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Archive for May, 2010

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Do cats Dream?

Just like with humans, cats alternate between deep and light sleep at night. Dreaming does occur during the deep sleep phase. You can tell if your cat is dreaming by movement of his claws and paws. Sometimes they will twitch their whiskers. My cat makes a soft noise when she is dreaming. They will spend hours and hours in their cat bed purring and dreaming.

What can you tell from your cats tail?

When your cats tail is bent forward over his head, it means that is is feeling like “top cat.”  When it’s waved quietly side to side like a lady’s fan, the cat is contented.  Several quick flicks upward is a greeting to humans and other cats.

Why do cats sulk and stare?

You are very large in comparison to your cat. When you scold him, you are intimidating him. When you look down at him  to discipline him,  he is associating your stare with a rival.  They eyes of many animals are a signal of power. In comparison to other animals, a cats eyes are very large. In a hostile situation, a cat will stare at his rival. My older cat just has to stare at my younger one and my younger cat goes flying out of the room. This happens frequently. When your cat turns away after being disciplined, he isn’t ignoring you, he is surrendering.

Why are cats so curious?

Cats by nature are explorers and are constantly on the hunt not always for food but to satisfy his quest for the unknown.

excited-puppyThere are so many ways that pets are just like people. One thing is their health conditions. Generalized anxiety disorder can make our pets shaky and skiddish.  They can become stressed for anything from thunderstorms to separation. Their chemistry prepares them for fight or flight even when it’s not necessary. Gary Landsberg, an Ontario based Animal Behaviorist says that pets who didn’t have enough exposure to the best influences  when they were younger can have stress problems at an older age. They could have been deprived in some way or even have had nutritional problems when they were young which is the reason for this disorder.  If your pet needs help coping, seek the advice of your veterinarian. He will do a complete evaluation and recommend some pet medication that could possible help.

cat-chewingSome cats have very strange chewing habits. Some will chew on clothing or cotton, mine likes to chew on string. Did you know that odd cat chewing behaviors could result in serious medical complications? If I catch any of my cats chewing on anything that I consider dangerous such as string, I immediately take it from them and get rid of it.  Here are some tips that may help to curb a cats chewing habits.

  • If your cat feels the need to crunch on things, substitute his chewing on something dangerous with something that is good for him. Try carrots, lettuce or dry food. You can also get some cat chew toys.
  • You may want to create a window box that is filled with cat nip or wheat grass. My older cat loves to chew on grass but since I keep her indoors, occasionally I will buy her some wheat grass as a treat.
  • Try hiding some bits of dry food around the house. If will give them something to do rather than chew on things that may harm them.
  • If your cat insists on chewing plastic, wood or fabric, try spritzing those things with a bitter substance or a cat safe repellent.
  • Most cats don’t like the smell of perfume. Mix one part perfume with ten parts of water and spray in the place where you do not want your cat to chew.
  • Make sure that your cat is not chewing on electrical cords. If this is the case, use gaffer’s tape to wrap around exposed cords.

dogs-at-nightIf you walk your dog at night, you’ve probably realized that there are certain risks involved.  One of the biggest risks is not being visible to oncoming vehicles and not being able to see your dog if you’re in a very dark area without street lights. There are products that light up in the dark, such as lighted collars or pet blinkers which hook on to your dogs collar to light the way. Here are some additional tips that will help keep you and your dog safe.

  1. Always wear light or bright clothing.
  2. Always carry a flashlight.
  3. Purchase sneakers with reflectors or LED lights on the sides.
  4. Purchase reflective tape and attach it to your clothing and even to your dog’s collar.
  5. If possible, avoid walking along the road. If you have no other choice, walk against the traffic so you’ll see the cars and hopefully they’ll see you and your dog. Keep your dog farthest from the road.
  6. Always keep your dog on a leash and keep him as close as possible to you.

Are calico cats always female?

Monday, May 17, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

calico-catA calico cat has large blocks of three colors, usually black, white and orange. Calico cats are nearly always female because  the coat color in cats is a sex linked trait. It’s a physical characteristic that is related to gender. Female animals have two X chromosomes (XX). Males have an X chromosome and a Y chromosome. (XY)  The genetic coding that is found in black or orange color is found on the X chromosome. The coding for white coloring is a completely different gene. Since females have two X chromosomes, they are able to display two colors, orange and black as well as white.  This creates a three color calico mix. Since males have only one X chromosome, they can only be either orange or black.

Can a calico cat ever be male?  The answer is yes but in very rare cases.  In this case the cat has two X chromosomes and one Y chromosome. (XXY)  These male cats are usually sterile.

Calico cats do not behave any differently that regular cats. They make great pets, love treats, catnip, cat toys and lots of attention!

dog-in-toiletIf you have a pet, you will always have some kind of stain that you will need to remove but if you do it the wrong way, you will make the stain worse. If the stain is wet, blot the area with a dry cloth then use a removal product that has absorbent granules.  You may apply these granules directly to the urine stained area. After you have blotted the stain and applied the granules, spray or pour on a pet stain and removal product that contains live bacteria and enzymes. The natural organisms in these products “eat away” the odor causing bacteria. This will permanently remove them from deep in your carpet. This is the best method for removing this type of stain.  The natural organisms do not stop working until they have “eaten away” all of the odor causing bacteria. These products also contain mild detergents which will help to restore the carpet fibers to their original state and leave behind a pleasant scent.

If the stain has dried, do not use the same products that you would use on a wet stain. More aggressive bacteria and enzymes are needed to get rid of dried stains. Special formulas are available that penetrate deeper and are more effective on dried stains. You will need to re-apply within 24 hours.

dog-sittingWorms are the most common health problem for a dog.  This problem is very treatable with the large variety of dog wormer products on the market.  First of all, it’s important to know if you are diagnosing the correct problem. Here are some symptoms that it is a worm problem.

  1. You see visible feces or worms on your dog.
  2. You see worms around you dogs rear. Tapeworm may appear as small moving segments which later dry out to resemble grains of rice.
  3. Your dog is scratching or rubbing himself  against the furniture. Signs of itchiness could be a sign of a gland problem rather than worms.
  4. Vomiting with visible worms.
  5. Weakness, increased appetite with weight loss can indicate that your dogs have worms. The worms steal your dogs nutrition causing these symptoms.
  6. Bloated stomach or belly.
  7. Diarrhea with blood in it.

Always check with your vet who will put you on the right track in treating your dog.

Things to Consider for a Pet Bed

Friday, May 14, 2010
posted by PetsRule

dogsleepThe size, health and needs of the dog or cat are a few of the prime aspects to consider before buying the bed. Talking about size, the bed should be big enough to let the pet lie flat on his side on the bed.

Old dogs or dogs that are ill or have arthritis would need special orthopedic dog beds.
The next consideration is the comfort level and style of the dog bed. Big cushions can serve as pillows, while dog mats are thinner than pillows. Rugs and cuddlers would definitely keep your dog comfortable and support a curling dog on all three sides.

The filling of the pet beds must provide the utmost comfort to the animal. Foam is the most preferred choice. Make sure you get removable and washable bed covers, because dogs are bound to make them dirty. Extra bed covers will prove to be a great help, especially with dogs that are not yet trained properly.

kitty-sillThe soft purring of your cat is soothing to you as gently pet her while she is sitting on your lap. Why do cats do this?  Generally, cats purr when they are content or are pleased.  Purring is also a way that a mother and her kittens communicate.  Did you know that cats will also purr when they are under stress?  A visit to the vet or if they are recovering from an injury can cause a cat to purr but for a different reason.  So cats purr when they are content but also when they are under some sort of stress.

One view is that  original purpose of purring was to let a kitten communicate to it’s mother letting her know that everything is Okay.  Kittens can purr buy the second day of life but they can’t meow at this point. A mother often purrs back probably to reassure the kitten.

The sound frequency of purring is between 25 and 150 hertz. It has also been said that purring can improve bone density and promote healing. So there is some evidence that cats can influence our health in a positive way. Purring is a natural low energy way to stimulate bones and muscles.

So remember, when your cat is perched on his kitty sill, contently looking out of the window purring his heart out, he is really helping you as well!

dog-with-medsIf thunderstorms send your dog threw the roof, therapies for storm phobia include pet medication, behavioral modification, and classical conditioning. If it’s already storm season, the best solution is anti-anxiety pet medication. Terri Curtis, an Veterinary Behaviorist at The University of Florida, says dog appeasing pheromone is also useful. She says that it’s a pheromone that mimics nursing mothers’ so it’s very soothing and calming. It comes in a diffuser, spray and collar form.  Putting a collar on or a diffuser where the dog tends to stay during a storm can be very useful. During the off season, desensitize your dog by using behavior modification and classical conditioning.  You may also try giving him treats while you play a storm CD.