Can Dogs Eat Cat Food? PLUS Pet Health Tips

Bobcat and Fawn Find
Friendship after Fire

A wildfire in Santa Barbara, California last month helped forge some unlikely bonds. Rescued from the Jesusita Fire, a 3-week old bobcat kitten and 3 day old fawn became fast friends. The animal rescue in California brought predator and prey together. But these babies simply took comfort in each other’s company, snuggling under a desk at a dispatch office for hours.

The bobcat and fawn would not normally be placed together, due to regulations, but the rescuers had no choice. They snagged the bobcat kitten first, finding it dehydrated and near death. Later, they brought in the fawn and discovered they didn’t have a crate large enough for it. No matter - the kitten ran right over to the fawn, and the two became fast friends.

Thanks to the tireless dedication of volunteer efforts of the Animal Rescue Team, and the Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network, these two animals, and many others were rescued from the destructive Jesusita fire.

As noted in an Animal Planet blog post:

“All of these Santa Barbara area animal rescue organizations have put out a national plea for donations because of the overwhelming need for animal food, medicines, and space to house displaced animals. ART currently leases a 1.5-acre plot of land that houses rescued animals in enclosures on the property, which require around-the-clock care, and the organization is desperate to purchase the land. The morning after Di Sieno – along with an insanely cute bobcat cub and fawn photo – appeared on the Ellen Degeneres show – the landowner decided he needed to sell it and she’s concerned for the future of the animals she and her fellow workers just rescued. The WCN also seeks funds for their Oiled and Injured Seabird Rehab Center, and receive no City, State or federal funding. One of their volunteers, Nancy Callahan, runs W.I.L.D.E. Services which focuses on raccoons and opossums, had her home and facility burnt to the ground and must start over from scratch. After rehabilitation, the groups reintroduce rescued animals to the wild.”

Fire season is just starting, and with drought conditions in Southern California, there could be more wildfires in the coming months. If you’d like to make a donation to help the animal rescue organizations, follow the links above to the non-profits’ websites. Bobcat and fawn thank you!

Tips to Help Your Arthritic Dog

Buddy Beds® Makes an Orthopedic Memory Foam Dog Bed That Can Help

DENVER, Colorado –Dog owners struggling with the heartbreak of arthritis in their beloved pets, can find relief in orthopedic memory foam dog beds. Buddy Beds® has designed the ultimate orthopedic dog bed combining the pressure point relieving memory foam with a waterproof, breathable liner protecting the memory foam from liquids, stains, and odors. The liner keeps the memory foam anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, and hypoallergenic.

Canine arthritis is a painful degenerative joint disease. An estimated 10 million dogs in the United States have been diagnosed with arthritis, and 31 percent of dog owners say that bone and joint problems are an issue for their pets. Arthritis is most common in older dogs. Yet unfortunately arthritis goes undiagnosed since owners attribute the subtle changes in their dogs to old age or slowing down.

What are the signs of arthritis? Being familiar with the signs and symptoms of pain can help you determine if your dog may need veterinary attention. Some of the classic symptoms of arthritis are:

• Stiffness after laying down

• Lagging behind on walks

• Reluctance to stand, climb stairs, jump or run

• Stiffness or difficulty rising to their feet

• Limping/stiffness after exercise or play

• Slow, ginger movements

• Difficulty climbing stairs

• Difficulty jumping

• Inability to run

• They may even seem depressed.

Here are some important tips that may help your arthritic dog:

1. Ramps. Ramps and specialty stairs can assist in getting up upon/into higher places while keeping them safe. Those beds, stairs, furniture and vehicles can be insurmountable barriers for the arthritic pet.

2. Floors. Hardwood floors and tile floors can be slippery! Put down rugs or runners to prevent your dog from slipping and injuring themselves.

3. Orthopedic Dog Beds. Buddy Beds orthopedic a memory foam dog bed completely eliminates all painful pressure points! Give your dog the ultimate in comfort and support. Our waterproof liner protects from any accidents. Buddy Beds was Voted Best Pet Bed by Pet Age Magazine. Recipient of the prestigious Animal Wellness Seal of Approval.

4. Massage. Massage can increase circulation, flexibility, and sooth those aching joints and muscles. Check out professional animal massage therapists and qualified acupuncturists for a thorough treatment.

5. Exercise. Obesity is a major factor in arthritis. Moderate daily exercise maintains your dog's ideal weight while strengthening muscles and ligaments contributing to joint function. Don't forget to explore the many special diet foods available for weight loss and joint health.

6. Grooming Arthritic pets struggle with what was once routine hygiene. Help them with regular brushing to remove mats and tangles. Don't forget to trim nails that once were worn down by exercise.

7. Stressful Events. Limit strenuous activity -- even though they think they are still a puppy with a puppy's energy. Be aware of stressful events - loud noises, fire crackers, thunder, noisy parties and drastic changes in schedules.

8. Patience. Give him the extra time to climb stairs, get up from a nap, or get in the car. Give them the love and attention they deserve -- even if they are getting a bit slower.

An orthopedic dog bed can give arthritic dogs relief from the pain. Buddy Beds has designed the ultimate orthopedic memory foam dog bed.

The orthopedic memory foam molds and contours to the animal's body shape relieving those painful pressure points which cut off circulation. This foam uses body temperature and weight to mold to the exact shape for comfort, custom support, and maximum pressure relief. Buddy Beds™ uses the finest quality 5lb. memory foam in their beds.

The Buddy Beds philosophy is: Our pets are family and deserve the best! Buddy Beds strives to construct the premier quality dog bed on the market.

To learn more about these dog beds or read about the industry and customer accolades Buddy Beds has received, visit the website at or email

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875 South Colorado Blvd., Suite 701,
Denver, CO 80246

Can Dogs Be Fed Pork?
by James Glover -

I was always under the impression that pork was bad for dogs yet I see vets buying sausage biscuits for their dog. So is bacon, sausage etc... Bad for your dog? (Margaret Batting - Georgia)

Pork in itself is as harmless to dogs as chicken, beef or any other meat. However, there is a slight risk of your dog being infected with trichinosis by eating pork. Trichinosis, also known as trichinellosis, is a worldwide, food borne disease caused by an intestinal roundworm, uncommon in the United States. Both humans and pets who eat raw or undercooked meat of infected animals can develop the disease. Undercooked or raw meat of infected animals contains the roundworm. The disease can lead to muscle soreness and pain together with swelling of the upper eyelids in mild cases but can lead to more severe symptoms.

If you would like to feed pork but want to take all necessary precautions, it is recommended that the pork be frozen for 3 weeks to kill the parasite. The most important precaution is to make sure that all fresh pork and pork products are properly cooked. Other raw and undercooked meat should also be avoided, especially meat from wild animals.

Can Dogs Eat Cat Food?

My dog wants to eat the cat's food instead of her own food. Is cat food harmful to dogs? (monica rogers - Arkansas)

Many dogs prefer to eat cat food if given the chance because generally its higher in fat, which usually means its more appealing to the dog. If your dog is eating the cat's food in addition to her own, she will begin to become overweight and obviously your cat will lose out. Since many cat owners allow their cats to eat throughout the day this is a fairly common problem. It is highly unlikely that any direct harm will come to your dog from eating cat food, but remember that cat and dog food are specifically formulated for their species' needs. In particular, cat foods normally have higher quantities of protein, fat and fiber on a weight per weight basis and have less filling effect. Therefore, it is possible that your dog's general health could be affected if he were to eat only cat food over a long period of time

Which Human Foods Are Toxic To Dogs?

I am thinking of making homemade treats for my dog. Are there any ingredients that should not be used such as garlic or onion, etc.? (Reggie Finch - New York)

This is a great question. There are lots of human food items that are not good for dogs. Most would require to be fed in large quantities to have an adverse effect. In most cases the worst symptoms would be temporary diarrhea or muscle spasms, but some (such as chocolate) can have more serious consequences. Foods known to be toxic to dogs include chocolate, onion, garlic, macadamia nuts, green parts of tomato plants, potato peelings, raisins, grapes, rhubarb leaves, yeast dough, hops, coffee grounds/beans, broccoli and pips or stones from many household fruits.

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Sick Dog, Sick Cat - How to Help
By Hollye Clardy

Maybe your dog is sick or your cat is sick. Does it make you feel helpless and frustrated? It can be a lonely and challenging situation. Maybe you have a sick kitten or a sick puppy. This can be even more difficult when they look at you with those pitiful and longing eyes, almost pleading, "Help me".

1. Learn what you are feeding your dog or cat.

Is what we are feeding our cats and dogs causing us to have sick dogs and sick cats? Who would have thought that maybe what we feed our dog or cat can actually make our dog sick or our cat sick?

In reading the back of some dog and cat food labels, you can see "meat products" listed. These "meat products" can include: connective tissue (gristle), poultry feather meal, leather meal (like shoes and belts are made from), fecal waste from chickens and other animals, hair from cows, and hair from horses. How nutritious is that for our pets anyway?

Another consideration in looking at the food is the biological value of the food and how well is it absorbed. Those things definitely have a huge impact in the short term and long term well being of your pet. These two factors alone can cause dogs to be sick or our cats to be sick.

2. Change what you are feeding your pet.

If your dog is sick or puppy is sick, I hope you will being to educate yourself about how a dietary change can help them get better. What if your kitten is sick or your cat is sick? These tips can help you too.

When you learn more of the value of making your pet's food and the health benefits for your pet, you will be very impressed. Veterinarians who teach their clients about the value of feeding your pet a fresher, more natural diet report some amazing stories of healing for the pets.

Here is one example: (Names have been changed to protect privacy.) Sally was a dog 8 years old whose health had been declining for two years. She had foul breath, dull eyes, and very little energy. After changing her diet from dry and canned dog food, she no longer had bad breath, her eyes are shining again, and she "prances around like a puppy".

3. Help your pet make the switch to the natural, healthier diet.

You can make a gradual transition, which allows the pet's digestive tract to adjust to the new foods. You may want to begin with feeding the new food once a day for several days. Another approach could be to have them fast for a few days. This may be especially useful for those whose cats are very finicky eaters. This time without food can help your pet have a greater appreciation for the food, and the better advantage is that the time without food can actually help cleanse toxins from the body.

In conclusion, these are some "first steps" you can take to help your sick dogs or sick cats, or even your sick kittens, and sick puppies. Watch for more information on this subject.

Hollye Clardy is a R.N. whose interest in alternative medicine has taken her into the field of holistic and alternative care for dogs and cats. She is dedicated to providing high quality information to help consumers with their cats and dogs. or

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Dog Years - Human Years
Pet Care Tips

The life expectancy of any dog is commonly expressed in terms of dog years by us and it depends entirely on the dog's breed, size as well as the dog's surroundings. Various other factors affect the life expectancy of a dog. A dog's life span changes according to the diet provided to him and also by the number of medical problems the dog tends to face over the years.

The average life span of the small dog like Chihuahua is about 15 to 16 years, while medium sized the dogs like Border Collies have a life span of 10 to 13 years. It can be noticed big dogs like Great Danes live up to only 7 to 8 years. The calculation of the life expectancy of particular dog can be accurately done with the help of "size or the specific breed calculator", which is said to be one of the most accurate age measurement schemes available. The size or specific breed calculator gives approximate results about the dog's predictable lifespan based on the size as well as the breed of the dog.

It is generally assumed that, on an average, "one human year equals to seven dog years". This statement may not be appropriate, since the first two years are jointly represented by 18-25 years in such schemes and because the entire ratio cannot be generalized for all the dogs though, they belong to different sizes and breeds. An exact ratio of dog years vs. human year cannot be formulated. However, some obvious features remain similar between both aging humans and dogs.

It is generally assumed that the human equivalent of a one-year dog is supposedly fully grown by both mental and physical aspects. Dogs like humans tend to develop advance muscular features as they grow along with a similar mental development. Through a major dog study, it has been estimated for dogs of all breeds and sizes that, nearly "64 percent of dogs" were euthanized because they were affected with some kind of diseases. Only 8 percent of the total dogs live beyond 15 years and nearly 16 percent of them die yearly due heart diseases and cancer. Human lives are not terminated even if they suffer from rare and incurable diseases; and this is the main reason why the lifespan of an average human being is reasonably long.

The effects of aging in dogs is said to be dormant for several years. But like humans, dogs to undergo physical changes as well. The first sign of aging in dogs is said to be the decrease in its activity levels. The sleeping period in these dogs also becomes longer. The canines experience a drastic change in their skin condition, limb usage, appetite and they experience tooth loss as well. Their sense of hearing and vision also diminishes gradually. Older dogs tend to experience stiffness in their body. All these obvious signs of aging can even be found in humans. The human years are extended only because of advance modern medicine and various other drugs that are designed to deal with symptoms of old age.

Dogs and humans may not have the same physiology, yet some obvious similarities can be noticed when both species age. Dog years and Human years may not be directly related by some advance equation, but to the naked eye the equivalence of corresponding features of Dog years and Human years are quite visible.

Now that you know dogs grow old faster than we do, learn how to care for your dogs the best you can and give them a good life. They deserve it. Learn more at:

Pet Odor Air Purifier - 5 Features That
Make a Pet Odor Air Purifier Effective
By Debbie Davis

Pet odor can be a formidable adversary. You never know when your pet might have an accident, and many times you are unable to locate the spot, either because you can't find it or are unable to get to it in order to remove, clean, and neutralize it.

Using an air purifier for pet odor lets you stay ahead of the embarrassing smells that can result from inappropriate elimination, and here are 5 features an air purifier must have it if it to be effective.

Variable Fan Speed-Being able to control the rate of filtration is important. On a normal day, the low speed may do just fine. But on days when one mistake or multiple mistakes occur, you may need to increase the rate of filtration. Being able to adjust the rate from low, medium, or high gives you the most control over the way your home smells, letting you keep the air as fresh as possible.

Split Capacitor Motor-This type of motor is designed to run 24 hours a day safely and effectively. Continuous filtration is the secret to effective odor elimination. And not having to remember to cut the purifier on and off because of safety reasons is a great convenience. Having the purifier on continuously eliminates surges of power use, saves energy and money, and assures that your smells fresh and clean regardless of what has happened there while you were away.

Effective Filter for Odor-Make sure it has a filter that is specifically designed for odor removal, and more specifically for removal of pet urine odor. This means you're covered for whatever kind of odor your pet produces. And should you add more of the same or a different kind of pet, your home has the best chance of remaining clean and fresh.

Flexible Placement-Your purifier should be able to take a back seat to your home decor by needing only a few inches of clearance from any wall. Avoid cleaners that must be placed in the center of the room to operate effectively. This flexibility is important because it allows you to use your floor space as you choose.

HEPA Filter-Even though you are probably most interested in removing odor, airborne pet hair and dander are probably also concerns. Having one of the filters in your cleaner be a HEPA filter means that it will remove airborne particulates such as hair and dander down to .3 microns. This means you can effectively remove both odors and particles from the air with one cleaner rather than having to purchase multiple cleaners. This saves money and space.

The added bonus of this type of filtration is that not only will it eliminate pet related particulates, but normal household particles that are airborne such as dust, dust mites, mold and mildew spores, bacteria and viruses. This type of filter makes your home a healthier place for both you and your pets.

An excellent HEPA air purifier to remove pet odor from your air is offered by the Pet Machine Air Purifier See it now at

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Choosing a Snake As a Pet
is a Big Decision
By Anika Woods

Snakes are different. They are not your usual kind of pets. So choosing a snake for a pet requires a special kind of person and family to take care of them. This is not your cute bunny or friendly pup that we are talking about. Snakes are different, they are regal, they are majestic, and they are different. Unless you and the rest of your family are prepared for the challenge and responsibility, you should not choose a snake for a pet. First of all you need to be prepared to deal with rats and mice. This is the preferred diet of snakes. You may get lucky and get yourself a snake that thrives well on eggs, but by and large this may not happen.

First of all snakes are cold blooded creatures, and therefore need more care to survive. Snakes crawl, and sometimes they slide or slither sideways. Once they do this, it becomes difficult to keep track of them and this can be dangerous.

You need to choose a snake that has a docile nature and does not bite, plus it is not a fussy eater. They should not grow to a huge size which will make them difficult to keep, and should not get snappish or ill when kept in captivity. Given below are four types of snakes that fit these criteria.

Corn Snake : The adult corn snake does not grow over 6 ft in length, it is docile and can be easily tamed. It does not fuss and will eat frozen rodents that have been thawed and given. If you feed it regularly and look after it, it will live a healthy and long life. Corn snakes come in various colors like snow, blood red, pewter and even multicoloured ones are found.

Kingsnake: There are many varieties of Kingsnakes and most of them are good as pets. Grey banded Kingsnakes, Mountain Kingsnakes and Florida Kingsnakes are popular as pets. These rarely grown beyond 6 ft and eat well. They do well in captivity too. They can be found in multicoloured and striped varieties. The grey banded one is very popular.

Gopher Snake: Extremely easy to keep. Once you raise a gopher snake by hand they become very tame and easy to handle. They are excellent feeders and so they give no problems and are healthy. They go slightly over 6 ft when fully grown. They are very manageable and not at all dangerous. They do not come in many colors but are a delight to behold.

The Ball Python: An adult ball python rarely grows over 5 ft in length. They are docile and very reluctant to bite. They do not need much space and do well in captivity. Some ball pythons are finicky about food. You may have to make regular trips to the pet store to get them live rodents to eat. Other than that, they make excellent pets.

It is not easy taking care of a snake. Before committing to keep one, read books about snake care, overcome your reluctance to handle rodents dead and alive on a regular basis and also learn how to clean a snake cage. Only then should you keep a snake as a pet.

Making the decision to choose snakes as pets should be taken very seriously and not made lightly. Visit our site for essential information on keeping pet snakes

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