Preparing Your Pets for Disaster

Hello Yappers,

If you are reading this post, you probably consider your pet as an important member of your household. The devastating tornado that touched down in parts of North Texas this weekend, is a grim reminder of how important it is to be prepared for any emergency whether it is a tornado,fire, flood, hurricane, or terrorist attack.

I love pets and blogging about them, but my day job is as an Emergency Management Professional with a large telecommunications company. In other words, emergencies/disaster preparation is kind of my thing. Therefore, take it on authority when I say that you should have an emergency plan not only for yourself but for your pets.

Note: Facebook groups have been formed to reunite missing pets from the devastating tornados in Texas. Animal rescue groups are working closely with animal control to make these reunions happen.

Here are 5 ways to prepare for your pet’s safety during a disaster.

During a Disaster

  • Bring pets inside immediately. Have plenty of newspapers or waste pads on hand for sanitary reasons.
  • If possible, feed the pet canned or moist food so they will need less drinking water.
  • Place a notice outside in a visible area, advising what pets are in the house and where they are located. Provide a phone number where you or a contact can be reached as well as the name and number of your vet. Ideally, emergency decals should already be placed on your windows. These are window stickers that you place on the inside of the windows of your home that will tell emergency responders how many dogs or cats you have inside. You can get these decals at pet retailers such as Petco and PetsMart, your veterinarian office or you can order a free Pet Safety Pack from the ASPCA.
  • Keep in mind that normally quiet and friendly pets may become and or anxious during and emergency.

Go-Packs – If you travel or camp with your pet, you probably already have one of these but if not…Assemble a portable emergency pack for your pet that should include the following items:

  • Bottled water
  • Pet food/can opener
  • Medications
  • Recent veterinary records – these records should show that your pet is up to date on vaccinations and will also show any medical conditions or special needs that your pet may have.
  • Microchip information
  • Cat litter/pan
  • Food dishes
  • First aid kit
  • Photographs of you and your pet- this photo should have your information written somewhere on it.

Transport Options If you must evacuate, you are going to need a way to transport your pet. Make sure you have a secure pet carrier, leash or harness for your pet so that if it panics, it can’t escape. And of course, your pet should be mircrochipped and have identification tags securely attached it its collar or harness.

Shelter Options – Many hotels and public shelters do not allow pets. So, if you must evacuate, have alternative arrangements for your pet in place in advance of any emergency. Develop a buddy system with your neighbors, friends and relatives that will enable care for your pet while you are away.

No Alternative Shelter Options

Leaving your animals behind in a disaster situation can be dangerous for both your pet and emergency responders. However, if you MUST leave your pet at home you should take the following precautions:

NEVER LEAVE YOUR PET CHAINED OUTSIDE!! You can leave them loose inside a confined room (preferably a bathroom) with plenty of food and water.

Remove the toilet tank lid and raise the toilet seat to provide another alternative for water access (this option is probably not optimal for small breeds).

Take care and be safe,

T.K., YapTalk




Count Down to Xmas

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post.

Hello Yappers!

We hope everyone’s plans for the Holiday are coming along nicely.

We will be doing an official YapTalk Xmas count down with Bella and her new friend who’s visiting from the NorthPole – “Scout”

Over the next few days, Bella and Scout will be sharing and reviewing a few of our  favorite products and food for the small breed. These  products would make awesome Christmas gifts or stocking stuffer for Christmas or anytime of the year.

For Day 10 we want to spotlight the Dinky Dog Club H2O4K9 Stainless Steel Water Bottle for Dogs. This bowl is not only great looking and keeps water nice and cool for your dog while traveling. It is also small enough to fit inside of most doggie bags or front pockets of car seats. Order one for your dog today or shop for many other great small dog products at Dinky Dog Club.

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post.




Reporting for Duty: A Review

A few weeks ago, i-5 Publishing sent an advance, complimentary copy of Tracy Libby’s Reporting for Duty: True Stories of Wounded Veterans and Their Service Dogs.

In the book, Libby profiles the reliable and loyal service dogs who service veterans who suffer from a wide range of physical and emotional challenges. I must say, that I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I thought I was pretty well versed on the types of services and support that these dogs can provide until I read Reporting for Duty. I learned that service dogs not only provide support for veterans suffering from PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder but also from, Military Sexual Trauma (MST) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) as well as wide range of other service related afflictions.

Libby profiles 15 disabled veterans ranging from the WWII, Vietnam and the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. My favorite profile was that of Jason, who was deployed with the Marine Corps Special Forces Unit in support of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and his therapy dog, Buckles. Jason was injured by an improvised explosive device (IED) in 2003. The IED instantly ended his military career and Jason continues to suffer from physical injuries including: PTSD, organ damage and severe nerve damage. Jason was matched with his dog, Buckles, a Golden Retriever, in March 2015. Buckles helps Jason with everyday tasks like reminding him to take his medication, equilibrium issues, and keeping Jason calm during public outings.

The book also has chapters on: How Dogs Read Us, Prison Puppy Programs, The History of Therapy Dogs, Shelter dogs who have gone into service and much more.

Reporting for Duty is a great read and provides further proof that canines are man’s most valiant and loving companions.

For more info on how you can support the training and placement of service dogs to vets, please visit the Veterans Moving Forward website or call toll-free at: 866-375-1209.

True Stories of Wounded Veterans and Their Service Dogs
True Stories of Wounded Veterans and Their Service Dogs

Veteran’s Day 2015 Spotlight….

Happy Veterans Day Yappers,

We did not want to let this day pass without recognizing a very special non-profit to which YapTalk has a special history connection. Cedar Hill Pet Memorial Project Inc., brought the very first War Dog Monument to North Texas. The organization, is also responsible for saving a historic pet cemetery located in North Texas from being turned over to the city due to back property taxes back in 2011.

Enduring Valor_Ritland_CH PD

The park has come along way since that time. Last year, CHPMP Inc. celebrated another victory when it held a Dedication Event for the new War Dog Monument which is located at the Pet Memorial Park in Cedar Hill, TX. The event was a celebration of the unveiling and installation of the beautiful bronze statue named “Enduring Valor” (pictured below) created by California-based artist, Susan Bahary. The monument represents civic pride and provides a place for military and local law enforcement. The monument is also meant to honor that special bond between humans and dogs.

A promise made, a promise kept.
A promise made, a promise kept.

The Dedication Event was a huge victory and milestone for the park but there is still more work to be done. CHPMP Inc. is always accepting donations and volunteers.

To donate, volunteer or for more information about Cedar Hill Pet Memorial Project Inc., visit their website:
You can also Like CHPMP Inc. on Facebook or  follow them on Twitter & Pinterest @CHPMP

“Enduring Valor” – Created by California based artist, Susan Bahary
YapTalk's Bella, showing her support for our friends at CHPMP Inc.
YapTalk’s Bella, showing her support for our friends at CHPMP Inc.

Scenes From BarkWorld 2016

Last week, I got to travel to the city of Atlanta to attend BarkWorld 2016-an annual conference for pet influencers and pet industry reps. We had a blast meeting new furry and hooman friends and catching up with old ones. 

I have lots of info to share about some of the exciting products and information that will be posted real soon. In the meantime, I wanted to share some pics that I captured from those 4 wondedful days spent at #BarkWorld2016.

Until next time,



Songs to Calm Your Anxious Dog During Fireworks 

This time of the year can be dangerous for pets-specifically the July 4th celebrations with the fireworks. Many pet owners are desperate for ways to calm and soothe their frightened dogs during his time.

I was fortunate enough to attend BlogPaws 2016 in Phoenix Arizona last week. The attenedees received swag bags with all kinds of great stuff for dogs (and cats). One of the items was a sample CD of “Songs for Dogs and people who love them”called ‘The Ruff Cuts.’

Songs like ‘I’ll Always Come Back For You”  and “You’re a Good Dog” are all good songs and the lyrics are relatable and if you really love your little Yapper, you probably have said to them before. 

The songs are Veterinarian recommended and are perfect to play for your dog during anxious times like fireworks, separation anxiety or just when playing with or grooming your dog. 
‘The Ruff Cuts’ is available at iTunes, Amazon Music or Spotify. Download a copy today. Your dog will love it!

5 Last Minute Gift Ideas

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post.

With only a few shopping hours left until Christmas Day, the procrastinators among us may be sweating it out at this point. Procrastinators, no need to worry! YapTalk’s Bella (and her little Elf friend, Scout) are here to save the day with 5  last minute, practical  gift ideas for the little Yapper or dog lover in your life. Most of these can be found at PetsMart or wherever pet products are sold.

Special Promotion at PETsMART

Gift Idea #1

Pedigree DENTASTIX would make a great stocking stuffer and comes in Toy/Small Stix for the small breed dog.

Gift Idea #2 

Did you know that Martha Stewart makes some great pet products? Her products include everything from Dog (and cat) toys to food and water bowls. Sold exclusively at PetsMart

Gift Idea #3 

Nature’s Miracle is not so much a gift for your dog but can certainly be a gift for your family during the holidays. The specially formulated solution breaks down pet stains and odors.

Gift Idea #4 

Alpo Variety Snaps Little Bites are like cookies for dogs. They may not be the most nutritional treat but dogs love them and they are almost the perfect size for the small breed.

Gift Idea #5

We love that Royal Canin caters to the extra small and mini breeds. ROYAL CANIN X-SMALL dog food is formulated for dogs that weigh 8 pounds or less at adulthood, including the following small dog breeds: Japanese Chin, Maltese, Pomeranian, Papillion, Miniature Pinscher, Italian Greyhound, Manchester Terrier and Toy Fox Terrier.


Countdown to Xmas Day 2 

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post.

Only 1 shopping day left until Christmas! How about putting a little about a little Martha Stewart in your dog’s life?

Special Promotion at PETsMART


Martha Stewart Pets collections can be found exclusively at PetsMart. You can find wide array of quality made products from Dog bowls to harnesses. There are also items for the feline in your life. We love that Martha’s collections includes products for the small breeds.  This is why Martha Stewart’s Pet’s collection  is one of our favorite things and makes great last minute gifts for the little Yapper in your life.


Shop at

Countdown to Xmas: Day 3

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post.

These Purina Alpo Variety Snaps Little Bites are like cookies for little dogs. They may not be the most nutritious but it doesn’t hurt to indulge in moderation every once in awhile-right?  We stumbled upon this tasty treat on one of Bella’s play dates with her little friend “Jojo” Those two have to have their Little Bites break after every single play date; it’s become somewhat of a ritual. The only criticism that we have is that we wish they were a little smaller. Perhaps, Purina can create some Mini Bites for the Toy and Mini breed mouths.

These would make a great stocking stuffer for your little Yapper. Pick up a box today at PetsMart or wherever pet foods are sold.
Shop at

Countdown to Xmas: Day 5

We all know that our little dogs can be just as picky as cats when it comes to their nutritional needs but Bella loves her Royal Canin! This has been the only kibble that we’ve been able to keep her on for years without her getting tired of it. This is why ROYAL CANIN X-SMALL is on the list of Bella’s favorite things.

We love that Royal Canin caters to the extra small and mini breeds. ROYAL CANIN X-SMALL dog food is formulated for dogs that weigh 8 pounds or less at adulthood, including the following small dog breeds: Japanese Chin, Maltese, Pomeranian, Papillion, Miniature Pinscher, Italian Greyhound, Manchester Terrier and Toy Fox Terrier.

Bella, giving her new friend Scout the side eye. NO ONE comes between Bella and her Royal Canin!

Whether your dog is 2 or 200 pounds, Royal Canin has a dog food formula that is specially formulated for their unique needs. Pick up a bag today at PetsMart or wherever specialty dog food brands or sold.

Special Promotion at PETsMART





Countdown to Xmas: Day 6

YapTalk continues the countdown to Xmas with a few of our favorite things. Nature’s Miracle is an awesome product for people who live with pets. It is hands down one of the best pet stain products on the market. Natures Miracle uses a bio-enzymatic formula that specifically reacts to organic stains and odor matter and works to eliminate any traces—unlike other products that may simply mask stains and odors.

We are huge fans of this product. Pick up some today at PetsMart or where pet products or sold.

Shop at


We don't know about Bella but Scout loves Nature's Miracle!
We don’t know about Bella but Scout loves Nature’s Miracle!


Xmas Countdown: Day 7

Hello Yappers,

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. 

Small dogs like Yorkies often have problems with their teeth as they age.   This is why Dental Hygiene and preventative care is a must! Bella loves to keep her breath fresh and teeth cleaned in between, regular brushings, with PEDIGREE® DENTASTIX™ Original Treats for small dogs. DENTASTIX™ Original Treats are chewy, textured treats that are designed to promote oral health. They are X-shaped, stick-like snacks that deliver daily oral care efficacy, with a tasty original flavor. Their unique texture is clinically proven to reduce plaque and tartar buildup. Look for the patented X-shaped treat.  They also come in several different yummy flavors including: Original, Fresh, Beef and Bacon!

DENTASTIX™ Original Treats make excellent stocking stuffers for your little Yapper!

Pick up a pack today at PetsMart or wherever dog food and supplies are sold.