CATEGORY ARCHIVES: Uncategorized

Is the uproar over BGT’s winner a storm in a teacup?

Posted on June 3, 2015

What a commotion after it was discovered that the Britain’s Got Talent winning dog, Matisse, did not perform the tightrope stunt in his winning routine!

Jules O’Dwyer, who performed the routine and also trains guide dogs, revealed that it was another of her dogs, Chase, who walked the tightrope because Matisse is not keen on heights.

The act featured O’Dwyer, dressed as a policewoman, going after Matisse, who had stolen sausages from a butcher, and also featured another of her pets, three-legged Skippy.

The pair beat Welsh choir Cor Glanaethwy and magician Jamie Raven to the £250,000 prize.

We had previously met Chase, when he appeared in the semi-final, but he was nowhere to be seen on stage during the results, leading to the accusations of deception.

Jules O’Dwyer has insisted that she did not cheat the public.  She says she told the BGT production team that Matisse had a stunt double and a body double.  Fletcher, his body double, was at home in Belgium and Chase, his stunt double, performed on the night.  The Producers of Britain’s Got Talent have apparently apologised.

However, I think it was Jules’ clever unique mixture of dog agility and story-telling that really what won the show for her.  So many things could have gone wrong, but the act went perfectly and couldn’t have been more entertaining. The act won by just 2% ahead of magician Raven but had it been known that there was a third dog involved, it might have boosted her votes as viewers could appreciate even more her knack of controlling and training a group of dogs to do exactly what she needed them to do on stage, under lights and in front of thousands in a live audience.

With a peak of 13.4 million views and only 30 people complaining, it’s a storm in a teacup.  Not only did Jules devise a fantastic routine, she managed to get more than one dog to deliver it seamlessly.

We think Matisse, Chase and Skippy all deserve one of our special pet tags.  Check our great range out.  Maybe we can track them down in Belgium!

 

 

 

 

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It’s National Unwanted Pets Week :(

Posted on May 30, 2015

 

Over 44 percent of people don’t seek advice before choosing a pet. Wood Green, the Animals Charity, released the results of its pet owner survey to coincide with an awareness campaign. National Unwanted Pets Week takes place from May 25th to 31st, following the organisation’s fears that naivety around pet ownership is leading to abandoned and unwanted pets.

It’s not the first time organisations have called for more education for would-be pet owners. Last year, 67 percent of rescue centres saw a rise in the number of abandoned dogs. The research, which was carried out by DogsBlog.com and The Co-operative Insurance, found that 56 percent of rescue centres believed lack of education about dog ownership was the main reason for abandonment.

Preventing abandonment and finding new homes for pets is a cause championed by many within the industry. Rescue centres, retailers and veterinarians are just a few of the pet professionals providing leaflets and in-depth advice. Wood Green is attempting to combat the high number of abandoned animals, after having seen a 6 percent rise in stray dogs over the last six months alone.

Sally Stevens, Director of Communications for Wood Green said: ‘What I would urge anyone interested in pet ownership to do, is to please, please do your research first.

‘You wouldn’t purchase something like a smart phone without taking advice or seeking recommendation, so it seems incredible to me – and to the thousands of us which work in the animal charity sector – that potential pet owners would rely on blind faith alone and then be left surprised by the way their new animal fits into the home and lifestyle.’

Of course, some pets can be inadvertently separated from their owners. The most recent Stray Dogs Survey by the Dogs Trust found that 50 percent of stray dogs were reunited with their families. Sadly, not every pet returned home. Around 7 percent were estimated to have been put to sleep because their owners could not be located.  So that your pet doesn’t end up being a sad statistic make sure they are microchipped with up to date details at the registry, and also make sure they wear an ID tag (which is also a legal requirement for dogs).  Don’t forget to include a phone number so that you can be contacted as soon as possible if your pet goes missing.  Here‘s a great selection of tags guaranteed for life and priced from £8.49 with first class dispatch within 24 hours.

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How safe are your pets?

Posted on May 27, 2015

How safe are your pets?

Pet theft appears to be an ongoing problem in much of the UK. Last year an ITV report named London and Kent as the most likely places for dogs to be stolen. The same report suggested that gun dogs such as retrievers and spaniels were most at risk. Gangs may even be targeting specific households. In January, The Telegraph newspaper raised fears that symbols chalked near to houses in Durham may be used by dog thieves to mark the homes of pedigree breeds.

For pet owners, these claims can only be distressing news. As always, it’s important to take the security of your pets very seriously. Most pet owners already take basic precautions, by never leaving animals untended in easily accessible areas and keeping an eye on dogs while they are off the lead.  Microchipping is an important and useful method of identifying pets and reuniting them with owners, and will become a legal requirement soon.

Will an ID tag help to prevent your pet from being stolen?  Obviously a thief can easily remove the ID from the pet, but pets without ID are more often stolen because the thief believes (or decides to believe) that they were unable to contact the owner, whether or not the pet is microchipped.  Stealing a pet and deliberately removing their collar and ID means the thief requires is far more sinister than taking home a dog without identification, whom the thief might decide is not cared for.

While some dogs are stolen for the thief to keep for themselves, many pedigrees are stolen for breeding purposes.  If your pet has been spayed, it is worth showing this on their ID tag.  Any thief looking for a dog to breed won’t be interested in one that has been spayed.

For added security, have your pets microchipped and spayed, and include the words ‘CHIPPED & SPAYED’ on their ID tag. And don’t forget, UK law mandates that you should also include your surname and address (house number and postcode at least) and of course a phone number so you can be contacted as quickly as possible should you pet go missing.

Choose from our fantastic range of pet tags at Pet-Tags.

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Daisy’s getting ready to be a mum again!

Posted on May 22, 2015

It seems like only yesterday that Daisy, our own special Dalmatian who is owned by Natasha (our Admin manager), gave birth for the first time to a crew of gorgeous tiny puppies.

Those puppies have long moved on (Poppy remained with her mum) and now we’re about to welcome a new lot.

Daisy in due to deliver her second litter on 2 June, but, as she was a week early last time (much to Natasha’s surprise!) we know anything could happen this time.  We’ll keep you posted, and can’t wait to show you the photos of the gorgeous newborns.

We learnt so much about the ups and downs of breeding the first time.  The excitement of seeing them come into the world and watching Daisy instinctively care for them, the sadness of losing some too weak to survive; the joy of watching them grow up and play but then having to say goodbye when they move on to their new families.  For anybody interested in breeding, it’s a fascinating process…

Step 1 – Finding Dad:  Daisy’s Stud delivered the first time, and the second as well!

Step 2 – Cutting The Deal: all went smoothly when Natasha cut the deal with The Stud’s owner.

Step 3 – Organising the Kennel Club Endorsements.  Daisy’s progeny are now eligible for Kennel Club registration, an important step which ensures the pups are recognised as having been carefully and responsibly bred.

Step 4 – The Waiting.  Waiting for a dog to come into season might be a bit like watching a kettle boil!  But it eventually happened, the first time back in September 2013 and again in mid-March this year.

Step 5 – The Dates (just to make sure…. two dates).  This time on 31 March and 2 April, which obviously went according to plan.

Step 6:  The Preparations: Getting the house ready for the birth comes next.  The Whelping Box has been put into one of the rooms at home within a large caged area to keep the pups safe.  Under a section of the box is a heat pad which will be a warm place for the pups if they are feeling cold.  Daisy and her pups will live in this area for the first 2 weeks before the pups are ready to venture further afield.

Daisy in her Whelping Box
Daisy in her Whelping Box – the pups will be joining her soon!

So again, I’m looking forward to posting the next update with photos of Daisy’s beautiful new Dalmatian pups.  How many will there be?  The first time there were 10, but sadly only 5 males and 3 females survived.  Will they be black-spotted, like their Dad, or liver-spotted like Daisy?  Last time it was even – 4 of each.

We’ll know very soon!

Stay tuned – we’ll be celebrating by offering some special discounts.  In the meantime, check out our ranges of Design, Glitter, Bling (with genuine Swarovski Crystals), Fashion, Stainless, Brass and Plastic tags.  Remember the Control of Dogs Order rules your dog must wear ID with the owner’s name and address.

Daisy in the Pet-Tags office
Daisy in the Pet-Tags office
Daisy in the Pet-Tags office
Daisy in the Pet-Tags office
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Daisy wearing her engraved Kennel Club ID tag
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All about your cat’s cute sneeze!

Posted on May 15, 2015

That cute little sneeze in most cases is nothing to worry about.  But some cases do require some attention.

Cats, just like us, will sneeze when there’s a tickle or an itch in their nostrils.  They can also be prone to allergic reactions, just like we can.  However, the cause could be a nasty viral or bacterial infection that might require a course of antibiotics, and in some cases, can indicate something even more serious.

If your cat is suddenly sneezing in bursts, check for any other symptoms or anything else out of the ordinary, whether it’s their behaviour or physical appearance.

Other symptoms appearing alongside sudden onsets of sneezing could include:

  • Heavy coughing or wheezing
  • Diarrhoea
  • Green or yellow discharge from the nose
  • A fever
  • Drooling from the mouth
  • Poor coat – dry or patchy with heavy malting
  • Weight loss
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Lack of enthusiasm for food

 

If your cat’s been sneezing for more than a few days and they’re not prone to allergies, it’s time to see the vet.

Just like that cold or dose of flu we may get, the most likely cause of your cat’s sneezing is a mild viral or bacterial infection.  Your vet may take swabs of the inside of your cat’s mouth, nose, throat and eyes and send them away for testing.

The most common viral infections that cause sneezing are feline herpes and feline calicivirus. While these viruses aren’t necessarily dangerous, if left untreated other more serious infections may develop. Feline herpes, for example, can often lead to a further bacterial infection but can be treated with a course of antibiotics.

Sneezing can be the first signs of a long list of other serious illnesses and conditions. Some of the more serious are feline leukaemia and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) or ‘cat AIDS’. Feline leukaemia is in most cases fatal and FIV attacks the cat’s immune system, leaving them vulnerable to further infection and serious, life-threatening illness.

Other infections that cause sneezing in cats include Bordetella, Feline Chlamydia, Mycoplasma and Feline infectious peritonitis

If your cat doesn’t come into contact with other cats and spends its time indoors, it’s far more likely that your cat is having an allergic reaction.  If your cat is sneezing due to an allergy of some sort, they could also be coughing, wheezing, have itchy skin and itchy, runny eyes or an itchy back or base of tail (most commonly seen in flea allergies), itchy ears and ear infections, vomiting, diarrhea, snoring caused by an inflamed throat and sore or swollen paws.

If you suspect your cat has an allergy, let the vet do some tests to determine how best to treat it.

Often you can help your cat’s sneezes by simply tracking down anything new to the house that might be the culprit.  This could include cigarette smoke, scented candles, new perfume, chemical cleaners, pest sprays, mould, excessive levels of dust, certain fabrics or even a particular food are all common causes of allergies.

With the onset of spring, a sneeze is most likely to be caused by nothing more than pollen, but it is worth noticing if it might something more.

For 20% off all tags perfect for cats, go to Pet-Tags and enter discount code CATS20, UNTIL 31 May 2015.

 

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Daisy’s getting ready for another adventure!

Posted on April 10, 2015

You might recall the adventures of Daisy and her first litter of pups which started back in September 2013.  Well, she’s at it again!  The same handsome stud is on board and the waiting game begins.  We’ll keep you posted!

Daisy snuggles with her brand new baby pups!
Daisy snuggles with her brand new baby pups!
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Your pet could be The Biggest Loser too!

Posted on April 10, 2015

Want your special pet to lose some weight and get healthier?  Be inspired by the Biggest Pet Loser and enter this year’s Pet Fit Club’s pet slimming contest to be in the running for a free pet tag and eZeClip!

Check out these ‘before and after’ photos of Daisy the Bulldog, crowned the UK pet slimmer of the year.  Diet queen Daisy, from Middlesbrough had ballooned to over 4st 6lbs, making her more than 40 percent overweight.  She would only exercise when bribed with ham and would even steal food from the fridge!  With Pet Fit Club’s support and her owner Gillian’s determination, Daisy lost an impressive 27% of her bodyweight.

Animal charity, the PDSA, has warned that obesity has become vets’ number one concern for dogs.

The latest PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report discovered that six million dogs in the UK exercise outside the home or garden for only an hour or less a day. Just like in adults, lack of activity for pets can lead to obesity which may contribute to life-shortening health problems such as heart disease and diabetes.

Dogs aren’t the only pets struggling to beat the bulge. Many of the country’s furry companions are seeing similar problems. Rabbits – the nation’s third most popular pet – are getting larger, reported the PDSA.

So, how is the industry tackling pet obesity? Many pet store retailers already stock foods that support weight loss. Veterinary experts are offering advice, and often specialist clinics, to tackle pets’ growing waistlines. The PDSA is also doing its bit for the health of the country’s animals. It has launched its annual Pet Fit Club competition and is urging the owners of Britain’s biggest pets to help their companions regain a healthy weight.

Nicola Martin, PDSA Head of Pet Health and Welfare, said: ‘Over the past decade, Pet Fit Club has transformed the lives of some of the UK’s most obese pets, having helped nearly 100 animals shed over 60 stone so we are welcoming entries again and offering our expertise.’ If you are interested in taking part enter at www.petfitclub.org.uk before April 26.  Email us before and after photos of your pet’s progress at info@pet-tags.co.uk and you’ll be in the running for a free pet tag and eZeClip.

We’ll be posting tips to help you and your pet achieve their goals this month!

 

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Get ready for Crufts!

Posted on February 6, 2015

It’s Crufts time!  Read on for some fantastic tips from The Kennel Club about getting started in Dog Showing and meet our new Pet of The Month.

Crufts is the biggest dog show in the world.  This year, the show starts on Thursday, 5 March for four fun-packed days at the NEC in Birmingham.

To celebrate, our featured exclusive Crufts dog ID tags in 4 cool colours are discounted by 20% from now until midnight on 8 March.  Just go to our Official Crufts ID Tags page and enter the discount code CRUFTS15 at checkout.

Crufts Banner Tags tags only

Our Pet-Tags Pet of the Month for March features our yellow Crufts ID tag.  He is gorgeous Merlin McPherson.  Merlin is a 6 year old Bearded Collie who enjoys taking part in fun agility and Heelwork to music. Over the last few years, he has learned a variety of moves and he and his mum Janet have enjoyed putting together a Freestyle routine which they hope one day to perform in the ring.

Merlin is well on his way to success.  In 2013, he joined the Prospectors Canine team at the Manchester Dog Show under the experienced eye of Christine Stafford and her sister, Jean Tomkinson. Last year, Merlin gained the prestigious Kennel Club Bronze and Silver Good Citizen awards and he is now working towards the Gold. This year, Merlin will be going to his first ever Crufts as a member of the Crufts Silver Display Team 2015 – Midlands and taking part in the demonstrations on Thursday and Saturday. He is currently working hard to learn his moves with his fellow canine partners ready for the big event.

Apart from enjoying his training classes, he likes nothing better than to go for long walks and running off the lead in the park with his brother, Griffin, a Border Collie, and then crashing out on the sofa with a well-earned piggy ear.  Well done Merlin!

Merlin McPherson

Dog Showing is the most popular canine activity in the country and is a great way to show others why your dog is the best in the world. All pedigree dogs can take part in Dog Showing which takes place in different rings at a dog show.  Each pedigree dog is judged against the official Kennel Club Breed Standard.  The Breed Standard is a blueprint for the perfect characteristics for each breed and covers every aspect of the dog, including health and temperament. Click here to see an example of a the Kennel Club’s Breed Standard. The dogs which conform most closely to the Breed Standard will receive the top awards.

The Kennel Club have loads of advice about getting started in dog showing:

Getting Started in Dog Showing

Ensure your dog is registered with the Kennel Club on the Breed Register and is 6 months of age or over. (If you’re not sure if your dog is registered or would like more information about how to get your dog registered on the Kennel Club’s Breed Register, visit the Registrations section here.)

How can I prepare for a Dog Show?

Although you might just like to enter a show and see how you get on, there is some preparation you could do to ensure you and your dog get the best out of the day.

A great way to find out whether dog showing is for you is to visit a show or multiple shows and see what it’s all about. You can find a list of Kennel Club licensed Shows in our Events Diary which is updated monthly. Alternatively, if you would like to visit a Show closer to your home or to see a specific breed, contact the Services Team via cat@thekennelclub.org.uk

Once you’ve been to a show, you might have an idea of what characteristics the judge is looking for in each dog. However to find out more specific details and learn more about what is expected at a Dog Show, you could attend a Ringcraft Class (a class for show training) and learn more about how to present your dog at a Show and also look at the Kennel Club Breed Standards which details the characteristics for every breed of dog that can be registered with the Kennel Club.

 

What types of show are best for me?

To find out about the different types of show and decide which would be most suitable for you and your dog, click here.

What classes can I enter?

Enter a show in a class that is suitable for your dog. You can find a list of the Kennel Club licensed Shows in our Events Diary which is updated monthly. You can also find details of upcoming shows on the following websites: www.highampress.co.uk and www.fossedata.co.uk,

The best way to see what classes would be suitable for your dog is to find a show and look at the show schedule. The show schedule includes information about the show and details all the classes that will take place at the show. You can find a suitable class for your dog by reading through the explanation of each class.

Things to consider

Health is of paramount importance, so before taking part in dog showing, make sure your dog is Fit For Function: Fit for Life. Click here for more information about health and welfare for show dogs.

Legally Compliant ID Tag

You’re dog will also need legally compliant ID engraved on a tag or collar.  This should include owner’s name and address.  We also recommend you include a phone number so that you can be contacted more quickly if your dog is lost.  Choose from our range of tags, including Official Crufts tags, at Pet-Tags.

 

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Which parts of Britain report the highest number of missing pets?

Posted on January 26, 2015

The number of abandoned cats is on the rise, reports Keighley-based charity, Yorkshire Cat Rescue. In 2014 the organisation rescued 865 cats and kittens, compared with 688 the previous year.

These shocking statistics follow the RSPCA’s report in October of last year. It revealed that 210,952 abandoned animals have been reported to the organisation in the last five years. Cats Protection’s Newbury Adoption Centre also saw a 36 percent increase in 2014. Last year it rehomed 570 cats and kittens with the help of new facilities opened in Newbury’s Pets at Home store in April.

As well as abandoned pets, the number of lost dogs and cats who are not reunited with their owners continues to rise.  Sainsbury’s Bank Pet Insurance research reveals that around 60 cats or dogs go missing in the UK every hour.

Its findings reveal that over the past five years 2.54 million people claim to have lost a dog or cat, but well over a third (38%) were not reunited with them.  Some 830,000 owners who were reunited with them said that the fact that their pets were chipped helped find them.  Furthermore, pets with ID tags increased reunification significantly.  The Control of Dogs Order (1992) rules that all dogs in the UK must wear an ID tag with the pet’s owners name and address engraved, and obviously a phone number will help to be able to contact the owner quickly.

In terms of which parts of Britain have seen the largest number of cases of pet cats and dogs going missing over the past five years, Sainsbury’s Bank Pet Insurance’s research reveals that the West Midlands accounted for 17% of cases, followed by London with 15%.

Location Number of people who claim that their cats/dogs have gone missing over the past five years(1) Percentage of cases of missing dogs and cats in  Britain over the past five years(1)
West Midlands 430,000 17%
London 383,000 15%
North West 293,000 11%
South East 278,000 11%
Yorks/Humb 273,000 11%
Scotland 205,000 8%
East Midlands 172,000 7%
South West 157,000 6%
Eastern 119,000 5%
North East 119,000 5%
Wales 110,000 4%

To reduce the chance of your beloved pet going missing forever, have them microchipped and keep your details up to date with the microchip registry, and also make sure they are wearing a legally compliant engraved pet tag.  You can choose from our huge range of ID tags from only £8.49 including full engraving and first class dispatch within 24 hours.

 

 

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Looking at cute images of kittens and pupplies increases your powers of concentration!

Posted on January 23, 2015

The cute things in life can do all sorts of wonders for us.  As well as giving us a case of the warm and fuzzies, the mere sight of cute pictures can heighten our mental skills, improving our concentration after we view them.

A recent Japanese study found, through three separate experiments, that people showed higher levels of concentration after looki