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Archive for June, 2009

dog-bowl1Dogs that eat a diet of mostly dry food get thirsty more often. It is very important that your dog water bowl be kept full at all times. The amount of water that your dog will drink depends on many factors. How much exercise does he get? It he outside often?  The hotter it is and the more exercise that he gets, the more water he will drink. A word of caution, be very careful of where he is getting his water from. I say this because if he is drinking from the toilet, there are chemicals such as lye that he could consume and get sick. This is also true for cats. I have one cat that loves to drink from the toilet. I try to keep the lid down all the time! She still manages to get into the toilet  while I’m not looking!  I would also be cautious if your dog drinks from ponds or streams while he is outside. There may be elements in the water that may harm him.

Keep in mind that I tend to be on the “upper” end of the cautious scale. I don’t own a dog at this time but if I did, I would also be a little cautious of him drinking from bowls that store owners sometimes keep outside the stores. Not that I don’t trust the store owners but I don’t really trust the “passers by.”  Keep his water fresh and his bowl full at most times and you won’t have any problems.

friendscat-dog

It is possible to finally get rids of those annoying ticks on your pet and in your home. Did you know that just a few drops of flea and tick products can keep you and your pet free from fleas for months? New Flea and tick products require only a few drops on the back of your pets neck only once a month!  Dr Allen Paul, who is  a vet at the University of Illinois says that these products are the best way to prevent fleas and ticks. He says that they last long, are easy to apply and eliminate the need to clean up your pets environment. They are also cheaper because you treat the pet not your home.  If you notice that your pet is constantly scratching, there’s a good possibility that he has fleas.  Check out the flea and tick sprays and products that are on the market. The quicker you eliminate his discomfort, the better!

animal-general

Your pets liver is vital for metabolism and to get rid of toxic products. Did you know that up to ten percent of cats and dogs that go to the veterinarian have a liver problem. Dr. David Tweed, who is a veternarian at Colorado State University says that liver disease is not necessarily age related. There are some types of liver disease that can occur in older animals but liver disease can occur at any age.  If you notice a yellow tint around your pets nose or eyes, take her to the veterinarian. Some other symptoms can include loss of appetite or vitality. It is always important to remember, never try to self diagnose your pet or administer any pet medication that is not prescribed by your vet. Your vet is the only person who knows what’s best for a sick pet.

dog6There are many opinions as to whether chewing rawhide bones are good or bad for you dog. Rawhide consists of the inner layer of hide that is usually from a cow. Many people give their dogs rawhide to chew in order to keep them occupied and to protect their teeth.  Dogs have the natural instinct to chew and rawhide helps to stimulate this instinct.  Make sure that your dog cannot swallow a large piece of rawhide. This can make your dog ill and will affect his digestive system by causing vomiting or diarrhea.

If you offer rawhide to your dog, give it to him in limited quantities. Make sure that you throw away uneaten pieces. If you give your dog rawhide pieces that are pressed and glued together with a gelatin base, watch for any bad reaction. Call your Vet immediately if you notice any reaction.

Choose rawhide that are made in the United States and make sure that the size fits your dog. Small pieces may cause a large dog to choke.

The better brands of rawhide bones are more expensive but well worth the price. You may want to consider an alternative to rawhide bones. There are many varieties of vegetable and meat flavored bones that are available at your pet store. It’s a good idea to offer your dog a variety of “chewables.”

Millie, the cat who won't even consider her pet carrier!

Millie, the cat who won't even consider her pet carrier!

I have a cat, who gets tramatized when she sees her pet carrier. I’ve done everything from leaving it out and open in the house, I would put treats inside and a soft blanket but no use, she will not even consider it! I frequently travel 4 hours to Delaware for the weekends and don’t want to leave her at home. I usually bring her bed, put it on the back seat and have her lie in it without the pet carrier. This is not only dangerous for me, the driver who keeps looking back to see that she is OK but it’s dangerous for my cat who is not at all secure in the event of even a minor collision!

Here is a method that might work for you.

Cats associate the carrier with a change of routine and so you must be very careful and try to outsmart them. Don’t bring the pet carrier out right before the trip. Bring the carrier out a day or two before you are leaving on your trip. Place a blanket, a snack and even some catnip inside which might entice them to investigate it. Cats hate being shoved in their carrier with the door slammed shut. If you see your cat go in on her own, close the door for a minute or two then open it again. This sometimes makes your trip a little easier – that’s if your cat isn’t like my cat Millie. Coming soon car sickness – what to do.

raven_smThere are several clues to look for to determine if your pet has a heart problem. They seem to slow down and can’t play or exercise anymore. Dr. Andrew Lowell  is a Veterinarian at the Pender Veterinary Clinic in Fairfax, Virginia . He says that pets and humans have common heart symptoms. If humans feel lethargic,  tire frequently and can’t run anymore, this can be an indicator that there is  a heart problem.

Heavy breathing and continual fatigue are signals that your pet needs to go to the Vet and get checked out. Frequently, heart problems can be controlled with the proper pet medication.  My pet began coughing. At first I thought that he had something stuck in his throat so I looked and didn’t feel anything. The coughing stopped but started up again periodically. My pet also became less active than usual. When I took him to the Vet, it was determined that he had a serious heart problem. I had several prescription pet medications that I had to administer several times a day. This prolonged his life for almost a year.

Make sure that you understand your Vets instructions when it comes to administering your pets medication.  This is extremely important especially if you have several different medications to administer.

The bottom line is  do not hesitate to call your vet as soon as you notice any change in your pets normal behavior.

Home Ownership and Dog Ownership

Thursday, June 18, 2009
posted by PetsRule

dogboots

A lot of people take a lot of pride in keeping their homes spotless. Whether they scrub and work themselves or they hire somebody to clean the house, some people simply place a lot of stock in the appearance of their homes both inside and outside. If that’s the case, you might be reluctant to indulge in a dog. Dogs, after all, are notoriously messy. Especially if you want a big dog, you have to deal with excessive shedding, mud being dragged all over your furniture, and long nails scratching up the floors.

But it’s not impossible to achieve an immaculate home and be a proud pet owner. If you’re particularly concerned about your newly done and perfect hardwood floors, just invest in a simple pair of dog boots. These soft padded boots are the perfect way to allow your dog free reign of the kitchen without causing any lasting damage. Many of these slippers even have non-slip bottoms, so you don’t have to worry about your dog hurting himself by slipping on the slick surface.

Dog Exercise Pen

Tuesday, June 16, 2009
posted by Jim Murphy

dog2

Dog exercise pens are a great way to manage your dogs environment. They can be used when you’re at home but not available to give your dog attention. They are also great when house breaking a new puppy.

A Dog exercise pen is also very useful if you take your pet on vacation with you. You can use the pen in pet friendly motels to keep your dog in one place and to prevent him for lifting his leg on the hotel rooms furniture. Dogs frequently have “accidents” when in unfamiliar places.

Here are some things to consider when using an exercise pen.

– A pen is a good way to manage your dogs environment but should never be used to keep your pet in the     majority of the time.

-Don’t leave your dog alone in the pen until he feels comfortable.

-It’s also good idea to feed your dog in his pen.

-Do not leave your dog in his pen at night if he was in there all day.

-Leave enough water in the pen if your dog is unsupervised.

-Leave some soft blankets and toys in the pen for your pet.

hartzflea16-30_thumbIs your cat or dog scratching constantly? It’s probably fleas. You can’t get away from them. Fleas are insects that are found all over the word. They are parasitic and feed of the blood of dogs, cats and even humans! Fleas can also infect other animals including Raccoons and Weasels. Rat fleas were the cause of the Bubonic plague.

The fleas that infect cats or dogs are one of two species  Ctenocephalides felis is the cat flea. Ctenocephalides canis is the dog flea. Both of these fleas can infect humans. Fleas can get in your carpet, car, bedding, anywhere. Fleas go through four stages of life.  The last phase or adult phase is the one seen on dogs and cats. Fleas are a reddish brown in color and are about 1/16th t o1/8th of an inch in length. They do not fly but rather jump from place to place. They have three pairs on legs. One pair is quite large and is used for jumping. They have a hard shiny coat which enables them to move through animals fur.

Make sure that you keep a Flea and Tick Spray on hand all the time. Your pet can get fleas anytime of year. Use the Flea and Tick Spray on your pet regularly. If your pet continues to scratch, see your Vet. The problem may be something other than fleas.

Cat Scratching Posts

Friday, June 12, 2009
posted by Jim Murphy

cat-accessories3It is natural for cats to sharpen their claws but I’m sure that you don’t want your cat to do his sharpening on your good chair or sofa. Did you know that cats have scent glands in their claws?  They use their paws to mark their territory and of course use them for protecting themselves if they are outside. Sharpening their nails is also enjoyable to your pet.

If you are like me and believe that to declaw your cat is extremely painful and something that you would not consider doing, you probably will ask yourself  “how can I keep him from scratching the furniture?” Unfortunately you can’t. You can divert his attention by buying him a cat scratching post. I recommend buying several of them and placing them in various locations throughout your home.  Your can also consider a scratch box with catnip in it. If your are very resourceful, you can make your own scratching post.

Your cat will now have his own places to scratch and you will save your beautiful furniture from ruin. Remember, your cat will need to be corrected several times until he gets used to using the scratching post.

Cat scratching posts normally cost from about $15 – $120 depending on the size and quality you buy.