In with the New, Out with the Old

Happy New Year! As we prepare for the year ahead, everyone sets new goals, plans adventures, and declutters the house to make room for the next twelve months.  When it comes to our pets, we need to be going through their things as well because it helps to keep your cat or dog healthy, safe, and happy. Below is a list of things to consider throwing away or repairing.

1.       Nail trimmers that may be dull. Sharp nail trimmers make an already difficult task slightly easier.  You can sharpen the blade or just toss them and get a new pair.

2.       Busted toys. Toys that are broken have the potential to hurt or injure your cat or dog. If the toy has loose strings, sharp edges, or pieces that may be easy to swallow, toss them and buy new ones for your pet. 

3.       Scratched up litter boxes. Litter boxes that have scratches or imperfections may trap bacteria and odor.  This is a perfect environment for the bacteria to set up shop, and remember that your pet can transfer the bacteria to you.  Consider buying a new litter box each year.

4.       Plastic bowls. Plastic tends to be naturally greasy. Some cats can suffer from feline acne and plastic bowls tend to irritate them more than ceramic or metal. Similar to the litter boxes, the food bowls can be scratched or have areas where bacteria can settle and cause problems for the pets. Dogs may not have as many issues with this, but it’s still a good idea to toss if they have been chewed up. 

5.       Expired medications. It is tempting to have a stock of medications but if any are expired, they need to be thrown away. Some medications can go past their date, and the potency may be affected.  Giving your pet expired medication usually won’t work or, in some cases, might make the problem worse.   Expired medications can also be toxic. Don’t take the chance.

6.       Retractable leashes. These leashes look convenient and simple to use but they can be one of most dangerous pet related items in your house. You don’t have complete control over your dog when they are stretched out in front of you. You don’t know what danger might be right around the corner.  Often these leashes have built in breaks on them, but if those fail, the only way to stop your pet is by grabbing a nylon rope, and many people have reported skin burns from these leashes.  Our best recommendation is to toss them. Get a sturdy leash that won’t injure you or your dog.

7.       Smelly collars. Collars should be replaced if they get stinky or so dirty where a run through the washing machine doesn’t improve them.  The collar sits on your pet’s neck all the time. It is another perfect environment for bacteria to grow and cause future skin problems for your pet. 

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