Pets - Advice, News and Photos

Prevention & Treatment Of Pet Car Sickness
by Haley Thomas

Motion sickness is common in both dogs and cats, however most pet owners will readily agree that cats are the most prone to becoming violently ill while in a vehicle. Most cats will have some reaction to travel that can include howling, meowing, foaming at the mouth, vomiting and turning into nervous wrecks at the sight of the carrier and the car. Dogs, as a whole, tend to be more accepting of car travel and typically learn to adjust very well to traveling, even learning what the jingle of keys means. It is possible that cats can learn to enjoy being in a car, however most cat owners don't usually worry if the cat doesn't travel well as they typically are only in the vehicle when they are on the way to the vets.
One of the most important things to keep in mind is that puppies and kittens are the easiest to desensitize to being in a car, so the earlier you start and the more positive you make the first few car trips the more likely your pet will accept and even look forward to those outings. Get your pet, either puppy or kitten, used to getting into the car. With the car parked safely, hold the little one on your lap in the passenger seat or back seat, give a few treats and lots of praise and attention. Don't even have the car going at first, just get them used to the physical aspects of the vehicle. When they are comfortable with that, take very short trips, even just around the block, providing lots of treats and praise for just getting into the vehicle and remaining in it while you go around the block. Always have someone in the vehicle with you to hold and manage the puppy or kitten while you are driving, don't try to do it on your own. With puppies or dogs you can also make the park, beach or countryside a short stop on the trip, building in some exercise and a reward the dog is sure to enjoy.

Always make sure that before you put a puppy or a kitten in the vehicle they have had a chance to go to the bathroom. If you are scheduling the car rides, make sure they are at least one hour after eating and after the dog or kitten has eliminated. In addition don't allow the puppy or kitten to drink immediately before getting into the car, rather try to have them on an empty stomach to prevent any messes.

The puppy, kitten or adult dog or cat should always be in some type of a safety restraint while in the vehicle. This means a crate or seat belt, but never just loose in the vehicle. Dogs or cats that are motion sick or anxious will naturally try to crawl under the driver's legs or get up on their lap, posing a serious distraction and a potential accident in the making.

If you have tried everything discussed above and your dog or cat is still really stressed in the vehicle or seems to be sick while traveling, talk to your vet. There are some prescriptions medications that will help to relieve the anxiety by sedating the pet, which can help them overcome their fear. In addition herbal remedies are now available on the market if you don't want to use medications. Like all non-prescription treatments they are largely unregulated and may or may not be effective for your pet.

About the Author
Haley Thomas is an animal lover and communicator and an editor for - a resource for stylish gear and information for pets on-the-go, including pet strollers, car seats, totes, and ramps.

Tips For Frustrated Dog Owners
by James Jones

Learn everything that you need to know about getting your dog to actually listen to you in my free dog training newsletter.

Dog training is not really that hard. You have to remember that a dog only wants to please you. The problem is getting your dog to understand what it is that you want from him or her.

I would like to share with you today a few important dog tips, these are things that helped me along the path of training my furry companion:

1) Don't Give Up Because of a Few Frustrations: Dog training is not easy, and not something that your dog will magically learn overnight. It is extremely important that you keep this in mind and not give up when things don't magically fall into place right away

2) Praising Your Dog: Praising your dog for positive behaviors is all well and good, but I have found that I get the best results when I include actual food treats as well. Food really motivates my dog, and would probably motivate yours too.

3) Stay Away From Negative Reinforcement: If you hit your dog when they do something wrong, the only education you are going to give them is that they should be afraid of you. Please focus instead on praising when something good is accomplished.

4) Make Use of Body Language When Training: Dogs actually can read body language faster than they hear commands. A good way to utilize this is by pairing each command with a certain movement of your arm or hand. This tip really worked for me.

Training a dog is a wonderful experience, and does not need to be frustrating. I hope you will keep these tips in mind when you start training your dog. Good luck!

Learn everything that you need to know about getting your dog to actually listen to you in my free dog training newsletter.

Latest article on website: Dog Crate Training.

About the Author
James Jones writes regularly about pets related topics. I hope you enjoy this article.


Del Mar Surf-a-Thon - Part 1
Los Angeles Times

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Tips for Interacting with Shy or Fearful Dogs
by Nicole Wilde, CPDT

If you're like many people, dogs are like magnets. Before you know it you're at the dog's side, petting and cooing over that adorable fur-covered face. But what if you reach out to give a dog a friendly pat and the dog cringes or backs away--or worse, growls or attempts to bite? Unfortunately, many dogs are afraid of people, and even the best-intentioned motion could be interpreted as a threat.
Whether you live with a fearful dog, work with shy dogs in a shelter or rescue environment, or simply want to make your own dog or dogs you meet more comfortable, it is important to understand how human body language affects our canine friends. Learning how to use body language effectively will allow you to put a frightened dog at ease, gain his or her trust, and avoid misunderstandings. To that end, below is an excerpt from my book Help for Your Fearful Dog.

The following tips on human body language are applicable when interacting with any dog, but are especially important when dealing with a fearful dog. Adopt these mannerisms and teach others who interact with your dog to do so as well:

1. Let the dog come to you. If your dog is frightened, she must be allowed to decide whether or not to approach. Don't restrain your dog and force her to accept contact from others. Remember the "fight or flight" response; if you take away the opportunity for flight, your dog's choices are limited.

2. Turn to the side. Facing a dog directly is more confrontational than keeping your body turned partially or completely to the side; even turning your head to the side will make a frightened dog feel less anxious.

3. No staring, please! A direct stare is a threat in the animal kingdom (and on New York City subways!). It is perfectly fine to look at your dog; just soften your expression and don't "hard stare" directly into her eyes. Do not allow children to put their faces near your dog's face or to stare into her eyes.

4. Don't hover. Leaning over a dog can cause the dog to become afraid and possibly defensive. The one time I was bitten while working in a Los Angeles city animal shelter happened when I went to return an adorable, fluffy white dog to her pen. While placing her on the ground, I inadvertently reached over her equally adorable little pen mate--who jumped up and bit me in the face.

5. Approaching dogs by patting them on the head is ill-advised. Pet appropriately. Envision the interaction from the dog's point of view; a palm approaching from above can be alarming. I do a demonstration with kids to teach them how to pet dogs properly. The child plays the role of the dog; I tell the child that I will pet him in two different ways, and he is to tell me which is nicer. First, I reach my hand slowly toward the child's cheek and stroke it, smiling and softly saying, "Good dog!" Next, I bring my hand brusquely palm-down over the child's head repeatedly, while loudly saying, "Good dog, good dog!" Kids almost invariably like the first method better. If dogs could answer for themselves, nine out of ten dogs would vote for the first method as well! It's not that dogs should never be petted on top of the head, but that head-patting (or petting over the dog's shoulders, back, or rump) should not be used as an initial approach. It is wiser to make a fist, hold it under the dog's nose to allow her to sniff, then pet the dog on the chest, moving gradually to the sides of the face and other body parts, assuming the dog is comfortable. Likewise, a hand moving in quickly to grab for a dog's collar is more potentially fear-inducing than a hand moving slowly to a dog's chest, scratching it, then moving up to take hold of the collar.

6. Stoop, don't swoop. Small dogs in particular are often swooped down upon when people want to pick them up. Fast, direct, overhead movements are much more frightening than slow, indirect ones. To lift a small dog, crouch down, pet the dog for a moment, then gently slip your hands under her belly and chest, and lift.

7. Watch your smile. While humans interpret a smile as friendly, a dog might not be as fond of seeing your pearly whites. A show of teeth is, after all, a threat in the animal kingdom. A friend of mine once accompanied me to visit the wolves at the rescue center. She patiently sat on the ground, motionless. Finally, a large, black wolf approached to investigate. Unable to contain herself, she broke out in a huge, toothy grin. The wolf darted away as though she had raised a hand to hit him. The lesson? Save the dazzling toothpaste smile for charming your dates and accepting awards. Smile at canines with a closed mouth.

© 2006 Nicole Wilde

About the Author
Nicole Wilde, CPDT (Certified Pet Dog Trainer) is the author of seven canine-related books including So You Want to be a Dog Trainer and Help for Your Fearful Dog (Phantom Publishing/ She presents seminars worldwide, co-stars in the Train Your Dog: The Positive Gentle Method DVD, and writes a training column for Modern Dog Magazine. Nicole can be reached at


How To Spot A Sick Pet
By Jim Waltman

Your pet's health is no doubt very important to you. You don't want your dog or cat to be ill and just down-right sad. Of course not! That's why you need to make sure your pets are in proper health. But not everyone knows how to identify a sick dog or cat - and that's ok. Many people have pet health questions that they don't have the answer to. Pets are not like humans. Their illnesses are unique to them and unfortunately, they can't tell us exactly what hurts or doesn't feel right. That's why you need to look for signs that your pet might not be feeling just right.

Here are some signs to look for if you think your pet is under the weather.

Just not Him/Herself

One indicator of a sick pet is that he/she is not acting the way they usually do. Often lethargy (tiredness and/or fatigue) sets in when a pet is sick and your dog or cat may shy away rather than run up to greet you. Also if your pet isn't as vibrant or energetic, it's a good indication that something is not right. However, these signs won't answer your pet health questions. They'll just key you in to how your pet is feeling. When a pet is not acting his/herself, feel around his/her body and see how your pet reacts. If something is tender, your pet will definitely react with a "howl" or quick movement. That means a visit to the vet's office is necessary.


Even though pets are not like us, there are some indications of poor health that are similar to ours, such as vomit and diarrhea. These are two clear signs that something's not right with Fido or Mittens. This normally means that your pet has eaten something that has made him/her sick. In this case, it's common to see your pet eat grass. The common belief is that grass helps remove the "bad stuff" from your pets system, acting sort of like a laxative, so you might see your pet eating grass prior to spotting vomit and/or diarrhea. Normally if they just ate something that doesn't agree with them, the vomit and diarrhea will pass. However, if it persists, consult your veterinarian.

Fur Loss

We all know that our pets shed. We see the lumps of hair build all over the house that, at times, can be a bit annoying. However, if you notice large patches of missing hair, something is definitely not right. In some cases your pet might just be getting old and losing hair. However, this is not always the case. In some cases hair loss indicates skin irritations (scratching at itchy skin causing hair to be scratched away), cysts, ringworm, or an infection. Fur loss does raise a lot of pet health questions and since there could be a number of reasons, your best bet it to take your pet to the vet for some pet medications.

Discharge from Eyes and/or Nose

If there's unusual "goop" around your dog or cat's eyes or coming from their nose, you got a sick puppy/kitty. "Goop" normally indicates some sort of infection. If you notice such "goop", clean your pet's eyes/nose and see if it persists. If it does, there's something up and it's time to go see the vet.

Your pet's health should just as important as yours and your family's. The healthier your pet is, the longer he/she will be around to greet you when you come home from a hard day's work.

In many cases, the solution to helping your pet feel better is through prescription pet meds. There are places online where you can get pet medications for less. Before you by those meds for your pet, see what generic and low cost alternatives are available to you online.

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Understanding Rabbit Breeds in Choosing Your First Bunny
by Pet Rabbit Lover

As rabbits come in a variety of breeds, colours and sizes, you should understand more about rabbit breeds in choosing your first bunny. It is not easy to correctly identify a rabbit breed. Even professionals make mistakes sometimes.

Note that not all pet stores sell pure breed rabbit. If you are really serious about getting a pure breed rabbit, then you should go to rabbit breeder. However, in view that there are so many rabbits in rabbit shelter that need a home, why not start there first.

Bigger rabbit breed actually makes better pet rabbit for smaller children. Rabbits have very fragile skeletal and an active child may easily injure the rabbit. On the other extreme, you would not want a giant rabbit breed as they may take up too much space.

There may be near to 100 rabbit breeds in the world but the American Rabbit Breeders Association only recognised about 45 rabbit breeds. Among some of the rabbit breeds recognised by the Association is presented below.

For the small rabbit breed weighing from 2 to 6 lbs, the Association recognised the following rabbit breeds: American Fuzzy Lop, Britannia Petite, Dutch, Dwarf Hotot, Florida White, Havana, Himilayan, Holland Lop, Jersey Wolly, Mini Lop, Mini Rex, Netherland Dwarf, Silver and Tan.

The descriptions of some of the more popular small rabbit breeds are as follows:

American Fuzzy Lop
American Fuzzy Lop weighs from 3.5 to 4 lbs (1.6 to 1.8 kg). They have a variety of coat colours. They have compact muscular body, dense and coarse coat. Just like other lop-ear rabbit, their ears folded over to slightly below the jaw.

The Dutch rabbit breed is a fancy rabbit breeds weighing up to 5lbs. Breeders are always trying to breed perfectly marked examples. Miss-marked bunnies are always available and make excellent pet rabbits. The Dutch rabbit breeds come in various colours, black, blue, chocolate, yellow, tortoiseshell, steel grey, brown grey and pale grey.

Jersey Wolly
The Jersey Wolly rabbit breed weighs under 3.5 lbs (1.6 kg). They come in a wide variety of colours and have long woolly coat. They are also known as the Dwarf Angora.

Netherland Dwarf
This rabbit breed weighs under 2.5 lbs (1.1 kg). They were introduced into the UK in 1950. They are bad tempered, especially among bucks (male adult rabbits). However, the adult dwarf doe (female rabbits) are very docile and can make wonderful pet rabbits. They have short ears and are bred in a wide variety of colours and patterns.

For medium-size rabbit breeds that weigh from 6 to 9 lbs, the Association recognise the following rabbit breeds: Alaskan, Angora, Argente, Belgian Hare, English Spot, Harlequin, Lilac, Rex, Rhinelander, Satin Angora, Silver Marten and the Standard Chinchilla

The descriptions of some of the more popular medium rabbit breeds are as follows:


The Angora rabbit breed is one of the oldest breeds of rabbit. They are thought to have originated in Turkey hundreds of years ago and were initially breed for their wool. There are four types of Angora: English angora 5-7 lbs (2.3-3.2 kgs) long silky hair; the French angora 7.5-10.5 lbs (3.4-4.8 kg); the Giant Angora 8.5 lbs (3.9 kg) and up soft fine undercoat (wool), straight stiff guard hairs, and a wavy fluff with a guard tip in-between; and the Satin Angora 6.5-9.5 lbs (3-4.3 kg) very fine wool.

The English Angora is adorned growths of wool on the tips of the ears and front feet that are known as "furnishings". They have rich ruby red eyes.

English Spot
The English Spot breeds weigh from 5 to 8 lbs (2.3 to 3.6 kg). They come in white with black, blue, brown, gold, grey, lilac or tortoise colour. They have butterfly mark on the nose, colored ears, eye rings, spine marking (which is herringboned) and a spot on the cheek and a chain of spots along the body. They have long arched body like a hare.

The Rex rabbit breeds weigh from 7.5 to 10.5 lbs (3.4 to 4.8 kg). All the Rex rabbit breeds are of the same type - a graceful rabbit gently sloping up to well rounded hindquarters. They are good nature rabbits and make excellent pets. They come in colours of black, black otter, blue, broken group, californian, castor, chinchilla, chocolate, lilac, lynx, opal, red, sable, seal or white.

For the large rabbit breed, the Association recognised the following rabbit breeds: American Sable, American Chinchilla, Chinchilla, Beveren, Californian, Cinnamon, English Lop, Hotot, New Zealand, Palomino, Satin and the Silver Fox.

For the giant-size rabbit breed weighing over 11 lbs, the Association recognised the following rabbit breeds: American Checkered Giant, Flemish Giant (Patagonian), French Lop, Giant Chinchilla and the Giant Papillon.

About the Author
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