The Quest for Happiness –The K9 Way!

A home filled with wagging tails, paw prints and slobbery kisses is a happy place! If you want to know the true meaning of unconditional love and unmatched happiness, then you need to ask a pet parent or be one! 

Vinita Seth & Astro

Aren’t we all searching for the elusive, ‘Happiness’, with each action of ours directed towards embracing it? How often do we get undiluted happiness or even come close to it? When are we in that space of experiencing unconditional love and adulation? It is this quest for happiness that remains a constant on the journey with every person resorting to various tools and techniques best suited to their temperaments to discover it.

But how many of us do really find happiness? There is, however, a special section of people who have undoubtedly, experienced pure joy, and those fortunate ones are the dog lovers who enjoy pet parenting their pets and in return are showered with the ‘happiness blessing’ by their beloved pooches.

Home & Heart – both ruled by your poocha

The adage ‘Dogs are man’s best friend’ is truer than ever. A best friend loves, comforts, is fun to be with, and above all is completely non-judgmental and your pets are all that and so much more. They are home and heart, a cosy warm fireplace to sit by, soaking up all the sadness and pain. Their adoring eyes are like delicious hot chocolate on a cold dark winter night. Are you still wondering what is that makes them best of friends?

A dog delights and loves, brightening up any home with its aura and vibe.Just having a dog resting beside you eases out the tension, evens out the breathing leading to a myriad of health benefits. To be greeted early morning with a soft head resting on the knee looking up with puppy eyes is a perfect happy start to a day. Dogs and puppies just know how to liven up and energise a space with so much cheer that there is hardly any room left for despondency.

The best therapist has fur & four legs

In today’s challenging times the need for guidance and counselling is on the rise and a proven and effective therapy suggested by mental health professionals worldwide is pet therapy. Many studies have proven that a pet is beneficial to human’s emotional, physical, and mental well being. Dogs are the best therapists for people dealing with anxiety, stress, depression, communication challenges, emotional issues, and posttraumatic stress disorder. These furry therapists have an innate ability to read emotions, understand body language, and are the best listeners.

It is almost as if they sense the emotions and accordingly prescribe the treatment. The treatment may require the pet to be demanding and mischievous if the patient happens to be dull, sad, and gloomy or they may just cuddle up, lick and stay close to the patient if they sense loneliness, low selfesteem, and unworthiness. They know, ’one size doesn’t fit all’ and interact according to individual requirements. It is not uncommon for the pet to shut the laptop or paw the mobile phone if as per them too much time is being spent on these devices! They are by nature social and inclusive, and it is this trait which enhances communication, interaction and bonding between pets and their family.

The service that pets render to humans in the amount of positivity and security they furry angels healing us and giving us unconditional love.

Streng th, cou rage a nd love a re prerequisites for a high happiness quotient. Ancient Chinese philosopher and writer Lao Tzu truly said, “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” In English novelist George Eliot’s words, “We long for affection altogether ignorant of our faults. Heaven has accorded this to us in the uncritical canine attachment.” It is this uncritical canine attachment that energises, enriches and enhances the quality of life, boosting the happiness quotient.

Truly said that finding happiness in small joys is the way to be! So, take your happiness quotient a notch higher – cuddle up with your pet, go for a relaxing walk, or just sit together in your balcony or garden and watch a beautiful sunset.

Raising Wiggles, Building Wiggles

The pet care eco-system was a tough one to navigate, but being a pet parent herself, Anushka Iyer decided to disrupt things and create a holistic pet healthcare company—Wiggles.in. She is building a world that’s worthy of our loving pets and community animals, and her focus is sharp as it could ever be.

Anushka Iyer, Founder & CEO of Wiggles.in, is a doting pet parent to Wiggles, Buddy and Rico and other countless pets she fosters. “I am lucky that my work allows me to build a better world for pets and their people,” she remarks. In a candid conversation, Dogs & Pups discovers there’s so much that keeps Anushka going, along with some very gripping experiences. Here is the excerpt.

D&P: Let’s get right to it, how does your day look like with Wiggles?

Anushka: As a pet parent, my responsibility towards Wiggles and my other two pets Buddy and Rico comes first. I am thankful to them and their quirks, each of them has taught me so many things. Like every pet, they can get me to cave in with their puppy eyes, and honestly Buddy would eat my hand if he could.

Work is wholesome, in fact Wiggles is the Chief Barking Officer at Wiggles.in, and he really knows his worth. Whenever it comes to filming with him, we know it’s going to be challenging yet oh so adorable. My team says that he definitely has the qualities of a star.

In fact, he also ends up attending meetings and taking other dogs for a walk every once in a while. Holding their leash between his teeth, pets are really smart and intuitive indeed. Things weren’t always like this though. Wiggles had a traumatic childhood. Dogs and cats are meant to be loved, because they give us so much, but often they are ill-treated.

When I first saw Wiggles as a puppy, his skin was in an appalling state, only to understand that his caretakers gave him a bath with washing detergent. He needed help like many other pets who fall victim to uncaring breeders. We brought him in and started his treatment. Today, he is much better, by the grace of our vets who are life-savers.

D&P: Who inspires you?

Anushka: Animals, who say and teach us so much. We have a lot to learn from them, simply because they teach us how to live in the moment. The fact is that they have no self-guilt and still have loads of selfless love to give. When we go back to our roots, we realise we are here to solve a greater purpose, which is to make a change for them. That’s when we realise that we are on the right track.

D&P: Tell us about the humble beginning

Anushka: We set out to do good and that’s still the number one priority on our list today, every single day. When we started back in December 2018, from just a bunch of us to now over 200 of us across India, I draw a lot of inspiration from our team of passionate and dedicated animal lovers, who go above & beyond to ensure the health & wellbeing of all pets, everyday.

D&P: What’s all about your ‘doing good’ policy?

Anushka: Besides creating a holistic eco-system for pets with almost 50 innovative pet products which include gut-healthy food to probiotic immunity strips and pet sanitisers, we at Wiggles also provide online vet consultations, diet consultations & behavioural consults across India. Much more than a consultation it is an assurance of a listening ear that will guide pet parents, irrespective of the time of day or night. Pet parents have undoubtedly faced at some point of time, panic situations when they need a second opinion from the comfort of their home – that’s exactly where we step in.

In fact, we have our Wiggles Tribe community on Facebook where our in-house vets, trainers, groomers, behaviourists, and nutritionists offer free and reliable advice to pet parents. The community today has over 30,000 pet parents who have become Wiggles advocates and also step in to help other pet parents – that is the community spirit we live for. Our jewel of the crown is our very own dog boarding Petsville based in Pune, which is spread across 22,000 sq ft of lush greenery & equipped with amenities like 24×7 vet assistance, grooming care, dog park, day care & training.

D&P: Mention five things you can’t do without?

Anushka: One: My pets, always! Two: Everyday hustle at work; Three: Some ‘me’ time at the end of the day; Four: Books! Five: Connecting with like-minded individuals.

D&P: Tell us about #BondedByBlood

Anushka: In early December 2020, there was a situation that many pet parents faced, and I did too. My Rico ended up suffering from tick fever and he was in dire need of a blood transfusion. Even though we are well connected, we still found it difficult to find a pet donor. We eventually did, but the fright was real and it made us wonder how helpless pet parents must feel in a similar situation. Thus was born Bonded by Blood – our attempt to unite willing pet parents who can donate their pet’s blood to save a life of a recipient pet.

When we began this endeavour, we undertook a survey and realised over 42 percent of pet parents didn’t know their pets could donate blood, and 51 percent of pet parents didn’t know pets have a blood group. Shockingly only 2 percent of pets have donated blood. We started educating pet parents, registering pet donors and connecting them with pets who needed blood to survive. I urge pet parents to come forward and register their pets as a donor, and hope they will never need to face a day such as this. It is a nightmare and doesn’t need to be like that, if we can bond together.

D&P: Your closing thoughts?

Anushka: When pets give us so much, the least we can do is give them genuine healthcare that results in happiness. And this is just the beginning.

DO YOU FOCUS™ ON GOOD HEALTH FOR YOUR DOG?

Introducing FOCUS™, An All-New Super Premium, All Breed Formula for Puppies and Adults

Common belief suggests that dogs have evolved from wolves over a period of 15,000 years. Owing to this ancestral descent, dogs too are considered to be carnivorous by nature. Perhaps why, their digestive tract has been designed to digest more proteins and less carbohydrates.

Although dogs have adapted as omnivores, their natural diet comprises primarily of meat, and with good reason. You see, grains are difficult to digest and create disturbances in the dog’s metabolism, because it lacks the enzymes to break down such food during digestion. On closer inspection, one discovers the adverse effects a high grain diet can have on a dog in the long term.

These include:
• Promoting the production of inflammatory chemicals that cause skin allergies and hairfall.
• Increased insulin production that could lead to diabetes and obesity – harder to digest grains lead to irregular bowels, higher stool volumes and indigestion.

At Drools, we realise that every dog has a notable carnivorous bias. Keeping this in mind, we have designed a completely balanced diet, that offers all the essential vitamins and minerals, but most importantly replicates the dog’s natural dietary preferences – thereby reducing the risk of allergy and low nutrition intake.


PRESENTING FOCUS

A corn, wheat and soy-free formula for all breeds of dogs, this super premium formula has been carefully considered to provide variety and extra nutrition that is missing from most commercially prepared diets. Made from the finest natural ingredients, it is just the diet for your dog. One, that promotes optimal digestibility, growth and a long, healthy life.


FOCUS on Starters

The Drools® FOCUSTM Super Premium All Breed Starter Formula is a complete food specifically designed for the needs of weaning puppies during the period of 3 weeks to 3 months. The process of weaning is considered to be a stressful one as puppies shift from mother’s milk to solid food. During this transition, the little ones demand higher levels of protein, energy and essential nutrients to ensure optimal growth. This grain-free formula comes in an easily rehydrable form making it also suitable for pregnant, lactating mothers.

Gut Friendly Formula: The Puppy’s digestive system is immature and develops slowly with age. Highly digestible ingredients are especially incorporated to support optimum absorption and assimilation in the body.

Ideal Growth & Development: This formula is enriched by quality ingredients that support safe and overall growth of puppies, post weaning. Also, it provides extra essential nutrients for foetal development & milk production in mother dogs.

Growth & Intelligence: Adequate supply of DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) nourishes nerve cells and aids in brain development. A puppy with a healthy brain is easily trainable and more active.
Protection & Immunity: Trusted quality Prebiotics (FOS and MOS) and Probiotics ensure a healthy gut environment, reduce intestinal pathogens and provide optimum protection while antioxidants like Vitamin E and Vitamin C and organic minerals boost immunity.

FOCUS on Puppies

Real Chicken is the #1 Ingredient: Real fresh chicken, produced under environmentally controlled conditions, helps provide the highest quality protein to maintain a healthy body.

Digestive Health: Whole grains such as rice and oats help in facilitating nutrient absorption and ease digestion.
Healthy Skin & Shiny Coat: Optimum levels of Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids along with Biotin, Zinc and Vitamin E ensure healthy skin and a soft, shiny coat.

Optimum Growth: Finest quality ingredients rich in energy and proteins promote optimum growth in puppies. DHA from natural fish oil helps support optimum development of brain and nervous system
Dental Health: Crunchy kibble helps reduce plaque buildup, whiten teeth and freshen breath.
Improved Immunity: Promoted by anti-oxidant rich nutrition, including Vitamin C & E to ensure a healthy immune system & overall cellular health.

FOCUS on Adults

Real Chicken is the #1 Ingredient: Real fresh chicken, produced under environmentally controlled conditions, helps provide the highest quality protein to maintain a healthy body.

Digestive Heath: Whole grains such as rice and oats help in facilitating nutrient absorption and ease digestion.
Healthy Skin & Shiny Coat: Optimum levels of Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids along with Biotin, Zinc and Vitamin E ensure healthy skin and a soft, shiny coat.

Optimum Growth: Finest quality ingredients rich in energy and proteins promote optimum growth in adults. DHA from natural fish oil helps support optimum development of brain and nervous system.

Dental Health: Crunchy kibble helps reduce plaque buildup, whiten teeth and freshen breath.

Improved Immunity: Promoted by anti-oxidant rich nutrition, including Vitamin C & E to ensure a healthy immune system & overall cellular health.

Bone & Joint Health: Contains Glucosamine & Chondroitin Sulphate along with Magnesium, Vitamin C and Omega 3 fatty acids to help maintain healthy joints.

A Story of Trust, Nutrition, Wellness, Global Growth & more…

Drools is a brand that needs no introduction. As pet parents you must have come across this brand. But today experience their journey and understand what it takes to make your furries happy!


From humble beginnings come great things

Drools, the brainchild of founder Fahim Sultan, was set up in 2009 to focus on nutrition, health, and welfare of pets. The production of pet food for dogs and cats began in 2010. Drools Pet Food Private Ltd. today is one of the fastest growing pet food brands in South Asia with large product ranges developed with international quality standards.
When Fahim moved back to his hometown after completing university to learn the ropes of the business, he was able to spend a lot of time with his pets. Being an ardent pet lover his focus was to provide high-quality ingredients without by-products and fillers and an objective to provide a wholesome, healthy and nourishing diet for pets.

Healthy food is directly proportional to happiness & longevity

Backed by the best veterinarians, Fahim was able to garner in-depth knowledge of animal nutrition. After intensive research Drools was born to bridge the gap and ensure that all pets received the right kind of wholesome nutrition with clean ingredients. Food being the foundation of health, pets needed to have clean nutrition, food that was free of additives, hormones, antibiotics, fillers or by-products.

Integrating nutrition with the goodness of science

Drools integrates its raw materials with the IB Group (the parent company) in addition to sourcing from trusted farmers and ranchers. It is interesting to note that the IB Group does not house a butchery on its production facility and it stocks only high-quality poultry and eggs as its business offerings. This further ensures that the raw materials sourced by Drools are of top-notch quality.

Drools’ team of nutritionists and veterinarians from the US have ensured and created a superior formulation of food, specific to the growing needs of pets. Not just that, extensive research has also ensured a consistent taste, better digestibility and absorption across the products. These products are nutritionally balanced and undergo rigorous quality checks to ensure the best quality of food.

Quality that speaks for itself

With an aim to provide the right balance of nutrients, the entire process from assessing the raw materials to processing at Drools happens in-house, leading to a hygienic and consistent product that is highly recommended by vets. Automated systems with minimalistic human touch maintain optimum hygiene while processing the food. The production facilities are ISO 9001:2000 certified and in sync with global standards. The plant uses German machinery and a vacuum coating process to ensure premium quality of food.

Following through with PM Narendra Modi’s emphasis to lower dependence on imported raw materials and reducing the disruption of supply chain, the brand takes pride in being self-reliant with the entire range of products being manufactured in its in-house production facilities.

Garnering trust with global growth

Drools today is available in more than 30,000 outlets pan-India and across all leading e-commerce platforms. It is the 2nd largest brand in India gathering close to 17 percent market share and the largest in volume in the cat food category. Another feather to its cap, Drools is now being exported to 18 countries in South East Asia, Middle East (UAE) and some select African countries. The company starts operations in Australia (permits received – operation started from the 3rd week of
March ‘22), New Zealand, and parts of Europe in the 2nd quarter of 2022 (June beyond).

This is worth mentioning so as to instill the credibility of its produce as they clear multiple layers of efficacy, nutritional and palatability checks at the various audit points of the above-mentioned countries. The company has been able to successfully synergise research, manufacturing, distribution and branding of its products profitably in a short span of time.

Giving back to the society

As one of its initiatives to give back, Drools supports several local NGOs and animal shelters by providing them with pet food and supplements. In addition to this, Drools along with the IB Group runs charitable schools where more than 7500 children receive free education. This drive is from the founder’s family, with the aim of educating every child in the community, especially the girl child. A sizeable amount of sales proceeds from Drools also goes towards this beautiful cause of community building through care and maintenance.

In the coming years, Drools aims to further expand the business to the regions of Middle East, South East Asia, and Europe. With the headquarters located in Bengaluru, the company is now targeting to open an office in UAE to facilitate smoother operations. Dr Shashank Sinha, CEO, Drools Pet Food Private Limited,commented, “We have been consistently working to create healthier nutrition for pets and continue to manufacture wholesome dietary packs to make a difference. Growth expansion will be the continued course of action in the next few years, capturing newer markets, building a larger market share and scaling profits. Focusing on the main channels of pet specialty stores, breeders and veterinarians will be the way forward for the brand.”

 

 

Driven by heart for pets and pet parents

Grow old along with me- THE Best is yet to be!


Varsha Verma with Rocky

Life with a paw friend is full of surprises, unconditional love and happiness. Seeing your dog grow old with you is a blessing. Yet, there are instances where pet parents abandon their pets in old age. Here’s how you can have a meaningful and harmonious paw-time with your senior pet. –by Varsha Verma

A recent news of Spain to consider pets’ welfare in divorce battles is good news for all. Similar decisions have already been taken in France and Portugal, where the judges have started considering pets as family members and not objects which can be owned by any of the partner. Now the law says that couples can obtain shared custody of their pets. The judges also ensure that the pet goes to a person who can take care of the pet properly. So, the well-being of the pet has become a major concern.

Also, during pandemic, when people were huddled in their homes, many new pet parents emerged. Needless to say, they had more time at hand and pets kept them company when they were secluded from rest of the society. But, there is a bad news too. After the offices started opening up and people went back to their normal lives, it became difficult for few pet parents to take care of their pets. And then the abandonment started. So many pets landed in animal care centres!

Why abandon?
Abandonment also happens to senior dogs as many people are not able to care for an old or ailing dog. This is very inhuman to dogs as their world is the people they live with. They cannot adjust anywhere, especially on streets as they are not used to living on streets. Ageing is a normal process for all living beings and dogs are no exception.

When does a dog become senior?
Mostly, people calculate their pet’s age in human years by multiplying it with 7 or 8. That’s not true for all dogs. Different dog breeds have different life span, and hence different ages when they become seniors. In general, large breed dogs age faster than small ones. A rough guide based on breed size is that small breed become senior around 10-12 years; medium size breeds age around 8-9 years and large and giant size breeds become senior around 6-7 years.

What happens when a dog becomes senior?
With age, dogs become less mobile and their hearing and vision decreases. They fall sick more often. They get tired easily and need lesser calories, else they become obese. But, these are all general symptoms, which even we as humans go through. We can make the golden years of our pets happy and healthy because genetics and lifestyle of your pet play a significant role in their overall health.

How to take care of a senior dog?
Dogs will always behave like a child. So, while they must be at their ripe age, they will continue to amuse you and love you to the core. Here are a few tips on how to take care for them during this time:

  • Spend quality time: The best thing you can do for your paw-companion is to spend quality time with him. Sometimes, all they need is a pat on the back and your presence near them.
  •  Give age-appropriate balanced diet: Time and again, we have stressed upon the need for age-appropriate balanced mean for your pet. Since they are less mobile now, they need lesser calories. Consult your vet for a diet plan for your ageing dog. You can also gradually shift to a well-balanced pet food, especially formulated for senior dogs. They are low in fat while being nutritionally-balanced.
  •  Give food supplements: Talk to your vet to give your dog supplements as per his age and health.
  •  More water bowls at different places: Senior dogs may forget where their water bow is placed, so consider keeping several water bowls around the house so that he can reach it whenever he feels thirsty.
  •  Give them regular exercise: Even if your dog is old, he needs regular exercise to maintain their weight and health. The sessions can be shorter as they might get tired easily. Have patience! Let them walk at their own pace.
  •  Play games with your dog: Even when dog grows old, he loves to play and please his human parent. So, play with him – hide and seek, stuff a kong toy, do whatever he likes.
  •  Groom them regularly: Grooming is important to keep them healthy and take care of their hair and skin, which may become dry and flaky. Regular brushing is a must!
  •  Take care of oral hygiene: Give him dental treats and take him for a dental check to your vet.
  •  Keep vaccinations up to date: Getting your pet vaccinated is important for responsible pet parenting. Make sure he does not miss any shots.
  •  Make his abode cosy: Senior dogs might not be able to jump onto beds or sofas to sleep. So, give them a warm, quiet, cosy place to sleep.
  •  Let them rest when they want: Do not disturb your dog while sleeping. He might need rest. Give him his space.
  •  Make changes as per their need: Some dogs might not be able to climb stairs, you might have to build a ramp to make their movement easy or avoid stairs at all. Some older dogs lose their vision, at that time, you need to avoid shifting furniture inside house so that they do not bump into things and get hurt.
  •  Look out for warning signals: Always keep a check on your dog, his eating and sleeping patterns. If you find he is in discomfort, take him to your vet ASAP.
  •  Take them for regular health check-ups: Since dogs cannot tell us what they are going through, it is important to take them to their vet for regular check-ups, maybe once in six months if not more. This will ensure that your pet receive medical attention as soon as any ailment arises.
  •  Give love and attention: Dogs thrive on love; even if they are unable to see or hear you, they can feel your love through your actions.

Capturing love in every frame!

Pawsitive Love Forecast 2022

Varsha Verma
& Rocky

Here’s how to have a loving and lovable year with your pawsome friends!

Joyful January : January brings cold, which means your four paw friend needs extra care. Give him a healthy diet and remember, he might need more food than he usually eats to beat the cold. It is time to snuggle with your pet and keep him close to you. Enjoy the companionship, love him and cuddle him as there are promises to keep. Also, keep a watch for strays and try to give them a cosy place to sleep.

Faithful February: With February comes love… it’s the Valentine month… commitment with your pooch furever… to be with them and take care of them even in their silver age. They are a part of our world but we are their world… let’s make this world a beautiful place for them.

Magical March: India is a land of festivals and March signifies the colours of love… let’s spread the paw-love on Holi. Our pooches know just one language – the language of love. Let’s learn this language to make this world a happier place.

Adventurous April: It’s spring time folks. Plan a road trip with your furry friend. Let him enjoy newer places and of course new smells. Let him sniff around and see the world. Get out the adventurous streak.

Mindful May: Summers are harsh, both for us and your paw-friends. Keep sunshine at bay, keep them indoors in a cool environment. Give them a lot of cool water to drink. Let them bite into fresh cucumbers and other cooling vegetables. Take care of the strays too. Give them a cool place to relax if possible.

Jaunting June: Since June is about summer holidays for children, it is the best time to go on a short trip with your pooch. Check a pet-friendly location and have a good time with your family.

Judicious July: When it pours, there are dog ticks and fleas. Come rainy season and it is time to take extra care of your pooch. Check his coat thoroughly for any ticks and fleas. Give him appropriate treatment, in consultation with your vet.

Amusing August: Every dog loves to please his family. Teach your dog a new trick and see the joy on his face when he gets it right. Give him a lot of treats and love when he learns it. Play hide and seek with your pooch and let him run around.

Savvy September: Vaccination is a very important aspect of pet parenting. So, check your pet’s vaccination schedule. Schedule a vet visit for a yearly screening.

Observant October: Observe your pet closely. Is he happy, sad or just bored? If your pet is hale and healthy, there is nothing to worry. Else, see the underlying cause if he behaves strange. Observe his general health condition and give him the comfort if he is growing old or showing signs of ageing.

Nippy November: November marks the onset of cold. It is also a festive time. With Diwali around, there’s a positive cheer all around. Make your pet a part of your festivities. Say ‘No’ to crackers. Enjoy the positive vibes and spread happiness all around.

Dreamy December: The Christmas bells are ringing…the weather is awesome…delicacies all around…it is the dreamy part of the year! Give your pooch load full of love, tuck them in winter clothes, have fun and be merry until the calendar shows it’s time for a fresh, new and happy beginning once again!

Furry Friendly Fervor of Festive Gifting

SuperPets—A Touch to Heal Your Beloved Pets