Tag: Cats

2017 Popular Pet Name Predictions from Pet Nanny!

Happy 2017! Each year claims a new style or trend to define it – and that includes popular pet names! If you’re looking to pick-up (or adopt!) a new furbaby this year check out our one-stop-shop for what are sure to be the most chosen names of 2017!

You got a name for me?

 Pet Names for 2017

  • Go Viking with strong names like Thor, Loki, or Asgard. Or their girl counterparts of Freya, Hilde, or Astrid.
  • How about your favorite pop culture icon? Living or recently passed are sure to be hot this year: Bruno, Bowie, Prince, Lou, Drake…
  • Are you a football fan? How about LeBron, Love, or Peyton?
  • With a remake of Beauty and Beast hitting the theaters this Spring, pick a Disney name! Belle, Beast, Gaston, Major, Pluto, Merryweather, Nala, Bambi…
  • We’re sure to see some names inspired by the latest Star Wars film from late 2016. Try out Ezra, Kylo, Hera, Mace, Rex, Rey… and of course the classic – Leia and Luke
  • Science Fiction will rule 2017 so don’t be afraid to break out your “nerdy” side! Nebula, Gamora, Gallifrey, Zelda, and Scully
  • It may be 2017, but some names are classic and timeless – Molly, Bear, Lucy, Duke, Max, Rex, Ruby, and Ali.
  • Politics may be a hot button issue, but expect to find pets whose names reflect the turbulent 2016 election year! Bo, Obama, Donald, Hillary, Bernie… Even Ken Bone!
  • Want something a little more unique than what trends have to offer? Consider some of these unusual pet names! Ox, Novac, Babs, Palto, Reese, Igor, Dagney, Elsie, or Evo?

Don’t forget to get your new pet a nice shiny new name tag for their collar and include your phone number! This helps differentiate a stray from a lost pet and can be the difference between a quick return home or a trip to the local animal shelter if found!

photo credit: Carly & Art “What? Go out in the snow? Are you nuts?” via photopin (license)

Paws for Thought – Caring For Your Pet’s Feet

Pet paws, with their fuzzy and sometimes thick and leathery pads seem pretty tough to us. Our pets go tromping across terrain that we need a pair of hiking boots to even consider approaching! They might be tougher than our bare feet but they still need cared for properly. Do you know what threats, remedies, and precautions you need to take to protect your pet’s paws?

Caring For Your Pet’s Paws

  • Claws – Some people don’t realize how important keeping a pet’s claws trimmed is. It’s not just for your comfort or aesthetic reasons. In the wild, many animals claws will be worn down naturally by digging and making their way across rocks. In the domesticated world this natural “trimming” often doesn’t occur as often, or even at all. When trimming you have to be careful about trimming too short and cutting the “quick” in the nail. This can hurt your pet and cause bleeding. If you’re not comfortable regularly trimming your pet’s nails be sure to ask your vet at your next appointment!
  • Frostbite – Pets exposed to freezing temperatures for prolonged periods of time can experience frostbite, which is a damaging of the tissue, often leading to the tissues “death”. It can be very painful, and also very dangerous if left unrecognized and treated. Paws are a common place to see frostbite on pets since they are less insulated and in direct contact with ice, snow, or water. Check out the common symptoms and treatments here.  If you’re taking your pet out in very cold weather, keep it brief and keep their paws dry – or consider a pair of booties!
  • Burns – Summertime can make your pet at risk for burns on the bottom of their paws. Asphalt that has baked in the summer sun all day and even rocks or sand can cause damage. When taking your pet for a walk ensure they have grass, dirt, or some other alternative to hot surfaces to walk. You can also plan your walks for early morning or late evening.
  • Thorns & Cuts – Never ignore your pet if they seem to be favoring a paw either by limping, or paying extra attention to it with their tongue. Outdoor adventures, even within an urban environment can lead to cuts, splinters, or even thorns. Left unattended these can fester and become a much bigger problem for your pet.
  • In Rabbits – Rabbits, especially those who have cages with wire bottoms or hop around on smooth surfaces frequently are prone to a special paw ailment – sore hocks. Sore hocks occur on the back feet of rabbits and can be very dangerous if left untreated. They begin as bald spots on the bottom of the foot that wear away to open sores and infections. Keep a sharp eye on your bunnies hind feet to spot the symptoms!

Neosporin is a great treatment for many mild foot ailments. It is safe for use on most pets (including rabbits). Remember to regularly pay attention to your pet’s paws and see your vet regularly!

photo credit: Mic the otter spotter, going slow Pixie paws via photopin (license)

Charity for Pets – Helping You Give This Year!

Don’t forget about all the furry friends in need this holiday season! Making a charitable contribution in someone’s name can be a great gift for the animal lover who has everything. What pet charities have the greatest impact? Which ones best target the animals you feel are most in need? Let us help you find the perfect pet charity to donate to this holiday season!

Find the Best Pet Charity For Your!

  • Leave No Paws Behind – You know those pets at the shelter that are a little less desirable? Maybe their old, or have special needs? These are the pets most likely to live out the rest of their short and difficult lives in a small shelter pen. Leave No Paws Behind is an amazing charity who seeks these pets out and gets them hospice care, or finds them foster parents, not stopping until each one of these “less adoptable” animals has the comfort and dignity every pet deserves.
  • Fences For Fido – This charity helps “unchain” dogs and provide them with better outdoor care. Through this program, volunteers build dog-proof fences and provide an insulated dog house to animals kept on chains.  They also help educate family’s on outdoor pet care and affect policy change to ensure pets are treated more humanely.
  • Pets For The Elderly Foundation – Double your impact with this charity! Loneliness is a serious affliction for elderly people and many who would enjoy the companionship of a pet are daunted by adoption costs. This charity aids elderly people with covering the costs associated with adoption – finding a home for an animal while providing companionship for a senior citizen.
  • Red Rover – Red Rover offers Urgent Care Grants for pet owners who can’t cover the cost of their animals unexpected injury or ailments. They will also help you locate help in your area!

photo credit: wuestenigel Golden Retriever via photopin (license)

Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree! and Your Pet!

In homes all across the country, Christmas trees are going up! Whether your family opts for the natural cedar variety, or a more colorful, long living synthetic Christmas tree, to a cat a tree is a tree. Dangling ornaments, climbability, lights – how could a cat resist! So what can you do this year to deter Mr. Whiskers from challenging his acrobat abilities at your expense?

Keeping Your Cat Off The Christmas Tree

  • Citrus – Did you know cats hate the smell of citrus? Try keeping orange peels under your tree, or even hanging those festive oranges studded with cloves from the tree!
  • Placement – Try to position your tree away from furniture, shelves, or windowsills. Anything a curious kitty could use as a springboard to launch onto a tree.
  • Place Ornaments Higher – Don’t tempt your kitty with low hanging ornaments. Keep the dangly decor for the upper part of the tree, not accessible from the ground level.
  • Tabasco – Even if your cats not into climbing, they love to try and chew those lower branches! Spritz the lower half of the tree with Tabasco water. One nibble and they’ll learn it’s nothing they’re interested in! You can also try purchasing a product called Bitter Apple.

Other Pet Precautions To Take

  • Choose your decorations wisely – Tinsel, artificial snow, ribbons, and other such long stringy items can be hazardous to your pet. Avoid these all together. Also, avoid items with food like popcorn, cranberries, or chocolate!
  • Secure the Base – If a defiant pet does get on the tree, you don’t want it to fall over! Ensure that you follow the proper precautions for your specific tree style and size. It shouldn’t be wobbly!
  • Mind the cords – Make sure that Christmas tree light cords are run behind furniture, kept up, or run through PVC pipe to prevent your pet from chewing on these new wires.
  • Keep them away from the base – If you have a live tree, it will be important for it to have water. Make sure your pet does not have access to this water, it may be toxic to them!

photo credit: Daniel Dudek Elsa loves Christmas via photopin (license)

Literary Pets of Legend From Classic Books

It’s no question that pets play an important role in our lives. This fact is often reflected by their inclusion in our favorite stories and literary tales throughout the ages! Below are some of our favorite examples – an excellent list for children, or source of nostalgia for adults!

Literary Pets of Legend

Big Dan & Little Ann – You don’t have to be from the rural south to fall in love with these two loyal-to-the-end coon dogs made famous in Where the Red Fern Grows. These two dogs led us through an adventurous story capturing the freedom of youth.

Charlotte (Okay, well maybe it was Wilbur…) – Pigs might not be the most popular pets around but noone can say they could resist the friendship between Wilbur the pig and Charlotte the spider in Charlotte’s Web. 

Cat – Not a terribly creative name from one of the most creative literary icons of children’s books – Dr. Seuss. While the cat in Cat in the Hat may exhibit human characteristics, his knack for chaos will be instantly recognizable to any cat owner!

Peter – This posh little rabbit may where shoes and a jacket like a human but his love of Mr. McGregor’s garden delights is pure bunny.

Toto – A delightful little companion for Dorothy during her adventures. He may have a small role in The Wizard of Oz compared to the others but is iconic and this little terrier holds many hearts! Maybe we can all relate to the comfort found in a pet when we feel lonely or out of place as children?

Old Yeller – Possibly one of the earliest tragedies you remember as a child!  This pet that makes the ultimate sacrifice, giving his life to protect the family he loved. Old Yeller will always remain iconic with a special place in our hearts!

Black Beauty – This horses tale teaches us about struggle and kindness, as well as encouraging empathy for animals. A great story that reflects the reality of what it might be like to actually be an animal, instead of the many children’s books that focus on the animal behaving like a human.

Do you have a favorite? Share it with us!

photo credit: alicejamieson Dog Intelligence via photopin (license)

Don’t Overlook Your Pet This Holiday Season

With Thanksgiving a little over a week away, we are officially in the Holiday Season! If you’re like most people the holidays are a combination of enjoyment and stress. Unfortunately sometimes our furry friends are the ones who take the brunt of our stresses. As we travel to be with family, host parties or are away more frequently on family outings or shopping trips, our pets often get neglected and their needs can be overlooked.

  • If you’re the host – Make sure that your pets have a human-free environment set up just for them. Family gatherings and parties can be overstimulating to a social pet, and downright terrifying to the shy ones. Leaving a pet to mingle with the crowd sets them up for anxiety, being tripped over, or even getting into unhealthy foods or unsafe items. Set aside an area in a bedroom, laundry room, or master bathroom with your pets bed, food, water, and toys to give them their own quiet space away from all the hubbub.
  • If you’re travelling – Do your research before hand. Unless you’ve made plans with a trusty friend whom you can always call on to pet co-parent, plan. Since the holiday season is a popular time for travel, kennels and pet nanny’s may fill up quickly. It’s important for you to plan your pets care as far in advance as you can. Booking a pet sitter or kennel isn’t all their is too it either – you need be sure to pack things they need and leave notes about any special care. Don’t make your pets an afterthought!
  • If you’re away more often than usual – You don’t have to be travelling for your pet to get to missing you. If your social obligations are keeping you from home most of the day and evening, your pets are going to get lonely. Make time for your pet, and if you just can’t swing it, consider hiring a dog walker or pet nanny to temporarily fill your role.

We hope that you have a wonderful holiday season – and that your pets do too!

photo credit: dangaken Christmas Tree via photopin (license)

Diabetes and Your Pet – Know the Dangers!

Did you know that diabetes isn’t just a threat to humans? Thousands of pet are diagnosed every year. November is Diabetes Pet Awareness month so read on to find out about your pet’s risk factors and what to do!

Diabetes Risk Factors

Weight is likely the largest factor for both pets and humans. An overweight pet is far more likely to develop diabetes as they age than a fit pet is. A great incentive to measure your pets daily food and limit treats. Animals that eat a high carbohydrate diet are also at greater risk. Did you know that dogs don’t actually need carbohydrates? Yet most pet foods are primarily composed of corn or wheat. When buying pet food choose the option with the highest protein & fat content, and lowest carb content.

Two other genetic risk factors show that female dogs and male cats both have higher rates of diabetes than their opposites.

Symptoms of diabetes in pets

    • Weightloss
    • Vomiting and Dehydration
  • Excessive drinking & urination
  • Loss of Appetite

Pretty generic symptoms that are applicable to lots of different issues. If these are combined with any of the risk factors we already listed, be sure to ask your vet.

Living with a diabetic pet

Unfortunately once diabetes has been diagnosed, daily insulin injections become part of the routine. Your vet should be able to direct you on how to give the daily shot and store the insulin. It may be necessary for you to track your pet’s glucose levels throughout the day to help better understand when they rise and fall so you can adjust their insulin dosage accordingly. Sometimes you only need to do so until you’ve established a routine, while some pets may always need this service. Dietary changes will need to be made too. Since each animal is different your vet will need to direct you on these. Frequently you will need to feed your pet more often, but in smaller quantities.

Be sure to share your pets specialty needs with your pet nanny, pet sitter, or any other person who may care for them in your absence.

 

Struggling? See if you can find a diabetic pet support group nearby or online to help support you and your pet!

Spay or Neuter Your Pet – The In’s and Out’s!

Spaying or neutering your pet is a very important aspect of pet ownership. Doing so helps to keep your pet healthy and keeps the population down at animal shelters. Here are a few bits of spay or neuter information you need!

Age

While there is some variation on what the best age to spay or neuter a pet is, the average seems to be about four months. Some vets advocate two months as being old enough and encourage this since younger animals can heal faster, while others think one should wait until six months. Both cats and dogs can become capable of reproduction around five months. It’s important to be aware of this if you plan on waiting till the six-month mark.

Can I spay if my pet just had babies?

You should not spay or neuter you pet while they are nursing. They can become pregnant again during this time though. It is important for you to keep your pet away from unneutered males until their babies are weaned. This can be 5-6 weeks for kittens 4-5 for puppies.

Spay or Neuter Cost

Spaying and neutering isn’t’ free so it’s important that you factor this into pet costs before you commit to bringing one home. Prices will vary from place to place. Because this procedure is so important many areas offer low-cost clinics. Check out the ASPCA website here to find a low-cost clinic near you!

Other reasons for spaying and neutering

This procedure can help with several territorial issues pet owners may deal with. Territorial behaviours can be as unpleasant as spraying to mark turf, or as dangerous as aggression toward both you and other animals. Spaying or neutering can also help to keep your pet from wandering. The term “catting around” is based on the likeliness of male cats roaming far from home while looking for mates.

What is the recovery time?

Fourteen weeks seems to be about average. This may vary based on your pet’s age and other variables specific to them. It’s important to follow all your vet’s instructions post surgery!

 

 

Color Your Pets World – Learn What They See!

Color is just one of those things most humans take for granted. The world around us is a vibrant mix of primary colors with all their differing shades and hues. When we talk about how our pets see the world many people seem to assume they either a.) see it like us, or b.) are color blind. In fact, the truth is somewhere in the middle.

How Your Pet Sees Color

Cats Since cats are not just excellent predators, but also super stealthy, we tend to assume they have exceptional vision – and that good color is a part of that. In fact, cats see color very differently from us. Eyes are made up of what are called rod and cone cells. Humans have more cone cells that cats do allowing us to see a wider color spectrum. We can also see clearer at much greater distances. Cats can only see clearly for about twenty feet in front of them, while humans can see 100-200 feet. Cat’s see much duller versions of color than we do. They do not see reds or greens well and this leaves their worlds with what we would call a “washed out” look.

Your cat sees better at night!

How your cat sees color.

Dogs – Dogs aren’t color blind! …though they are blind to certain colors… Dogs only have yellow and blue cone cells. This means, to a dog, green, yellow, and red are all the same color. They can note levels of vibrancy though so a vibrant yellow will appear different than a dark red. See the examples below from Dogvision.com to better understand your dog’s color spectrum.

How humans see color

How your dog sees color

Rabbits If you’ve ever seen a rabbit you know their eyes are positioned differently than those of the cat or dog. This side placement allows them to see almost a full 360 degrees around them. Though they do have two blind spots – directly behind them and directly in front of them! Like the other two, rabbits see color mostly in two tones. They can see greens (good for veggies!), yellows, and blues. Like cats, they can see much better than us during dusk or dawn when the light is dim. Though their vision diminishes in full dark.

Keep this new information in mind when buying toys and accessories for your pet! Brighten up their world by catering to their primary colors!

Top 5 Threats To Your Pet This Halloween

The candy bowls are filling up and everyone’s picking out their costume for the big Halloween bash! In amongst all the activity that October brings are our pets. Living their life along side us and the many hazards we are constantly dragging out!  So, aside from the candy, what do you need to watch out for? Here’s our Top 5 list of things you might overlook…

Top 5 October Pet Threats

  1. Chrysanthemums (mums) – Those pretty pots of red, yellow, purple and orange mums are filling popping up everywhere! They may be the most popular seasonal flower, but they are also toxic to dogs and cats! The flowers, stems, and leaves all can make your pet ill. Vomiting, diarrhea, rashes, excess salivation – all these are symptoms of chrysanthemum poisoning. If you decide to decorate your home or yard with these autumn beauties, display them out of your pets regular zone. If you suspect your cat or dog has partaken, contact your vet!
  2. Jack-O-Lanterns – Nothing says fall like the friendly (or not so friendly!) jack-o-lantern glowing on the porch! Is pumpkin okay for your pet to eat? Yup! Is a pumpkin that has been sitting on your porch for nearly a month with a candle in it okay for your pet to eat? No. Accumulated bacteria and the possibility of wax  likely won’t kill your pet, but they could make them not feel so hot. Also, be sure to keep your jack-o-lantern in a safe place where your pet won’t knock it over while lit!
  3. Candy wrapper – Everyone should know that candy, especially chocolate, isn’t good for your pet. Have you thought about the wrappers though? You or your child may be great about keeping candy out of reach, but don’t forget to be fastidious about keeping those wrappers up too.  The tempting smell or remaining bits stuck inside can be just enough to entice a pet into eating them and could cause some serious gastrointestinal concerns.
  4. Pet costumes – Will they look adorable? Sure! It doesn’t mean it’s a good idea though. Don’t prioritize your satisfaction over your pets comfort and safety. If you plan on dressing your pet up make some trial runs. Put the costume on and see how they react and how well they can get around. Is it a tripping hazard? Will they get tangled up in it? Are they going to chew on it and possibly choke? Keep all these in mind!
  5. Strangers – Halloween is a time of high activity! Halloween parties and trick-or-treaters can keep the door revolving and add a lot of excitement and/or stress to your pets life. Especially when those people may come dressed up like monsters! A protective pet may overreact, even to people they are familiar with, if they show up in an unrecognizable costume. It’s best to confine pets somewhere out of the way with some food, water, a soft bed and their favorite toy.

Think your own threats not covered in our top 5? Share them with us!

photo credit: Randy Son Of Robert Wee Westie Watching for Tricksters via photopin (license)
photo credit: Verity Cridland Great Yorkshire Show 2015 via photopin

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