So naturally first things first, we need to get from point A to point B. Remember if they’ll be soaring the skies to get those vaccination booklets up to date, and let them be the proud owners of an ID TAG/microchip, AIRLINE APPROVED CRATE and a super duper soft BLANKET.
If they’ll be hitting road, they need to be secured in their SEATS (CRATES for cats) and invest in some POOP BAGS or awesome odour control CAT LITTER to preserve your sanity too. However, if you’re not planning on travelling this summer, why not pop your pets in the car for a divine drive around the block, because a change of scenery is everything.
SAFETY TIPS – Make sure there’s water on standby and also invest in a LEAD to ensure your pets don’t make a reckless run for it upon arrival. NEVER let your pets stick those curious heads out the car window (for your safety and theirs) and consider purchasing a TRAINING PAD to absorb potential wee-wee’s and oopsies in the car and crate.
☼ WATER FUN
Yes, these summer months are glorious, but they’re also excruciatingly hot. Cool your dogs down with a trip to the beach, river, lagoon or pool. It’s always loads and loads of fun.
When hitting the pool, why not chuck in some FLOATING TOYS while you’re at it, just to spruce up the excitement to level 100. Don’t own a pool? Those shell-shaped kiddies pools we all seem to have stashed in the wendy house is a FURBULOUS alternative.
If you’re a cat-parent, don’t miss out on the joys water provide – spoil your cat with a crispy ice-cube to bat around the kitchen floor and Instagram all the glory.
SAFETY TIPS – Heat stroke is real, so make sure your pet drinks loads of cool, fresh water and invest in PET SUNSCREEN if that furry body is prone to sunburn. Be a real responsible pet-parent and buy a pet LIFE-JACKET too, because those paws can indeed become tired from all the doggy paddling and drowning is always a real threat. Water can unfortunately also lead to ear-infections, so make sure those audio-tunnels are dry and CLEAN as well.
☼ DINNER DATES
Nothing says holidays like cooking, so cook up a storm and try your hand at making some delightful PET TREATS for your pets. Hop into your pajamas, and enjoy a movie night with those freshly baked treats at hand.
If you’re planning on enjoying a crispy cold beer around the braai, spoil your dog with this uber fancy DOG BEER gift set, because it’s just so fantastically cool (literally and socially).
Cats can indulge in some pescatarian DELIGHTS, because naturally you don’t have to be at the coast to partake in some ocean cuisine.
SAFETY TIPS – Overfeeding is not classy, therefore you must limit their intake of treats, even if they beg. Yes, I’m going to mention water again, because water is life after all. If you have a chubby bunny at home, rather pretend to cook and give them a delicious, low cal DOG or CAT treat. Also stay away from human food like alcohol, bones, coffee, macadamia nuts, seeds (from fruit), xylitol and yeast dough.
☼ TIME OUTDOORS
Boy, do South Africans love to camp! Why not let your pet share the camping experience (if pet-friendly) and let the outdoor experience commence.
If you’re not a camper, walks in the park is great to let the fresh breeze blow through their fur. Maybe they’ll even make a new friend or two! Pet shelters tend to host park runs for charity, so check out local pet events and get in on that outdoor action.
If you’re home-bound, build an exhilarating obstacle course in the garden. The CAT TUNNEL is a hit amongst our feline friends inside and/or outside. For the canine community however, I wouldn’t recommend them jumping around indoors, unless you’ve been dying to replace those lamps ouma gave you.
SAFETY TIPS – Ticks, fleas, worms and injuries lurk in the shadows. Make sure your CAT and DOG have had their monthly tick and flea treatments, and those CAT and DOG dewormers have been given. LEADS lead the way to safety when out and about. If building an obstacle course, make sure there are no nails or sharp pieces sticking out of chairs and tables. AND then of course you guessed it – water on standby please and thank you.
☼ TIME INDOORS
If the summer rains start to pour, bust out some DOG PUZZLES and make the most of inside time. They help to reduce boredom and are of course mentally stimulating. Roll some socks, BALLS and anything else that is furniture safe around the living room floor.
Let your cat partake in some interactive fun and dust off those cat wands (because our unconditional love is always prefurred from a slight distance). If you’re feeling SUPER festive, buy the GRUMPY CAT LED WAND, because it truly boasts LED activated lights, and I’m not even joking.
SAFETY TIP – Watch out for potential choking hazards in and around the house.
So basically we wait over 300 days for December to come, and then time just flies out the window once it’s here. Make sure you take loads of photos and if you’re an Instagrammer, make the most of the season by sharing and preserving those festive memories. Why not buy some DOG ANTLERS and stylish DOG CLOTHES to spice up those photo ops.
SAFETY TIPS – Make sure you remove any props that could be hazardous to their health when the photo moment has passed, and even though enthusiasm is everything – let’s just make sure they actually enjoy the moment too.
☼ NEW TRICK (OR TWO)
Stimulate your dog’s mental ability by teaching your four-legged mastermind a trick or two. Start with the basics – sit, stand, roll over or simply to not eat poop (the struggle is real). Reward their efforts and enjoy the proud moment. Why not check out some of ePETstore’s TRAINING AIDS to get you started.
SAFETY TIP – Again I need to stress BEWARE of over-feeding. We want to reward our pet’s efforts, but creating a roly-poly instead of a roll-over defeats the purpose.
☼ NEW LOOK
If we start to resemble our passport photos, we know the year was tough. But if our pets start to resemble that old mop in the garage, then it’s most definitely time for a trim.
If you have a Pomeranian, Poodle, Bernedoodle, Goldendoodle or a Labradoodle, why not talk to your trusted groomer about some trendy cuts and if you just have woolly mammoth on your hands, maybe a military cut is a neat and summer-appropriate option to try.
SAFETY TIP – Just don’t brush in a rush and injure them. How awful would that be – can’t even deal.
☼ PET PAW ART
There are so many reasons as to why we should all do this somewhere. Have a look at this incredible BLOG POST all about paw art. Frame it for the bedroom or stick it on the fridge – it’s a fantastic way to bond in the most artistic way.
SAFETY TIPS – Use non-toxic water soluble (washable) paint and have a bowl filled with a hint of PET SHAMPOO and warm water ready to wash off those paws.
I’ll leave you with the beyond hysterical words of Ann Landers “don’t accept your [pet’s] admiration as conclusive evidence that you are wonderful” – so just give a little back, for all those blue Mondays and crazy Fridays where they’ve been at our sides. After all, our pets are so worth the effort and deserve a holiday and some time off too.