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As summer break winds down, vacation suitcases are unpacked, and the kids start stuffing their backpacks with supplies for a new year, you may notice your pet acting differently – what’s the deal? It’s not your imagination: this season can trigger behavioral issues. We often see an increase in training and behavioral questions from our customers right around when school is back in session.

When children suddenly aren’t around to shower their favorite furry friend with attention, pets can feel lonely and confused about the decrease in human presence in the house. As autumn approaches, the weather changes, work schedules get busier ahead of the holidays, and people spend less recreational time outside with their animals. Loneliness, decreased physical activity, and change can trigger depression and anxious actions like excessive chewing, barking, and litter box issues.

Luckily, there are things pet owners can do to help relieve stress in pets and curb negative seasonal behaviors:

  • Spend more productive quality time with pets when you are home. Take them on walks, actively engage in playtime or obedience training, or get children to engage with pets before and/or after school. Take them along to school drop off (if they like a car ride!)
  • Offer special chewing, treat-dispensing, or puzzle-type toys to keep pets’ minds occupied when human companions are away from home. Give these coveted toys only when you are leaving the house.
  • Ignore excessive barking whenever possible. If you open the door to let your dog in because they are barking, this teaches the dog that barking gets the door opened. Wait for a pause in barking before letting them inside. Try not to use the backyard as a place of banishment or punishment, and as always, never leave a dog outdoors in the heat.
  • Clean litter boxes and small animal cages regularly. Often, people can get busier in the fall and this unpleasant task can fall by the wayside, triggering pets to eliminate in all the wrong places. Setting an alarm on your phone to remind yourself to clean them regularly can be useful.
  • Consider hiring a dog walker to come a couple of hours after you’ve left the house to help Fido expend energy before they come up with a creative way to destroy your furniture or shoes.

Resolutions to behavioral problems in pets are most effective when they address the root causes. Barking might be the symptom, it’s the stress that causes the barking that is the real issue.

As always, please feel free to ask us any questions you have about caring for your pet. We love them just as much as you do!

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What is today’s schedule? White Hall High School’s schedule is constantly changing and can be difficult for students to remember. Sophomore John Smith decided to solve this problem by creating a scheduling tool on his self-engineered website, www.example.com. John utilized the PHP programming language to create an automatically updated, real-time schedule. Students and even teachers can create an account on John’s site and peruse the current day’s agenda, as well tomorrow’s upcoming schedule. We recently sat down with John to ask him about the scheduling project.

US: When did you start this project, and why?

JS: [I started] sometime last year. I’ve built upon it way more than is probably healthy, but boredom and laziness can only go so far. The constant sifting through my backpack to get my schedule was getting old really quickly, and I felt like it was distracting and disrespectful to the teachers. At the time I was just starting to learn PHP, so I figured I’d use that to write a schedule that changes according to each day. It spiraled out of control and has yet to achieve its tragic crash, landing on the side of some volcano in a rainforest somewhere. For some reason, this project won’t die like the others.

US: Do you receive a lot of visits to your webpage?

JS: Yesterday I received over 200 hits. Of course, hits wax and wane; I get more hits during a new semester, when people still aren’t used to their schedules.

Not surprisingly, John plans on majoring in Computer Science at FullSail, UCF, FSU, FIT, FAU, or RIT. “I probably won’t major in web development. That has always been more of a hobby, but I wouldn’t mind doing it for a living and would definitely consider transferring majors to web development if computer science isn’t all it’s cracked up to be,” John reasoned.

To program your own schedule, click here to visit John’s site.

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Casey Key is an 8-mile-long barrier island off the coast of Nokomis between Sarasota and Venice. This underdeveloped and secluded gem has no high-rise condo buildings, only a few small motels, and tons of natural coastal beauty to enjoy. With minimal tourist activity and the majority of the island’s beach access restricted for private use, you will feel like you are living on your own tropical island paradise on Casey Key.

This prestigious community features stunning white sand beaches, calm azure waters, and lush tropical foliage and mangroves that provide a habitat for scores of native birds and other wildlife. Enjoy the uncrowded beaches of Casey Key while watching dolphins and manatees swim by in the Gulf of Mexico or Blackburn Bay.

Once home to Seminole Indians, Casey Key welcomed its first settlers after the Civil War and was further developed during the local real estate boom in the 1920s. Casey Key is connected to the mainland by two bridges, including a historic pivot or swing bridge dating back to the 1920s. Unlike surrounding barrier islands, Casey Key has been left largely untouched by major development and is home to a small number of residents compared to other local coastal areas. As a result, the atmosphere and ambiance of Casey Key is unmatched in its seclusion and tranquility. 

Enjoy the island lifestyle without sacrificing the conveniences of major amenities, which are just minutes away from Casey Key on the mainland. There is easy access to top restaurants, golfing, shopping, and myriad other cultural activities and entertainment of the Siesta Key, Sarasota, and Venice areas. You’ll have plenty to do including swimming, fishing, boating, shelling, snorkeling, diving, sailing, jet skiing, picnicking and much more on this beautiful tropical island. After spending a day in the sun, you can dine al-fresco on the waterfront at Casey Key Fish House and experience a breathtaking Gulf Coast sunset.

Homes on Casey Key are spacious, elegant, and have “Old Florida” charm. Many of these exceptional properties are situated on spacious lots with waterfront views and private beach access. With one winding main road throughout the island, many properties are tucked away off private drives. It’s no wonder Casey Key is known to be an enclave for celebrities looking for seclusion and privacy. You’ll feel like a celebrity too as you experience the ultimate in luxurious coastal living when you choose a home on Casey Key.

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Introducing the latest technology in infant sleep safety. The BabyCare Hero infant breathing and movement monitor is the only newborn monitor on the market that attaches directly to baby’s diaper for maximum accuracy. Enjoy brighter days and more restful nights with the BabyCare Hero monitor.

To use the BabyCare Hero, simply clip the breathing monitor to the top of baby’s diaper across his or her stomach. Then, flip the baby monitoring system switch to the “on” position to instantly begin monitoring your newborn’s breathing pattern. If a fifteen-second absence of movement is detected, the BabyCare Hero will emit an audible alarm and app alert to alert parents that baby needs attention. BabyCare guarantees the fewest false alarms due to the Hero’s advanced monitoring technology.

Unlike competing products, the BabyCare Hero is one simple piece of equipment that clips to baby’s diaper and does not require a movement mat or other monitoring aids. The BabyCare Hero is also the only infant movement monitoring system that is 100% portable! Monitor baby effortlessly while he or she is out of sight in a rear-facing car seat, or allow baby to sleepover at Grandma’s house without worry. The BabyCare Hero is battery-powered and clinically tested to be safe for all little ones. It emits no harmful frequency waves or radiation, tested and guaranteed.

Nine out of ten pediatricians recommend breathing and/or movement monitors to parents of premature babies (preemies.) We recommend the BabyCare Hero to any new parent who wishes to enjoy a good night’s sleep knowing their precious newborn is safe and sound! There is nothing more valuable than sleep in baby’s first year. The BabyCare Hero will help encourage parenting confidence and peace of mind, and is one of the best baby shower gifts a new parent could receive! Click here to buy the BabyCare Hero today!