Category Archives: General

How to Introduce a Cat to a Dog’s Home

Sandy, a SFC (single female with cat) was delighted when Justin, a SMD (single male with dog) suggested that she move into his rented house in the summer of 2009 while attending university in Toronto.

Moving has been Identified as #1 Stress Factor for a Human – It’s Probably the Same for Pets

Sandy’s cat, “Boo,” had never lived with a dog. Justin’s dog, a Labrador retriever named “Carl,” had never lived with a cat. Integrating two different styles of furniture into one household was no problem. Integrating two four-legged roomies required careful logistics, time, and patience.

Many animals, no matter what type, cling fiercely to home and hearth. They become accustomed to the smells, sights and routines of their own household. Moving is said to be the number one stress factor for a human being. And it’s probably true for pets, too.

The biggest, most fearless cat or dog can be hopelessly confused and worried about a household move. If the human is moving, lock, stock, and pet, into a new home where that pet will remain the only pet, that’s one thing. But if the human is moving everything into someone else’s home – and that home includes someone else’s pet – the fur may fly.

Pets Can’t Connect by Telephone or E-Mail

Sandy and Justin had known each other as friends for a few months. They’d had coffee together, studied together, and shared many friends together. But Boo-the-cat and Carl-the-dog had never met.

This scenario entailed a two-part transition for Boo. One: she’d be moving out of the only home she’d ever known. Two: the new home included a dog. Carl was on slightly easier ground since he wasn’t moving. He did, however, need to re-think his single dog status and learn how to share his home with a cat.

Pre-planning can be make all the difference when introducing a pet to another pet’s home. Ideally, the two should be made aware of each other’s existence prior to a face-to-face encounter. Unfortunately, a telephone call or e-mail won’t work. A scent-exchange will work.

Who Owns that Scent?

A scent-exchange entails placing some of the cat’s items in the dog’s house and some of the dog’s items in the cat’s house. Anything that holds that animal’s scent will do the trick, such as beds, toys, and blankets. Rotate the items and change their positions around the house so each pet gets the chance to smell the other on different things and in various locations. The scent-exchange should occur at least one week prior to their first physical meeting.

Face-to-Face

Introduce the two on neutral ground. Choose the front yard of one of the houses or even a nearby park. The dog should be on leash and at least one-foot away from the cat’s carrier. Since height holds a lot of weight in the animal world, keep the cat carrier at the dog’s eye level. Allow them to see and smell the source of those mysterious scents they’ve been inhaling. Provide treats to each for good behaviour at this crucial introductory stage.

Free the Cat with Supervision

Arrange visits to each other’s homes but don’t let the two loose in the living room. Again, keep kitty in the carrier and dog on leash. When both animals appear to feel secure, allow the cat to leave the carrier but continue holding the dog on leash and in a sit position. If he lunges at the cat, say “No!” and return him to the sit position. Continue offering treats and pats to show that good things happen when he doesn’t chase kitty

Since the cat will be moving into the dog’s house, bring the cat to visit as often as possible to allow both pets to acclimatize.

When introductions happen in stages, move-in day should be less troublesome. The alternative – tossing two pets together along with couches and televisions – can be very disconcerting for everyone involved. With careful planning, even the most reluctant four-legged roomies can set aside their differences and live in harmony.

The Cat May Appear to Hold the Victim Card

Many people think a cat will assume the role of victim and, while cats may want us to think that way, they have a talent for working their way to top position in a household previously dominated by a dog. Whether it’s their ability to psyche out a dog, or the reality of their sharp claws and teeth, a cat who stares down a dog often has the upper paw in the relationship.

Dogs, while they may acknowledge the cat’s leadership qualities, may continue challenging the situation, especially in the beginning. Continue to supervise carefully to ensure no danger will befall either pet. A cat chased to the top of a tree isn’t a good scenario, but neither is a cat claw embedded in a dog’s nose.

Watch for cues that state each pet’s position. If the cat is truly the underdog, take extra time to train the dog not to chase or harass.

It is pointless to chase a dog who is already in full flight. Train the dog not to look at the cat and reward him when he ignores her.

Lavish Attention on Both Pets to Avoid Jealousy

To avoid jealousy, set aside extra time to bond and play with each pet, individually and together. Offer treats for good behavior, and provide chin scratches and belly rubs to smooth ruffled feathers and assure each that they’re equally valued and loved. To get more infos www.pestcontrolsecrets.com

Entertaining Pet Birds That Reward Time Invested in Them

There are over twenty species and sub-species of macaws. As well as having their individual characters, there are significant differences between the species. As they are long-lived and can outlive their keeper, prospective keepers should do some research before making their choice.

Some macaws, notably the hyacinth macaw, have become increasingly rare in the wild. Others, such as the scarlet macaw, have been declared endangered, so that a prospective owner would be well-advised to check the local legality of keeping some types before purchasing. Macaws are not ideal for inexperienced birdkeepers. This goes some way to explaining the increasingly popularity of the so-called “mini macaws” or dwarf species of macaw. Popular mini macaws include Hahns macaw, the red-bellied macaw and the severe macaw.

Macaw Characteristics

Macaws are intelligent and can be taught tricks and skills. They can be aggressive during the breeding season. If left unsupervised, macaws will amuse themselves. They can be mischievous and possibly destructive in some cases. Time needs to be invested in the care and keeping of macaws. They are best trained from young and need training early to address any aggressive behavior. When trained many species become very loyal and friendly.

The macaw’s beak is especially important as it is often used as another limb, especially when climbing. Red patches in some species, often on the shoulders of the macaw or the tips of its wings, are often part of courtship or aggression displays, so that kind of behavior should not be unanticipated in those species.

Types of Macaw

The hyacinth macaw is the largest parrot in the world at a length of up to forty inches. It is good natured but very strong. As it is now endangered in the wild and popular in captivity, the hyacinth macaw has become more expensive to purchase. Its exotic coloration of a rich purple body and head with yellow around its eyes and lower beak, adds to its attraction. Its beak is very strong, having been said to be able to exert a 300lb pressure. As a result, a macaw cage or macaw aviary for this species has to be strong; the hyacinth macaw is ideally suited to trees and can be fed on nuts, seeds or fruit plus the occasional meat or bone. The hyacinth macaw can and will screech. click here for more infos

The blue and gold macaw or blue and yellow macaw has a striking appearance and is also a large type of macaw at around 36 inches long. Though affectionate and intelligent they can be moody both in adolescence and maturity. They will play with pine cones and like the hyacinth, enjoy trees. As well as conventional parrot food, they can be fed on leaves, seeds, fruit, nuts, greens, and mealworms. A mutation created in recent years is the blue and white macaw, often called the blue macaw.

The greenwing macaw, sometimes also termed the marron macaw, is one of the macaws that seems to be more interested in talking. Again it needs a large cage or aviary. Friendly and intelligent, it is most comfortable when kept warm. It is generally good with children and other pets but can be easily startled and is sometimes noisy. As with many other larger macaws, branches can be given to it so that it is able to exercise its beak. This macaw usually measures between 33 and 36 inches in length, the female being slightly smaller. It can be fed on parrot food, fruit, greens and brazil nuts. With its dark red head and green wings, this macaw’s

apparently bare cheeks seem at first sight to show white skin with red lines, but the pale areas are actually tiny feathers. The face will redden due to blood flow as the macaw becomes more excited.

The scarlet macaw, also known as the red and gold macaw is another macaw that likes to stand on the perch and chew at fresh branches. Though naturally sociable and affectionate and a bird that loves to bathe, it can screech when bored and if regularly left alone for too prolonged a period, can be prone to becoming moody and more likely to nip when approached. It is best housed in an aviary and enjoys a wide variety of food including seed, cuttlefish bone, oranges, bananas, berries, carrots, nuts, tomatoes and in most cases are especially partial to fresh twigs.

Macaw Cages

Macaws need very strong cages. Ideally they should be housed in an aviary or at least a very large cage as they need to be able to fly and exercise. They often become adept at opening cage latches with their beaks or alternatively the stronger types may simply use their beaks to destroy a weak latch.

How to Start Crate Training for a New Puppy

A pet owner is bound to find dozens of reasons a crate is handy throughout the life of his dog. And with these fun tips, he doesn’t need to fear the process of training a new puppy to love his new home.

Benefits of Crate Training

Many pet owners use crates as their puppies’ personal get away and snuggly spot to sleep at night. Crates also offer safety when owners can’t be around since puppies are notorious for chewing or swallowing whatever they come across.

Crates provide a cozy den for dogs, but also offer the human members of the household several handy benefits. First and foremost, crates are a wonderful tool in house training a new puppy. Second, crates let owners leave the home without wondering what items will be gnawed to bits on their return. Crates are also almost essential if owners plan to do any traveling with their new pet.

Where to Put the Puppy’s Crate

When properly introduced to a crate, it is likely to be a place the dog loves to go. Pet owners can start by finding a place for the crate in a room where the family likes to hang out. Even inside his crate, a dog wants to feel like part of the gang.

Pet owners may even want two crates if their home is two stories. Having a second crate also offers an out-of-the-way place for a puppy to rest while company is over.

Since the crate is probably where the dog will be sleeping at night, this should also be taken into consideration when choosing a spot. Most crates are easy to move around though, so the first few weeks are a good period for experimentation.

Getting a Puppy Used to His New Crate

Pet owners will want to take it slowly when introducing a puppy to his new crate. Treats make the process fun and leave puppy with a positive association.

Here is a step-by-step plan.

1. Place a few treats just inside the crate’s open door.

2. Move away to let the puppy investigate.

3. Allow the puppy to retrieve the treats and back away.

4. Place more treats a little farther into the crate.

5. Continue the process until the puppy has to step fully inside the crate to retrieve his treats.

6. Do not close the door behind him.

7. Praise the puppy every time he enters the crate.

8. When the puppy enters the crate without hesitating, close the door.

9. Let the puppy get used to being in the crate for short durations at first.

Pet owners can make their puppies’ crate time fun by using favorite treats and toys. Stuffable Kongs or treat balls provide mental stimulation and physical exercise for puppies while owners aren’t able to supervise. Switching out the toys in a puppy’s crate is another way of keeping him entertained.

Crate Training Problems

Even with the treats and fun, some dogs may whine or bark when placed in their crate. It’s important not to feed bad habits by offering attention for undesirable behavior. A pet owner should wait till the puppy quiets down before letting him out.

Most dogs have no problem with a crate. After all, they are den animals by nature. If dogs don’t take to it, owners can create the next best thing buy setting up a dog-safe area or play pen in a room with an easily cleanable floor.

Crates can be used effectively for time outs every so often. But owners will want to remember to make sure their dogs have primarily positive associations with their crates. If pet owners force their puppies into crates or leave them in for hours on end, problems are sure to develop.

Choosing the Right Crate

It’s important to find the right size crate. Dogs have a natural instinct to keep their crate clean, but if the crate is too big, the dog will have room for a bathroom area alongside his area for sleeping.

If the crate is too small, the dog will be uncomfortable. Weight guides are posted on new crates in the store. If a pet owner is purchasing a crate used, he’ll need to be certain the crate is big enough for his dog to stand up, turn around, and lie down.

Purchasing a crate for a puppy that’s bound to get a lot larger can be tricky. Some crates come with built-in dividers for this very reason. Otherwise, a pet owner can purchase a crate to meet the estimated requirements for the puppy’s adult needs and block of part off the space with a Rubbermaid tub.

First Steps to Care for New Puppies

New puppies require a lot of time and care as do babies and toddlers. Having older children assist with feeding, cleaning up after the pet and exercise are a few tasks that can strengthen the bond between the pet and child and teach them responsibility. Of course adults should establish duties based on necessary requirements and supervise children.

After one has taken the time to research what puppy breeds are best for your family and lifestyle, it is important to know what to do first to take care of the pet. Research shows that the top three dog breeds for children are Golden Retrievers, Border Collies and Labrador Retrievers. Knowing breed characteristics and requirements can help you plan for what your kids can do with the puppy and future adult dog. If you know the breed, research an AKC or Rescue group website or book for more information.

First Steps to Take Care of a New Puppy

1. Buy necessary supplies. Your dog will need a new collar and leash, pet bed, crate, puppy food and a few toys to get started. Pet supply store personnel and veterinary staff can help you choose the best choices of these items for your pet.

2. Take the puppy to see the veterinarian. Young animals often have weaker immune systems and need to receive vaccinations to boost immunity to various diseases that could be contracted in puppy hood as well as while they are adults. The first vaccines, given on the correct schedule, will ensure the puppy stays at optimum health. The veterinarian will also want to a blood and / or fecal exam to check for parasites. Many puppies have intestinal worms that can cause life-threatening problems if not treated. The veterinarian will also do a physical exam of the puppy’s head and body.

3. Puppy -proof your home. Like toddlers, puppies also are at a low level and are curious. There are number of things to to to keep puppies (and small children) away from toxic, sharp, heavy or other dangerous things around the house. For more information, go the American Animal Hospital Associations’ website for pet owners, Healthy Pet.

4. Grooming and handling a puppy. Puppies need to be carefully petted and handled often to help them socialize to children and the family. Hair Brushing, nail clipping, ear cleaning, baths and even tooth brushing can be easy to do for an older puppy or dog who was taught these things at an early age.

5. Know what and how much to feed a puppy. Discuss with your veterinarian what is best for your dog. Amounts and types of foods can vary depending on the dog breed and age.

6. Exercise. It is a good idea to leash train puppies while walking them outside. Obedience trainers can also assist with this training.

7. Learn how to start housebreaking the puppy. The puppy will quickly need to learn what is appropriate elimination behavior inside and outside the house. Crates and puppy pad can help with this as the puppy stays confined in the crate for a few hours and then let outside frequently to learn a schedule. Baby gates are also helpful to confine animals to only certain areas of the house that you don’t mind them soiling during training.

What Children Can do To Help With Pets

· Feeding and Watering. Kids can be taught how much food is needed each day by using a measuring cup. If using a bowl, have kids watch for empty water bowls and help refill them as necessary.

· Pet Bedding. Kids will enjoy helping set up a pet bed and can alert an adult when it needs to be cleaned.

· Bathing and Grooming. Older kids love giving puppies their bath once they know some basic guidelines like not getting water in ears and soap in eyes and making sure to remove all soap. They also are helpful in remembering to do daily brushing.

· Behavior Training the Puppy. Kids may even want to take part in obedience classes to teach the dog to walk on a leash and other tasks.

· Exercise. Older children may be assigned the task of walking the dog at least two times per day to assist with exercising the pet and leash training. Otherwise, adults and small children can walk the puppy together.

Giving children a small reward of treats, allowance or a fun event can also help inspire kids to want to return again and again to care for their pet, but the true reward is the affection and attention the puppy gives the child who is its’ best friend for life. for the next post, click here