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Pets’ Winter Safety Guide

Even with their fur coat, pets still need help keeping warm this winter. Like us, pets can only handle so much time outside during cold, snowy weather.

Keep pets safe and warm this winter by petscaping and prepping! Just like you avoid chemical lawn products because of Safe Paws, take precautions during winter, too.

Wagging Our Way to Winter Pet Safety

Alarming Antifreeze. Dogs and cats love the smell and taste of antifreeze, but it’s extremely toxic. Keep it out of their reach and quickly clean up any spills. If your pet ingests antifreeze, call a vet immediately.

petscaping winter

Dust Off Deicers. When your pet walks on paths or sidewalks, deicers stick to their paws. Deicers can burn paws and are harmful if eaten. Use a pet-safe deicer on your property. Also, apply petroleum jelly to pets’ paw pads to prevent other deicers from sticking. If deicer remains, wipe off quickly.

petscaping winter

The Chilly Check. Other than daily walks and outdoor exercise, pets shouldn’t be outside much in winter! Dogs and cats can get hypothermia or frostbite, just like us. Put a coat on short-haired dogs. If pets are outdoors most of the day, provide a dry shelter, where they can rest and warm up.

petscaping winterStack on the Snacks. When outside, pets use lots of energy to stay warm. When they head back indoors, provide them with extra food and water to help them recuperate.

winter petscaping

The Snow Shake. After playing in the snow, pets try to shake off the snow and cold. Help warm them up with a post-snow towel dry. Wipe off paws with a damp towel to get rid of stuck snowballs.

A little knowledge goes a long way! Check out our Safe Paws program that keeps your pets safe in every season.

Paw-sitively Perfect DIY Dog Treats

As you’re planning the perfect gift for everyone on your list, add a special little treat for furry friends.

DIY, organic dog treats are super easy to make, and all the special pups in your life will go bonkers for them.

After all, you do everything to keep your pet safe and healthy all year long. And, they thank you for their Safe Paws!

Now, show them how tasty the holidays can be with these homemade, organic dog treat recipes.

homemade dog treatsBetter than a Bone: DIY Organic Dog Treats

We promise dogs will love these homemade, organic and healthy treats. You know every ingredient is the best of the best.

homemade dog treats

  1. Sweet Treats. Make these easy, organic dog treats with pumpkin, sweet potato or apple and carrots. Super healthy for pups, and they only take 5 minutes of prep time!
  2. Beggin’ for Bacon. Combine dog’s two favorite snacks — bacon and peanut butter — for an irresistible treat.
  3. Choose Chicken. A little bit sweet and a little bit savory, these homemade dog treats are packed with chicken and peanut butter for lots of protein power.
  4. Gourmet Goodies. A famous LA-based chef cooked up an absolutely fabulous dog treat recipe. Sure to get 5 out of 5 barks!
  5. Sensitive Snacks. Gluten-free: check. Wheat-free: check. Delight dogs with sensitive tummies by baking this tasty treat.

Once dogs get a whiff of these tasty, all-natural treats, they’ll never want to go back to store-bought. Save big at the store, and keep your dog healthy by making these year-round.

Keep Your Lawn Strong – Even in the Dead Of Winter

If you want a greener lawn in spring, did you know the most important time to organically fertilize your grass is the fall? Most people guess spring!

Learn why a fall fertilizer — or winterizer — is so important and how to correctly apply this organic lawn food.

Winter Lawn Care Essentials: Boost Your Lawn with an Organic Lawn Winterizerwinter lawn care

In the fall and winter, your lawn looks like it’s done growing, but it’s actually flourishing underground. Grass roots are absorbing nutrients so long as the ground isn’t frozen.

Applying a slow-release, organic lawn winterizer supplies your grass with nutrients throughout fall and winter.

A lawn winterizer is simply a food formulated to help your lawn survive winter. Lawn winterizers contain nitrogen to promote thicker, fast-growing grass come spring. This organic, winter fertilizer also possesses potassium to help lawns recover from summer droughts.

In spring, your grass then uses this stored energy to grow greener grass fast — usually by mid-March.

Put Your Lawn to Bed with an Organic Winterizer

  1. Give Your Lawn a Look. Check if you have cool or warm-season grass. Most areas with freezing winters grow cool-season grasses, such as bluegrass, ryegrass or fescue. Southern regions have warm-season grasses, such as Bermuda, Saint Augustine or Zoysia. Only apply winterizer to cool-season grasses. Warm-season grasses do not get fertilized at this time.
  2. Prime Time. Apply an organic lawn winterizer one week after your final mow of the season. Or if it’s easier to remember, apply around the week of Thanksgiving.
  3. Need to Feed. Spread organic fertilizer onto dry grass. Get step-by-step instructions on applying lawn winterizer here.

Applying a lawn winterizer is like wrapping your lawn up in a cozy blanket and presenting a warm cup of soup.  Your lawn stays warm and well-fed during winter, so it can grow back thicker, greener and faster next spring.

Still looking for more info? Check out our Winter Lawn Care Pinterest board?

See Spot Go. Tricks to Fix Brown Spots in the Lawn

At summer’s end, your lawn may begin to look less than stellar.

If your entire lawn is brown, no need to worry. Your grass has gone dormant, which happens during heat waves with little rain. Your lawn should bounce back as soon as the weather cools and rain returns.

The real problem is those random, pesky brown spots in the lawn. Luckily, there’s treatment.

  1. Pup Clean Up. Dog urine is one of the most common causes of brown spots. These small, round patches appear in areas where your dog does his business. Repair these spots with organic gypsum. To avoid future mishaps, train your dog to go only in a certain section of the lawn.
  2. Brown Bares. Some brown spots are actually soil peeking out through bare spots. Now is the time to reseed your lawn to fix bare spots.
  3. Learn from the Burn. Chemical fertilizers when spilled, overused or incorrectly applied cause lawn burns. Dilute by watering. From now on, stick to organic lawn fertilizers. Organic lawn food is safer for you and your pets and more cost-effective in the lawn-term.
  4. H2O Flow. Check your lawn after watering. If the surface stays wet while the soil remains dry, the watering is too frequent and superficial. To fix, water deeply
  5. That Thatch Patch. A thatch layer of more than 1/2” decaying grass prevents water from getting to living grass roots. Break up the thatch with a rake. Then, apply an organic lawn fertilizer.
  6. Know the Mower. A dull mower blade tears grass, causing brown spots. So, sharpen your mower blades every fall and spring. Also, if your mower blades are too low, you’re scalping the lawn. Avoid more brown spots by never cutting off more than 1/3 of the grass’s current height.

See spot disappear! Those unpleasant brown spots are on their way out! You’re one step closer to a greener, lusher lawn.

Live on Lawn! Tips for End of Summer Health

From barbecues and summer parties to gardening and endless games of fetch with your pup, your lawn has endured lots of activity this summer.

But, the summer isn’t over yet and your lawn needs some TLC. Go out with a bang by rejuvenating your lawn and prepping for the cooler season ahead.organic

safe paws espomaHelp Your Lawn Hang On All Winter Long

  1. Know How to Mow. When mowing, keep the mower blades high (3” or higher) to encourage healthy roots.
  2. Agree to Reseed. If all of your lawn looks dry and brown, overseed the whole lawn. If only certain areas look bare, reseed only those spots. First, perform a soil test and improve if needed. Then cut grass and remove clippings. Level and rake soil smooth. With a broadcast spreader, apply a seed that best suits your region and weather. Finally, water.
  3. Prepare with Care. Get your lawn ready for the cooler weather ahead by fortifying it with nutrients. An organic fall winterizer promotes growth, helps lawns recover from drought and increases winter hardiness. So apply an organic fall winterizer after you’ve seeded and mowed. Follow instructions here.
  4. Fido First. Always use an organic lawn fertilizer or winterizer. Harsher, chemical lawn products can be eaten, ingested or passed on to your dog. This exposure has been linked with a higher risk of canine cancer. Keep your dog alive longer by making sure their paws are safe thanks to organic lawn products.

And just like that, you’re done with lawn care for the summer! How are you going to celebrate? We foresee a barbecue with fresh herbs and spicy homegrown peppers.

Dogscape – So Every Dog Has Its Day

In the garden and in life, dogs are our best pals. Plus, they’re the only ones who ever seem to help us weed!

So, thank them by dogscaping and create a yard that’s dog-friendly to keep them happy, healthy and out of trouble.

Create a Landscape of Wagging Tails and Happy Dogs:

1. Safe Paws, Safe Pets. Dogs love your lush, green lawn. The chemicals used in many lawn fertilizers and products aren’t safe for pets or people for that matter. Keep dogs’ paws safe, happy and healthy by opting for a 100% organic lawn program.

Safe Paws, Safe Pets organic lawn program.

2. Munching on Mulch. Since dogs often eat mulch, choose one that’s non-toxic and pet-safe. Avoid cocoa mulch, and any mulch that has essential oils, resins or chemical insecticides. Apply it like this.

safe paws organic lawn

3. Mend the Fence. Whether you choose electric or wooden, fences prevent dogs from running away and keep them safe. Check for holes, gaps, breaks or broken latches. And, fence off pools, ponds and fire pits to prevent injuries.

Safe paws organic lawn

4. Let Them Play! Make a doggy-dream spot by picking an area in the shade and fill it with their favorite toys.

Safe Paws organic lawn

5. Keep them Cool. Add a pool! A kiddie pool is cheap, loads of fun and protects dogs from the summer heat. Want it a bit more hidden? Dig out an area to create a pseudo in-ground pool, so only the top 1-2” is exposed. You can fence in the area if you please.

Safe Paws, organic lawn

6. Dig It. If your dog is frequently digging up your favorite flowers, create a dog-friendly dig spot. Pick a spot and put a border around it using rocks or bricks. Then, fill with loose dirt or sand. Bury a few toys and bones here to introduce the area. Reward your pup with treats when they dig here.

Safe paws organic lawn

Do you hear that? It’s the distant, but unmistakable sound of your dog’s tail wagging! Congrats, your dog officially has the coolest, safest yard in the neighborhood.

Make Your Pet Red, White, Blue for Some Green

Have you heard? Your 4th of July can be packed with far more than hot dogs, fireworks and parades. You can enter to win 100 bucks, too!

You’re only a photo and a contest entry away.

At Espoma, you know we love keeping pets safe, healthy and happy. So this year, we’re celebrating the Fourth of July by hosting our first-ever Patriotic Pet Photo Contest.

To enter, snap a darling picture of your patriotic pet. With this keepsake, you really win either way.

Corgi

Milo, Max, Ivy, Gryffin, Berkley

Step by step instructions on how to enter Espoma’s Patriotic Pet Photo Contest and win $100:

  1. Like Espoma Organic on Facebook.
  2. Click on the Contest Tab.
  3. Post the cutest picture of your pet celebrating July 4th! Want to win? Make sure it’s patriotic and posted before July 7th.
  4. Rack up the likes! Encourage friends and family to like your photo by sharing the link. Be sure to vote for your favorite, too.
  5. Keep your eye on the prize. The photo with the most likes by 9 a.m. on July 7 wins.
Sammie

Sammie

Need inspiration? Check out these fun ways to celebrate the holiday with your pet.

Pets Get Patriotic for the Fourth

  • Add a red, white and blue bandana
  • Dress them up in festive outfit, bowtie or pop a patriotic hat or headband on them
  • Have your pet pose in front the American flag
  • Military family? Dress them in your fatigues.
  • Show them admiring your home-made red, white and blue flower container
  • March with them in your local parade

We can’t wait to see how you and your pet celebrate the Fourth of July this year! Best of luck in the contest. And, have a happy, safe and festive Fourth!

Show Off Your Patriotic Pet for a Chance to Win $100

As the biggest celebration of the summer, the Fourth of July is the perfect opportunity to celebrate our independence with friends, family fireworks and…Fido?!

Yes, people aren’t the only ones showcasing their patriotism on the Fourth of July — our pets cannot get enough of the Red, White and Blue.

This year, showcase your star-spangled furry friend in our first ever Patriotic Pet Photo Contest.

From June 26 through July 7, enter our Facebook contest for a chance to win a $100 VISA gift card.

Entering is simple:Patriotic Pet Photo Contest

  1. Please Like Espoma on Facebook.
  2. Click on the contest tab.
  3. Post a picture that best captures the spirit of the Fourth.
  4. Share the link with friends and family and encourage them to vote with a ‘like.’

The photo with the most ‘Likes’ wins at 9:00 A.M. EST on July 7.

One winning pet and their owner will receive a $100 VISA gift card. All entries must have something patriotic in the photo to be eligible to win. Don’t forget to include your pets name on the photo when you submit an entry.

Don’t have a pet to upload? Check our Facebook page regularly from June 26 through July 7 to vote for your favorite patriotic photo. Vote for as many entries as you like. All are welcome to participate so share your favorite posts with family, friends and coworkers.

The contest will end at 9:00 AM on Tuesday, July 7. The winner will be announced on Wednesday, July 8.

Submit Your Patriotic Photo Here! Good luck!

Keep Your Pet Safe During Hot Summer Days

Summertime means the fun doesn’t stop! From barbecues and homegrown veggies to beach trips and sunshine, we bet you’ve got a lot planned for the next few weeks.

Pets would like to follow us wherever we go. And we love traveling with our dogs, whether it’s to the mountains for a getaway or just to the garden center.

Are you (and your pet) taking a road-trip this summer? Keep the good times rollin’ by keeping pets safe in the hot weather.

During the summer months, never leave your pet alone in the car. Even with the windows cracked, your car’s temperature can rise 19°F in 7 minutes. Let’s avoid those types of hot dogs!summer pet safety

Here are hot weather traveling tips from the ASPCA:

  • Keep a bowl of water outside in the shade, and pack water and a bowl for dogs when traveling. Pets need lots of fresh, cool water in hot weather.
  • Exercise your pet during the coolest parts of the day (dawn and dusk), and never immediately following a meal.
  • Hot asphalt and tar can burn sensitive paw pads. Walk your pet on grass or dirt when possible.
  • Provide shade when your pet is outside on a hot day.
  • Get a veterinary checkup before traveling and make sure you have the necessary vaccination certificates for the area you will be visiting, as well as flea and tick treatments.

Another way to keep your dog cool is to avoid giving them a buzz cut! Get this — keeping your dog’s long hair groomed actually helps circulate air and better regulate body temperature.

Unsure if your dog is over-heating? Go inside, give ‘em water and check for heat stroke. Look for redness around the eyes or excessive panting. Cool them with a refreshing bath. If you’re still concerned, call the vet.

Another way you can keep pets happy and healthy this summer is to make sure the lawn is pet safe.

Did you know most lawn fertilizers contain harmful chemicals that can lead to canine cancer? Most people simply don’t know! Use only organic lawn fertilizers to keep your pets cancer-free this summer and for years to come.

See how we’re keeping dogs safe through Safe Paws — and how you can help.

Share this post to help keep more pets safe this summer!  

Love Your Pet with Safe Paws

SafePaws_Wht_Frame_FNLKeep Pet Paws Safe with Espoma’s Safe Paws Program

It’s hard to match our level of excitement for summer, but there’s somebody who always does!

Our pets!

Dogs love to sprint across green lawns — with tails wagging and eyes set on a prize! Cats are known to bask in the summer sun all day long, too. Our furry friends love lounging on the lawn just as much as we do — which is why pet proofing is so important.

Pet proofing everything from patios and porches to lawns and gardens keeps pets safe and your yard damage-free. Plus, June is National Pet Safety Month, so the timing couldn’t be better!

First thing’s first: the lawn! Pets run through the lawn, roll in it and often eat it. As you well know, any trouble pets can get into, they do.

But, many lawn products contain harmful chemicals, so they’re not safe to use around pets, children or anyone for that matter. Since pets lick their paws when cleaning, they ingest those dangerous herbicides, which can make them sick.

Cancer affects 1 out of every 3 dogs, according to the National Canine Cancer Foundation. Cancer is not as common in cats, but tends to be more aggressive.

Let’s reduce that statistic — together.

Keep pets safe this season by using only organic lawn and garden products like those made by Espoma. We believe the safest, most effective way to reduce canine cancer and help pets live long, healthy lives is to avoid harmful chemicals altogether.

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Here are 7 tips for pet proofing your yard that can be done today:

  1. Out of Paws Reach. Store hazardous products such as insecticides, paint, car parts and gasoline on upper shelves.
  2. A close cut. Since fleas and ticks lurk in tall grasses, keep your lawns mowed at 3 – 3.5”.
  3. Begin with the Bin. Food and garden waste make excellent additions to garden soil. But you should compost in closed containers or keep pets out of the compost pile as rotting waste may make your pet sick if eaten.
  4. Go Bare. Using an organic lawn food, as well as organic mulch will eliminate the hazards that chemical fertilizers, pesticides and synthetic mulches present.
  5. Use your Eyes. Look around the patio and yard. Standing water, exposed wires or objects in the ground may cause a hazard. Change or remove them immediately.
  6. Paw-Approved Plants. We’ve found that pets love munching on new things in the yard, especially plants and grasses. Before buying new plants, check if they’re nontoxic.
  7. The Great Escape. Ensure there are no gaps in the fence that your pet could escape through.

Get the full scoop on how our Safe Paws initiative is keeping pets safe.

Now go play! Share a picture of you and your pet enjoying the summer weather on our Facebook page!