Camping with Your Dog

Dogs, Not Cats, Increase Risk
of Some Children’s Asthma
by News Hound -

Have you been wondering if having animals in your house might make your kids more susceptible to asthma? Recent research suggests that the answer is yes -- but only with dogs and only in certain cases.

Results of a new study indicate that in families with a higher risk of developing asthma, a canine presence may elevate that risk in children, reports Reuters. The study, led by researcher Dr. Chris Carlsten of Vancouver General Hospital in British Columbia, Canada, showed a three-fold increase in the risk of asthma for children who were exposed to high levels of dog allergen. Interestingly, neither cat nor dust-mite exposure seemed to increase a child's asthma risk.

All of the subjects had an increased risk of asthma due to family history but half of the group was placed on a special intervention program that began when the mothers were pregnant. Those mothers had to breastfeed for at least four months and then limit exposure to dust mites, pets and tobacco smoke, according to Reuters. Carlsten believes that the reason why those exposed to dogs had a higher level of asthma may be due to the high levels of endotoxin on dogs, a microorganism known to cause inflammation in the lungs. The study did not look at families with an average risk of asthma so these findings may not apply to those subjects.

So should you avoid bringing home a puppy? Carlsten doesn't believe the study's findings, which were reported in Pediatric Allergy and Immunology, are definitive enough to make that recommendation. Instead, families should base the decision on their desire to have a pet.

What do you think? Is having a dog worth the possibility of increasing your child's risk of asthma? Even slightly?

Ask Dog Lady:
Bonding with a New Dog
Can Take Some Time
Monica Collins, GateHouse News Service

Dear Dog Lady,

My husband and I just adopted Bishop, a 1-year-old cocker spaniel, from a local animal shelter. This is my first pet, and I did a lot of thinking before we made this commitment. He's a very good dog -- housebroken, loving, smart -- and I have no reason to complain.

But I thought I’d bond immediately with this dog. Instead, I’ve been feeling depressed. It's not a constant thing. Sometimes I'm really happy about having him, and I always feel love and concern for him. But I have trouble sleeping and eating, and whenever we leave the house, all I can think about is how he's behaving while I’m away.

Is this normal? Will I adjust the longer we have the dog, or should my ease with him be more instant? Please help.


Dear Holly,

Call it “post-poochum depression.” The syndrome is very common.

Any new relationship comes with the inevitable strain of adjustment. Getting a dog prompts the next question: “What have I done?” Your dreams of a dog can clash with the reality of having a dependent creature under your roof. All that feeding, walking and training can make you yearn for the good old days when you were footloose and fancy-free. It’s a struggle to feel attachment to a four-legged critter. The scenario doesn’t unfold like an episode of “Lassie.”

The more time you spend with your new pet will cement your bond. The crucible will come. Dog Lady mistakenly closed her puppy’s foot in the heavy front door of her building. The loud yelp somehow pierced the heart. The pup was fine; Dog Lady was never the same. Stumbling through all this stuff is the journey of a new dog owner.

You will inevitably have an “aha!” moment when you and Bishop finally connect in a way that seals the deal. If not – and give it six to eight weeks – you should go back to the shelter where you got the animal and talk to the staff about returning your dog.

Try to stick it out, however. When you finally feel that joyful tie to your pet, you will have reached a new level of human patience and canine acceptance.

Dear Dog Lady,

We’re picking up a male puppy in a few weeks and my husband wants to call it “Diogee.” Get it? D-O-G – as in dog. I want something else, such as Sparky or Sherman or Shorty or Shamus (I have a thing about “S” names). What kind of name do you think is appropriate? Who gets to choose?


Dear Shelley,

Choose a name together. Deciding a moniker for your new puppy should be a pleasant exercise, not an excuse to quibble. Inspiration might strike when you actually see the puppy. For now, there are advantages to all the names under consideration. Two syllables are always good for names because dogs respond to sounds rather than actual language. Two-syllable names offer possibilities for sibilance and wild nicknames, which all dogs deserve.

Monica Collins offers advice on dogs, life and love. Her Web site is Contact her at

Tips for Great Pet Photos

Most pet owners view their companions as family members, so it's no surprise that having that perfect pet photo of our pooch or kitty is just as important as having one of your sweetheart, your kids, or mom and dad to show off to others. Here are a few tips on how to get that perfect shot of your beloved pet.


Most of us take photos for fun, not as a profession, so our equipment can be pretty basic. Although you may only have a point and shoot camera, you can get pretty nice pet photos by making sure you have the best lighting possible.

Natural outdoor light is the best. If you can't photograph your pet outside, pick a spot indoors that provides plenty of natural lighting. Early morning or late evening is best for natural light.

Don't use a flash as it is too harsh and will cause the dreaded "red eye." If you have a red eye filter on your camera, use it.

It's best to photograph on an overcast, but bright day instead of a sunny day. Direct sunlight will be too bright and there will be too much contrast between light and dark features. If you do photograph on a sunny day, be sure to find a shady spot to take your photos.

An exception to the no-flash and no-direct-sunlight rule: some very dark-coated animals might do well with a flash or sunlight to bring out the different shades and textures in their hair. Also, if it's difficult to get your animal to sit still, you may want to use the flash. If you can adjust it, try it at the lowest setting and be sure to turn off the auto red-eye feature which delays the flash.


Get down to your pet's level. They're a lot shorter and smaller than we are, so don't be in a position where you are pointing your camera down toward them. Sit or crouch down, or even lie down to get the best shot.

Don't be afraid to fill the frame with your pet. Zoom in for tight head shots or make sure their whole body fills the frame.

Keep the background in mind. You probably don't want to shoot your all-black cat on a dark couch. Solid colors are usually a better choice than very textured or multi-colored backgrounds because they can distract from the star of the pet photo.


I'm sure we all see our pets as having different expressions. Try to capture that special look only your companion has by making sure he or she is comfortable, relaxed, and having fun. This shouldn't be an ordeal for them.

You can get your pet's attention by using their favorite treats and toys, or making silly noises to them.

Don't forget that candid shots can be the best ones. Let your pet loose to do what he/she wishes with a toy, with a treat, or with an animal or human friend. If you can, increase the ISO settings of your camera to a fast shutter speed to better capture your animal in motion. This may increase graininess in the photo, but you will have captured the shot.

If your camera's various sounds (beeps) distract your pet, turn the audio alerts off.
Experiment! Try different angles. Use unusual props or backgrounds.


As with anything pet-related, you have to practice a lot of patience. Be gentle and have a happy attitude about what you're doing. If you pet just doesn't want to cooperate, just end the session and try another time. With some practice, and trial and error, you'll be able to produce a pet photo you'll be happy to show off.

Send in your best tips for taking great pet photos.

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Pet First Aid Kit Contents

Pet owners never want to think that anything could happen to our pets. We are sure that nothing ever will, and that we don't need to worry about it, or if anything does happen, that we can just rush them to the vet's office and they can take care of our beloved animals.

Well, as a professional pet sitter, we need to be prepared for anything that can happen. Remember, you will not always be near a vehicle to transport your pet right away and you may not be able to get them to a vet safely if they have not had pet first aid administered first.

Admininstering pet first aid will give your pet a better chance at coming through an incident than a pet that has not had first aid before transport to your veterianarian.

You need to have a pet first aid kit with you at all times in your home, and whenever you go anywhere with your animals. You never know what may happen.

Pet First Aid Kit Contents

Dressings & Bandages

1. Adhesive Tape (1 inch roll)
2. Guaze pads (3 or 4 inch squares)
3. Guaze rolls (2 inch for small dogs, 3 inch for big dogs)
4. Triangular bandages
5. Individually wrapped Sanitary Napkins


1. Digital Thermometer (check battery twice a year)
2. Scissors (blunt end)
3. Tweezers
4. Eye Dropper
5. Syringe (12cc with needle removed)

Ointments, Disinfectants & Medications

1. Antihistamine (gel caps in blister pack, poke hole with safety
pin and squirt into pet's mouth)
2. Antibiotic (triple) (ex. Neosporin)
3. Hydrogen Peroxide (3%)
4. Mercurochrome
5. Vinegar or Baking Soda (for neutralizing burns caused by acid)
6. Activated Charcoal (for absorbing poisons)
7. Petroleum Jelly (lubricant for thermometer)
8. Kaopectate
9. Chemical Ice Pack

Misc. Equipment and Supplies

1. Small Flashlight
2. Needle Nose Pliers
3. Q-tips
4. Betadine Solution
5. Razor Blades
6. Extra Leash and Collar
7. Muzzle
8. Plastic Bags (for clean up or samples)
9. Permanent Marking Pen
10. Towel or Blanket (big enough to use for transport)
11. Latex, Nitrile or Rubber Gloves
12. Photo of You with Your Pet

You can fit the basics in a fanny pack and carry it with you whenever you take your dog for a walk. The larger items can be a part of your vehicle pet first aid kit, and your home pet first aid kit.

You should also take a Pet First Aid and CPR class so you know exactly what to do in a situation, and how to properly use your first aid kit. The Woof Pack offers local training and certification. Go to to check for the training schedule.

If you are not in the local area, go to to find a Pet First Aid Trainer in your area.

Reference: Pet First Aid and Care Handbook
Author Thom Somes
Pet Tech, Pet First Aid Training Center

Hints From Heloise

A Tricky Treat

Dear Heloise: A friend has dogs that must be on SPECIAL FOOD DIETS because of severe food allergies. If they eat the wrong thing, it can make them sick, so that special treat a neighbor might give could cause misery for the dog later. A kind gesture can lead to serious allergic reactions and possibly death. -- Kristina from Ohio

This is very true! Our little miniature schnauzer, Cabbie, also is on special dog food because she has had two very serious bouts with pancreatitis. It can be triggered by eating a lot of high-fat foods, such as cheese, a fatty piece of meat, etc. -- Heloise


Dear Heloise: I own two Persian cats; thus, bundles of hair! The most ecologically friendly method of hair removal from furniture and rugs is an old wet washcloth vigorously rubbed across the hair-laden surface in one direction, then extracted and rubbed again! -- Bette, via e-mail


Dear Readers: Judith Weinstein of Flemington, N.J., sent in a photo of her white German shepherd, Archimedes (Archie), getting a drink of water from a water sprinkler!

To see Archie in battle, go to -- Heloise


Dear Heloise: We have had a lot of snow, which has made it difficult for us to make the trek outside to fill bird feeders.

Using an umbrella-type clothesline (attached to our deck) and two-sided hooks, I was able to grab the feeders and suet packs on the line's aluminum rods. Keeping the deck and railings cleared of snow makes it easier for the birds to land.

Laying down old baking pans with food is a treat for the ground feeders. We winter our gas grill on the deck. Putting food in the drip pan under the gas grill allows the birds to eat under cover. We also get the advantage of viewing the birds. -- K.W.E. in Maryland


Dear Heloise: I own a pet shop. I am frequently asked how to keep cats out of potted plants or flower beds. My hint is to use small lava stones as mulch on top of the dirt. They are light and, of course, allow water to flow through, but cats hate to step on them. Lava stones can be found at many garden centers. -- Sheila Crane, San Antonio


Dear Heloise: We found that we could reduce the success rate of our cat's hunting trips by adding a second bell to his collar. Although most cats can learn to move in such a way that a single bell stays silent, there is no way they can keep two bells from ringing. One or the other will ring and warn their prey. -- Marilyn in Florida

Advice and Boxer Dog
Training Tips and Ideas
By : Jack Johnson -

Asserting your dominance over the dog and establishing yourself as the leader is critical in making sure your dog is well behaved and listens to commands when given.

Raising a happy and healthy dog lies in your obedience training; not only will they understand their role in the household, but they will abstain from negative behaviors such as chewing household items, jumping on visitors that enter your home, or using the bathroom inside the home.

Let's say, for example that you are interested in training a Boxer dog; if this is the case, you will need to specifically look into techniques for training Boxers as there will be some Boxer training techniques that will be more successful than other general ones.

The boxer breed is very protective of his family and essentially considers this his primary function in the household; for effective Boxer dog training, you will need to keep this in mind. Boxers are actually a very playful breed, though many people consider them instinctively hostile dogs, which couldn't be further from the truth. As a result of their physical appearance, it is generally misunderstood that these dogs would attack you as soon as play with you. However, without proper training, this could be actually be a likely scenario.

Boxers are very intelligent dogs which means they can be a bit unwilling to undertake training, but it also can be very useful. You will have to be very patient and very diligent when training your boxer, because there will be moments that he will openly defy your command to do or not to do something, and he will continue to do what he wants, however, in this case you will have to take the steps to give him no other choice. It is always important to exercise patience during these circumstances to keep things positive. Boxer dog training should begin by the time the puppy reaches six weeks of age so that the dog understands your role as the leader from the beginning; as he matures, continue the training by introducing playful methods, making sure to increasingly introduce socialization to your routine; the Boxer is more likely to follow the training if you provide stimulating ways of capturing his attention.

Socialization is the main direction of boxer training. Boxers have the potential of being very friendly pets, but they must be shown how to do so. Boxers have to get acclimated to being in the company of other dogs and humans. The most effective approach to accomplishing this is signing up for training courses. In doing so, your boxer will receive his training with other dogs.

Once the boxer has hit 13-16 weeks of age, that is when you will need to undergo the real serious boxer dog training. Step one is to let your dog know you are the boss. Dogs misbehave or ignore their owners because they don't think they are going to be punished for their actions.

Sometimes you may feel overwhelmed by the task of boxer dog training. If you begin to feel this way, there are professional boxer dog trainers that you can employ. Enlisting the help of a professional will make you feel less stressed and help you begin to relax with your boxer. You can either train your boxer dog yourself or hire someone who professionally trains boxers. Either way, boxer dog training is important.
Author Resource:- Dog training is designed to increase the pet owner's satisfaction with their pet. James is a consultant who specializes in dog training methods He can also concentrate on puppy training. Check out his site and look into his training product reviews; you can also read up on some helpful tips and a free guidebook for dog training:

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What's Your Pet Ingesting?
Likely More Than You're Putting
in the Cat Bowl or Dog Dish
Anne Godlasky, USA TODAY

A new Harris Interactive survey* of pet owners found out the following about our four-legged friends' home habits:

•Eating crumbs off the floor: 77% of dogs and cats do it.

•Pressing noses against windows: About half do.

•Drinking from the toilet: 23% of cats and 16% of dogs partake of this dubious little pleasure.

Just normal canine and feline behavior, nothing wrong there, right? Maybe not if the animals are also ingesting chemicals from household cleaners you use on floors, windows and bathrooms.

In 2009, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals received 4,143 calls related to household cleaners. Garden products (it's that time of year), plants and rodent and insect killers are also major culprits, the ASPCA reports.

Dropping certain foods and other things used by humans can also prove deadly, as we've written before, including common medicines and tobacco products.

As a way around some dangers, there are those who skip commercial cleaners for homemade "green" cleaners (check out readers' reviews of the stuff). Some vets even recommend going au naturale for flea and tick treatments.

If you think your pet has been poisoned or even if you're worried about flea product warnings, you can call your vet or the Pet Poison Helpline for $35 at (800) 21-6680 or the ASCPA Animal Poison Control Center for $65 at (888) 426-4435.

*PawSafe Household Cleaners commissioned the Harris survey.

READERS: Do you worry about what your pets lick and scarf up? Share stories of what they've consumed in the past and advice on how to prevent an accident.

Camping With Your Dog;
Tips and Advice for Vacationing With Pets
Lisa Nyren -

Camping is an excellent activity to do with your dog. Taking basic safety precautions will ensure the trip with your pet is enjoyable for you both.

Camping with your dog requires the same care and attention as camping with kids. Training your dog before the trip is key, and you need to be prepared and have necessary materials on hand in the event of an accident.

Training Your Dog
In any situation, a well-behaved dog is better than an unruly one, and camping trips are no exception. It is important that your dog obey basic commands such as “sit,” “stay,” “come,” “heel,” and “lie down” before you head out into the woods.

If camping is a regular habit of yours, start bringing your dog along early, when it is a puppy, so it gets used to traveling in a car and sleeping in unfamiliar places.

Pet Safety and Security
Camping can be a great experience for the whole family, pets included, with a little extra preparation. Here are some helpful hints for camping with dogs. Before you go, have your veterinarian give your dog a basic checkup to make sure your pet is in good health.

Ensure your dog is either micro-chipped or has an ID tag firmly fastened to its collar. You can also write your phone number with a permanent marker on the dog’s collar to increase the chances of your dog coming home to you if it gets lost.

Bring along items your dog enjoys, such as a few favorite toys. This will help your dog relax in new environments.

First Aid for Your Dog
Purchase or make your own dog first-aid kit to bring with you. Canine first-aid kits should include the basics of any first-aid kit: bandages, antiseptic, gauze, scissors, tweezers, etc. You should also have a current canine first-aid book. Ready-made first-aid kits are available at most pet supply stores.

Campground Regulations
No two campgrounds are alike and neither are their regulations concerning pets. Call ahead, review your destination’s rules for camping with dogs, and obey them when you get there.

Be considerate of the environment and of other campers and clean up after your dog. Also remember that some campgrounds, including those in national parks, require dogs to be restrained at all times, either in a vehicle, in a crate or on a short leash.

Use Common Sense
Consider your pet’s well-being at all times while traveling. Never leave your pet in a vehicle unattended for extended periods of time. Pack plenty of food and water and remember to keep your dog hydrated and cool in summer months.

Camping together can be an incredible bonding experience for your and your dog. By following basic safety precautions you can ensure the trip is meaningful and free of worry for both of you.

Pet Friendly Tips for
Hiking with Your Dog
Author: Kim Salerno -

It's no secret that exercise is a necessity for both you and your dog. We often forget that our dogs are pack animals and their origins are rooted in hunting, playing, and roaming all day long with their pack family. If you are already in the habit of walking your four-legged friend, you know that it's a special time for the two of you to bond as well as establish yourself as the leader of your domestic "pack". Why not shake up your routine a bit and kick your workout into high gear by taking your best friend for a hike?

Follow these 5 tips and your hikes will surely be a wonderful experience that you'll both enjoy together!

1. Know Your Limits (Yours and Your Dog's)

Does your current exercise endeavor consist of walking around the block a couple times? Then you may want to rethink that 10 mile hike you're mapping out. Not only do you need to be able to hike without difficulty, so does your furry companion. Start intensifying your walks by making them longer and include hills if possible so the two of you can build up your stamina. It's also advisable to take your dog to the vet just to ensure that he will be able to accompany you comfortably when you're ready to hike. Dogs are people-pleasers and they never want to let on that they are injured or in pain, so they will endure it for as long as they can.

2. Be Prepared

Once you've determined that your hike is a "go", whether it's a long or a short trip, make sure you have the following items:

- Collar and leash - Bring these just as you would when you're going for your regular walks.

- Proper ID tags - The tags MUST be legible and specify your dog's name and your current contact information. It's also a good idea to have a current photo with you just in case you get separated.

- First Aid Kit - Human first aid kits can come in handy in the event of a cut or scrape (for either of you). Throw some tweezers in it for easy tick removal.

- Vet's Phone Number - In the event that something unexpected happens, keep your vet's phone number with you so you can quickly find out how to best take care of your dog. You can never be too careful.

- Sunscreen - You both need sunscreen and they make sunscreen specifically for dogs. Light-colored noses are very susceptible to sunburns and dogs can get skin cancer just like you.

- Orange vests - Know whether or not you are taking your hike during a hunting season. Orange vests for you and your dog will make sure you both stand out.

- Appropriate Dress - When hiking during cooler weather, bring along an extra layer if your dog tolerates "clothes". For summer hikes, keep a cool, moist scarf or bandana that he can wear to take a bite out of the heat.

3. Bring Water & Food

Just like you need to fuel up and hydrate for a workout, the same holds true for your canine companion. Bring plenty of water and a dish that he can drink from (they make collapsible bowls for traveling ease) and offer it often along the way. A good rule of thumb is to bring 8 ounces of water for every hour you plan to hike (and don't forget to bring water for yourself!). It's best to keep him from drinking the water in streams or other natural sources, as these could contain nasty bacteria that will make him sick. Bottles of water that are frozen are also great to pack in case the weather is hot and can offer immediate relief to your pooch.

Food should be given on rest breaks or during bouts of less intense activity to ensure that you don't upset his tummy or cause bloat.

4. Be Aware of Your Surroundings

Plan your hikes on trails that are used often and provide a clear path; now is not the time to forge a new one through the wilderness. In most cases, you'll likely encounter the usual suspects of the wildlife world, such as squirrels and maybe a deer or two. Keep your eyes open for common canine offenders, including porcupines and skunks. These animals are not as easily scared off by your dog and may become agitated.

Familiarize yourself with what poison ivy and other unpleasant plants look like. Although your dog can't get poison ivy, they can pass it on to you, so it's best to keep them away from anything suspicious.

5. Mind Your Manners

The same rules you follow on your routine walks apply to your hikes. Have a "carry in, carry out" mentality, which includes cleaning up after your dog on the trail. Using a leash will ensure that other hikers, other dogs, as well as the flora and fauna around you will remain undisturbed. If you're both on a more leisurely hike, let others moving at faster pace pass you easily.

Hiking with your dog is a wonderful way to spend quality time together and enjoy the outdoors all while getting a great workout. You're guaranteed to have a fun and safe hike just by taking a bit of extra time to plan and prepare. Happy hiking!


Kim Salerno is the President & Founder of She founded the pet travel site in 2003 and is an expert in the field of pet travel. Her popular pet travel site features pet friendly hotels & accommodations across the United States, along with other helpful pet travel resources. Her mission is to ensure that pets are welcome, happy, and safe in their travels.

Feeding Your Pet Rabbit:
Practical Tips to Remember
By Christopher Lunsford -

Some rabbit owners make the mistake of thinking that buying a shelter is the only thing they need to do for their pets. Yes, buying a rabbit hutch is certainly a crucial part in rabbit care but this is just one among many other things. Take feeding for example. Feeding is very important because just like with other animals, rabbits also have special dietary needs that you need to meet in order for them to stay healthy and happy.

For one, you have to make that you buy the right kind of rabbit food. Here are some important foods that you should include in your pet’s diet.

Hay is the most essential part of your rabbit’s diet because this provides fiber that effectively aids in digestion. Grass hay is usually widely available so you can feed this to your rabbit most of the time. You can also add in other kinds of hay to give more variety to your pet’s diet.

Green leafy veggies
Two to three different kinds of greens are good for your bunny. Dark green leaves like dandelion, chicory, romaine lettuce, cilantro, and parsley are some of your best choices. It would be best if you can get organic varieties of these leafy greens. Before feeding to your pet, wash the green thoroughly in clean water. An adult rabbit can take in one to two cups of greens every day.

Pellets are not that vital to your rabbit’s diet. They are rather used as a supplement. Choose good quality pellets that do not give your bunny an upset stomach.

Fresh water
Like other animals, bunnies need fresh water too. Provide your pet with fresh water all the time using a heavy bowl or a water bottle. A water bottle is the more ideal choice because you would not need to change it as frequently as the bowl which can easily accumulate rabbit hair and other types of pollutants.

Healthy treats
Small slices of banana, cheerios, carrot, and apple are wonderful treats that your bunny would surely love. Raisins are also nice addition to this. If your rabbit is prone to digestive troubles, you can give basil or rosemary instead.

Aside from buying food for your bunny, you also have to feed it the right way. Here are some vital reminders when it comes to feeding your precious pet.

Don’t give fruit juice or candies. Rabbits may not be able to digest these easily and may cause upset stomach.

Do not force your rabbit to eat. It would eat on its own pace. Force feeding may stress your pet and as you know, stress can be fatal for these animals.

If your rabbit’s eating habits changed drastically, like if it does not want to eat anymore, you may need to bring it to the veterinarian. Watch out for other changes too. See if it is still actively running around its rabbit run or if it is still appears happy when you take it outside.

The right kind of diet and feeding habits are important to ensure that your bunny remains healthy and happy.

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Saving Space With a Hanging Bird Cage
Matthew A Roberts -

Cages can take up a lot of space in the home. This is fine for those with big spaces to spare but when in a house with limited areas, every square foot of free space is essential. For those who have not found an alternative, sometimes a functional room has to be sacrificed for the cage and its equally bulky stand. Luckily, there are hanging bird cages.

Cages can take up a lot of space in the home. This is fine for those with big spaces to spare but when in a house with limited areas, every square foot of free space is essential. For those who have not found an alternative, sometimes a functional room has to be sacrificed for the cage and its equally bulky stand. Luckily, there are hanging bird cages.

A hanging bird cage has the same purpose as any other ordinary cage. It is used to hang our beloved avian pets except without the bulkiness of a stand.

Some, pet, cages are tied to a chain and hung on the ceiling. Others are plastered on a solid wall. Still others are hung on a very thin narrow stand that does not take up much room.

There are several materials to choose from. There are wrought irons, brass, bamboo rattan, weathered wire and wood. These choices should make it easy to find something to match the decor of your home.

Hanging bird cages are ideal for small birds like parakeets or love birds. Remember that some birds will grow in time, so it is best to check with the pet shop or the vet what height and weight it will be when fully grown.

Birds should be able to spread their wings without touching the cage’s bars.

These cages are also ideal for decorative pieces. It can be used to hold potted plants, as accent garden accessories or just a conversation piece for the living room. When choosing, make sure to find a piece that truly speaks to you.

Not enough room in your home for a bird cage on a stand? You can save space with a hanging bird cage instead.

Author: Matthew A Roberts Source:

Many Bird Owners Wonder Whether
They Should Trim Or File
Their Pet Birds Beak
By: Lee-Ann Simpson -

Many bird owners wonder whether they should trim or file their pet birds beak. We as pet owners like to know we are doing the right thing by them, after all we are wholly responsible for each and every animal that we have. It is important to keep an eye on any changes in your birds beak, from over growing, under growing, discoloured, cracked, changing shape, becoming soft, becoming brittle, too shiny, improper alignment of top and bottom beaks etc, etc. Anything that is changing from what is normal for your bird is best to be checked out by an avian veterinarian. Dont wait until it is too late, as some problems are caused by diet and can be overcome quite easily, just by changing or adding different foods and introducing items that can keep the birds beak in tip top shape.

Our Quaker Parrot, Charlie, loves to chew on branches from trees that we place around the house, both indoors and outside. Once he has chewed all of the outside layer from them we replace them with new branches. He loves to climb all over the branches and chews to his hearts content, whilst it is very messy it also keeps him amused. We have different shapes and sizes of branches so as he has to open his beak in different ways. We also give him different textures of food, both raw vegetables and fruit along with bird seed that we purchase from good pet stores. We have a cuttlebone placed here and there but he is not very keen on them, along with calcium bells. Charlie is still only young, about one year old, but we are very aware that any bird can have a beak problem, so we keep a careful eye on him. Even when he is on our shoulders on our clothes protector, a bird bib we give him things to chew on.

As I said before many pet bird owners ask themselves should they trim or file their birds beak, well yes, sometimes it is necessary, but as always prevention is better than cure. Try to give your bird, whether it is a Quaker parrot, Budgerigar, Cockatiel, Parrot, Canary, Parakeet just to name a few, a variety of items including food that will help control their beak and keep them in a healthy state. If you are at all worried about your birds beak dont hesitate to take it to a veterinarian, an avian veterinarian if possible. The veterinarian is the best person to trim any birds beak and will show you how you can file it yourself if you ask them. If you want to trim the beak yourself please check it out with the vet first as there is a right way and a wrong way to do it. You can cause the beak to bleed and it can be very painful to your pet bird. You dont wont to hurt your pet bird, after all.

Article Source:

About the Author:
After purchasing a Quaker Parrot and getting tired of all the washing that goes with sitting him on our shoulders, I designed and made a bird bib to protect our clothing. The bird bib has been very successful in keeping our clothes free from bird droppings. Please feel free to visit our website at

Tips On Pet Friendly Hotels And Motels
Mary Hanna -

It is easier than you think to find Pet friendly hotels and pet friendly motels when traveling with your pets. Although many hotel establishments still don’t allow pets of any kind in their rooms, there are many that do. Most of the time there will be no extra charge for accommodating your family pet, but sometimes you will be asked to pay a small fee usually ranging anywhere from 5 dollars to 50 dollars. Pet hotels and pet friendly motels are extremely convenient for travelers who do not want to go through the hassle of leaving their pet to the care of friends, family or expensive boarding businesses.

When making the reservations you should indicate the breed of your dog, as some hotels have restrictions on the size and type. Another question to ask, would be if you were allowed to leave your pet unattended in the room. Be sure you understand the hotel’s pet policy so there is no misunderstanding when you get there. If you know the policies both you and your pet will be comfortable.

When you reserve a room at pet friendly hotels or motels, always ask what the policies are regarding pets, and whether there is a deposit. All hotel and motel pet friendly establishments will allow seeing-eye or service dogs no matter what their pet policies are.

Sometimes you can be charged a small fee, and other times you may be charged a deposit, which would be returned to you if your pet causes no damage. If you hate leaving your pets at a boarding shelter while you are traveling, take some time to find pet friendly hotels or motels along your route so that your beloved family pet members can stay with you.

Some pet hotels will require that you keep the animal in a cage in your room, and most dog friendly hotels insist that your canine is kept on a leash at all times when it is outside of your room. Most people consider their pet as part of the family, therefore their pet goes with them on vacation. The thought of their beloved pet cooped up while they are on vacation is just unfathomable.

In addition to the refundable pet fee some pet friendly places may mention that they only allow “Well-behaved” pets, so teach your pet a few lessons in manners before you decide to take it on your holiday. The luxury hotels like the Ritz Carlton and Onyx will treat your pet like a king. Your pet will be groomed and pampered just like you will be. So, go ahead and enjoy a lovely vacation with your family pet.

Try to keep to your pets schedule as faithfully as possible. Pack the pet’s favorite food and toys so he will feel comfortable. Just like packing for yourself, pack any medications or vitamins that your pet will need. Be sure to have your pet’s veterinary’s number on hand just in case there is an emergency. If you are in another town, your vet maybe able to recommend the services of a vet in the town you are visiting.

Make sure you have the pet’s identification which includes a contact number, the pets name and an immunization tag if applicable. Never leave your pet outside alone. He could be stolen or antagonized enough that he will bite. Always keep the pet hydrated, especially if you are in a hot atmosphere.

Use common sense when traveling with a pet. And, above all, be polite regarding other guests at the establishment.

Mary Hanna has traveled the world by Air and Ship while writing eBooks, Software Reviews and Practical Articles on Internet Marketing, Cruising, Gardening and Travel. Visit her websites at: and You can read more of her articles at

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