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October 2010

Portable First Aid Kits For Hiking and Dog Parks

While hiking through the woods or playing in a dog park, you do not want to haul around a suitcase for possible pet first aid needs. You want something that fits into a fanny pack or camera case. Since we have limited space, we want many of these items to do double duty.


  1. Emergency muzzle. If we need to use the kit, your pet is probably in pain. Protect yourself. Any pet in pain, can and will bite.™ You can fashion a muzzle out of two shoestrings tied together, a lead, a belt or a tie. Just don’t use anything made out of wire as that will cut into a pets snout. For dogs with pushed in faces such as pugs or shih tzus, you can wrap the face with a sweater, towel, shirt, etc. Or you can buy one that fits your pet from any petstore.
  2. Roll of gauze or vet wrap. 
  3. Gauze pads. Leave them in the sealed bag until you are ready to use them.
  4. Bandanas. You can splint leg injuries with them or use them as slings to help carry out injured pets.
  5. Travel size sterile eye wash in a sealed bottled. Unsealed bottles are no longer sterile and have a way of becoming empty bottles. It can be used to flush out eye irritants and wounds. Bottled water is not sterile water.
  6. A Snout-To-Tail assessment form. It’s a good idea to do an assessment prior to strenous activity. You can determine beforehand if there are any injuries that may be exacerbated by exercise. Do an assessment after exercise to check for ticks, burrs or any injuries that occurred during your outing that went unnoticed. You can request a form at
  7. Travel size hydrogen peroxide. It can be used to induce vomiting.
  8. Small bottle of Novalsan to clean out wounds. You can buy a bottle at your veterinarian’s office. It doesn’t damage surrounding tissue like rubbing alcohol does.
  9. A laminated photo of you WITH your dog. It will establish ownership should you become separated and someone else finds them. 
  10. Liquid gel antihistamine and a safety pin. The fastest way to get an antihistamine into your pet’s system in case of an allergic reaction, is to poke a hole into the liquid gel cap and squirt directly onto the tongue. Ask your veterinarian for proper dosing for your pet. 
  11. A plastic card such as an old library card or any of the dozens you receive in junk mail. They have two uses. One is to flick out bee stingers. The second is for pad injuries. They are the perfect size for dog feet. 
  12. Antibiotic cream.
  13. Bandaids for you.
  14. Fold up water container. Some can fold up as small as a credit card. Water is important to prevent dehydration.
  15. Constricting band. Very important if you hike in areas with poisonous snakes.
  16. LED light that are made for keychains. You can put them on their collars so they are easier to see in the dark.


Learn how to use the items in your kit by taking a pet first aid class. Minutes matter in an emergency. Being prepared can mean the difference between life and death. To learn more about pet first aid visit me at


Alternative Solutions to Knowing When To Say No: Towel Togs

Bailey is a Labrabor Retriever, who at the age of five was adopted by Inge Bonfoey. Inge was Bailey’s fifth mom. Like most labs, Bailey’s mission in life was to spend as much time in the lake as possible followed by an equal amount of time following Inge around the house while wet. It resulted in an enormous amount of cleaning and laundry for Inge.


Towel Togs™ is Inge’s solution for dealing with a wet dog. It is absorbant microfiber snug robe fitted for a dog. You can use it home anytime your pet becomes wet from rain, snow or swimming, but that’s not the reason I like it. I see it as an alternative to sending home a wet dog from either a grooming shop or mobile groomer. 


There are some dogs that you simply cannot dry. They become too agitated by the noise of the dryers. They are at risk for a dryer induced seizure or heart attack. The snug fit of the Towel Togs™ helps calm an already agitated dog. 

  SDC11501 SDC11503

I plan to send clients to her webite at to purchase their own, but Inge offers wholesale prices to those that are inclined to stock them in their shops.  I used it on my own Golden Retriever, Ricky. He was dry in about an hour and not traumatized by my High Velocity dryer as he would normally be.


This is a great product that solves one of my grooming dilemnas. Thank you Inge and Bailey! 


Bailey and Inge 002


Books, Books and More Books - A List for Pet Professionals and Pet Owners

I love books! My personal library is quite extensive. Of course, some books are better than others. Here is a list of my favorites for both pet professionals and pet owners.


1. Beyond Suds and Scent by Barbara Bird. 

Everything you wanted to know about shampoos and conditioners including how they work, differences in product types, possible reactions, pH and marketing behind the product. It includes product ingredient lists AND their definations. You can find it at

 2. The Competition Grooming Guidebook by Christein Sertzel.

Whether you are a beginner, experienced or just thinking about it competition groomer this is the GO TO book. Every experience level will benefit from the complete information found in this book. You can find this book at

 3. Four Paws, Five Directions - A Guide to Chinese Medicine for Cats and Dogs by Cheryl Schwartz.

This a “head to toe” guide to Chinese Medicine that includes accupressure, food and herbal therapy. Practical procedures are explained in easy to understand language. It includes worksheets, diagnosis charts and photos. You can find this book at

 4. Go Mobile and Succeed by Ellen Ehrlich.

I wish I would have had this book when I first went mobile nine years ago. This is a must for anyone considering mobile grooming. Practical information that was once only available by trial and error You can find this book at or

 5. Holistic Aromatherapy for Animals: A Comprehensive Guide to the use of Essential Oils and Hydrosols with Animals by Kristen Leigh Bell.

The title says it all. It is a reference book for ANYTHING relating to essential oils and animals. There is a strong emphasis on safety. You can find this book at

 6. Learn How to Professionally Groom Cats by Kim Raisanen.

This is a step by step manual on how to groom cats. It includes safe and humane handling as well as toxic products for cats. You can find this book at


7. Let’s Go Fido by Mary Oquendo.

This is a quick and easy read full of valuable tips and advice for safely planning and traveling with pets. It contains resource contacts for tailoring specific travel plans for each pets’ needs. You can find this book at (shortly) or

 8. Notes From The Grooming Table by Melissa Verplank.

This book features over 150 breed profiles with step by step directions. The detailed illustrations make it a necessity for any groomer. You can find this book at and

 9. Practical Grooming Tips by Daryl Conner.

This is a “WOW” book. Totally indipensible for any groomer. You can find this book at

 10.Skin and Coat Care for Your Dog/ Skin and Coat Care for Your Cat by Lowell Ackerman. 

This is two separate books, each devoted solely to either cats or dogs. They contain foundation information on skin and coat that every groomer should know. It contains photos and detailed descriptions. You can find this book at

 11. To Your Dog’s Health by Mark Poveromo.

It contains everything you wanted to know about canine nutrition without input from billion dollar dog food companies. You can find this book at

 12. 2 Lion Hearted Groomers by Donna Smith, Virginia Woodmancy and Michael P. Doto.

This is a story of two life long groomer friends and their lifelong journey. An awesome read. You can find this book at


Every author listed has put an enormous amount of time, effort and knowledge into each of these books. Please don’t dimish their contributions for our benefit by pirating copies. Thanks and enjoy!