The Wet Nose Press Pet Blog

August 14, 2018
by Lynn Merton
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Leaving your cat alone

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Those who live with cats know that kitties are not that much independent as they want to show. If you own a cat, your presence is important to its existence. This has nothing to do with the reasoning that you are its sole source of food and shelter. To your kitty, you are more than someone who fills up its water bowl.

Infant kittens must not be alone

There would be times when you would leave your cat for a night or even longer. Do note that kittens less than four months old must not be left alone under any circumstances. If you do leave them, come back within four hours. If your kitten is above eight months, you can leave it to its own devices for a maximum of eight hours. It follows that the time you leave your cat alone depends on its age. Environment and diet also play a part. Grown-up cats can stay alone for as long as 48 hours if they have adequate dry food and water. More than that is impossible as the litter box fills up and the water becomes undrinkable.

If you have to leave your cat, take a series of steps to make sure your absence becomes a low-stress affair on him. Ask your veterinarian for quality advice on this subject. If you live in a hot climate, leave the house with the air-conditioner on. Your cat is at risk of a heat wave. It also makes an excellent buying decision to order a good quality automatic pet feeder. This device opens for a specific microchipped cat. The food is also kept fresh.

Adequate food and water are vital

Leave adequate quantities of water prior to exiting your home. Fill the regular water bowl and also place a few more water bowls around the house. Buy a good pet water fountain. This machine aerates the water. The continuous flow of water attracts your kitty to drink the liquid frequently. There is no harm in adding a second litter box. This will help when the first one fills up, pushing the cat to use other places. Acquaint your cat with the second litter box before you go. Doing this makes for a cleaner home.

Like you, the cat also likes to watch television shows. Leave the machine on so that the canine would not feel alone. Treat it to a new resting place high near the roof or a cozy one near the window. A new scratching post will also be welcomed by the cat.

It is a good idea to add a new cat to the house before you go. Select one younger than your present cat and of the opposite sex. This arrangement will make the home much less lonely for your cat when you will be absent.

August 13, 2018
by Lynn Merton
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Here’s what you might be doing wrong while training your feline

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Cats are the animal equivalent of teenagers. They have a fierce sense of independence. Cats want space and another place to brood. It is thus harder to train cats compared to dogs. The good news is that they can be trained. Post-training, the cat may actually sit on your lap when you want it to or stop scratching your favorite sofa.

Be realistic from the beginning. Your cat will not kowtow to your every command. They do not want to showcase their skills in front of anyone, let alone your friends. If you think your cat has really bad behavior, then take her to the veterinarian. There could be underlying physical issues.

Clicker training

If your cat has an attitude problem, then you may look into clicker training. These techniques are made on scientific principles where positive behavior is encouraged and reinforced with clicking sound. A clicker is used as it conveys only one meaning. Your voice to the cat brings multiple meanings. Training with a clicker could be time-consuming, but it is an excellent investment.

You could also offer treats to your cat to make it learn new tricks. This is similar to humans when parents treat children so that they complete their homework within the correct time period. Reinforcing positive behaviors with treat works wonders. Whatever you do, it is not a good practice to punish your cat. Punitive behavior does not help. The worst outcome in such a case is that your cat will be afraid of you, leading to a greater number of obstacles in the future. If you get frustrated, pause for a few minutes and start again.

Litterbox and scratchers

Litterbox training is vital both for your cat and also for yourself. If you are lucky, your cat will walk outside to do its thing, but most cats are too lazy to walk out of the house. It is important to familiarize them with the all-important litterbox. Your cat could be surprised when it first sees this particular piece of equipment. It is your job to familiarize your cat with its new litter box. If your cat continues to poop outside the box, place its feces inside it. This will make your cat understand as to why this box was presented to him in the first place. Cats are hygienic creatures and thus will pick up the new habit fairly quickly.

It is a good idea to spend money on cat scratchers. Buy as much as you can. They are required as your cat may scratch up everything under the sun and ruin your carefully decorated furniture. Offer your lovable fluff something it can scratch. Both of you will be happy. The cat will scratch away happily and you can enjoy seeing it doing that.

August 10, 2018
by Lynn Merton
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Why you probably shouldn’t let your cat bite your hand

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A little cat nip is actually your kitty’s way of showing love. These love bites come after purring, rubbing against you, and cuddling. Only a few bites are actual aggression signs. It is easy to understand the difference between love bites and an actual attack.

Cat communication

Cat love bites are a kind of communication. The instinctive nature of your kitty prompts it to give you little bites, especially when it is overstimulated. Cats engage in this kind of behavior when it feels it must bond with you.

As an owner, it is vital that you understand the difference between love bites and an attack. Although both are bites, the causes and the cut to your body will be vastly different. Your cat may even give you a small nip if it is tired and you wish to play with it. Conversely, it may bite you when it wants you to give her love and affection. It is important you understand the behavior of your cat so that you can adjust your behavior accordingly.

Primeval instinct

Majority of the kittens like to play rough. This is not only social bonding but also preparation for adulthood. Mock hunting leads to small bites. Kittens bite when they play aggressively with you. One obvious difference between a love bite of a cat and its aggressive bite is the effect on the skin. The outer layer of our body is not broken by a love bite. The latter occurs when you two are playing. An attack bite may suddenly happen. If your kitty suddenly bites you, and the cut is quite deep, then you should desist from continuing the behavior you were doing at that time. In case your cat continues to be aggressive, take it to an animal behavior expert or to a veterinarian.

Treatment

You should treat your bite as quickly as possible. This is as cats have small teeth and this may result in bacterial injection into the skin. Wash the wound as best as you can with plentiful water and soap. Visit a doctor as soon as you can. The doctor will examine the wound, and ensure it does not get infected.

Cat love bites are painful to an adult. To a child, the bite of a cat is sheer torture. This is as they have soft and sensitive skin. If you worry that your child will suffer from love bites from your kitty, then it is important that you teach them how to handle felines. Have an experienced babysitter handle the cat’s appropriate behavioral treatment. Your cat must be attuned to all your family members. Make your children understand not to interact with the family kitty when it is in an overly playful mood.

August 9, 2018
by Lynn Merton
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How to care for dogs with anxiety

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Like humans, dogs suffer from anxiety. All breeds are susceptible to this mental complication. Anxiety can result in multiple behavioral problems. As a dog owner, you must treat your anxious pet. It is your responsibility to help it live a happy life with canine anxiety.

Multiple reasons

Dogs suffer from canine anxiety due to multiple causes. The frequent reasons are fear, aging, and separation. Fear comes from strange people and loud noises. Abnormal environments and even out of the ordinary attire can trigger anxiety attacks in dogs. Wood floors are a major cause for dog anxiety. Separation anxiety happens when dogs are separated from family members or left alone. This gets exhibited in abnormal behaviors like defecating everywhere inside the house and destroying furniture. Anxious dogs continuously bark. Older dogs suffer from CDS or cognitive dysfunction syndrome. This is similar to Alzheimer’s disease which happens in humans. Aging anxiety happens in senior dogs.

Symptoms

Dogs show multiple anxiety symptoms like aggression, drooling, destructive behavior, excess barking, restlessness, urinating or defecating everywhere within the house, panting, depression, pacing, or repetitive behaviors. Among all these the worst is aggression. This is dangerous to you and your family.

Take your dog to a veterinarian if it shows any or all of these symptoms. The medical professional will help you to understand the causes of such abnormal behaviors. A veterinarian will also eliminate any medical cause for such behavior. Additionally, the vet will also prescribe a proper treatment plan. As a number of factors coalesce to form anxiety, the surest way to treat is through a blend of preventative strategies and training. The vet may also offer medications if they are needed.

Treatment

As a dog owner, you can adopt a number of training strategies to treat anxiety. Counterconditioning is one such method. The aim is to change your dog’s usual response to anxiety-inducing stimuli like substituting the aggressive behavior with desirable behavior like focusing on the owner or sitting quietly. Desensitization is also another excellent strategy. You can gradually introduce your dog to the anxiety source. This is done in small increments. Rewarding positive behavior and repeated exposure will help in managing canine anxiety. If you are unable to do these on your own, contact professional dog trainers to achieve these outcomes.

If your dog suffers from major anxiety, then your veterinarian could recommend medications. Antidepressants can be prescribed for dogs suffering from extreme anxiety. If your dog is afraid of fireworks or thunderstorms, then the vet may prescribe medication like benzodiazepine in combination with an anti-depressant so that the canine can manage stress. Senior dogs suffering from CDS may benefit from intake of a selegiline, a drug known to reduce CDS symptoms. The same drug is used to treat chronic anxiety.

August 8, 2018
by Lynn Merton
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Adopting a deaf cat

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Deaf cats look like ordinary felines so it is hard to discern a deaf animal from a perfectly normal one. They do not fit the mental image of any disabled animal like the absence of one eye or a leg. It is a hidden issue. If you want to adopt a deaf cat, it is important to have knowledge concerning how to manage the beautiful feline.

Reasons for deafness

Cats become deaf due to a number of reasons. It is hard to comprehend as the process is gradual. The cat’s eardrums become progressively less flexible. Sounds do not get transmitted easily and in an effective manner. You may find a deaf cat not acknowledging your presence when you come home from work. A few cars are born either completely or partially deaf due to “congenital deafness”, a genetic defect. The latter is related to the animal’s pigmentation, and a majority of deaf cats in this category possess a majorly white or an all-white haircoat. Do note that these cats are not albino. You can differentiate between an albino and a deaf cat by observing the color in their eyes or part of the haircoat. There is no substance to the rumor that most white cats are deaf.

Behavioral observations

If you have any doubts about whether your kitty is deaf, observe it carefully. A deaf canine usually looks at its hearing enabled counterpart to understand what is happening in the immediate environment. Other than that, its behavior is exactly like a normal cat, jumping all over the house. The deafness becomes more prominent when only the deaf animal is present in the house. The deaf animal enjoys a sound sleep and startles easily. It may not notice when you walk inside a room. If you observe these behaviors, confirm them by rattling objects when it is near. If the cat remains unperturbed, then it is a surety that your pet is deaf.

Do not worry about other diseases if your cat is deaf. The condition is not linked with any other disease. You must use visual cues to communicate with your deaf cat. One example is when you call it, extend your one hand to “call” it. If you are angry, communicate your anger by waving your arms above the head. You can also squirt water from a bottle towards it if you are angry with the animal. The water will surely get its attention. Discipline your cat by making a certain schedule and sticking to it. Teach it the times when meals will arrive and where it will receive the food. It is vital that you use a number of strategies to communicate with your cat. Flash overhead lights to inform it of your presence. You can also stomp the floor as cats are susceptible to vibration.