Tag Archives: dog safety

Do Not Pet The Dog!

Do NotPet!

Being in the dog industry for as many years as I have, there seems to be a universal concern from Pet Parents who do not want their dog approached by strangers.

…How to tell others politely not to pet your dog!

Pet parents have many reasons for not wanting their dog’s touched by strangers. It may be for safety issues or concerns about dog behavior, but also someone may just want so me peace and quiet while taking their best bud along.

Perhaps the dog is snarly… Or perhaps the dog has been sick recently… Or the dog nips at children as their squeals of laughter or quick little feet get them nervous… Or the dog just does not like it!

Grinning Dog

Ok… So, we are not too sure if that is a smile – or a snarl…!! But he adores and protects your family!

The dog is not a BAD dog because he does not want to be touched by strangers. And you are not a BAD pet parent for yelling out to have someone pull back their child from approaching! But it feels that way. Doesn’t it?

My dog is a great dog and we go everywhere together. She was abused as a puppy and she does not like strangers touching her. That should not mean that my cup of java at Starbuck’s outside café needs to be ruined with verbal “Do Not Touch” warnings every two minutes. I should be able to walk my dog when others may be on the same route without worrying for her discomfort if someone approaches to pet her. When we have people to the house I vest her, as well, as a reminder that petting her is not what she wants.

As pet parents, it is our duty to keep our pets safe from the hands of others. And it goes without saying that we all have a firm responsibility to the safety of other people and children if our dog is a little snarly or may nip. The answer is to allow your dog to be your voice. Your dog can wear a clear highly visible warning.

Since we live in a society that respects our pets and touching them affectionately is just a natural thing we do, SHONGear Designs has just announced the introduction of a new high visibility vest called their “DO NOT PET” SHONVest .

THe NICE way to warn others that petting “Mr. Kisses” may not be the best idea!

The Do Not Pet SHONVest™ quickly alerts others not to approach and pet your companion.
Do Not Pet is a clear message.

The Vest is made from is a light weight, durable nylon that comes in an array of sizes from X-Small to X-Large to accommodate most different dog breeds. Here is a picture of Niecie wearing her vest.

Niecie’s vest took away my megaphone! And is now allowing me to enjoy an uninterrupted cup of java (not 100% of the time… but close) at our local coffee bar… and to feel good that my dog is wearing my voice! And people “hear” it nuch of the time. And most of all, Niecie can relax and enjoy being outside with me for a Sunday afternoon “Time Out”.

We hope that it does the same for you, as well. Go visit www.SHONGear.com to check it out and order one today!

Kindest Regards,

Missing pets: Steps to Avoid the Heartache of a Lost Pet

“One in Three” pets go missing in their lifetime. That is a horrifying statistic!
As pet parents to two phenomenal dogs and one sweet kitty, one of our family’s most heart felt fears is a pet going missing either while we are traveling or for some other unforeseen mishap.

We feed our animal the best food that we can afford, attend to their vet needs every 6 months as advised, train them to listen to us… But there will be times that dogs will be dogs and cat will be cats!

My conversation today is about our dogs. When we take them to our local pet park, we have observed many times how they run and play freely. Sniffing out all kinds of doggy aromas. The become oblivious to only tracking as many scents as possible. Moving constantly. Sometimes locating themselves far at the other side of the park… And then watch them as they suddenly remember– they were with us!?!
Their heads raise up. They search, eying every corner of the park. They spot us and run like the wind back to their pack leaders.

But that is a controlled environment where you are maintaining control over your dogs, but they just don’t know it. They don’t understand the fences are still giving you control. And those fences are nowhere to be seen when we are not at home or in a play area like the pet park. Our dogs just always see that innate invitation of the undiscovered open field or new places to sniff. Those are seductive invitations to our pups, who do not understand the difference of a controlled or an unsafe environment.

Some dogs are natural born escape artists who have honed their skills well, just to get to taste that freedom of discovery. Some are patient and wait until a door is left ajar…maybe a hotel room door? Or a car door? New scents just pull at them so much stronger than your grasp on the leash sometimes. So many opportunities are there just ‘to be a dog’!

Here are a list of things every pet parent should do in order to prevent separation from your dog and mechanisms to employ to have your pet returned to you quickly, if separation happens:

  • 1. For security, collar your dog with a metal buckle collar, as opposed to a plastic buckle. See this sample buckle collar taken from Foster and Smith’s Catalog Buckle collar your dog with his tags even when you use a harness or control collar. Harnesses and control collars do not stay on the dog permanently. Always stick 2 fingers between your pet and the collar to assure it is not too tight. See our Niecie’s picture down below.
  • 2. Maintain up to date tags identifying your pet and your current information. Invest in a rabies tag from your Vet when your pet is vaccinated. The control numbers on the rabies tag identify your Vet, giving another opportunity to have your pet safely returned to you. Tags should contain your cell phone number for strangers to quickly locate you.
  • 3. Always leash your dog when away from the home. Your pet should be leashed before the door is opened. Pet trainers recommend a 6 foot leash dog, but a 4 foot leash can be used. Retractable leashes are great for your pup’s walk but should be used with caution as pedestrian and vehicle traffic is hazardous away from home and your neighborhood. A 4 or 5 foot leash will keep your dog close to you under unfamiliar conditions. Never use a rope or a chain to wrap around your pets neck as a leash. This endangers your pet and can harm them.
  • 4. If you have a yard for fido, always do a fence check to assure that all of the boards are secure, or the chain link is not broken leaving a hole for your escape artist to use.
  • 5. When traveling in the car, always tether your dog’s leash to a locked seat belt. Or better, use a travel harness that attached to the seat belt. A great example of a product is called the Kwik Connect Harness sold by Foster’s and Smith (We just LOVE the folks there!). They show a video depicting how easy it is to use.
  • 6. Invest money in a GPS system such as a TrackR for your dog’s collar. You can track where he is via your cell phone.
  • 7. Chip your pets. Give your pet a chance to be reunited with you if they do escape. Have you read the stories of how a pet had been found 3000 miles across the country because they were micro chipped? Keep your address and phone number up to date with the microchip company. An example of a great microchip company is Home Again. But your Vet may recommend another great Microchip brand as there are a few on the market today.
  • 8. Don’t let your dog be mistaken as a stray. Mark them with a high visibility travel vest, such as the Traveling Pet SHONVest(r).


This vest will alert others quickly that your dog is somewhere that he should not be. It can carry your itinerary, telling strangers what hotel you are staying at and provide alternate contact information. Your dog can also carry his medical story and medications that can save his life, until you are reunited.

Sometimes it is best to prepare for the unimaginable and take the extra efforts to keep your pet safe.
We always mark our dogs, when traveling with them in the car–
Just in case they decide to be dogs!
Kindest regards,

SHONGear Designs