used to it.
Breeds that do not have an undercoat will be far more sensitive to the cold and owners should consider dressing them in dog-appropriate outerwear as an added layer of protection when spending time in winter weather. Short-legged and toy breeds face the added challenge of having to wade through snow, which can result in exhaustion and feeling colder faster. If you own one of these small pups, you should plan to accompany them or be close at hand when letting them outdoors in colder weather.
If for whatever reason you plan to leave your mid to large size dog outdoors for any period of time during the winter months, be sure to have a clean, safe and spacious shelter for them. Keep dog houses up off the ground, provide enough room for them to easily turn around and a soft warm blanket they can lay on top of.
Be aware of signs your dog is becoming too cold. You know your dog, you can often sense when they’ve had enough but keep an eye out for the following:
TIP: Feeding TLC Whole Life Puppy or Dog Food offers an excellent foundation for any dog, regardless of winter habits but you may find you need to increase or decrease their daily intake, depending on their level of physical activity. If your pup prefers the indoors during the winter and is getting significantly less exercise, you may want to feed slightly less food or offer fewer treats. If they’re spending time in the cold, you may find they require a slight increase in food to replace the calories they burn while outside. What’s important is to make minor adjustments and monitor your pup’s weight. Use the chart below as a guide and adjust as needed to maintain an ideal body weight throughout the winter months!
The holiday season is fast approaching, and we all look forward to spending time with our loved ones! Pets are part of the family, and there’s no reason they can’t join in on the ‘merry’ fun this year. Check out five simple ways you can include your pet this holiday season below and don’t forget to snap lots of photos!
A recent press release from the FDA has indicated concerns that “...dogs that ate certain pet foods containing peas, lentils, other legumes or potatoes as their main ingredients...” [most often labeled ‘grain-free’] are at higher risk of developing canine heart disease, known as dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). This announcement has rattled the pet food industry and lead to many concerned pet parents, wondering about the nutritional value of the food they’ve chosen for their dogs.
We wanted to break down the FDA’s concerns and help answer any questions you may have. We’ve taken some of the questions we’ve received from customers and laid them out along with our responses to give you the answers you need to make the right choices for your pet.
The FDA is investigating potential links between an unusual surge in DCM found in dogs whose primary diet consisted of pet food made with legumes and/or potatoes listed as primary ingredients, which is the case in many “grain-free” formulas. Grain-free formulas often replace grains with vegetable-based protein sources, like peas, lentils, and other legumes. This leads to either having to reduce the amount of higher quality meat-based protein sources, or an unnaturally high protein level (30% or higher), which can have its own health implications.
Meat, like chicken, lamb, and salmon are considered higher quality protein sources for pups and dogs compared to vegetable-based protein sources. This is because meat-based proteins are easily digested and turned into important amino acids, including taurine, an amino acid only available in meat-based protein sources and important to supporting canine heart health. Reducing the amount of quality meat-based protein sources in a formula can mean that pups aren’t getting important nutrients they need to thrive. The FDA is investigating the potential link between formulas relying on vegetable-based proteins and the sudden and unusual increase in cases of canine heart disease.
No. TLC formulas include ancient whole grains.The nutritional benefits these ingredients add to our formulas include high digestibility, a quality source of dietary fibre, magnesium, and carbohydrates.
TLC’s primary ingredients include high quality meat-based protein sources, like farm fresh Chicken, New Zealand Lamb and Atlantic Salmon. As mentioned above, most quality meat-based protein sources are easily digested and naturally turned into important amino acids, like taurine, by your pup’s own body. TLC includes an adequate amount of meat-based protein and there is no need to artificially add taurine to our food.
A misconception since the FDA’s announcement has been that legumes are unhealthy ingredients. This is untrue. It’s not the ingredients themselves but the lack of quality meat-based protein sources believed to be causing the unusual surge in DCM cases. TLC includes legumes, not as a primary protein source but sources of dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals.
Thanks to the FDA and AAFCO, pet food labeling is heavily regulated. All pet food labels must clearly list ingredients in order by weight, meaning that ingredients listed first, have higher inclusion rates. Although reading the label will give you a pretty good sense of what ingredients are being relied upon for primary sources of nutrition, pet parents should be aware of “ingredient splitting”. A formula relying on legumes for protein may attempt to push wanted meat-protein sources up the list by splitting legumes, like peas, into multiple named ingredients. For example, instead of listing “peas” as a single ingredient, a label may say, “pea fiber”, “green peas”, “yellow peas”, “pea hulls”, and “pea fibre”. This practice can be misleading and should be looked for when considering different pet food.
As the summer enters its last leg, we wanted to take a moment to share all of the adventures, road trips and adorable moments our customers have experienced so far this season.
Check out “TLC’s Dog Days of Summer”, a collection of fun memories captured and shared by the TLC family!
Spending time with your pet in the pool, at the beach or at a lakeside cottage can be a fun and exciting way to keep cool and enjoy the ‘Dog Days of Summer’! That said, any time your pet spends near open water comes with a level of risk and it’s important to take the time to prepare and understand canine water safety. We’ve laid out the following tips so you and your furry family member can stay safe and make the most of your time spent on the water this summer.
Contrary to popular belief, dogs are not born with the ability to swim. While many will instinctively do some form of the ‘doggy paddle’ if they find themselves in water, this movement is done out of an instinct to survive and is not a reliable indication of whether your pup is capable of a solo swim or enjoying themselves. In fact, breeds with round bodies, shorter legs and/or flat faces will likely never be strong swimmers and can find themselves in trouble quickly if left unassisted in deeper water. Smaller breeds, brachycephalic breeds, and senior dogs will probably fare better using a kiddie pool to splash around in rather than struggling in a full-size pool or open body of water.
The younger your pup is when you introduce them to the idea of swimming, the more likely they are to enjoy it. Being in water for the first time can be an overwhelming experience on its own; so choose a quiet, calm area to get your pet used to being in the water. Do NOT throw your pet into the deep end of a pool or body of water. They may paddle but it’s out of instinct to survive and taking this approach is guaranteed to cause unnecessary stress, potentially leading to future anxiety around water.
Your pet looks to you for cues on how to approach new situations. If you’re in the water too, supporting them, you can offer comfort as they get themselves used to the water. If your puppy is a smaller breed, or they seem to be paddling themselves vertically with only their front legs, physically support their midsection. They should begin using their hind legs and will eventually learn to propel themselves forward. Remain in the shallow end of the water for a quick and comfortable exit if needed. Use bits of treats, like TLC Whole Life Dog Biscuits and lots of praise to encourage them as they acclimate to this strange new experience!
Your pet needs to be closely monitored around a pool or body of water, even if you believe they are strong swimmers. Keep them in your eyesight and remain close. Distress is hard to detect and can happen quickly. You want to be close enough to intervene and help your pet get out of the water at any moment. Remember to bring your leash when visiting public beaches or lakes so you can keep them close if needed.
If you’re going to allow your dog to roam around in the water freely, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Exhaustion can set in quickly and even the strongest swimmers can find themselves in trouble if they venture out too far from shore and their owners. A well-fitted life jacket keeps your pet afloat and allows them to fully enjoy themselves. Research the appropriate size and fit before buying and introduce it to them by placing it on them while they’re on land. Once they’re used to it, they should enter the water and behave as they normally would!
Pools are often full of chemicals and ingested lake water can contain parasites and diseases. Make fresh, cool water available to your pet throughout your time spent near open water and discourage your pet, using strong verbal cues, if they start drinking from the pool or lake.
Some dogs will be tuckered out after just ten minutes in the water, while others might seem like they’d swim all day! It’s important to take breaks and rest, helping to prevent exhaustion and avoid overexposure to the sun.
Give your dog a good rinse after spending time in a pool or lake to remove chemicals, dirt, debris and critters. Use a towel to dry your pup and pay special attention to their ears. Leftover moisture from a swim can get trapped in there and lead to irritation or a nasty infection. Once you’re finished, give them lots of snuggles and find a spot to enjoy a nice long nap!
You’ve made the decision to feed your dog TLC, a complete and balanced diet from a company you trust. You know that the food they’re eating is made with fresh, natural ingredients and packed with beneficial nutrition but do you understand what happens once their tasty kibble makes its way from bowl to mouth? We break down ‘The Ins and Outs of Canine Digestion’ to give you a better understanding of how it all works; how the essential nutrients, found in every bite of TLC, are broken down and used to provide your pup with Whole Life Nutrition™.
Did you know that digestion begins the second your pup’s kibble enters their mouth? The tongue helps to direct food around the mouth, while saliva softens, and teeth tear, chew and crush, in preparation for the next stage of digestion.
From the mouth, your dog’s food travels through a short, muscular tube called the esophagus. The esophagus contracts and relaxes to help propel food from the mouth to the stomach.
Once the food enters your dog’s stomach, it is stored and ‘processed’ before moving on to the small intestine. The stomach is really where the magic begins! Digestive enzymes, called pepsin and lipase, begin pulling essential amino acids from protein and break down the fat found in your dog’s kibble.
With the help of organs like the pancreas and liver, food that enters the small intestine is turned from semi-solid to liquid. Wavelike movements, called peristalsis, help move food through the small intestine, mixing it with digestive enzymes and further breaking it down. The last part of your dog’s small intestine is where absorption occurs and nutrients enter the bloodstream.
Your dog’s pancreas plays a significant role in turning food into fuel for their body. It secretes digestive enzymes into the gut and also releases insulin and glucagon into the blood.
Your dog’s liver is a hardworking organ and plays an important role in the digestive system too! The liver acts as a filter, processing plant and storage facility all in one. The liver delivers a substance called bile to the small intestine to help with the digestion of your dog’s food. Once the food has passed through the stomach and small intestine, the liver is the first tissue to come into contact with the resulting nutrients. The liver breaks them down into forms that are easier for the rest of the body to use. It also protects your pup from potentially harmful chemicals, filtering them out of the blood and stores proteins, fatty acids, carbs and vitamins for future use.
The final leg of your dog's digestive system begins in the large intestine. Connecting to the small intestine, as you can imagine, at this stage, what was once kibble has now been depleted and transformed into, well, poo. The large intestines’ primary function is to absorb water and electrolytes from what’s left and to move it through to the rectum.
For new puppy parents, clipping your pup’s nails for the first time (and the second, and the third…) can be somewhat daunting. How do you have them sit still long enough? What if you clip too far? We lay out helpful tips and advice below to help you and your pup get comfortable with this essential aspect of grooming. It can take some time, but if you stick with it, you can help your puppy (and yourself) feel relaxed and secure, while helping maintain their overall paw health!
Busting out the clippers without warning and trying to grab your pet’s paw is likely not going to get you anywhere and worse, could leave your pup feeling stressed and anxious. Allow your puppy or dog to become familiar with the clippers by holding them in your hand while you pet them with the other.
For dogs who resist having their paws held all together, try taking things slow. Start with the usual belly rub, scratch behind the ears and lead to slowly touching their paw. Touch one toe at a time, eventually and gently lifting their paw in your hand. Reward them with affection after they allow you to hold their paw in your hand. Incorporate the clippers into the experience by holding them in one hand while you hold their paw in the other.
By giving your pup a workout, like going for a long walk or playing at the dog park, you have a better chance of catching them while they’re relaxed and less excitable, presenting the perfect opportunity to begin trimming.
Begin by slowly picking up your pup’s foot and checking for signs of injury, debris, and wiping any dirt away.
Once you’ve confirmed there are no injuries, begin by trimming the fur around your puppy’s feet and toes, if needed. This helps to prevent discomfort and injury, also making it easier to see what you’re doing when trimming their nails!
Start by gently holding your pet’s paw in one hand and the clippers in the other. Carefully clip one toenail at a time and at a 45° angle, avoiding a vein found in each nail called a ‘quick’. Once you’ve successfully clipped the first nail, reward your pup with a treat, like a TLC Whole Life Dog Biscuit, broken into pieces. If your pup seems nervous, provide them comfort and wait until they settle, gently picking up the same paw, preparing to clip the next nail. Continue this until you’ve clipped each nail. Take your time and maintain a calm and controlled attitude, if you feel yourself stressing out, pause what you’re doing and wait until things settle. If you find you cannot get your pup to settle, don’t push it. Try introducing the clippers over time and when your pup is comfortable, make another attempt.
If the length of your dog’s nails will not allow the time it might take to get them comfortable with having you trim them, then it’s time to consider taking them to a professional! Outgrown nails actually increase the blood flow to the quick and can cause discomfort, poor ‘gait’ or quality of movement, with an increased risk of becoming ingrown(potentially leading to abscess).
Feeding your pet the best quality food possible is important to you and now more than ever, pet owners want to understand what it is they’re pouring into their fur baby’s bowls. Founded in 1994 in response to the lack of quality nutrition found in commercial pet food, TLC proudly lists the ingredients found in our Whole Life Pet Food and we aim to educate our customers so they understand, not only what’s inside of our kibble, but why. Ingredients, including lamb and chicken meal, are listed first in all TLC Pet Food. So what is lamb or chicken meal? What are their nutritional benefits?
When you remove the moisture from fresh meat you leave behind a high quality and nutritionally beneficial ingredient, called a meat meal. The process of removing the moisture from the fresh meat does not diminish the nutritional value, and the chicken meal, lamb meal and salmon meal used in TLC Pet Food contain 90% digestible protein, low ash and valuable amino acids.
In addition to the benefits noted above, the same quantity of meat meal has 4-5 x the nutrients found in the same weight of fresh meat, due to the difference in moisture. Meat meal is left with approximately 5% moisture content compared to fresh meat, which is 70% water. Weight matters because ingredients are listed in order and by weight. Pet food listing only fresh meat in their food, must offset the weight of the water removed in cooking. Once food using only fresh meat has been cooked, the quantity of the actual meat will be significantly less than what’s listed and therefore, the nutritional benefits from the meat, diminished. This means that your pet would actually be receiving much of its protein from lower quality, plant-based sources, like potatoes or tapioca versus high-quality sources like lamb and salmon meal found in TLC Whole Life Pet Food. Using meat meals, like quality lamb and chicken meal, allows for a greater quantity to be included in the food. The lamb, chicken and salmon meals found in TLC Pet Food are considered some of the best and most nutritionally beneficial pet food ingredients available and is the reason we choose to include them, in combination with fresh meat, in our Whole Life Puppy, Dog, and Cat Food.
None of the fresh meat or meals in TLC include byproducts or animal waste, like feathers, heads, feet, or entrails and all of TLC’s meat meals include only the animal listed, ie., salmon meal = 100% salmon.
We can all get a little stir-crazy during the long winter months and that goes for our pets too! We lay out “10 Winter Boredom Busters” that help address your dog’s cognitive, physical and emotional well-being. Most can be done in the comfort of your home and all of them are easy to prepare and guaranteed to help keep your pup happy and healthy this winter!
Tip: For pups of the toy and small breed variety, use mini-muffin trays and ping pong balls instead!
Section of an area of your home, use cushions, couch pieces and blankets to create a "fort".
Have fun watching your pup run and jump, letting out some much needed energy!
After a significant snow dump, get out your shovel and create a mini "track" in your yard. Let your pup loose and have fun watching them expend their energy while circling the track!
Owner Jay Moschella shares his Greyhound racing around a hand shoveled track in the snow. (Originally posted by @Jay_Moschella via Twitter )
Let your pup experience a change in scenery by taking alternate routes on your daily walk. When weather permits, visit new destinations and let your pup explore!
Give your pup some extra attention this winter! Curl up on the couch and treat them to some one on one time.
Choose a new trick and help bolster your pup's self-esteem as they learn to master it. Remember, TLC Whole Life Biscuits are the perfect treat for rewarding tricks!
Technically the first day of winter won’t arrive for another month but for many North American families, colder weather has already made its presence known (and felt - brrr!). Keep your fur baby safe and cozy all season long with these 5 essential Winter Care Tips!
As temperatures fall, some pups begin shedding their light summer undercoat and grow a thicker winter coat. These fur coats work by trapping the heat from your dog’s body and keeping it next to their skin, allowing them to maintain body heat longer when outdoors. This natural defence against Mother Nature’s plummeting temperatures should be allowed to take place. Avoid significant haircuts during Winter months and keep your dog comfortable by giving them a good brushing to remove excess hair. Smaller pups with thinner coats should be protected from the elements with well-fitting winter doggie jackets!
Provide your pet a safe and warm place to shelter from the elements if left outside! Ensure they have a sturdy dog house or kennel that can withstand cold weather. Protect their bodies from cold, hard surfaces like cement by laying straw or a warm, weather-resistant blanket along the floor of the home or kennel. Remember to change the blanket/straw frequently and tidy their space to avoid creating an unpleasant environment!
Going for walks is an important part of making sure your dog is getting enough exercise, especially during winter! Stay clear of ice patches and areas that have been salted to avoid injuring your pup’s paws.
TIP: Apply a thin, even layer of homemade paw balm (see recipe below) on your pup’s paws, pads and exposed skin before heading out into the cold. Wipe paws and pads clean upon return and apply another layer to help sooth and prevent dry, cracked skin.
The right diet during colder temperatures helps provide the perfect balance of calories and nutrients, supporting fur growth and density, while helping prevent obesity. Feeding your dog a well-balanced food, like TLC Whole Life Pet Food
, will keep them happy and healthy, whether they’re acclimating to falling temperatures or spending more time indoors.
[place your order now]
Recognize when your pup is ready to come indoors! Except for certain breeds, most pups prefer and thrive indoors with their loved ones during cold winter months. Look for signs your dog is too cold, like shivering or trembling, lethargy, whimpering, and scratching at the door.
Yields: Approximately 500 ml
Tip: Smaller mason jars will allow for you to guide your pups paw into the jar and apply the balm. If using smaller containers, apply to paws with your fingers.
When your dog is showing signs of separation anxiety it is both heartbreaking and frustrating. We love our pups and enjoy our time with them but the reality of work, school, and life in general, makes it impossible to spend every waking minute with them.
We’ve broken down how to prevent the onset of separation anxiety, what to look for to properly identify it and how you can give your dog the confidence they need to spend time on their own.
SIGNS & SYMPTOMS
Excessive salivation and/or licking at paws
Having accidents only when left alone and after successful house-training
On-going barking and/or whining
Destruction of household items ie., shoes, pillows, magazines, plants a.k.a. Anything within reach
Excessive scratching at doors, walls or windows (sometimes to the point of injury)
Attempts to escape from the crate or room they’ve been put in
Sudden lethargy and disinterest in food or activity
Restlessness or a change in behavior when you begin to prepare to leave the house
IS IT REALLY SEPARATION ANXIETY?
Some of the signs and symptoms for separation anxiety disguise themselves as aggression, regression, boredom or visa versa. To resolve the unwanted behaviors your pup is exhibiting, it’s important to understand the root cause. Is your pup soiling all over the house while you’re away because they’re experiencing stress and anxiety or is it an underlying medical issue? Are they destroying anything they can get their paws on while you’re away out of boredom or is it a desperate attempt to escape the confines of their dedicated space?
Most symptoms for separation anxiety will begin because of a change in routine (ie., the kids going back to school, you returning to work) and will occur while you’re out of sight or away from the house completely. You also may notice some of the behaviors beginning as you prepare to leave the house (packing your lunch every morning, grabbing your keys, etc.).
Some things you can do to determine if your pup is truly experiencing stress, include:
Keeping track of when these behaviors occur. Is it only when you’re away from the house or out of sight?
Ask your neighbors if they hear anything while you’re away (they’ll likely be more than happy to share if your pup has been howling consistently throughout the day) or consider using a puppy cam to record your pet’s activity while you’re gone.
Ensure your pup is getting enough exercise and cognitive stimulation. A dog suffering from boredom is going to get restless when cooped up in the house, which can also lead to the destruction of furniture/shoes/carpet, etc.,
Have a vet offer their opinion. It never hurts to rule out underlying medical issues that could be causing “accidents” around the house.
Once you have ruled out other possibilities for their behavior; use the following tips to prevent or reverse the signs and symptoms of separation anxiety.
GET STARTED EARLY
Providing your puppy with the confidence to be apart from their humans begins as soon as they’re ready for training. Use TLC Whole Life Dog Biscuits to reward behavior you want to see and in this case, ignore the behavior you don’t.
You want them to learn from an early age that:
They are safe in their crate/area of the house
Your coming and going is a part of life
Remaining calm and being patient will reap rewards (like treats and attention)
You want to AVOID teaching them that:
It’s a big deal when you leave or are not present
When they act out/whine/bark, you will come running
They can’t feel secure without you being close by
Separation anxiety is much easier to prevent than it is to reverse, however, the following tips can be used for both training a puppy or retraining a dog experiencing symptoms. Retraining will take time but with a little patience and consistency from the whole family, you can help your dog learn to feel secure when they’re left alone.
WHAT TO DO
PREPARE, PREPARE, PREPARE
Have your puppy become familiar with the space they’ll be occupying when left alone over time. Whether a crate, a room, or part of the house, let them explore and sniff their way to comfort. Slowly have them spend longer intervals of time in this space alone. Start with leaving the area and progress to short trips and so on.
AVOID REWARDING UNWANTED BEHAVIOR
Although sometimes hard to resist, avoid rewarding unwanted behaviors with affection and attention. Even reprimanding your pup can be viewed as a reward if they’re looking for attention. If your puppy begins barking or whining from their crate, wait until they’ve stopped before entering the room. When they’re calm and ready, open the door and give them a TLC Whole Life Dog Biscuit. If they follow you around, nudging your leg, or pounce on you the second you walk through the door, ignore them. Wait until they’ve calmed down, are sitting patiently and then give them the attention.
HINT: TLC Whole Life Dog Biscuits can be broken into pieces for training. Packed with wholesome, natural ingredients and including glucosamine and chondroitin for healthy hips and joints; TLC biscuits are a healthy reward your pup will love.
KEEP IT CALM
For some of us, leaving our dogs for work or an extended period of time can be just as stressful as it is on them. Regardless, avoid making a big deal about your departure. Our pups look to us for cues on how to feel, when we exhibit signs of stress or anxiety, their bound to pick up on it. You need to treat your leaving as “no big deal”. You’ll be back.
SEE YOU LATER
Avoid creating a long drawn out routine that signals your departure. Say goodbye if you have to but keep it short or avoid it altogether if you can. The idea is to make your coming and going a normal and unimportant aspect of daily life. Fit your snuggles in well before leaving. Even sensing that you’re about to leave can cause a pup with separation anxiety stress, so not making a fuss and carrying on as normal will help to keep things calm.
Some dogs respond well to a little distraction. Try leaving the T.V. on low, playing music, a sound machine or audio book. Just the feeling of humans being present can help to keep an otherwise anxious pup calm.
The last thing we want is to prolong suffering for our pets. If your dog happens to have a severe case of separation anxiety (to the point where they are injuring themselves when left alone), your vet may recommend medication to keep them calm. This should be considered a temporary solution and used in combination with efforts to retrain your dog to feel secure and confident, no matter if they’re close by or on their own.
Since part of caring for a dog is cleaning up after they’ve done their “doody”, owners are keenly aware of their pup’s individual bathroom habits and what comes from it. The slightest change in frequency, shape, size, color, etc., can have you concerned. Here, we lay out ten reasons your pup could be experiencing changes in their routine, bowel movements or urine and what you can do to help get them back to “regular” order!
Happening most often in puppies under a year old, submissive peeing occurs when your puppy is trying to demonstrate to you (or another dog) that they are not a threat. This results in sudden puddles throughout the house and is often mistaken for a regression in house training. Prevent this innate response in your puppy by staying calm when it happens and avoid giving them a reaction. Getting upset or overreacting will only reinforce their sense of intimidation and lead to more “accidents”.
Another situation mistaken for regression occurs in dogs 6-18 months. Just like humans, your adolescent pup experiences some major changes in their brain and this can sometimes lead to a resurgence of accidents happening in the house. Your best option is to stick to a routine and return to rewarding successful bathroom breaks!
Seeing a sudden change in the color, consistency, odor, etc., of your pup’s stool can be alarming. If your dog likes to scavenge, it could be caused by something they picked up on one of their adventures so it’s important to pay attention. You should always contact your animal health professional if your pup’s stool appears bloody, they seem in pain or there are other symptoms with the change in stool. You can prevent these mystery poops by keeping your yard and home free of unofficial “chew toys” and other hazards.
Amazingly, some dogs have the ability to sense a change in their owner’s health. Attempting to alert their people to these changes, they will begin urinating, sometimes right before a medical emergency occurs, like a seizure or heart attack. The relationship between humans and their dogs is truly an amazing thing!
By the time you bring your new puppy home, it’s likely they’re leaving the only environment they’ve ever known. This is a major change for a little pup to deal with and it can sometimes lead to a few days (even weeks) of loose stool. Providing a caring environment and keeping a watchful eye is your best bet in this situation. If you don’t see a return to firm (but not hard) stool after a few weeks, or if there are other accompanying symptoms, it’s time to visit the vet!
Just like people, some dogs have a nervous stomach. Similar to what can happen with a new pup, if there are sudden changes in the household (new baby, someone moves out, etc.,) your dog can experience a certain level of stress, leading to loose stools or even sudden accidents after being housetrained. As in most situations, the best way to manage this is to stay calm, comfort your pup whenever possible and maintain a regular bathroom routine.
A change in stool can sometimes be an indication that your pup has developed or has an allergy or intolerance to something. Schedule an appointment with your vet if you suspect an allergy.
You should always get the advice of your dog’s health practitioner if a sudden change in stool or urine accompanies symptoms like lethargy, blood in the stool, major discomfort, etc. On-going diarrhea is sometimes the sign of another underlying issue and medical concerns should always be ruled out.
As our pup’s age, they can sometimes experience changes in their bathroom routines. Similar to humans, our puppies-at-heart can lose control of their bladders (not able to hold it as long) or even “forget” their body’s cues for needing to head outside. It’s incredibly important to have your senior dog checked out by a veterinarian so they can help pinpoint the reason for the change and what steps you can take to address it.
Choosing to feed your pet TLC is an excellent decision and promotes lifelong health and longevity. Avoid upsetting your pup’s stomach by transitioning over time, using the instructions provided on the bag. Changes in stool can occur and should return to normal after a couple of weeks feeding premium quality TLC!
COMMON QUESTION: My puppy is eating his poop, is this normal?
Although there is plenty of misinformation out there claiming that a dog eating its own feces is a sign of malnutrition; this idea has largely been debunked by leading Nutritionists, Animal Behaviorists and Veterinarians. Accepted theories include that they may just like it, especially if they’re fed a high-quality diet packed with quality proteins, fats and oils (which would also be found in their poop). Another thought is it could be an instinct, leftover from their wild ancestors who might have eaten feces as a way of tidying their living quarters. Regardless, there is a way to help discourage the behavior by immediately removing the poop, bringing them inside and offering a treat. By repeating this action, your pup will come to expect the yummy treat and should lose interest in their feces.
If you have any questions or concerns about TLC, we want to hear from you! Our dedicated Pet Service Team is available by phone or email so feel free to reach out to 1-877-328-8400 or email@example.com
Camping and spending time outdoors is a favorite Summer pastime for many North American families and their pets. With this Summer seeing more ticks than in years past, it’s more important than ever for pet parents like you to know how to avoid them and what to do if you discover them on your pet!
There are a variety of ticks found all over North America and several different species. Research your destination prior to leaving to find out the risk-level for tick bites, the kind of tick native to the area and any associated diseases they might carry.
Purchase a tick and flea collar and speak with your vet to find a repellant lotion or oral medication safe for pets.
Pack a tick-removal kit or bring tweezers, iodine scrub, rubbing alcohol and shampoo.
Ticks prefer humid, moist environments and are most often found in heavily wooded areas, brush and overgrown grass. If you have control over where you set-up camp, choose a clearing, away from the woods.
Ticks feast on blood and seek out warm moving animals like dogs, cats and humans. They latch onto their host and can feast for several hours up to several days, depending on the tick! Diseases found in ticks are transmitted up to 24-36 hours after the initial bite, making early detection and removal even more important.
To check your pet for ticks, run your hands over their body and feel for any unusual lumps or bumps and watch their skin for any signs of irritation.
Although you may feel squeamish about removing a tick from your pet yourself, doing so can help prevent your pet contracting a disease from the bite. If you can’t successfully remove the tick yourself be sure to see a healthcare provider ASAP and always follow up with your vet after a tick bite if you have concerns about your pet’s well-being.
Follow these steps to remove a tick from your pet’s body:
To help calm your pet and keep them from moving during the process, always have another person present to help.
If a tick is found before it has successfully attached, remove it from your pet using a pair of tweezers. Always wash your hands and never crush a tick, doing so can inadvertently spread disease.
If the tick is found after it’s attached, use the tweezers to grasp the tick as close to your pet’s body as possible.
When you feel you have a firm grip on the tick, slowly but firmly begin pulling the tick in an outwards direction away from your pet’s body.
Avoid pulling too quickly, jerking or twisting the tweezers, this could cause parts of the tick to break off underneath the skin where you can’t grab it.
After removal, use iodine scrub to clean the area then apply rubbing alcohol. Finally, give your pet a bath using shampoo and warm water to thoroughly clean the affected area.
Consider placing the tick in a plastic bottle or container with a moist cotton ball and bring it with you to the vet to have it identified.
Monitor your pet and the site of the bite for signs of illness or infection.
Seek medical attention immediately if you feel your pet may have contracted a disease or has an infection caused by the bite.
With record-breaking temperatures a regular occurrence during the Summer months, it’s more important than ever to take care and prevent overheating in our pets. We break down need-to-know information and helpful tips to help you keep your pet cool, safe, happy and healthy all summer long!
SCHEDULE YOUR WALKS ACCORDINGLY
You should shift your daily walk to early morning or early evening, before or after the sun is at its highest point in the sky.
SHORTER SPURTS OF RIGOROUS ACTIVITY
Avoid going for lengthy walks or exercising your pet too vigorously while temperatures are high. Try having shorter spurts of activity outdoors throughout the day and monitor your pet for cues to how they’re managing the heat.
WATER, WATER, WATER
Like humans, it’s important to replace fluids your pet may lose to the heat. Unlike humans, a dog cools off from panting more than they do from sweating. Making sure your pet has easy access to cool, clean water throughout the day can help prevent dehydration or heat stress.
QUICK TIP: Bring a travel bowl and fresh water with you when going on walks during the summer and remember to pack a serving of their favorite TLC Whole Life Pet Food or treats. Making sure your pet is getting adequate nutrition and keeping hydrated will help to keep them happy and healthy all summer long!
SPRAY YOUR PUP’S BELLY & PAWS
If you notice your dog is feeling the heat, start by cooling their paws and belly first. It’s this part of their body where heat escapes the quickest and doing so can help to bring your pup’s temperature right down. Use a spray bottle with cool water, a hose on a gentle setting, wet cloth, or sponge.
LET ‘EM DIG
Allowing your pet to dig in the dirt is just another way they instinctually cool themselves down! Digging into the top layer of dirt helps to expose the cooler earth beneath the surface. You may find after digging, your pup will curl up on the cooler dirt and help themselves to a little summer’s nap!
SHADE & SHELTER
If your pet will be spending any length of time outside, it’s important to make sure that they have access to a shaded area outside of their dog house and preferably on the grass. Even the largest dog houses can reach fatally high temperatures during the summer months.
Giving your cat a nice brush and trimming your pup’s hair is an excellent way to lose excess fur and provide a little heat-relief. Take care not to trim all the way to the skin as your pet’s fur actually acts as a sunblock and without it, their sensitive skin is exposed to the sun’s rays.
QUICK TIP: Did you know there is sunblock for pets? Protect your furry family member’s ears and nose by applying a pet-approved sunblock prior to letting them outdoors!
NEVER EVER LEAVE YOUR PET UNATTENDED IN A VEHICLE
With rising temperatures, your vehicle can become as hot as an oven in under ten minutes and in as much time, your pet could be affected by heat stress or even death if left alone in your car. This hazard is avoidable and preventable and TLC encourages you to commit to never leaving your pet alone in your vehicle even for short periods of time!
PROTECT THEIR PAWS
Before you take your pet on a walk or let them out in the yard, feel out the sidewalk or asphalt by using your bare hand or foot. If the surface is too hot for you to handle, then it’s definitely too
hot for your pet!
QUICK TIP: Find a pair of heat-resistant booties for your pet to protect their paws this summer
We all take precautions when it comes to properly storing the food we purchase to feed our families and the same precautions should be taken when storing food for your pet.
Use these guidelines to store your pet’s TLC and their premium quality food will maintain its freshness and continue providing the best nutrition possible for lifelong health!
Unlike other commercial pet food that may sit on a grocery store shelf before being purchased, TLC Pet Food is made fresh using natural ingredients. It arrives to your door for free soon after it was packaged.
Place your order of TLC today and our premium quality pet food will be delivered fresh and delivered FREE to your door!
Thanks to how fresh it is and the resealable bag that it arrives in, TLC is safe to feed your pet approximately one year after it was packaged.
The bag your pet’s TLC arrives in has been designed to maintain freshness and prevent the natural ingredients it holds from spoiling. This bag helps to keep things like oxygen and humidity out and hold the naturally occurring oils in. After opening a bag of TLC, simply run your fingers across the seal at the top of the bag to close it.
Store your TLC in a cool, dry place and for ensured freshness, you can place the re-sealed bag of TLC in an airtight container.
If you’d prefer to empty the bag of TLC into a container, follow these tips to ensure proper storage:
Wash and thoroughly dry the container before using and before every new bag is poured into it
Use a container that can be easily closed and opened with an airtight lid
Store the container in a cool dry place and avoid areas where temperatures fluctuate greatly
TLC Whole Life Dog Biscuits are sold in a 5 lb resealable bag or a 20 lb bulk box.
Firmly press the top of the biscuit bag together and the Velcro™ seal will help keep your pup’s treats fresh for up to one year.
When you purchase the 20 lb bulk box of TLC Whole Life Dog Biscuits, they will arrive fresh and should be transported from the recyclable shipping container they arrived in, to a pre-washed and dried container for proper storage. Use a large RubberMaid container, an unused garbage can or recycling bin, or check out Pinterest for creative storage ideas!
TLC is rolling out some new and exciting developments over the next couple of months and we're pleased to share them with you!
To avoid the heat, try walking your pets early in the morning or late at night when the humidity isn't as high. It is also important to limit the amount of exercise during the hotter months.
Always make sure that your pets have access to fresh water, this will help avoid dehydration. Bring water for your pet when taking them for walks or travelling in a car.
Water can also be used to cool your pet down. Try laying down a wet towel for your dog to lie on or set up a kiddie pool in the shade for them to play in.
Pavement and other ground surfaces retain heat, which could burn your pet's paws. A good way to judge whether the ground is too hot is by placing the back of your hand against the pavement and holding it there for 10 seconds. If it's uncomfortable to leave your hand there, then it's too hot for your pets.
Do not leave your pets in a parked car. A parked car on a 78-degree day could reach up to 120 degrees in just minutes and on a 90-degree day, the temperature can reach as high as 160 degrees.
With the summer heat comes the bugs. Learn more on how to keep them away
The health and well-being of our pets is at the heart of everything we do here at TLC Pet Foods, which is why we’re taking part in National Animal Poison Prevention Week and helping to shine a light on the many obvious and seemingly harmless dangers that can be found throughout the average North American home.
All week long we’ll be exploring a different area of the home and identifying the most common hazards that pose a danger to our beloved, four-legged friends. Thousands of household pets are needlessly ill-stricken and, in worse case scenarios, killed due to the accidental exposure or ingestion of medications, foods, pesticides, cleaners, plants and more. By taking action and putting measures into place to prevent your pet’s exposure to these dangers, you are helping to protect them from a potentially fatal accident.
Today we’re taking a look at the bathroom and will explore a new part of our homes every day this week. Take note of the following information and come back each day to learn more about how you can help to protect your pets from accidental poisoning.
The bathroom may seem like an obvious place for hidden dangers to our pets and rightfully so! Just as you would for a human baby or toddler, measures should be taken to ensure that all cupboards and shelves are void of potentially harmful substances and not easily accessed by your pet. The most harmful and common threats found in our bathrooms include:
Take a good look around your bathroom, get on all fours to see the world from your pet’s point of view. Store the items listed above in a safe and unattainable place, making sure to place items like medications, cosmetics and cleaners back where they belong.
If you suspect your pet has been exposed to or ingested a poisonous substance, remain calm, gather any leftover materials that could help to identify what was consumed and determine the most appropriate course of action to take, including:
Take care of your pet from the inside out by offering an ancestral-based diet that includes a balance of quality meats, animal fats, vitamins and minerals! Order TLC Whole Life Pet Food, made fresh to order and shipped directly to your doorstep FREE.
Despite the saying that a dog’s mouth is cleaner than a human’s, dogs are still prone to the same issues that humans are when it comes to their teeth. Cavities, tartar and plaque buildup, and gum disease are all common in dogs. Here is a list of 5 things that you can do to keep your pet’s teeth clean
TLC Biscuits are designed to clean your dog’s teeth and freshen their breath. This isachieved from the addition of the fine chewing particles that naturally and gently scrub the surface of the tooth.
Dry Food such as TLC Whole Life Pet Food is effective for fighting tartar and plaque build-up by scraping the teeth.
Chew Toys help strengthen your pet’s gums and teeth.
Brushing your pet’s teeth (2-3 times a week) will help break down plaque and help fight bacteria. Use a toothpaste that is formulated for dogs and cats, as human toothpaste foams too much which can cause an upset stomach. If you do not want to use toothpaste at all, just using water or baking soda will also work. Dog specific toothbrushes can be bought at any pet store, as well as finger caps. If you don’t have a toothbrush a warm cloth also works well for cleaning the teeth. Only the outsides of the teeth need to be cleaned, as the dog’s tongue will naturally clean the inside and top surfaces.
Professional Cleaning at the vet will help remove years of tartar and plaque build-up and other bacteria. This cleaning will also ensure that your furry friend does not have any other gum or teeth issues.
Feeding your pet high quality food can help reduce fur loss. TLC Whole Life Natural Pet Food is a super-premium pet food that contains quality animal fats, herbs & oils to give your pet a healthier, shinier coat.
Brushing your pet regularly helps keep your home free of shedding hair, dander and even dirt. Brushing your pet’s fur will also help remove knots and distribute the oils that are critical to having a healthy coat.
Run a squeegee through the carpet in your home to get stubborn pet hair out.
Use a lint roller on clothes and furniture to help get rid of unwanted pet hair.