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Archive for July, 2010

Wireless dog fences

Wednesday, July 21, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

wireless-dog-fencesThese fences have lately become very popular with some dog owners because they like to keep their dogs in the yard but like a wide open yard. The wireless dog fence comes with a receiver that is worn on the dog with a collar. It comes with a transmitter that is put in the ground. There is also underground wiring that comes with the fence. If your dog crosses over the wiring , the receiver on the dog’s collar will get a signal from the transmitter and the dog will get a very mild shock.  Some devices give the dog an audio signal when he gets to close to the underground wire. If he ignores the audio signal, then he gets a shock.

The shock is supposed to be a deterrent and the dog will not get hurt from it. The wireless dog fence should be used in addition with good training and patience from you. If you can’t spend the time to train your dog, then forget about the wireless fence and get a real fence!

If you are thinking of getting a wireless dog fence, you must do your research first. Find out how they work and what’s required for installation.  The Humane Society approves these fences as safe and humane.  They are not used as punishment for your dog but as a method to keep your dog in the yard and safe.

Personally, I wouldn’t recommend leaving your dog unattended. Never leave him alone in the yard and go out. If you don’t have the time to train him, I would recommend a dog pen or a regular yard fence.

Treating torn claws

Tuesday, July 20, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

cat-with-green-frog-headIt really isn’t that uncommon for a cat to tear a claw.  Sometimes their nails get caught especially if they are allowed to grow too long. My older cat, Mollie is always getting her claw stuck in something and when I hear a distressful “meow,” I get up and go rescue her. I carefully remove her stuck claw and she “happy” again.  If she tears the claw, a painful injury can result. If you notice your cat limping or bleeding, check her, she may have torn a claw.  If the claw is torn down close to the pad or your cat is bleeding, it’s probably a good idea to call your veterinarian. Even if your cat does not seem to be suffering, your veterinarian may suggest coming in for an office visit.  You don’t want to risk the toenail getting infected.  At an appointment, you veterinarian will likely examine the paw, remove the torn nail, bandage the cats foot and then prescribe a pet medication such as an anti-biotic.

When cats stop grooming themselves.

Monday, July 19, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

cat-cleaningCats sometimes look like contortionists when they clean themselves with their tongue, teeth, paws and claws. Grooming takes lots of energy. If you notice that your cat has stopped grooming herself, this could indicate that she is sick or in pain. If she is drooling or eating less, she could have diseased teeth and gums, something stuck in her mouth or even an oral tumor. If your cat is older and has arthritis, this could make all of the twisting and turning with grooming too painful. Overweight cats can also have a hard time grooming those hard to reach spots.  Sometimes they will stop grooming themselves if there’s an emotional problem.  Take her to the vet to determine why you cat has stopped cleaning herself. Your veterinarian will give her a thorough examination and maybe even give her some pet medication if necessary.

Are dogs more intelligent than cats?

Sunday, July 18, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

dog-and-cat-3This is a tough one. If you are a cat lover, I’m sure that you would say that cats are more intelligent. If you’re a dog lover, then of course your dog is much more intelligent. Actually this is difficult to answer because both species are much different. For starters, cats are loners and they do their hunting on their own. Dogs always hunt in packs.  Cats paws are much more dexterous than a dogs. This is because they have to be nimble enough to catch their prey such as mice.  Dogs can hunt down larger prey if they hunt in a pack.

Kittens and puppies grow at basically the same rate but cats do toilet train their kittens. Dogs on the other hand don’t.  If you looking for loyalty and an animal that is easily trained, then dogs win hands down. Dogs are life long companions but being a cat lover myself, I truly believe that cats are also companions. My older cat Millie is with me all the time when I’m home. She waits for me, sits with me and can tell if there  is something that is bothering me or if I’m in a bad mood.

So don’t worry about intelligence, pamper your pets with lots of love, dog and cat treats and loyalty.

Your dog’s bad breath

Saturday, July 17, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

dog-on-hike1If your dog has a bad case of halitosis, it’s time to take action.  That means getting him checked out by a veterinarian. Often the cause is periodontal disease or gingivitis.  Consider if your dog has any other symptoms such as inflamed gums, pain or excessive drooling. Periodontal disease is quite common in dogs.  If your vet finds no underlying cause for the stinky breath, try improving your dog’s oral hygiene. Brush his teeth regularly and feed him special dog treats that are designed to improve bad breath. In general, chewing helps to promote good oral hygiene because it scrapes the teeth clean. Some small dogs may also require regular tooth cleanings.

How do you know if your cat has worms?

Friday, July 16, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

cats-asleepIf you’re worried that your cat has worms, you’ll have to do some detective work.  Some signs to look for is lethargy, vomiting,  blood in the stools, diarrhea and abdominal pain. There could also be a lack of appetite or weight loss.  Some of these parasites are visible to the naked eye.  Look closely under your cats tail as well as in her bedding, stools and vomit.  Your veterinarian could use a microscope to examine samples of smaller worms and eggs.  There are several types of worms that can invade and harm your pet. Some of them could actually be transmitted to humans.  It’s very important that you seek treatment from your veterinarian as soon as possible. There is pet medication that can help cure this problem.


Why do cats bring home their prey?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

car-bringing-home-a-mouseIf you have an outdoor cat, it’s possible that one day when you opened the door to let her in, she gave you a present and dropped a dead mouse at your feet. You probably reacted with extreme distaste and quickly disposed of her “generous” little gift. Why do cats do this on occasion? The answer is simple. Cats are born predators and even though she has a good home and you feed her well, they are hunters by nature. In the wild, cats kill their prey for food.  Why do they bring their “little gifts” home you may ask? Well there could be several answers to this. One could be that they view you as their “boss” and they want to show you what a good job they are doing.  Another could be that your cat views you as an incompetent kitten who needs to be schooled in the ways of hunting. In any case, it’s not a pleasant experience. Indoor cats love to chase around the object at the end of their fishing pole cat toy as if they object were alive.

Music for Lonely Pets

Tuesday, July 13, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

lonely-dog-and-catPets do get lonely during the day when we are not home or if they are in a cage in a shelter.  Lots of people leave the radio or TV on during the day to keep their pets company. This is OK, but dogs and cats do not really get any pleasure or comfort out of it. It has been proven that animals do respond to music.  Classical music is what animals tend to respond to best. There are companies that sell music that is especially designed to calm and comfort pets. So when you leave the house in the morning, don’t just leave around dog or cat toys, put on some soothing classical music to calm and comfort your pets while your gone.

The Portuguese Water Dog

Monday, July 12, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

portuguese-water-dogThe Portuguese Water Dog was the dog of choice by President  Obama.  There are some good reasons why he probably chose this breed for his family.  The Portuguese Water Dog is a loyal, lively water loving dog. The are amusing and fun to be around.  They are loyal and affectionate with their family. They have lots of stamina and if they are exercised on a regular basis, they will be calm.  They are excellent with children and get along with other pets without any problem.  They need a chance to get to know cats so there are no problems.  They are even tempered and pleasant animals.  They are highly intelligent and trainable. Training is not difficult if you understand how to properly communicate.  They are very sensitive to the tone of your voice. Your voice should be soft but firm when training. This is an extremely intelligent dog and  will take liberties if it feels stronger minded than it’s owners.  Make sure you are consistent, confident and firm when handling this dog.  Portuguese Water Dogs make great watchdogs and have a very keen sense of smell.  Puppies are notorious chewers so make sure that you provide them with lots of chew toys.

If you decide to get a Portuguese Water Dog, do your research first, make sure that you have enough time to train him and spend quality time with him and he will make a wonderful companion for you and your family.

Colorful Calico Cats

Sunday, July 11, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

calico-catsCalico cats are not a breed but they all share unique markings. They have separate patches of red, while and black fur. Some calico’s have separate blocks of color but in pastel shades which give them an ethereal appearance. The coloring on these calico’s is a little different from your typical calico. Because two “X” chromosomes are needed to produce these markings, calico cats are almost always female. Like any mixed breed cat, calico’s don’t have any specific personality traits.  Instead their personalities are determined by genetics and early contacts with humans. But regardless of personality, the calico is always sure to be admired by other cat lovers. These cats enjoy all of the same cat accessories as other cat breeds.