The Wet Nose Press Pet Blog

April 19, 2019
by Lynn Merton
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Can cats predict earthquakes

Image credits – Pixabay

Tales abound from time immemorial of cats knowing long before humans of an imminent earthquake. This could be the truth. If your kitty starts to behave oddly, then it may be time to pack your bags and run from the house. People with cats say they have seen their canines acting strangely days before the earthquake actually happened. The range of abnormal behavior exhibited by your cat begins from excessive meowing and whining to being frightened and anxious. Some kitties even get disoriented. A few cats have even run away to a far distance, with mothers taking their kittens with them.

Scientific explanations

It is amazing as to how cats can predict an earthquake even if modern technologies cannot. Many cat owners like to think their furballs are psychic, but of course, no animal is. According to many experts, cats are sensitive to the magnetic fields of the earth. This is how they know when trouble comes. Other animal researchers believe that more than magnetic fields, the kitties have ability to be sensitive, which permits them to feel minute tremors which occur much before a bigger earthquake strucks. Humans cannot feel these minuscule tectonic shifts.

Do understand that although a number of tales and anecdotes abound about cats giving advance warnings about earthquakes, there is no scientific evidence to support such an action. The nearest thing to any scientific proof was the Jim Berkland experiment done during the latter part of the 1980s and the earlier years of the 1990s. Berkland predicted the occurrence of earthquakes by scouring the lost cat advertisements in the local paper. He reasoned that cats could run away from home if there is any chance of an earthquake. His experiment was by and large successful. The problem is that science needs repeatable data and this experiment never got repeated and the testimonies given by cat owners are not admissible in such a context. This is why the scientific community continues to be skeptical, taking notice of kitties’ ability to predict earthquakes only after the disaster happened-and not before.

Making use of cats’ amazing abilities Cats have more amazing abilities than simply predicting earthquakes. Your cat is an expert when it comes to reading your body language. It knows exactly when you are going to feed her and beats you to the kitchen at that time. Conversely, the cat knows when you will give it medicines and makes itself scarce before you spell c-a-t. These felines does not only predict earth’s siesmic activity, it can also predict human behavior. Kitties can track their owners over thousands of kilometers. No wonder sailors in many cultures during ancient times would look towards cats to predict the weather. Many even took cats on ships to make themselves doubly safe.

April 18, 2019
by Lynn Merton
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Moving Globally with Your Dog

Image Credits: Pixabay

A lot of misconceptions abound when it comes to international traveling with dogs. These are present both in outbound (taking your dog out of the country) or inbound (arriving with your dog). If you wish to do either one of them, it is essential you consult a veterinarian who has in-depth experience with such bureaucratese. The person will not only instruct you how to do it but also calm your fears. If you are coming into the country, then the procedure is simple, the dog must have a rabies shot before it went to a foreign country. This shot should be given 30 days before departure. It is compulsory for dogs to undergo a rabies vaccination course. Some countries have a harder process. You need to show all the documentation. Blood samples are a must.

Diseases and government policies

If you are relocating to another country, and worry about exposing the dog to new diseases, it is recommended that you consult your veterinarian concerning the animal diseases in your would-be home. Go online and do research. Take your findings to the veterinarian to put your fears at rest. The process becomes more comfortable if you plan beforehand.

Do remember that government policies in your new country may not be the same as your existing one. You have to navigate an entirely different web of rules. Those experienced in moving with animals across borders recommend a pet relocation service. Yes, they are expensive, but worth it as you can enjoy peace of time and nor run around from one government department to another. If you want to do the documentation yourself, then it is recommended that you contact the embassy of your existing country in the new one. Most of the time, the embassy staff have already done the procedure and became adept at doing the same. Do look at various websites which state the better pet relocation services to go for. Some people are frequent flyers with their dogs and are experts in navigating animal control and customs, and they give proper, practical advice. If you are relocating with your family, let the dog go separately with the pet relocation service company. It means less headache for you.

Airline trouble If you do not opt for pet relocation services, the biggest hurdle when it comes to moving your dog is the documentation. There is also the whims of airline policies. A few allow dogs to sit with you in the cabin while others insist that the animal be transported in the hold. Search for flights with minimum transfers. There is a chance that your dog may get lost while changing planes. Do put in adequate amounts of food and water in the crate your dog will be transported in.

April 17, 2019
by Lynn Merton
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Leaving Your Dog Outside the House

Image Credits: Pixabay

You may have wondered whether it is safe to leave your dog outside the home for an extended period of time. Granted, your dog loves nothing more than prancing outside, running, jumping, and barking at random people and animals. The question is whether it is safe for the animal to remain outside for a better part of the day or even a couple of days. The dog may face many dangers like hostile weather conditions, poisonous plants, or even be attacked by other animals. It could also feel lonely after a few hours.

Safety is paramount

As an owner, it is your responsibility to make sure that your canine is safe from atmospheric elements like rain, sunshine, wind, and snow. Different kinds of weather mean various precautions to keep the dog safe. The dog must have the ability to enter your home or any shelter to take refuge from weather extremes. To give an example, if your dog loves nothing more than to laze in the sun, then the shelter must have cold water and shade. Conversely, if your dog loves to jump in the snow, then you should keep warm water in the house. If you do not maintain such precautions, then there is an even chance of the dog freezing or overheating to death.

Precautions

If you have an outdoorsy dog, buy a kennel. The small structure will give it some respite from hostile atmospheric conditions. Choose one which is waterproof and insulated. It must all completely block the rays of the sun. There is no need for the kennel to be a big one, it should be of sufficient size so that the dog feels comfortable inside. Put in warm blankets during winters and cold towels during summers. You should never leave the dog unattended for extended time periods-especially overnight. Any complication which may happen to the dog could turn worse if you do not know it has happened. Check your dog at regular intervals to see whether it is okay. Since the canine will spend many hours outside, get a fence which will confine the animal. The fence must be such that it cannot escape. The structure will also protect yours from predators like wild animals. Barriers like fences will be beneficial to keep the canine out of many places like backyard ponds and gardens. Ensure that the dog cannot access the garage area as it contains a number of toxic chemicals like gasoline and antifreeze. The presence of sharp tools could also kill or seriously injure the dog. The canine requires unfettered access to water and food. It must be able to relieve itself whenever it wants to do so. You can install doggie doors if it is a trained animal.

April 16, 2019
by Lynn Merton
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Separation Anxiety in Dogs

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Many dog parents complain that their four-legged companions are destructive when they are alone. The dogs are found to urinate, bark, dig, defecate, howl, or chew. Some even try to escape. These are not lack of manners but distress signs. If a dog shows anxiety or drools when its owners prepare to leave for office, then it can be surmised that the canine has separation anxiety. This happens when your dog is too much attached to you. The result is household destruction and even by consequence, self-injury. You will find such destruction to be around the exit points of the house, like doors or windows.

Extreme behaviors

A few dogs even go to the extent of trying to prevent their owners from leaving. It will start to bark and show distress symptoms a few minutes after you leave it alone in the house. As an owner, you aim to reassure the dog that all is well and there is nothing to fear. You should set things up in such a way that the dog does not experience anxiety or fear when you leave. It may also enjoy the few hours of solitude.

Counterconditioning

Counter-conditioning is an excellent solution if your dog suffers from mild separation anxiety. The counter-conditioning treatment is a process which changes the aggressive, fearful, or anxious reaction of the present to a relaxed and pleasant one. This is done by associating the presence or sight of a disliked person, object, animal or a situation with something nice, which the dog likes. The canine after a certain period learns that what it fears is in reality good for it. One example is you come back with treats every day or give your dog a puzzle to solve. Once the canine solves the puzzle, the box opens up to give it a treat. If you opt for the toy method, do not forget to remove the toy (and the associated gift) when you are at home. Do keep in mind that this solution will work only for dogs with mild separation anxiety as severely anxious dogs will not eat food in the absence of their owners. A complex counterconditioning and desensitization program is needed for moderate or severe instances of separation anxiety. It is important you gradually accustom your dog to be alone. Begin with a few short separations and then slowly increase the length of the time you are absent over a few weeks. Daily sessions are a must in such cases. The dog must not be afraid at any time during the process. If it does, the process will be a failure. It is a good idea to call a specialist in this case.

April 15, 2019
by Lynn Merton
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Home Grooming Your Cat

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A happy cat is invariably a clean cat. You can bathe your cat and trim its nails. It is also essential to keep your cat’s eyes, teeth, and ears clean. The fur too must be clean and healthy. Before you start grooming your cat at home, remember that a few cats hate being groomed. If your cat falls into this category, there is a high chance that your cat may attack and injure you. In such cases, make an appointment with a cat groomer or a veterinarian. Do not try to groom your kitty at home.

Cleaning and brushing

For all practical purposes, there is no need for you to clean and care for your cat’s fur. Your kitty cleans itself through her grooming tools- teeth and tongue. There are some days, however, that your cat becomes so dirty that you will be compelled to run it a bath. The process to clean the kitty should be of maximum efficiency and minimum stress.  It is a good idea to brush the cat. The action not only removes dead hair, grease, and dirt from your kitty’s fur but also stimulates the circulation of blood and removes flakes from the skin. A healthy glow can be had and kept if you brush your kitty twice a week. This is especially true for senior cats who slowly lose the ability to groom themselves.

Skin and shedding

Do pay close attention to the skin of your cat. The skin condition indicates your kitty’s overall health. The cat will scratch itself excessively in-case of a bad skin condition. There will also be an excess of licking or chewing. The skin is vulnerable to external parasites and also to allergies emanating from stress and seasonal changes. A combo of these could also be a problem. It is important to investigate the factors which affect the skin of your cat. Most cat owners visit the veterinarian to deal with their cat’s skin problems.  Your cat sheds hair due to natural causes. It is a process of off-loading dead hair. Cats which spend most of their time indoors may shed all through the year. You can minimize the accompanying inconvenience by regularly grooming the cat. Vacuum the house to get rid of cat hair. Take note that while shedding is natural, having bald patches are not. This can be due to an underlying health problem. You must take your cat to the veterinarian. The ears of your cat can pick up sounds like you opening a bag of food on the other end of the house. Like all other organs, the kitty needs some help when it comes to keeping the ears clean. Examine the ears for wax and debris and clean them.