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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
  • All About HorsesAll About Horses

    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 PetsTraveling with Pets

    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 CrittersAll About Critters

    All About Critters

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

    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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  • February is National Prevent A Litter Month

    February is “National Prevent A Litter Month” and in the world of cats, there is perhaps no more important month. The reason that this holiday falls in February is because Spring is also known as “kitten season”.  

    Each year, there are more than 2.7 million perfectly healthy cats and dogs euthanized in shelters. But it doesn’t have to be that way. We all love kittens, but sadly, there are just far too many homeless cats in the world.

    We're helping Feline Fix by Five to help educate cat owners on the reasons why cats should be fixed by five months of age. This is an important issue and I hope you'll help spread the message so we can decrease the euthanization rate of cats and help keep our own cats healthy. 

    Here are five more important reasons you should have your cat fixed before they are five months old: 

    Read More
  • Rare Leptospirosis Outbreak in Arizona

    We’ve just learned that there is an outbreak of leptospirosis among dogs in the Fountain Hills, Arizona area. This highly contagious disease is transmitted through urine and contaminated water, which makes it especially dangerous for dog parks. 

    "The Department of Public Health has recorded 40-plus dogs tested positive since January 2016," Dr. Sarah Bashaw with El Dorado Animal Hospital in Fountain Hills reported to AZ Family. "A lot of the cases started in Scottsdale, but they have been reporting cases as far west as Avondale, some cases in Gilbert, and we've had the first cases I know of in Fountain Hills."

    Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection caused by the bacterium, Leptospira. This is also a zoonotic disease, meaning it can be transmitted to humans.

    Read More
  • Why the Removal of USDA information Matters

    removal-usda-informationremoval-usda-informationremoval-usda-informationI don't get political on this site very often, but there are a few things I can't forgive - every one of those things deals with those that hurt animals or kids.

    So when the current government administration removed the database of laboratories and breeders from the USDA website last week, you can bet I’m going to be upset... 

    Here’s why this matters: In AZ (and OH, VA, MD, NJ, CT, LA and NYC), it’s illegal to sell puppies in pet stores unless they’re from a reputable breeder. This has not only allowed animal rescues to find amazing homes for millions of dogs and cats, but it’s helped (slowly) start to make an impact on the number of puppy mills around the nation.

    Removing this critical information (all of which was gathered on the taxpayer’s dime), from a public website (also paid for by taxpayer dollars) means we can no longer look up anyone who sells puppies or kittens or horses or any other species, and see if they have any prior citations.  We can't look up laboratories that test on animals and their past citations. We can't track lion breeders or tiger breeders or those who breed thousands of animals in the space of a year under disgusting conditions. 

    Read More
  • The Definitive Guide to Stop Cats from Spraying

    There’s nothing that cat owners dread more than a cat who starts spraying. Whether it’s your own cat or a neighborhood cat that is spraying your doors and cars, spraying is one of the top reasons why cats wind up at shelters. 

    Some believe that female cats don't spray (this is untrue) and others believe that spaying/neutering cats will stop the problem (also untrue - but it will help decrease the frequency). Indoor cats who spray are usually doing it for an entirely different reason. 

    Cat urine has a very distinct odor that repels people and causes other cats to begin spraying, creating a vicious smelly cycle. 

    But, it doesn’t have to be that way. These days, there are many ways to keep this issue under control and your home smelling fresh and clean. Here is your definitive guide to stopping cats from spraying. 

    Read More
  • 4 Bath Salts That May Benefit Your Pets

    We're all looking for ways to improve our lives and those of our pets, and nothing says love like natural care! When it comes to curing dandruff, easing itchy paws, stopping skin irritations and helping pets overcome stress and be more comfortable in their skin, nothing gets the job done like natural salts. 

    Your body absorbs the many minerals from these baths through the skin (dermal absorption). There are tons of benefits for people and pets - from relaxation to detoxification. Salts have many other curative effects. 

    There are many types of salts out there - epsom, dendritic, Dead Sea, European and Himalayan. So, which bath salt should you choose for your dry-coat, itchy, dandruff-ridden pet?

    We take a look at all of them and how to best use them on your dogs and cats. 

    Read More
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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

September is National Animal Preparedness Month. Some natural disasters require that you evacuate your entire family, pets included. Wildfires, floods, Read More

Keeping Aquariums Alive During Summer Blackouts

Summer is on the way, and that means possible brown outs (power shortages) and even blackouts (power outages) for most 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 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

TrackR Uses Crowd GPS To Locate Your Pets

It's tough finding a GPS collar or tag that is small enough for your cat or tiny dog to wear, Read More
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If you have a cat, you've no doubt experienced hairballs. We curse them as we step out of bed with bare feet, warn our dogs not to eat them, search out holistic and homeopathic remedies to make the cats stop producing them... But hairballs remain a fact of life. For this reason, it seems completely normal to us that there would be a day commemorating them.

This year, National Hairball Awareness Day falls on the last Friday of April. So today we’re going to talk about a few things you may not be aware of. For example,

We’re going to tell you in this article because I’m sure you’ll agree that these are all critical pieces of information you need to know...

Hairball Museum Exhibits

Now in it’s sixth year, the National Museum of Health and Medicine offer a very specific exhibit: The Hairball Exhibit

The annual exhibit features both animal and human hairballs (also called trichobezoars). Trichobezoar is a word derived from the Persian word “Bezoar” which means, “Protection from poison.”  Bezoars (hairballs) were once thought to be a universal antidote against poisoning and were used in 11th century Europe for various ailments. China still uses ground-up cow bezoars as a medicine to prevent mouth disease. The exhibit contains 3 human hairballs and several pet hairballs. We think a visit to this museum would be well worth your time!

15 Things You May Not Know About Hairballs

Take a look at the Top Fifteen Things you Probably Didn’t Know about Hairballs.

For example, did you know that the average cat consumes 173 grams of cat hair each year? That’s the equivalent of 86 Ruby-throated hummingbirds. Or $7.50 in quarters!

10 Creative Uses for Hair (and hairballs)

As part of our tribute to hairballs, we’ve created a list of 10 Creative Things You Can Do with Hair & Hairballs. These range from making special insulated bird nests for your feathered friends to selling your most distinctive cat hair ball on Ebay or ETSY...

Ways to Prevent Hairballs

Cats ingest hair because their tongues are covered in tiny barbs (papillae) that act like brushes when they clean themselves. Many things can result in excess hairballs forming in your cat, including boredom, health problems and poor diets. You can help your cat by brushing long-haired cats daily and short-haired cats at least once per week. For this reason, we've brought you an Insider's Look at Cat Grooming. Nutrition is the single biggest external factor for animals and for hairball problems the right diet can pay dividends.  Feeding your cat food with a perfect balance of fatty acids promotes a healthy skin and coat which means your pet will shed less.

A Fun Way to Pass the Time

Want to learn more about hairballs (and have some fun at the same time)? Visit the Hairball Battle and get your hairball war rolling... It's even more entertaining than Candy Crush!

More articles about hairballs:

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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