Snellville Dog Walker Follows Gwinnett County Leash Laws

Depositphotos_31513781_s-2015-1-Dog-Walker-Pet-sitterAware of Surroundings

Dog walkers have to constantly be aware of their surroundings. While walking dogs, walkers need to be mindful of sharp objects their dog may step on, random plants or garbage the dog may eat, and other dogs. Yes, that’s right, other dogs. Why would a dog walker need to use precautions against other pups?

Imagine walking your dog, and out of nowhere, a barking dog runs over to you. Is the dog-friendly? Does he just want to say, “Hi”? Is the off-leash dog lost or close-by neighbors? Your first instinct is to get between the loose dog and your dog. Maybe you try to walk or run away from the stray dog. You may even freeze up until the dog’s owner calls him or her back to their house.

Is There A Leash Law In Gwinnett County?

Once the other dog is gone, you wonder, “Isn’t there a law that dogs in Gwinnett County need to be leashed? Why wasn’t that dog in a fully-fenced in yard? Your Snellville dog walker is going to answer your dog-law questions for you!

According to Gwinnett County Animal Control, a dog is considered not under control when he is not under restraint (leash) whether or not he is wearing a tag or collar. Dogs that are off-leash in an invisible fenced area are ok, as they are on their own property. Dogs that are off-leash on their own property must be under voice-control of their owner (being able to come when called and follow commands).

If a dog is in the home or yard, he must not be able to dig out, and or jump over the fence. He must not be able to escape the home at any time. The property has to be secure and safe for the dog to stay inside the home or fenced area. If a dog is tethered outside, the owner has to be present and cannot leave the dog outside unsupervised on the tether. The fine for having a loose dog is up to $1,000 depending on the number of citations that dog owner has had and/or the severity of the dog’s behavior while off-leash.

What can a dog walker in Snellville do to prevent another dog from charging up to her and her dog?

A dog walker always needs to be aware of his surroundings. Off-leash dogs are always a possibility, and being aware of the fact that another dog can dart out or run over from across the street is the first step in preventing an incident from occurring. Some dog walkers even carry spray or a large stick to ward off unwanted dogs.

Please be sure to follow leash laws in Gwinnett County to avoid unnecessary do attacks, injuries, and having to have your dog quarantined!

Questions? Leave them in the comments below or call 770-695-3096!

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Don’t Let Your Dog Become A Statistic Be Prepared Before Your Dog Is Lost

Our-Service-Area-1-768x512The Statistics Of Lost Pets

Did you know that a family pet is lost every 2 seconds, only 1 in 10pets are found, and 10 million plus pets are lost each year?

These statistics are sobering. It’s easy to understand why our shelters continue to be full of so many missing pets. Each day in my Facebook feed I see all the posts of lost dogs. I find this very troubling. Recently, on Nextdoor a pet was lost, and a few days later it was reported found. However, it was not a happy ending. It’s was comforting to know how loving we all are. So many people commented how sorry they were for their loss. When we lose a pet, it’s just as traumatic as losing a relative or friend, and sometimes even more so.

Loyalty dog

How It Happens

There are a variety of ways a dog becomes lost or missing.

  • Theft of an unattended dog in your yard,  in your car, or outside of a store.
  • Loud and sudden noises can frighten dogs to run, hide, jump or dig out of a fence.
  • Getting separated from their owner or caretaker during their walk.
  • A broken or too-low a fence, an open or unattended door or unlocked gate.
  • Traveling or vacationing in an unknown area and they wander off. Dogs can cover miles in a short amount of time.
  • Intentionally displaced or released.

Lost Dog Prevention

Sad and homeless dog

How can you keep your dog safe and protected if they get lost?

  • Crate the dog or place them in a secure room, so they won’t run out the door if you are having a party or family gatherings or during fireworks.
  • Use a properly fitted collar with current identification.
  • Microchip and keep the pets information current and updated. An idea would be to list your pet sitter or dog walker as another contact person to notify.
  • If you have a dog, who loves to dig or a great jumper of fences you might want to use a tracking device.
  • Employ a dog trainer or dog behaviorist for recall response.
  • Use DNA Genotyping: a unique “paw print” of your pet’s identity.

2 Paws Up Inc Pet SittingDog Walking, and Dog Training would be happy to talk more with you about this topic. We would also like to hear your story about your lost dog, and how you were reunited with your dog.

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My Dog and Chocolate: Some Preventative Ideas

Like us, some dogs seem to be irresistibly drawn to chocolate. If Fido finds a stray candy bar or noses his way into the chocolate chips in the pantry, he can’t seem to help consuming as much of that chocolaty goodness as possible. However, unlike our chocolate binges, which might result in a guilt trip or a renewed dieting plan, a dog’s chocolate binges can end up in the pet ER.

Dog Proofing and Protection

We can do a lot to keep our pets from consuming chocolate. Dog-proof your kitchen by storing chocolate chips and other ingredients in sealed containers and keeping them on high shelves. Practice extra-awareness when you have chocolate treats out on the counters and tables. Something as simple as placing the brownies at the center of the table instead of on the edge can make a difference. Store the chocolate cake or other chocolate goods in the refrigerator instead of on the counter where they could be more accessible. Remind visitors that your pet should not have chocolate, especially if your pet has a penchant for begging for food from unsuspecting guests. In the end, the best insurance is to have someone around who can check on your dog. If you are at home throughout the day, you can be aware of what your pet is getting into. If you are not able to supervise your pet regularly, make sure he doesn’t have free reign in an area where chocolate (or other hazards) are readily available. Finally, if you have a pet sitter who visits during the day, show them around your house so they can also be aware of where the hazards are. If they find Fido in the kitchen looking guilty, they’ll be able to pinpoint the problem faster if they know what was in the ransacked cupboard.


Remember that chocolate abounds around the holidays, and these days, chocolate-celebrated holidays come around just about every month. From Halloween to New Years there seems to be chocolate everywhere. Easter is also a hot time for chocolate consumption, for humans and animals alike, since there’s a higher likelihood of your pet coming across a candy egg in the neighborhood. Do your best to pinpoint chocolate and put it out of the reach of your pets. This could mean some present sniffing and shaking for any packages you receive from friends and family. If something could be food, its best to put it high up and out of reach. If you have small children with Halloween stashes, for their sake and your dog’s, ask your kiddos to put their candy out of Fido’s reach. No one wants a kid with a pillaged Halloween stash and a dog with a serious chocolate and candy wrapper condition.

Sources of Chocolate

As mentioned above, your house will probably see an influx of chocolate around the holidays. Sweets like chocolate bunnies or chocolate hearts pose one type of threat since they also come in plastic, cardboard, or foil packages, all of which your dog might ingest. Halloween candy can also fit under this category. Another common source of chocolate is baking and food ingredients: chocolate chips, baking chocolate (normally sold in large blocks), cocoa powder, chocolate liqueur, etc. Finally, an unusual source of chocolate or chocolate products is cocoa shell-based mulches in landscaping. This type of mulch may be popular in your area (after all, who doesn’t want a yard that smells like chocolate?), so be prepared for the possibility of encountering it on your walks. While your dog probably won’t be too inclined to eat mulch, it’s best to be aware. If you are doing landscaping of your own, you may find pet-friendly cocoa bean shell mulch in your store. Most likely this mulch has been treated to remove or neutralize the chemical theobromine, which is the caffeine-like chemical in chocolate that is harmful to your dog. Or you could always opt for a non-cocoa bean mulch.


While you hope that it will never happen, it’s always best to plan for the worst. Despite all your best efforts, sometimes your pet will still find his way to an alluring piece of chocolate. If this happens, it is always best to plan ahead and have all the information you need to get your pet set with timely an appropriate treatment. Read the next post “My Dog Ate Chocolate. Now What Do I Do?” to learn more about how to respond in a chocolate poisoning situation.
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Why Fish Are Our Friends

Fish. You’ve seen them swimming around in their tank, playing hide-and-seek, flashing their fancy fins, and really just making you want to sit and contemplate the meaning of life as you watch their soothing, fluid movements. Fish really are quite fantastic! And we’re lucky that we get to peek in on their quiet underwater world. Here are some things you may know and some things that you didn’t about some of the most popular pet fish!


If you are shopping your local pet store, you’ll find that the cheapest fishy friend a person can buy is a basic goldfish. You can buy these guys for as little at 10 to 20 cents. But don’t be fooled by their price. Goldfish can become a priceless pet with their own unique personality. You’d also be surprised by their longevity. If properly cared for, goldfish can live for 10 or even 20 years. The oldest goldfish on record is 45-year-old Goldie.

Other interesting facts about goldfish:

A group of goldfish is called “a troubling.”

Goldfish don’t have stomachs. That probably means that they never get stomachaches.

If exposed to more light, goldfish can develop a deeper, more vibrant color.

Goldfish memories can last up to 3 to 4 months.

You could also say that the cheapest fish are free! I had some friends who caught some catfish in our local lake and decided to keep them for a while. They got them set up with a tank and everything. And these weren’t your small, pet store kind of fish. They were big, full grown, lake catfish, so they made quite the splash whenever company came over to see them.

Most Expensive

Funny enough, if you’re looking for the most expensive fish you can buy at the pet store, it will probably be a gold fish! Wait, didn’t we just say the goldfish is the cheapest? Yes, but there are also many types and breeds of goldfish out there. In fact, goldfish have been kept as pets for thousands of years. In China, they were considered to be good luck. Some types of fancy goldfish are bigger and have very big, flowing fins. You can buy them for as much as 30 or 40 dollars.

But we’re just talking the little pet store pond right now. If you were a fish aficionado, you might be looking for some of the rarer and more sought-after fish that need to be bought through specialty breeders. And if you’re curious, some of the most expensive fish are specially bred koi, arowanas, or flowerhorn cichlids. A buyer once offered $400,000 for a rare, platinum arowana fish owned by a breeder in Singapore. (The breeder turned the offer down.)


The smallest fish you’re likely to find at the store is a guppy. These guys may only grow to about an inch and a half, and a good part of that length comes from their tail. A guppy can have a beautiful, frilly, and colorful tail.

Something a little harder to find (and not just because of its size) is a Phoenix rasbora. These little fish only get to be about three quarters of an inch long. Many fish owners suggest getting a group of at least six, probably so they don’t feel like the only little fish in a big pond.


If you were to ask a fish dealer, “What’s the biggest fish I can get?” They’d probably respond, “How big is your tank?” All it takes is a visit to your local aquarium to realize that there are some really, really big fish out there.

The biggest fish you can buy at the store might be a koi. Technically, these guys shouldn’t go in an aquarium because their preferred habitat is a pond. And no wonder, since they can grow to be a foot long!

For the record, the biggest fish that you’ll find in the world (not counting sharks in the cartilaginous category) would be the sun fish. This type of bony fish (yep, he’s got bones instead of cartilage) lives in the ocean. The largest sun fish on record measured 14 feet from fin tip to fin tip.

Most Colorful

This is a hard one to put your finger on. Even within breeds, you can have a whole spectrum from modest browns and blacks to vibrant blues and pinks. But my vote is on the mandarin fish since he fits a lot of bright color on his little body. Also check out the Jack Dempsley cichlid. That guy is iridescent, so he’s got all the colors covered.

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Why owning a pet is a great idea for your own happiness and health.

Cats“You definitely have a lot of cats.” One of my friends growing up made this rather blunt observation as she watched our 11 cats (two mamas and nine kittens) scamper around our basement. “Why do you have cats anyway?” she wanted to know. I wonder if that’s a question all pet owners have been asked at one point or another. “Why do you have your pet anyway?”

Well, back in the day as I was growing up, there were many reasons why I had cats. First off, cats were my favorite type of animal. They still are. So, of course I always wanted a cat. Second, we lived at the edge of our subdivision and our yard bordered a vast field. There were plenty of rodents that we wanted to keep away, so we kept cats as mousers.

Both were very good reasons for having cats. But perhaps the best reason of all was my cats made me truly happy. For one, cats make great listeners. That came in especially handy in my teenage years when I had a lot of things I needed to work out. Nothing could bring peace and order back into my teenage universe quite like a good chat with the cat. I’m sure I’m not alone in my cat chatting ways. There are many pet owners who find great companionship in keeping a pet. Scientists and researchers have even done studies on the benefits that we derive from having pets. There’s nothing clearer: having the right pet just makes us happy.

Here’s a few more reasons for why we love pets so much. So the next time someone asks you why you’re such a happy pet owner, you can let them know the many benefits of having a pet!

Social interaction: Any person’s life can be enriched by social interaction. It’s my view that anything that pulls you away from focusing too much on yourself will help you to not dwell on the difficulties and problems you might be experiencing. Or, in my case, having a pet allowed me to talk out the things in my life that I was holding in. Basically, connection on any level with someone outside of ourselves is a great way to be happier.

Fighting the blues: Some have suggested that pets help us to come out of a depressed or blue mood. I believe one of the most healing sensations is being trusted and needed. When we are taking care of a pet, we experience the fulfillment of time well spent and a life well lived. It gives us priority and focus when we know we have a friend to take care of.

Exercise and a healthy lifestyle: If you have a dog or other pet that is active outdoors, you know that your pet almost acts as your personal trainer. I have friends who have welcomed pets into their family partly so they can engage in a more active lifestyle. Having a dog can certainly enrich your active life. There’s nothing better than going on a walk with a (furry) friend!

Routine: If you have a pet, you may have noticed an increase of routine in your life. Pets, especially those with regular eating and exercise cycles, help bring greater structure to your schedule. For the types like me who need structure in order to be effective in their use of time, the time spent caring for a pet can reap rich and unexpected rewards in other areas of your life.

Stress Relief: I love a soothing and quiet moment spent petting a dog or a cat. I can’t deny the huge help it is to have a pet around simply to distract me from the pressures and frustrations that build up throughout the day. And I’m not the only one looking to pets for stress relief. Apparently, last winter there were airports that brought companionship dogs into their terminals to help soothe and boost the morale of holiday travelers.

Joining a community: While pets give you a first line of companionship, they also lead you into a new community of other pet owners. Whether you’re at the pet store or a pet training class, suddenly you have something wonderful in common with the other people there. And we all know that one of the easiest icebreakers in the world is asking about someone else’s pet

The Joy of Play: Laughter, youth, play. A pet can bring all of these things into your life. Whether pet ownership really increases longevity or not, there’s no doubt in my mind that the right pet makes the live we live that much richer and happier

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A Friendly Letter on Litter Boxes

Dear Friend,

You’ve had some questions about your cat and her litter box. She’s been avoiding it lately, and that has caused some problems around the house with eliminations outside of the litter box. I can understand your frustration. When she was just a kitten, she took to her litter box like a natural. Once she connected her natural need for digging and burying her waste with that box of sand in the corner, things seemed like they would be golden. Only now, they’re not so golden. In fact, they probably stink a little bit.

Well, as you know, your cat is pretty finicky. She probably likes to have things just so: that sunny spot on the floor in the afternoons, a scratch on her favorite spot behind her ears, an undisturbed nap on the couch from 9 to 10 in the morning. Like the rest of us, your cat likes routine and normalcy, and she tends to notice and care about seemingly insignificant details and changes.

The root of your problem is that something is bothering your cat. Something about the environment or situation may have changed, or perhaps something about your cat’s preferences has shifted. One way or another, something is making your cat uncomfortable, and that discomfort is causing her to avoid her litter box and take her business elsewhere.

It’s important for you to know that your cat is not eliminating in the wrong place simply to spite you. Reacting with frustration, anger, punishment, or even well intentioned discipline will not help the situation. You will merely be making an uncomfortable and confused cat even more uncomfortable and confused, possibly exacerbating the problem. For example, if you angrily force your cat into her litter box, she will associate that negative experience with her litter box and will be less likely to return to it in the future.

As with any problem, the first step to correcting it is understanding it. Think about the following common kitty preferences. Could any of these apply to your cat?

Change in home environment:
Has anything in the home changed recently? Do you have a child who has left for or returned from college? Have you introduced a new pet into the family? Have you remodeled a portion of your house? Have you simply started closing certain doors that were left open before? If something about your cat’s space or routine has changed, her eliminations may be signs that she is trying to cope with those changes.

What you can do:

  • Pay attention to where your cat is eliminating. Is it all in one spot or one room? If possible, try relocating the litter box to that area.
  • Bring in a secondary litter box and place it elsewhere in the house. It’s possible that your cat just doesn’t like the old location and needs a new one.
  • Be sure that in all cases the location of the litter box is accessible for your cat (never behind normally-closed doors), that it is away from disturbances and surprises (you won’t be turning on the vacuum right next to it), and that it is not near your cat’s food.

Change in litter box:
Have you recently changed the litter that you use? Perhaps the smell or texture of the new litter is off-putting to your cat. Conversely, your cat may have developed an aversion to the litter you normally use. Do you wash the litter bin with scented soap? You cat may be rejecting the litter box on account of the strong, flowery scent. Has your cat been spending a lot of time outdoors? Does your cat prefer enclosed or open spaces? All these factors may be affecting the way your cat feels about her litter box.

What you can do:

  • If you’ve changed your litter brand, try switching back. Maybe kitty just wants her old litter box back.
  • If you haven’t changed your litter, maybe your cat is looking for a change. Try setting out a variety of litters (unscented is usually best) and see which one your cat prefers. You may even find that your cat likes to urinate in one box and defecate in the other.
  • You should always keep the litter box as clean as possible. Clean it out regularly every few days. Empty and wash the bin weekly with unscented soap or baking soda. Let it dry completely and then refill it with fresh sand.
  • If your cat has time outdoors, she may be developing a preference for using dirt. Mix soil in with the kitty litter and see if that makes a difference. You can also transition to a litter that more closely mimics the dirt around your house.
  • If you have a covered litter box, try uncovering it, or vice versa. You should also consider the dimensions of your litter box. Do the sides seem too high? You should consider this especially if you have a kitten. Cats also tend to prefer a litter depth of 2 inches. Try changing your cat’s litter depth to see if it makes a difference.

One last suggestion: when cleaning up after your cat, do not use ammonia-based cleaners. Cat urine contains ammonia, so your cat will still be drawn to the spot, even after you’ve cleaned it. You’ll be better off using a neutralizing cleaner.
Good luck!

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Fleas: The First Response


So you found a flea on your dog. What do you do now? It’s safe to assume that where you find one flea, there will be many more. The presence of an adult flea, whether on your dog or in your home, indicates that you will have many more fleas in other stages of development, from eggs, to larvae, to pupae.

Fast action is your best first response when seeking to divert a full-blown flea infestation. The sooner you remove the adult fleas, the fewer eggs they will be able to produce. However, you must also be prepared to treat and remove the next waves of adult fleas already on their way. Use the following methods repeatedly over a period of weeks to keep the flea populations down.

First, remove the fleas from your dog. If you have spot-on flea treatment, apply it immediately to your pet. Certain flea treatments should be given 4 to 5 days before or after a bath since the dog’s skin oils are needed to make the treatment more effective. If you do not have any flea treatments handy, give your dog a full bath and comb-down.

Many pet owners have used Dawn soap as a quick home remedy for fleas. There are also many commercial shampoos for flea treatment. Be sure to follow all directions on the product labels. A soap bath helps to trap and immobilize fleas because they get caught in the soap. Treated shampoos also act as flea killers. Try working up the soap suds first and then applying them to your dog’s coat. This will limit the time for fleas to escape since rinsing your dog first will give them a chance to leap away. After soaping your dog up, use a comb to remove the fleas, frequently dipping the comb in soapy water to clear off the fleas and prevent you from redistributing them in your dog’s coat.

It may be well worth your effort to buy a comb specially designed for flea removal. These combs are often very fine-toothed. It will take time to comb your dog with such a fine comb, but remember that time spent early will save a multitude of time later if you can avoid fighting a full flea infestation.

A bath and comb down will help to remove adult fleas as well as dislodge flea eggs, larvae, and pupae. Know your own dog’s skin sensitivity and be careful to gauge if the soap treatment is drying out your dog’s skin too much. Consult with your veterinarian about the best product for your dog.

Bathing your dog is only a first response to remove the fleas and relieve your dog from the itching the flea bites will cause. Without further treatment, the fleas can return within a few days. See the article “Fleas: Treatment Ideas” for information about more long-term and preventative treatments.

Second, after a good dog bath, your next line of action against the fleas is to clean any of the areas that your dog likes to frequent. The biggest culprit for a flea breeding ground will be doggy bedding, where eggs may have fallen off your dog and begun to develop. Wash your dog bedding on its own in the washing machine, using strong detergent and the highest temperature possible. Once you have dried the bedding, be sure to clean out and dispose of the lint in the lint trap. Also pay attention to beds, couches, or chairs where your dog likes to sleep.

For anything that you can’t put in the washing machine, clean it thoroughly with a vacuum. It will also be well worth your time to vacuum all your carpets. When you do so, be sure to move your furniture and vacuum the areas that are usually covered since those spots are the dark and cool places where flea larvae like to spend their time.

After vacuuming your home and furniture, be sure to remove and dispose of your vacuum bag or, if you have a bag less model, clean out your vacuum canister and filter. Don’t stop at just cleaning out the vacuum; remove the vacuum waste completely from your home by immediately taking out the trash. This will prevent the fleas from jumping out of your kitchen trash can and right back on to your dog.


An alternative some dog owners use is to put a flea collar in their vacuum bag. Ideally this will kill the fleas that are vacuumed up and save you the trouble of emptying your bag after each cleaning session.

After your first response of cleaning your dog and your home environment, you will want to follow up with treatments and preventative measures that will keep the fleas at bay. See future articles for more tips on treating fleas in your yard and home.

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