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Well-Made Goods for Dogs & Cats
Well-Made Goods for Dogs & Cats

Olive Blog

Information for you and your dog

  • Airline travel with a dog - making the skies friendly for your pup

    Flying with a dog can be easy if you prepare well

    Earlier this year we picked up our new puppy, Zane, from California. Driving was not an option. A 9-week old puppy in a car from Sacramento to Seattle would be just too stressful for all of us! I knew we would need a pet reservation, a health certificate, a soft-sided pet carrier, and pay a pet fee. So these are the basics, but each airline has their own unique set of rules, as I discovered. Note that these guidelines are for pet companions; service or emotional support dogs have a different set of rules.

    Before You Fly

    Here are the general, big picture requirements that all airlines adhere to. We have also given you a heads up on things to verify with your airline when planning air travel with your dog.

    Dogs cannot travel alone.

    Whether in the cabin or in the hold, someone must accompany your pet. As far as the airline is concerned, your beloved dog is no more than luggage to them and you cannot send luggage on a plane you are not on. So if your dog must travel without you, she should be transported by a licensed and approved pet transportation company.

    Your dog must be old enough to travel.

    The US standard is 8 weeks. However, some carriers, such as Delta, require your dog to be at least 10 weeks of age.

    Your dog must have a clean bill of health.

    You will need to have a full physical and updated immunization record dated within a certain amount of time before travel, usually within 10 days of travel. Keep in mind that your health certificate is only good for 30 days and must cover both ends of your journey. If your trip lasts longer than 30 days, you’ll need to get another one in the state you’re visiting.

    Ask for a health certificate (officially called a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection) that says your dog is fit to travel and is up to date on her vaccinations. Also, ask your veterinarian to print out your dog’s shot record. Not every airline requires a health certificate, so ask. However, it is better to have it and not need it than to be stuck without one while on the road.

    Have your health certificate in case the airline requires it. Not all do, but be sure you are prepared.

    It must be safe for your dog to travel on a plane.

    Due to the heartbreaking case with the French Bulldog on United earlier this year, many airlines have restricted short-nose breeds from flying on their planes due to respiratory concerns. Talk to the airline before booking a seat to ensure your pup can join you.

    Additionally, if your dog will be in the hold, there are restrictions on when and where your dog can fly. Since some terminal facilities and the airplane hold are NOT protected against outside temperatures, know the local weather. Flying your dog in the hold to/from/through Chicago in January or Phoenix in August may not be an option, nor would you want it to be.

    Dogs in hardsided crates on their way to be loaded into the airplane hold

    Airlines restrict the number of pets on any given flight.

    This means not every flight will have room for your pet. It varies by airline and location on the plane (in the hold vs. in the cabin). Be sure to make your dog's reservation at the same time you book your flight to be sure there is space.  Most airlines require a call to make the pet reservation. The airline we usually fly allows only 2 pets in the cabin and the flight we wanted was already booked. We flew Southwest, which allows up to 6 pets in the cabin. Be aware that many airlines will not allow you to book a pet into the cargo hold more than 10 days before your trip.

    In-cabin travel is subject to size and weight restrictions.

    These vary between airlines, but most require that your dog and carrier together not weigh more than 20 pounds. Dogs over 20 pounds will have to travel in the cargo hold of the plane.  As the cargo hold needs to be pressurized  Not all airlines offer this option since the cargo hold needs to be pressurized to allow pet travel. When you are planning a trip with a larger dog,

    Of greater concern, each airline has limits to the size of the carrier allowed in the cabin. It must fit under the seat in front of you, which dictates the size of the bag. Your dog must be able to lie down, stand up, and turn around comfortably in the carrier. This is a tricky one, as we learned. We flew out of a small airport, where most of the planes were regional jets…meaning the allowed carrier size was much smaller, too small for our puppy. JetBlue and Southwest were our only options for full-size jets, as it turned out.

    Does the jet allow enough room for your pup?

    You will need to pay a separate pet fee.

    When you check in, you will need to pay an additional $95 - $150 for your pet.  This is the fee each way, so factor these costs into your decision to bring your pup along with you on a vacation.  Be sure to factor in additional time to check in your pet at the counter since you will not be able to check them in online or at a kiosk.

    International flights are especially difficult to travel with your dog.

    Most airlines have restrictions on how long a dog can be in a crate safely. Any flight over 10 hours would be especially difficult for any dog! Additionally, you and the airlines must follow individual laws for bringing a dog into another country. As such, you may not be able to take your dog with you to certain destinations. Check each airline as these restrictions differ. Find out what regulations are in place for bringing your dog into your destination country, then be sure to have any necessary paperwork on hand when you check in.

    Check out (http://www.sheknows.com/pets-and-animals/articles/974085/airlines-that-allow-pets-in-cabin) for some details on 8 major airlines that can help begin your planning.

    Day of Travel

    So you booked your flight and are ready to travel! Be sure to keep your dog’s collar – with identifying tags – on at all times. If your little one wriggles free along the way, you want to get them back ASAP. Here are some suggestions for making the actual flight easier when bringing a dog in the cabin with you:

    Get the right carrier and make sure your dog is comfortable in it.

    You can select a hard sided or soft sided carrier for your trip. Most airlines allow a slightly taller size for a soft-sided carrier as long as it can squish to fit under the seat. There are many different types, so shop around to see what’s best for you and your dog. Remember, your dog needs to be able to lie down, stand up and turn around comfortably in the carrier. If the person checking you in does not think the dog will be comfortable, they can and will deny your dog from traveling in the cabin. Additionally, be sure to get your dog accustomed to the carrier BEFORE the day of travel. Throw some treats in it, feed in it, etc. so that the dog is comfortable in the space.

    Prepared for the trip and en route. Note: not all flight attendants will allow the puppy in your lap like this.

    Bring an empty water bottle and a small bowl for water.

    A collapsible bowl, like the Canvas Collapsible Water Bowl from Found My Animal, is great for flights. It folds up small for travel but still offers plenty of capacity for your dog. Take the empty bottle through security then fill up before boarding. That way you will not need to wait to beverage service to keep your dog hydrated.

    Found My Animal's Collapsible Travel Bowl is easy to pack for a flight so you can keep your dog hydrated

    Invest in potty pads, even for an adult dog.

    Accidents happen - line the carrier with a potty pad so there is no leakage. All airports have pet relief facilities of some kind. Where they are and how convenient they are will vary from airport to airport. Check out DogJaunt.com/guides/airport-pet-relief-areas/ for information about pet relief areas in airports all over the country. They also include lots of useful info about traveling with pets in general.

    If there is no pet relief area once you are past security, potty pads can be a life saver. Dash into the bathroom and put the pad down for a last potty break before boarding.

    Get a “high value” treat or toy to keep your pup entertained

    • A favorite cuddly toy with the scent of home to keep your dog calm. We used a small towel from his old home (for the scent) and a Simply Fido Stuffless toy with a crinkle noise inside to cuddle. It is still one of his favorite toys!

     

    Zane's first toys are still his favorites: Simply Fido Stuffless Lion and Planet Dog Woof Treat Dispensing Ball

    • Interactive treat dispensing toy. Zane got a Planet Dog Woof ball as it was small enough for him to roll around in his carrier. We also had a clean bone with some peanut butter smeared inside – but make sure there are no peanut allergies on the plane before pulling it out.
    • Treats for the toy or to distract if your dog gets fussy/whiny. For this, we used a portion of his kibble as a treat and just factored it into his daily feeding.

    Dog wipes – for you and your dog

    We brought some human wipes for us and trueblue Super Fresh Body & Paw Wipes in a zip-lock baggie for Zane. Accidents happen, and you want an easy, healthy way to clean up any messes on your dog.

    TrueBlue Super Fresh Body & Paw Wipes clean and moisturize the skin and coat with macadamia nut oil

    Poo bags

    For containing the messes along the way. You will only need a few - Earth Rated Lavender-scented Bags with Handles are a great option. They can help cover the scent (very important on a plane!) and the handles make closing up the bag fast and easy.

    Earth Rated Lavender Scented Poo Bags with Handles for easy and fragrant clean up on the plane

    Keep your dog’s vaccination record

    And any relevant health information easily accessible for check in.

    A back up of your dog’s kibble

    You should usually travel with 2 meals worth. If you get stuck along the way to your final destination, it is always good to have your dog’s food readily available.

    One final note: Sedation

    There’s a lot of debate about whether it’s safe to sedate a dog while flying. The American Veterinary Medical Association advises against it, saying, “It is recommended that you DO NOT give tranquilizers to your pet when traveling by air because it can increase the risk of heart and respiratory problems. Short-nosed dogs and cats sometimes have even more difficulty with travel.”

    If your dog is especially nervous about flying, talk to your vet for the best option. There are a variety of ways to calm a dog without medication. Your vet may offer one you have not tried.

    And absolutely do NOT give your dog any medication for a flight without talking to your vet first.

    If you are introducing something new into your dog’s diet, whether a supplement or medication, talk to your vet about giving it a trial run before you get on the plane. The last thing you want is a bad reaction mid-flight. Test it out at home to avoid problems in flight. If anything goes wrong, you can get your dog into the vet quickly and safely.

    If you find that your dog really cannot fly without heavy medication, maybe they should just enjoy a doggy vacation at home while you are out of town.

  • Non-Chemical Flea Killers (yes, there is such a thing)

    Natural flea and tick control for your dog Summer time is itchy time for dogs, but you can help...naturally.

    Here comes summer!  While we love this season, our dogs tend to get 'itchier’ as heat, humidity, pollen, grass, and, of course, fleas contribute to irritation. And it goes without saying that a flea on your dog, probably means more in your house. But is your only defense, nasty chemicals that potentially may harm your pet? Heck, no! We have several options for all natural, non-chemical flea and tick protection for your dog.

    The first step in a total and natural flea & tick control routine is a good flea and tick bath

    All natural flea and tick protection shampoo for your dog Start with a clean, flea- and tick-free dog

    Wash your dog with Wondercide Repel Shampoo Bar for Pets.  It is an effective, completely biodegradable and safe all natural treatment that wards away insects with aromatic essential oils. The coconut oil and citronella oil kill and prevent fleas in all stages, including eggs, larva, pupae, and adult fleas.  Neem is a tree native to the Indian subcontinent, used for thousands of years. Scientific studies have found these plants contain compounds that have wound healing properties. Neem oils and extracts are anti-inflammatory, gentle and non-drying. Use it routinely at bath time for a clean, soft coat and lasting protection from insect bites. It's gentle enough to use several times a week for dry itchy skin.  And shampoo bars are much easier to use than liquid shampoo when trying to wash a wriggling pet.  Made in the USA.

    Follow up with an all natural flea and tick topical spray for your dog and your home

    Use Wondercide Natural Flea, Tick & Mosquito Control for Pets + Home It is a potent, all natural flea and tick treatment for dogs and cats that is an effective, safe alternative to potentially harmful chemical pesticides. Available in an easy-on spray, this one-two punch both repels and kills unwanted predators. Pets + Home stops itching & scratching, comforts dry skin & hot spots, leaves coat shiny and healthy, and even eliminates mange. If you like hiking with your pet or running them in a park, you will LOVE this spray: it kills pests like fleas and ticks on contact and prevents them from hitching a ride on your pet when you go out and about. Pets + Home is also designed for use inside your home and can be safely sprayed on bedding, upholstery, furniture, and flooring.  Best part, Pets + Home is totally non-toxic, DEET free, and made in the USA.

    Neem is helpful for dogs with more sensitive reactions to flea and tick bites

    Consider Ark Naturals Neem “Protect” Spray, an environmentally friendly and gentle formula for pets including dogs, cats, and horses. Use it for animals with skin and coat issues including insect bites and skin and coat irritation. The active ingredients are neem and citronella. Regular use helps to soothe and reduce itching and dermatitis caused by insect bites. Made in USA.

    With all of these products, you can keep your dog chemical and insect free this summer, so you can both enjoy the season fully.

    Stop the annoying itch f summer with non-chemical, safe flea and tick protection No fleas means more summer fun

  • Dog ID Tags - Have Fun Keeping Your Dog Safe

    Why Buy a Dog ID Tag?

    1. Bring Your Dog Home Safe

    In 2012, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ surveyed pet owners about lost dogs and cats, and discovered the following, which highlights the importance of ID tags to ensure the quick return of lost pets:

    • Only 15% of pet owners reported a lost dog or cat during the previous five years.
    • 93% of dogs reported lost were eventually returned to their homes safely
    • 49% of dog owners found their dog by searching the neighborhood
    • 15% percent of the dogs were recovered because they were wearing an ID tag or had a micro-chip
    • Only 6% of dog owners found their lost dog at a shelter

    1. Start your search immediately within your neighborhood by walking/driving around, putting up posters, and utilizing social media to enlist others to help search. Be sure to carry your cell phone so people can reach you when they see your pup.

    2. Check local shelters regularly, from the first day your pet is lost. Calling is the first step, but be sure to go in person as well. Your pup could have lost their collar along the way and have no identification to help shelter workers reunite you. And know that everyone can get a breed wrong – many shelters assume a lab, shepherd or pit mix when they get a dog in.

    In both cases, the search is made significantly easier if your dog has a tag, a tattoo, or been microchipped. Tattoos and microchips provide permanent ways to identify your dog. Shelters, veterinarians, and research laboratories know to look for these identifiers when animals are brought to their facilities. Tattoos should be applied by veterinarians or trained specialists who will ink the code for you. Note that you will need to list your dog with one of the many tattoo registry programs around the country.

    Microchips are tiny electronic chips embedded under your dog’s skin. They require special scanners to read the information on the chip, so while most veterinarians, shelters, and research laboratories have these on hand to scan strays for identification, but do not assume that all do. As such, it is essential to use an ID tag worn on your dog’s collar, even if your dog is microchipped or tattooed. ID tags are the fastest, easiest way for ANYONE to find you if your dog gets lost.

    Make sure the tag contains your most current information

    Every engraved dog tag will offer space for at least your phone number. Be sure to use your mobile number here, as you will be probably out searching for your dog when the call comes in! If there is room for a second number, add your home phone, the cell phone a household member, or a close friend. Be sure to keep this information current – both on the tag and any registries for microchips or tattoos. Just a few minutes of your time to update registry information or investing in a new tag when your number changes is a small price to pay for the piece of mind of having your best friend home safe. If there is additional room, consider adding the following: your puppy’s name, your address, your dog’s microchip #, any medical conditions, or dietary restrictions.

    2. Express your or your dog’s personality

    As you go to purchase your dog’s tag, there are a number of options for ID tags and charms (a tag which contains no personal information, but it looks very cute on your dog’s collar) on the market today.

    Materials can range from plastic to resin to a variety of metals. Tags can hang from or slide onto a collar, depending on which you and your dog prefer. A hanging tag can be used as dog jewelry, while a slide on tag, often referred to as a silent tag, can reduce the noise of various tags clanging against each other. Many offer fun taglines or sayings or symbols to help express your dog’s personality. Is your dog a WIGGLEBUT? Or a LUCKY MUTT? Or maybe loves to give FREE KISSES? Do they LIVE to chase balls? If so, there is a tag for them!

    You can even get a matching necklace for yourself to show your love for your dog.

  • 7 Cute Eco-Friendly Dog Toys that You'll Both Love

    Play to build a bond with your dog

    There is no greater reward for your dog than for you to spend some quality play time with them. And now there are a great assortment of cute eco-friendly toys that both you and your dog will love and that will strengthen the bond between you.  Made from safe, sustainable materials like 100% organic cotton canvas, latex-free natural rubber, and eco-friendly hemp, you will feel good about giving these toys to your dog.  And they are cute enough you won’t want to hide them when people come over.

    #1 Cotton Rope Starfish dog toy is a durable rope toy designed for pulling and tugging, which your dog will love.  And it helps keep your pets’ teeth and gums clean naturally, which you will love. Teething puppy? Wet with water or broth and freeze to help soothe teething pain.  These toys from Harry Barker are machine-washable and made from 100% azo-free recycled cotton yarns.

    Rope Dog Toy Starfish
    Organic Cotton Rope Starfish from Harry Barker

     

    #2 Larry the Lion is an all natural, hand-tied rope toy made from cotton thread and azo free vegetable dyes. Super durable and safe, it will naturally start to fray and floss teeth. For teething puppies, you can dip the toy's legs in chicken broth or water, freeze it, and give it to your dog to soothe and massage its gums.  Plus, for each sale, Jax and Bones donates a portion of each sale to The Rescue Train, a non-profit, no-kill organization dedicated to saving animal lives.

    Leo the Lion Organic Cotton Rope Dog Toy from Jax & Bones

    Leo

    #3 Felted Wool Stingray dog toy will provide hours of fun, massages your dog’s gums and teeth, and provide a colorful accent in your home.  These oh-so-cute toys are handmade by artisans in Nepal with 100% natural wool and colored with natural anzo free dyes.  Colorful and durable, they are naturally attractive to dogs, thanks to the special wooly scent derived from the inherent oils of wool fleece. Wool is a sustainable material that is digestible, which is great if you have a dog that accidentally ingests parts of toys.  Lollycadoodle toys are proudly made in a fair-trade facility.

    Colorful Boiled Wool Stingrays from Lollycadoodle

    Felted

    #4 Eco Quacker dog toy is a fun and playful duck your dog will love.  It has a non-toxic chirping noisemaker, activated by shaking the toy rather than chewing it.  It is double-stitched inside a heavy-duty protective pouch in the tail to make it last. The duck itself is made of dense hemp and filled with organic wool, so you know it is safe.  Made by Honest Pet Products, a company that economically supports and emotionally encourages the hardworking people with cognitive and developmental disabilities that hand make their complete line of toys.

    Eco Quaker Dog Toy made with Hemp

    Eco

    #5 Orbee-Tuff® Strawberry dog toy is perfect for the backyard sports enthusiast. Like the original, your dog will love chasing this bright yellow ball.  You will love that it is made from Planet Dog's award-winning Orbee-Tuff® compound, a non latex, non toxic, phthalate- and BPA-free plastic, and much safer on your dog's teeth.  As if that is not enough, 2% of every sale goes to the Planet Dog Foundation, whose mission is to promote and support assistance dog organizations that enhance and save people's lives.

    Strawberry Treat Dispensing Toy from Planet Dog

    Strawberry

    #6 Dash Dog Frisbee dog toy is aerodynamic, so it easier for you to throw and the center hole makes easier for your dog to catch, and the soft foam core won’t hurt your dog’s mouth of your hands.   It is made from West Paw Design’s Zogoflex Air®, their latex-free, non-toxic, BPA and phthalate-free proprietary plastic blend which can be recycled over and over again.  West Paw Design is a certified B Corp, who hold an above-and-beyond commitment to healthier employees, sustainable practices, transparency, and accountability.

    Aerodynamic Dash Dog Frisbee from West Paw Design

    Dash

    #7 Stuffless Lucy Bunny dog toy is intentionally left stuffless.  Instead, it contains a non-toxic rubber squeaker and crinkly material to provide a satisfying crunch when squeezed that will amuse your pup.  If you're tired of picking up pet toy-innards then this toy is bound to please you. Simply Fido makes these toys with non-toxic certified organic materials, dyed with natural extracts from plants and minerals.  It is all-natural, unbleached, untreated and unprocessed.

    Stuffless Bunny Dog Toy from Siply Fido

    Stuffless

  • The Human - Dog Bond

    Dog's have long been considered '[wo] man's best friend'. Without a doubt, ours have certainly earned the title. And with Fur Mother's Day on the horizon as well as it being National Pet Month it's a good time to stop and extol the depth of our human- dog bond. They give us so much and ask so little. So where do we start....

    Companionship Is it me? Or do most people crave the company of their animal companion over people as they 'mature'? How refreshing to not say a word and a mere gesture - a raise of the brow - can confirm the simplest understanding (try that with your significant other, eh?)

    Unconditional Love Enough Said.

    Compassion The age of internet has ushered in so many conveniences, but at the same token unleashed an avalanche of unchecked vitriol. Seems we've lost our compass for compassion. Impressively and thankfully, the digital age hasn't changed our fur-legged buds a bit.

    Safe to say, fall in love with a dog and your life is changed - so much for the better.

     

  • How to Fit Your Dog for A New Collar

    FITTING YOUR DOG FOR A NEW COLLAR

    First and foremost, keep in mind that all collars run a little different. Here are a few simple guidelines for determining your dog's neck size. For corresponding collar size please consult the sizing tab provided. If in doubt, please contact us - we're more than happy to assist you!

    STEP 1.
    You will need a measuring tape to determine your dog's neck size. If you don't have a measuring tape a string and straight rule will also work.

    STEP 2.
    Place the tape measure around your dog's neck where its collar naturally sits and allow a little room for comfort. You should be able to easily fit two fingers (flat) between the measuring tape and your dog's neck. Record the measurement in inches or centimeters. This is the NECK SIZE.



    STEP 3.
    Select your dog's collar size on the NECK SIZE measurement falling within the ranges provided by the maker. You'll find a sizing tab for each/every collar. The measurements provided are the inner circumference of the collar - not the collar length.

     

     

     

  • Q & A with Olive CEO - Part I

    I sat down with Gina Quiroga, co-founder of Olive, hoping to get to better know the (human) faces behind Olive. I've been a loyal customer of Olive for some time and have grown increasingly curious who's behind the cute little green dog. Needless to say, I was pretty psyched when Gina suggested I stop in for for a little Q & A. Olive is a short drive from me, just 20 minutes north of downtown Austin, sequestered on 3 acres in what was seemingly "country" before the now-oh-so-common suburbanization of anything remotely close to Austin. Once you get past the tex-mex restaurants and steak house chains you're immediately taken in by the beauty of the juxtaposition of open land complete with roaming deer, long-eared hare, and the random road runner or two.

    Gina is one of those people you like immediately. Her smile is super warm and she's got an impish twinkle in her eyes. We met in the second building situated on the rear of the lot, which is home to Olive's office and inventory. There I also met Maya, a standard poodle (pictured above as a puppy), Bert, a shih tzu, and Frankie, also a poodle and most recent addition who I later learned was found near the airport. Everyone was on their best behavior and spent most the visit snoozing on a rather wide assortment beds except for Gina who sat upright facing me.

    Q: So, why Olive?

    A: Do you mean the character or the concept?

    Q: I was thinking mostly the little green dog, but by answering the latter you'll spare yourself another question.

    A: Ok, here goes. When we formed the company in 2006, we knew we wanted a mascot of sorts and truthfully were originally thinking something a little more retro - like Rin-Tin-Tin. We liked the little green dog because she/he's very relatable and doesn't imply a specific breed or type of dog. The name was a suggestion of our then design team Modern Dog.

    The concept came out of our love for dogs and design and our desire to offer pet products that were a little more sustainable. Quite frankly, there's a lot of crap on the market and we thought we'd take a stab at offering an alternative to this.

    Q: Has this been a challenge?

    A: Yes and no. The market was ready for this and consumer demand has driven the process. What was challenging initially was finding pet products that fit the bill and met our standards. There wasn't much in the way of well-made pet goods. We blurred the lines quite a bit, offering many people products for pets.

    Q: Can you give me an example?

    A: Sure. Are you familiar with a line called Eazy Bean? (I nodded no.) Well, eazy bean makes very cool bean-bag like cushions for people that we initially sold as pet beds. The only problem was they were pricey. Too pricey for the pet market. So that was part of our learning curve.

    Q: But it's must be easier now? There's tons of green stuff on the market.

    A: Yes and no. You're right there are many 'green' products on the market, but sadly most don't conform to sustainable design or, what we call, "well-made goods for dogs & cats." Fortunately, the revitalized arts and crafts movement has taken over in ways the green initiative might have missed the mark. Many goods crafted here in the US and in other parts the globe are supremely made. There no question they're ethically made too because most instances the maker is also the seller. Our craftspeople are just like us, small operators hoping to reach a wider market. It's very satisfying to partner with them in their journey.

  • Wooftastic Gifts At Every Price

    Under $20: 1. Catnip Carrot 2. Bone Dog Toy 3. Fish Food Mat

    Under $50: 1. Bauer Ring Bowl 2. Rocket Dog Toy 3. Initial ID Ta

    Under $100: 1. Snowflake Sweater 2. Wagwear Carrier 3. Utility Apron

    Under $200: 1. The Pet Basket 2. Plaid Soho Throw 3. Hemp Pet Bed

     

     

  • The Holidays Are HERE!

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