Homer the Blind Cat PLUS Clipping Your Bird

Dogs Get Skin Cancer Too

Skin Tumors are Most Common Tumor Found in Dogs

(WebMD) You might not give much thought to dog skin cancer, because your loyal companion is covered with hair and protected from the sun. But you should know that skin tumors, which may be cancerous, are the most common tumors found in dogs. Fortunately, when caught early, many cases of dog skin cancer can be treated successfully.

Not all varieties of dog skin cancer are caused by sun exposure, but sun damage to the skin can be a causative factor. All dogs have certain areas, such as the nose and the pads of the feet, where there is no hair to shield sensitive skin from the sun. Additionally, pooches with light-colored or thin coats are more susceptible to sun damage over their entire bodies.

Because some types of dog skin cancer, including dog melanomas and mast cell tumors, are fatal if untreated, it is important that you have your veterinarian check any suspicious growths.

Types of Skin Cancer in Dogs
There are different types of dog skin cancers. Three of the most common include:

• Malignant melanoma: Just as in people, malignant melanoma is a type of skin cancer in dogs that affects pigmented cells known as melanocytes. Dogs often develop benign tumors in pigmented cells that do not metastasize, which are called melanocytomas. These tumors are found on areas of the dog's body that have hair. Most malignant melanomas occur on the mouth or mucous membranes, although about 10 percent of the time they are found on parts of the body covered with hair. They tend to grow extremely fast and are likely to spread to other organs, including the lungs and liver.

No one knows exactly why melanomas develop, although genetic factors seem to
play a role. Additionally, trauma or compulsive licking of a particular spot on the skin may increase the likelihood that cells will multiply, thereby raising the chances that cells will mutate during the division process and become

• Squamous cell carcinoma: This form of dog skin cancer, which occurs in the epidermis, is often caused by exposure to the sun. Scientists believe there may also be a connection between the papilloma virus and the development of squamous cell tumors in certain dogs.

Although squamous cell cancers do not spread to surrounding lymph nodes, they are aggressive and may lead to destruction of much of the tissue around the tumor.

• Mast cell tumors: These dog skin cancers, which occur in the mast cells of the immune system, are the most common skin tumors in canines. Veterinarians don't know what causes mast cell tumors to develop, although there have been cases where they have been linked to inflammation or irritants on the skin. Evidence suggests genetic factors are often important, and the hormones estrogen and progesterone may also affect cancer growth.

Dog Skin Cancer: Which Breeds Are at Risk?
All dogs can get skin cancer, but certain types of cancer more commonly occur in particular breeds.

Benign melanocytomas are often seen in Vislas, Miniature Schnauzers, Doberman Pinschers, Airedale Terriers, and Bay Retrievers, typically in animals between 5 and 11 years old. Malignant melanomas on the toe or in the toenail bed appear more frequently in black dogs.

Squamous cell carcinomas tend to appear in dogs that are between six and 10-years-old. Breeds that are more likely to get this type of skin cancer include Keeshonds, Standard Schnauzers, Basset Hounds, Collies, Dalmatians, Bull Terriers, and Beagles. In general, dogs with short coats (especially those with light skin) are more prone to squamous cell carcinomas.

Mast cell tumors are most commonly seen in Boxers, and are also found with some frequency in Boston Terriers, Labrador Retrievers, Beagles, and Schnauzers.

Signs and Symptoms: How to Spot Skin Cancer in Dogs
Dog skin cancer symptoms depend on the type of cancer and where the tumor is located on your dog's body.

• Melanomas: Benign melanocytomas may range in size from very small to more than 2.5 inches in diameter. They appear on areas of the skin covered with hair and may be black, brown, gray, or red in color. Malignant dog melanomas tend to occur in the mouth, on the lips, and in the toenail beds, and pads of the feet. When dog melanomas occur in the feet, they often become infected, leading to misdiagnosis as a simple infection.

• Squamous cell carcinomas: These tumors are firm and raised with a wart-like appearance. They often occur on the abdomen and around the genitals. When they occur on the feet, they may be painful and cause your dog to limp.

• Mast cell tumors: These skin cancers in dogs are typically slow-growing and rubber-like. More aggressive mast cell tumors grow faster and may ulcerate, leading to the development of sore, inflamed areas on the dog's body. Mast cell tumors most commonly occur on the trunk of the body, though they are found on the legs about 25 percent of the time.

Treatment Options for Dog Skin Cancer
The treatment depends on the type of tumor and its location. Surgery is often the first step for malignant melanomas. If the melanoma cannot be removed in its entirety or if it has spread to nearby lymph nodes, radiation is commonly used. In these situations, the cancer may go into remission nearly 70 percent of the time, though recurrence is common. Chemotherapy is often used in combination with surgery and/or radiation therapy. There is also a vaccine that causes the dog's own immune system to attack tumor cells, which often successfully extends the survival time of dogs with oral melanoma.

Squamous cell carcinomas can often be removed surgically, with no need for radiation or chemotherapy. If the tumors occur in inoperable locations, photodynamic therapy and the use of a drug called piroxicam may be beneficial.

Dog mast cell tumors are best treated by surgical removal with or without radiation therapy, depending on the size and location of the skin cancer. Based on the grade of the cancer and the degree to which it has spread, chemotherapy and/or steroids may be used as well.

Gary Bogue: Nature: Some Special
Moments are Meant to be Shared
By Gary Bogue - Contra Costa Times

The poetry of the earth is never dead.

— John Keats,

English poet

Dear Gary:

The trail from the Don Edwards Wildlife Refuge to Coyote Hills is quite noisy as you pass over the approach to the Dumbarton Bridge. However, the farther you walk toward Coyote Hills, the quieter it gets, until after rounding several bends and climbing over a few small hills, you seem in a world of blissful silence.

Looking back, you can see the bridge traffic, but you can't hear it. So recently I'm in this silent world, when looking ahead, I see a white mass in a small slough off the bay.

The trail comes quite close to this, so as I approach, I see the white mass is actually a raft of pelicans, great white pelicans, all floating in tight formation in the green water.

Getting closer yet, I can see that their bills are rhythmically rising and falling, presumably feeding on something under the water.

I stand there, counting as many as 75 of these grand white birds, when I also notice that the serene silence has been compromised by the sounds of 75 pelican bills entering and exiting the water, swish, splash, swish, splash, swish, splash. It is a soft, gentle sound, like 75 babies snoring.

Joining my watch are about 30 lesser egrets, patiently ringing the slough like restaurant patrons waiting for a table.

Whatever the pelicans were feeding on then decides to move, and sure enough, the whole flotilla moves down the slough in unison, paddling and feeding in a wonderful choreography of motion and sight and sound.

I stood watching and listening for a long time. Aerobic exercise is tough in the face of such scenery.

Bruce Roberts,


Dear Bruce:

Once upon a time when I was backpacking in the Trinity Alps of Northern California, I came upon a beautiful little lake called Mirror Lake.

Just as you were fascinated by the flotilla of white pelicans, I was entranced by the stunning reflections of surrounding trees and mountaintops on the surface of the lake. There was no wind, and Mirror Lake had become a crisp, pine-framed photograph of the area around it.

I caught a movement out of the corner of my eye and turned to see a gray fox sitting about 10 feet away from me. The fox was also staring at the lake, obviously caught up, like me, in the awesome beauty of the moment.

Such moments are meant to be shared.

Thanks for sharing yours.

Having a heat wave

The weather forecast says we'll have a little heat wave starting today. Do you know where your pets are?

We're supposed to heat up into triple-digits by Tuesday, so now is a good time to start figuring out how you'll keep your pets cool while you're at work.

Here are some questions to ask yourself:

--Do your pets have plenty of cool water (not sitting in the sun)?

--Do your pets have a cool place to stay out of the heat while you're at work?

Do you know signs of overheating? (Includes excessive panting, glazed eyes, disoriented, vomiting, and/or a deep red or purple tongue.) If your pet has any of these symptoms, or is acting strange in the heat, cool it down in cool, NOT cold, water. Call your vet immediately for advice.

Don'ts in hot weather:

--Don't take your dog for a walk in hot weather.

--Don't take your pet in the car on hot days.

Some thoughts:

--Freeze water in plastic bottles so pets can lie next to them and keep cool.

--Multiple water dishes (in the shade) are helpful.

--Check pets regularly to make sure they're OK.

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What Does Your Choice of Pet
Say about You?
Seattle PI

Question: Why would the University of Oregon College of Business Administration be profiling 667 pet owners?

Answer: People with pets are major players in the world of business.

The American Pet Products Manufacturers Association reports in its National Pet Owners Survey that 62 percent of U.S. households now welcome at least one pet into their homes. These humans are fueling $31 billion in pet products, more than people spend annually on human toys or candy. Add to products the popular pet services -- massages, chiropractic, acupuncture, liposuction, gourmet dinners, and hotel accommodations -- and you get an industry that is vitally interested in what will make you buy that designer dog dish or French day bed. ("New Survey Shows America's Love Affair with Their Pets Stronger than Ever" by Tierra Griffiths and Julie Rowe)

So Oregon's College of Business Administration graduate students, under the leadership of Lynn Kahle, head of the marketing department, tried to figure out what your choice of a pet tells about you. With that essential information, marketers can appeal to your sensibilities and convince you that Precious really does need a plastic bowl with a lid that doubles as a Frisbee.

Here's what they found with their questionnaire:

--Dog owners tend to be more honest and forthright than most other people. They are loyal and religious;

--If you consider yourself to be a cat person, you probably are a bit of a loner yet have fairly high job satisfaction. You tend not to toe the line when it comes to the rules and rituals of an organized religion;

--People who are primarily attracted to fish as pets are more optimistic than most and not as materialistic or concerned about social status.

Kahle concludes, "A more thorough understanding of the motivations, values, and lifestyles of pet owners can help marketers design more effective advertising approaches, both for pet products and in advertisements for nonpet products." ("We Lavish Love, Money on Our Pets Study Reveals Psyches of Animal Owners" by Ranny Green, Seattle Times, 1993)

So the gathering of this kind of data is how pet commercials are targeted directly at what excites and interests you -- not your animal companion.

Well, we have a slightly different take on the subject. We think that not only do animals often reflect a person's psyche, they also mirror their souls, or the amount of love in their hearts. It's our opinion that a person who says, "I don't like animals," is experiencing a disconnect between the heart and the mind. Ask any animal lover and they will tell you: Animals are our hearts.

To take the Angel Animals "Pet Personality Quiz" and have a little fun, go to http://angelanimals.net/quiz.html

Choosing A Suitable Collar
For Your Dog
Simon Oliver - PetSourceUSA.com

Dog collars are an important accessory of man’s best friend – they include your dog’s registration tags, ID, and even leads (for leashes). When looking for the right collar for your pet dog, it’s nice to know you have lots of options. Here are some tips to guide your shopping. You need to find a collar that will fit around your dog’s neck exactly. And as long as this is the case, you can basically choose whatever color, pattern, or style you like.

For small dogs, pick out a collar that is neither too heavy nor too light. For puppies, a thin, leather collar or a soft, nylon collar is ideal. As for bigger, stronger dogs, wider and heavier collars are best. To make sure that a collar is the right fit on your dog, make sure you can squeeze at least two fingers in between the dog’s neck and the collar. It should be a tight squeeze though, as you don’t want to the collar to be too loose. Finally, you will want to cut off the excess length of strap because otherwise, the dog might chew it.

A snap-on type fastener is the most common replacement for buckle collars, because it makes for easy adjustment of a collar’s length. As for choke collars, they are cool looking but shouldn’t be used on younger puppies – gentler, training collars are better. Moreover, leather collars are long-lasting and are naturally softened by the oils of a dog’s skin and they come in a variety of styles, widths, and colors.

Nylon collars are washable and durable and are perfect for dogs that like to swim and for smaller dogs and puppies that need a softer touch. For bigger dogs, a nylon collar is okay, but it will need to be one with heavy webbing. There are other collars that suit very specific kinds of dogs. For surfers, there are collars that are made out of the same material as wetsuits! And for those impatient dogs that pull on your leash during walks, head collars are the best option and are often used in training.

A harness can come in handy with an anxious or hyperactive dog as well, as it is positioned around the dog’s chest and ribcage to prevent choking – some harnesses even allow you to buckle your dog into your car! There are all sorts of colors and patterns to choose from and most collars come with matching leashes. Because it is important for your dog to feel as comfortable as possible, put careful time and consideration into your search for the perfect collar.

Simon Oliver has an interest in Pets and Recreation related topics. To access more information on choosing the right dog collars or on designer dog collars, please click on the link.

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Buy an Automatic Cat Feeder

One of the advantages of having an automatic cat feeder is that using one will relieve you from having to ask someone to come feed the cat when you were out of town. A great advantage is that you will be able to provide regularity for your pet. While some cats can be left overflowing cat feeders and only eat what they need, there are other cats that are lacking in feline self-control. These cats will eat until the cat feeders run empty, they get sick, or both. At the same time, you don’t want your cat to eat what you have put in their bowl
right after leaving and have nothing for the rest of the time you are gone. The solutions an automatic cat feeders.

Automatic cat feeders tend to fall into two main categories. An automatic usually refers to a gravity type of system, while electronic is used to mean the type of feeder that will offer portion and frequency control. Whether you chose either an automatic feeder or an electronic feeder, all you need to do is periodically refill them and clean them. Either choice will make life simpler for you and providing consistency to your pet’s life which helps to reduce stress.

The electronic cat feeders are a great solution for dispensing moist or dry food, treats, or medications on a regular or timed basis. Automatic pet feeders are a perfect choice for dispensing only dry food but keep in mind, the food is always available, not regulated. If the pet tends to overeat, the electronic cat feeder may be what it best for your needs.

There is a benefit of automatic feeders for the people involved in the cat’s life. If the morning ritual is comprised of the cat jumping on the bed and meowing until you’re ready to get up and give him a meal,who own the cat.
You can notice as the cat understands the cat feeder does this job by itself, he will also soon realize he doesn’t need you to get up in order to receive a meal. It will take a little bit of a time, but eventually your cat may even
let you sleep in, on a day off, as long as the automatic cat feeders set up to deliver the meal they are waiting for.

Heidi Fleiss Loses Las Vegas
Dog Grooming Business
Associated Press

LAS VEGAS — Former "Hollywood Madam" Heidi Fleiss' Las Vegas dog grooming business has been shut down by a judge as part of a civil lawsuit, two days after she was sentenced to three years probation on felony drug charges.

Fleiss' Dirty Dog salon had been open for just three days when Clark County District Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez ordered it closed Thursday.

The ruling was in response to a motion filed by Jeffery Marvian, who claims his estranged wife conspired to sell the business to Fleiss in violation of the couple's ongoing divorce action.

Marvian's attorney, Shelley Lubritz, says she recorded a conversation in which Nickol Marvian admitted selling the business to Fleiss and porn star Kendra Jade Rossi behind Jeffery Marvian's back.

Information from: Las Vegas Review-Journal, http://www.lvrj.com

Even Cat People Fall in Puppy Love
Comments By Bill Geist - cbsnews.com

Bill and Jody Geist Find Themselves Going to the Dogs After Adopting a Rescued Puppy

(CBS) I'd always been a cat person - Timmy, Frosty, Burt, Katy, Peaches, Randy, Scooter, just to name a few.

But my wife Jody and I flipped over our daughter's new dog, Barkley, and decided we just had to have one, too. Our first … and therein lies a tale.

We spent weeks scouring the Internet ("Ooh boy, that's an ugly dog!"). Some were too big (like a bullmastiff - 175 pounds!).

Some too small. (A five-pound dog? "Nah.")

And some just … too much ("$2,500!?!")

But look at that face! This one seemed just right.

Except the dog was in a rescue shelter in Easley, S.C., and we were in an apartment in New York City.

But they offered free delivery! They instructed us to meet them at the Vince Lombardi Service Area on the New Jersey Turnpike, which sounded a little … shady. Jody could almost hear the "Sopranos" theme song playing as she waited for the deal to go down on a rainy dog day afternoon.

But everything was on the up-and-up. Debra from the shelter arrived after a 15-hour drive, her delivery wrapped with ribbons and bows.

Bill gushed: "You're cuter than your picture."

She doesn't look like our other kids.

Now, I knew raising a puppy would be a challenge, but I had no idea. You practically have to quit your job.

The struggle for a name was only the beginning.

Mongo? "Awful!" Banjo? "No, terrible." Cher? "Awful." Loco? "Loco is pretty good."

"Lisa Marie appeal to you?" "Never." A bark rang out. "She doesn't like it, either."

And so she became Daphne. "She was this long-legged, elegant dog," Jody said. "Daphne, just because Daphne's so elegant."

Your whole life's turned upside down. The dog is fighting with the cat who's been hiding in the closet for four weeks; the dog is barking at all hours, and there are guys hauling our carpets out to be cleaned.

You have to get your dog out early - or suffer the consequences.There are always some tense moments in the morning waiting for the elevator, 'cause when you gotta go, you gotta go.

And you are not alone. All manner of dogs and owners congregate in the park each morning when dogs can romp and wrestle unleashed.

"You're off the hook," Bill said, unleashing Daphne, who runs, barks, wrestles.

"The minute you get a dog, it's like living in a small town and knowing everybody on the street," said the owner of Fred. "And knowing the neighbors, it's great. You turn into Fred's mom or Daphne's dad. Everybody knows dog's names, not people's."

Well put, Fred's mom. There's Ollie and Jersey, Tosca and Aspen, Millie and Buttons, Joker, Sammy, Toby, Hudson and Apollo, just to name a few. The gang's all here!

Of course socializing is not the primary reason we're up.

At first we had to walk her for up to two hours to get any results, six times a day! You do the math.

You know how cats have litter boxes and babies have diapers? Dogs don't.

You find yourself doing things you vowed you'd never do.

What's it worth to have someone else handle the job? Priceless - and that's what Brian and Randy call their dog service. Walking 12 dogs this morning, at $15 each, they're really cleaning up, so to speak.

They also provide doggie day care - in a Manhattan apartment, sometimes with live entertainment. They must have very understanding (or hearing-impaired) neighbors.

Daphne arrived untrained. We tried instructional videos.

Come. Daphne. Come. Come to me. Sit and stay. Get my slippers and pipe. Fetch Get the newspaper. Roll over.

Hmm. The dog may be deaf.

But clearly, professional help was needed. With private sessions costing $125 an hour we checked out a class conducted by Phyllis of the Follow My Lead training academy.

Bill and jody and daphne watched as phyllis taught.

"Think there's hope for her?" Bill asked.

"I think, probably," Phyllis said. "I think probably - if her owners learned a few tricks."

As first dog owners, we had an immediate need for lots of dog stuff.

We hit Zoomies, a dog boutique in New York's West Village, where dog beds can run $250. Dog jackets, like an all-weather coat - part of Zoomies' sport line - run $50 to $120.

Susan from Zoomies thought Daphne needed a whole wardrobe - and, face it, she did look marvelous in everything.

They also sell biscuits. "We have the first biscuit bar for dogs in New York," Susan said. "We have 15 flavors, whether they be organic or natural. There's no sugar, no salt, no butter. Just try a biscuit, for example. Smell, this is gingerbread . . . "

Dogs can share them with their humans - just don't eat too many of them.

Funny how a practically free shelter dog can wind up costing a fortune.

Now our fashionable young girl-about-town needed to be properly quaffed.

You have to make an appointment at the renowned Tomy Magueri Dog Salon two weeks in advance. Magueri's been called "the Vidal Sasoon of dog grooming," and has brought his art to dogs in Rome and Vegas (all of which scared me, frankly).

If I go home and she looks like a show poodle I'm going to get kicked out of the house.

I didn't want Tomy dying her blue or anything.

"We like the 'shabby chic' look," Bill told Magueri. Daphne was treated to a nice oatmeal bath.

There were a few alarming moments like when Daphne tried to get off the table once Magueri started drying her.

But she looked fabulous . . . so good I felt like I needed an oatmeal bath to be seen with her.

Daphne, I don't think we're in Easely, S.C., anymore.

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Lessons from a Blind Cat

Gwen Cooper's Homer can't play the piano like feline Internet sensation Nora. You won't find him among the frolicking cats on icanhascheezburger.com. But he can use the toilet when the mood strikes and otherwise gets around pretty well for a critter whose infected eyes were removed two weeks after birth.

Besides, Homer is now on the cover of a bestselling book. Take that, Nora! Cooper's Homer's Odyssey: A Fearless Feline Tale, Or How I Learned About Love and Life with a Blind Wonder Cat (Delacorte, $20) hit The New York Times Bestseller List on Sept. 13, landing Homer square in the paw prints of such literary giants as Marley the misbehaving Lab and Dewey the Library Cat. The good news: Homer's still around to appreciate accolades thrown his way.

``I thought I was violating some rule of the genre by writing about my cat while he was alive,'' jokes Cooper, a Miami native who lives in Manhattan but returns Friday for an appearance at Books & Books in Coral Gables. ``I thought, `Maybe this is the unwritten rule.' . . . I was worried that from a publishing perspective it might be negative. But it's really hard for me to endure animal suffering in a book or a movie or real life; so I'm happy to spare readers.''

A North Miami Beach High grad who spent five years working in nonprofit administration, marketing and fundraising, Cooper nervously adopted Homer almost 13 years ago from Dr. Patricia Khuly, the Miami veterinarian who had operated on the tiny kitten (and who also writes a weekly column for The Miami Herald).

Then in her 20s and running volunteer programs for the United Way of Miami-Dade, Cooper had just broken up with a boyfriend and was living in a friend's spare bedroom with her cats Scarlett and Vashti. A third pet implied more bills. ``Not to mention the social implications,'' her best friend told her. ``I mean, there are only so many cats you can have when you're twenty-four and single.''

Cooper's better instincts prevailed, however -- she grew up with parents who rescued dogs and currently volunteers at Ollie's Place, a no-kill shelter for cats -- and she left the vet's office with little Homer. Their relationship, love at first mew, forms the focus of the book, which opens with the aforementioned break-up and ends with a wedding (to writer and editor Laurence Lerman). In between, Cooper and her cats leave Miami Beach for New York City, survive the events of 9/11 and do the sorts of things cats and their people do.

``It's what I call a small story that isn't,'' says Susan Richards, author of the nonfiction Chosen by a Horse and Chosen Forever. ``What impressed me about the book was that she took on this blind animal. I think that to deliberately bring that into your life requires a special person, . . . and it was eye opening to see, in the same way you would see with any challenged human child, how full a life can be. It reminds me all life has a value.''

Author of the novel Diary of a South Beach Party Girl, Cooper found that writing about herself was hard.

``With a novel, you can just follow a narrative,'' she says. ``You get to the point where you're following a story where it goes, as it unfolds. With nonfiction the hardest thing to do is construct the narrative out of true events. It requires a lot of discipline in terms of things you put in. There are things you might like to talk about that become tangential. Using the device of the relationship with my cat to tell the story helped. Some things, while interesting and momentous in my life, were just in no way relative to the story of the cat. And I had a wonderful editor to grab the reins, to say, `You've gone way too far into your navel.' ''

In the most harrowing chapters, Cooper recounts fleeing her office in Manhattan amid the confusion of 9/11, crossing the Brooklyn Bridge with other panicked New Yorkers and struggling to get home to her pets. She was terrified that her windows had shattered and that the cats were in danger of death or dehydration, and her agonized quest to get home -- ``I was sobbing -- huge, racking, genuine sobs that took all the air from my body and doubled me over'' -- is sure to resonate with animal lovers.

``It wasn't like I was choosing to focus on my pets,'' she says now. ``They were turning away volunteers at Ground Zero. They had all the blood donors they needed. I didn't have a home; I didn't have clothes. There was nothing else I could have done. . . . And aside from the fact I do consider them my family, and it would have been devastating to me if anything happened to them, I feel responsibility. You don't say, `Something catastrophic has happened, so I have to let my pets die.' When you adopt a pet you become responsible for life.''

Homer has taught her quite a few things, she says.

`He taught me that the most unexpected relationships are the ones that turn out to be most meaningful. My husband is a good example of that! I was sure we were meant to be friends, but it unfolded differently than I expected. And Homer taught me the value of perseverance. Even wanting to be a writer, you get a lot of rejection, people telling you why your idea is not a good idea. You have to persist.''

As for his toilet trick, Homer performs it only intermittently.

``It's not a regular thing,'' Cooper laments. ``Last night he did it. I was brushing my teeth, and he came in and sat on the toilet, and I was like, `OK, I guess we're doing this now.' I always say if a genie were to grant me a single wish it would be to have a 24-hour period where all three of my cats could talk. I would have so many questions. The toilet thing would be on top of the list.''

Grooming Your Pet Bird

Every pet bird needs to be properly groomed. Normally, this involves clipping their toenails, their wings and providing it an occasional misting.

To clip your pet bird, you will need a pair of animal clippers, a towel, styptic powder and a helper. If there is no styptic powder available, you will have to use household flour because this is a good blood clotting agent.

Before you begin, put the towel over your bird’s head because if they get scared by what you are doing, there is a very good chance that they bird will bite you. When you put the towel over the head, see that it doesn’t obstruct them to breathe. It will also be a good idea to speak to the bird in a soothing tone and hold them securely.

The part of the toenail that will be clipped is the little hook that is found at the end of each toenail. Never cut any further because this will make your bird begin to bleed.

If the bird begins to bleed, apply the styptic powder immediately over the affected area and make sure the bleeding stops. Once you are done, return the bird back into the cage so it can calm done rather than being beaten by the bird.

As you can see, clipping a bird’s wing is very easy. But if you don’t have anyone around to assist or you are not that confident yet to do it yourself, bring this over instead to the vet for proper care and handling.

The next thing you have to do when grooming your pet bird is clipping their wings. The reason why you have to clip your bird’s wings is to prevent it from flying into mirrors or windows which could them a concussion. To do this, you will need again a towel, styptic powder and a pair of scissors.

To clip the wings, you will have to restrain the bird using the towel while leaving one wing exposed. Once the bird is secure, expose the wing gently until it is extended.

You will soon notice that there are two rows of feathers. The long row of feathers on the bottom half is what is used by bird to fly. From here, you will now have to decide whether to do a severe wing clip or a moderate clip.

The severe wing clip is done by removing all the ten long feathers at the end of each wing. The moderate clip leaves the first 2 weathers intact while removing the last 8 feathers.

There is another method of clipping the wings known as pinioning that happens to be a permanent method of wing clipping and this should only be done by a veterinarian.

Clip carefully so the bird does not bleed. If it does, pull it out so you remove the feather and the shaft then apply styptic powder. Once you are done with the first wing, do the same for the other because failure to do so makes the bird feel off balanced.

Lastly, mist your bird with water as this helps them stay sleek and smooth. This is a faster way of cleaning them if they don’t like taking a bath regularly.

Clipping the toenails and wings as well as misting are the proper ways of grooming your bird. These are chores you have to learn how do so you don’t always have to drive over the clinic.

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