Santa Paws

This Christmas, Santa came to Home Away From Home to wish everybody a Merry Christmas!

New Years Resolutions

It’s hard to believe that twenty ten is over. Everyone is making their New Year’s resolutions and planning New Years Eve parties. It seemed as though Christmas came and went so quickly. And now it’s time to give the season one last hurrah by celebrating the new year. For many of us, the new year means a chance to try again. It’s a chance to press the reset button and start over. This year, even our dogs have resolutions and want to improve their daily lives! Here is their list of new years resolutions;

  1. Resist the temptation to run across the road to get the squirrel in the neighbor’s yard.
  2. Stay out of the cat’s litter box. “Kitty box crunchies” are not food.
  3. Introduce myself in more appropriate ways.
  4. I will not roll my toys behind the fridge.
  5. Stay away from the kid’s stuffed toys, or at least hide them in really good places when I’m done with them.
  6. Tolerate those homemade bandannas more.
  7. Shake the rainwater out of my fur BEFORE I enter the house.
  8. Try to stare at owner for hours on end till they take me for a walk.
  9. Recognize the difference between furniture and fire hydrants.
  10. I will not eat the cat’s food before or after they eat it.
  11. Meet and greet every single dog that comes across my path with the usual friendly sniffing gesture.
  12. Find more interesting things to roll in.
  13. Try to convince owner that I am a lapdog no matter how big I am.
  14. We do not have a doorbell. I will not bark each time I hear one on TV.
  15. Be more resourceful when sneaking food out of the garbage, from the kid’s hands and off the tables and kitchen counters.
  16. Only chase the cat when nobody’s looking.

Holiday Precautions

The last thing any pet owner wants to do this holiday season is make a trip to the vet’s office.  Amongst all the glory of the holidays, there are a few items that could be potentially dangerous to your pet. I mean cmon, that shiny tinsel looks like it would be a great play thing, right?  Who can blame our animals for finding holiday items appealing and fun to play with? However, the fact of the matter is every year vets treat animals for electrocution, ingestion of foreign objects, burns, cuts from broken glass, and poisoning from toxic plants or chemicals. With a bit of common sense and knowledge, we can protect our yuletide friends from holiday mishaps.

Although Pointsettias aren’t particularly tasty, they excrete a sap that cats and dogs find irresistable. If consumed, it can induce vomiting, throat and tounge irritation and gastrointestianal problems. If a cat or dog has consumed a large quantity of Pointsettia,  you should place a call to the vet immediately.   Two other holiday plants to be wary of are holly and mistletoe. These plants contain poisonous berries that have greater toxicity levels than the Pointsettia. If a large amount of either of these plants is consumed, a drop in blood pressure, breathing problems, hallucinations,  seizures or death may occur.  Be sure to be very careful with the placement of  holiday plants in your household. If your pet seems to be overly interested in a certain plant, make sure that it’s kept up high well out of paw reach.

Even the Christmas tree presents its own set of hazards. Pine needles can be ingested which can lead to obstructions and even perforations. The needles and sap of pine and fir trees is irritating. If your pet eats enough, they will likely suffer gastric upset.  Pets may also knock the tree over, so you can keep it in a closed off room to prevent this from happening. This stops pets from drinking water from the tree as well. The water usually contains sharp needles and chemicals used to preserve the tree. And of course, the ornaments, tinsel, electrical cords, and various other decorations pose another threat. Remember the cat in Christmas Vacation? Don’t let that be your pet! Tape your electrical cords to the floor, use ribbons instead of hooks for your ornaments, and elevate your candles.  

Not just during the holidays do we enjoy a lot of the foods that can be hazardous to our pets. Some types of food such as chocolate,  alcohol, caffeine, grapes and raisins, and excessively salty foods can make pets very ill. Poultry bones can splinter and perforate the digestive tract. These are just some extra things to keep in mind when little Jimmy is sneaking table scraps to Rover.   

 With these few simple precautions, your furry friend and you can enjoy the holidays safely.

Breed Profiles: Pharoah Hound

Our friend Bella is a Pharaoh Hound, an intelligent, courteous, and athletic breed. They are tall, slender, svelte dogs that were originally bred to be a keen hunter of small animals. Because of their original purpose, the Pharaoh is not good with small animals. He will chase after them and view them as prey.
Indoors, the Pharaoh Hound is a calm, peaceful breed. However, they love play outdoors and run incredibly fast.

It is necessary for an owner to have a safe, fenced in yard because these guys are capable of jumping high and digging beneath fences. These athletic beauties require stimulating daily exercise.

The Pharaoh Hound is independent, sensitive, loving, and gentle. In some accounts, they are even described as having a sense of humor. They are good with other dogs, cats and children and make devoted family pets. With strangers however, they tend to be more reserved. For this reason, they are incredibly good watchdogs. This is not to be mistaken as being a good guard dog. The observant Pharaoh Hound will alert its owner to anything out of the ordinary.

DID YOU KNOW? This breed has a truly unique trait of “blushing” when excited. When this occurs, the nose and ears turn a rosy color.
Health-wise, Pharaoh hounds are generally very hardy; living between 11 and 15 years. They have few genetic health concerns, but are very sensitive to insecticides and medications. Their ears are very thin and are prone to frostbite in cold climates.
The Pharaoh Hound is one of the oldest domesticated breeds in the world. Dating back to 3,000 BC, they originated in ancient Egypt. They have changed little with time and bear an uncanny resemblance to the Egyptian jackal god, Anubis. Eventually, they were brought to Malta where they were bred to hunt rabbits and other small game. Today, they are the national dog of Malta.
Pharaoh Hounds don’t take to obedience training as naturally as many other breeds do, despite their intelligence. This is because they were originally bred to hunt and to think for themselves. With the use of repetitive commands, the Pharaoh bores easily. The trainer needs to keep training interesting and positive. If training is done correctly, they can learn new commands at an above-average rate and enjoy lure-coursing.


The word “Moxie” means the ability to face adversity with spirit, courage, daring, and energy. (more…)

Dolly’s Birthday Party

Not all parties are for people!


Planning Holiday Pet Boarding

As the holidays are approaching, you are probably thinking of where your furry friend will stay while you’re away. Right now is the time to plan since this is a very busy time of year for boarding facilities. It is also required by most kennels for vaccinations to be updated before your pet’s stay. (more…)