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Archive for January, 2010

sad-catYou’re in the animal shelter a your heart goes out to a sick kitty that you see staring at you. You decide to take him home. You are really doing this little guy a favor but you could be endangering your other pets.  Make sure that you take appropriate precautions. First, you must make sure that all of your pets are properly vaccinated.  Then when you get home, do not allow the cat to share the same dishes, cat toys or litter boxes. The best thing to do is to keep the sick cat isolated from your other pets. It will not only protect your other animals but will minimize stress for the sick kitty while she heals.  Get the kitty to your vet and ask about how the sickness that your new kitty has may be transmitted. He or she will be able to provide you with any additional precautions.

cat-with-toysI must admit, I really did spoil my older cat Mollie. When she was very young, she would cry every night about 4:00am. I would have to get up and give her a can of wet food. Now she is 10 1/2 and still wants that food at around 4:00am. She will do anything to get me out of bed. One night, I was abruptly awakened to a symphony in my apartment. The music quickly reached earth shattering levels. I quickly jumped up and realized that Mollie had turned on the Bose wave radio on that sits on my nightstand! As I scrambled to turn it off before the police were at my door, Mollie just sat there and stared at me. She wanted her food and would do anything to get it. This continued night after night. Luckily the neighbors didn’t report me to the Condo board. One night, I was awake before Mollie got to the radio. I wanted to see how she did it. I kept my eye half open and sure enough at 4:00am she got on the nightstand, looked at me, looked at the Bose radio, looked at me again (I pretended that I was asleep) and quickly put her paw on the “on” button and turned the radio on. To my amazement, she then hit the volume button and kept her paw there until the volume reached an earth shattering level. Even though both buttons are located at the top of the radio, my cat knew exactly what to do to not only turn the radio on but to increase the volume. To make a long story short, I unplugged the Bose and it now is stuffed under my bed. Mollie wins again!

My younger cat Millie, likes to play all the time. She is determined to get me to play with her fishing  pole cat toy. She will drag it out and drop it where ever I am. That’s a hint that it’s time to play with Millie. Never underestimate the intelligence of your cat!

outdoor-catCats may be predators but if your cat is an outdoor cat, it can quickly become prey. Bobcats, mountain lions, cayotes, foxes, raccoons and free roaming dogs all contribute to feline mortality. Large owls and hawks can consider cats fair game. If you live in Florida, crocodiles and alligators could put your cat in danger. Outdoor cats often suffer scratched eyes, torn ears and other injuries.  Young, old and cats that have been de-clawed are especially vulnerable. If your cat fights with a rabbit,bat, fox or rat, she could acquire rabies.  Bites and scratches from wild animals can transmit other potentially fatal diseases as well. There’s no way to cat proof the great outdoors. Indoor cats live three times longer than outdoor cats.  So buy some cat toys, a comfy cat bed and consider keeping your cat indoors. I would do it all the time but if your cat must go out, don’t let her out at night.

Cat Scratch Fever

Friday, January 29, 2010
posted by PetsRule

cat-scratchingAnyone that has a cat is probably familiar with frayed couch corners, torn-up blinds and shredded carpets; these are all a result of a cat’s scratching. And, if you’re cat’s scratching is annoying you, don’t think you can change the behavior–because you can’t. Scratching is a natural behavior for cats and we all know cats aren’t the best at taking orders. But, what you can do is attempt to control where your cat scratches.

Cats don’t understand physical punishment, so hitting your cat when she scratches is one of the worst things you can do. Cats also have good memories and though they won’t associate you hitting them with their scratching behavior, they will remember that you hurt them and hold a grudge.

Cats scratch for many reasons including; marking their territory, exercise and because it simply feels good. The best option in preventing kitty from shredding your most prized possessions is to provide her with her own cat scratching post. Cats prefer scratching on rough surfaces, so picking a post made of wood is the best option. Also, make sure the post is tall enough so that your cat can stretch to her full height. Lastly, make sure the cat scratching posts are stable and cannot easily be tipped over.

sleeping-cat-and-dogA twitching cat or dog that is  dreaming about chasing a rabbit in their sleep is a common sight if you’re a pet owner. Like children, our pets dream, talk in their sleep and even wet their beds. They can also have more serious sleep disorders. Narcolepsy is disease that causes sudden, excessive sleepiness. Researchers have isolated the narcolepsy gene in Doberman Pinschers and Labrador Retrievers. Sleep Apnea often affects Bull dogs and Persian cats. Symptoms include loud snoring and/or interrupted breathing and gasping during sleep.  If these conditions are left untreated, the consequences can be serious. See your veterinarian if you suspect problems. Do not attempt to administer any kind of pet medication on your own. Your vet will make the proper diagnosis and insure sweet dreams for your pet.

dog-and-cat-on-computerIf you are thinking of adopting a dog or puppy and have children, you want to make sure that the dog breed that you choose is good around children. Some dogs like the Labrador retriever are very good around children while some breeds are not. Here is a list to guide you in making that all important decision. So before you buy his dog carrier and other accessories, take a look at this list.

Excellent with Kids

  • Golden Retriever
  • Greyhound
  • Labrador Retriever
  • Newfoundland
  • Saint Bernard

Good with Kids

  • Basset Hound
  • Beagle
  • Bearded Collie
  • Bichon Frise
  • Border Terrier
  • Borzoi
  • Boston Terrier
  • Boxer
  • Cairn Terrier
  • Dalmatian
  • English Cocker Spaniel
  • English Setter
  • English Springer Spaniel
  • Giant Schnauzer
  • Gordon Setter
  • Great Dane
  • Great Pyrenees
  • Irish Setter
  • Miniature Schnauzer
  • Old English Sheepdog
  • Parson Russell Terrier
  • Pointer
  • Rhodesian Ridgeback
  • Standard Schnauzer

Moderate with Kids

  • Afghan Hound
  • Airedale Terrier
  • Alaskan Malamute
  • Australian Cattle
  • Australian Shepherd
  • Border Collie
  • Bull Terrier
  • Bullmastiff
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Collie
  • Dachshund
  • Doberman Pinscher
  • English Bulldog
  • English Toy Spaniel
  • French Bulldog
  • Irish Wolfhound
  • Lhaso Apso
  • Miniature Pinscher
  • Miniature Poodle
  • Pekingese
  • Pembroke Welsh Corgi
  • Pomeranian
  • Pug
  • Rottweiler
  • Shetland Sheepdog
  • Standard Poodle
  • Weimaraner
  • West Highland White Terrier
  • Whippet
  • Wire Fox Terrier
  • Yorkshire Terrier

Less Suitable for Kids

  • American Bulldog
  • Chihuahua
  • Chow Chow
  • German Shepherd
  • Shih Tzu
  • Siberian Husky
  • Toy Poodle

This list was  compiled by Pet Peoples Place

young-kittenKittens feed on their mothers milk for several weeks after they are born. The mothers milk provides the proper nutrients necessary for the kitten to grow strong.  The mothers milk is called colostrum. It is very high in proteins and contains antibodies to help fight off disease.

Normally, kittens can be weaned once they reach four weeks of age. This is a gradual process. Slowly introduce solid foods to your kitten by mixing soft meat with hot water so that it can be easily chewed.  Do not mix the food with cows milk. Cows milk is not the same as cat milk. It should never be given to kittens as it is very hard to digest and can make them sick. The kittens may still feed from their mother from time to time.  When the kittens reach six weeks, that can eat the soft meat without the hot water.  The will be feeding even less from their mother.  Finally, at eight weeks they should be fully transitioned to solid foods with no assistance for the mother.  Now it’s time to buy some cat toys for your kitten as they are a bundle of energy.

cocker-spaniels-in-their-bedYou are always giving love and affection to your pets but you still have more to give. How can you help dogs and cats in need?  You can start at your local animal shelter. Many times they really need volunteers to walk dogs and pet and play with cats or even to provide foster care to some kittens or puppies until they are old enough to be adopted. There are rescue organizations for almost every breed of dog and for cats too. Animal sanctuaries need volunteers to help with care and feeding. After a natural disaster, like the earthquake in Haiti, many pets may need foster homes and a warm dog or cat bed until they can be adopted. This is very vital at this time of need. To find a place to volunteer in your area, check the yellow pages or search online under animal shelter or animal rescue. You help is greatly needed.

haiti-dog-and-catI was reading the news letter today by Dr. Don of the Pet Place and it really got me thinking about all of the pets that must have been lost or need rescuing in Haiti. There are some US and International groups that are banding together to help the animals there but according to Dr. Jon’s article, it may be a few weeks before aid workers are sent there. According to the ASPCA, they have joined the animal relief coalition( ARCH) which has been created to address the needs of the animal victims of the Haiti earthquake. The ASPCA has initially pledged about $25,000 to support ARCH’s relief efforts. The ASPCA indicated that they do plan to join forces with other organizations to help Haiti’s animal victims. The team of animal responders is awaiting access to Haiti so that they could begin animal relief with pet medication, food, bandages and other much needed medical supplies. Our beloved pets need our love and protection in the event of disasters. Lets hope that the rescue effort begins soon and lots of our furry friends could get the help they desperately need.

Our little Millie

Our little Millie

I have two cats. My older cat, Mollie always resented us bringing our younger, adopted cat Millie in the house. That was four years ago and the resentment continues. Mollie is very jealous of Millie and does things to tantalize her. For instance, she will block doorways so that Millie cannot get in the room where I am sitting or working. She also will go after Millie for no apparent reason. She will never hurt her but torments my poor little Millie whenever she has the chance.  One day, as I way doing my work, I noticed  Millie digging on the rug in the living room. I stopped and observed her. Then, to my shock, she started peeing on the rug!! I was really upset by this. I cleaned it up right away but this behavior continued and continued and continued! I was at my wits end. Then one day as I was getting ready for work, I noticed my older cat, Mollie blocking the bathroom door with the litter pan is. Millie was sitting there trying desperately to go around Mollie and get into the bathroom. I then realized what is making Millie pee on my good living room rug! She is even being blocked from doing her business!

Here’s some advice that I was given, add additional litter boxes. As a general rule, it is advised that the number of litter boxes should equal the number of cats in the house plus one. I have two cats but should have three litter boxes. The size of the litter box should fit your cat appropriately.

This did help solve the problem. Sometimes it’s very difficult to determine why cats do certain things. Before, yelling, punishing, removing treats or cat toys, get to the bottom of the problem then work toward the solution.