(Family Features) Training a pet can be a rewarding process. It takes some time and patience, but it can also be a way to bond with your pet and help set you both up for a happy life together.
Here’s a hint: treats usually help. Consider these simple tips from the treating experts at the PEDIGREE® DENTASTIX™ and TEMPTATIONS™ brands to help guide the training process. For more information on finding the right treats for your furry friends, visit temptationstreats.com for cats and pedigree.com for dogs.
Be Patient, Start Slow
Remaining patient is key to training your dog or cat. Your pet most likely wants to do right by you, but fully understanding what you’re looking for can take time. Changing behaviors can take weeks to months, depending on how rewarding that behavior has been to your pet. When trying to get your pet to learn to do something different, be repetitive and increase your training time a little bit each day until the new behavior is achieved.
Reward with Treats
There’s nothing wrong with giving your pet a treat when he or she does well, as long as you don’t give too many. This is likely to garner a positive response during training. If you are training your new kitty to use the litter box or not to scratch, try keeping a bag of feline-favorite treats nearby, like TEMPTATIONS Treats. Just one shake of the bag can make your cat come running from anywhere in the house. The more your pet can associate good behavior with rewards, the more likely he or she is to repeat that learned behavior.
Acknowledge Good Behavior
When training your pets to listen or respond, it is important to let them know when they get a command right by acknowledging good behavior. Pets can be quick learners, so it’s up to the owners to be fast with letting them know they did something right. The moment your pets respond on command is the instant you should show them you recognize their good work. A clicker can be an effective way to acknowledge pets’ good behavior by providing a clear sound to tell them, “good job, I’m getting your treat.”
Dogs love to chew and can often mistake shoes or personal items as toys. To keep them away from your throw pillows and other household items, it is important to give them safe, smart pet toys that can also satisfy their need to chew as they mature. In addition to chew toys, you can also try giving your dogs dental chews, like PEDIGREE DENTASTIX Treats. Your dogs may think it’s just a yummy snack, but really it helps to maintain their oral health, while giving them the chewing fix they need. Plus, you’ll be able to get closer to them for hugs and snuggles without bad dog breath getting in the way.
Photos courtesy of Adobe Stock
Find holiday gifts teens, young adults will actually like
(Family Features) One of the best parts of the holidays is being together with those you love, and for many families that time together involves the exchanging of gifts among loved ones young and old. Finding the right gift for everyone can be a challenge, especially if teenagers and young adults are on your shopping list.
It seems like social media feeds are constantly filled with a new tech item, style, pastime or trend, making it more challenging to pick out gifts for the young ones on gift lists. This year, consider some on-trend gift ideas – like Jelly Belly Jelly Beans – to show appreciation for the Gen-Zers in your life with presents and stocking stuffers that can win them over.
New in Tech
As one of the most popular categories of gifts for teens and one that’s always evolving, deciding which devices and gadgets to gift can be hard. Consider your loved ones’ hobbies and interests to make the job easier; for example, if they’re music lovers or podcast fanatics, wireless earbuds or headphones are a perfect option. If social butterflies are on your shopping list, portable phone chargers and smartphone accessories like a pop-out phone grip can make sure they’re one step ahead of their next photo or social post.
For Boba and Candy Lovers
Many Gen-Zers love a good cup of bubble tea or boba swag, so feed their cravings with an option like Jelly Belly Boba Milk Tea jelly beans. With gift boxes, snack bags and more, these delicious treats made for candy lovers provide a perfect balance of tea, tapioca and sweetness in five true-to-life milk tea flavors: Mango, Taro, Matcha, Strawberry and Thai Milk Tea jelly beans. Find these treats at JellyBelly.com where you can purchase online or locate a store near you.
For teens heading to college or young adults venturing out on their own, consider gifting items to spruce up their new spaces. You can give them a helping hand to start their next chapter with fun decor items like throw pillows and blankets or add life to their new homes with stylish wall art or flower subscriptions. For simple reminders of home, consider candles with their favorite scents or aromatherapy diffusers and essential oils to add a touch of calm to the chaos of heading out on their own.
Play to Their Hobbies
Help them embrace their talents and favorite activities whether it’s art, reading, cooking, gaming, playing sports or mastering instruments. New paint kits and supplies can help young Picasso’s take their art to the next level while a new appliance or cookbook can provide an upgrade for avid home chefs.
The Gift of Music
Whether they have a favorite band or are up-and-coming musicians themselves (or both), give the gift of music with fun ways to enjoy their favorite songs. Record players and vinyl records are making a major comeback while portable speakers allow music lovers to take their favorite sounds wherever they go. A subscription to a streaming service can be perfect for casual listeners or, if you’re looking to splurge, consider concert tickets.
From jogging around the neighborhood to exploring nearby parks and trails, outdoor enthusiasts can never have enough gear. Runners are always searching for the latest sneaker launch or fitness tracker to keep on pace with their goals while more casual enjoyers of the outdoors may love a new water bottle, picnic blanket or beach bag.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (girl opening gift)
Getting your pet ready for fall
(Family Features) Pets provide unconditional love to their companions; in return, it’s important to make sure they live happy and healthy lives by providing the best care possible. This means making sure that in addition to food, treats and toys, they receive daily care for their eyes, ears and overall health.
With a desire to bring a dog into his family’s lives, Albert, a Bausch + Lomb employee, rescued a terrier mix named Watson. However, it soon became apparent Watson needed some extra love and care to help protect his eyes and ears from irritation and excess buildup. When finding a remedy proved difficult, Albert worked with veterinarians to develop Project Watson Health Care for Dogs, a comprehensive line of quality products targeting these specific areas.
To help ensure your furry member of the family has the best head to tail health possible, consider these tips.
Schedule Regular Vet Visits
Routine wellness checks are an essential part of your pet’s care. Annual screenings, even if your dog seems healthy, allow your veterinarian to provide vaccines to combat disease and uncover any health issues that may have otherwise gone undiagnosed until symptoms advanced.
Watch Your Pet’s Diet
Feeding your pet a proper diet based on his or her breed, age, size and lifestyle plays a big role in overall health. A balanced diet that includes high-quality food can lead to a shiny coat, healthy skin, bright eyes and may also help strengthen your pet’s immune system, maintain intestinal health, increase mental acuity, regulate weight, keep muscles and joints healthy and more.
Support Clean Ears and Eyes
Often overlooked, the eyes and ears are vital areas to the overall health and wellness of your pet. To help keep these areas free of any buildup of bacteria that may cause irritation, consider an option like the line of Project Watson Health Care Products for Dogs, which includes an eye wash, eyelid wipe, ear wash, ear wipe and supplements made using high-quality and naturally inspired ingredients.
Excessive blinking or pawing at the eyes can be signs of buildup, irritation or infection. Dirt and debris trapped around the eyes can also clump in fur, leading to skin irritation and infections while excessive tear production can lead to fur staining, which can develop an unpleasant odor. Eye wipes can be used daily to relieve staining and remove excess buildup. Washing your dog’s ears may help reduce dirt, debris and wax buildup; help prevent itching; and reduce the chance of infection while keeping ears smelling fresh.
Create an Exercise Routine
Walks, games in the backyard and social time with other pets can help keep your furry friend in good physical condition. While different breeds and species often have different needs, adequate activity can provide benefits beyond the physical, including reducing boredom, which can potentially lead to anxiety or destructive behaviors.
In addition to regular vaccinations, ensure your pet is up to date on parasite prevention. This includes fleas, ticks, mites, heartworm and more which can cause reactions ranging from mild to severe (or even fatal in some cases of heartworm or Lyme disease). Look for pests and skin abnormalities when grooming your pet and contact your vet if your pet excessively scratches, chews or licks his or her fur or ears, or persistently shakes his or her head.
For more solutions to keep your four-legged friend happy and healthy, speak with your veterinarian or visit tryprojectwatson.com.
Bausch + Lomb
6 ways to weatherize your home
(Family Features) A changing of the seasons may mean adjustments to your routine and updates to your home decor, but it also brings maintenance and upgrade opportunities for homeowners. As temperatures shift and seasonal weather rolls in, weatherizing can help you conserve energy, save money and improve comfort all while protecting the exterior (and interior) of your home from the elements.
This checklist from the door experts at Masonite, a global industry leader in interior and exterior doors and door systems, can help you keep the outdoors out.
Have Heating and Cooling Systems Inspected
Turn to the professionals to have your furnace and air conditioning inspected before temperatures change. They can make sure the system is working properly so you can have heat or cool air when you need it while conducting safety checks to keep your family safe from carbon monoxide leaks and other hazards. Plus, having your system inspected before any extreme weather means necessary repairs can be completed before you’re relying on it for comfort.
Your trees and shrubs might provide a beautiful aesthetic in spring and summer, but winter weather can turn them into hazards for your home. Heavy winds and snow and ice buildup can cause branches to break off and damage roofs, windows and more. Some experts recommend waiting until leaves fall to prune; be sure to research the types of trees on your property and understand the best maintenance methods to keep them healthy without putting your home at risk.
Replace Your Front Door
Living in a comfortable, energy-efficient home starts with keeping out rain, wind, cold and heat. For a protected and weather-proof home, consider replacing your front door with a premium alternative like the Masonite Performance Door System, designed to keep the outside out and the inside in. Available with a variety of exterior fiberglass doors in a multitude of styles, colors and finishes, including multiple glass options, the system’s industry-leading 4-Point Performance Seal provides superior energy efficiency, performance and comfort. Plus, the system is backed by a 10-year limited full replacement warranty and available at home improvement retailers nationwide. Additional benefits include:
- A square edge door fits perfectly into its frame for a solid, energy efficient seal.
- A self-adjusting sill maintains its seal, adapting to imperfect or changing conditions.
- Adaptive weatherstripping made of high-end, low-wick memory foam snaps back into shape when bent or twisted, stopping air and water in its tracks.
- Enhanced corner pads stop upward water pressure and form a tight seal between sill, door panel and frame.
While it’s a bit of a dirty job, clearing gutters of debris and buildup like leaves and twigs keeps the system running as it should. Gutters can’t properly drain when they’re blocked, which means water isn’t being diverted properly. This leads to water spilling over and can cause problems ranging from mold or mildew to larger issues like foundation damage.
Secure Outdoor Furniture
It may cause a bit of sadness putting patio furniture away for the season, but it’s an important step in protecting both the furniture itself and your home from high winds that can pick up during colder months or increased moisture during the rainy season. Some pieces may need stored away while others can simply be covered, but make sure to clean and carefully dry to avoid mold and mildew growth beforehand. Take advantage of the opportunity to thoroughly clean grease and grime off grill grates, repair damaged furniture items and clear the entire area of dirt and debris so everything’s ready to be dusted off and enjoyed in the spring.
Hire a Roof Inspector
The roof is a critical component in keeping your home structurally sound. A professional can examine your roof for damage and assess anything that may need fixed or replaced ahead of winter weather or rain. This examination includes shingles, soffit, fascia, chimneys, gutters and more along with a check for signs of interior damage like water stains, mold, holes or wood rot.
Find more ways to weatherize your home and keep the outdoors out by visiting Masonite.com/Masonite-Performance-Door-System.
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