Thursday, December 3, 2015

Should Your Child Have A Pet?

At some point, almost every child will ask to bring home a pet of some kind, whether it's a dog or a fish, a hamster or a snake. There are a lot of things to take into consideration when choosing the best pet for your family. Before you go on autopilot, think about why it actually might be a good idea to give in on this point. Here are a few benefits you and your child may reap from giving in:

Having a pet teaches a child responsibility.
No matter what the type, if you oversee your child and expect him/her to care for it, they will learn that keep an animal is a large undertaking and they will need to be diligent.

A pet can teach your child to love unconditionally.
Animals don't expect affection but they give it freely. Children learn quickly that even when they are angry or upset a pet can calm them down by giving them an unbiased ear.

By having to care for a pet your child will learn basic math skills.
This is needed to figure out the amount of food and water that must be fed, etc.

Children learn basic housekeeping skills by having to care for an animal, fish or reptile.
They'll perform daily skills like cleaning cages, floor "oops," and food and water spills.

Many children don't get enough exercise.
By having a walk a dog or cat this becomes routine and they learn to enjoy it.

A dog can protect your child when you're not with them.
You might be very happy you allowed a dog into your home, for instance, if the dog interfered with a suspicious stranger attempting to talk to your son or daughter. There are many documented cases of animals alerting owners to dangers like fire and storms.

Your child can learn to manage money if you include him/her in food shopping and supplies for a pet.
Give them a fictional amount of money and have them keep track of actual expenditures. Reward them for staying within the budget.

Patience is a virtue, and one that can definitely be learned by having an animal.
Rowdiness, house training, and simple obedience discipline takes lots of time and repetitiveness. Allow your child to do a good share of this work.

History and biology are things every pet owner can research and learn.
Take your child to the library and help him/her pick out books on the breed of animal/reptile you select so that they know how to care properly for it.

The type of pet you allow into your home is up to you.
They range from fish and reptiles, hamsters, mice, dogs, cats and many more! It can be a positive experience for the entire family.

All parents are programmed to answer, "No," when the inevitable question comes. Before you automatically turn the request down, think seriously about whether it might be a good idea, after all. You just might teach your child some life lessons!

[article from suburban scene, fall home & garden]
[Photo courtesy]

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Boxer Fun Day 2015


Last weekend's Boxer Fun Day was a super success. Hosted by Potomac Boxer Club and held at Hog Dog Productions in Millersville, the day included a number of dog training demos (obedience, manners for more dominant dogs, nose work, agility), AKC sanctioned Boxer dog show matches (puppies and adults) that were judged by Boxer experts (kind of like "mini" Westminster dog show for local Boxers), various doggie games (apple bobbing, find the human and find the treat hide and seek games, group play), rescue storytelling time (meeting and greeting adoptable/adopted boxers), a costume contest, vendors, and a silent auction and raffle with 19 different prizes! A portion of the proceeds were donated to Adopt A Boxer Rescue.

This is a hide and seek game with treats. 
A treat is hidden under one of the many baskets, 
and the dog has to sniff it out and find it.

Lee and Mark, co-owners of All For The Pet, had a blast visiting with old friends and meeting new ones. As founder and director of the event, Lee kept the flow of the event going and was also one of the judges for one of the Boxer dog show matches. Meanwhile, All For The Pet's Marissa and new hubby, Brett, helped to pass out Boxer Fun Day bandanas and dog treat samples at our booth. Special thanks to the many volunteers from the Potomac Boxer Club to help prepare for the day, as well as to the many sponsors and vendors! Scroll below for Fun Day photos!

Pope Mobile with Newman as the Pope (right) who was accompanied by security with Roger as the guard (left). Newman and Roger are two of a pack of three dogs bred by Lee and Mark and are owned by the same owners. When Newman and Roger are together with Thelma Lou (an English Bulldog, not pictured), they're known as the Katandy Triple Threat!
Some of the costume contest participants.
Boxers weren't the only dogs there! Here, a Belgian Malinois gives the crowd one of the many dog training demonstrations.
This is Stretch, a Corgi, with his owner (and one of our regular customers). Don't let the wheels fool you --- Stretch got around and was having a dog-gone good time.
This is Chopper with his owners. Chopper was one of Lee's students in a dog training class ten years ago. Today, he's over 12-years old, but still going strong.
Anyone remember Coal? The young Boxer who likes to explore and greet people at the store? The one we recently Facebooked about? Well, here he is with Lee (left), his owner (middle), and Mark (right), waiting for what's next!
Marissa and her new hubby, Brett, supervising the All For The Pet booth.
This is Molly visiting from Adopt a Boxer Rescue. As her vest says, she's available for adoption!

Nineteen prizes generously donated by our sponsors were raffled off toward the end of the day. 

Potomac Boxer Club members who attended the event.