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  • Behavior Problems? We have answers.Behavior Problems? We have answers.

    Behavior Problems? We have answers.

    Learn about behavior from our team of experts. Whether you have cats, dogs, reptiles, horses or birds, we can help you learn to live with them. Read More
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  • Handling a Dog Attack on Walk

    Years ago, I was walking my dogs, Malachi and Aquilla, down my neighborhood street when out of the blue, we were attacked by a large dog. It was a terrifying moment and one that could happen anywhere at any time. It also made me very aware of the problems with off-leash dogs and runaway dogs, and is one of many reasons why I started this website so many years ago.

    With two large wolf hybrids at my side, there wasn’t much I feared in my early twenties. We walked down the street together, as we had done thousands of times before, when the hair on the back of my neck stood up. I suddenly felt that we were being stalked, and as I was very unaccustomed to being stalked, I really didn’t know what to do.

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    • Variety of Colors
    • LED-light is bright
    • USB Rechargeable lithium ion battery
    • 3 Modes: Fast Flash, Slow Flash, Constant On
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    • MSRP $29.99

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    National Feral Cat Day is observed on October 16 every year and we’re proud to take part in this annual tradition.

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    The washing step is important during disinfection.  If you think about using a public restroom, the antibacterial sanitizer comes AFTER the soap step. This is the same way you are always supposed to clean anything. The cleaning step is extremely important because as I learned the other day that dirt can inactivate bleach!

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Dogs that can't Swim and Some that just aren't very good at it

Summer is officially here in the desert and we have reached temperatures in excess of 100 degrees, so you know Read More

Disaster preparedness with pets

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Keeping Aquariums Alive During Summer Blackouts

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Keeping Pets Safe from Coyotes

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5 Questions to Ask Before Getting Chickens

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TrackR Uses Crowd GPS To Locate Your Pets

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If you have ever bought a fancy cat toy only to find your pet later playing with the packaging instead of the toy, you’re not alone. Baffled cat owners often wonder what went wrong. Some even take it personally. Your independent-minded kitty’s choice of diversion, though, is more a result of its genetics than its feelings towards you. Because your cat is a predatory animal by nature, a simple object that engages all of its instincts will attract its attention the most. Homemade toys often satisfy kitty the most. To better understand their benefits, we consulted with expert Holly Tse, author of Make Your Own Cat Toys: Saving The Planet One Cat Toy At A Time and owner of the Makeyourowncattoys Web site. Along with her insights, she offered useful ideas to help you create your cat’s next favorite toy -- inexpensively and painlessly.

Consider the Benefits

Homemade toys not only benefit your cat, but they may also enhance your own lifestyle. Tse shares her top two reasons that homemade often trumps store-bought when it comes to cat toys: You reduce your environmental impact “Some of the best homemade toys can be made by reusing or recycling items you already have around the house,” says Tse. By putting your “garbage” to good use, you divert usable objects away from landfills and direct them instead toward your eager kitty -- a plus in our eco-conscious times. It’s fun and safe for you and your cat Making homemade cat toys is fun and creative, and it gives you the opportunity to bond more closely with your cat, says Tse. When it comes to safety, there won’t be any scares about lead paint in toys. “If you buy a toy made overseas, you don’t know what materials went into the manufacturing process,” explains Tse. “However, if you make a toy out of an old gym sock, then it’s really up to you to determine how toxic it is,” a smiling Tse adds.

Try It Yourself…

Ready to try your hand at creating your household’s next most popular cat toy? Here are four creative ideas from Tse’s book:

1. Lazy Wrestle Sausage

(prep time: two minutes)

What you’ll need: one sock, one plastic grocery bag, one tablespoon organic catnip, one sturdy shoelace
How you’ll do it: Place the catnip in the sock. Stuff the sock with the grocery bag. It should feel soft and pliable to the touch. If it feels too stiff, cut away excess plastic from the bag. Next, tie the shoelace around the open end of the sock, about 2 inches from the end. The toy is now ready for a game of tug-of-war.

2. D

(prep time: less than one minute)

What you’ll need: one CD, bright sunshine
How you’ll do it: Hold the CD in the natural light so that it casts reflections throughout the room. Try angling the reflection so that your cat can chase the light beam along the floor and walls.

1. Polar Ribbon

(prep time: five minutes)

What you’ll need: old polar fleece jacket or top, one chopstick, one thick rubber band (like the ones used for broccoli), scissors
How you’ll do it: Cut a 1-inch-wide lengthwise strip from the polar fleece top. Continue cutting strips until they add up to 50-70 inches in length. Tie the strips together with double knots to form a very long ribbon. Tie a knot at one end of the ribbon, and tie the other end of the ribbon around the elastic band. Wrap the band around the wide end of the chopstick until it is secure. Now, swirl the ribbon above your cat’s head or dangle it above kitty’s belly. Watch her chase it and swat it.

4. Sweep Around

(prep time: two minutes)

What you’ll need: one toilet paper roll, scissors
How you’ll do it: Cut one end of the toilet paper roll to make parallel lengthwise strips, about 2.5 inches long and 0.3 inches wide each. Cut all the way around the roll to form the bristle end of the broom. Press the toilet paper roll flat, then fold it in half lengthwise. Fold again. Fluff up the sweeper bristles so that it fans out like a broom. Sweep Around is now ready to sweep kitty off her feet. Tse reminds that you should always try to supervise your cat when it is playing with toys, homemade or otherwise. Store the toys in an attractive, covered basket, or other container, until ready for use. As a final word of advice, Tse says, “Avoid items that your cat may want to eat or that have the potential to cause injury.” In fact, she concludes, “when in doubt, just leave it out.”

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Author: stacymantle
About the Author

Stacy Mantle is a freelance writer who currently resides in the southwestern deserts of Arizona with a few dogs, several cats, and a very understanding husband. She is a regular contributor to Pet Age Magazine, Catster, Animal Behavior College, and of course, PetsWeekly. Many of her stories and articles have been translated into several languages, and now reach an international audience. She is also the author of a bestselling urban fantasy/thriller, Shepherd's Moon; a humor book entitled, Conquering the Food Chain: Living Amongst Animals (Without Becoming One), and a line of Educational Activity Books for children.

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