Tips for Summer Travel

July 30, 2012

Summer time is arriving swiftly which means children are out of school, sun burnt skin and the community pool bustling with people. So, how do you get away from the hustle and bustle of summer? Why not plan a vacation? Here are five tips to make your summer vacation planning a bit more relaxing:

  1. Pick out a destination and plan in advance. Some great vacations to consider when on a budget is a cruise (almost always all inclusive), Las Vegas (great hotel prices), or national parks.
  2. 2.      Set a budget and stick to it.
  3. Go on different websites to find the best deals. For example expedia, kayak, priceline, and many more sights have more than flight prices; they also have cruises and vacations.
  4. Pack as light as possible. You know that you are going to end up bringing things back home with you so make sure you leave space for that.
  5. Stop stressing, sit back, and enjoy the sunshine (or ice depending on which region you are going to).

The chaos of summer can easily be tamed by a relaxing summer trip. This will get you away from assigning chores to your children, babysitters, pool parties, and work, just sit back and enjoy.

Animal Shelter or Rescue fundraiser events can make or break your shelter’s ability to care for dogs or cats in your community; you can get a tremendous outcome, or hear the crickets in the audience. To make sure your next animal shelter fundraiser is a success, follow these five important rules:

  1. Clearly know the goal of the event. Even the smallest nonprofit shelter event needs to have a clear goal to reference back to after the event.
  2. Make sure your chosen venue is an appropriate backdrop for your event. The venue is the first thing people see as they roll into your event, and, of course, first impressions are everything, so make it a nice, appropriate venue.
  3. Know who your target attendees are. Knowing who your attendees are will help you with finding places to advertise the fundraising event, making the event enjoyable for them, and the invitation status.
  4. Be sensible and realistic about the date and time of the special event. This goes along with knowing your attendees, if you know your attendees then you know what times and dates will most likely suit them.
  5. Have an infallible way for attendees to register and contact you. This should include an online registration service, a contact e-mail, a contact phone number, or a physical location to purchase tickets.

Using these five important rules will make your next animal shelter fundraising event more planned, pleasant, and easily accessible for the attendees.

Everyone loves to get outside and enjoy the fresh air with there pet, but with this extreme summer heat sometimes it is not healthy to go outdoors. But, don’t be discouraged, there are plenty of indoor activities you and your dog can do together inside.  These include:

  • Hide and seek
  • Grooming
  • Teaching/learning new commands and tricks
  • Toys
  • Playdates
  • Indoor dog park
  • Treadmill
  • Visit a friend or loved one
  • Go shopping

These are just a few of the fun activities that you can enjoy with your dog, remember, as long as your pup gets to spend time with you, his/her best friend, he/she is going to be happy.

With the extreme heat this summer reaching the triple digits many days in a row, many animals are at risk including horses. Many horses have been experiencing colic, some are from founder and some are from symptoms of heat stress, which can be life-threatening. Follow these tips to keep your horse cool this summer:

  • Be sure that your horse has access to fresh, clean water at all times.
  • Provide a shaded area for your horse.
  • Feed your horse salt and/or electrolytes to help replace what is lost when they sweat and to encourage more water consumption.
  • Feed your horses more wet food.
  • Increase evaporative cooling.
  • Encourage increased water consumption.
  • Decrease heat-producing feeds.
  • Increase depth of soft bedding.

Now that you know all the ways to keep your big furry friends cool, you need to stop “horsing” around and do it! If your horse shows signs that are not like themselves, it would be best to seek medical attention from a veterinarian that specializes in equine care.

Just like humans, dogs can get sunburn too (even though they have fur), and get skin damage and skin cancer from the sun as well. Dogs with white or light colored coats, dogs with short fur or no fur, and dogs that are outside during the hottest and brightest part of the day are at risk for sun burn and skin damage. To prevent your dog from being sunburnt you can follow these four tips:

  1. Keep your dog inside in a cool room if possible, but if left outside, be sure your furry friend is in the shade during the hot day time.
  2. Use sunscreen on your dog’s nose, ends of the ears, around the mouth, eyelids, belly, groin, and inside the legs. BE SURE TO USE A PET SUNSCREEN.
  3. Consider purchasing a UV protectant suit for your pup.
  4. If you have your dog groomed in the summer, consider leaving his coat a bit longer to cover more of its skin.

Now that your furry friend is ready for the sun, don’t forget yourself, always remember to use sunscreen and reapply every 2 hours.

Dog Bites

July 24, 2012

We all love our pets, but we need to keep in mind that they are naturally wild animals that must be treated with respect and caution. Would you like it if someone were pulling, scaring, or caught you off-guard? You would probably react. The Insurance Information Institute revealed that nearly $500 million dollars were spent in dog bite claims in 2011. Slightly more than 4.5 million people are victims of a dog bite each year. Although we relate dog bites with mail carriers, children are 900 times more likely to be subject to attacks than a mail carrier. Fifty percent of children under the age of 10 will experience a dog bite from a family or neighborhood pet. The average cost of medical expenses per claim is just about $29,000.  Make sure your are properly protected from outrageous lawsuits similar to these by purchasing dog liability insurance or check with your current insurance agent to see if personal liability is covered.

The third week in May was National Dog Bite Prevention week, so we collected tips from the ASPCA to prevent dog bites in children. First, teach your child to be calm around the animal. They should not run to the dog, stare in its eyes, taunt, approach the dog when he is eating, or move toward a chained dog. Finally, always ask the owner for permission to pet the dog and let the dog sniff your closed hand before petting

Summer is a fun time for you and your furry companions. You can swim, go on walks, have picnics, play fetch, go to the park, and so much more together, but are you aware that there are hazards for your dog in the summer? Here are a few tips to keep your pup safe and enjoy everything the summer has to offer:

  • Some dogs may be heat sensitive. Larger dogs, dogs with flat faces, older dogs, and overweight dogs tend to be more sensitive than other types of dogs. Always read your dog when they’re in the heat and their actions should tell you if they are okay or if they need some air conditioning.
  • For dogs with a thick coat, consider cutting their hair a couple of inches, but not too close to the skin or they can be susceptible to sunburn.
  • Avoid exercising your dog in the heat or a potential heat stroke could occur.
  • This may seem like common sense but DON’T LEAVE YOUR DOGS IN PARKED CARS!
  • If you leave your dog outside during the day, make sure that they have a nice shady spot to get away from the sun.
  • If your pup is overheated, don’t go straight for the ice water, but slowly cool down his temperature with cool water or wet towels and a fan facing them.
  • Yes, dogs get sunburn too so keep your pups from contracting sunburn and melanoma by rubbing sunscreen on their bellies and noses.

Tips to Cut Energy Cost

July 20, 2012

A new trend in America is going green, and even if you’re not going green it’s always nice to save money, right? A way you can save some money is by cutting your energy costs at home or at your Non-Profit Organization. Here are a few tips to help you out:

  1. Consider adding solar panels. This may be a pricier choice at first but it will cost less in the long run.
  2. Check to see if the air from outside is seeping inside your house, by sealing those crevices you can save.
  3. Unplug all electronics when not in use, even though it is not being used, your energy bill is going up.
  4. Buy appliances with the “Energy Star” sticker.
  5. When leaving your house for work or leaving your office, turn down the thermostat a few notches.

By following these five tips, you will have a less expensive energy bill so that you can spend money on more important things, like a nice big screen television, a day at the spa, or even a vacation!

Do you realize how much money your Animal Welfare Organization is losing from disengaged volunteers? It’s a  surprisingly $300 billion annually. There are tactics to keep volunteers motivated and to keep them loving there job, but the key lies in a strong, positive, and adaptive animal welfare organization culture.Organization culture does not only save you money in the long run, but it helps to provide a base for employee and volunteer values and how they are expected to act in a business setting, all you need is workforce and TEAM dynamics.

So, you want to start this “organization change”, now where do you start? Well, like everything, you need to  build off of what you already have. By re-examining the animal welfare organization’s core values and mission and vision statements and editing them (if needed), you can organize a common goal for your animal welfare organization  team. Like anywhere in life, you need to have the management team lead by example.

Studies by the Saratoga Institute show that nearly one in three newly hired employees leaves (voluntarily or involuntarily) before the end of her/his first year which costs companies an estimated 50-150 percent of the positions annual salaries. To avoid this kind of loss your management team needs to focus on the interview process. Employers must look for a balance between the skills you need to be fulfilled for the position and how that person will co-exist with the team. Another thing to consider for the application process is to reevaluate job ads. Do they emulate your company values? During the interview try to uncover behavior, and create interview questions that bring out values and characteristics that could be helpful or if they could hurt your organization and the team.  Consider asking a volunteer to help with the interview, this will ease the stress of the candidate and will help to get the team involved in finding a new member.

Are your volunteers proud to  be part of your Animal Welfare Organization? A happy volunteer will not only help eluminate the office morale, but it will help with retention. If your volunteers are doing a great job and you want to get the team together, consider instituting weekly or monthly lunches, and talk to your team about other team building activities they could do together. If your volunteers feels important to your organization, it wil show in there work ethic. To show your volunteer that you appreciate there hard work, consider putting them in your newsletter. By adding all of these team building tactics to your organization, you can make a happier work environment and save money for your organization.

                Your heart is racing, everyone is looking at you, and you try to read your paper but get stuck on the words. Sounds like a case of glossopgobia (fear of public speaking) which many people have at least one time in their life. Here are a few tips to being a great public speaker:

  1. Body language. If you feel confident you will come off as confident, but even if you feel nervous you need to come off as confident so standing, walking around or moving with appropriate hand gestures is recommended.
  2. Speak to your audience (NO NOTES!), listen to their questions, and respond to their reactions in a likeable way.
  3. Add humor to your speech, after all if you hear a good joke you never forget it but if you hear a dud it’s in one ear and out the other.
  4. If using audio-visual aid with your speech, be sure that it is set up ahead of time instead of fooling around with it and distracting your audience during your speech.
  5. Choose an appropriate topic for your speech. If you’re giving a speech to a bunch of nurses do not do a speech on engineering, instead maybe you could do a speech on how to properly take blood pressure.

Speaking in front of many people, especially your peers can be extremely nerve racking, but with these tips you should be on your way to a confident, informative speech.