October 10, 2014
by Sam Bourne

Study Shows Your Cat is Faster and Stronger Than a Tiger


A new study in which researchers tracked the activity of a dozen domestic cats shows that, when it comes to the habits of our furry little friends, still waters run deep.

Sure, they are more than happy sitting on your lap and chasing around that catnip mouse with the bell on its tail, but when they are away from prying eyes, house cats really know how to unleash the beast.

The Study

The data, collected from the GPS trackers and pressure sensors on the roving cats, shows that not only do our seemingly timid tabbies participate in some pretty hardcore hunting when on the prowl, but they also do so with much the same skill and agility as tigers, lions, and other large cats.

The Results

Much like tigers, house cats rarely straighten their legs when stalking prey, even while running. This instinctual pose shows that, despite how comfortable they are on our sofas, they are still very much at home in the hunt.

Not only to they embody the same instinct for hunting as their larger cousins, but they execute on it with arguably a greater efficiency. That’s right – pound for pound, your cat is stronger and faster than a fully grown tiger. Not only that, but domesticated cats exceed the flexibility of any other large cat by leagues, giving them yet another clear advantage in the hunt.


A true killing machine

What’s more, the average house cat can jump a whopping five times their height, a skill that gives them the ability to take down creatures both on the ground and midair. Also, their unique skeletal structure also helps to cushion themselves after a fall, ensuring that when they do leap after some prey, they can recover quickly. To put a number to it, cats have been recorded as walking away from falls as high as 300 feet – that’s as tall as the Statue of Liberty!

A cat with the insatiable need to feed can kill a mouse in as little as 2 seconds, but since most cats do not rely on hunting as a source of food, they tend to hunt more for fun. What that means is that, rather than giving their prey a swift death, our house cats have a tendency to unleash their inner serial killer and play with their catch a little before sending them off to their great reward.

So next time you look at your cat, just know that somewhere underneath their fluffy, loving, and lazy personality lies the heart and mind of one of the most finely tuned killing machines on earth. Good thing they only weigh 9 pounds.


Daily Mail – Cats are better hunter than TIGERS: Domestic felines are more agile and powerful than their cousins, experts claim

October 9, 2014
by Sam Bourne

Westminster Adds 2 New Show Dogs – Could Yours Be One?


Westminster is where the top dogs come to show off their stuff in front of a panel of expert judges. According to New York Daily News, the Kennel Club revealed two new breeds that will be competing next year at the 139th iteration of the annual event. Falko, a 13-month-old Wirehaired Vizsla, and Luna, a 2-year-old Coton de Tulear, are the proud members of their breed to break into Westminster.


A Viszla

Hungarian hunting dogs, Vizslas are lean and athletic, with wiry dense coats that help protect them from inclement weather. While typically hyper by nature, Falko was relaxed enough during the big reveal after taking a nap prior to his introduction.


A Coton de Tulears

Coton de Tulears hail from Madagascar, but this pooch is a native New Yorker herself. Luna’s fluffy white hair stuck out next to Falko’s smooth brown coat as the pup shined during her close-ups. While the two dogs were friendly, that may not continue come February 2015, when they square off among other competitors at the official show in Madison Square Garden.

With the addition of these pooches, the Kennel Club competition officially recognizes 192 breeds as possible entries. However, there are still a number of canines left off the show’s list of participants, such as Goldendoodles, Puggles and Cockapoos, due to their status as mixed breeds.

Breeds that are runner ups as show dogs
VetStreet explained that more than half of the dogs on the American Kennel Club’s list of most popular breeds haven’t taken home Best in Show. While well-loved by many owners, these particular pooches have never been able to win over the judges’ hearts throughout Westminster’s storied history.

  • Labrador retriever: Despite being one of the most popular dogs in the U.S., these reliable and versatile pups have never worn the champion’s crown. They’re loyal companions who serve well as hunting partners, athletes, service dogs and search and rescue specialists. Nevertheless, it hasn’t been enough to be the big winner.
  • Boston terrier: Sadly, this pup’s sleek tuxedo-like coat has never won the grand prize at Westminster – even though they’re one of the few breeds to originate in the U.S. Bred to be a best friend and partner, this little pooch is waiting for his chance to share the limelight with other perennial runner-ups.

Past winners who dominate
While it’s shocking to see popular breeds like the Labrador never earn a victory, there are certain breeds that have brought home multiple first place finishes at Westminster. CNBC explained that some dogs have nabbed the title enough times to be considered the most successful breeds in the competition’s long history.

  • Airedale terrier: Believed to have originated in the Valley of Aire in England, the Airedale is the largest of the terrier breeds. They’ve won four grand prizes at Westminster, most likely due to their sweet temperament and soft coat.
  • Boxer: This lovable breed is tied with the Airedale for victories, but is more popular in the U.S. Their protective personalities and curious nature make them perfect family dogs, as they love affection and playing with children.
  • Fox terrier: These pooches have dominated Westminster with a whopping total of 17 first place finishes combined between smooth fox and wire fox terriers. They originated in the British Isles in the 17th century and were bred to drive game from their dens during hunting trips. Today, they’re known as excellent watch dogs.

Show dogs take a lot of time and attention to be perfect, and with a PetPlus membership, owners can have access to leading supplements and organic foods that keep their dogs fit and healthy for events like Westminster.


October 7, 2014
by Sam Bourne

Why Black Dogs Are Adopted Last and How You Can Help

Learn About the Best Breeds of Black Dogs

Learn About the Best Breeds of Black Dogs

Black dogs get a bad rap when living in crowded animal shelters. These dark, sleek pups are among the last to be adopted by families, despite having big hearts full of waiting affection.

This has led to the development of National Black Dog Day, which occurred on Oct. 1, 2014, AL.com reported. Altogether, black pets are considered the least adoptable in shelters due to a host of stigmas, such as the association of black fur with evil or that these pooches look scary and intimidating. Sometimes, the issue can even be that they don’t show up as well in photographs as light-colored dogs, leaving families to skip over them in favor of more photogenic breeds.

The event has its own website now, detailing the plight of black dogs and the prejudice they can face at shelters. National Black Dog Day is devoted to creating public awareness about these beautiful pups and the joy they can bring to any home around the country.

Showing people the ‘light’ of black dogs
While the stigmas might sound far-fetched, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals corroborates the poor experiences black dogs have in shelters. But these findings shouldn’t dissuade owners from adopting these pooches, as they need loving homes like any other canines.

Paw Nation compiled a list of the top black dog breeds owners should bring into their families. Its choices included:

  • Rottweilers: These large pooches originated in Germany and, unfortunately, get a bad rap due to their intimidating stature. However, Rottweilers are great family pets and love their owners, acting protective of children when playing outside the house or in dog parks.
  • Doberman pinschers: Similar to Rottweilers, Dobermans hail from Germany and have very distinct pointed ears and sleek black coats. Many owners might use these fast, strong pooches as viable guard dogs, but they also love to cuddle up on the couch and nap the day away.
  • Newfoundlands: These canines share a striking resemblance to Bernese mountain dogs, except that their coats are practically jet black. Their strong frames make Newfoundlands great lifeguards around the pool, able to jump in and rescue drowning victims in a flash. They even have large enough lungs to swim long distances without tiring.
  • Portuguese water dogs: Curly hair and long bodies make these pups stand out among light- and multicolored pooches. The Portugueses’ coats are hypoallergenic and non-shedding, making them ideal for families with young children.
  • Neapolitan mastiffs: Saggy jowls aren’t the only identifying aspect of these mammoth dogs, as they can weigh more than 150 pounds once they reach maturity. Despite their physical stature, Neapolitans love to frolic outside and play with their owners any chance they get.

Once you decide on the right black dog to bring home with you, sign up for a PetPlus membership to instantly gain access to an array of supplements and prescription medications that will keep your pooch healthy day in and day out.


October 6, 2014
by Sam Bourne

This Special Cat Has a Little Dog In Him – Literally



Buttercup is basically just your standard orange tabby. He never saved a child from bullies or ran across America to find his long lost family. On the surface he is nothing more than a cat. Go a little deeper, however, and what do you find?

Dog blood.

That’s right. Coursing through Buttercup’s veins is a proprietary blend of cat and Greyhound.

How It Began


As you likely assumed, Buttercup was not born this way. The ordeal began when Buttercup’s owner noticed that he was acting a bit lethargic. After a visit to the vet, it was concluded that he was dangerously anemic, with a red blood cell count as low as 7%. The vet determined that he was in need of an immediate transfusion.

While it may come as a bit of a surprise, it can be quite difficult to get your hands on a couple of pints of viable cat blood at such short notice, even for a vet; let alone getting it in the correct blood type!

With time being a major factor for Buttercup’s survival, a choice had to be made. And the choice was for a xenotransfusion – a ten dollar word for taking one animals blood and putting it in another. Now, I cannot speak to why dogs’ blood would be any easier to acquire than cat blood, but it is.

But How?


While transfusing blood from an entirely different species generally presents a bit of a hurdle, for Buttercup and cats everywhere, there exists a nifty loophole. Cats lack the antibodies to ward of the antigens found in dog blood. That means a cat’s body won’t have the ability to identify the fluids as being foreign, allowing for a successful xenotransfusion.



However, this is only a one shot deal. After the initial transfusion, the cat’s body will produce the necessary antibodies to fight against canine antigens from here on out.

Lucky for Buttercup, the one shot is all it took. Since the transfusion, Buttercup has been more active and high spirited. He is on steroids and antibiotics to help with the transition to having dog blood, but the medications aside, Buttercup’s outlook is looking up.

Now we’re just waiting for a story about an orange tabby that fetches sticks, chases mailmen, and barks.



Miami Herald – It’s Cat-Dog! Keys feline gets blood transfusion from dog
UPI – Dog blood transfusion saves cat’s life

October 1, 2014
by Sam Bourne

Surf Pups Highlight the Thrill of Athletic Dogs

Surf Pups Highlight the Thrill of Athletic Dogs

Surf Pups Highlight the Thrill of Athletic Dogs

While the summer season may technically be over, warmer parts of the nation have people still running outdoors and swimming to beat the heat. Although many humans like to “hang 10″ and surf the waters of California, some pooches love to get their paws wet on the surfboard.

RT News reported that dozens of canines – all shapes, sizes and ages – participated in the sixth annual Surf City Surf Dog competition that was held in Huntington Beach, California, on Sept. 28, 2014. The event drew roughly 2,500 people and raised more than $6,000 for nonprofit partners who helped spread the word about the contest. Approximately 65 pooches paddled out to face the waves and shred the Pacific Ocean.

Breeds were broken up into various categories based on size, from small, to medium, to extra large. There were even tandem teams of canines who were eager to hit the water together. All pooches who participated received a medal, with winners from each category also earning a commemorative award for their prowess on the surfboard. Champions were granted a $25 gift certificate to local pet shops.

According to RT, dog surfing was first mentioned in the U.S. during the 1920s. Since then, it’s taken off in popularity thanks to events like the Surf Dog competition in Huntington Beach. However, surfing isn’t the only sport that canines have sunk their paws into.

Learn the best athletic dog activities
It’s well-known that the majority of canines love to play as much as humans do. Running around outside is one of the best ways to keep your young pooch both mentally and physically challenged, Better Homes and Gardens magazine explained. Anything that lets your furry friend’s natural instincts run wild is a fun option!

  • Agility: According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Agility is a sport that pits your athletic dog against the clock. With you as a guide, your dog races to complete a challenging obstacle course that tests his or her ability to change directions, follow orders and move with speed. This sport can be done competitively against other canines or just for fun in your own backyard. While it takes a lot of time and dedication, it helps forge a strong bond between dog and owner through extensive training.
  • Dock diving: The image of a canine leaping into the water after a toy might sound picturesque, but this is a real dog sport that’s been around for almost 20 years. Better Homes and Gardens explained that this popular sport started in 1997 and has dogs compete to see who can jump the farthest from an elevated platform or dock. It’s reached such popularity that contests are frequently featured on cable TV from areas across the country. Typically, larger breeds like Labrador and Chesapeake Bay retrievers are the leading dock divers.
  • Flyball: The ASPCA suggested this game is fun for both pooches and owners alike. Your canine is grouped with four other athletic dogs and must sprint over a series of jumps along a 51-foot course, touch a trigger that releases a ball, then retrieve the ball and bring it back to the starting line so the next team member can repeat the process. The first group to return all five balls is the winner! If this kind of intense and healthy competition interests you, check out the North American Flyball Association website to learn more about this community.

Canines can be amazing athletes with the right practice. By joining PetPlus, you gain access to dozens of discounted accessories that facilitate training, such as harnesses and treats. Sign up today and start saving!