Shaggy Chic is proud to be a contributor to the American Humane Association, Hero Dog Awards. This great organization and its representatives set the gold standard for careful and humane treatment of animals during film production, throughout the entertainment industry.

At the end of such animal-friendly films as We Bought A Zoo, starring Matt Damon, or Steven Spielberg’s War Horse, both of which are playing this holiday season, you will find a citation declaring: “No Animals Were Harmed During This Production.”

That is because of the rigorous care taken by the American Humane Society. We at Shaggy Chic support their great work. Every pet and their owner who comes into our shop can expect the same respect & attention.   We ensure quality care for all our customers’ pets.

American Humane Association on the set of War Horse

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If you and your pet missed Santa when he passed through last Saturday 17th, you’ll get another chance to visit and be photographed with Santa at the Shaggy Chic Boutique this coming Friday December 23rd and Saturday 24th !

Santa loves dogs almost as much as he loves his reindeers, maybe more so in the case of your pets! Have your pooch pose for fun photographs with Santa, and they’re all for free. Spend lots of time browsing our shop to gather a great sack-load of wonderful goodies & last minute stocking-stuffers for your pet. We have Santa outfits, Christmas toys, little jingle bells, holiday treats, and even red long johns for the cold winter nights!

Wishing you and your beloved pets a Happy Hols from all of us at Shaggy Chic Pet Boutique.

 

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Having the foresight to keep a First Aid kit handy for the people we love is one challenge. Keeping one for our pets is something few of us think of, though we ought to.  Here is what you’ll need: a secure bag with good seals and snaps that are waterproof and easy to carry. Pack a splint if you like, but remember that if you pet is ever injured, your key goal is to get them to a veterinarian or an animal hospital.  Your main concern is to have supplies handy that are primarily for minor injuries, cuts and scrapes. You’ll need petroleum jelly to soothe scrapes, anti-bacterial ointment for cuts, styptic power to stop bleeding. You’ll need bandage material, hot and cold packs, a muzzle – so that your beloved pet doesn’t bite you. 

If they are suffering, it won’t matter how much they love you; they may snap at you. You’ll need a small flashlight; tweezers, for thorns and Foxtails; eyedroppers, a towel or blanket, and – most importantly – a current photo, in case you and your pet get separated. For hot weather, you want a drinking bowl.  If you’re planning a hike in unfamiliar woods, call ahead and get information about poisonous snakes and predators in the region as well as some sense of the trails underfoot. You may want to invest in dog-booties, if your pooch can be trained to keep them on. And you’ll want to bring along small amounts of charcoal, hydrogen peroxide – to induce vomiting if there’s been a poisoning.  

Always keep veterinary phone numbers near at hand. Also: poison-control hotline numbers; and (this is extremely important) up-to-date vaccination records. Keep this kit in your house or car at all times!  

Pop in and see what we have. At Shaggy Chic, we make sure to keep your pooches safe from harm with our multi functional, fashionably packaged travel bags. It’s the perfect holiday gift, whether for friends or for yourself, to keep those special pooches you love safe and secure all year round. 

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Not long ago there was a drastic recall of supermarket pet food. Many concerned pet owners began asking if they were doing enough to protect their pooches.  The answer? Make them a home-cooked meal! The best way to monitor your dog’s diet is always to prepare the food yourself. You help yourself and your pet when you do this as often as you can. Be sure to consult your veterinarian, for individual nutritional guidelines she or he can recommend for your pet.  There are also a few guidelines to keep in mind. Don’t feed your dog bones, especially cooked bones. Fragments can become lodged in the digestive tract. Canines who eat bones in the wild have the advantage of consuming hair and hide too, which have been found to “pad” the fragments and help with their passing.   Other foods to avoid that are dangerous for dogs are chocolate, avocados, mushrooms, macadamia nuts, grapes, raisins, onions, garlic

Try one of these recipes, and watch your pup smile. 

In general, dog food should comprise 1/3 protein (from meat, eggs or dairy products) and 2/3 grains and vegetables. 

A Homemade Treat For Your Favorite Pooch

Peanut Butter Cookies 

2 cups whole-wheat flour 
1 tbsp. baking powder 
1 cup peanut butter (chunky or smooth) 
1 cup milk

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375'F. In a bowl, combine flour and baking powder. In another bowl, mix peanut butter and milk, then add to dry ingredients and mix well. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and knead. Roll dough to 1/4 inch thickness and use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes. Bake for 20 minutes on a greased baking sheet until lightly brown. Cool on a rack, then store in an airtight container. Be careful to watch the cookies, as they can burn easily. 

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Do dogs spread germs when they lick us? No! Doggie saliva is actually antiseptic. This is why they lick their cuts and scratches, and it’s the best therapy for them. If you have a scratch on your own skin and they lick it, it heals faster too. This doesn’t mean we have to kiss them on the mouths, of course. That’s a human custom. When dogs lick our cheeks and lips they’re responding to the appeal of a salty taste. You can move them to focus instead on your chin, your neck, or better still your fingertips, and they won’t feel insulted. But isn’t it nice to know, in a world filled with germs, that the risk of a dog “kissing” you on the lips is actually safer than most humans!  

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All of us share our lives with at least one adorable dog. Making them the center of our attention is a natural part of the relationship. Sooner or later, we have a pet in our lives that is so naturally the center of attention, that wherever we go, our neighbors and family, or sometimes complete strangers will make sweet comments. “Oh, your dog’s a little star! “

 

If we hear this often enough, we may start wondering, and even daydreaming….what if our pet has real talent? Is it possible that with the right connections, they might become an actual star on TV, or in the movies? And then make more money than we already do? Is there a place we can take them to find out if they have talent?

 

There are training schools and talent agents. If your pet is clever, as well as cute, and you are ready to be persistent about exploring these options, you will have a fair chance to succeed. Most of the tricks dogs are asked to do on-camera are very simple:  Bow, bark on cue, hide their eyes, wave, and play dead. The more complicated requests involve sneezing on cue, touching a target, backing up. Usually, any smart pooch can master these commands. Not only do we have to train our pet, as their owner, our responsibility is to train ourselves to give simple and clear commands and be consistent with our pet.

 

The most demanding part of the job for a dog in movies does not involve being cute, or precise in their tricks. The really hard part for the pet is staying calm and focused. They will have to be able to perform with precision in strange places, around dozens, or hundreds of unfamiliar people who will be milling around. So, you have to ask yourself if your pet is really up for this, or is this what you want? As with all things involving the animal you love, the important thing is that you need to know your pet’s personality and what their needs are.

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How many of us let our dogs sleep in bed with us? I have three bodies sleeping with me; ranging from 12 pounds to 60 pounds. I have a very comfortable California King bed. I only get to sleep in a space smaller than a twin bed. Douke, who is my pit mix and is the 60 pounder, loves to snuggle in next to me with his head on the pillow and his body plastered against me. Rio, a chi/brussles mix, has to be lifted onto my bed (so I'm encouraging this horrible behavior!!). He sleeps curled against my knees. And Lily, my mini schnauzer, sleeps on the pillows by my head. Danali, my aussie, chow, golden mix, prefers to sleep in her bed on the floor. She wakes me up in the morning by putting her front paws on the bed and licking me awake.

We have a definite routine. I usually am on my computer at night. When I turn the computer off, there is a very tiny ding sound. The minute the dogs hear this ding, they all get up, wait for me to turn off the lights, and then we all trek up the stairs en masse, they wait for me to open the door to "our" bedroom, and then Douke flies onto my bed and makes himself comfortable and waits for me to climb in. Lily and Rio watch my bedroom routine and know when the light in the bathroom is turned off, they head for the bed and wait for me to pick them up and put them on the bed. Then everyone wrestles and bickers for a few minutes until I say, "STOP" and they all go to their favorite spot and settle in for the night. Danali is a lady and does her own thing. She does come by for a huge kiss goodnight.

I think by now it is obvious I am single. Would I allow this if I were married? Only if my mate was on the same page as me and didn't mind furry bodies (other than me) sleeping with him. If he did mind, then I would have the comfiest beds possible for my dogs and they would sleep in the room with us.

My customers and I have had many conversations regarding pets sleeping in our beds. The general consensus among married people is that the husbands don't always like the dogs in bed, while the wives don't mind it at all.

There is a downside to my dogs sleeping with me. My bed has paw prints, shredded fur and soggy chew bones. The biggest plus is waking up to all these happy faces.

 

            

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Not long ago I came across an alarming and tragic statistic. Each year rattlesnakes bite over 15,000 dogs in the United States. Many die, others fall terribly ill from the poison. If you are lucky enough to care for a pooch who survives, it can cost you anywhere between $1,500 and $10,000 dollars to restore them to full health. Anyway you look at it that is one awful bite.

How might we better protect our dogs and ourselves? One way is to be extremely vigilant regarding the back yard and park spaces where we let our pets play. The more open the areas, the better.  Look for well-landscaped spaces where you can see clearly what you four-legged friend is up to in their explorations. Blind patches of deep grass and canyon brush are understandably dangerous. Rattlesnakes are shy creatures and they are not intimidated by the spread of homes into the high hills. They hunt for mice and other small creatures, and can slip deep into our neighborhoods when we’re not looking.

The best protection is to make a partner of your pet in this effort and train them to avoid rattlesnakes. Such training is readily available here in southern California through an organization called “High On Kennels.”

The method is simple and effective. A “neutralized” snake – alive, but surgically deprived of its venom – is placed in a field with your dog. The dogs will wear an electronic collar and be subject to warning prompts as it investigates the creature and becomes familiar with its distinctive sight, sound, and particularly its odor. (Rattlers have a scent, which for dogs, particularly sets it apart from any other snake.) An hour of training works wonders, though it is advised you repeat this training every year, the better to keep your beloved pet on his or her toes.

The cost for such a session is on average $70 dollars, and worth it.

If you want more information visit this website:

www.highonkennels.com

 

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A filmmaker I know of made a short film that co-starred her pooch, Mimi.

There was a lot of action in the film, and little Mimi was a natural in front of the camera, but what was fascinating was how Mimi reacted months later, when her director would replay the DVD on their home television. She would snooze through most of it, but was absolutely riveted at her own performance: Especially when she would hear herself bark, or be emotional!

Many of us watch TV with our pets. Isn’t it fascinating to notice what they react to? Ordinary action – cops chasing robbers, love scenes, moments of quiet dialogue – will just roll along like a noisy brook babbling across the room. But odd things such as extreme close-ups of faces, or unusual voices, or scenes of intense emotion, will get their full attention. If I’m watching a show and the doorbell on the show rings, my dogs run downstairs and bark their heads off. Or, if they hear a dog barking on a show, they start looking around and bark back. Pets who fall asleep in front of a TV often have highly active dreams, and twitch their legs as if running in place.

Scientists who’ve done studies speculate that many dogs, with their highly alert vision, may not see “motion pictures” the way we do. What we watch may look more like a series of frozen pictures to them. Noises from programs may prompt certain hunting dogs to look behind the TV, to see what’s hiding behind.

Dogs are so responsive to scents that they may not become truly devoted TV watchers until somebody comes along and invents Smell-a-Vision. To this day, when I think of a dog watching TV, I always remember the scene in 101 Dalmatians of the puppies glued to the TV watching dog food commercials to the jingle of Canine Crunchies.

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One of the tests of true love centers on how we cope with it when our beloved cuts loose with a wicked fart (and then blames it on the dog). This is also true when it comes to our beloved pets.

If our pooches have been passing gas with a terrible regularity, is there anything we can do about it? The cures are generally the same to how we might cure ourselves.

Doggie “wind” has one of several sources. They may be “wolfing” their food, gobbling air as they swallow too fast. They may be eating the wrong foods – too many sprouts, too many beans. Their overall diet may be of poor quality – cheap dog food, too many leftover scraps.

The last two problems can be solved with a diet high in quality – good fiber, good protein and the best name brands. If your pooch “wolfs” their food (and this is often the case for rescues) what you need to do is feed them their meals in smaller portions, at intervals, so that they don’t rush. The thing to remember is that they are suffering indigestion exactly the way we humans do when we get gassy.

How do we cure that problem in ourselves? Our pets are helped in the same ways. We sell a great dog dish on the market that prevents dogs from wolfing down their food. Wouldn’t it be nice if they invented a dish for us, too?

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