If you own a cat, you’ve probably heard about cat scratchers and furniture, maybe you even have one at home. It’s a pet product on which the cat is supposed to focus their scratching needs. Does your cat still scratch your furniture? Well, there is an alternative called soft paws. This amazing discovery is a set of silicone covers for the nails in different colors and many sizes. This gives you the great feeling of certainty that your furniture will remain safe from the scratches of the dangerous paws of your playful cat. Now that you know of both solutions, which one’s better? Everything has its pros and cons, so let’s see what are the pros and cons of the cat scratcher as well as the soft paws. Those who are for the cat scratcher will most certainly firstly say that it is much more natural than soft paws. Cat scratcher let’s your cat fulfill its need for scratching, playfulness, and most importantly – sharpening the nails. Those who, however, think that cat paws are a much better solution will firstly point to their furniture as a proof of the efficiency of this product, and then give the counter argument about “natural” by saying that sterilization is also unnatural but we get that done to our pats anyway. It is said that the cats feel fine when wearing cat paws, they can still extract and retract there paws like usually, so this product is basically like a nail polish for cats, only it’s hollow in the inside, like a cap for nails. This guarantees that your furniture will stay intact. As a con of this product, cat scratcher lovers will say that it is simply silly and it takes away the cats pleasure which she feels when she is scratching. The con of the cat scratcher is that you have to train your cat to scratch only that and not the furniture, so it is very possible that your furniture will suffer the consequences of your choice, in the best case only in the beginning of the cat ownership. Those who are for the choice of the cat scratcher will say that you only have to ask yourself one question – what do you love more, your furniture or your pet? With cat scratcher there are many possibilities for the fun time. They can be in many different shapes that can be fun for the cat even in the other ways besides scratching. We showed you the pros and cons of both products, the final choice is yours, will it be cat paws or cat scratcher?
Cat owners usually adore their feline friends, but often become annoyed with the finicky eating habits of their cat. Most cats never seem to like the same food twice, sending their owners back to the pet store for something new. A cat does not do this to simply frustrate their owner, though, as felines have evolved over thousands of years to be picky about what they eat.
Evolution of Cats as Finicky Eaters
The small and pointy teeth of cats allude to the fact that felines evolved eating small prey. Cats in the wild were solitary hunters that ate many small meals a day, such as small mammals, birds, or fish. The ancestors of the present day domesticated cats prowled around their landscape, eating whatever they could catch.
As cats evolved eating a variety of small prey, their taste buds developed to only register a very narrow ranger of flavors. This means that a cat can really only taste meat, and cats avoid anything that doesn’t have a meaty flavor.
A varied diet is essential for any animal, whether domesticated or wild, to survive and remain healthy. As felines evolved to only eat meat, to stay healthy, a cat would have to constantly seek out different prey to get the nutrients needed for survival. The basic instinct of a cat is that the newest flavor of meat is best, because it contains different nutrients that will aid in overall health.
When a cat snubs its nose after being fed the same flavor of cat food after a couple of days, it is not trying to give their owner a hard time. Rather, the feline is simply following the natural instincts that is has developed over thousands of years to stay healthy. Cats crave new flavors because new flavors have given them the essential nutrients needed for survival.
How to Please the Finicky Feline
As a pet owner, you may say, “Great, my cat has evolved eating lots of small animals, but how does this help me today?” The answer is simple. Offer your cat a variety of flavors.
Most cat food manufacturers make a wide variety of canned cat food. Anything from chicken, salmon, venison, and lobster is available in a can for a cat at your local pet food retailer. Buying your cat a variety of different flavors and rotating them throughout the week not only appeals to the selective nature of felines, but also helps the cat get the proper amount of water needed to avoid urinary tract problems.
Dry cat foods are an important part of any felines diet, but the choices are often limited. Some cat owners choose to rotate 2-3 different foods, while other choose to feed a food that contains 2-3 different meats.
Some people give their cats canned food in the morning and wet food in the evening. Other cat owners mix the wet food with the dry.
No matter what method works for you and your cat, variety is key. A variety of meat proteins will keep a cat healthy and prevent your pet from developing food allergies.
Just remember to read the first three ingredients on a label of cat food before you feed it to your pet. A cat food that is flavored like meat, but actually contains very little of it, may be appealing to your feline, but can lead to obesity and poor health.
Antifreeze is commonly used is colder climates in automobiles and other equipment. Many antifreeze formulations contain ethylene glycol, a substance that has a sweet taste that makes it attractive to curious dogs and cats. Unfortunately, ethylene glycol is a poisonous substance for both dogs and cats. Ingestion of antifreeze containing ethylene glycol can very easily be fatal to dogs and cats that ingest the substance.
How Much Antifreeze Is Necessary to Poison a Dog or Cat?
Very little antifreeze is necessary to cause a serious and life-threatening toxicity.
- For a cat, walking through a puddle of antifreeze and then licking the feet can produce a toxic dose.
- For a medium sized dog, as little as four to five tablespoons can be poisonous.
Remember that antifreeze has a sweet flavor that many pets, especially dogs, find pleasant tasting.
Mechanics of Antifreeze (Ethylene Glycol) Poisoning in Dogs and Cats
When ingested by a dog or cat, the unmetabolized portion of antifreeze (ethylene glycol) enters the spinal fluid and causes depression of the central nervous system. This depression may result in lethargy, incoordination, paralysis, seizures and even coma.
At the same time, ethylene glycol is metabolized by the liver into various metabolites, including glyoxylic acid and oxalic acid.
- Glyoxylic acid causes metabolic acidosis, which in turn will affect both the respiratory and cardiac systems.
- Oxalic acid binds to calcium, causing a decreased blood calcium level (hypocalcemia). It also forms calcium oxalate crystals that damage the kidneys, causing kidney failure and uremia (an increase of nitrogenous waste products in the blood stream). Uremia further contributes to the metabolic acidosis. Hypocalcemia makes seizures more likely.
Stages of Canine and Feline Antifreeze or Ethylene Glycol Toxicity
There are three stages that occur in antifreeze poisoning in the dog and cat.
- Stage one of ethylene glycol toxicity occurs very quickly after ingestion of antifreeze and can last up to 12 hours. Symptoms include an increase in thirst and an increase in urination. As the ethylene glycol affects the central nervous system, signs of intoxication will occur and may include lethargy, incoordination, partial paralysis and extreme sleepiness. Seizures and coma are other possible central nervous system symptoms that can be seen with antifreeze poisoning.
- Stage two usually begins within 12-24 hours of ingestion of antifreeze. Symptoms are primarily a result of metabolic acidosis and usually involve the heart and the lungs. An increased respiratory rate and heart rate are commonly seen. The lungs may also become congested or filled with fluid and breathing may become difficult as a result.
- Stage three typically starts 24-72 hours after ingestion of the toxic dose of ethylene glycol. Dogs and cats in stage three exhibit signs of kidney damage and kidney failure. These signs include lack of appetite, vomiting, depression, oral ulcers (sores in the mouth) and seizures. In the later stages, kidney failure will cause the kidneys to produce only small volumes of urine. This is termed oliguric renal failure. Eventually, urine production may cease altogether.
Often, pets suffering from antifreeze poisoning will appear to get sick, recover for a time and then have the symptoms return in a more severe manner.
Prognosis of Antifreeze (Ethylene Glycol) Poisoning for the Dog and Cat
The prognosis for a dog or cat that has ingested antifreeze containing ethylene glycol depends on several factors:
- the dose ingested
- the size of the animal
- the stage at which medical intervention occurs
Medical intervention is most successful when it occurs immediately after ingestion of the antifreeze. Generally, pets that receive adequate medical intervention within five to eight hours after ingestion have a much higher survival rate than those that receive medical attention later.
Once symptoms of kidney failure have developed, the chances for survival are poor and only the most aggressive medical attention (such as peritoneal dialysis, hemodialysis or even kidney transplantation) will give the pet any chance of survival.
Antifreeze poisoning is a common problem in dogs and cats and occurs because many types of antifreeze contain ethylene glycol, a toxic substance for both the canine and feline species.
Do you want a new kitten? This article covers pedigree and moggy kittens, where to buy kittens, the likely cost, and if owning a cat is right for you.
Everyone knows that kittens are gorgeous, and every year individuals and families decide to take the plunge and buy their first kitten. We take a look at all the issues involved, and also ask whether kitten owning is actually right for you.
What Kind of Kitten?
You need to decide if you want an ordinary non-pedigree kitten, or moggy, or whether you want to buy a pedigree kitten, or one of a particular breed. Moggy kittens are very easy to find, as every year many unwanted kittens are born to farm cats and others whose owners have forgotten to spay them. If you want a pedigree kitten, you will need to decide which breed of cat you are interested in. It is worth reading up in detail about each breed, as not only do they look different, but personality traits may vary as well. For example, Persian cats tend to be very laid back and are generally happy to live indoors, whereas Siamese cats are loud, extravert, and hate being left alone.
Where to Get Your Kitten?
There are a number of places where you can obtain a non-pedigree kitten. Most towns have animal rescue organizations such as the RSPCA or Cats Protection, or sometimes independent ones. Between April and October these places will probably be awash with kittens needing homes, and you should be able to find a kitten to suit you quite easily. Expect to be asked several searching questions on the type of home to have and who will be looking after the kitten, as rescue organizations try to make sure all their cats go to good homes. You can also find moggy kittens advertised in local papers and on supermarket boards, and in your local pet shop.
For pedigree kittens, you will probably need to contact a breeder of the relevant breed, although these kittens occasionally turn up at rescue organizations. Try looking in ‘Your Cat’ magazine, search the web, or go to cat shows and ask exhibitors if they have any kittens for sale. You may have to go on a waiting list to get the particular kitten you want.
The Cost of Your Kitten
For moggy kittens, expect to pay around £50 at a rescue organization. This should include health checks and vaccinations, and possibly spaying or neutering. Kittens elsewhere may cost less, but you will probably need to pay for all the health issues yourself.
Pedigree kittens cost from about £200 upwards. For more unusual breeds, expect to pay quite a lot more.
However, this is far form the whole story. Over its lifetime, a kitten will cost you thousands of pounds/dollars. You will need to budget for food, vet bills, care for the cat if you go on holiday, and a number of other items.
So you need to decide in advance – is buying a kitten right for you? They may look sweet and appealing, but they will grow up into cats, and live for anything up to 20 years, or even longer. Your kitten is a lifetime commitment. Are you ready for it?
All you know at this point is that you would like to adopt a cat. You also know where you want to adopt. So when you arrive at the shelter that you’ve selected, you state that you would like to adopt a cat. And before you know it, you’re in a room housing lots of cats and perhaps a few kittens. A few cats are very active, jumping at the bars of their cages. You also notice a few cats sitting quietly.
But the question remains. Which cat?
The first thing that you should do is take your time looking. Make a mental note of which cats you find appealing as you make your round. Is it that cute fluffy young cat who is playing with his siblings? Or perhaps that huge tabby sitting quietly sipping water from her dish.
Return to the cats who appealed to you for whatever reason. If their names are shown, call them by name. Pay attention to the response you get. Does the cat just look at you? Does the cat show some interest and move to the bars of the cage? Does the cat ignore you and go back to sleep or play with his siblings?
Go back to the cat who seemed to show some interest and speak to him or her. Ask the attendant if he or she can remove the cat from its cage and allow you to hold or pet it. Assuming that you;ve asked the attendant and he or she unlocks the cage door and lets you pet the cat, what do you think? Do you still like the cat? Does the cat purr as you pet him or her? Can you imagine having this cat in your home?
At the same time, remember that there are exceptions. For example, before I adopted my calico cat, Waffles, I didn’t give her much thought at all. She sat gazing at me from her perch in her cage for awhile as I looked and pet other cats. Then I visited Waffles again and hung around for a few seconds. I saw her step off her perch and walk to the cage bars and rub her head against the bars. That was when I called the attendant who opened the cage and let me pet Waffles. She purred louder and rubbed against my legs.
The upshot was that I adopted Waffles. She’s been with me for four years so far. It really appeared that she adopted me rather than the other way around. I love her and spoil her all the time.
At the same time, Waffles wasn’t the only cat who adopted me. Another cat, Columbus, a gorgeous creature with tabby markings and a fluffy tail, actually tried to follow me from the shelter! I happened to be looking for another cat at the time, so I wound up bringing him home as well.
So, to summarize, the next time you visit a shelter to adopt a cat, pay attention to the available cats for adoption. Next, mentally decide which cats appeal to you. Next, go back to those cats and see how they respond to you. Then make your final selection of which cat to adopt. Chances are that you adopted the perfect feline companion! Both of you won. The cat you’ve chosen has a great forever home and you have a feline companion who will love you unconditionally. Congratulations!
Isn’t it a fun feeling to think about bathing your dog just like how TV shows and movies show them? It does seem like a joyous time to make your dog clean and fresh. But in real life, bathing your dog is not always a good experience.
You do know that dogs love to be dirty and roll on stinky mysterious stuff. You’d be surprised that your dogs will put up a fight when they think it will aid them to avoid getting a batch. Watching a man featured in movies seemed hilarious as they chase after a dog covered in suds, it may not be fun at all in some households. Some dogs love to claw and wrestle against you and even get far away as possible from the place they were bathed in.
Do you want your bathing session with your dog stress-free? Here are tips on how to wash your dog properly and make it a more joyous and fun experience for the both of you.
The very first thing that you should do with your dog is to associate something positive with the bath. This is true when you introduce something new to your dog. This may seem unlikely to think about, but do it this way – offer affection, toys, and treats to get your dog to enter the bathing premises. Do this, too, when they behave in any way that is helpful when they are taking a bath.
You begin by letting them get used in hopping into the empty tub and spend a lot of time there while you provide your dog some toys or treats. Don’t rush putting warm water into the tub. Take the time until you work your way onto adding the water gradually. Make sure you don’t use hot water.
Do not be afraid of repeating these actions until you see your dog getting used to it. For instance, if you have a specific place where you put your dog to bath, try to invite them over to that place and give some treats each time they obey. Repeat this process until the time comes that they no longer need any treat.
When you own a puppy, start bathing him as soon as you can. He will be less opposed to the bathing experience when the pups are younger because they won’t have any negative associations with bathing time. Get them used to bathing during their young years, and eventually, you will encounter less trouble with bathing them in the future.
Protect the Pup’s Ears
When you bathe your dog, make sure you protect their ears so as not to let the water get inside it. It will be uncomfortable for your dog to feel some water inside their ears and it can also cause a lot of health problems for them.
If your dog allows you to do it, put in some cotton balls into his ears. If you can’t do it, just avoid spraying the water onto them. You can cover their ears if you want to pour water on them.
Start from the neck then down
Not only do you want to keep the ears of your dog safe, but you also want to protect their mouth and eyes. To do this, you start washing from their neck all the way to the tip to the back. You can do this by using a cup or bucket to wet the body of your dog. You can also use a sprayer for this, too. There are even sprayers designed specifically for dog bathing. Use a damp washcloth if you want to wash your pooch’s face.
The right shampoo
One of the ways that can make your dog’s bathing experience extremely unpleasant is when you use a shampoo that can cause their skin to dry out or make them scratch it a lot. You want to go with a mild soap that removes and cleanses unwanted odors without taking away the natural oils of their body. The perfect way to ensuring you are getting the right shampoo for your dog is to ask a vet.
Dry them right
A lot of dog owners prefer to use blow dryers for dogs, but there are dogs that are not comfortable with it. Some of them would even fight against it. But generally, dogs love to have air around them. Just make sure that you do not burn their skin.
Another way to dry off your dog is using the towel. If you do it this way, use an absorbent towel that is specifically designed for dog use. You can find them sold at pet stores. Be prepared for the extreme “shaking” when your dog dries themselves off.
How often should dogs bathe?
It depends on the case with your dog. There are some dogs that need frequent bathing, like the ones that get stinky a couple of hours after bathing. Other cases include how your dog has skin problems. There are dogs that do not smell even without bathing, but they still go with the regular bathing, which is generally every month.
When you want to bathe your dog every month, use a moisturizing or soap-free shampoo in order to prevent their skin from getting dry. Avoid bathing for more than once per week, unless it is recommended by your vet.
Making your dog love bathing
Some dog owners ‘play’ with them first before bathing them. This is their way of getting them to like bathing more than anything else. When they are playing for a long time, they love to dip themselves in water in order to cool themselves, so you can this to your advantage. Your dog will also have less energy to use to fight against bathing, so this is to your benefit.
Make sure that you don’t rush things. It can be difficult to live in the moment and stay balanced when you have limited time to get bathing done. Try to find the time to relax so that you can focus on bathing your dog after that.
Not every dog-loving person know that they are allergic to dogs. But when they do, living in a country that is fond of dogs is not going to be easy. Just in the US alone, around 47% of the households there own a dog. Dog dandruff tends to stick itself almost anywhere, including places that they have never even stepped their paw into. So it is safe to say that in every household, there is a level of detectable dog dander.
How are you going to get through your life with an allergy to dogs? Here is a summary of what causes your allergy to dogs and treatments to address it. You can also find tips on reducing your exposure to them.
The most common symptom of allergy to dogs is a nasal allergy. Others include the following:
- Stuffy, itchy and runny nose
- Reddish and itchy eyes
- Wheezing and coughing
There are some people that have dog allergies get skin reactions. There are various instances that can cause skin reactions, such as the skin have breakouts where it was licked. Others get more severe allergic reactions; wherein they develop hives on their chest or face. People with pet allergies or asthma can get really serious symptoms, too.
Some people who have symptoms above may conclude that they do not have any dog allergies, even if they already have one. The reason why they came up with this conclusion is that of the dog breeds. There are dog breeds that trigger symptoms of allergies while there are others that don’t. It can also be a situation wherein the short-haired canine are safe while the long-haired ones that shed a lot are those that aren’t. Experts say that this is not really the case at all. They say that two dogs from the same breed can give off different degrees of allergen.
The problem does not lie in the fur or the hair of the dog. Most of the time people are allergic to dog’s dander, which are flakes of dead skin, including urine and saliva. So, it doesn’t matter whether the dog has short or long hair. Any dog can cause an allergic reaction to people.
If you have noticed that dog’s dander have so much effect on you, you start to wonder why it is the situation. A person with allergies has immune systems that are overly sensitive. Their body tend to overreact to substances that are harmless, such as the dander from the dog, and attack that allergic component the same way that it does with viruses and bacteria. The watery eyes and sneezing are merely side effects of the body’s aim of flushing out or destroying the allergen.
Dog bath tubs are a lot of fun. I mean, what’s not to love seeing your dog frolic in the water as you give it a bath? You probably have been licked in the face by a very happy pet as you wipe him or her down. Even applying water to your pet’s fur can be a lot of fun for both you and your four legged companion. These make for great memories for your pet. But unfortunately, this is just part of the picture.
It’s easy to get excited about actually giving your pet a bath. It’s easy to get all caught up on how happy your pet is while taking a bath in the tub. The problem is, cleaning up dog bath tubs can be quite unpleasant. This is especially true if your pet puts up a fight or tries to dry out in the wrong way. All sorts of things could go wrong.
It’s too easy for the clean up part of the ever memorable dog bathing experience to be very very inconvenient. This is why I suggest you pay attention to the following tips. They can go a long way in making all your clean up hassles go away. They’re not entirely going to go away, there will always be opportunities for small problems in the future, but for the most part, they will minimize the big hassles with dog bath tubs.
Fill Up Your Bath Tub to the Right Level
This might mean like common sense, but unfortunately, most people blow past this. They have this intuitive notion of what the proper level is. Most of the time it turns out that they put too much water in the dog bath tub. When that happens and your dog is feeling excited, you can bet that there will be water all over the floor and chances are you will probably be taking a bath as well.
It’s the wrong kind of bath because you’re just being sprayed with water by your pet’s fur, but it’s a bath nonetheless. Believe me, having soapy film thrown on your face is not fun. So it’s really important to minimize this possibility by making sure that you fill up the bath tub with just enough water. Just enough water means that when your pet moves around it doesn’t end up with water being thrown all over the place. Keep enough water there to properly soap up and clean up your dog and not much else.
Proper Side Hooks
It’s always a good idea to have safety hooks or some sort of slot on the side of the dog bath tub. This way, you can put other equipment on the dog bath tub while you’re washing your dog. This makes the whole bathing experience much more convenient for both your dog and you. You would be able to get soap when you need it, you will be able to get a brush when you need it. Not only does this save time, but it makes the whole bathing experience so much smoother for your canine companion.
One of the biggest problems most dog owners face when washing their dog is that the dog is sitting there in the tub getting cold and uncomfortable while the owner is fumbling around for the right equipment. By making sure that there are proper slots or even containers at the side of your doggie bath tub, you speed up the whole process and ensure maximum comfort for your four legged friend.