5 Pet Poisons Hiding in your Purse, Work Bag, or Backpack

According to the folks at PET POISON HELPLINE, they talk frequently to terrified pet owners whose dog or cat found an enticing “treat” in a purse or backpack and gobble it up.

Since during the winter months pets tend to be indoors more, a handbag or similar item lying open with contents exposed, can prove an irresistible temptation to a confined and perhaps slightly bored pet.

Top 5 Most Common Purse Items that Poison Pets

'Lily' Beagle/Shar Pei

'Lily' Beagle/Shar Pei

1. Human medications. About half the yearly calls to the Pet Poison Helpline are because     someone’s pet ingested a medication found in a handbag, book bag, duffel bag, etc.

Human pills come in bottles and make the sound of a rattling pill bottle is very similar to the noise some dog toys make.

Both over the counter and prescription drugs can be a problem.

Very common OTC painkillers like Advil, Motrin, and Tylenol, and human doses of prescription drugs for depression like Prozac and Effexor can e toxic to pets.

 Just one (1) Tylenol can be fatal to cats, and larger amounts can cause liver damage in a dog.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, (NSAIDS) like Advil, Motrin and Aleve can cause GI ulcers and kidney failure and are especially dangerous for cats.
Anti depressants are the number one cause of calls to the Pet Poison Helpline. Signs a pet has ingested one of these drugs include, but are not limited to sedation, loss of coordination, agitation, trembling and seizures.

2. Asthma inhalers, if your dog bites into an inhaler, it has the potential to result in acute, life-threatening poisoning. Inhalers contain highly concentrated doses of drugs like Albuteral ( a Beta-Agonist ) and Fluticasone ( a Steroid )

If a dog punctures an inhaler by biting or gnawing it, they can be exposed to a massive single dose of a powerful drug which can bring on vomiting, agitation, heart arrhythmia and ultimately death.

3. Artificially sweetened gum and mints. Many “sugarless” gums and mints contain xylitol- a sugar substitute highly toxic to dogs. Even a small amount can result in a dangerous blood sugar crash in dogs and larger amounts can lead to liver failure.

Symptoms of xylitol  poisoning include vomiting, weakness, collapse, shaking and seizures.

In addition to gum and mints and other sugarless candy, xylitol is commonly found in chewable vitamins, dental hygiene products, nicotine gum and baked goods, and certain prescription drugs.

'Lucy' Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier

'Lucy' Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier

4. Cigarettes, smokeless tobacco and other products containing nicotine. Did you know a small dog can die from ingesting just 3 cigarettes, depending on the brand? Chewing tobacco is also toxic to dogs and cats and so are stop smoking products like nicotine gum.

Signs of nicotine poisoning come on quickly and include elevated heart and respiratory rates, neurological symptoms, loss of bladder or bowel control, tremors, seizures, paralysis and death.

5. Hand Sanitizers. Small bottles of hand sanitizer have become commonplace in purses, briefcases and backpacks. These products, which are used to kill germs contain lots of alcohol. Alcohol ( Ethanol ), is the germ killing agent in these gels and liquids.

If your dog were to ingest a small bottle of hand sanitizer, it would be equal to a shot of hard liquor. This could cause a severe drop in your pets blood sugar, loss of coordination, loss of body temperature, nervous system depression, coma and death.

An Ounce of Prevention...

If your family is like most, chances are you can find an open handbag or other carryall bag within reach of your pet right now.

If so, you might want to designate a common surface in your home - close to the door- as the “bag drop off area”. It should be high enough that its contents don’t draw your pets attention.

If you have a curious cat, then the requirement should be that all bags are zippered or snapped closed before leaving them in the “ bag drop off area”

Another option would be to create a “bag hanging area” by installing pegs, coat hooks or similar heavy duty hangers close to the front door and assigning one to each member of the family.

Posted on March 29, 2013 .

The StylaPet Transformation!

This June 2013 StylaPet Day Spa will officially be 3 years old! So I decided it would be fun to take a look at where we started and just how far StylaPet has come! The first 3 photos are from our first 1.5 years in business. We worked hard to make it a warm and welcoming environment on a budget. But as you will see below, as the business began to boom so did our salon!


Here was the salon after our new floor was installed! What a wonderful transformation! The floor really brightens up the salon and is much better for maintaining a clean environment for your pets. We also began expanding our lobby to accommodate more great products for our clients!


Present Day: StylaPet Day Spa 2013!


None of these wonderful transformations would have been possible without our absolutely amazing, loyal clients! So Thank You for supporting StylaPet! We hope you have enjoyed this journey as much as we have! StylaPet will continue to bring you the most up-to-date products and services available so keep an eye out for even more improvements to your StylaPet experience!

Posted on March 29, 2013 .

My Dog has Allergies -- What Now?

Healthy cats and dogs are not itchy, smelly, flaky or constantly trying to scratch or bite at their fur. If your pet is displaying any of these tell-tale signals, it’s a major sign that something is out of balance in their system.

When all systems in your pet’s body are humming along in balance, their skin, eyes, ears, and digestive system are protected by their immune symbiotic relationship.

In a healthy animal (dog, cat, or human) normal inhabitants of the skin coexist in harmony, each doing their jobs and living their lives in a symbiotic relationship.

If an animal’s immune system is under more stress than it can manage, this symbiotic relationship can fall out of balance and skin problems -- hot spots, rashes, yeast overgrowth and bacterial infections -- can result.

Conventional medical intervention includes antihistamines, antibiotics, and steroids. All of these medications modify and suppress the immune system, and although sometimes required, your goal should be to help your pet’s immune system work properly, not suppress it.

With species-appropriate nutrition, appropriate bathing and proper exercise, many animals regain their health and thrive without drugs.

First and foremost your pet needs to be on a healthy, grain free diet. If the first 5 ingredients listed on your pets food are NOT real , chicken meal, chicken by-products, dried beet pulp, corn, wheat gluten etc. these are fillers and not a healthy choice for your pet.  You should know that most commercial foods sold in pet stores contain high amounts of sugar and fillers, also known as Carbohydrates. These are things an animal DOES NOT NEED IN ITS DIET!!! Also the animal food industry is allowed by law to change up its recipe and add or remove ingredients without telling you the consumer for 6 months, then they just change the ingredient label without “really” telling you anything. They also have a habit of marketing it as new and improved.

Healthy add ins for your pets diet include, baby carrots (washed first), green beans, our dogs prefer them frozen, it’s like getting s healthy treat. Yogurt is very good for your pets, cats and dogs alike. Just remember no chocolate or citrus. Also do not buy a diet yogurt as the chemicals in it are not healthy. Cottage cheese is another good add in to your pets diet. Stay away from over processed treats as they contain large amounts of sugars and fillers.

“Allergic” Skin Problems

Skin infections and hotspots are usually caused by the Staphylococcus bacteria that normally inhabit the skin. While generally harmless, if your pet’s skin is irritated and itchy, it’s a sign that something has gone wrong -- such as there may not be enough of the immunologic IgA protecting the skin.

Though it may sound surprising, one common underlying cause of an IgA deficiency on the skin is over-utilization of IgA in the gut. This happens when things are not well balanced in your pet’s gastrointestinal tract, so the IgA is needed more there, and there’s not enough left over to protect the skin.

Antibiotics and other medications that decrease gastrointestinal permeability can all contribute to an imbalance in your pet’s gut, so if your animal has taken any such drugs I recommend you provide a source of beneficial bacteria, to “re-seed” the intestinal tract and bolster gastrointestinal defenses.

Is Yeast Overgrowth Harming Your Pet?

Yeast also naturally inhabit your pet’s skin, but when the proper balance is distributed they can multiply rapidly and cause skin and ear problems. You’ll know your dog or cat has yeast if he starts smelling like a corn chip (some think cheese popcorn). Yeast causes intense itching and can grow in localized areas -- causing a creamy white accumulation between toes -- in the ears, or can affect the whole body.

An overgrowth of yeast is a signal that your pet’s immune system is not functioning well, as well as an indication your pet needs a good probiotic.

Often, there is a dietary connection as well, so if you suspect yeast overgrowth it’s a good time to try and eliminate extra carbohydrates (corn, wheat, rice, soy) from your pet’s diet. You see, yeast need sugar (carbs) as an energy source and reducing your pet’s intake of unnecessary carbohydrates reduces the yeast’s “fuel”.

Symptoms of Skin Allergies in Your Pet

Skin allergies cause a variety of symptoms in animals, such as:

  • Fur may feel “sticky”
  • Lots of flakes on the skin despite the fact that your pet feels greasy
  • Red spots with little white heads, which often have black areas around them
  • Red, inflamed skin covering large areas of the body
  • Your pet may act like his or her skin is crawling
  • Your dog might also lick her legs or chew her pads, and there may be inflamed spots between toes, in armpits and inner legs. “Hot Spots,” or localized moist skin infections, can seem to appear in an instant and can spread at an alarming rate. These oozing sores are extremely painful and can easily become infected.

If your pet’s immune system is highly reactive, environmental substances (ragweed, grass, pollen, mold) animals pick up just by walking outside can even provide enough irritating substances to cause a reaction.

Remember, animals don’t shower daily to remove these allergens and they don’t wear protective clothing and shoes to keep allergens at bay. The resulting allergic reaction is actually one reason why elderly animals and those in poor health often exude an unpleasant fragrance.

Common Sense 101: Keep Skin Clean

If you have a rash, scab, infection, or injury to your skin, you don’t have much question about what to do -- you keep it clean! The same is true for dogs and cats. Your animals will feel better, smell better, and heal faster if their skin is kept clean. However, in the case of cats, they may not be happier -- bathing is not usually on their list of favorite activities!

Tips on Choosing Shampoos

From the wide variety of commercial pet shampoos available, choose as you do for yourself, trying to avoid toxic ingredients. Try to get a product that does not contain alcohol, perfumes, sulfates or petroleum products. At StylaPet Day Spa all of our product are made with essential oils only. Leaving your pet smelling cleaner longer. Our products are safe for both cats and dogs.

Also avoid shampoos that include oatmeal. Oatmeal has a great reputation as a soothing ingredient, but in animals that have a problem with grain (which is 80% plus of allergic dogs!) they are likely to have problems with oatmeal shampoos. Grain-based shampoos may also provide a carbohydrate food source for unwanted yeast and bacteria. The only pets that truly benefit from oatmeal shampoos are those that have poison oak or poison ivy reactions.

“Healthy” shampoos that include essential oils should be used with caution on cats, but they are usually fine for dogs. There are a variety of animal herbal shampoos on the market that are non-drying and safe to use on a very regular basis.
And remember, DO NOT use human shampoos on pets… our pH is different.

Source: “How Often Should You Bathe Your Pet?” by Dr. Becker posted on July 14, 2009

Posted on March 26, 2013 .

Why Should I feed a Raw Diet?

More and more professionals in the world of dogs and cats (breeders, vets, sports competitors) are advocating a second look at what we feed our animals. Why? Because there is a growing belief that cats and dogs need a raw, natural diet in order to be healthy and that commercial pet foods cannot supply the nutrients necessary for good health and long lives.

Isabella Approved!

Isabella Approved!

What Should Carnivores Eat?

Proper nutrition is vital to good health. In nature, it is live foods that truly nourish both people and animals. If your animals are to thrive, they need the live enzymes, phytochemicals, antioxidants and unadulterated amino acids, vitamins and minerals that only Raw Food can provide. While commercial pet foods are convenient, most contain sub-standard or condemned meats. This is allowed by our FDA for pet foods.
Cats and dogs are carnivores, yet most dry pet foods are at least 50% (or more) grains, which are needed to hold food together as a binder. The Merck Veterinary Manual tells us, that dogs and cats have “No dietary requirement for carbohydrate.” If grains were the primary nutrient source you would see dogs and cats eating stalks of corn and heads of wheat.
Raw Diets simulate the menu that nature intended carnivores to eat, which include some bone, some organ meats and some vegetation contained in the digestive tract. That’s natures perfect meal-the meal raw diets replicate.

Are Raw Diets Safe?

Dogs and cats are NOT humans. They have a very different digestive tract and process. We can get sick from eating raw meat, while our pet thrives on it. Dogs and cats have a much shorter digestive system than we do, which means that foods are processed quickly- before harmful bacteria have a chance to multiply and cause problems.
A Raw Food Diet consists of good quality USDA inspected and approved meats and bones, the ingredients used in all the Raw Food Diets that we carry,
Stella & Chewy’s  and Bravo!

Foods to Avoid

Check out the StylaPet Freezer!

Check out the StylaPet Freezer!

1. Onions- can cause Hemolytic Anemia even when used  in small amounts whether cooked, raw or dehydrated in cats and dogs.
2. Chocolate - The theobromine in chocolate is toxic to dogs.
3. Yeast -  in any form. Dogs do not tolerate yeast very well and it can lead to, or exacerbate, certain health problems.
4. White Potatoes -  feed sparingly. Never feed raw if the skins are sprouted or have green skins.
5. Grains - dogs and cats are carnivores not grain eaters. They derive their energy from fats and protein. In addition, grains break down into sugars in the body and sugars feed unhealthy conditions like cancer, obesity, diabetes, and some skin problems.
6. Dairy Products - Milk and its derivatives are not natural foods for an adult animal. They are not digested well at all. Full fat yogurts and cottage cheese are the exceptions.

Noticeable benefits of a Raw Diet

1. One effect of a raw diet will become quickly apparent -- a large reduction in stool as well as a significant reduction in stool odor. Stools from dogs and cats on raw diets tend to be smaller and harder due to the fact that the animal is actually utilizing most of what it is eating.
2. A healthier and more compact stool will reduce the risk of anal gland impaction or infection, and allow the pet to release their anal glands naturally as intended.
3.Water consumption on a raw diet normally decreases because of the high moisture content in the raw foods, so do not become alarmed if your animal begins drinking less.
4. Your animal will be eating the diet that nature intended it to eat, not a man-made kibble, which can lead to obesity and other problems.
5. Raw food companies, ( Stella & Chewy’s and Bravo! and Nature’s Variety ) are highly conscious of the quality of the ingredients in your pets food. All ingredients are antibiotic and hormone free as well as being produced locally so there is no risk of any products coming from CHINA. All produce is organically grown and harvested from local organic farmers.

For More Information Visit: http://www.bravorawdiet.com/rawdiets.html

Posted on March 23, 2013 .

How do I get my pet used to grooming?

It is the moment you have been waiting for! You just brought home your new little puppy and it is all snuggles, playing, and little wet puppy kisses! But a couple weeks later your cute little pup is starting to look more like a Scruffy than a Fluffy, what do you do now? Well it is off to see the groomer! For many dogs, grooming is something that they will have to go through every 4-8 weeks for the rest of their life so we want it to be an enjoyable experience for them each and every time. Dogs are not born understanding that they must be groomed or how to behave while being groomed, for their own safety and for the groomer's safety. This means that it is important for them to be exposed to grooming and what it entails starting at a young age. Here is a list of different techniques that can be used at home to teach your new addition that grooming can not only be tolerable, but an enjoyable experience!

'Bear' Leonberger puppy

'Bear' Leonberger puppy

1. Play daily with your dogs feet.    

Touch the pads, between their toes, tug lightly on nails. This gets them used to having nail trims and pads shaved.

2. Use a metal comb to groom your dog daily.

We do not suggest a brush as it will only surface brush your dog and will not get down to the skin where mats/knots form.

3. Start combing your dog from the bottom first.

Start at the point where the tail meets back and work your way forward towards the head so that you are not pulling knots all the way through the coat and causing the dog pain. Start at the toes and work your way up the leg. Be sure to get the belly and armpit area as well. Remove the collar to comb out neck and chest area and behind the ears. Pay close attention to the ears, tails, feet, and armpits. These are common areas for matting.

4. Working with the dogs face.

It is very important that your dog become accustom  to having it’s face held in order to groom safely around the eyes and mouth. We suggest that you use your index finger and thumb on the chin/beard area of face, and using a healthy treat get your dog to focus and sit still. Start with 10 seconds and work up from that everyday. If done on a regular basis we should be able to have your dog be still for face trimming.

'Bella' Maltese/Yorkie Puppy

'Bella' Maltese/Yorkie Puppy

5. Teaching your dog to stand still on a hard surface such as a washing machine or dryer (if size permits).

This is sometimes the hardest thing to teach your dog and takes a lot of patience by you the owner. Start out slowly and work up to 5- 10 minutes. Then when they come in to be groomed they are comfortable with standing in one spot.

6. Please DO NOT FEED your dog prior to grooming.

Many dogs have stress diarrhea and then must be re-bathed which tends to stress them out more. Missing their breakfast or lunch by a few hours will not harm them or throw them off their schedule. It also gives the dog something to look forward to once they get home.

'Hank' Catahoula Leopard Dog puppy

'Hank' Catahoula Leopard Dog puppy

7. It is also very important for you to use flea and tick prevention.

If your dog has fleas please inform us when making your appointment. As we must isolate your pet from the other animals in the shop to prevent an epidemic within the salon. Also please be aware that a flea bath will kill existing fleas but it will NOT prevent the fleas from coming back.

We recommend Frontline, a topical preventative for both cats and dogs, but there are other products that work just as well. We do offer to apply it at StylaPet for an added fee. Otherwise, please purchase it from your vet because if you buy it elsewhere then

it will not be guaranteed (there are many counterfeit products on the market) It must be applied monthly to your pet to keep them safe from fleas and ticks.

Your groomer is your dogs advocate for life, and we ask that you inform us of any changes in your dog's health or behavior. Groomers are often the first to find changes in your dog's behavior or health. We are also usually the first to find the beginnings of ear infections, growths, sores or other issues. We have our hands on your pet more often than a vet. And we will always inform you of any changes we find.

Here at StylaPet Day Spa, we strive to make your pets grooming experience a good one. With your help we can achieve that goal. We want your pet to leave not only clean and looking nice, but to have had a stress-free spa day!

Posted on March 20, 2013 .

Heather is Now Sole Owner of StylaPet Day Spa!


Now, Heather has become the sole owner of StylaPet
Day Spa! What does that mean for you, our customer? It means that you should watch for some exciting changes including remodeling and other investments to make StylaPet even more welcoming for all of our customers! Let us know what you would like to see.
Email Heather

Posted on March 9, 2013 .

New Stylist Joins the StylaPet Team!


Stephanie Cornejo is a Certified Pet Groomer who has worked in many high profile shops in Illinois. Stephanie specializes in working with rescue animals or any animal who is fearful of the grooming process. She has a special place in her heart for animals who need a little extra time and TLC. Stephanie shares her home with her two rescues, Roma, a beautiful Basenji Mix and an orange tabby, Luca. Stop by StylaPet today to meet Stephanie and see for yourself the special touch she brings to the StylaPet experience!

Posted on January 1, 2013 .

The StylaPet Boutique is Now Open!


The StylaPet Boutique offers all the best products for your pet. Stop by today to check out our wonderful selection of foods and treats from companies that are dedicated to producing high quality food to keep your pet feeling their best, inside and out. We also have a great selection of different toys so that you can find the perfect toy to fit your pet. Select from stuffed toys, UNstuffed toys (a safer option for the dog who likes to de-stuff), tug toys, chew toys, and even interactive toys that can be filled with treats to keep your pet busy while you're away. StylaPet will be continuing to bring more great products right to you in the coming weeks. We will be getting collars, leashes, bakery treats, and a wonderful selection of grooming tools to keep your pet looking good, even between grooming appointments! At StylaPet we understand that your pet is a member of the family and should be treated as such, that is why all our products are tested and approved by our own fur
kids (It is a tough job but someone has to do it)!

See you soon!
Your StylaPet Family

Posted on January 1, 2013 .

What's Going on at StylaPet?

Old flooring removed and being replaced.

Old flooring removed and being replaced.

New flooring installed!!

Wow! You may have seen quite a few changes around StylaPet Day Spa lately. There are a lot of improvements that I have wanted to do for a while and now I can. When I first bought out the business, I did some rearranging to make the New Lenox pet grooming salon feel more open and got rid of any clutter. I've added digital signage so that I can share some of the neat things going on with those waiting at the stoplight or walking by. On November 11-12, I had new flooring put in across the whole salon. I'll be replacing the furniture too! I hope that you've also met Stephanie! She's a talented, certified pet groomer with a big heart. There is more to come, but I'm excited to share the news of what we've done so far. Make sure to follow my Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/StylaPet to see some of our latest guests with their beautiful styling. Please click the "Like" button for me. See you soon and please let us know if you like what we've been doing!


Posted on November 13, 2012 .