The Omlet Blog

Category Archives: Guides

Top Tips for Taking Your Dog to the Beach

Many of us would agree that there are few things nicer on a hot summer’s day than a trip to the beach, and as long as you come prepared there is no reason to leave your pooch at home. Swimming is one of the best forms of exercise for dogs, and you can stay as long as you like without having to worry about getting home to let the dog out!

There are however a few things you need to do before you leave, and some things that are good to know when it comes to dogs and the beach. Here are our best tips for a successful outing!

 

Find a dog-friendly beach

Dogs are not always allowed on public beaches, but there is normally an area close-by where you can take your dog. Search for a dog-friendly beach nearby, read up on the rules, and make sure you follow them!

 

Keep an eye on your dog
Even if you’re at a dog-friendly beach you must always keep an eye on your dog, and show consideration to the other beach goers and dog owners. No one appreciates being sprayed with water from a wet dog as they’re relaxing with a good book! If you’re not absolutely sure your dog will come when you call or stay close to you, it might be best to keep it on the lead. 

 

You also have to make sure your dog stays safe at the beach. Dogs are amazing at finding things in the sand that might not be good for them, everything from leftover barbecue ingredients to rotting fish. Glass, sharp shells, or even old fish hooks may hide in the sand, and can hurt your dog’s precious paws.


Teach your dog to swim
Many believe that all dogs know how to swim, but that is not the case. Even if all dogs will automatically paddle their feet if you put them in the water, there are several dog breeds that aren’t built to float. Breeds with large heads and short legs will struggle to keep their head over the surface to breathe. If your dog seems to love swimming but you’re not completely sure about their ability, it might be a good idea to invest in a doggy life jacket.

That being said, there are lots of dogs that don’t really enjoy the water, or who will be perfectly happy running around in the shallow parts where they don’t have to swim. Never force a dog to come swimming with you!

 

Even if your dog is a strong swimmer, it’s important for you as an owner to keep an eye on them as they’re out in the water. Make sure you stay informed about currents in the water, and don’t let the dog in if there are high waves or lots of boats or jet skis around. Dogs can easily get too excited in the water and swim out into deep waters, where the current might be much stronger. You also have to supervise dogs playing and swimming with children.

 

Come prepared
Make sure you pack everything you need for a day at the beach. Dogs will need plenty of fresh water, so get enough for the whole family. It’s a good idea to have a collapsible water bowl, so you don’t have to make your dog drink straight from the bottle. This way you can also keep track of how much water the dog has actually had.

Bring toys that will entertain your dog throughout the day. If you’re able to throw balls or other toys down the beach, that is a perfect activity that will entertain your dogs, and give it a good amount of exercise. Just make sure the toys float if they end up in the water.

 

If you’re staying at the beach for a few hours, or maybe even the whole day, it’s important to make sure the dog can get some shade. If you’re not sure whether there are shaded areas where you’re going or not, bring a parasol or a small beach tent where the dog can relax during the hottest hours of the day.

 

Before you leave

Make sure you leave nothing behind, and clean up after yourself and your dog!

If there are taps or beach showers where you are, you might want to rinse your dog before you leave for the day. Salt can cause irritation to the dog’s skin, and sand can get in their eyes as they’re trying to get rid of it from their faces, which can cause eye infections and lots of discomfort. The dog will probably also have been exposed to plenty of dirt and bacteria during all the exploring.

If you can’t find any fresh water at the beach, it might be a good idea to scrub your dog with a towel before you get in the car (maybe mainly to not end up with a desert in the trunk), and then give him or her a quick bath when you get home.

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides


How To Prevent and Treat Red Mite

A familiar problem for backyard chicken keepers and commercial enterprises for laying hens, is infestation of the birds’ environment with Dermanyssus gallinae, also known as red (poultry) mites. Compared to other poultry parasites such as fowl ticks, lice and flies, mites are by far the most common, most destructive and difficult to remove. Red mites are nocturnal parasites and hide themselves in all kinds of gaps and cracks during the daytime. This makes the treatment of red mites harder and more complicated.

 

SIGNS AND DIAGNOSIS

Red mites are up to 1mm in size. The title “Red” has been given to this mite as it turns from grey to red after it had a blood feed. Once the infestation becomes significant, your chickens will become anaemic. Their wattles and the combs will start looking pale and their egg production will drop significantly. Red mites also cause skin irritation, feather pecking, weight loss and restlessness in the flock. Because of the mites your chickens will probably be reluctant to go to bed, because that’s where the mites are!

When checking your chicken coop for red mites, check the perch’s at the end and cracks and crevices. An even easier way to check is to run a white paper towel underneath the perches at night. If there are red mites, at this time they will be on the underside on the perch after feeding on your chickens and you will be able to see red streaks on your paper towel.

 

PREVENTION

Prevention is always better than cure. But this is not always that simple. Wild birds or new chickens can transmit red mites to your coop. It’s a good idea to check for red mite routinely when you clean your chicken coop and use some preventative treatment to the coop. For example, you can use Diatomaceous earth as part of the weekly clean (DE is a 100% natural powder which dehydrates parasites it comes into contact with). All types of chicken coops can get red mite, however wooden coops tend to suffer from infestations the most.

Unfortunately red mites can survive for up to 10 months in an empty hen house, so leaving a coop empty for a while doesn’t usually fix the problem. Choosing your housing carefully can help prevent infestations. Omlet’s Eglu chicken coops are made from plastic which makes it very difficult for red mites to make a home. And in the event that there is a Red mite infestation, they are quick and easy to clean. A quick blast with a pressure washer should do the trick.

 

TREATMENT

 

1) Cleaning

If you find lots of red mite in the coop, it’s time for a big clean up. The initial clean out will take a couple of hours for wooden coops, with a plastic coop it will take less time. Remove all birds from the house and strip the house down as much as possible. If you have a felt roof you will need to remove this and have your coop re-felted.

 

2) Mite disinfectant detergent

Mix a mite disinfectant detergent (such as Smite Professional Disinfectant 1 Litre Concentrate or Barrier Red Mite X 500ml Concentrate) with water (using the manufacturer’s guidelines). Apply this to the coop ensuring you get it in the cracks and crevices, concentrating where there are perch ends and concentrations of red mite. Leave for 15-20 minutes.

 

3) High pressure hose

Use a hose (preferably high pressure) to hose down the coop and the parts. Try to get in every nook and cranny as this is where the mites like to live. Leave for 10-15 minutes to dry. After this you will most probably see more mites, which have been disturbed, crawling out. Repeat this process until there are very few mites emerging after each wash.

 

4) UV

Leave the house to thoroughly dry. It’s ideal to do the initial clean on a sunny day as the UV can kill some bacteria and will dry the house quicker. Put the coop back together and add bedding (dispose the old bedding in a plastic bag in a bin as the red mites will happily find somewhere else to live).

 

5) Red mite powder

Sprinkle the whole coop and your chickens with a red mite powder. Ensure you rub the powder onto the perches so any remaining mites will have to crawl through it to reach your chickens. Omlet stocks a large range of red mite powders and diatom powders to deal with red mite infestations.

 

6) Repeat red mite powder treatment

Re-apply the red mite powder every couple of days or when it has rubbed of. Red mite are only active during mild weather, so in the UK the red mite season usually falls between May and October. During the fall and winter, the mites become dormant and do not feed. But this doesn’t per se mean they are gone…

 

Sources: www.omlet.co.uk, www.poultryworld.net, www.accidentalsmallholder.net, www.wikivet.net, www.poultrykeeper.com

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides


Become a Course Host!

Running your own course is a fulfilling and rewarding way for you to share your hobby. Whether you keep chickens, rabbits, guinea pigs or another type of animal in your Eglu you can apply to set up your own course.

We like to encourage the best duty of care for animals therefore we encourage our more experienced customers to share their knowledge with new starters. Particularly when it comes to keeping chickens. In recent years backyard chicken keeping has massively increased in popularity although lots of people still don’t know how to get started or they’ve put off getting their own flock as they’re not too sure how much care and upkeep it entails. Whilst you can easily watch a Youtube clip or read blogs to get a better idea, nothing beats face to face and hands on teaching.

How much you charge for your course is entirely up to you, you need to analyse and value what you think your course is worth, for a 2 hour beginners guide to chicken keeping we would recommend charging $30 per attendee depending on what you provide the attendees with (refreshments, pamphlets, guidebooks, printouts.) Courses are booked through the Omlet website and you must have an Eglu to qualify to host a course.

The courses you host don’t have to be very long they could simply be an afternoon or evening, designed to appeal to a range of ages. We recommend offering a form of refreshments for your course attendees when they arrive, a really nice touch is to perhaps bake something using your farm fresh eggs to demonstrate how great they taste. We would then suggest telling your attendees a bit about your background story and how you got into chicken keeping and how it has affected your lives. Ideally the weather will be good so you can take your guests out to your Eglu coop to demonstrate how to use it.

You will then want explain the needs of chickens, their daily, weekly and monthly needs. How to care for chickens, what to look for if you think a chicken is poorly, different weather conditions and how to alter your chicken care, supplements, cleaning, how to store eggs etc.

Perhaps offer them the opportunity to ‘hug a hen’ and see what nice and friendly animals they are. A good way to round off your course is a Q and A session so people have the opportunity to ask you the questions the internet has not been able to answer for them. You don’t need to know the answer for all of them, it can become a discussion and all you can do is offer them your best advice from you experience and wisdom.

To apply to become a course host and receive more information either login or create an Omlet account here and then click on the Courses section of the portal. 

 

 

 

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides


Heading On A Roadtrip With Your Dog? Check Out These Top Tips….

  • It is always best to crate your dogs when travelling in a car so that they are secure and wont be at risk of injury if you break sharply or are involved in an accident. It also means they are not a distraction to you as the driver making it a much safer journey for everyone.
  • Make sure your dog is crate trained before you first want to take them on a trip. Some dogs find journeys stressful, you don’t want to increase this stress by putting them in a crate for the first time and then putting them in a moving vehicle.
  • A crate shouldn’t be used as a form of punishment, positive reinforcement will encourage your dogs to use the crate with ease. Never force them to go in their crate, leave the door open and let them go into the crate by themselves.
  • Make sure you take them on a long walk before you are heading off on a trip, this way you will tire out your pups and they will more likely want to rest once they’re in the car, this also prevents accidents happening.
  • That being said make sure you plan stops en route at least every 2 hours to allow them the opportunity to stretch their legs and go to the bathroom.
  • When you do stop, remember not to leave your dog in a parked car, you’d be surprised how quickly your car can become very hot and will leave your dog dehydrated which is potentially fatal, never risk it.
  • Make sure you have the right sized crate for your dog. Omlet Fido Classic Crates are available in 24, 30 and 36 inches, with optional accessories such as water bowls and beds.

  • It’s a nice idea to sometimes bring your dogs favourite blanket or toy to relax them and keep them calm.
  • Make sure your dog is microchipped before you set off, also carry a recent photo of them just in case you become separated.
  • Test the water with a few short drives prior to your big trip, get them used to the car and they should become less anxious.
  • Make a list of all your packing essentials such as the food/water bowl, wipes, waste bags, ID tags, collar, leash etc.
  • Feed them at least 3 hours before you intend on travelling to prevent them feeling sick, if it’s a very long journey feed them some light snacks when you stop for a break.

To view the full range of travel and home crates we have to offer, check out the Fido page here.

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides


Behind The Scenes of ‘How to Speak Chicken’

We recently received a copy of ‘How To Speak Chicken‘ by Melissa Caughey from Tilly’s Nest and we wanted to find out what inspired this unique and fascinating read. Melissa has kindly taken the time to explain what led her to write this book in our latest blogpost below:

 

“Never in a million years did I ever imagine myself keeping chickens nor did I ever think that I would write a book about chickens. Well, sometimes life takes you on some unexpected and surprising life changing journeys and for me and my family, keeping chickens was one of them. What started out as a way to provide free eggs for the family soon turned into a coop full of backyard pets.

 

It didn’t take long for me to realize that some chickens enjoyed spending time with me too. They would seek me out in the garden, dig in the same hole where I was planting a new flower and they would even come peek in the slider door as if to look for me to come out and play. I was enjoying their company as much as they were enjoying mine.

 

As I spent hours, days and now years watching them, I soon realized that chickens were more than just birdbrains. I wanted to figure out why they were doing certain things and what where they saying and eventually how their minds worked.

 

I guess it was that turning point that made me wonder, just like I had read books about understanding our dog, did such a book exist for chickens? There wasn’t a book, so I set off to write one. Writing the book was one of the best ways that I actually got to know my flock. I had plenty of “a-ha” moments during my research. I finally understood why my chickens were doing what they were doing and even saying what they were saying. Yes, I even delved into understanding their language and you know what, I have a chicken name and I bet you do too! Now I know my chickens definitely talk about me.

 

Writing How to Speak Chicken has allowed me to connect with so many chicken keepers across the globe and I’m here to share that no, you are not a crazy chicken lady or gentleman. What you think is happening might turn out to be true.  As it turns out, chickens are quite smart.”

 

Melissa Caughey is the author of How to Speak Chicken and A Kid’s Guide to Keeping Chickens. She is a backyard chicken keeper, beekeeper, and gardener who writes the award-winning blog Tilly’s Nest. Caughey writes for HGTV, DIY Network, and Grit, Chickens, Community Chickens, and Country Living magazines, and she presents on chicken keeping at events across the country. She lives on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

How to Speak Chicken is available to purchase on Amazon, just click here.

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides


Vets Advice: How To Keep Your Hens Happy This Winter

We recently got the chance to speak with Frau Dr. Sewerin, a German Vet who specialises in poultry. We asked her what her top tips were for keeping your hens happy in colder conditions, here’s what she had to say:

“Make sure the water does not freeze. To do this, place a thick, well-insulated bowl of warm water in a sheltered place, change the water on regular basis or get a water heater.

You should also make sure that there is a dry, snow-free place in the run. You can regularly mix leaves with some wheat grains so that the animals have something to pick. A dry corner with sandbathing possibility must not be missing. Different perching options should always be available during the day anyway, but especially in winter: this helps keeping their feet warm!

Depending on the circumstances, a windcover should be installed at chicken height so that the animals are somewhat protected. You can easily turn the Eglu run into a sheltered, snow-free area. There is are a range of weather protection covers available at Omlet or you could use simple greenhouse film, combined with bubble wrap. This way the run will be a few degrees warmer and windproof on the inside.

In order to help the chickens saving energy and make it a little bit more comfortable for them, you can get an extreme weather jacket for Eglu coops or use tinfoil as it can be found in emergency blankets. The dropping tray can be additionally insulated with an extra thick layer of straw or newspaper. But after all the easiest way is to use the Omlet extreme weather jackets which makes sure that there’s still a good insulation on the inside of the coop.

Pay special attention to the inside of the coop, because the exhalations of the excretions will otherwise accumulate quickly in the interior and irritate the respiratory tract. Good ventilation is also important to remove the humidity, so that the animals do not catch a cold.

A few extra vitamins in the form of fruits, vegetables and herbs can help the immune system. Also onions, garlic and leeks shredded with vegetables or mixed with “flavor enhancers” such as oatmeal, grated carrots, yogurt and oil are very popular.

Now is the ideal time to do a worming cure. If chickens are heavily infested with worms, it weakens them very much.”

If you’re thinking of upgrading your coop, now is the best time to do so.  Here are some of the top benefits of having an Eglu plastic chicken coop vs a wooden one, particularly in winter:

  • Eglu chicken coops and rabbit hutches do not absorb water so they don’t get heavy and remain easy to move.
  • They don’t rot and don’t require painting with varnish or wood stains (also means that you don’t have to move pets out whilst you are waiting for the fumes to go.)
  • They have insulation built in so remain warm.
  • They have draft free ventilation so your pets wont get a nasty chilly breeze coming in.
  • The door locks are made from heavy duty steel and wont break even in the freezing weather.
  • The door handles are all made from plastic so your fingers won’t freeze to them.
  • The door handles are nice and big so you can use them with gloves on.
  • The water container is really quick to lift out so you can take it in at night to prevent it from freezing.

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides


Rescuing Draco, Kona and Gunny from Hurricane Harvey

We recently received a donation request for one of our Fido Studio Dog Crates as a comfortable den for these poor pups who had to be rescued from Hurricane Harvey. We spoke to Draco, Kona and Gunny’s new owner to find out a bit more about these adorable dogs and the adoption process.

How and why did you rescue these puppies?

I rescued 3 pups from Hurricane Harvey, the pups were from a breeder who was discounting them like they were a defective item that was taking up space. I knew right there and then that these dogs deserved better. I asked the breeder rather than abandon them, how could I get all three transferred to Maryland and give these dogs a fighting shot when the one they trusted had abandoned them.

What was the rescue process?

I paid for 2 separate flights and had to pay a fee for the breeder to surrender the pups to me, between flights and fees it came to over $2500 dollars.  I could have easily adopted a puppy local and saved money but I’m from a military background and felt that protecting and standing up for what was wrong was in my nature. I knew the potential he just didn’t see in these dogs, so I spent my savings to help them without hesitation.

Is this the first time you’ve rescued a dog?

Yes this was my first time, I had no clue what I was signing up for I knew I was ready for a puppy and I ended up with three, so three times the awesomeness right!? But Gunny is the one part of this fun filled adventure that I was not ready for. It was 6 days after the first two arrived that our Belgian at 9 weeks died suddenly. We don’t know why exactly but believe the stress of the hurricane, the flight and everything was just too much. It was devastating and Draco the Dutch Shepherd who he came with on the first flight knew something was up, I guess dogs just sense things. He went from bullying him the first 4 days to day 5 and 6 just lying near him watchful and uneasy. I know that in his final days he experienced love and family and what it means to be man’s best friend and I knew right then and there that the money was 100% worth it.  Then the 3rd  puppy arrived, Kona a Belgian and let me say he is amazing and a beautiful color, likes to think of himself as a poster boy model type.

How are the dogs getting on now?

Draco and Kona are doing  awesome I’m so happy I did this and so happy for companies like Omlet who feel the passion I do.

Would you recommend doing this to others?

With no hesitation, yes! Adopt, rescue, do anything to help an animal in need.  One persons experience of an animal can be a treasure and life long bond. Animals deserve the best and I think we need more people to see the potential in animals not look at their flaws but know their journey and see a vision for them and create it.

Which services would you recommend?

Training , socialize them and shower them with positive reinforcement and love. I’ve got the love and the positive spirit but we have a long road ahead but I’m ready to get these pups to the max potential of what they can be these are working k9’s so they will need to have working ability so I’m in the hunt locally to find someone we can grow these pups to be awesome with but most places only offer it at the working level for 10-15 thousand dollars or I must have a medical condition that would allow them to use a grant to train them to their best potential so because I’m a veteran with no condition I don’t qualify.

What’s particularly important when rescuing a dog?

I think it’s important to know their story but don’t let that be how you view them, don’t look for what’s wrong, focus on what’s right and use that as your driver. I think you need to create a space that allows them to feel like they are a part of the pack and become that strong compass to guide them and be the leader but be the friend first and build the bond and trust and that will carry you to endless possibilities. I’m ready for where this takes us and can’t wait to update you guys as these pups grow.

I want to let everyone know that if I knew where the first month would have taken us, I would do it over again even knowing our Belgian Gunny would pass, I would not trade those 6 days of joy with him for anything. We will miss him!

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides


Tips For Raising a Yorkie

With their small bodies, high energy levels and beautiful fur, Yorkies are a breed which is highly sought after. While you may be tempted to go out and rescue or adopt one right now, there are a few things that you need to know first. Below are some tips for raising a Yorkie that will come in handy.

Potential Health Problems

As with many purebred dogs, Yorkies have a tendency to develop quite a few health problems including hypoglycemia, luxating patella (kneecap dislocation) and reverse sneezing. There’s no guarantee that your Yorkie will develop these issues, but it’s best to keep an eye out and take them to the vet regularly for check-ups.

Another great thing about Yorkies is that they are incredibly intelligent and can be trained quite quickly as long as you are consistent with the training. They happen to be one of the smartest dog breeds out there so if you’re looking for one that catches on quickly, a Yorkie is definitely for you.

Part of the training should include socialization and teaching them how to walk on a leash. Taking your Yorkie on daily walks also helps them (and you) stay healthy.

Yorkie’s diet

Because of their high energy levels, it’s important that you take care of their dietary needs properly. Yorkies need a diet that’s high in protein and carbohydrates so they don’t burn off their energy too quickly and fall into a funk. Small, energetic dogs tend to have high metabolism, so they burn off their food energy fast.

As far as feeding regimens, it’s best to follow the label on your bag (or can) of dog food. You will want to feed your Yorkie more often during their puppy phase because they can develop hypoglycemia if their blood sugar gets too low. If you wait too long between meals when they are a puppy this can cause issues. For more information on Yorkie’s diets you can read this article.

While Yorkie’s may be a bit of work to raise, the love and affection they give in return are priceless. Yorkies are dogs that will love you and be incredibly loyal to you until the end of their days. Once you have gained a Yorkie’s trust, you will have it for life and there is no better companion to have by your side than this lovable breed!

 

Words courtesy of http://www.thebarkbuzz.com/

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides


4th July Pet Prep #FireworkSafety

4th-july-infographic-v16

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides


Omlet US Tour!

map-blog-final-1

We’re very excited to announce that Omlet USA are heading out on the road to show our products at a variety of County Fairs and Agricultural Shows. Please see below a list of the shows we will be appearing at and for tickets or more info about each show please click on the links. We’ll have a variety of different products on display at each show and maybe even a few special discounts…..

Look forward to seeing you soon!

  1. Americas Family Pet Expo, 28-30 April, Costa Mesa, CA http://www.petexpooc.org/
  2. Mother Earth News Fair, 6-7 May, Asheville, NC http://www.motherearthnewsfair.com/north-carolina/
  3. Tour d’Coop, 20 May, Raleigh, NC http://tourdcoop.com/
  4. Mother Earth News Fair, 10-11 June, Burlington, VT http://www.motherearthnewsfair.com/vermont/
  5. Sonoma-Marin Fair, 21-25 June, Petaluma, CA http://www.sonoma-marinfair.org/
  6. Mother Earth News Fair, 5-6 August, Albany, OR http://www.motherearthnewsfair.com/oregon/
  7. Dutchess County Fair, 22-27 August, Rhinebeck, NY http://dutchessfair.com/
  8. Columbia County Fair, 30 Aug-4 Sept, Chatham, NY http://www.columbiafair.com/index.php
  9. Mother Earth News Fair, 15-17 Sept, Seven Springs, PA http://www.motherearthnewsfair.com/pennsylvania/

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Competitions


Crate Training Your Dog from The Bark Buzz

Did you just get a new puppy who is learning the rules of the house? Maybe your dog has behavioral problems, such as chewing on shoes or furniture. Or maybe you just want an easier way to travel with your dog. If you’re in any of these situations, crate training your dog might be the best option.

Crate training can be a controversial topic, but if we look at how dogs live in the wild, we realize it is a natural method to keep your dog comfortable and calm. Dogs are naturally den animals, which means that they feel comfortable in a small area they consider safe. A crate can simulate that for your dog.

A couple of other things to consider:
Never use a crate as a form of punishment.
Pay attention to your dog’s reaction to the crate- some dogs are more averse to crates, especially rescue dogs or any dog that spent a lot of time in a cage as a puppy.
Make sure you choose a crate that is properly sized for your dog. You can buy a larger crate that your dog can grow into, just block off a section of it until your dog grows.

Below you will find a guide to crate training your dog the proper way. As with any type of training, never force your dog to do anything they are visibly uncomfortable with. Treat this as another way to bond with your dog!

How to Crate Train your Dog
Courtesy of: TheBarkBuzz

No comments yet - Leave a comment

This entry was posted in Guides