If your dog is feeling cooped up this winter, try taking him or her on outings with you during the week. Even a short trip to a dog friendly pet store or coffee shop can make their week more eventful. For dogs and cats, consider having a pet sitter drop by to exercise your pooch or play with your cat.
Exercise is the most common New Year’s resolution for humans and there is no reason why it can’t be for your pet too! Indoor games can keep your pet active while giving them some quality one on one time. For dogs, try some new toys like a rope to play tug with. Fetch is also a great game to play indoors with small stuffed animals. To increase the activity level try tossing the toy up stairs (make sure the stairs have carpeting or a runner to prevent slipping). If your dog likes to chase, try attaching a stuffed animal to the end of a rope. Even though going outside is difficult this time of year, indoor open areas work well too. For cats try to mix up their toys and introduce some feathery or fur-like toys on “fishing poles” that will encourage stalking, leaping and pouncing- especially right before mealtime when your cat is hungry. Interactive toys are enjoyed by both dogs and cats especially ones that dispense treats!
Dear Christopher Cat I live with my cat, Sophie, and three dogs. Sophie seems content as an indoor cat, but I think she needs contact with other cats. Will she welcome a new cat if I adopt one? Christopher Responds It may be hard to determine whether Sophie’s choice is to live as an only cat or have a feline friend. However, most families with a single cat eventually adopt at least one more, and the cats usually get along. Although I head our five-cat family, the dominant female usually is in charge. Therefore, I suggest you adopt a male cat. Within a few days of the adoption, take your new cat to the veterinarian to ensure that he is healthy. Give Sophie and the new cat time to get acquainted, by confining your new family member to a room of his own for about a week. He and Sophie will introduce themselves under the door, and he will grow accustomed to the household noises. When he seems confident enough to leave his room, open the door and let him explore the house. Don’t pick up either cat to introduce them, or you’ll get scratched as the cat you’re holding leaps from your arms. Feed treats or small amounts of canned food when the cats are at opposite ends of the kitchen but within eyesight of each other. Over the next few weeks, gradually decrease the distance between their bowls, and very soon, they will be friends.
Here are some tips to the make the trip easier for you and your cat: ◾Choose a cat carrier with a top that easily opens or lifts off. ◾Add a towel or blanket to prevent slippage and help your cat feel cozy. ◾Spray the towel — not your cat — with Feliway, a feline facial pheromone that calms cats and helps them feel secure. ◾Keep the carrier out in the open in a safe place so your cat can adjust to going in and out. Throw treats inside from time to time to give your cat a treat for going in. ◾Feed your cat inside the carrier. ◾When your cat looks comfortable, start taking him or her on a tour of the house. When that feels good, start with short trips in the car. ◾Make the trip as rewarding as possible. Offer treats and calming language. Keep the loud music and sharp turns to a minimum, especially during the first few trips. ◾When you make your trip to our hospital bring along a favorite toy and/or a blanket with familiar smells. ◾Most important: keep your cool! Cats can sense our emotions, if you’re calm, it will help them feel better, too.
Smokey was in last week for a routine procedure and just after waking up she began talking to us. Her quiet mewing gradually became louder until we realized she was hungry. Smokey devoured three small bowls of canned food before napping peacefully until her pickup time. I guess she was putting our five star service to the test. She reminded us of the saying, “As every cat owner knows, nobody owns a cat.” – Ellen Perry Berkeley
Fritz and Squirt came to Bernville by a few good samaritans who found them while hiking. They were very weak and sick when they came to us. Two weeks later we are happy to report that they are bouncy, happy and growing like weeds. These two handsome fellas are looking for their furever homes, they need a loving home with great people because they are partially blind from being so sick. Please call us at 610-488-0166 if you are interested in adopting these beautiful babies.
Vaccinations are a critical part of preventive care for your pet. Vaccines protect our pets from many diseases including rabies, distemper and Lyme disease (May is Lyme disease awareness month and we’ll have a full story about it tomorrow). Each dog and cat is different, so our veterinarians develop custom vaccinations plans for each pet. Our veterinarians will determine which vaccinations your pet needs and how often they will be administered. For more information about our vaccines, go to http://bernvillevet.com/wellness/vaccinations or call to schedule an appointment 610.488.0166
Trevor is a 5-year-old neutered male black DSH. He’s big and brassy! He’s also eligible for half off his adoption fee because I’ve been at the ARL for more than 3 months! You can’t see it from this photo but his face is shaped like a lion! For more information about Trevor and other pets for adoption, go to www.BerksARL.org
Did you know…
- Cats have 32 muscles that control the outer ear (compared to human’s 6 muscles each). A cat can rotate its ears independently 180 degrees, and can turn in the direction of sound 10 times faster than those of the best watchdog.
- Cats’ hearing is much more sensitive than humans and dogs. Cats’ hearing stops at 65 khz (kilohertz); humans’ hearing stops at 20 khz.