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  • All About Cats

    Product Reviews, Behavior, health, humor, quotations, feline facts, news and stories. Read More
  • All About Dogs

    Product Reviews, Behavior, health, humor, quotations, facts, news and stories about dogs. Read More
  • Walking on the Wild Side

    Check out our animal profiles, rescues, articles, news and profiles - all about wild animals Read More
  • All About Horses

    Learn about equine science, whether you're an aspiring rider or a long-time owner, we have the latest in products, breeds, and more. Read More
  • All About Birds

    If the avian life is for you, we've got a look at the best products, interesting species, and how to select and care for birds. Read More
  • All About Critters

    Take a look at what it means to have ferrets, rabbits, mice, rats, guinea pigs, and more. Read More
  • 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
  • All About Reptiles

    A look at our cold-blooded friends and discovering how to care for these fun loving creatures! Read More
  • Traveling with Pets

    Be sure to check this section out before you hit the road with your pet! We've got a look at pet-friendly hotels, the guidelines of air, train, bus and auto travel, and much more. Read More
  • All About Fish and Ponds

    If you're a novice fish and pond enthusiast, join us as we discover the newest aquariums, beautiful backyards, and plenty of informative information about fish. Read More
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  • Dog-inspired Beers to Warm up the Fall

    The cooler temperatures have finally arrived, and with the chillier days come all of the local brewfests and Oktoberfest celebrations. They’ve been in full swing all month long, and I thought this would the perfect time to highlight some great beer companies whose dogs have inspired them to frothy greatness, or cater to those of us who just plain love dogs.

    Sea Dog Brewing, located on the salty coastline of Maine, got their logo from their Great Pyrenees, Barney, who served as apprentice brewmaster and the company’s figurehead until he went to the Rainbow Bridge. Great Pyrenees were originally bred to protect flocks, and Barney used those instincts to guard the brew kettle as it boiled. Visit one of their brewpubs in Maine, and raise a pint to the memory of Barney. (I suggest the Hazelnut Porter.)

    Read More
  • 10 Possible Reasons Your Cat Is Behaving Badly

    If your healthy cat is suddenly peeing on your bed or spraying in your office, if he's taken to running around at strange hours of the night, or mewing inconsolably all night, there are several possible explanations. Of course, you must always take them in for a vet check to eliminate any possible health conditions like blockages or disease. But health problems have been eliminated and your cat is still acting out inappropriately, here are some possible explanations.

    Room Deodorizers

    Everyone has probably used a room deodorizer in their home, particularly if they have cats. One of the most common places to put diffusers and other such items are near the litter-box. Avoid doing this! It can cause undue stress on  your cats and even make it difficult for them to use the litter box.

    Solve This: Instead of placing a deodorizer or diffuser near your cat's box, try one of the helpful Litter Box Deodorizers on the market. You can also tape live charcoal on the side or the bottom of the box or sprinkle the box with baking soda prior to putting cat litter inside.

    Read More
  • Guide to Hiking Etiquette with Dogs

    Cooler weather is on the way, and as the leaves change their colors to red and gold hues, it means many of us will be once again hitting the trails with our best four-legged friends.

    Let's face it - nothing cleanses the soul like a relaxing hike through the wilderness. Whether you want to enjoy the rich colors of wildflowers in that remote desert valley, or just want to run a few miles through the pines, it’s important to make sure everyone out there has the same level of enjoyment as you do. So dust off the walking stick and renew your wild spirit, but make sure you follow trail etiquette when you take your pets along.

    Dogs are usually naturals on the trailhead. That doesn’t mean you don’t have to watch them carefully - there are plenty of dangers in the wild - from poisonous mushrooms to cacti, and coyotes to rattlesnakes (not to mention hunters of the two-legged variety).

    This is why it’s so important to understand the basics of hiking etiquette. Here's a primer to get you started...

    Read More
  • Choosing a Ferret as a Pet

    Ferrets are intelligent, mischievous members of the"mustilidae" family, which means they are cousins with mink, weasels, skunks and even the European polecat. These little guys capture our hearts with their antics and are a great addition to any home (as long as you don't live in New York, California, Hawaii or Washington D.C. where ferrets are outlawed). Before you think about purchasing or adopting a ferret, be sure you check your local laws as well as the laws and regulations at local levels (including your home owners association).

    If you've done your homework and you think you're ready to add one of these charismatic creatures to your home, we have a host of articles to help you integrate them into your family and keep them healthy. Remember that a ferret's normal lifespan is 7-9 years, so you need to be sure you're ready to commit that time to this entertaining and affectionate pet.

    Read More
  • Catifying Your Home: Design for the pampered cat

     photo IMG_2167800x533_zps154f0ed6.jpg photo IMG_2167800x533_zps154f0ed6.jpg photo IMG_2167800x533_zps154f0ed6.jpg As you all know, we're big fans of feline design (also known as "catification"). This is a story that includes a combining of households and some creative design from Mountain Cat Trees!

    When Eliza and Tiffany bought a home together in early 2014, they had to merge households. Eliza brought in her four cats (Agnes, Monkey, Judd and Naked) and a dog called Nora. Tiffany brought along her cats, Encore and Pluto, as well as her two dogs, Nova and Bebe.

    That's a big menagerie in anyone's book! Needless to say, the couple was concerned about how this “Brady Bunch” of animals would get along. They enlisted Mountain Cat Trees, makers of highest-quality, natural wood cat trees, scratching posts and cat shelves to help “catify” the new house to make it easier for animals and people to make the transition (read Mountain Cat Trees Inspire Felines to learn about their beautiful products!)

    Today, we're going to show you an entire gallery of their beautiful home and show you how simple it is to create your own home designs.

    Read More
  • Dog Etiquette: Leashes

    Recently, we posted on Facebook that we were out walking our dogs and experienced two small, off-leash dogs aggressively running to our much larger, leashed dogs. My dogs were both on-leash and controlled, but I was still annoyed. After posting my experience, I received a lot of responses - some of which were a bit negative due to the fact that one of my dogs looks like a pit bull (apparently I shouldn't be walking him?). Here’s the thing: It doesn’t matter if my dogs are pit bulls or chihuahuas or golden retrievers. In fact, I could have been walking alone, or riding a horse, or walking my cat. The fact is, dogs of any size should never run up on another person or animal without being invited to do so. It’s a common courtesy that could save your dog’s life.

    Here are just a few reasons why...

    Read More
  • The FeedSafe Feeding Station for Feeding Individual Diets

    In multi-pet homes, keeping pets out of the others food is of critical importance. If you have a chow-hound who loves to invade your cat's food bowls (or any other situation that requires feeding individual diets in multi-pet homes), we have a solution for you.

    The name of this innovative product is the Feed-Safe Feeding Station.

    Feed Safe is a durable enclosure that easily stops larger pets from raiding your smaller pet's food bowl. Not only does this stop other your dog from raiding your cat's food, it can give critters like ferrets a safe place to eat while they're roaming around in their free time. It can also be easily adjusted to help separate kitten or puppy food from the mama-cat or mama-dog.

    This is also a very useful solution for animals who tend to be slow eaters, or those who are on a prescription diet.

    Another unexpected benefit was being able to keep the cats off the counters! We admit - we have some bad habits and the cats will usually eat their canned food on the counter. This is not the cleanest way to handle the situation, but placing the food on the floor became impossible with our quick acting dogs. This is a great way to let your cats eat their canned foods at their own pace without being on the counter top and without being harassed by larger pets.

    Read More
  • Keeping You and Your Pets Safe Without Power in Winter

    The weather is moody as a wild cat and these days, no one really knows what to expect. When a cold front moves in, it can easily cause road delays making you late for dinner or freeze power lines and take out heaters.

    That means dangerous conditions for our pets, as well ourselves.

    You already know the basics: Keep your pets indoors, make sure any outdoor animals (horses, cattle, even feral cats) have access to extra calories and warm blankets, as well as covered shelter. I"m sure you also remember that you cold-weather and aquatic pets are going to require extra care until power is restored.

    But, once you get past the basics, there are a few other things to consider, particularly when it comes to birds, aquariums, reptiles and stray animals or livestock. You'll also want to look at some alternative ways to keep you and your pets entertained - and we've got plenty of suggestions for you.

    Read More
  • 4 Favorite Pet-friendly USA Hikes

    Nothing cleanses the soul more than a day of hiking in an ancient forest with only yourself and your best four-legged friend as company. I don't know about you, but as I've matured, I've gained a stronger appreciation for the simple things in life. While we probably hiked when we were younger, we may not have noticed the rich hues of wildflowers or the tenacity of a wild mushroom growing under the cover of a 200-year-old pine tree... 

    But before you head into the wilds with your dog, it's important to choose your trail carefully, carry a GPS tracker, know your pets (and your own) limitations, and let others know exactly where you’re going and when you plan to return.

    Hiking with dogs requires only slightly more planning. Rules and regulations vary according to trail-head and park areas, so be sure to contact your local forest service before taking your pets along. Start slowly and work into more intense trail heads or you may find yourself carrying an exhausted dog out in your backpack.

    There’s a hike for whatever part of the country you’re in and whatever skill level you’re working around, but these are a few of our favorite day hikes around the country.

    Read More
  • Horse Theft: It Could Happen to You

    He received the phone call at 6:30 am on a Saturday morning from the boarding stables. The woman’s voice was sad, even apologetic, as she explained the horrible accident. His horse had colicked and died two days earlier. The woman he spoke to owned the boarding stable, and had been a close friend of the man for a number of years. He had just purchased the horse a few months previously, and it seemed a logical choice to board with the woman. But now he questioned his judgment as she expressed her sadness for his loss. She stated that she had paid a friend of hers to remove the corpse from her property and bury the animal in the desert. Could she please forward him a check for $250.00 to cover the cost of the burial?

    Immediately, he was suspicious. He had just visited the horse the previous weekend, and the mare had seemed perfectly fine. He knew that colic was a chancy illness and could strike without warning. Still, the situation seemed unlikely. He spent the next several weeks investigating the matter. When he asked where the horse had been buried, the woman claimed that she was not sure, as the backhoe driver had taken care of the actual burial.

    When he asked if she had contacted a veterinarian to have a necropsy performed, she said No, it didn’t seem necessary. His questions were unanswered, and his suspicions grew as the woman became obviously irritated with him. Soon, she threatened to contact the police if he trespassed her property during his amateur investigation. He complied, and instead spoke with friends of hers.

    Read More
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RemoteLync Protects Pets Against Fire and CO2

In early July, authorities reported that 14 dogs had died in a fire at a central California boarding facility. In Read More

4 Favorite Pet-friendly USA Hikes

Nothing cleanses the soul more than a day of hiking in an ancient forest with only yourself and your best Read More

Getting Old Sucks - Cognitive Dysfuntion in Dogs (CCD)

As most of you know, we have a dog who has just turned 15 years old. He’s half blind, almost Read More

New Pill Paste for Horses Make Pilling Horses Easy

horse at fencehorse at fenceGiving a horse a pill can be a challenge. There isn’t a horse alive who can’t Read More

Hurricane Katrina – My Journey Back in Time

My journey back to the Gulf Coast for Hurricane Katrina’s 10th Anniversary Remembrance was everything I had expected it to Read More

Healthy Cats Made Easy with #InstinctRaw

As you know, we are big fans of raw food (or at least a form of raw food) for our Read More
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iCat Competition CatiCat Competition Cat

Cat agility, in its official competition form, has been around for nearly a decade. In October of 2003, Vickie Shields, along with a small group of friends, held the very first official cat agility competition, and the International Cat Agility Tournaments (ICAT) began. As with so many things that involve pets, cat agility grew quickly in popularity, and in February, 2005, the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) held their first competition during the Oregon Cats show.

Agility training, even if you have no intention of competing, is a great way to make sure your cat gets the exercise they need and the entertainment they crave. You may be sitting there wondering how you can train your cats to dart through tunnels and weave around a set of poles when you can’t even get them to use the scratching post instead of the corner of your couch. Yes, cats do seem less interested in pleasing others than your average dog, but just like dog training, you only need to know what toys and/or treats are most appealing to your cat to get started.

Before you begin any sort of training or exercise regimen with your cat, please consult a phys—I mean, veterinarian. Teaching them to jump through hoops may seem harmless, but a check up at the vet’s office is always advised to make sure there aren’t any underlying issues that might be aggravated by the training process. Your vet can also be a great source of valuable information, such as how much is “too much” training in a day, and if your cat should be given extra food when in training, even if it’s not for competition purposes.

Just as in dog training, there are different methods in use when it comes to cat agility training. The simplest appears to be using toys to “lure” the cat through an obstacle course. After repeated runs, they get used to the pattern of the course and complete it faster and faster. This method is quite popular, and would work well for “amateur” kitties who don’t have any plans on going pro.

Others use more traditional training methods most commonly seen in dog training: Spoken commands and clicker training. If this surprises you, we understand why. Cats are known to be intelligent creatures, but they also have a reputation for doing what they want, when they want. But, if you make it fun and there’s food involved – most cats will be game for at least a small training session now and then!

Not every cat will be capable of, or agreeable to, agility training. You can certainly attempt to train any cat that has their vet’s clearance to proceed, but it’s best to start when your cat is young. If your cat is no longer a frisky kitten, but they like to play, then you’re already a giant step ahead! Start slow and keep it fun for both of you. As you know, attempting to force a cat to do anything they’re not interested in doing is futile.

If you’re interested in training your cat, visit the ICAT and CFA websites. There’s plenty of information there to get you started.

Note from the editor’s cat: While cat agility competitions are reported to have been started by humans, don’t be fooled. It was a cat who, like myself, became quite sick and tired of letting canines keep the spotlight all to themselves, that spurred the very first contest. Known for our natural agility and grace, we, the feline kind, set out to show Fido and his friends that cats can run an obstacle course without even putting a whisker out of place—and without all the uncouth drooling and tail wagging.

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