Connecting Friends For Life

The SAHS is a non-profit, no-kill organization that has served Bexar County and its surrounding areas since 1952.

Our mission is to protect and improve the lives of dogs and cats by providing shelter, care, adoption, rescue, spay and neuter programs, and community education.

Come meet Simon at the SAHS today! He’s a 2 month old sweetheart with a very calm pawsonality! #SAHS #Puppy #Adopt #ConnectingFriendsForLife #instagramdogs #instadog

We have all experienced the moment of spending time with our dog cuddling or playing and all of a sudden he/she plants a sloppy wet kiss (lick) across your face. However, if you are the owner of a Chow Chow or a Chinese Shar-Pei you might know something about this “kiss” that other dog owners might not be aware of. Not all dogs have pink tongues! Some breeds, such as the Chow Chow and the Shar-Pei have completely black or bluish tongues or spots of blue/black on their pink tongue.

 

You might be wondering why some dogs have this coloration instead of the more common solid pink tongue. The answer is really simple. It’s just extra pigment! Humans have freckles or birthmarks, which is exactly the same concept.

Just as some people have more freckles than others, some dogs may have pink tongues and some may not. Most dogs are born with pink tongues and some may develop the darker pigmentation as they age. For example, purebred Chow Chows are born with the pink coloration and it darkens as they age. It is simply a unique characteristic of some canine cuties!

Some breeds, specifically the ones mentioned above, are more prone to having blackish tongues. DogBreedInfo.com provides a list of several playful pooches that have also been known to this feature. Some of the breeds include:

  • Akita
  • Australian Shepherd
  • Bichon Frise
  • Collie
  • Dalmatian
  • German Shepherd
  • Golden Retriever
  • Mastiff
  • Shiba Inu

Nevertheless, it is very important to keep in mind that a dog’s tongue is also an important indicator of his/her overall health. Here are a few coloration warnings according to HealthyPets.com to keep an eye on (contact your veterinarian if the coloration does not return to normal):

  • A pale or white tongue may be a sign of weakened body condition
  • A deep red tongue may indicate hyperactivity of one of the organ systems of the body
  • A bluish or purple-tinged tongue can suggest pain or congestion somewhere in the body
  • A yellow-orange tongue may indicate gastritis and gall bladder or liver malfunction

So now you know, some dogs just have a little extra pigmentation, which makes their tongues black. It’s that straightforward! Next time your cuddly companion or playful pal surprises you with a little extra puppy lovin’ you might take a moment to see if your dog has a black tongue! Or if you’re curious to see if any of the dogs at the San Antonio Humane Society possess this unique trait, check out SAhumane.org/dogs.

Meet Lana! She’s a 2 month old Miniature Dachshund with an awesome pawsonality and the cutest ears. She and her adorable brother, Louie, will be available for adoption tomorrow at the SAHS! #Adopt #SAHS #Puppy #ConnectingFriendsForLife

Barbecues, beach days, and big fireworks! You know what that means—it’s the 4th of July! Celebrating the birth of our nation can be lots of fun, but our furry friends may not share our excitement.

According to PetMD, “Unlike people, pets don’t associate the noise, flashes, and burning smell of pyrotechnics with celebrations. Pets are terrified of fireworks, and often panic at the loud whizzes and bangs they produce.”

Because pets, both dogs and cats, can become so frightened by fireworks they often end up running away in a panic and ultimately get lost or killed. Coincidentally, July 5th is the busiest day of the year for animal shelters according to the American Humane Association.

How can you help your darling dog or cuddly cat stay safe during your 4th of July festivities? Here are a couple tips:

  • Make sure your pet has up-to-date identification tags and that they’re wearing them on their collar. Or, consider investing in a microchip for your pet. You can microchip your pet at the SAHS for only $25!  It’s a quick and easy process.
  • Create a space where your pet can retreat to avoid that stress that the loud booms of firecrackers can cause. Turn on soothing music or a TV show to muffle the sounds.
  • Keep your pet indoors as much as possible.
  • If you plan on going to see a fireworks display, please leave your pet at home.
  • Never use fireworks directly near or around your pet.
  • Do not leave your pet outside unattended.

However, fireworks are not the only worry for our furry companions during 4th of July weekend. PetMD provides the following tips of how to keep your pet safe during the merriment:

  • Don’t put insect repellant on your pet that isn’t specifically for pet use. The same applies to using human sunscreen on your dog or cat. Don’t assume because you can use it that it’s a safe product to use on your pet; many human safe products may be toxic to animals.
  • Alcoholic drinks poison pets. If a domestic dog or cat consumes alcohol (including beverages such as, beer) they can become dangerously intoxicated, go into a coma, or die from respiratory failure.
  • Keep glow in the dark jewelry away from your pet. If they were to chew on the jewelry they could swallow pieces of plastic or other foreign material, which could be harmful to their health.
  • No matter how much they beg, do not share your human food with your dog or cat. Onions, coffee, avocado, grapes, raisins, salt and yeast dough are all possible hazards for dogs and cats.
  • Lighter fluid and matches are harmful to pets.
  • Citronella insect control products can be harmful to your pet as well and cause them to become ill.

Of course we love our fur babies and want to spend our memory making moments with them. However, our pets don’t enjoy holidays, such as the 4th of July in the same ways that we do as humans. Therefore, it’s best to learn how to celebrate safely! To learn more about firework pet safety visit SAhumane.org!

Happy 4th of July from the SAHS! Celebrate safely!

As the summer months begin many people will begin going on various vacations. However, if you are a pet owner it’s important to know how to make traveling fun and safe for your furry friend.

There are several things to take into consideration when traveling with your dog or cat, including: health and safety, crates, identification, form of transportation (car, plane, train, etc.), weather conditions, packing for your pet, and lodging. Be prepared before you take your pet on vacation; the more prepared you are the safer and happier your pet is!

Health

Before you begin your summer fun with your precious pet, be sure to keep in mind his/her health. Even if your pet doesn’t have any known health concerns, it is always a good idea to take them for a quick check up at your veterinarian before taking him/her on an extended vacation. Also, make sure that your pampered pooch or curious kitty is up-to-date on their vaccinations before traveling and that you have their shot records packed just in case. However, if you are traveling on an airplane with your pet health certifications are required. Another way to ensure that your pet stays happy and healthy while on vacation is to bring their regular food as well as local or bottled water to keep their routine as normal as possible.

Crates

We love to treat our pets as members of the family, but we sometimes forget about transportation safety. For our protection in any mode of transportation we use a seat belt; however, dogs and cats do not have this resource for protection. What can you do to help keep your beloved pet safe while traveling? One option is investing in a crate! Whether you are required to keep your pet in a crate, such as for airline travel, or if you’re worried Fluffy or Fido might get into trouble in the hotel room purchasing a crate can be beneficial to both you and your pet. According to the American Kennel Club here are some things to think about when buying a crate:

  • Large enough to allow the animal to stand, turn and lie down.
  • Strong, with handles and grips, and free of interior protrusions.
  • Leak-proof bottom covered with absorbent material.
  • Ventilation on opposing sides, with exterior rims or knobs to prevent blocked airflow.
  • "Live Animal" label, arrows upright, with owner’s name, address and phone number.
  • Stock the crate with a comfortable mat, favorite toys and a water bottle.

If you’re a dog owner, check out the Dog Travel Company for new and convenient ways to travel with your best bud by air, sea, train, or automobile!

Identification

No pet owner enjoys entertaining the thought that their adored dog or cat might somehow get lost or stolen, nevertheless during traveling it is very important to prepare for any situation. The best way to increase your pet’s chances of recovery is by properly identifying him/her. This is such an easy and quick way to keep your pet safe and keep your vacation from taking an unfortunate turn for the worst. Be sure that your cat or dog has a secure collar with appropriate identification that provides contact information. Another more permanent option is a microchip; for more information about microchipping visit SAHumane.org!

Transportation

Whether train, boat, bus, airplane, or car it is important to consider what kind of transportation you decide to use when going on vacation with your dog or cat. Here are a few things American Kennel Club suggests to consider for different types of transportation for your pet:

Car

  • Get your dog/cat used to the car by letting him sit in it with you without leaving the driveway, and then going for short rides.
  • Keep the car well-ventilated. If the dog/cat is in a crate, make sure that fresh air can flow into the crate
  • Dog Owners: Stop frequently for exercise and potty breaks. Be sure to clean up after your dog.

Airplane

  • Each airline has its own set of rules for canine/feline air travel. You should call for information and make arrangements well in advance of your trip.
  • All airlines require health certifications and proof of vaccinations.

Train, Bus, Boat

  • Do your research before you decide to travel by train or bus because not all allow animal passengers.
  • If you travel by boat, such as a cruise, be sure to check with your specific boat because, again, some allow animal boarding and some do not.

Weather Conditions

CesarsWay.com suggests that checking the weather conditions prior to a vacation with your pet, especially dogs, can be helpful to having an awesome vacation. Being aware of weather conditions will help you care for your pet throughout the trip. For example, if it’s raining you will need to be aware that your travel could be slowed down and you may have to let your dog have a bathroom break in the rain. Also, if it is cold you may need to pack some things to keep your pet warm.

Packing

You may have spent tons of time thinking about what you would like to pack for yourself for vacation, but have you thought about your dog/cat? Here are some things that CesarsWay suggests you pack:

  • Food and food bowl
  • Water, water bottle and bowl
  • Leash
  • Toys
  • Medications
  • Blanket and towel
  • lBrush and shampoo
  • Flea comb and tick remover
  • Poop bags
  • Treats

Lodging

When you go on vacation to your home away from home, make sure that there is a home away from home available for your dog or cat as well. Not all lodging locations allow pets or some may have restrictions to the type of pets allowed. Therefore, it is important to do your homework beforehand to avoid an unpleasant situation for you and your dog/cat. Check out these websites to help plan your vacation and accommodate your pet: Trips with Pets, Bring Fido and Dog Friendly.

Are We There Yet?

Make a checklist while you prepare for vacation not only for yourself, but for your pet as well! These simple tips will help make your summer fun even more enjoyable and take away the stress for you and your furry friends. Once you’ve done your homework, packed up, and prepared you are more than ready to create memories with your friend for life that will be priceless!

Do you feel like you know how to travel with your pets in a fun and safe way? If you would like to learn more please visit any of the websites above or keep up with SAhumane.org!