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  • 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 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
  • 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 Critters

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

    A look at our cold-blooded friends and discovering how to care for these fun loving creatures! Read More
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  • Fencing Solutions to Keep Dogs Contained

    If you have a dog, you know how difficult it can be to keep them on your property. Sometimes dogs just want to escape the confines of their yard, but it's our responsibility as guardians to ensure our pets are within our control at all times - even those times we're not physically with them. Fences make for good neighbors, and they make much safer environments for pets. Here are five ways you can fence your yard and the costs, the benefits and the dangers of each.

    The type of fencing you ultimately select should be based on your geographical region, your HOA guidelines (if you have them), and the type of dog(s) you are containing. You'll also need to consider your weather. If you're in an area with lots of weather, you'll want to consider installing a more durable type of fencing. If you live in an area with snow, the snow can pile up near the gates and provide a near perfect way for your pets to escape. But, if you have a dog that is regularly escaping from your yard, consider reading this article or implementing some of these practical tips below:

    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
  • Keeping Pets Safe from Coyotes

    No matter where you live, you’ve likely had to deal with wildlife. Whether its mountain lions and coyotes, or squirrels and deer, we live in a world with a rapidly increasing human population –  which means we are continually infringing on wildlife. The more we infringe on their territory, take their water supply and diminish their prey, the more they will be forced to enter our domestic havens. And whether you like it or not, coyotes are a very important part of nature’s balance.

    The one question we get most frequently is how to deal with wild animals that enter our yards threaten our dogs and cats. We are very strong believers in maintaining a symbiotic relationship with nature, so it’s important to us that we raise awareness on the issue. This week, we are discussing how you can keep your pets safe from coyotes and we’re including a whole section on how to do this in step-by-step format...

    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
  • Winter Caretaking of Feral Cats

    We have long been supporters of feral cats and advocate the use of Trap, Neuter & Release (TNR) as a form of managing feral cat colonies. Caretakers who support these animals are a special breed as they are able to care for an animal that is unable to care back – as far as we’re concerned, that’s the truest type of love.

    It makes us very happy when we can introduce new products designed specifically to keep feral cats safe and warm, while making the caretakers job a little bit easier. Today I want to show off a specialty feral cat house and a feral cat feeder that is available for purchase. While it is entirely possible to make a feral cat shelter and feeding platform, we know that many people would prefer to buy one ready-made and Feline Furniture is our “go to” group for these products.

    Read More
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5 Questions to Ask Before Getting Chickens

There is a lot of interest in chicken keeping these days. With the cost of food skyrocketing, chickens can be Read More

Keeping Pets Safe from Coyotes

No matter where you live, you’ve likely had to deal with wildlife. Whether its mountain lions and coyotes, or squirrels Read More

5 Ways to Help Birds in Winter on #NationalBirdDay

January 5 is officially National Bird Day and we're looking at ways that we can help our feathered friends during 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

Teaching Children to Approach Horses

I have a problem with parents who just allow their kids just run up to strange animals. In fact today, Read More

Tapeworms are no problem with #BayerExpertCare for Cats

We recently took in a stray cat that, quite honestly, had no business being out on the streets. This is Read More
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And now, we bring to you the Top 15 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Hairballs:

1. The average cat spends 1/3 of their waking life grooming themselves. Let’s do the math:

  • ~ Most cats sleep an average of 13-14 hours per day
  • ~ Most cats groom themselves for 3-4 hours per day

That only leaves 7 hours per day to play, demand food, stare at you in a condescending manner, and vomit hairballs on to your Persian rug.

2. The average person spends 1 hour per week staring at a regurgitated hairball and wondering what it is. (Okay, we made that stat up, but the rest of the stats in this article are true).

3. The average cat consumes 173 grams of cat hair each year. That’s about 6 ounces, which is the equivalent of 30 quarters or $7.50. It’s also the equivalent of 86 Ruby-throated hummingbirds.

4. The largest hairball ever removed from a cat was 5 inches wide (12.5 cm) and weighed in at a whopping 7.5 ounces. The surgery was performed by Cromwell Vet Group in Cambridgeshire, England on a cat named Gemma. (Side note: We discovered that the UK will write news stories about ANYTHING!) 5. The scientific term for hairballs is “trichobezoars.” The word Trichobezoars comes from the Persian word, Bezoar, and means “protection from poison.” 6. A Phytobezoar is a mass of undigested food particles usually from fruits and vegetables such as celery, citrus fruits, coconut, pumpkins, grape skins, prunes, raisins, and most notably persimmons (bezoars resulting from persimmons are called diospyrobezoars) 7. Hairballs were once used to prevent poisoning and act as an antidote if poisoning had already occurred. 8. All animals get hairballs – those particularly susceptible to this problem include cats, ferrets, rabbits, cattle, deer and (believe it or not), humans. 9. In 2003, an 18-year-old woman from Canada had a 5.1 lb hairball surgically removed from her lower intestine.
The World’s largest hairball is a collection from Henry Coffer of Charleston, MO. The hairball weighs in at 167 pounds and is a result of collecting hair clippings throughout his 50-year career as a barber. You can read that (and other interesting world records for cats) here. 10. Hairballs can cause a lack of appetite, dehydration, and depression in your cat. This is why it’s so important to offer them a food that is high-quality pet food and brush them daily (especially long-haired cats and during shedding seasons) to eliminate excess pet hair. Excessive grooming in a cat could indicate a health issue, just as a lack of grooming could indicate the same.

11. All animals groom, but not all animals get hairballs. If you're wondering where that hairball came from, check with the longer-coated, middle-aged, bored cat. You know - the one who prefer to lie on the couch and groom himself all afternoon. Kittens aren't nearly as self-conscious (and let's face it, they're just learning how to groom). Older cats generally have more mobility issues and can't reach those difficult spots (which is why you should implement a grooming routine!)

12. Eliminating hairballs (or reducing them) is as easy as a liquid supplement. The best ones are all-natural, and our personal favorite is the Licks Hairball - The Pill Free Solution.

13. Hairballs get big and can cause serious health concerns. One cat had a hairball so large it cut off her ability to eat. When the vets successfully removed the offending fur, it was "the size of two cricket balls". I don't know what size a cricket ball is, but it doesn't sound good.

14. The average cats swallows 173 grams of hair in 1 year, which is about the weight of 30 US quarters. I don't even like carrying change around in my purse because it gets so heavy. I think that trying to surgically remove 173 grams of hair would cost a lot more than trying to prevent it.

15. Most cat hairballs aren't even balls. Usually cats cough up something that is a long, cylindrical object. I've mistaken hairballs for everything from dead lizards to poop.

Bonus: Hairballs are perfectly natural. But to keep them moderated, be sure to give your cats regular supplements, groom regularly, and feed a healthy, natural diet.


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stacymantlestacymantle
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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