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Pet Grooming For a Healthy and Happy Pet!
by Kritthaphat N.

Our pets are more than just animals who happen to live with us. They are also our friends and sometimes even our own family member. We should take care of them and even though some may raise an eyebrow, pet grooming is the "in" thing now.
Two of the most common pets that people have are dogs and cats. In this day and age these animals also have needs that we need to address. Since they are living with us we want them to be clean and we want them to smell good. That is why pet grooming is a must for any pet owner. Let's take dogs for example they are very playful animals and most of the time we play with them in our gardens or in the park. In those areas they can accumulate millions of bacteria while running in the grass or mud. The very basic thing we can do is to give them a regular bath as part of pet grooming. This will not cost you much since you only need clean water and dog shampoo. Just make sure that you clean your dog well so that the germs can be removed. Also brushing the dog's coat is recommended. This will remove tangles and dirt. It is also advised that you brush the dog's teeth twice a week to remove stains and bad odor. You can purchase dog toothpaste and brushes in most pet stores. For added grooming you can visit pet salons which offer, nail maintenance, special fur treatment and other things that will make your dog more beautiful to look at.

Now let's go to cats. They are much more difficult to handle than dogs when it comes to pet grooming. Since we all know that cats hate water they seldom take a bath and on the occasions that they do, you can be assured that it will be a very tough task for both you and your pet. But thankfully nowadays there are pet salons where you can avail of their services. Most of their services already include a bath, personal styling, trim of their fur and toenail trim. If you are willing to pay then this is a good and easy way to make sure your cat is well groomed. But if you prefer to give the cat a bath yourself then you should put him or her in a bathtub and put inside it something that he or she can cling to, like a wooden platform. The cat needs that so he or she will have something to scratch while you are giving the bath. After the bath use a towel to dry the cat. You can also comb the fur, especially for cats with long furs, they should be combed properly. As mentioned above, you can avail of grooming services in your local pet stores if you don't have the time to do it yourself.

Pet grooming is essential so your pet will live a long and healthy life.

A New Dog in Your Home: Welcome Him Home!
by Kelly Marshall

On your pet's first day home, give him a tour around your home on a loose leash. This is the dog's first introduction to any limitations you want to put on his future access to your furniture, souvenirs, books, the kids' toy shelves, etc.
Be aware that this is not the right time for "no." (Your dog might begin to think that "no" is his name.) Use a guttural "Yack!" combined with a little tug-and-release of the leash as he sniffs to warn him away from your untouchables. Your dog is new at this, but just saying, "Puppy!" in a happy voice may be enough to get him to look at you - "Good dog." Now, back to happy talk as you continue.

You are simply letting him know by means of prevention (a growl sound he understands) what things he will need to avoid in the future. Allow him to sniff first because he'll remember the objects more by smell than by seeing. As your dog looks up at you, he's praised. Think of it like this: "No!" means "Don't do that!" whereas "Yack!" means "Don't even think of doing that!" Small talk is natural and pleasurable to both of you; but in the beginning your dog will only pick up on his name because everyone uses it with things he finds enjoyable - play, food or praise. If you use the word "din-din" many times while preparing his food, that word will stick out in his mind as a five minute speech on nutrition as a clue to the observant dog that he is about to eat. The human-canine teaching method is based on short, simple words that are constantly applied to specific actions.

Your dog's first guided tour will teach him the layout of his new home, what it looks like, smells like, even feels like (rugs, carpets, tile, wood) and that a few things are off limits even to adorable pups. There is one more important lesson he is learning from this adventure: that you are the Boss, the He or She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed. If you do not take on this role, the dog will. Somebody's got to do it, and he'll fill the vacancy right away! You may be familiar with the saying, "Lead, follow or move out of the way." Every puppy is born with it and continues to live by it!

Once your home tour is complete, now it's down to the basics. Show Rex where his water bowl is located. Let your dog scope his crate. Then take your puppy outside (while leashed) to the exact area where you want him to release waste. Stand there until he is done. (Remember be Patient. He's new at this.) Praise him quietly as he goes, after that you can make the same type of tour outside, with warnings about your shrubberies, flowers or garden. Or you may live in a town or city by law (and responsible dog ownership) must curb Rex. Go to the quietest no-parking location. If you stay on the sidewalk, he will want to join you, so stand down in the street with your dog. It will take time to get your dog used to the noise, the confusion and the speed and size of vehicles. Please note - no outside walking tour during this time. Wait until his vaccinations are done. By this time he will be more accepting of city or town life.

Important Note: If the original trip home from where you picked up your dog took more than an hour, switch the two "tours" to let him remove waste first.

About the Author
Article by Kelly Marshall of Oh My Dog Supplies, check for current specials on elevated dog feeders online.


Using a Pet Sitter? How to Prepare Your Home and Pet
By Linda Goldston Mercury News

Try to imagine the horror of a pet sitter who shows up and there is no house key or the key does not work. Or there is no food for the pets.

You can get so caught up in getting ready for a trip that you forget a few basics that will keep your pets healthy and happy while you're gone. Carolyn Namba, founder of Silicon Valley Pet Nanny (, comes highly recommended and was kind enough to draw on her experiences to help you get ready for the sitter.

"As a professional pet sitter for the past four years, I have encountered many situations where my clients have forgotten to leave important information, items and most importantly, keys," Carolyn says. "This resulted in my creating a 'pet sitting kit' which sits in my trunk all the time.

"As pet sitters, we value your privacy and are not comfortable searching for household items, so this is a checklist of what you should have ready for us prior to our first visit with your pet:

1. The key — You should have a key ready for your pet sitter before his or her first visit.

If you make a copy of the key, please test it out; there is nothing worse than the copy not working. If you live in an apartment community and must leave the key for the sitter in the rental office, make sure you check with the people there regarding operating hours. We have shown up at the community's rental office and it was not open.

2. Your pet — You

should make sure that your dog has his/her collar and license on, or with the leash if the animal do not wear it while in the house. You should have your cat microchipped, even if it is indoor only.

3. Instructions — Although you will need to fill out paperwork for your pet sitter, it's always a good idea to leave a little instruction sheet. Information provided us can become outdated (i.e. emergency information, phone numbers, veterinarian information, etc.), so leaving an instruction sheet ensures that we have your correct information.

Let your pet sitter know if you have a house cleaner or gardener, or if family or friends will be dropping by.

4. Pet/home items — Make sure to leave pet and home related items where they can be easily found by your pet sitter:

An ample supply of pet food. It is not unusual for changes in travel plans, and we want to make sure we have enough food in case this happens.

Extra kitty litter. Litter box scoop. Towels — in case of rain, there's nothing worse than a wet pooch.

Pet brushes, garbage bags, broom and dust pan.

Ant spray — ants are the nemesis of pet sitters, and we encounter them frequently.

Vacuum, carpet cleaner — in case of dog/cat accident.

Watering can if you have plants you need watered.

5. Prepare your home — This will help the sitter better care for your 'kid(s)' while you're away.

Clean litter box and clean up any dog waste in your yard. We are happy to clean up your yard while you're away, but appreciate a clean yard when we start.

Set thermostat to the desired temperature, and provide instructions if you would like us to adjust it in case of heat wave or cold weather.

Block off any areas that you do not want your pet to be in, and please leave a note regarding these areas."

Sitter recommendations

My thanks to Carolyn. Now that we're armed with how to choose a sitter and how to prepare our house, I'll start running your sitter recommendations next week. There's still time to send me yours; please include the sitter's contact information and price. If you have a good photo of your pet, send that, too, and I'll run them as we go along.

And don't forget: The holidays aren't that far away, so you need to call a sitter or kennel now if you plan to be out of town then.

Contact Linda Goldston at or (408)"‰920-5862.

Pet Sayings: Curiosity Killed the Cat
SF Gate

Everyone knows that, despite being gifted with nine lives, curiosity killed the cat. But there's actually a bit more to the story...

The "killed the cat" proverb originated as "care killed the cat" (with care meaning "worry or sorrow"). It served as a warning that worry is generally bad for your health and can lead to an early grave. The phrase was a nod to the very cautious and careful disposition of cats.

This form of the expression is first recorded in Every Man in His Humour by the English playwright Ben Jonson:

"Helter skelter, hang sorrow, care'll kill a Cat, up-tails all, and a Louse for the Hangman."

The play is thought to have been performed in 1598 by The Lord Chamberlain's Men, a troupe of actors including William Shakespeare and William Kempe. The following year, Shakespeare appropriated this memorable line in Much Ado About Nothing:

"What, courage man! what though care killed a cat, thou hast mettle enough in thee to kill care."

The earlier form was still in use in 1898, when it was defined in Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable:

"Care killed the Cat. It is said that a cat has nine lives, but care would wear them all out."

The more modern (and familiar) version, "curiosity killed the cat," now used to encourage caution when investigating situations or to attempt to stop someone from asking unwanted questions, first appeared in print in 1909 in O. Henry's Schools and Schools:

"Curiosity can do more things than kill a cat; and if emotions, well recognized as feminine, are inimical to feline life, then jealousy would soon leave the whole world catless."

Still, the proverb has been widely (although not accurately) attributed to Eugene O'Neill who included it in his 1920 play Diff'rent. The full quote by O'Neill is, "Curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought it back."

Perhaps this saying's longevity and continued popularity is due to the fact that curiosity has not always been valued over the centuries. Saint Augustine wrote in Confessions, AD 397, that, in the eons before creating heaven and earth, God "fashioned hell for the inquisitive." John Clarke, in Paroemiologia, 1639 suggested that, "He that pryeth into every cloud may be struck with a thunderbolt." In Don Juan, Lord Byron dubbed curiosity, "that low vice."

Being a curious soul, I respectfully beg to differ. Is curiosity a vice? Perhaps. But it's certainly not one that I'm willing to give up anytime soon.

May your weekend be filled with curious happenings...and may no cats be killed in the process.

If you're curious about other pet sayings, be sure to check out these previous posts.

Posted By: Amelia Glynn (Email)

Pet Talk: Best Way to Handle Wild Baby Birds?
The Marco Eagle

It’s probably happened to you: You’re walking down the sidewalk, you hear a faint chirping sound, and you look down to see a plump baby bird staring up at you and you think that a cute new pet has fallen right into your lap.

But wildlife experts have three words of advice: leave it alone.

“Take pictures, enjoy them, admire them, but don’t mess with them,” says Teresa Shisk-Saling, a veterinary technician at the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences at Texas A&M University. “The absolute worst thing you can do is pick it up, take it home and try to make it a pet.”

Touching a bird is a bad idea for several reasons. Parasites, salmonella and other bacterial diseases can all be picked up from wildlife, and although birds are not typically known for biting, they can do some damage with their beaks.

In addition, a well-intentioned animal lover may only do more harm than good by moving the bird. The most common reason a young bird ventures out of the nest is because it is fledging, and human interference does not help.

“It is a teenager, and it’s learning how to fly and be on its own,” Shisk-Saling says.

“You may see it and think it’s by itself, but chances are mom and dad are real close by keeping an eye on it — and you’re getting in the way.”

The only exception to the hands-off rule is if the bird is injured or in obvious danger, such as being stranded in the middle of the road.

“If it is bright, alert, and chirping, it is not hurt,” Shisk-Saling says.

However, if the animal shows none of these signs, it should be put in a dark, quiet and warm place, such as a box, and taken to a veterinarian or wildlife specialist. Shisk-Saling cautions rescuers not to feed the bird because it can cause complications, and the bird may already have a digestive tract injury.

“If it can’t wait a couple of hours to be fed correctly, it is probably not going to make it anyway,” Shisk-Saling says.

Occasionally, while moving around in the nest, a baby bird will stumble over the edge, or high winds and rain can knock a nest out of a tree, she adds. If this is the case, Shisk-Saling says that some assistance can be given to the animal.

“You can put it back in the nest, but if the nest is too far up, call and get advice from a vet or wildlife expert in your area,” Shisk-Saling says.

“It is also important to keep in mind that some birds pick up their young and carry them back to the nest, and the parents are not going to abandon the young bird.”

Another way to keep these treetop critters safe is to minimize their predators. Some types of birds, such as mockingbirds, are good at defending their offspring against predators. Others are not, and cat wounds are a common injury seen in wild birds.

Cats should be kept indoors, especially during spring and early summer. If your cat does venture outside, put a bell on its collar to warn baby birds that cannot move quickly.

Shisk-Saling says that being educated on how to handle — or not handle — wildlife will benefit both you and the animal. “If a baby bird does stumble into your path, simply enjoy its chirp without thoughts of taking it home,” she adds.

Pet Talk is a service of the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University. Stories can be viewed on the Web at

More socialization best for cats usually confined
Gloria Dauphin - New Orleans Times-Picayune

We often hear about the importance of socializing dogs, but it's just as important for cats. When I recently went to a friend's house to feed and visit with their 4-year-old female kitty while they were out of town, I was greeted with less than a warm welcome. Their cat, Gabrielle, has purred at my feet, but it turns out she wasn't comfortable doing so when her human companions weren't present.

This time, I was greeted by hisses, growls and body language that said she didn't appreciate me being in her home. I suspect the situation was compounded by the fact that her owners usually keep her sectioned off in one area of the house when guests are there, especially guests that may not be cat lovers. So when I entered Gabrielle's space, she understandably became territorial and wary of what she considered an intruder.

Shortly after this experience, Gabrielle had to deal with evacuating for Hurricane Gustav. The experience proved to be more than unsettling. When she returned home, Gabrielle was hissing and growling and even charged her human companions. They consulted a veterinarian who provided them with advice and medication to help ease Gabrielle's anxiety.

In the long term, the best help that Gabrielle can receive is more socialization. It's best to socialize cats when they are kittens, but it's not a lost cause when you're dealing with an older cat like Gabrielle. But gradual socialization is best when dealing with an older cat.

The Web site "Perfect Paws," which posts quite a bit of literature about dealing with aggression in cats, recommends allowing an adult cat to approach a stranger rather than the human trying to approach the cat. Forcing an older cat to meet a new person will frighten them even more. Simply giving the cat ample opportunity to approach a human works best.

It may take several days or several weeks, but the more chances the cat has to meet new people, the better. Just allow them to do it on their own terms. After they see that nothing bad will happen, they will develop the confidence to trust people, and confidence is the most important factor when it comes to having a well-socialized cat.

. . . . . . .

An LA/SPCA Adoption Affair will be held Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Canine Connection, 3440 Magazine St.

. . . . . . .

If you have pet-related questions or want to list information or events, e-mail; send a fax to 504.368.5108, attention Tail Talk; or send mail to 1700 Mardi Gras Blvd., New Orleans LA 70114.

Harley, left, is a 3-year-old, neutered pug mix and his best friend, Phoebe, is a 1 1/2-year-old, spayed Chihuahua. Their owner is ill and can no longer care for them; they must be adopted together. To meet them, kennel Nos. 565194 and 502812, or any of the other pets at the Louisiana SPCA, visit the shelter at 1700 Mardi Gras Blvd. in Algiers, 7 days a week, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., call 368-5191, or go to on the Web.

How To Have A Healthy Happy Cat
By ContentMart Editor

Giving your cat a simple monthly examination can help prevent potential problems for years, here's what to look for.

We all have the tendency to take our pets for granted, butyou're making a big mistake if you do so. Cat owners, inparticular, share the erroneous belief that their four footedcompanions know what's best for them and rarely thinkabout their pet's diet or health until the animal becomes visibly ill.

The truth is, smart as cats are, you're smarter! With minimaleffort - essentially a once a month home examination andyearly veterinarian exam, you can avert a variety of problemsand unnecessary trips to the vet, and keep your cat asfit as it ought to be for life.

1. Have you noticed any recent changes in your cat'sattitude or behavior, such as listlessness, restlessness,loss of appetite, aggression?

2. Does your cat's coat look dull or feel dry, brittle, orgreasy?

3. Are his whiskers short or broken?

4. Using your hand, brush your cat's hair backwards fromtail to head. His skin should be a normal grayish white.Is the skin a healthy color, or is it red and irritated? Isthe tail area greasy with sparse hair?

5. Also look carefully for fleas or any little blackflecks (the excrement of fleas) on the skin. Do you see any?

6. Does the neck, back or base of the tail show any lesions?

7. Smell your hand after running it through yourcat's fur. Your fingers should not have an unpleasantfishy, rancid odor.

8. Are you able to feel good muscle tone aroundthe sternum (breastbone)? If should not be soft orflaccid.

9. Do you feel a firm muscle mass when you run your hand down your cat's spine and over the ribcage? There should not be more than a pinch of fat.

10. Open your cat's mouth and smell his breath.It should smell clean and not have an offensive odor.Does it smell clean?

11. Look at the gums. They should be pink, not pale or white, nor should they be swollen, bright red,or bleeding.

12. Check the teeth. Do they look white and healthy?They should be free of tartar and not loose.

13. Examine your cat's eyes. Are they clear of filmand free of mucous discharge? Is there any crustingaround them?

14. Feel the inner side of your cat's thighs. Arethere any roundish bumps or swellings? These couldindicate enlarged lymph nodes and usually thepresence of worms.

15. Is your pet's stomach unusually distended?

16. Look at the paw pads. Are they smooth withoutdry, cracking lines?


For more really cool info on all aspects of Dog, Cat, Horse & Bird Care visit our site and take advantage of our extensive library of f r e e pet care tips & pet fun info.

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Fish Make The Greatest Pets
By: Jennifer Shircel

Aren't the children always begging for a pet or another pet?

You don't want a cat - there's that whole litter box thing. You don't want to train a puppy, plus what about when you want to go away for the night? Birds make such a mess and can be quite noisy. And then there's those "rodent" things.

When we found out we were expecting our first child we decided to decorate the nursery in tropical fish decor. Then we thought a fish tank in the room would be perfect for the "white noise" and for a nice little night light. So we bought a 10 gallon tank set that cost about $40 for everything but the fish. We had no clue about caring for fish, so we only got a few fancy guppies that were about $3 each. How cheap!!

Who knew we'd become addicted? Well, me anyways. We learned that guppies are live bearers, meaning that they have "live" babies instead of laying eggs and they can be all sorts of pretty colors. Needless to say, we learned a few things about raising guppies and haven't spent any more money buying fish (well, except for a few more different colored guppies and a bigger tank to start breeding our own)!

Fish are so easy to take care of and are rather inexpensive to keep. We clean out their tank a little bit each month and spend about $2 on food for them that lasts about 3 months. The kids all love the guppies - their pretty colors and especially watching the babies grow. I love the guppies because they're cheap, relaxing, neat, quiet and they teach the children about responsibility with having a pet.

So before you jump down their throats about not having a pet, tell the kids to consider some guppies. If you're looking to do some more research on them, check out . There are plenty of tips and people there that are willing to answer all of your questions.

Author Bio
For more tips on pets and more money saving tips, visit us at
Jennifer is the owner of - an excellent resource for all moms!

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