|Pet products roundup |
Pet Remedy plug – in diffuser and spray
The plug in diffuser / air freshener is not a new idea, but we like this new version sent to us by Pet Remedy as an all natural alternative. The plug in and spray use a relaxing combination of valerian, vetivert, sweet basil and sage, which are known as calming essential oils which relax and calm. Unlike some chemical alternatives, these have no sedative effect, just a gentle, relaxing feel.
The manufacturer’s say that this combination works by mimicking the affects of GABA, which is a natural neurotransmitter which calms nerves.
We’d like to have tested this better perhaps during firework season, or with the arrival of a new pet, but we did find the animals around this seemed particularly peaceful while it was in use, and it seems to have a gentle effect on humans, too! The scent is vaguely medicinal and quite herbal, clean and not unpleasant. The box says one diffuser will fill 1 large room for 6 weeks. We found it lasted slightly longer, and lingered through a couple of rooms, so the product looks like good value. The calming spray is simply a milder, spray version, which also seems to enhance our pets good moods, although hasn’t been tested (by us) on an aggressive dog.
See www.petremedy.co.uk for more details and stockists
This one is such a simple idea, and yet so clever. Grippy Leads sent us a trial version earlier in the year, which we have been using on a middle aged but slightly crackers Border Collie ever since. Our version was a natty red, white and blue striped number. The idea is almost ludicrously obvious – it is a sturdy lead, but with stitched loops all the way up. This means when you are drawing your dog closer; next to roads or in situations where other dogs are too close, you simply slip your hand into a lower loop, instead of wrapping the lead round and round your wrist as so many of us do. From a grip perspective, it works really well, and our tester was very impressed with the idea – no more rope burns around the wrist when the dog bolts, or squashed hands, and the fabric is tough, but comfortable to hold.
It’s been in use for some time, and is showing no signs of wear; the clip is still secure, and the grip is still comfortable, and the RRP is very reasonable as well. Made by a small British company, the Grippy Lead is an innovative little product which will go far.
'Handbags and Poobags: Tales of a Soho Boxer Dog' by Alice Wright
We haven’t finished this yet, but this is a biographical account of the changes brought to the author’s life by a runty Boxer named Basil. A highflying couple living and working in London decide to cement their relationship with a new puppy, unaware that they would be changing their lives forever. A fast moving, sweet tale about Soho’s favourite boxer that any truly obsessed dog owner will immediately love.
Available as a Kindle download
The Dogs Trust very kindly sent us one of their pamper sets to try on our dogs, so we can let you know what we think of the products. Of course, we are happy to support all the animal charities, so products which go some way towards helping to support dogs in need seems like a brilliant idea to us. A minimum of one third of the retail cost goes direct to the charity - but were the products worth it?
The kit contained:
The packaging is a bright and cheery yellow with the Dogs Trust signature pooch logo, and all the prodcust are generously sized.
Some people thing that using a mild human shampoo is fine for dogs, but unfortunately it isn’t. Their skin is very different to ours, and very strong products and loud odours are not suitable. The Dogs Trust shampoo is sulphate and paraben free and contains a basil and rosemary to gently cleanse and soothe. The formula is odour repelling, and left the dog with a sweet smelling, vaguely herbal coat, with a minimum of froth and fuss.
We have been using it in conjunction with the conditioner, which is also free from parabens and sulphates and contains both palm and jojoba oil to be kind to skin and leave fur smooth and detangled. This product is very nice for longer haired dogs, as it definitely does leave the coat feeling softer and in better condition, as you would expect from any conditioning product.
The dry shampoo is an excellent idea. The product is in a dispenser and is a foam containing aloe, which just rubs in and towels off with no need to rinse. Ideal for reluctant bathers, we find this product really useful to keep in the car to get rid of any ‘interesting’ smells the dog has rolled in during a walk! It gets rid of dander, dirt and saliva, and leaves the coat smelling fresh and clean.
The snout balm was an additional extra, and is a brilliant idea. Much like human lip balm, this is a soft, oily balm to help soothe cracked and dry snouts and protect them from cold weather. Made with a non greasy blend of vegetal butters, including mango and jojoba, just a dab is sufficient to lubricate a sore nose and keep it shiny and healthy. A little goes a long way, too, so if your dog is prone to a dry or sore snout, this could be just the product.
The products are available on the Dogs Trust website, and start at around £5.99.
Thankfully, we’ve had no cause to review the `EezyEat4Pets` Elizabethan collar, as all the office Pets have been very healthy, but we have had a look and think this is an excellent idea. The product was invented by a worried owner who found her cat was struggling with the cone collar she had to wear after surgery. The collar is a necessity to stop pets from worrying at wounds and stitches, but can make it almost impossible for pets to eat properly at a time when they need it most. Rabbits for example can become very ill rapidly if they are unable to eat regularly, and most pets need to eat and drink well to recover properly. They can of course be removed, but putting them back on several times a day, as Joanne found, is no easy task.
What the EezyEat4Pets has is a detachable flap at the front which pops off and on for feeding times, enabling your pets to eat easily without getting wet food on and inside the collar. They are made from a less rigid, more flexible plastic, with lint edging to keep your pets neck comfortable and minimize pain or damage from bumping the front of the collar.
Like the Grippy Leads, this is a simple idea, but looks like it will offer real comfort to your recuperating pet.
For more info, see www.eezyeat4pets.com
Verdo Premium Wood Pellet Cat Litter
Verdo are one of a variety of brands of wood pellet based cat litter on the market, and official suppliers to Cats Protection. We were given and have been through several bags in recent weeks. Wood cat litteris surprisingly popular and has a host of benefits. This brand is made from 100% FSC approved virgin softwood, sustainably sourced in the UK, making it an good, environmentally friendly option. Being wood, it is naturally biodegradable, and can be composted (not for use on edible plants) or dug into the garden. It is non clumping – instead it puffs up into sawdust when wet, which can then be scooped away, and the remainder shaken to refresh. It has a natural, woody scent and is highly absorbent, and although it doesn’t clump around solids, as long as you remove them rapidly, we found this to be a good odour controller.
The Verdo brand was easily accepted by our guinea – cat, and one bag lasted a good couple of weeks with regular scooping and shaking. One of the things we liked was that it doesn’t track in the same way some clay based litters can, keeping the mess inside the tray where it belongs.
This litter is also ideal for house rabbits, as it absorbs odours and is not dangerous if they decide to chew it.
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