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Learning to Live with Bobcats

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guide to understanding bobcats After posting our articles on Keeping Pets Safe from Coyotes, we began to get questions about living with other species of urban wildlife, so we're taking some time to discuss ways we can all live peacefully together. 

As we discussed before, most predators are opportunistic and omnivorous - this means that like humans, coyotes and bobcats and other predators can survive on just about anything as long itis easy to access with a minimum amount of danger to the animal. This includes birds, reptiles, and yes - your small dog or cat. 

We bring you the ultimate guide to humanely keep a bobcat from your yard. 

Read more: Learning to Live with Bobcats

The Effects of A Border Wall on Wildlife

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We really do try avoid the chaos of politics on this pet-centric website (although my personal page is another story). 

But eventually, to not make a comment, to not bring you up-to-date on an issue that severely impacts endangered species, wildlife, pets or any animals, is just reckless and irresponsible. The planned "border wall" is such an issue.

Let me start with some good news...

We're very excited that a jaguar was photographed in the Dos Cabezas mountains (about 60 miles north of the US-Mexico border) this week. This is the third Arizona jaguar that has been seen in the state of Arizona since 2011 and this sighting is known as the Dos Cabezas jaguar. 

Read more: The Effects of A Border Wall on Wildlife

K9 gets second chance tracking AZ Jaguar

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Mayke is a Belgian Malinois who was born in Germany and educated at an enormous expense to track smugglers on the US-Mexico border. Somewhere along the way to Texas, the dog discovered her innate fear of large trucks. 

This fear would have made her unusable as smuggler detection dog. According to Chris Bugbee, a biologist for Conservation CATalyst who claimed the dog when border officials rejected her in 2012, the dog would "just freeze right up." 

Fortunately, Bugbee recognized an opportunity and gave the dog a second chance. These days, Mayke has a new purpose: to track the elusive jaguar. 

Now, however, it's believed that El Jefe is the last jaguar living in the United States. 

The two will never meet but Mayke sniffs out El Jefe’s scat and helps scientists understand the travels and habits of the jaguar, which is vital to preserving the big cat’s habitat.

Read more: K9 gets second chance tracking AZ Jaguar

Diet or Environment: What Caused Wild Hamsters to Eat Their Young

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I want to start out by saying I am by no means a food snob. I feel like we all do the best we can with the means we have available and while I’ll do my best to guide you to a quality diet that will most benefit your pets,

I’ll never lecture you for what you’re feeding. 

Okay - I take that back - there is one exception to this rule: If you’re feeding a vegan diet to cats, then you’ll WISH you had entered the 7th circle of hell by the time I get done with you. Carnivores need carnivorous diets. If you don’t like that, or you can’t do that, don't get a cat as a pet. Get a bird. Or a horse. Or a cow. There are lots of herbivores that need homes. 

But, other than that important exception, I don’t judge... 

Recently, there was an important discovery made about hamsters and this applies no matter WHAT species you feed and we want you to know about it. 

Read more: Diet or Environment: What Caused Wild Hamsters to Eat Their Young

A Guide To Raising Butterflies

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There is nothing that captures the imagination like butterflies. They are the original “shape-shifter” which makes them our hero bug. Chances are good that you don’t get to see a lot of them in your neighborhood, but we have a way that can change: Raise your own butterflies.

Raising butterflies can be a wonderful way to enjoy nature in your own backyard. But just as with all animals, butterflies (and caterpillars) are delicate creatures that require specific care.

Choosing A Species

There are thousands of butterfly species. To begin with, you never want to introduce a species that isn't native to your area. The best way to find a caterpillar (the earliest stage of a butterfly), is to first look in y our backyard. If you're not sure which types naturally live in your area, there are many guides (and even a few free apps) that you can use to identify different species. This is part of the fun! Enjoy the process as you learn the names of trees and bushes on your hunt for a caterpillar.

(For a free guide to the most common ones in North America, click here for a download that shows you some of the most common types from Butterflies.org).

Read more: A Guide To Raising Butterflies

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