Keep your pets safe this season: 6 Pet Spring Safety Tips

Spring seems to be finally arriving, and with it comes many potential dangers to your pets that as a pet owner, you need to know about. Here are 5 big things to look out for as the season changes to keep your pets safe.

Temperatures: We’ve had a strange winter with temperatures fluctuating day by day and week by week. Before taking your pet outside, check the wind chill and watch for signs your pet is getting too cold.

Melting Snow: Snow melting isn’t just about having puddles everywhere, there’s also the component of discovering what is underneath the snow. Squirrel nuts or bird feces that may have been dropped on your lawn in the fall have now had time to ferment and can be dangerous for your pets if ingested. Dogs tend to travel with their noses, so be diligent watching your pet when going for walks so they don’t ingest litter, cigarette butts, or anything else not yet cleaned up from the winter.

Salt Overload: Even if it’s been awhile since the roads were salted near you, if they had been heavily salted there is residue left behind in the sand, gravel, and puddles on your street. Salt acts as a local irritant, and when it dries, can irritate your pet enough to lick it off. This causes the threat of a dangerous amount of salt intake. Salt is a poison in large quantities and can cause problems for your pet. To avoid this, rinse your pet’s paws in a basin of warm water when you come inside after a walk, this will help remove any salt residue.

Spring plants: During the spring, soil is moist and fragrant and this can attract pets to eat things they find there! Plants with like Tulips and Lilies, or any with bulbs can be everything from a mild stomach irritant all the way up to a really strong toxin. For a list of poisonous plants and flowers, visit the Ontario SPCA factsheets. Some people are also putting down early fertilizer, which when ingested can be poisonous as well to your pets.

Fleas: Flea season is pretty much year round now because there isn’t heavy enough freezing for them to die off. The warm weather that comes from Spring allows flea eggs to start hatching, which can cause problems for your pet. Be aware and prepared for this issue to affect your pets.

Active Wildlife: With the change of season comes an awakening of wildlife. Spring is mating season, so within a few months litters will start being born. When walking at night, be vigilant in watching for skunks, and raccoons, and other wildlife common in your area.

For more tips on Spring and taking care of your pet, check out the Ontario SPCA factsheets.Happy Spring!

Categories:Guest Post, Kijiji Pets

How to Turn a Basement into a Homey Hideaway

Whether you are looking for basement ideas for finishing your own family room, setting up an income basement apartment suite you can rent out, or setting up your own basement apartment, the challenges are the same. The basement space is one of the most challenging parts of a home to make feel inviting. They typically suffer from a lack of natural light, low ceilings, and less air flow than most would like. Luckily, there are ways to make this space not only livable, but desirable and inviting. Whether you are fully remodeling, looking for ideas to make a small basement space into a getaway, or trying to transform a basement apartment into a space that will attract a high quality tenant, you have lots of options to take any basement space from drab to fab.

Fake it til you make it. Is your basement room windowless? Whether it’s lacking entirely in windows (or just lacking a good one), don’t despair – you can fake it. This tutorial shows a creative way to make a basement room feel bright through faking a window.

Fake Window With LED Grow Lights

Finished Product from This Tutorial on IMGUR

Create height. Are your ceilings low? Floor length curtains (typically curtains that are 96” or 108” will be floor length, but measure your ceilings to be sure) will lengthen the look of your room. Be sure to select a sheer or semi-sheer curtain if putting it in front of a natural light source. Stay away from heavy fabrics that will shut out light entirely. If your window is in a high traffic area, and you need to obscure it for privacy reasons, consider an unconventional window treatment for privacy rather than curtains or blinds that will block out the light more than is necessary. This tutorial shows how you can create privacy without losing much in the way of light (that is easy to remove if you are renting).

Add some green. Dark rooms, especially in a basement, can feel lifeless. Nothing livens up a room quite like plants. They clear the air, and make a space come alive. It can be hard to have plants in a basement, but luckily, there are several options that thrive in the dark. If none of these options are to your liking, or if you don’t have enough natural light to grow plants, consider adding a grow light to add more options. Some ideas for your basement abode (or any dark space):


Peace lily thrives in low light, and makes a dramatic statement. If you have pets or children who might nibble plants, this one is toxic.
Snake Plant

Snake Plant via The Sill


The snake plant does great in the relative dark, though is also somewhat toxic (but not particularly appealing to chew on, as it has a very woody texture).
Spider Plant

Spider Plant via homedit.com


The spider plant can tolerate low light, and when happy, will produce many “babies”. Spider plants are a great choice to hang near a window.
ZZ Plant

ZZ Plant via Gear Patrol


ZZ plant thrives in the dark, and makes a stylish but low maintenance house plant. All parts of this plant are toxic, and hands should be washed after handling it.

Keep it light. Choose a light paint colour, but don’t create an entirely white space – be sure to add some contrast and visual interest so the space doesn’t seem institutional or boring.

Play with lighting. Create defined spaces with multiple light sources from different angles. Having some floor lamps, table lamps, or candles (real or otherwise) makes a space feel much cozier than if your overhead lighting is all you use.

Contemporary basement bar lighting

This contemporary basement bar uses lighting to define a space. See more at Decoist.


Create a focus. It could be a dramatic piece of art, a mantle, contrasting colours, or some interesting wall paper. If the room has a clear feature to work with (like an exposed brick wall or other visually interesting details), go with it; if not, figure out where the focus in the room should be, and draw the eye in. This could be as simple as some interesting throw pillows, or as elaborate as the fake window above.

Stay away from carpets and rugs. If you are installing a new floor, choose something that will reflect the light. Hardwood is an ideal choice, but this is not always possible in basements. Consider painting a concrete floor with a semi-glass paint, or buffing the floor if you can. Carpets, though warm and inviting, will make a basement space seem smaller (and if your basement is at all damp or prone to flooding, they can get very musky).

Reflect & refract. Add mirrors to make the most of any natural light you might have. Hang mirrors opposite any windows or doors that let light in, or use mirrored tiles to create a cool modern look. If you have a deep window well, you could also experiment with mirrors or mirrored art objects that will catch the light and refract it in in unexpected ways.

Banish clutter. Find storage solutions like armoires and storage chests to keep any knick knacks out of sight – or even better yet, sell them on Kijiji!

Let the sun in. Clear out plants and objects outside in front of windows. It seems like a no-brainer…but if your windows are being blocked by hedges, flower beds, or a fence, clear it out if you can. It will make a big difference to the total amount of light you receive.

Spring is finally here. Time to Fix Your Pet!

Spring finally feels like it’s approaching; the sun is out, wildlife is waking up and animals are preparing for the spring season of love. You know what that means? It’s time to Fix Your Pet!

March is Fix Your Pet Month at the Ontario SPCA – A time dedicated to educating the public about the importance of spaying/neutering their pets to help control pet overpopulation.

People are sometimes daunted by the price of a spay/neuter surgery, but it’s important to remember this one cost covers your pet for life and comes with so many benefits.

Here are 3 reasons why you should Fix Your Pet:

  1. Every year, thousands of animals are abandoned on the street or end up in shelters trying to find new homes.
  2. There are physical benefits for your pets, such as reducing the risk of developing certain cancers, infections and illnesses, reducing physical stress and improving behaviour, including less territorial marking, destructiveness and aggression.
  3. In 2014, Ontario SPCA Animal Centres saw a reduction in cat-intake of 19% with some centres reporting a reduction of 40-50%, directly as a result of more spay/neuter surgeries in the province.

#ConeOfFame Post-surgery cat

Help us celebrate spay/neuter this month by taking the pledge on fixyourpet.ca to say you have or will be fixing your pet and be entered to win the Grand Prize. For a chance to win weekly prizes, enter our Cone of Fame Contest by posting a picture of your fixed pet in their cone on social media using the hashtag #ConeOfFame.

Looking for more information on the importance of fixing your pet? Check out our Animal’s Voice Pawdcast, “Ontario SPCA Spay/Neuter Services” on SoundCloud or  iTunes.

To learn more about the importance of having your pet spayed or neutered, visit fixyourpet.ca.

For more information on the Ontario SPCA’s High Volume Spay/Neuter Clinics, visit spayneuter.ontariospca.ca.

#ConeOfFame Post-surgery dog

Categories:Guest Post, Kijiji Pets

Spring Cleaning: How to make money and clean up!

What should you sell when spring cleaning?

What should you sell when spring cleaning?

Spring cleaning can be a daunting task to get through. Being able to sell your old stuff is a great motivator for getting through more stuff (and selling as much of it as possible). Here is our top list of things to look out for when you are doing your yearly purge.

Items with the tags still on (or still in their original box)
Items with the tags still on: sell them!
If the tag is still on, you clearly haven’t used it, and you could use that space for something better. Couple that with the fact that marking an item “New in box” (or NIB if you are down with the lingo), or “new with tags” (NWT) is more likely to result in your ads getting some attention or replies, and this one is a no-brainer. If you haven’t used it, sell it, and spend that cash on something you will use.

Gifts that you never liked in the first place
Gifts you never liked: sell them!
If you don’t like it, why is it still in your house? Sell it and make space for something you do like. We won’t tell Aunt Mable that the duck-themed tablecloth she was so proud of has found a more loving home if you don’t. Clutter that you just don’t care for should not take up space in your home (or your life). If you never liked it, you probably didn’t use it too heavily either, which will be a selling point to someone who does like it.

Things that clash with the rest of your décor
Things that clash: sell them!
Mix-matched or eclectic décor is one thing, but sometimes, there is something that just doesn’t belong. Maybe you love it, maybe you hate it, but maybe, you are just plain used to it. It could be anything from a too-large sideboard throwing off the scale of your room, to an antique Duncan Phyfe table that just doesn’t go with your modern couch and console table, to a space-age sputnik lamp throwing off the balance of your otherwise Victorian home. Do yourself (and someone else) a favor, and find the item a home where it belongs.

Stuff you haven’t touched in months.
With the exception of seasonal items, if you haven’t touched it in the past 4 months, you probably don’t need to hold on to it. It is collecting dust and taking up space, so do you really want to hold onto it?

Clothes that don’t fit
Clothes that don't fit: sell them!
With a few exceptions (kids who will grow into things, pregnant women who are fluctuating sizes), there really isn’t a reason to keep clothing that doesn’t fit or flatter you. If you try it on, and it looks bad, or doesn’t fit right, it probably isn’t doing your self-esteem any favors. Post an ad on Kijiji and find a new home for the clothes you loved years ago, and let someone else love them in the present tense.

Items you are being overly sentimental about
Everyone has different levels of sentimentality, and it can be hard to let go of memories. Ask yourself: why am I so attached to this item? What memories are associated with it? Are there other items with a similar association I am more attached to? Try to determine which item you are most attached to, and find new homes for the extras. Focus your sentimentality on the favorite item, rather than diluting it among all the clutter. Identifying which mementos really hold special memories or make you happy will help you let go of the rest.

Things you have multiples of
Stuff you have multiples of: sell them!
Though there might be a few cases where there is a good reason to have more than 1 of a very similar item, this is generally a good category to find superfluous things. How many classical guitars does one person need? Is there a valid reason you have 4 slow cookers? When was the last time that more than 1 was used at a time? Just keep your favorites and cash in on the rest.

Admit it, when you read this list, certain items came to mind, didn’t they? Identifying which items need to be sold is half the battle. Start posting your ads today, and your home will be spic and span before you know it!

Top 8 Searched Categories by Women in 2015

We took a look back at the top searched categories by men in 2015, now it’s time to look at what women searched for in 2015.

 

8. Resumes

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To kick it off, the resume category comes in at #8!

 

7. Pets – Lost and Found

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It seems women on our site love to do good deeds, and spend quite a bit of time trying to reunite lost pets with their owners in their community.

 

6. Pets

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Women also love to browse the pets category on our site. Somehow, the magnetic power of cute puppies and kittens for adoption is compounded by being in close proximity and adoptability. We hear that looking at adoptable pets in your area is a great way to procrastinate, or waste time, or to occupy your restless brain at 3 AM…

 

5.  Services

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Can you guess which section of services was the most popular?  Weddings! Seems quite a few knots were tied with the aid of wedding services found on Kijiji, and frankly, we aren’t surprised. The usual suspects like venues, DJs, and caterers can be found easily, plus there are lots of options for those looking for something more unique.  Want a horse drawn wedding carriage? A bouncy castle for the kids? Whatever your vision, there is a good chance you can find it on Kijiji.

 

4. Community – Events

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Looks like we have a lot of social people on our site – female visitors spent quite a bit of time browsing what was happening in their local community.

 

3. Services – Childcare/Nanny

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Besides a lot of our users getting married last year, it also looks like there were quite a lot of babies – but we want to know why the men aren’t making these searches to the same extent! It takes two to tango, gentlemen.

 

2. Jobs

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Women spent lots of time looking at job listings in their area. Whether they are looking for something new for themselves or a family member, we can’t say (but we wouldn’t be surprised if moms are sending their teens a few hints about how to get some more pocket money).

 

1. Buy and Sell – Baby items

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Baby items were the most popular searched category on Kijiji in 2015 by women, and no surprise that they want to save money on them. Baby items are expensive! Finding gently used baby items rather than spending all your savings on brand new stuff that will be grown out of within weeks just makes financial sense.

 

 

Categories:Awesomesauce, Listicals