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Theory of Pets Podcast

Welcome to Theory of Pets Podcast, a show for dedicated pet parents looking to learn more about pet ownership, the pet industry and improve the way we care for our dogs and cats. On this podcast we bring together long-time pet owners, experts from many different fields, industry professionals, veterinarians, trainers, authors, entrepreneurs, bloggers, celebrities and personalities to talk exclusively about pets and the industry. The podcast covers any and all pet related subjects that majority of owners will find value in, and provide some of the most unique discussions, behind the scenes stories and helpful advice straight from the horse's mouth.
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Now displaying: 2017
Dec 7, 2017

Losing a beloved pet is one of the most difficult experiences. It’s heartbreaking. Our pets become members of our family, and when we lose them there is a hole left in our hearts. Suzanna Lane is an author from New York City, and she was devastated after the loss of her first dog, Sammy. She felt compelled to write a book about Sammy’s life and the changes that he made to hers.

You see, Sammy was a rescue dog. Anyone who has ever loved a rescue pet understands that the bond you form with them is different than the bond formed when you adopt a pet as a baby. You’re rescuing them. You’re saving their life. And, if you’re as lucky as Suzanne, they just might rescue you too.

This week’s podcast focuses on the benefits of adopting pets over purchasing from a pet store or breeder. We also discuss Suzanne’s book, A Little Sammy Music. Both Suzanne and I share stories of the beloved rescue pets that we have adopted over the years and the meaning that they have brought to our lives.

Dec 6, 2017

Have you ever given your pet a massage? If you’ve ever stroked your pet lovingly from neck to tail, then you have! Most of us think of a relaxing deep tissue massage when think about massage therapy. In fact, pet massage involves many different techniques, and this week I talked with an expert in the field to learn more about the benefits of pet massage and get some tips for pet owners at home who would like to give their furry companion a massage once in a while.

Jacqueline Newholm is a trained pet massage therapist based in the UK. Her business, Big Brown Dog Therapy, just celebrated its one year anniversary. However, Jacqueline has been involved with pet message for much longer than that. In this week’s episode she talks about the many benefits of pet massage and shares some tips for pet owners about massaging their companion at home.

You learn about the science behind pet massage and the many different ailments that it can help to treat. Did you know that massage is also beneficial for working animals and animals that compete in sporting competitions? It can help to stimulate the muscles and warm them up, which helps to prevent injury. Jacqueline discusses all of this and so much more in this week’s episode.

Dec 5, 2017

Low level light therapy (LLLT) has been used as a healing practice in veterinary medicine for decades, but you’ve probably never even heard of it. I had heard a few whispers about the treatment method, but didn’t know much about it until an email from a company called LumaSoothe crossed my desk. They’ve created a handheld LLLT device that pet owners can use to treat their pets at home.

Of course, this piqued my interest and I started doing some research on the subject. I was inspired by what I was reading, so I decided to reach out to the CEO of LumaSoothe, Mr. Craig Froley, to talk more about the concept. In this week’s podcast, Craig tells us all of the details about light therapy for pets and his company’s unique device.

What are the benefits of light therapy? Does it work for all pets? Is it only useful for senior animals? You might be surprised to find out just how beneficial this treatment option is for pets of all sizes and shapes. Whether you’re pet is active in competitions or a mellow senior with arthritis, LLLT can have a positive effect on his health. Craig tells us all about this innovative technology in this week’s podcast!

Dec 1, 2017

Raw food diet is a very controversial topic in the pet food industry right now. Some pet owners believe that our pets’ ancestors ate a raw diet, so it’s best if we feed them the same types of food. Other people believe that raw food is the home of many harmful bacteria and parasites that could make our pets very sick. This week, I wanted to get some more information about this hot topic.

I spoke with Mark Sapir, Chief Marketing Officer at Stella & Chewy’s. Stella & Chewy’s is a pet food company that strives to offer pet parents a commercially available way to feed their furry companion a raw food diet that is both healthy and safe. They follow strict guidelines to ensure that the diets they provide to pet owners are nutritionally balanced and properly prepared to prevent the spread of bacteria.

During our interview Mark explained the benefits of a raw food diet. He also told me whether or not the diet is safe pets of every age, size and activity level. While Mark offers a lot of great information in this week’s episode, it’s also important for you to consult your veterinarian or a trained canine nutritionist before switching your dog’s diet.

Nov 22, 2017

Anxiety in pets is becoming more and more common. As most owners must work outside the home, we are also seeing more pets being left alone for a large part of the day. How can you tell if that naughty behavior just requires additional training or if it’s a sign of pet anxiety?

If you’re already pretty sure that it’s anxiety, how do you know that it is because of an environmental variable? What if the emotional and behavior symptoms are also stemming from an underlying healthy condition? Jessa Paschke is a professional pet trainer with Mars Petcare, and she told me all about the signs and symptoms of pet anxiety that you should be looking for and what to do if you notice them.

Jessa shares some great information for beginner and advanced pet owners in this week’s episode. She also gives us some great resources to use to educate ourselves about pet anxiety and discusses a few products that may help you when trying to cope with your pet’s condition.

Nov 21, 2017

Dr. Jennifer Adolphe, PhD is back with some great information to share with pet owners about the differences between wet and dry kibble. She discusses how to choose the right diet for your dog and the advantages and disadvantages or wet and dry diets. She will also be sharing some helpful tips for dog owner who may be interested in transitioning their pet to a new diet.

One of the things that many pet owners don’t realize when shopping for a food for their furry companion is the quality of the packaging and how that can affect the food itself. If you’re buying a high quality, all-natural food for your pet with no artificial ingredients, toxins and chemicals could still be leeching into the food through the packaging.

A new type of packaging from Tetra Pak is being used by Petcurean and other pet food companies to reduce these risks. They are making food packages (which are also becoming more popular in the human food industry) that are made from renewable resources. The packages are specifically engineered to keep out bacteria, and the food is actually cooked right inside the package! Dr. Adolphe talks more about this unbelievable new packaging option in this week’s podcast.

Nov 7, 2017

Did you know that the changing of seasons may require a change in your pet’s diet? As we transition from summer to fall and winter, this is an important topic to discuss. Many of us believe that our pet’s diet only needs to change as they age (for example, from puppyhood to adulthood and again when they become a senior). In fact, there are many reasons why your pet’s diet may need to be altered.

This week I was able to have an email exchange with Dr. Jeff Werber, a veterinarian and spokesperson for Mars Petcare. Mars is one of the leading companies in the world when it comes to pet care and pet products. Their brands include world leaders like Banfield Pet Hospital, IAMS, EUKANUBA, Pedigree and Nutro.

Dr. Werber spoke to me about how the change in seasons can affect your pet’s dietary needs as well as the current pet obesity epidemic. In this week’s solo podcast that I'm doing by myself you’ll learn about the dietary needs of pets in every season and the importance of consulting with your veterinarian before making any changes to your Fido’s diet. I’ll also be discussing some of the most important things to look for (and stay away from) when shopping for a commercial pet food diet.

Nov 6, 2017

Do you have a great idea for a pet product that has not been created yet? Maybe your pet had a special need and you created a product to help them? Would you be interested in marketing your product to consumers? How do you get your product off the ground?

That’s exactly what I’m discussing this week with my guest, Jonathan from Dog’s Choice Dog Wash. Dog’s Choice hasn’t hit the market yet. Jonathan is in the process of trying to get his product funded for development. He’s hoping to begin manufacturing and distributing his grooming products by the end of the year.

But, what does this entail? Would you know how to raise money to get your product manufactured? What do you do once you have enough money for production? All of these questions are answered in this week’s podcast, and you’ll get some information on Dog’s Choice – the first customizable dog wash – as well.

Nov 4, 2017

Kids and dogs – it’s a controversial topic that will probably never be agreed upon in my lifetime. I’m often asked about raising children with pets, and in my opinion the advantages greatly outweigh any disadvantages that you may be thinking of. In our family, our children have never known life without pets. I know it’s had a positive impact on them, and this week I wanted to talk to an expert on the subject to get some more information.

Dr. Jody Dean has written a book, Roxie the Doxie Finds Her Forever Home, that is based on the real experience that she’s had adopting her Dachshund Roxie. It details the adoption process and discusses some of the feelings that someone being adopted may feel throughout the process. It also talks about Roxie’s life in her new home, including the responsibilities that are required to care for a dog and Roxie’s success in competitions.

In this week’s podcast, I explain what happened when I read this book to my children, and Dr. Dean explains the benefits of raising children with dogs. She also discusses the importance of choosing a dog that is right for your family and not just adopting the first cute face that you see in a shelter. Because she is a therapist for children, she also discusses the benefits that dogs can have for children on an emotional level.

Nov 3, 2017

Many pet owners hope to save some money by grooming their companion animals at home. What do a few baths and brushing sessions matter when it could save you hundreds of dollars per year, right? Well, there’s more to it than just that. In this week’s episode, I talk with a professional pet groomer of dogs and cats from the Andis company to get some pointers on at-home pet grooming and the grooming supplies you’ll need to do the job.

Megan Mouser is a professional pet groomer and the Education Manager for Andis, one of the leading pet grooming product manufacturers in the world. Megan shares tips and tricks for at-home grooming as well as some information you’ll need to choose the right grooming supplies for your pet.

Remember, not all pets are able to be groomed at home. Some pets become aggressive during grooming, and you don’t want to take any chances. Megan will also educate us about the signs you should look for in an uneasy pet and when it would be best to seek help from a professional groomer rather than tackling the task yourself.

Oct 6, 2017

Homemade dog food is becoming a popular choice among pet owners, but is it really that health as some claim it to be? The short answer is no, but there is much more to it than that. In fact, homemade dog food can be the absolute healthiest option for your pet. Unfortunately, most pet owners look to the wrong sources when trying to find appropriate dog food recipes for their pet.

I've been cooking for my dogs for many years now and have done a lot of personal research in this area. In this week’s podcast, I cite studies from the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine. This research shows that a lot of the recipes found online and in books may not be healthy for most pets. They tested over 200 recipes, some that were even written by veterinarians. What did they find?

I discuss that and a lot more about cooking for dogs in this podcast episode, so you’ll have to listen to find out! But, I talk about more than just the research. I’ll explain how you can ensure that you feed your dog a healthy homemade dog food diet and the importance of varying his diet as he ages.

Oct 5, 2017

You’ve seen the recalls and read the research. It’s true that most pet food companies are more interested in their profit margins than the nutrition that they’re providing for our pets. This week, Richard Darlington, CEO of Brothers Complete Dog Food, discusses the hidden dangers of pet food. He explains the importance of being diligent as a pet owner and doing your research before you choose a commercial diet for your pet.

During our conversation we also discuss the many dangerous products that can be found in your local pet store. From toys to flea treatments, you need to be extremely careful about the products that you’re buying for your dog. At the end of the day, if your dog is poisoned by the products that he’s using or the food he’s eating, it’s no one’s fault but your own.

As a responsible pet owner, you need to educate yourself on the best diet for your pet and which dog food company is going to meet your pet’s nutritional needs without adding a bunch of fillers and artificial ingredients. Richard also talks about his journey into the pet industry and why Brothers is so focused on providing pet owners with healthy, complete nutrition for their furry companions.

Oct 4, 2017

Professional dog trainer Doggy Dan is here with me this week! If you’re not familiar with him, Doggy Dan has created an online dog training program that has been wildly successful in many countries around the world. His dog training program has been used by more than 25,000 people, and he has years of experience working with dog owners and their pets.

This week Dan discusses his dog training method, which focuses on fostering the bond between the pet and his owner. He uses a training method that is humane, kind and gentle. While some trainers believe that dog owners need to forceful when working with their pet in order to assert their dominance, Doggy Dan has found a much calmer method that has worked with thousands of dogs.

He also shares tips on solving some of the most common dog behavior issues, like pulling on the leash and nuisance barking. This week’s episode is filled with useful information for new pet owners and experienced trainers alike! Doggy Dan even discusses some ways that you can begin dog training as a career, if that’s something that you’re interested in.

Oct 3, 2017

This week I’m welcoming Dr. Jennifer Adolphe back to the show! She is a pet nutritionist for Petcurean, and the company has recently released a new line of premium pet foods called GATHER. Last time we spoke about the humanization of pet food and the current trends that we’re seeing in the pet food industry. As humans wise up about the chemicals and artificial ingredients in the food that we eat, we’re also noticing that the food we’re feeding our pets is also full of these ingredients.

Pet owners are pushing for foods made with organic, natural ingredients. We’re also seeing some human diet trends - like raw food and the Paleo diet – crossing over into the pet food industry. Unfortunately, as the quality of the food goes up, so do the price tags. So, why does premium pet food cost so much?

Dr. Adolphe answers this question and many more in this week’s podcast episode. She also discusses the issues surrounding sustainability in the pet food industry. GATHER is sustainably produced and made with certified and organic ingredients. Why is sustainability important when it comes to pet food? You’ll find out in this week’s episode!

Sep 4, 2017

If you’ve ever had a special bond with a dog, you can fully understand the amazing healing powers that these animals have. Really, it’s not just dogs – all pets have a way of helping us heal. Whether we’re struggling with emotional issues or physical problems, something about the love and affection of a dog can really turn things around.

Mark Winik spoke with me this week about an eye opening experience that he had with dogs. He learned the power of dogs as healers, and wanted to share that experience with the world. That’s just what he has done with is book The Dog Healers. It’s an inspiring story that any dog owner or dog lover can relate to. In fact, this is a great read for anyone looking for an uplifting novel.

Not only is Mark an author, he’s also working on a documentary. He has set out to film a documentary detailing the stories of people who have been healed by dogs. He’s already spoken with a number of people who have been positively affected by a canine companion, and he’s still looking for more.

Sep 1, 2017

Dog training is a critical part of owning a canine. You can’t just expect a puppy or adult dog to know everything that you want him to. You also can’t expect your pet to learn on his own. If you’ve ever heard the term dog behavior work, you probably just assumed it meant dog training. It’s a common mistake, but the two are actually much different.

My guest this week is Debby Dobson. She’s a dog behaviorist that works with pet owners to help address some of the behavior issues that their dog is exhibiting. For example, if you have an issue with your dog jumping up on people when they come to your home for a visit, Debby could show you how to change that behavior.

While part of her job certainly involves training dogs, it’s also about finding the root of the problem and helping the dog to understand what the unwanted behavior is and what you would like him to do instead. In our interview, Debby shares some excellent tips and tricks for curbing unwanted behaviors. She also discusses some excellent books, products and other resources that will be a big help to pet owners trying to do behavior work with their pet at home.

Aug 6, 2017

Whenever the topic of homemade pet food comes up, I’m always asked if it’s really that much better than commercial pet food. Unfortunately, that’s not a simple answer. Homemade pet food is MUCH better than SOME commercial pet food products. However, there are also some very high quality, safe, healthy and nutritious pet food products on the market.

The benefits aren’t just health related either, which surprises a lot of people. Making your pet’s meals gives you a peace of mind that you’ll never be able to have while serving commercial food to your companion. When you make homemade food, you know exactly which ingredients are being used, the quality of those ingredients and how the food is prepared. You’ll never have to worry about a recall on the food that you’re feeding your pet.

This week I discuss these advantages of homemade pet food, along with many others. I’ll explain whether homemade dog food is the right option for you and your pet or whether a commercial diet would be a better option. As always, when considering a change in your pet’s diet, you need to consult your veterinarian or a trained canine nutritionist first.

Jul 31, 2017

Homemade dog food and the benefits that this diet can have for both pets and pet owners is something many pet owners forget to consider. This week, I want to discuss some of the most common myths and misconceptions that I often hear when discussing this diet with other dog owners.

As you know, I feed my dogs a homemade diet. When people find this out, they typically ask a lot of questions about the diet and why I choose to feed my dogs homemade food. Then they start asking about some of the things they’ve heard about homemade dog food. I hear things like:

  • How can you afford to feed homemade ?
  • How do you find the time to make homemade dog food? I can barely find the time to cook for the humans in my family!
  • Homemade diets aren’t healthy for dogs because they include fats, carbs and other unhealthy ingredients.

In this week’s episode, I’m debunking these myths and many other common misconceptions about the homemade dog food diet. If you’ve heard some of these things and it’s been holding you back from switching to homemade dog food, you’re going to want to hear what I have to say. As always, it’s best to check with your veterinarian before switching your pup’s diet, but this will give you some great information to start off with.

Jul 27, 2017

This week our family has been dealing with a canine issue. Our furry nephew, my brother’s dog, has injured his back. The veterinarian says that surgery is the only way to fix the problem. My brother immediately called me to see if I had any knowledge on the subject of back injuries in dogs, and sadly I didn’t have much to tell him.

However, I knew someone that could help! Lisa Luckenback is the creator of the Wiggleless Back Brace for Dogs. When my brother called, I quickly realized that back issues in dogs are something that we don’t typically educate ourselves about until we’re faced with the problem. Sadly, they are more common than most pet owners realize, and we should really know the signs and symptoms in advance.

This week Lisa agreed to speak with me about back issues in dogs and tell us a little bit about why she created the Wiggleless back brace. She also explains why this brace is so unique. In this week’s podcast, Lisa shares her knowledge of common back injuries and which breeds are most susceptible to back problems.

May 5, 2017

I am often asked by pet owners how they can save money on their pet budget. It is easily the question that I am asked most often. I always tell people that it doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg to raise a pet. Oftentimes, pet owners waste money on unnecessary items and spend more money than they need to on essential supplies.

Today I’m sharing my tips on how to save money on your pet budget. I’ve broken it down into 6 categories, which are:

  1. Your budget
  2. A pet emergency fund
  3. Save on supplies
  4. Save on treats
  5. Save on food
  6. Save on pet care

This week I’m breaking it all down for you and explaining how you can save money on your pet budget and even squirrel some extra cash away for any emergencies that may pop up. If you follow this advice, I promise that your pet budget will be under control in no time!

May 4, 2017

There are so many subscription services for pets. It seems like every time I get online there is an advertisement for a new type of subscription service for dogs or cats. From dog food to treats and toys to grooming supplies, you can get everything you need for your pooch shipped right to your door. But, are these subscription services worth it?

I had the pleasure of interviewing Marco Giannini this week. Marco is the CEO of The Naked Dog Box. While the name definitely drew me in, it’s the dog food inside that really caught my attention. The Naked Dog is a subscription service that will deliver high quality dog food to your door every two weeks.

Marco explained the benefits of this subscription service and also shared some tips on how to save a little money when signing up for these services.

Also, he shares the promo code TopDogTips10 for our readers and listeners to try their first box of The Naked Dog food for just $10. Listen to the interview and check out the company’s website before deciding if this is right for you, but keep in mind that subscription services are much more convenient than taking weekly trips to the pet store.

May 3, 2017

Have you tried telemedicine for health advice? Most of us have sought health advice from the internet for ourselves or someone in our household. Have you ever thought about trying it for your pets? This week I wanted to find out if veterinary telemedicine was a reliable way to seek treatment for our furry family members.

I spoke with James Andrews, DVM, to gain some insight on this growing market. James is a veterinarian who also has an interest in technology. In December of last year I spoke with him about his vet tech company, Felcana. This week I wanted to ask his opinion of the veterinary telemedicine field currently, and how he thinks we will see it develop in the future.

James gave me some great tips for pet owners who are interested in using telemedicine right now. While it is a suitable way to seek treatment for some conditions, we really shouldn’t be fully reliant on it just yet.

James explained that there is a lot of information that veterinarians still do not have access to when they are only able to see pictures or videos of our animals. He also gave some great insight into how he thinks veterinary telemedicine will progress in the future and the kinds of diagnostic gadgets that we may soon be able to purchase for our pets.

Mar 14, 2017

Holistic veterinary care for pets is not as cut and dry as some people think. This week I’m talking about what holistic care for pets is and what to expect if you’re thinking about finding a holistic veterinarian in your area. Do you know the differences between holistic veterinary medicine and traditional veterinary care?

Holistic does not mean organic or natural, and it doesn’t mean that your pooch will have to start smelling incense and doing doggy yoga. Holistic care looks at the entire animal, not just the symptoms that he is presenting. Not only is a great way to help your pet, but it may actually save you money by reducing the need for costly traditional treatments.

Working with a holistic veterinary team may be the best choice for your young pet or your aging senior. In this week’s episode I explain the different types of treatments that may be recommended by a holistic veterinarian and what that means for the pet owner. Why would your dog need chiropractic care? Will you have the time to treat your pet holistically? Will these treatments fit into your budget?

 

Mar 14, 2017

Shelter dogs may not always be what they seem. A dog that barks and paces frantically in a shelter may actually be a very quiet and well-mannered house dog. Shelters are an overwhelming environment filled with smells and sounds that most dogs aren’t familiar with. Thankfully, there are people like Richie Camden who understand this and take the time to get to know the dog before passing judgment.

I live in Maine, so sled dog racing is quite a popular winter sport here. I don’t know much about the sport myself, but I do enjoy going to races and watching the incredible dogs at work. When I heard about Richie I knew I had to speak with him and hear his story. You see, Richie is a musher whose team is comprised of Siberian Huskies who have been rescued from shelters.

Richie tells the story of his pack in this week’s episode, and I hope it inspires you to see shelter dogs in a whole new light. He explains that his dogs aren’t just for work. All 14 dogs live in the house with his family. They are pets first and sled dogs second. In this episode you’ll hear Richie explain that his goal isn’t to win sled dog races, it’s to adopt homeless pets and give them a quality, loving home where they can be happy and comfortable.

Mar 2, 2017

Fostering pets is a great way to help animals in need, and in this week’s episode I’m also going to explain how it can help you and your family as well. There are a number of reasons why pet shelters and rescue organizations may be looking for foster families. While some people may think these animals need special care or have a behavior issue, that’s not always the case.

The overpopulation of pets is a growing epidemic, and shelters don’t always have room for all the homeless pets in their area. By fostering, you’re opening your home and your heart to an animal in need, and you’ll also be keeping a spot open in your local shelter for another homeless animal. That’s right; if you shelter a pet it will actually help two animals!

In this week’s episode I explain all the benefits of sheltering an animal and give you some great resources for learning about foster programs in your area. It’s easier than you may think to get started, and you can usually work around your schedule. Whether you want to foster for a few weeks or long term, you’ll be able to find a program in your area that needs your help.

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