Be it walks, taking an RHS dog training class or even a little swimming when the water warms, keeping your dog mentally and physically active will help burn off access energy and avoid boredom – and the associated issues that can result such as chewing on your favourite shoes! Getting into a regular routine of exercise and play will do wonders for your dog – and you too!
Here are some great tips to help keep your pooch happy and active!
- Go for a discovery walk – It’s not always how far you walk, but what you DO on that walk. Dogs love to explore, sniffing around almost anything to see who’s been there and to take in all the smells of their surroundings. Why not go for a 40-minute walk and let your dog spend as much time as she wants to sniff around a tree or whatever she wants – and let her choose where the walk goes! You may only get a block or two, but your dog will love it and be ready for a snooze when you get home. All that nosework will be tiring!
- Break out the toys – Dogs love to play. Playing provides not only physical exercise, but it can also exercise their mind. You can use a toy to reward a good “sit” or simply toss it across the yard and have him bring it back. Hiding treats under one of 3 or 4 upside-down buckets will get his detective skills going as he tries to figure out which bucket contains the treasure. Keep an assortment of toys and games on hand to keep things interesting!
- Take a training class – The RHS offers a variety of classes that are all based on play and reward. From the basics in our Foundation 101 class and Leash Reactivity, to Agility and Nosework, learning new skills not only provides excellent exercise and stimulation, it develops overall good behaviour and habits. You can check out all the classes on our dog training website.
- Play scent games – Hide some treats in a few boxes or containers around the room and encourage your dog to sniff them out. Make it easy at first by only loosely covering the treats so she learns the game. Gradually make it a little more challenging by changing the hiding places and more tightly closing the container to keep the game fun.
- Go for a run – Winters usually mean a lot of time spent on the couch while the snow and wind blow outside. Time to get outside! Going for a gentle run or jog will help both you and your pet shake off the winter blues. Start easy at first and gradually build up speed and distance at a pace you are both comfortable with. Be sure to have a solid harness and a leash no more than six feet long to keep everyone close and safe. Having some water for both of you is a good idea too. If running at night, be seen with clothing with reflective striping. Or, why not attach a small light to your dog’s collar for extra visibility? These are inexpensive and can be purchased at most pet stores.
- Practice some old tricks – Has it been a while since you put in a good session of “sit”, “down” or “rollover”? Grab a few treats and review some old tricks and maybe even add a few new ones. There’s plenty of inspiration to be found with reward-based online videos or training classes.
- Challenge him with a puzzle toy – Instead of feeding your pet in her bowl, put her kibble in a puzzle toy. These games can be homemade or purchased, and usually allow you to hide kibble or treats under removable covers or sliding drawers. Others require your dog to roll or manipulate the toy to release kibble. Pets may not understand the game at first so be prepared to show them how it works so they don’t get frustrated.
Whatever activities you choose, be sure that they are ones both you and your pet enjoy. Remember, the goal is exercise and mental stimulation, but you want it to be fun too!
The Regina Humane Society (RHS) is asking you to help make the holidays merry and bright for 160 homeless pets currently waiting to find their special someone in an adoption campaign aiming to send each one Home for the Holidays.
What better gift to give a homeless animal than a caring family and a warm home? If an individual or family has carefully considered their decision and the responsibility of a new pet, the holidays can be an optimum time to adopt. This time of year, families are more likely to have more time to spend with each other and with their new companion animal.
Pet Promise Certificates for a new companion animal are the perfect way to honour the holiday wishes of someone who has expressed a sustained interest in owning a pet and has the ability to care for it responsibly. Despite the common misconception of pets as gifts, research shows that pets acquired in this manner actually are less likely to be relinquished than pets acquired by the individual themselves. RHS Pet Promise Certificates can be easily downloaded here and printed for holiday gift-giving.
Every RHS adoption includes spay/neuter surgery, vaccinations, tattoo, microchip and a post-adoption veterinarian exam at a local clinic. Animals available for adoption can be viewed 24/7 here.
Think outside the box – help a shelter pet go Home for the Holidays!
Click here to sponsor a homeless shelter pet’s adoption today!
Summer’s here and with pandemic restrictions set to ease, many will be looking to do some traveling to visit friends and family or simply get away for some rest and relaxation! If you’re intending to take your pets with you, be it across the country or to visit friends at the lake, be sure to plan ahead. Here are our top ten tips to ensure a happy and safe vacation for everyone!
- Visit the vet.
Consider scheduling a visit to the vet before you leave on holidays to ensure your pet is healthy, up to date on vaccinations and able to make the trip. It is also a great time to pick up any medications that may be required for an extended time away from home. Also, make a list of vets in the area that you will be vacationing in, just in case.
- Plan your stay ahead of time.
If you plan to stay in a hotel, resort or campground, check to ensure that the it allows for your type of pet. Some accommodations may say they’re pet friendly but have restrictions on the size of the animal and require your pet to be crated if left alone.
- Pack well.
Pack all of your pet supplies including leash and harness, food and water from home (and a bowl for use while traveling), required medications, vaccination and ownership papers, first aid kit and a couple of favourite toys for comfort.
- Buckle up.
Pets should always be secured while traveling by car with a properly fitting car harness or in an appropriately sized carrier or kennel. Unsecured pets could be severely injured or injure others in case of an accident.
- Watch the windows.
Avoid letting your pet stick their head out the window while you drive. Although they may love having the wind blow through their fur, they are subject to injury from insects or highway debris.
- Take a break.
Make the journey comfortable for your pet by planning plenty of rest stops so your pet can stretch their legs and visit the nearest tree if needed.
- Never leave your pet alone in a vehicle, even for a few minutes.
Temperatures can rise very quickly to levels that can result in severe injury to your pet or even death. Rolling down the windows or leaving the air conditioning running are not suitable solutions.
- Know the rules.
Make sure you know local laws at your destination; some may ban or restrict certain types of animals or specific breeds. Also, be sure to know the rules with respect to where you can and cannot walk with your pet such as parks and beach areas.
- Watch out.
Although your pet may do very well-off leash at home, it’s not always the same case in a new area where sounds, smells, traffic and other animals (including wildlife) may differ. Avoid any wandering and keep a close eye on your pet.
- Ensure identification is clear and accurate.
Should your pet become separated from you, clear and accurate identification is critical in finding your pet. Be sure your pet is properly identified with collar tags and microchip and that all of your contact information with your vet and the microchip company are up to date. Whenever possible include a collar tag with your contact information when away from home, such as a cellphone number, so you can easily be reached on the road.
Each spring, the Regina Humane Society receives many calls about “orphaned” wildlife or birds. While all have good intentions, disturbing the animals would likely do more harm than good.
If you encounter baby wildlife, please keep the following in mind:
- If a young bird has fallen out of the nest, you may return it to the nest if it is immediate danger, but it is best to leave it alone. The mother will not reject the baby because you have touched it and babies usually fall out of the nest as a natural part of learning to fly;
- If you find a young hare with no obvious injuries, leave it alone or put it back where it was found because the mother is likely nearby and will return once you leave. She will not reject it because you touched it;
- Most young wild animals do very poorly in captivity. The best chance for their survival is to be reunited with their mother;
- It is especially important to avoid contact with young raccoons and skunks because they can be carriers of rabies and parasites;
- It is against the law to keep a wild animal.
We also receive calls regarding geese and other birds nesting in unusual places such as parking lots, fields or alleys. Unless the bird is injured, it is best to leave it be. While the location of the nest may seem unusual to us, they have chosen it based on their natural instincts and will very likely be just fine if left alone. If you are concerned about a young wild animal and an adult animal has not been seen for several days or the animal is injured, contact your local conservation officer, Salthaven West, or the Wascana Centre Authority (306-522-3661) if within the park, for assistance (please note that the RHS is not equipped to handle wildlife).
There is almost never a good reason to remove a young wild animal from its natural environment.
What Is Socialization?
Socialization is a term that is used for exposing puppies to different people, places and experiences so that they learn to not be frightened of these things later on in life.
If socialization is done properly, dogs can meet new people and go to strange places while behaving in a relaxed and confident manner. If a puppy has not been properly socialized, they may develop behaviour problems later on in life such as lunging, barking and biting at new people or develop intense fears to things like car rides and loud noises.
The period between 3-16 weeks of age is a critical period known as the socialization period. Proper socialization must be done during and continue after this timeframe in order to prevent future behaviour problems. In some cases, puppies that are not properly socialized in this critical period can develop severe behaviour problems that can make them unsuitable as pets as adults.
How Do We Socialize Puppies?
By exposing your puppy to different people, animals and situations such as going to the veterinary clinic or hearing a vacuum or fireworks for the first time, we can teach puppies to not fear novel situations as they get older. This is done by introducing them to these experiences in a way that makes them feel safe and rewarding them when they react to these scenarios in a calm and relaxed manner. Many people will socialize their puppies by taking them to puppy classes, to friends or family’s houses, allowing them to meet the neighbourhood kids and going to dog friendly stores.
Socialization During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Necessary social isolation and quarantine measures to prevent transmission of COVID-19 means that puppies whose socialization period falls during this time may be at a disadvantage. This does not mean that it is impossible to socialize puppies during this time, but we need to do things a bit differently.
Socialization at Home:
- Allow your puppy to walk across many different types of surfaces such as carpet, linoleum, the empty bathtub, plastic, gravel and even strange surfaces such as tin foil. You may hide treats and set up obstacles to make it a fun game as the puppy explores the area.
- Introduce your puppy to many different types of sounds such as the vacuum cleaner, dishwasher, doorbell, power tools and the radio to acclimatize them to the real world. You may play sounds such as fireworks or sirens on your computer or phone. Remember to reward them handsomely for calm and relaxed behaviour.
- Play dress-up. Put on different hats, coats, boots, sunglasses and even the mask you wear to protect yourself from COVID-19. Have fun with it! Put on your old Halloween costumes to teach puppies that different appearances are nothing to fear.
Socialization Around Town:
- Go for a drive. Taking a drive around town can help to reduce anxiety associated with car rides. Going through a drive-through can help expose your puppy to new people.
- Go outside. Allow your puppy to observe new people by sitting with your puppy at a safe social distance and rewarding them for calm and confident behaviour. Try to sit with your puppy in one new location everyday so that they can observe the world around them.
***Please be aware that until your puppy has had its full set of immunizations, your puppy is susceptible to diseases such as parvo virus. It is important to avoid high-dog traffic areas and avoid contact with the ground where other dogs may have been.
Many people are working at home right now, but remember that when you do go back to work the puppy will need to learn how to be comfortable when left alone. Make sure to provide some alone time for your puppy in a crate or a small room so that they can learn how to be confident on their own. This will help to reduce separation anxiety.
Getting a new puppy is a fun and exciting time. The time that you put into training and socialization now will pay off enormously in the future!
When we find a litter of kittens, our good-hearted instincts tell us to rush to the aid of these fragile felines immediately. Thankfully, human intervention is typically not required in most cases.. In fact, in most cases when kittens are only a few weeks of age, the best thing we can do is leave the kittens alone. Mom will likely return shortly, and it’s critical that the kittens remain in her care during this time as she offers the best chance for their survival.
If you find kittens, and are absolutely certain that they are orphaned, you can then step in and help by caring for the kittens until they’re old enough to find homes. Our easy to read chart will help you determine what the steps to take if you’ve found kittens with, or without, a mom.
Thinking about bringing kittens to the Shelter?
During kitten season, which lasts from April until October, the RHS can become overrun with kittens. It is critical to the health of all animals in our care that that we do not exceed our capacity to provide that care in a humane and effective way, and within our available resources. Please care for the kittens in your home until they’re eight weeks old. Our Wait ‘Til 8 Program will provide supplies, food and guidance to assist you as you foster the kittens until they are old enough to find new homes.
Click here to learn more about what to do when you find roaming animals.
Similar to so many organizations, the Regina Humane Society has adjusted the way we operate in order to keep our staff, volunteers and supporters safe. However, as an essential service provider, we are committed to helping animals in need. Although many of our programs and services have changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our mission has not. We remain dedicated to improving the well-being of animals in our community.
The following changes to our hours are currently in place:
Hours of Operation
Office (including adoption pick-up, cremation pick-up, in-person donations):
Wednesday – Sunday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily
Closed Monday – Tuesday
Wednesday – Sunday, Noon – 6 p.m. daily
Closed Monday – Tuesday
Adoptions are by appointment only by calling 306-543-6363.
Lost & Found (including Cremation Service drop-off):
Monday – Sunday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily
Lost and Found: 306-543-6363 Ext 237
Animal Protection Services:
Monday – Sunday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily
Animal Emergencies only, 24 hours, 306-777-7700
While there’s much that remains out of our control, the RHS will continue to adapt as needed, look for innovative ways to help animals and our community and work tirelessly to remain true to our mission. We will continue to stay up-to-date with new information that arises on COVID-19 and will make changes as necessary in line with the recommendations of our public health agencies.
We thank everyone for your understanding and support as we work our way through this evolving situation.
Our world has changed. In the face of a global pandemic, we’ve all shifted how we work and live to keep our community safe. But there is one thing that hasn’t changed. The Regina Humane Society is still here for animals in need 24 hours a day. We can’t close our doors to animals in dire need. We continue to provide safe shelter, veterinary care, rehabilitation and animal protection services no matter what is happening beyond our doors.
We’ve always relied on the generosity of people like you to keep the Shelter operating. But right now, we need you more than ever as we struggle in the face of declining resources and money. With many of our critical programs, events and fundraisers canceled or postponed, today we are calling on you for your compassion, strong sense of community and urgent support to help care for animals in need.
Your donation, no matter the size, helps animals just like Reese. The very pregnant mom-to-be was wandering alone, scared and struggling, when she was rescued. Upon settling into the safety of the Shelter, she gave birth to eight healthy and adorable pups. Rolo, Henry, Heath, Ruth, Pixie, Dot, Patty and Lolly arrived under the watchful eye of our veterinary team. We’re so happy to share that this canine family is doing well in foster care and soon all nine will be ready for adoption.
With so much going on, and an uncertain economy, it’s hard for us to come to you right now, asking for your support. But we know, no matter what is happening in the world, that your concern for animals suffering neglect, abuse or abandonment hasn’t changed.
Will you make a donation to ensure we can keep helping animals at this critical time?
Click here to donate to our COVID-19 Relief Fund.
RHS Animal Protection Officer McNeill was there when Kong needed her most. The young dog was exhausted from running and was suffering from a snout full of porcupine quills when she came to his aid. The frightened pup began to relax as her kind words and gentle touch reassured him that there was nothing to fear.
Following surgery to remove the quills, Kong’s sad mug was replaced by the goofiest slobbery smile as his injuries began to heal. As is often the case, more porcupine quills requiring removal surfaced over the next week extending Kong’s stay at the RHS for a full recovery. During that time, his goofy personality and clown-like antics captured the hearts of everyone he met. Fully healed, Kong was made available for adoption last week and charmed his way into the heart of his new dad too!
Thanks to our generous community, we are able to be there for desperate animals who are alone and scared 24 hours a day. We’re all wishing you a lifetime of safe and happy adventures, Kong!
Before the pandemic, things were moving fast. We were often too busy for hobbies, family dinners, and that phone call with an old friend that we meant to have. With the need for social distancing though, we’ve been given time to slow down. We’ve been granted an opportunity to reflect on the things we have.
Here at the Regina Humane Society (RHS), we too are looking past the chaos and uncertainty and finding the good. We see kindness each day in our selfless staff who are committed to providing the best possible care to vulnerable animals in need. Although we have paused our volunteer programs at this time, we know we have a team of incredible people waiting on standby, willing to help when given the opportunity. We have amazing foster families available to provide temporary sanctuary to animals in need of extra care. We have supporters that stand with us no matter how great the storm.
The RHS is very fortunate for the goodness that surrounds us, however, much still remains unknown. Due to the uncertainty of the pandemic, many revenue generating programs have been halted and events have been postponed or canceled. But the constant need to provide care for animals remains unchanged and with this, we need your continued support more than ever.
We recognize that life is challenging for many right now, however if you’re able to, please consider making a donation to the RHS so we can continue to do what we do best – improving the lives of animals in our community.
As our community works together to slow the spread of COVID-19, social distancing is a crucial action we can all take to help. However, social distancing is a dramatic shift for most of us and does not come without challenges. It can be lonely for both humans and pets, so it’s important to continue doing things each day that evoke joy. We’ve compiled a list of ideas to help keep you and your pet entertained.
Going outside for a walk is a great way to practice social distancing while giving you and your pet fresh air and exercise. As the days get longer and warmer, walking can be a helpful way to appreciate the day. Do however avoid group walks and always be sure to practice a safe social distancing when passing by others.
If you are in self quarantine due to travel, illness or possible exposure to COVID-19 – please do not walk outside. Be sure to follow the regulations and directives of government and medical professionals.
Spring Cleaning? Use Trash to Make Treasures
Lots of household items can be turned into toys for our beloved pets. This will keep you busy and bring your friend new excitement. Maybe you have some old towels lying around that could gain new life as rope toys. Or a sock without a match that could be turned into a catnip knot. The internet is full of ideas for home made toys, just always be sure to supervise.
Brush Up on Skills
Now is the perfect time to work on tricks and training. Practicing skills and manners with your pet is an ideal way to help them burn energy while strengthening the bond you share. Maybe there’s a new trick you’ve always wanted your pet to learn, now’s the time! At the end of the day, you’ll feel great about what you were able to accomplish as a team!
Play a Game
There’s lots of awesome ways to keep your pet busy. Try hiding treats throughout the house and letting your pet use their nose to find them. Or maybe you have a puzzle toy that’s been collecting dust – if not, no problem! There are lots of ways to get your pet thinking using items you already have around the house. Try hiding treats under cups and getting your pet to select which one has the hidden treat. Or use a muffin tin and place treats under tennis balls or pairs of socks and let them move the objects to find the treats.
Know How Much You Mean to Your Pet
For many of us, these are uncertain and stressful times, but for our pets this is what dreams are made of. Many people are working from home, staying in during evenings and weekends, and shopping online, which all amounts to more time with our beloved pets. Know how important you are to your pet and how much happiness you are bringing them by being with them. Enjoy the snuggles and companionship and try to relax.
Metro Pet Market is passionate about animals and their welfare. As a proud Regina Humane Society partner, they provide us with approximately 1,000 ounces of premium high-moisture Lotus Natural Pet Food each month to serve the cats in our communal rooms.
Since 2007, Metro Pet Market has been leading the Real Food Revolution in Regina. They believe that nutrition is the foundation of good health, and sell only the freshest and most wholesome pet foods in their stores.
Many commercial foods contain filler ingredients and by-products which may not promote optimal health for our furry family members. Metro Pet Market offers a variety of natural and biologically-appropriate food for pets, including Lotus Natural Pet Foods’ unique line of holistic canned stews. We’re grateful they are here to help ensure that our Shelter cats receive quality nutrition.
To learn more about Metro Pet Market and what they can offer your furry friend, click here.
To learn more about the adorable cats and kittens available for adoption, click here.