How to Rescue Pets from Flea and Ticks

Spring and Summer are probably the best seasons for any pet to go outdoors and play. Hiding inside the bush, rolling on the grass, and trotting along the park are few of the popular activities of dogs. Although, the seasons are popular for their hue and beauty, they also serve as the beginning of the arrival of many unwanted guests –Flea & Tick.

The soft, warm fur of your pets provide the safest environment for fleas and ticks to breed. These parasites feed on your pet’s blood and can cause health problems ranging from allergic reactions to serious tick-borne illnesses.

Female fleas can lay 40 to 50 eggs a day. That can lead to an infestation in days.

Fleas and ticks are more common during the warmer months that may last until the winter. The infected pets can spread illness to their human counterparts as well.

Signs of Flea & Ticks Infestation

  • Flea droppings, which look like dark specks, in the fur
  • Flea eggs, which look like white specks, in the fur
  • Excessive licking or scratching
  • Scabs or hot spots on the skin

Flea & Ticks Complications

  • Flea or Ticks infection can lead to significant blood loss or anemia over time.
  • The lack of red blood cells can be life-threatening for young dogs and cats.
  • Ticks also carry diseases, such as Lyme disease (a bacterial infection).

How to Remove Fleas & Ticks

  • Use gloves or tissue to cover your hands.
  • Grasp the tick with tweezers from the side, by its head, close to the skin.
  • Pull straight up. Don't twist.
  • Don't squeeze (or pop!) the bloated belly.

Flea & Tick Prevention

Flea & Tick Shampoo

Flea and tick shampoo is mainly useful for killing the parasites present on your pets. It doesn’t work as well to prevent fleas and ticks. You can buy the shampoo without a prescription, but follow the directions carefully. While applying the shampoo, you need to cover the animal’s entire body and wait 10 minutes before rinsing.

Collars

Flea collars can be useful to ward off fleas and ticks, however, puppies and kittens may need flea collars with a lower dose of chemicals. Wash your hands with soap and water after you handle it.

Tablets

Some oral tablets can be useful to prevent flea and tick infection. One type is a quick fix that kills adult fleas within 30 minutes. You can consider giving it to your pet daily. Other medications can keep flea eggs from hatching. Some flea medications need a prescription. Also, there are dogs-only oral products that kills fleas and ticks. Check with your vet to see which treatment is right for your pet.

Skin Treatments

Most skin treatments consist of creams that can be applied on pet’s skin. You put these treatments on your dog or cat’s back. They work well for a month. Some kill fleas and ticks as well.


Be careful and take precaution while taking your pets out of the house.

March is Pet Poison Prevention Month

Making your home hygienic and safe is critical to avoiding pet poisoning because more than 90% of poisonings occur at home. Pets have a habit of nibbling on leftover, scavenging the dust bin, and ingesting pills on the floor.

Basic Food that causes Pet Poisoning

Many foods commonly found in the kitchen are toxic to our pets. Avoid giving your pets a taste of the following:

  • Chocolate
  • Xylitol (sugar-free gum/peanut butter)
  • Grapes
  • Raisins
  • Alcohol
  • Yeast dough
  • Caffeine
  • Onions
  • Macadamias
  • Mushrooms

43% of pet-poison call was made for dogs that ingested over-the-counter-drugs, and 16% of calls were for dogs that helped themselves to foods that are safe for humans, but poisonous for dogs.

The overdose of dietary supplement and vitamins were another cause for pet poisoning.

Although it’s hard to determine the poisoning, you must look out for these signs to provide immediate medical treatment.

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargy
  • Drooling
  • Twitching
  • Tremors
  • Seizure

Some of the other major pet poisoning problems are;

a. Irregular Heartbeats from Dog Poisoning

Ingestion of items such as jimson weed, kalanchoe, milkweed, mountain laurel, and oleander can cause an irregular heartbeat.

b. Kidney Failure from Poisoning

Antifreeze poisoning can cause your dog kidney failure and the inability to produce urine. Plants can also cause kidney damage. House plants such as dieffenbachia, Easter lily, caladium, pigweed, and philodendron can cause antifreeze poisoning that can lead to pet’s kidney damage.

c. Liver Damage from Dog Poisoning

Eating medications like acetaminophen and plants such as tansy ragwort or rattlebox can cause liver damage in pets.

d. Loss of Blood from Dog Poisoning

Ingesting rat or mouse poison can cause loss of blood from the stool. Eating onion, garlic, sweet clover, or bracken fern could also lead to anemia.

e. Neurological Symptoms from Dog Poisoning

Accidentally eating antidepressants, alcohol, aspirin, drain cleaners, dishwasher soap, gasoline, marijuana, flea repellents, tobacco, furniture polish, and strychnine can lead to severe neurological ailments in pets. The seizure is a common problem created by poisoning. Bite from breeds of snakes, spiders, toads, and frogs can cause the seizure.

How to Prevent Pet Poisoning

1. Keep Cabinets and Doors Locked

You must consider keeping your kitchen and bathroom cabinets closed all the time. The shelf which are in pets reach should be locked, so they can’t open it. Do not throw unused or expired medications in the garbage can.

2. Be Aware of Poisonous Household Products

Most household products such as lotions, creams, perfume, and house plants can cause fatal poisoning in pets. You should determine what things can be poisonous to your pets and consider keeping them away.

3. Stay Informed

Be mindful of the types of products, food, and plants you bring into your home. Also, keep the number of emergency services and veterinary care in reach. It is essential to have the local poison control phone number accessible and added to your mobile phone’s contact list. Better yet, download an app!


Always be careful when it comes to the life of your pet! Keeping in mind the safety first is important to ensure their health and wellness.

5 Safe Pets to Keep at Home

Who doesn’t love keeping a pet? The adoration for innocent animals excite every person to own and care for a pet.

Over 70% of U.S. Households own pets of various kinds. Some of the most popular pets people love to keep are freshwater fish, cats, dogs, and birds.

Some of the most common and safe pets to around house are;

Freshwater Fish

Over 12.5 million households in the U.S. own freshwater fish as a pet. Undoubtedly, fish is the most beloved pet in the entire country. The exotic marine species are most loved for their innocence, vibrant color, agility, and decoration. Although it can be crucial to maintaining hygiene of the aquarium to ensure the safety of fish, people do often manage time to take care of their pet.

Keeping freshwater fish has been linked to health benefits such as reducing stress and lowering your blood pressure and heart rate.

Rabbit

Rabbits are one of the most beloved pets around the world. Many people choose the furry animal for their playfulness, innocence, and temper. Rabbits are also one of the frequent pets who are abandoned in the animal shelter. You can help save this innocent animal from landing in the shelter throughout their life. They are also home and children friendly.

Dog

Dogs are undoubtedly the most beloved pet around the world. There are over 65 million dogs in the U.S. household. Although they are loved and cared for, dogs can often be a victim of the disease, illness, and other ailments. You should provide necessary vaccines, keep their kennel clean, and house-train them.

Cat

Cats are another most popular pet around the world. In the U.S. alone, Cats exceed the number of house pet in comparison to dogs, mostly because a cat owner is likely to keep multiple cats as pets. Unfortunately, cats also account for one of the frequent pets who are found in animal shelters.

Birds

Birds often make great pets however they require special attention from their owners. They are most beloved for their gentleness, friendliness, and look. Budgies, Cockatiels, Cockatoos, Parrotlets, and Hyacinth Macaws are a few of the most kept bird pets in the U.S.

National Love Your Pet Day

Let us celebrate the existence of companion animals in our life. February 20 is celebrated as the National Love Your Pet Day throughout the U.S. The day is set aside to give extra attention to and pamper your pets.  This is a good day to focus on the special relationship that you have with your pets.

Either you’re a Dog mom, pet sitter, or a shelter volunteer — no matter what your interaction is with the animal, loving and caring for them is the best thing you can always do. And, it really doesn’t matter if your pet is a dog, cat, horse, birds, or even apes, you can always find the right opportunity to spend more time with them.

Consider enjoying this day with your pet by indulging in various fun activities.

Here are 5 things you can do with your pet

Take them for a long walk or hiking

Are you’re a dog owner, cat owner, or a horse owner? Consider taking your favorite companion for a long walk on this day. You can take them to their favorite place such as the park, by the river, and a beach.

If you’re an outdoor lover, you can consider taking them for the hiking to the woods, rocks, or even mountains. There can’t be anything better than enjoy outdoor and staying fit.

Shop for your Pet

Consider shopping for new toys, rugs, blanket, and shelter accessories for your pet. You can take them to pet stores to find their favorite new toy. Animals love choosing toys for themselves. Gifting them a new gift helps to combat animal depression.

Adopt a Pet or Visit Local Animal Shelter

About 6.5 million pets enter animal shelters nationwide every year.

Each year, approximately 1.5 million shelter animals are euthanized (670,000 dogs and 860,000 cats), simply because the pet shelters lack enough room for new pets and lesser pets are ever adopted.

It actually costs lesser to adopt a pet than buying a new one from the pet-farm or Puppy mills. Pet farms are the breeding center of pets that put profit above the welfare of dogs. The pets in farms are generally poorly housed.

Adopt a pet from your local shelter or rescue. There are more than just dogs and cats that need homes, pets such as bunnies, guinea pigs, hamsters, birds, and farm animals need forever homes too.

Give them a special treat

There is no special time to treat your favorite companion. Whether it’s a homemade dog biscuit or some catnip for your favorite kitty, consider giving your pet a treat in honor of National Love Your Pet Day.

Do care not to offer something that can prove to be health-hazardous like chocolates, cakes, seasoned meat etc.

Share moments in the Social Media

To encourage others to adopt new pets and to treat them right, you can share your own story or photos in the social media using the hashtag #NationalLoveYourPetDay. You can consider sharing when you and your pet met for the first time, like what were the initial challenges, and other unforgettable story or experience you share with your pet.

Showing the positive impact your dog has had on your life is a great way to show others that a dog might be right for them, too.

Dog's Daily Nutritional Chart [Infographic]

Maintaining a dog's daily nutritional intake is essential to ensure they remain healthy and safe throughout their life. Malnutrition or excess intake of minerals is common among most dogs. This can be prevented with proper diet chart provided by your veterinarian.

Here's a general guide for a dog's daily nutrition.

Do Rabbits make Good Pets?

Who doesn’t love the cute furry animal hopping around the house? Most people keep pet rabbits at home, however, many wonders if they make a good indoor pet or are they safer to keep around small children.

DID YOU KNOW? Male rabbits are called bucks; females are called does.

Rabbits have long been kept pets beginning from middle ages. They were kept as livestock in Ancient Rome. Cottontail Rabbits are the most common form of pet rabbits found in homes today.

Pros of owning a rabbit

  • They are intelligent animals
  • They are clean
  • They can be potty trained
  • They have a good lifespan

Things to remember while keeping a Rabbit

Expenses

Owning a pet rabbit is similar to owning a dog or a cat. It comes with added financial responsibility. You must provide housing, food, and proofing along with ongoing costs for supplements, litter, spay/neuter, and vet bills.

Housing

Rabbits are social animals. You should consider keeping them within your home in a form of puppy pen, bunny condo, or a large cage. Rabbits need social interaction, plenty of exercises, and a lot of enrichment activities, hence a homely environment is important to keep them indulge.

Bunny Proofing

Bunnies are quite curious and persistent creatures. You must consider bunny proofing your house to keep your things safe from being chewed. They will nibble on almost everything they may find, like you most important documents.

Enrichment

They tend to find their own fun activities if they get bored which can range from breaking things to chewing papers, rugs, and upholstery. You must consider providing them with entertainment to keep them indulged. Keep empty toilet paper rolls, old phone books, and other paper products into their shelter, so they can nibble on it.

Litter Training

The great thing about rabbits is that they can be potty trained. Most rabbits are potty trained when you bring them from a shelter, however, some of them forget their good habit once they move into their new home. The drastic change in the environment can be very stressful. You should be persistent and consider potty training them.

Nutrition

A rabbit’s nutritional needs vastly vary from that of a dog or a cat. Proper nutrition and in the correct amount is vital for a rabbit’s well-being. Fiber is the most staple diet of rabbits hence they must have access to unlimited grass hays at all times.

Pet rabbits need a high-fiber (18% to 22% DM), low-protein (12% to 16% DM) diet for maintenance. Timothy grass hay pellets should be fed for maintenance because they are lower in protein, calcium, and calories than alfalfa pellets.

Traveling

Traveling can be really stressful for rabbits. You should consider hiring a bunny-sitter while you’re away from home. They aren’t considered a flight-friendly animal, hence you can save yourself from the hassle by keeping them as a pet if you do not move around a lot.

Children and Rabbits

Rabbits should be supervised when small children are around. The DSPCA advises that because rabbits are physically delicate and require specialized veterinary care, they are not appropriate for families with young children

February is Spay/Neuter Awareness Month

February is recognized as “Spay and Neuter Awareness Month” throughout the U.S.  The purpose of celebrating the day is to encourage pet owners to get their pets sterilized before the arrival of spring and summer months.

Spring and summer are associated with the rampant overproduction of puppies and kittens. The experience can get really unmanageable for most animal shelters, hence, spaying and neutering helps to prevent the problem.

Although neutering and spaying are associated with fixing male and female pets respectively, neutering can be used in the case of both male and female pets. Castration, sterilizing, and fixing is few of the contemporary terms used by most people.

Benefits of Spaying and Neutering your Pets

a. Female pets live a longer and healthier life

Spaying has major health benefits to female pets. It helps prevent uterine infections and breast cancer, which is rampant in about 50 percent of dogs and 90 percent of cats. Spaying female pets before their first heat prevent from these diseases.

b. Neutering provides major health benefits to male pets

Besides preventing unwanted litters, neutering male dogs prevent testicular cancer and some prostate problems.

c. The spayed female won't go into heat

While cycles can vary, female cats usually go into heat four to five days every three weeks during breeding season. To attract males, they often yowl and urinate -sometimes all over the house! Spaying prevents female feline from going into heat.

d. The male dog won't want to roam away from home

An intact male often roams outside home to find a possible mate. Neutering your pet helps to keep them grounded and prevent unnecessary roaming outside the home.

e. Neutered males are well behaved

Neutered pets focus their attention on their human families. Unneutered dogs and cats generally mark their territory by spraying strong-smelling urine all over the house, and they tend to be aggressive. Neutering pets help to prevent aggression.

f. Spaying or neutering doesn’t make pets obese

Fixing your pets doesn’t invite obesity, lack of exercise and overfeeding does! Keeping your pet fit is more to do with daily diet, calorie intake, and exercise.

g. It is highly cost-effective.

Spaying and neutering pets cost lesser than you have imagined. It also prevents any unnecessary accidents, health issues which can cost more in the near future.

h. Good for Community!

Stray animals pose a real problem in a human settlement. They tend to prey on wildlife, invite car accidents, damage the local infrastructure, scratch or bite children etc. Spaying and neutering help to prevent aggression and overproduction of pups and kittens.

i. Education purpose

Millions of pets land in animal shelters every year, most of them are euthanized because only fewer pets ever get adopted. Fixing your pets helps to educate society including young children about the benefits of spay and neuter.

Control pet population

Every year, millions of cats and dogs of all ages and breeds are euthanized or suffer as strays. To prevent animals from landing up in animal shelters or outright being assaulted on street, you can consider spaying and neutering them to control the unnecessary childbirth.

National Cat Health Month

DID YOU KNOW? February is designated as the National Cat Health Month.

Sixty-eight percent of U.S. households, or about 85 million families, own a pet, according to the 2017-2018 National Pet Owners Survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association.

You will likely find more cats than dogs in the U.S., mainly because the Cat owners are likely to own more than one cat.

National Cat Health Month was founded to shed light into various health issues and treatment of cats in the country. Unlike dogs, cats are more wandering pets. A cat owner needs to be extra careful when it comes to caring a feline.

8 Tips to keep your Cat Happy

Annual Wellness Check

A wellness check or wellness examination is a periodic medical test of the pets to assess their overall health. A wellness examination may also be called a 'check-up' or a 'physical examination'.

The yearly checkup will allow you to catch any potential issues early, ensuring your furry friend stays in the best of health. A wellness check also includes prevention and treatment, so if it has any issues, the vet can clear it off.

Regular Vaccination

Most vaccinations are given during the wellness check, however, you should ensure to provide necessary vaccination to your cat at the right age. During the annual wellness check, your vet will review any necessary vaccinations to prevent your cat from contracting serious illnesses. Even indoor cats need protection against disease.

Spay or Neuter Your Cat

If you haven’t already done so, now’s a good time to do so. Spaying or neutering your cat prevents it from contacting many illness or diseases.  Along with ensuring population control, you can help prevent potential illnesses or conditions related to the reproductive organs.

Dental is Important!

By the age of 3, 70% of cats and 80% of dogs have some form of gum disease. The dental problem isn’t only persistent in senior pets.

Some of the common risks from the dental problem in pets are;

  • If your pet remains uncured from dental disease, they are at a higher risk of heart, kidney, and liver disease
  • Bacteria under the gum can travel to different internal organs.
  • Dental disease can result in bad breath, painful chewing, and tooth loss.
  • Broken teeth are a major concern among pets. Chewing on hard surfaces or materials can render their teeth weak. A broken tooth can expose the nerve of the tooth which can be a painful experience for your pet.

You should consider brushing your cat's teeth twice every week and visit for dental check a couple of times a year.

Feed Your Pet a High-Quality Diet

Cats are an obligate carnivore and can’t survive on a vegetarian diet. To stay healthy, your cat needs a high-quality protein based diet. You must include meat in their daily meal and avoid feeding them milk or milk-based food. Cats tend to be lactose intolerant.

Keep Your Kitty Active

You need to keep your cat active. An obese cat can attract many health issues including diabetes. Let your furry friend play, interact, and enjoy outdoor.

Pay Attention to the Litterbox

Cats are naturally clean, and most will instinctively use a litter box; you just have to show yours where it is. Don't place your cat in the box and make little scratching motions with their front paws. This will probably upset your cat and make them leery of the box. Scoop the box at least once daily and periodically wash it with dish liquid and hot water.

Celebrate Your Furry Friends

Spend time with your pet and let them know that you care. Remain a true companion to your pets.

10 Marine Mammals You Should Know About!

Marine mammals are probably the most exotic animals that have excited and fascinated human imagination. Most of these animals can surprise us with their remarkable intelligence and artistic ability. Unfortunately, most marine mammals have landed up in a zoo and amusement centers to please the crowd.

Pizza, a three-year-old polar bear, was kept inside an aquarium in a Chinese Mall for 2 years until the activists and millions of supporters signed a petition against the Chinese mall. ~NatGeo

Marine mammals are the aquatic species that rely on the ocean and other marine ecosystems for survival. Unlike fish, marine mammals are obligate water dwellers.

They belong to Mammalia genus and share several similar characteristics with all other mammals, like;

  • They breathe air for Oxygen
  • They are Warm-blooded animal
  • They give a live birth
  • They possess mammary gland.

Some sea mammals are semi-aquatic such as walrus and seals who dwell on land for mating, breeding, and molting, while few others are complete-aquatic such as whales and dolphins.

23% of marine mammal species are currently threatened.


10 Marine Mammals

Polar Bear

The polar bear is the largest terrestrial predator in the Arctic that depends on the marine ecosystem for survival. Although they are birthed on land, they spend most of their time on the sea ice. It is closely related to the brown bear (Ursus arctos). Adult polar bears can weigh over 1500 pounds (700 kg). Due to habitat loss caused by climate change, polar bears are classified as vulnerable species.

Dolphin

Dolphins are one of the aquatic mammals that depend on the marine ecosystem for survival. They belong to the Cetacea genus. Dolphin sizes may range from 1.7m (5.6ft) to 9.5m (31ft) and can weigh up to 11 short tons. Most dolphins face threats from climate change, habitat loss, marine pollution, and capture.

Thousands of dolphins are hunted in Japan and served as delicacy despite being banned by animal welfare society. Bottlenose dolphins are the most common species which are kept in captivity.

Blue Whale

Blue Whale is the largest known animal and the largest mammal in the world. They can reach a length of at least 110m (33m) and weigh up to 209 tons. Blue Whales are the most hunted animal in the world. They were prized hunt for most hunters in the twentieth century.

A 2002 report estimated there were 5,000 to 12,000 blue whales left in the world.

Bearded Seal

The bearded seal, also known as square flipper seal, is one of four Arctic seals that reside in and around the Arctic Ocean, as well as the Bering, Chukchi and Beaufort seas in Alaska. The largest northern phocid, they can weigh up to 300kg. They prey on clam, squid, and fish.  As members of the “true seal” family, the bearded seal is closely related to the gray seal and harp seal.

Narwhal

The Narwhals are probably the most majestic marine animals. They are a medium-sized toothed whale found mostly in the Arctic waters around Greenland, Canada, and Russia. The tusk is actually one of two teeth in the upper jaw and only reaches full length (over 6 feet/2 m) in sexually mature males. It is used to attract females and to fight off other males.


Some of the other marine mammals include Walrus, Sperm Whale, Dugong, Humpback Whale, Marine Otter, and Hourglass Dolphins.

National Seeing Eye Dog Day

DID YOU KNOW? January 28 is celebrated as the National Seeing Eye Dog Day.

Seeing Eye Dog Day is commonly known as Seeing Eye dogs, guide dogs or assistance animals usually assigned to lead blind and visually impaired people.

It isn’t unusual for the disabled to use the assistance of pets for their everyday chores. Assistance animals are specially trained to service dogs who assist their human companion to navigate on streets, help reach destinations, and help with daily chores.

It takes a lot to become an assistance animal. Generally, they are trained by the organization, often by their professional trainer. It generally takes between 3 and 9 months to train a dog in a ‘puppy stage.’ An assistance animal can stay with the handler for 8-9 years.

The initial cost for acquiring a Seeing Eye dog could go up to $50,000 with the ongoing cost going up to $1200 a year.

A brief history of Seeing Eye Dogs

Although the reference to first Seeing Eye dogs go back to 16th Century, the popular use of Seeing Eye dogs took place in Germany during World War I to help the returning veterans who were blinded in combat. US Senator Thomas D Schall became the first American to use a Seeing Eye Dog.

Earlier, the German shepherd was widely used as Seeing Eye Dogs, however, they have been replaced with Golden Retrievers, Labradors, and Golden Retriever/Labrador crosses for the handling ease.

Features of Seeing Eye Dogs

  • The dog must be specifically trained to mitigate the handler’s disability in some way, such as for example, opening doors, detecting allergens, and alerting to a ringing phone.
  • The dog must be trained to a high level not to be a nuisance in public, to be safe with members of the public and well behaved, as well as being healthy, and not posing a hygiene threat.
  • Some Assistance dogs wear vests, harnesses, lead sleeves or a patch but this is not required by law.

How are Seeing Dogs Trained?

Selection

The first process of training Seeing Dogs includes careful selection of pups. While selecting a pup the trainer will look into the health, temperament, breed, and characteristics of a dog. Most dogs are selected from reputable breeders, shelter homes, or those who are already are a part of a family.

Golden Retrievers, Labradors, and Golden Retriever/Labrador crosses are the most chosen breed for Seeing Dogs mainly because they remain healthy, good-tempered, gentle, highly sensitive, and tolerant towards their handlers.

Socialization

The initial process focuses on socializing the pet rather than the formal training. The pets are kept in a familiar and happy environment and are toilet trained, clean, confident and happy.

Task Training

Once a pup is old enough the trainer will commence the special training focusing on tasks. These tasks make them distinct and specialized assistance dogs.

In the USA an assistance dog handler may be asked if they have a disability, and what tasks the dog does to mitigate that disability as the only 2 legal questions to ascertain that a dog is indeed an assistance dog.

Generally, the tasks done by the Seeing Eye dog depends on the handler’s disabilities, therefore there is almost no limitation on the types of tasks a dog can be trained to.

Obedience and Public Access

Seeing Eye dogs are allowed to accompany their handlers in public areas along with pet restricted areas such as public transport, restaurants, or hotels. Obedience training helps a dog to become polite, well behaved and acceptable in public. Public Access tests evaluate a dogs’ ability to behave appropriately in public.