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Dogopedia

 
Best Pet Insurance in the U.S.

Written by Emily White | November 10th, 2017

Pet insurance works almost like other forms of insurance with some slight variations. With pet insurance, you pay your vet directly and then submit your reimbursement through your pet insurance provider.

Depending on your policy, all you will probably need from your vet is the itemized receipt for your pet insurer to make a payment. You also choose whichever vet you are comfortable working with.

The main benefit of pet insurance is obviously the peace of mind for pet parents that come with preparing for unforeseen medical expenses if your pet suffer an illness or serious injury. In addition to medical treatment for pets, pet insurance plans can also cover:

  • If your pet goes missing, a payment to cover the advertising costs and reward offered.

  • A third party liability coverage that covers legal expenses and any other costs as if your dog damage another person’s property or injure another person or animal.

  • Cost of treatment when you are abroad with your pet.

  • Dental treatment.

  • If you become ill and are unable to care for your pet, a payment for your dog’s boarding expenses.

  • Compensation payment if your pet passes away.

Dog ownership means making responsible and informed decisions about your pet care. There are several pet insurance companies to choose from. Here are the top three for pet parents to consider:

1. Healthy Paws

 

Healthy Paws is considered to be the best pet insurance due to the following features:

  • Healthy Paws offers a variety of plan options that pet parents can choose from and they do not have any caps whether per-incident or lifetime on any of their claims.

  • Healthy Paws covers most congenital and hereditary conditions as well as hip dysplasia. Some breeds are more predisposed to these conditions than others so this feature is a plus in dog ownership.

  • Healthy Paws offers low premium prices for their unlimited lifetime benefits with no claim limits as long as you’ve paid your premiums.

  • Healthy Paws is also reported to have some of the best customer reviews on the market.

2. Pets Best

 

Pets Best is considered a close second to Healthy Paws and has the following attractive features:

  • Pets Best offers an “Accident Only Plan” for unplanned emergency cases to a $10,000 annual limit. It’s one of the cheapest pet insurance options at a $250 deductible and reimbursement rate of 90%.

  • Pet parents are able to make fast claim payments in five days or less and they also provide customized plans.

  • Pets Best covers most congenital and hereditary conditions as well as hip dysplasia.

3. Petplan

 

Petplan is also among the top pet insurance companies for pet parents to consider in dog ownership with the following features:

  • Petplan allows pet parents to create customized plans that meet their budget needs and without being forced to pay for unlimited coverage.

  • Petplan does not have age restrictions and covers congenital and hereditary conditions as well as hip dysplasia.

  • Petplan has very clear cut and easy-to-understand policies of dog ownership and duties of pet parents.

 
Introducing A New Puppy To Your Dogs

Written by Etta Grue | September 21st, 2017

In the beginning of summer, I decided to bring a new addition to our family. I've always wanted a black Shih Tzu and when I saw Manhattan, I knew from that very moment that he needed to come home to us. When I brought home Manhattan, little did I know how difficult it'd get for my other two dogs. I thought from the bottom of my heart that since the transition from 1 to 2 dogs was an easy transition, why wouldn't it be the same this time around? I couldn't believe that my oldest dog Oreo would growl every time the puppy approached him. Oreo has never bitten Manhattan only warning snaps.

As pet parents with puppies or previous experience with puppies, we all know how brave and curious puppies are and their high energy-level. Although the existing challenge for my older dogs, I had faith in that there was room for growth in our home. I'd like to share what I've learned the past 4 months of the best way to introduce a puppy to older dogs:

1. Time. In order for my older dogs to accept the new little puppy, I had to let it take time. I never forced my two older dogs to play and interact too much with the puppy. I let them be and instead, I did my best to train and tire out the puppy as much as possible, I thought this would be easier for my other two dogs to accept him into the group. When the puppy was tired, he was calm and the other two dogs felt it was easier to have him around.

 

2. Sleep. When the puppy was sleeping (puppies sleep a lot), I gave all of my attention to my other two dogs and showered them with love. Took them out for separate walks to make them feel special. 

 

3. Supervise. The first few months, I was a stay-at-home dog mom. I never let the pack be alone together. After a few months, I started to slowly leave my home for a little time every day and every week I increased the time with minutes and then hours. There were times I had to be away for the day, then I brought the puppy with me in a pet bag. Another option would be to separate the dogs into different rooms, it's important to never leave dogs unattended when you are not there to supervise. 

 

4. Train, train, train! Go to puppy classes help the puppy to behave and listen to you as the pack leader. It helps the other dogs to have a well-behaved puppy around the house too.

 Oreo with his little brother Manhattan

(not super happy for sharing his secret spot, but at least accepting it)

I am against crating dogs, I want my dogs to have the freedom in their home. I am not saying it's either right or wrong, just that I am personally against it. I would recommend having your dogs in a designated room or two rooms, that is more than enough for your dogs. I also believe that crating decreases puppies social skills in which is very important for their development.

 
The Benefit of Having Multiple Dogs in A Household

Written by Etta Grue | September 9th, 2017

When I was seven years old, our family brought home our first family dog named Pontus. He was a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel a true sweetheart. Within the next couple of years, we suddenly had three dogs named Rasmus and Lucas, one dog for each daughter in the family. I have been around dogs all my life and when I decided to live on my own, I often visited my parents to hang out with the pups (and yes, visit my parents too!), walked neighbors' dogs, or helped my friends with their dogs. It was important for me to be around dogs because a home without a dog was VERY empty. For many years, I wanted a dog on my own and it would take me many years to make a decision to adopt a dog. Best decision of my life! Now, without knowing what happened...we're a family of three dogs! So, how is it to have multiple dogs in my household?

 

Going from one dog to two dogs was very easy. I barely experienced a difference, it was very similar to having one dog only. Oreo was just turning one year old when I brought home Marabou and he only showed excitement. Marabou is a very timid dog and is scared of everything and barks if the wind blows  (we're still working on that) and doesn't like to walk much. As soon as my second dog came into my life, I purchased a pet stroller and it has been a good investment. 

However, going from two dogs to three dogs is more interesting to discuss. First, I want to point out that whatever challenge we have in our life, we can manage. I am a pretty "chill" person, and I don't take life too serious, but instead I know I can handle most things in life with ease. When Manhattan was brought into our home I thought it was going to be just as easy as bringing home Marabou. I. was. wrong. Oreo wasn't very nice to the puppy, the puppy was not allowed to come close to Oreo. Marabou stayed under the bed for an entire week before she accepted the new puppy. Now, the little ones are best friends! Oreo took three months to accept him and sometime still wants to be left alone from the crazy and wild puppy.

Now, the difficulty is rather when we need to leave the house and go on a ride in the car. Putting the leashes on the dogs is a challenge because my dogs think it's a game. They run and hide underneath the bed or underneath the couch and wants to play (yes, I admit that I could have trained them a little better). Then walking to the car and putting the dogs in their designated car bag in the backseat and buckle them up. Not to forget to mention, if I have the stroller, which I often bring because of multiple dogs, I need to take off the wheels of the stroller in order to have the stroller to fit in my car. Every time I do this, I put on the timer on my phone and clock myself and my goal is to beat myself every time even if it's just with seconds. Yes, I am an Aries and we like to win! I start the timer when I begin putting first dog in a bag and buckle him up and lastly the stroller in the trunk. I stop the timer when I'm sitting in the car ready to drive. 3 minutes and 58 seconds is my best time!

I'm not saying that having dogs equal having children, I can't really relate to that since I don't have any children on my own, although I have taken care of children and understand the procedure of leaving the house especially if children don't cooperate with you. The same goes with the car, you buckle up one child at the time in the car and if you're unlucky the children either cries or screams out loud. My dogs bark or scratches trying to get out from their bags and won't be quiet until the engine is turned on. If one dog barks, most likely the other two will do the same. 

The benefits of having multiple dogs are the love and joy you receive. Not only will you have one dog that brings joy to your life, but you have multiple. You will get multiple kisses every day. I have three furry friends to spend the night and cuddle with. I get to experience several different personalities and learn so much about each one. Not to forget to mention the benefit the dogs get having company with each other when you are not able to be present is probably the best benefit of them all. Having multiple dogs in a household is in my opinion more of a challenge, but if you make a strategic plan, you will most likely love the extra work, extra hair, and the extra costs you are dealing with! I wouldn't change anything, I love all my dogs to pieces. The question is, when should I get my fourth dog and do I need a van for it?

 
How to Pick the Most Unique Name for Your Dog

Written by Etta Grue | September 1st, 2017

There is so much joy owning a dog. Not only do we prepare our houses for our new furry friend’s arrival by shopping for dog food, dog treats, and a new dog bed, but also we need to come up with a unique dog name for our pup. It can be difficult to make a decision like this, as your dog will have the name for many years to come.

When I used to live in New York City, I sometime took care of a dog named Chicken. Yes, Chicken.. It was a black pug with shiny fur. He was wild and playful and always chased birds down the streets of Manhattan. One morning, I was going to take him out for a walk and I accidentally dropped his flexi leash on the ground. Chicken took advantage of being free and ran away from me. Even though I know that chasing a dog is the last thing we should consider and instead we should run in the other direction, I ran toward the pug desperately screaming his name: “CHIIIICKEN!!” Let me just be straight up and honest here, I don’t judge people’s choice of name for their dogs, but try to picture people staring at a woman running several blocks in her PJ’s and flip flops screaming after Chicken. It was an embarrassing Kodak moment and I wouldn’t be surprised if someone recorded it and put it on Snapchat. On the positive side, there are a lot of crazy people in New York City, so I probably fitted in just perfectly!

So how do we choose the most unique name for our dogs? There are several ideas to come up with a creative name if we just think outside the box. As a dog owner of three fur balls, I chose a theme for mine. Oreo, pretty obvious why he got that name, he is black and white. Marabou is a chocolate brand in Sweden. For my new puppy, I chose between the name Pepper or Manhattan. If I would have chosen Pepper, I would have kept a food theme, and God knows that I love food! But I wanted it to be a little bit more unique so I came up with MOM, the three first letters of their names: Manhattan, Oreo, and Marabou. Manhattan was a perfect name for him because I used to live in NYC for many years. A friend of mine chose brands for her dogs: Missoni, Gucci, and Louis. Is it obvious that she loves expensive brands? Another way to decide on a unique dog name is to think about who you are and what you like. Are you homesick maybe you can name your dog after your hometown, state, or even country? What color is your dog? Maybe you want to name him Caramel, Snowflake, or Reeses?  Do you have a favorite actor or a favorite season of the year? The ideas of names are endless; just have fun finding your unique name for your pup!

Chicken, the Pug