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The Easter holiday is a great time for reflection and family gatherings, Easter dresses and baskets, and bunnies and …dogs?  Yes, our pets are part of our Easter celebration and need to be kept in mind during the festivities.  We wanted to point out some obvious and some maybe not so obvious potential dangers over the Easter weekend.

1.    As most people already know, chocolate is very toxic to dogs.  That being said, be sure to keep Easter baskets out of reach of sniffing noses.  There are some sweeteners that are also harmful to dogs and ingested candy wrappers are no good for them either.  So basically it’s best to just avoid giving or letting a dog reach the Easter candy altogether.

2.    Easter grasses in the basket is a long standing tradition and let’s face it, baskets may just not seem complete without them.  However, dogs will see grasses much differently than we do.  To them it’s an irresistible treat begging to be munched.  Once ingested it can cause intestinal problems, choking hazards, vomiting, and abdominal pain.  Do your pet a favor and skip the grasses or be sure they stay in the baskets and well out of reach of your pet.

3.    Easter eggs (both plastic and real) are an obvious “must” for the Easter celebrations.  But dogs might see the plastic eggs as a treat for them and obviously ingested shards of plastic are never good.  As for real eggs, a fresh hard boiled egg can be a real and safe treat for your dog.  However, if your dog finds that “missing” egg leftover from the Easter egg hunt days later is not such a treat.  Eating a rotten egg is just as disgusting for a dog as it would be for a human.  Be sure you keep track of all eggs and hiding places to make sure they are all accounted for and back in the fridge when the festivities are done.

4.    Although we all love to celebrate with our dogs on Holidays, giving them leftovers are not the way to do it.  Some dogs have sensitive stomachs and others are prone to conditions such as Pancreatitis, which can be exacerbated by “people food”.  Keep a dog in their regular habits and stick with the foods they typically eat.  Although they may beg for more, they’ll thank you for it later.

5.    As we shared with our Christmas blog, be sure all company is aware that you have a dog and/or make sure your dog is invited to come with you if you are doing the traveling.  Not only is taking the necessary precautions common courtesy, it will also save everyone, including your dog unnecessary stress and anxiety during this already busy weekend.

We hope everyone enjoys their Easter weekend and everyone, including the family pup stays safe, healthy and happy.

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Do dogs deserve a hero's recognition?

We recently became aware of the effort to make K9 Veterans Day a national holiday. Apparently, the bill has already been adopted in New Jersey, Florida and Tennessee but not in the remaining states.

Joe White is the late founder of this holiday. He was an honored Vietnam Vet and dog trainer that recognized the need to honor our fallen four-legged companions. He knew the sacrifices and deeds performed by all types of service dogs, be it military, companion, airport, police, customs, F.B.I., etc, deserved recognition without prejudice.

What was most striking to us in the research on this topic was the continued emphasis that dogs serve us in all capacities to help human beings. Whether it be to sniff out bombs, to find survivors in wreckage, to guard our boundaries or simply to help us across the street, dogs serve to ultimately save human lives. Now how is that not worthy of recognition?

We mean no disrespect by this lens. On the contrary, we feel all aspects of military service by soldiers and their families deserve the utmost respect and gratitude from the civilian population. We just mean to raise awareness for the working dogs that need care, shelter and funds after their service is completed. All Veterans should be honored and appreciated when their service is complete.

What do you think? Please feel free to leave us your thoughts in the comment section below.


 

 

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We will be at the Central Ohio Home and Garden Show at the Ohio Expo Center from February 25 - March 4 (see below for days and times).  We'll be offering show specials and have goodies available for those that mention our blog or Facebook post.  We'd love to see both existing and potential customers, so please stop by and see us.  We're in booth number 451, which is located near the food court in the main building.  We hope to see you and your family there!

 

Saturday, February 25 - 10:00am - 9:00pm

Sunday, February 26 - 10:00am - 6:00pm

Monday, February 27 - Closed

Tuesday, February 28 - Noon - 9:00pm

Wednesday, February 29 - Noon - 9:00pm

Thursday, March 1 - Noon - 9:00pm

Friday, March 2 - Noon - 9:00pm

Saturday, March 3 - 10:00am - 9:00pm

Sunday, March 4 - 10:00am - 6:00pm

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We just returned from our trip to Texas for our National DogWatch® Convention.  What a surprise to find we were honored by DogWatch® Hidden Fences, Inc. as DogWatch® Dealers of the Year! This distinguished award recognizes dealers that represent ideal business models for the DogWatch® Hidden Fences Brand. Recipients of this award demonstrate excellence in sales, marketing, customer service and installation techniques that are second to none. In addition, award winners have maintained steady sales growth and increased acquisition of market share.

We are absolutely thrilled and honored to have received this award.  Give us a call at 614-527-3799 or contact us for a free in-yard estimate to see what the fuss is all about!

 

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We hear often that the underground fence is "one of the best investments" our customers have ever made (don't believe me, check out our testimonials page).  But now the tricky part begins.  How to choose what type of system and who to install it for you?  Obviously we hope you choose us, but we recognize there are other options out there.  Here's are attempt to give you a list of questions you should definitely ask of any company that comes out for an estimate or when comparing store bought brands.

What is the warranty policy on the equipment?

Your best (and in our mind only) answer to this question is a lifetime warranty that absolutely must include dog chews.  The collar that your dog wears will take a beating everyday.  It will be exposed to all elements, lots of dirt and everyday use.  Over time, it is possible that something will happen to the collar, so don't you want to be able to make a phone call for a new one?  So that's the second part of this answer - make sure warranty returns are easy and painless to accomplish.

Another question regarding the warranty.  Is it a national warranty program or will the warranties be voided when you move?

 

Battery Questions are Threefold.

First question, what is the expected battery life? The longer the better for your dog's safety, for your convenience, and for substantial cost savings.  Our batteries last 2 years, by the way.

Second question, are your batteries rechargeable? While at first this may seem the best option, rechargeable batteries should only be charged when the collar is completely dead.  It is absolutely unsafe to take the chance of having having your dog run free on an extremely low battery.  In addition, what is the procedure for replacing the rechargeable battery once it no longer charging?

Third question, are your batteries proprietary? If you can only purchase batteries through one source, you may want to rethink that decision.  Remember, competition keeps companies honest.

 

Safety Features (Beware of smoke and mirrors)

There are some features of a fence that are important and others that just try to look important that really don't matter.  In our opinion, here are the questions to ask that are truly relevant to your purchase.

Does your system run on a time delay, is it distance based or just give an immediate shock plus hang on time?

  • A time delay means that a certain amount of time will pass before the dog receives a correction, which is bad if the dog is running fast at the wire.
  • Distanced based means that there is an audible warning and if the dog is going slow, they have time to turn around before receiving a correction; however, if the dog is going fast at the wire, correction will begin immediately giving them a chance to u-turn back into the yard.  This is the type we have.
  • Immediate shock plus hang on time basically means the dog has no warning before they get a shock and may continue to receive a correction even if they head back into the yard (which could cause confusion over "safe" areas).

What kind of Surge Protection does your system offer? This question is important because you are going to have a copper wire buried around the perimeter of your house attached to your garage or sun room.  If lightning were to strike your yard, it COULD follow the wire into your house.  Surge protection helps to keep it outside of your house, so you are obviously looking for both internal and external surge and lightning protection. We offer this as well.

Do your collars have a battery indicator light? This simple little light just lets you know if the battery in the collar is okay or if it needs replaced.  A small addition to the equipment that provides big time peace of mind.

Is your equipment customer adjustable?

You are looking for a "yes" answer on this one.  Occasionally the system may need a bit of tweaking and what is more frustrating than paying a service call ($80 - $125) for someone to come out and be there for a total of two minutes.  Make sure you can adjust your own equipment and see what support they offer for over-the-phone or internet assistance.  If they do say "yes" ask them for a demo right there at the estimate.  The salesperson should bring all the equipment with him to the estimate so you know what you're buying.  Ask if you can do the adjustment yourself to see if you're comfortable with the procedure.

 

Are you a local company or a corporate company?

This answer is basically your preference.  Some people prefer big business and other people prefer supporting local.  Regardless, you want to ask:

  • How long have you been in business?
  • What brand of equipment do you install?
  • Affiliations that ensure they do quality work (BBB, Angie's List, local Chamber, etc)
  • If you move, will warranties follow you where you go?

 

Other questions to ask for things to look for:

  • What does your equipment look like? Hopefully they've brought for you to see and hold.
  • What is your service protocol? How much is a service call?  Why would I need a service call?  How long does it typically take for your to respond to my service request?  Stay away from the additionally charged service plan anyone may offer you up front (or at least read the small print).  It is unlikely you're going to have a problem with the fence in the first year and if you do, be sure the type of problems you may have (digging in a garden or edging) are covered under that plan.
  • What is your company's training protocol? Just make sure you're comfortable with what the company offers.
  • Is there a performance guarantee? If not, there should be.

Bottom Line

Do your research and follow your gut.  You are going to have this equipment for a long time and it's to be used to keep your four-legged family member safe.

 

Bravo if you made it to the end of this article!  If you have any questions or would like to set up a free-in yard estimate, just give us a call at 614-527-3799 or fill out a contact form.  And if you mention this blog post specifically at the estimate, we'll throw in a battery at no cost (a little reward for reading this far).

 

 

 

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DogWatch® products are protected under U.S. Patent Nos.: 5,353,744; 5,465,687; 6,079,367; 6,467,435; 6,360,698.© 2009 DogWatch Inc. All rights reserved. No photographs,illustrations or text can be reproduced in any form without the express written consent of DogWatch Inc.DogWatch Hidden Fences should not be confused with Invisible Fence® or Invisible Fencing® which are products and registered trademarks
of Invisible Fence, Inc.

DogWatch® Hidden Fences of Columbus serves Bexley, Blacklick, Columbus, Dublin, Gahanna, Galloway, Grandview Heights, Grove City, Groveport, Hilliard, New Albany, Reynoldsberg, Upper Arlington, Westerville, Worthington, Delaware, Galena, Lewis Center, Powell, Sunbury, Buckeye Lake, Granville, Heath, Johnstown, Newark, Pataskala, Choctow Lake, London, Mount Sterling, Plain City, West Jefferson, Marysville, Baltimore, Canal Winchester, Lancaster, Pickerington, Marion, Ashville, Circleville, Orient, Hideaway Hills, Logan, Maysville, And Rockbridge. Also included are Franklin, Delaware, Licking, Fairfield, Union, Madison, Marion, Hocking, and Pickaway counties.

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