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Cats and Dogs Can Get Along

If you have a cat and want to get a dog but are afraid for your kitty, cats and dogs can get along and vice versa if you have a dog and would like to get a cat. You do have to make sure first that the dog you get is not aggressive towards cats. Any rescue can tell you that, although shelters may not be able to tell you because of the lack of information on the dog. If you have a dog and want a cat then you obviously can tell if your dog is aggressive towards cats. If they are then by all means don’t get a cat, you don’t want to be responsible for killing the kitty.

First off the kitty must be made the alpha, not because cats rule and dogs drool (cats can also drool) but because they are small and fragile and can be easily injured even killed by a dog even small dogs. So your dog must learn that the cat is the alpha and respects the cat.

Second kitty must be allowed on all high places, counters, bookshelves, refrigerator, etc. Anyplace high and out of reach of the dog. Make sure each room has a place for kitty to get up high when it wants to. Cat trees are great for this but they must be high and secured to the wall, the bigger the dog the higher the tree.

Third get fully enclosed cage for your dog to be in 2 or 3 hours a day so kitty and dog get use to each other being in the same room. When your dog is out put kitty in YOUR bedroom and don’t let your dog into your bedroom even at night for a few weeks. This will help your dog learn the cat rules otherwise your dog will still think he or she rules. You can kennel your dog in your bedroom at night as an alternative. Feed kitty first, let your dog see you loving on kitty.

After about 6 to 8 weeks put a muzzle on your dog when kitty is around except at night when dog is in his or her kennel. You will have to monitor the situation yourself, it may take longer. Make sure you are always disciplining your dog when you see any aggressive behavior even aggressive play towards kitty. This is one time when bad behavior must be disciplined for the sake of the kitty’s life. You will start noticing your dog leaving kitty alone or even sniffing each other without your dog getting excited. Dogs excitement can many times turn into aggression so your dog must prove him or herself that they are submissive to kitty before they can ever play and snuggle together. If you are patient  it will happen. See the end result and don’t push it, some of the most loving relationships are between a cat and a dog. Trust your instincts and always monitor, monitor, monitor. You can even seek help from a dog trainer and include them (the dog trainer) in your plans for a new dog or new cat.

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Keeping Kitty Inside While Insuring Their Happiness

Many people like to let their kitties go outside in the day time because it’s easier. They can entertain themselves and the owners don’t have to mess with spending the time or money on toys. But if you have adopted a cat from a rescue you’ve signed a contract stating you will not let kitty go outside. If you do and the rescue finds out about it, which they can, they have legal grounds to take kitty away from you. So if you want your kitty to go outside then get a cat from the city shelter.

The benefits of keeping kitty inside is your kitty not being harmed or killed. Now how do you keep kitty happy; buying a tall cat tree helps considerably but big cat trees cost a lot of money unless you buy a used one. Check out Craigslist for one. You can clean it up and put catnip on it and kitty will love it. Also put some shelves around like under a window or mini ones that go up the wall in steps to one large one. It can actually be done in a designerly fashion, you could even paint them in fun colors. Engage kitty in some playtime once a day, this will also bring a real bond between you two that is not as strong with people who let there cats go out all day and don’t need to play with them. Another option is to have 2 cats then just one so they have a playmate and snuggle mate. In the end you will be glad for it because it is a fact that indoor cats live longer than indoor/outdoor. It is our responsibility as pet owners to keep our pets as safe and as healthy as possible just as a parent would their own children.

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Bargain Tips For Your Pets

One of my favorite bargain places to go to is Costco, they have the best deals on dog beds, very inexpensive but very good beds. Dog treats are also excellently priced along with their Kirkland dog food both canned and dry and it’s very good quality food, just read the ingredients. They also have Kirkland dry cat food which is also excellent quality. I’m looking forward to when they finally offer Kirkland canned cat food. Periodically they sell cat trees that are good quality and inexpensive. Their litter is very good, it’s called Litter Purrfect, 35 lbs for about $8 and doesn’t stick to the litter box when used, also the ingredients are “green” ingredients.

They also sell flea medication which is Frontline but I’ve found Advantage II works better. Petsmart sells it for a reasonable price. If you have cats or small dogs you can actually buy the extra large dog size of Advantage II (DO NOT use Advantix on cats) and follow the amount of the vial size for the pound size of your cat or small dog that you have been giving, by using a syringe. For example; a cat of 9 pounds or more would be given .8ml from a syringe, of the extra large dog vial of Advantage II. Here is a website that can help you: http://www.lisaviolet.com/cathouse/advantage.html With small dogs follow the same principle. This is how Rescues save money on the flea medication they give to their rescue pets.

Amazon also is another great place to purchase toys for your babies. For cats who love catnip a place to buy online in bulk is http://www.mountainroseherbs.com/bulkherb/c.php there are other places too to check out also. Trader Joe’s canned cat food and dog food is also excellent quality and very inexpensive.

Hope these tips help your wallet while not cutting back on quality on your babies. 🙂

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Simple Dog Training Tips

For potty training use wee wee pads and spread them all over the room your using, reward them when they go on the pads. After they have mastered going only on the pads start taking one away at a time guiding the pads in one direction which is the door they go outside until there is only one pad left. Any time they go off the pads, because set backs can happen, stop taking the pads away until they get the idea again. Then continue to take more away until you have one left then take the last one away and puppy will know to go outside because there are no wee wee pads to go on.

Teaching your dog to come on command. Get a very very long rope, about 100 feet. Let your dog wander around, then call your dog to come and draw them in by the rope. Have a treat ready to give to them. Keep doing this every time until they get the idea when they come they get a treat.

If you have a dog who is unruly around other dogs while walking, bring treats with you. When you see another dog coming have your dog sit away from the sidewalk and as the other dog gets closer put the treat in front of your dog’s nose without giving it to them. Wave the treat back and forth to keep their attention on the treat. After the dog has passed by give it to them. This takes time and patience because your dog will probably not remain in seated position the first few times, so keep a firm grip on them. But after awhile they will get the idea that every time they see another dog they will get a treat.

With dogs behind fences keep the treat as much as possible in front of your dog’s nose while walking by waving it back and forth to keep their attention on the treat. You can even eventually stop and make them sit and have a cookie with the other dog behind the fence but don’t forget to give one to the dog behind the fence too. 🙂

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When Your Cat Starts Urinating Outside The Box

If you have a cat that pees outside the litter box or sprays, that is not an uncommon problem and it can be remedied. So many people end up getting rid of kitty without trying to find out the reason. Please don’t do that! The problem can be solved with some love and patience.

First and foremost take kitty to your Vet and find out if they are having urinary or kidney problems such as an infection. If they do have an infection your problem is solved, if not then we move on to emotional problems, such as anxiety. Sometimes it can be remedied by simply scooping the litter box more than you are. Cats are very clean animals and they like a clean litter box to go in just as we like a clean toilet to go in. Also some cats don’t like the hooded litter boxes, take the lid off and try that. Another possible remedy is get another litter box especially if you have multiple cats. A rule to go by is a box for each cat plus one.

Another possibility is if a new cat has moved into the neighborhood and has been coming around the house and hanging out. This can really upset some cats to the point of spraying around the house and if you have multiple cats they can even get into fights with each other because of the outside cat. If that’s a problem they actually have cat repellant sprays to keep the outside cats away. Just spray it around the outside of the house.

Another possibility is a spray called Feliway, it’s a spray with synthetic happy cat pheromones. Actually they are momma cat pheromones and cats become very calm with this. There are diffusers and sprays, I would use both. After thoroughly cleaning the areas spray all those areas where kitty has sprayed or peed. Each morning you need to do this for about 6 months to make sure kitty has settled in to not spraying or peeing. You can buy this on Amazon.com a lot cheaper than at a store.

The last option if the others have failed is ask your Vet to put your cat on Prozac this will work. Give it some time for the medication to start working. I would still use the Feliway for a couple of months with the medication. Talk to your Vet also how long your kitty can be on the Prozac, some cats need to be on it for along time. The main thing is not to give up on kitty. I hope these suggestions work for you.

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Bereavement

Anyone who has had a pet has experienced the death of their beloved pet. How we go through that loss is unique for each person, depending on how close you are to your pet. Some people who are very close because they are single and have no children experience that loss in a very profound way. It can be very devastating often because they have to grieve alone due to the people around them not understanding and just seeing the loss as just an animal and not like losing a child. But infact to that person it can be just like losing a child because that pet was like a child to them. Hence they grieve alone. So to all those who have experienced this kind of profound loss you are not alone there are many of us out there who know how you feel because we have felt it. God is the best comforter of all, go to Him when no one else understands because He does.

Psalm 36:6, Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your justice like the ocean depths. You care for people and animals alike, O Lord. How precious is your unfailing love, O God!

In other words He loves all His creation equally; differently but equally.

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Are You Ready For A Natural Disaster?

We live in earthquake country and with the probability of at least a moderate earthquake happening soon is very high even a major earthquake happening is very high. We need to be ready for it and that means having enough provisions like enough food, water, medication (if needed), cash and even a first aid kit, not only for you and your family but also for your pets. Experts say that we need to have enough for at least 3 days because we most likely will be on our own for at least that long with no help from the government. But for pets we need to have more than 3 days because FEMA does not cover pets and if stores are out of pet food it may be awhile for trucks to come into areas of the city to deliver. So it’s best to be over supplied for your pets. I myself have 3 weeks of pet food for my cats, better safe than sorry. For dogs, along with the basics, I would add some bones to chew on to help with the stress of the situation. And one last thing if you have multiple cats, make sure you have a carrier for each one. Many people don’t and you need one for each if you need to evacuate your place fast like in case of fire. Our furry members of our families are depending upon us and we can’t let them down. Also if you are one who feeds those precious little strays please don’t forget them they’ll need help too.

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Spay or Neuter Your Pet

If you’ve adopted a new pet and haven’t gotten them fixed or are going to get a new pet and haven’t considered getting them fixed you need to as soon as they are big enough. It’s better for them and better for you. For them they tend to be more on edge when not fixed because whether they are male or female they have one thing one their mind other then food and that is mating. They are also not as cuddly and loving as they would be if they were fixed. Mating for them is very stressful because there is a lot of fighting especially with males, so their life expectancy tends to be anywhere from 2-6 years. They are out at night and if coyotes don’t get them a car hitting them or a cruel person will.

For you leaving your pet unaltered can be costly with always having to bring them into the vet because of injuries, bite wounds and then there is the unwanted kittens or puppies, what do you do with them? You can’t find homes for all of them continuely. Taking them to the shelter most often leads to death because they just don’t have the funding to take care of all the unwanted pets and rescues get inundated with kittens and puppies until they have to say we can’t take anymore in now. Then some people just turn them out on the streets to fend for themselves or even throw them out in dumpsters or on the freeways. It’s sad people can be so cruel and careless but this is the world we live in and this can be avoided by simply fixing them. Many shelters offer vouchers for people who can’t afford some of the high costs that many vets charge. They can also guide you to low cost clinics if you just call the shelters and ask. Here in the Los Angeles area, in Burbank there is a place called Fixnation that will fix a male for $30.00 and female $40.00 and with the shelter vouchers of $20.00 you only pay $10.00. Vaccines are about $8.00 to $10.00 each. They even have a little clinic there now too.

So I ask you to please, please fix your pets and pass the word to any other family members and neighbors so we can keep our pets happy and safe it actually doesn’t take much money or effort.

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Adopting Rescue and Shelter Pets

So many people have this mythical idea that pets from shelters or rescues carry all this baggage of bad behavior and that’s why they were turned into the shelter to begin with. Most of the time that is untrue, many of them have been turned in because people can’t afford them anymore, have to move to some place where they’re not allowed animals or the owner has died. Even if there is some bad behavior, standard practice with rescues and shelters are they test them to see if and what behavioral problems there are and then they work with them so they can find a forever home because for one they don’t want to be liable for adopting out an aggressive dog or cat or a pet that would tear up someone’s house and two they don’t want that pet to be turned back in. Their goal is to find a forever home and placing the right dog or cat with the right person or family.

What you need to do is  talk to them and tell them what your lifestyle is, are you an active person or do you work a lot so they can direct you to the right type of dog or even cat. If you’re not an active person you don’t want to adopt a standard poodle or a pitbull or other bigger dogs like these because you could end up with a real problem with these dogs getting very bored and frustrated and then getting into trouble all the time or even worse getting aggressive. That’s what happens too often with pitbulls, people get them as puppies and don’t give them the exercise through play or walking or running with them and the dogs don’t get the stimulation they need. These dogs are very highly active dogs so you need to be highly active yourselves. So ask the rescuer or shelter people for help in picking the right pet for your lifestyle and when you do this, getting the right pet from a rescue or a shelter, it is the most rewarding feeling because these pets know they are being rescued and they show their appreciation in so many ways.

As an owner of rescue and shelter cats myself I can say they are the best and you will be so happy too. And also try an adult pet, everyone tends to go for the puppies and kittens, which are so precious, but the adult ones have a higher mortality rate because of that. The shelters have to put them down because more people gravitate to the puppies and kittens. Consider that adult pets are potty trained which is a major plus. So check out your local rescues and or shelters there are a lot of furry babies that are eagerly waiting for you to give them a good home and they will thank you in so many ways. I also thank you for them too.

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