National Night Out, National Dog Day, and Hurricane PrepPetChatz
- National Night Out: This year, National Night Out (NNO) is Tuesday, August 2, 2016 (except in Texas and a few other select areas where it will be celebrated Tuesday, October 4th) and is designed to be a community building activity (we certainly seem to need some of that these days!!!) for cities, towns and neighborhoods across the country. This “Night Out” is celebrated in Canada – and on US military bases across the globe. The NNO organization also has a dog walker training program called Dog Walkers Watch where you can receive training on how to be observant and part of an overall community commitment to safety and security – and report suspicious activity and behavior. Let’s face it, these folks are all over neighborhoods and usually have instant access to smartphones the commensurate with keeping others informed about activities and behavior they observe. Additionally, during these celebrations, you should always make sure your furry friends are safe. If you leave them home alone, wouldn’t it be great to check in? With any summer time celebration that becomes bigger, fireworks are sure to be a part of these events – and it is always good to make sure your homebound buddies stay calm. Learn more about the NNO organization and the Dog Walkers Watch program.
- National Dog Day: August is a good month for humans and their four-legged friends. August 26th is National Dog Day every year and is celebrated to (a quote from their web site): “National Dog Day celebrates all breeds, pure and mixed and serves to help galvanize the public to recognize the number of dogs that need to be rescued each year, either from public shelters, rescues and pure breed rescues. National Dog Day honors family dogs and dogs that work selflessly to save lives, keep us safe and bring comfort. Dogs put their lives on the line every day – for their law enforcement partner, for their blind companion, for the disabled, for our freedom and safety by detecting bombs and drugs and pulling victims of tragedy from wreckage.” NDD is also a great time for each dog owner to give their favorite hound a little something extra – a special meal (steak anyone?), a special treat (the Mad Chatter has learned that there is even ice cream made especially for dogs – film at 11:00!), or, perhaps most important, a little more special time with you. Talk them for a walk, take them to get groomed, take them to a dog park to play with current and new friends or whatever else you can think of to enrich their lives. If you can’t be there, get them a PetChatz® – the perfect way to “be there from anywhere” on their big day (or any day for that matter). To learn more about National Dog Day (and to see some really cool pictures) click this link to get to the NDD home page: nationaldogday.com.
- Hurricane prep – for pets: While not every Pack Member lives in areas impacted by hurricanes, as a public service the Mad Chatter wants to offer some tips on how to protect your best friends if you are in a hurricane impacted zone or are in an area where some other calamity may strike – like earthquakes in CA or tornadoes in the Midwest. If you have a plan for the human members of your household, it is imperative that you replicate that for your pets. If you do not have an emergency plan and live in an area where these things occur, please be prepared as lack of planning can be disastrous for your pet – and for you if something happens to them. Here are a few tips we recommend:
- Create your plan – and communicate it to all family members as well as folks at your destination
- Have a “go bag” ready – this should have water, food, leashes, collars, harnesses, waste pick-up (or litter for your kitties), flashlights, batteries and current ownership and medical records. Make sure any food or records are in water tight containers to avoid damage or contamination
- Identification – make sure all tags are up to date with contact information and if your pet has a chip, verify that all of your contact information and any emergency contact info is accurate
- Keep your pet crated or on a leash as the situation deteriorates. If an emergency evacuation is needed, trying to find a frightened pet could be the difference between easy and hard
- If you do have to react, do so with calm and focus – panicking will not help you or your furry friends
- Know your pathway to safety – and make sure you list pet friendly accommodations or shelters along your route. This can help prevent any challenges with how to be mobile with your furries – and you will always know where safe harbor might be!
- Be “neighborly” – get to know a trustworthy neighbor or friend who you can be pet buddies with. Give them a copy of your plan (including where the go bag is) and if you are not available when things go sideways, they will know how to help
- Keep a current phot handy (with smart phones, this should not be too hard!!) – in case you become separated and need help in finding your pet
Always remember that your pets do get afraid – and they are looking to you to make sure they stay safe