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Spring is here! Celebrate Earth Day on the 22nd with these tips to help your pet stay lean and green for seasons to come.

Garden Variety - If your pet loves to chew on garden greens, be careful that your freshly planted patch isn't full of hidden hazards. Onions, rhubarb and members of the nightshade family - tomatoes, eggplants and potatoes - can all send your pet on an unexpected spring trip to the hospital. Protect your pet by fencing off potentially dangerous plants or choosing less-toxic choices.

Furr-st Response - April is National Pet First Aid Awareness Month. You can't plan for unexpected accidents, but you can be prepared to deal with them when they arise. To stay ahead of emergencies, take a pet first aid and CPR class, keep a pet first aid kit at home and in your car (like one of these from Wag'N Enterprises), and protect your best friend with Petplan pet insurance.

Green is Good - Providing for your pet doesn't have to tax Mother Earth. Keep your pets happy and healthy while reducing their environmental impact by feeding natural, organic food, using biodegradable pet waste bags or litter and purchasing pet products made from recycled or sustainable materials. Keep a lookout for even more eco-friendly pet tips in our upcoming Green issue of fetch! magazine, due out in June.

Vets for Pets
(March blogs to boost your pet prowess!)

Thumbs Up! - To dew, or not to dew? That is the question that Kim Smyth, DVM discusses in this blog post on the debatable subject of dew claw removal. Learn how dogs and cats use these "thumbs" - and why removing them isn't always the best idea.

Aye, Chihuahua - There are few breeds as popular to celebrity starlets and families alike as the Chihuahua. Learn more about this proud Mexican dog breed and the medical issues Chihuahuas may face on the Petplan pet insurance blog.

Prescription for Disaster - Before you pop your pet his pills, check the expiration date. Giving your pets expired medications can lead to inadequate results. See which types of medication Dr. Smyth advises you keep an eye on in her blog post.

Vernon Hill - Wharton Interview - Petplan Chairman and Wharton alumnus Vernon Hill was recently interviewed for the Wharton Entrepreneurial Program about his experience in the banking industry, the keys to success and how he connected with Petplan CEOs and fellow Wharton alumni Chris and Natasha Ashton. Watch the interview here.

Fat Cats - Heavyset pets waddled into the spotlight when the Wall Street Journal recently spoke to Petplan Veterinary Advisory Board member and author of Chow Hounds, Dr. Ernie Ward, about pet obesity. Missed the morning newspaper? Check out the digital version of the article here.

fetch! some prizes - If you didn’t catch the News + Contests in the recent issue of fetch! magazine (Survival issue), we’re giving away two great gifts to lucky readers. The first is a Travel Safety Kit from Pet Portables™, which provides an all-in-one solution for your pet travel needs (and your peace of mind). The kit contains a collar/leash combo, collapsible bowl, scoop bags, ID card, basic first aid kit and more – all in a sturdy bag with a luggage tag. For a chance to win this handy travel companion, tell us how you keep your pets safe when you're on the go. The other prize we're giving away is Dr. Nancy Kay's book, Speaking for Spot: Be the Advocate Your Dog Needs to Live a Happy, Healthy, Longer Life. Tell us how your pet would express himself in words and you could be one of the five lucky readers to get a free copy!

Eye of the Tiger - Let kitty go wild with the 100% recyclable Tiger Cat Scratcher. Made from 30% recycled material, this convo-inspiring cat scratcher provides kitty with a fun place to claw and play.

Honestly Good - Looking for a sustainably delicious pet food? The Honest Kitchen uses only natural, human-grade ingredients in all of their food, treats and supplements. In addition, all of the company's products are packaged in a 100% recycled box printed with vegetable-based inks. Try their Keen Dog Food, which uses hormone-free, cage-free USDA turkey and healthy ingredients like potatoes and organic flax. You can enter to win a 4-pound box of Keen in the April Story Contest.

Snooze Don't Lose - Going green is fashionable (and more comfortable than riding in a purse) thanks to this Eco-Friendly Pet Tote from Snoozer. Designed for small breeds up to 10 pounds and made of recycled burlap for a secure yet comfy ride.

March Poll Results
What's your pet's favorite spring time activity?
Enjoying the new green scenery on walks: 39%
Getting down and dirty in mud puddles: 36%
Tearing up my newly planted flowerbeds: 25%

If you're happy and you know it - tell your friends! If they get a policy, you get a $25 Amex Card (and there's no limit to how many friends you tell)! >>click here<<

Fresh Air - Taking flight with Fido? According to the Climate Counts' Green Watching Campaign, Southwest Airlines soared above their competition when it comes to environmental initiatives, thanks to in-flight recycling programs and the Southwest Green Plane, which uses recyclable elements in the cabin interior and features reduced weight and fuel savings. Brush up on Southwest's pet policy before you book your next trip.

Two If By Land - What's a great way to cut down on carbon emissions produced by cars and get your best friend some healthy exercise? Go for a walk! Take a look at your daily travels; are any destinations within walking distance? If you're planning for a summer vacation for the whole family, are there places to walk or hike with pets? Making small changes can pay off big - not only for your pet's health, but for yours, as well.

Waste Away - An estimated 10 million tons of pet waste is produced each year, leading several cities to adopt laws requiring pet parents to pick up their pet's waste. It's a messy job, but an important one. Not only is picking up after your pet part of being a responsible pet parent, but it can protect your pet's health: canine parvovirus, a deadly disease spread through contact with infected feces, can survive in the ground for months.

Blood Brothers - Did you know that pets can donate blood? The need for donated blood has increased dramatically over the years to support pets with blood diseases like anemia and those requiring blood transfusions during critical care. Participating pets are often rewarded with free blood typing, blood screening and other great gifts, and the blood they donate can help save the lives of other best friends. Contact your local Red Cross chapter to register your pet for a blood drive or volunteer your time.

The Bond - As president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States, Wayne Pacelle has played a leading role in transforming The HSUS into a dynamic public force and voice for all animals. In his forthcoming book, The Bond: Our Kinship with Animals, due out April 5th, Pacelle reflects on our relationship with animals, the human-animal bond and what we can do to help improve the world for animals everywhere. Pick up your copy and don't miss our interview with Wayne Pacelle in the upcoming Green issue of fetch! magazine, due in homes and at booksellers such as Barnes and Noble and Hastings in late June 2011.

"A Green Tail"
Tell us what you and your pets do to help the planet for a chance to win a 4-pound box of dehydrated Keen Dog Food from The Honest Kitchen (makes 17 lbs of fresh food)!

March's "A Spring Tail" Contest Winner
"For me, the arrival of spring signifies the birthday of Hooligan, my Yellow Lab. (She was born April 8, 2009)!!!  For her first birthday, a large party with all of her canine friends was planned. The local pet resort was booked and pool-party favors, piata, cake, etc. all bought. Unfortunately for Hooligan, she was diagnosed with double hip dysplasia about a month before her first birthday party and ended up having to spend her birthday in recovery at the animal hospital. This year, thanks to great doctors and a great pet insurance company (Petplan), she will be able to celebrate her second birthday in style, and hopefully she will be able to do the same every springtime for the rest of her life."
- Kathy Korb, York, PA

The information contained in this website is for illustrative purposes only and coverage under any pet insurance policy is expressly subject to the conditions, restrictions, limitations, exclusions and terms of the policy documentation issued by the insurer. Availability of this program is subject to each state's approval and coverage may vary by state. Pet insurance policies are issued by AGCS Marine Insurance Company and administered by Fetch Insurance Services, LLC (Fetch Insurance Agency, LLC in Michigan), d/b/a Petplan (Petplan Insurance Agency, LLC in California). AGCS Marine Insurance Company, a member of the Allianz Group, is rated A+ by A.M. Best (2010).

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