It’s Feline Friday! Join the fun!

Reading Time: < 1 minute

We’re joining in on Feline Friday hosted by Comedy Plus.
Want to join too? It’s simple.
All you have to do is: Post a picture, drawing, cartoon or video of a cat (They may be silly or cute).

Here’s the video we posted:

Remember, adopt cats! More Forever Homes, more often!

Companies team up to offer mobile pet health app with veterinary bill financing options

Reading Time: < 1 minute

CareCredit, a promotional financing solution for pet care, and PetDesk, a provider of veterinary client communications software, have partnered to provide the first mobile pet health app with integrated financing options.

The PetDesk platform supports proactive planning through health reminders and appointment scheduling, and Two-Way Messaging and Video Chat extend access to care.

With CareCredit’s financing options integrated into the PetDesk app, pet parents can plan both their pet’s veterinary care and manage the cost. Pet parents can apply for the CareCredit credit card directly within the PetDesk app, which leverages patent pending technology by Synchrony called dApply. With nearly half of CareCredit credit applications originating online and via mobile, this new partnership allows customers to seamlessly apply for credit and receive a credit decision right away.

“As veterinary practices move toward a new normal, we believe there will be two major shifts in pet owner expectations,” said Taylor Cavanah, CEO, PetDesk. “Many will be financially impacted and looking to veterinarians for payment options to help them manage cost. Pet parents will also expect veterinary teams to continue delivering easy-to-use technology like health apps, telemedicine and touchless payment, which they rapidly adopted during COVID-19. Our partnership with CareCredit will help meet these demands to deliver a frictionless client experience on every level.”

For more information about the PetDesk app with integrated CareCredit features, visit PetDesk.com.

Source:

SOURCE PetDesk

https://petdesk.com



Related:

How to save on care for an aging pet

Can music soothe the vet-wary kitty? A new study says yes!

Help with vet bills is available for those struggling!

Thankful Thursday blog hop

Reading Time: < 1 minute

This is only our second blog hop, and yet we have already met so many great people and animals! Today’s blog hop is the Thankful Thursday blog hop started by https://brianshomeblog.com

You can get the code to enter by clicking here and also post the things for which we are most thankful on your blog and/or the comments section on https://brianshomeblog.com/2020/07/thankful-thursday-blog-hop-green-benching-in-the-summertime.html

Today, we’re thankful for family — those human or scaly or furry or feathered — members who bring so much joy, unconditional love and purpose into our lives. We’ve posted a picture of some of our chickens in the blog hop pics because they are amazing and fascinating and we love to watch them just being chickens. They also seem to know the true meaning of family. When they come out to free range, they pretty much stay together, with the rooster keeping a watchful eye over the hens. When they go back into their pen at dark, they will not rest until all chickens are present and accounted for.

 

Are you a cat whisperer? Researchers create quizzes that help you find out

Reading Time: 3 minutes
cat next to stuffed animal cats

What is this cat thinking? Cat expressions can be hard to decipher, but if you’re good at it, you might be part of a small group of “cat whisperers.”

Are you good at telling what mood your cat is in? Or do you find yourself perplexed when trying to figure out what your fluffy friend is thinking?

Research from the University of Guelph has found that some people are skilled “cat whisperers” who excel at deciphering subtle differences in the faces of cats and their moods.

The large study found that women and those with veterinary experience (veterinarians or vet technicians), were particularly good at recognizing the expressions of cats. Younger adults also generally scored better than older adults. The findings that some people are outstanding at reading these subtle clues suggests it’s a skill more people can be trained to do.

The study and the human/cat bond:

“The ability to read animals’ facial expressions is critical to welfare assessment,” said Prof. Lee Niel, who led the study with Prof. Georgia Mason, both from University of Guelph’s Campbell Centre for the Study of Animal Welfare. “This is important to be able to do because it could help strengthen the bond between owners and cats, and so improve cat care and welfare.”

Using cat videos to test human skills:

The study looked at the assessment of a wide range of emotional states in animals, according to Mason.

Published in the November 2019 issue of Animal Welfare, the study recruited more than 6,300 people from 85 countries who were asked to watch 20 short online videos of cats from a collection of 40 videos, mostly from YouTube, and then complete online questionnaires.

The videos showed cats experiencing either positive emotional states (situations the cats had sought out, such as being petted or given treats), or in negative states (such as experiencing health problems or being in situations that made them retreat or flee). Each video was focused on a cat’s face—its eyes, muzzle and mouth.

None of the cats showed expressions of fear, such as bared fangs or flattened ears, since these facial expressions are already widely understood.

Participants were asked to judge whether each cat was in a positive state, a negative one, or if they weren’t sure.

Most participants found the test challenging. The average score was 12 out of 20—somewhat above chance.

However, 13 percent of the participants performed very well, correctly scoring 15 or better—a group the researchers informally called “the cat whisperers.”

“The fact that women generally scored better than men is consistent with previous research that has shown that women appear to be better at decoding non-verbal displays of emotion, both in humans and dogs,” said Mason, who worked on the study along with post-doctoral researchers Jenna Cheal and Lauren Dawson.

Surprisingly, being a cat lover made no difference at all, since reporting a strong attachment to cats did not necessarily result in a higher score.

So, are you a cat whisperer?

The research team has created a website with details for testing your own cat-reading abilities. You can take their interactive quiz at this link: https://catdogwelfare.wixsite.com/catfaces/cat-faces-interactive-quiz

Note about my experience taking the quizzes at this site: I have had cats in my life since I was a kid, and I like to consider myself pretty good at reading the emotions of animals, so I was very interested to try out the quizzes. took the first quiz at their site (link in the paragraph above) and got a 100 out of 100. The quiz took about three minutes and involved identifying whether a cat was experiencing positive or negative emotions in very short clips being shown followed by an explanation of the answer. After that, I had the chance to move on to the more advanced quiz, which I did since I was feeling pretty darn confident in my cat-reading skills—some might even say I was a bit cocky. Then, I suddenly had the feeling of crashing and burning as I quickly got the first four in a row wrong on the second quiz, including misidentifying what looked to me to be a very happy cat (the cat was actually about to vomit up semi-digested food). I ended up with a 37.5 out of 100, which killed my high from the first quiz until I read that most people taking this quiz score correctly only 51% of the time. I will say, it was definitely an eye-opening experience and I certainly plan to keep a closer eye on my kitties’ expressions from now on, as, hopefully, I will learn a thing or two.

 

Sources: https://news.uoguelph.ca/2019/12/cats-faces-hard-to-read-except-for-cat-whisperers-u-of-g-research-finds/

https://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/ufaw/aw/2019/00000028/00000004/art00012;jsessionid=4vmlaugvifgm.x-ic-live-02


Related:

Research shows watching cat videos might be good for you

How much do you really know about cats? Even if you have been a cat owner your whole life, our quiz, which covers some little known cat facts, may surprise you!


Wow, our cats really DO love us! A review of ‘You Know Your Cat Loves You Because…’

Reading Time: 3 minutes

I recently got a copy of “You Know Your Cat Loves You Because…The Sweet, Silly, and Scientific Ways our Cats Show Us How Much They Love Us.”book cover

The premise of the book is that, in spite of some scientists claiming that cats simply befriend us because it helps them get food and shelter, cats really do love us as shown in 49 illustrated pages.

The book is written by Jeff Parks, a freelance writer and editor, and Nina Brissey, who acts, directs, writes, and more. Not surprisingly, the book is dedicated to their cats, whom they credit with inspiring the project.

Interestingly, Parks didn’t become a cat person until he was in his 30s, according to Community Cats Podcast. According to the same source, at the same time, he became intrigued by the ways cats show their affection:

“Finding mostly scientific answers, he began using his comedy background to come up with funny ways cats show their love that wouldn’t be found in any official studies. Soon, he decided to pursue the idea as an illustrated book and began working with a co-writer and illustrator,” states the site, which also notes that Parks wanted to look beyond the typical stereotypes of cats being aloof when writing the book.

I was hooked after the very first reason, which is shown below, and made me laugh out loud since I have had cats all my life and pretty much none of them have ever been able to handle the idea of a closed door, no matter what the reason:

illustration from "You kow your cat loves you because..."Here’s another one of my favorite reasons, with which I can also strongly identify, having picked my fair share of shredded toilet paper up off the bathroom floor.

cat clawing toilet paper illustration

As you can see, the illustrations, depicting humorous ways cats show their affection for humans, are full of clever details from Mark Sean Wilson, an award winning contributor to The New Yorker.

There are also many more cat behaviors and situations described in the book that cat lovers can identify with, including the difficulty of giving oral medication and showing up for work in clothes covered in cat fur. As I read through the first 10 or so pages, I thought of about six people I could give a copy of the book to as a gift because I knew they could also totally relate to what I was reading. And the cost is under $10, ($2.99 for the kindle version), so it’s definitely going on my list of gifts for birthdays and holidays.

Finally, true to Parks’ goal of looking beyond the aloofness stereotype, there are plenty of touching reminders of how special the relationship between the feline and human can truly be.

For an interview with Parks at Community Cats Podcast, click here: https://www.communitycatspodcast.com/episode-337-jeff-parks/

For more about the book, you can visit: https://www.facebook.com/You-Know-Your-Cat-Loves-You-Because-448559955735845/


Related:

Eight great cat quotes

Choosing a name for your cat

Pet museums for the dog and cat lover

Five products for the ‘diva’ cat in your life

Five fascinating facts about black and white cats, including one about a cat who changed colors!

t shirt ad

Purina launches allergen-reducing cat food

Reading Time: 2 minutes

As many as one in five adults worldwide are sensitive to cat allergens. But, for many, that doesn’t mean foregoing the joy of cat ownership, although it might mean a some sneezing, watery eyes or other allergy-related symptoms.

Those owners with sensitivity might be relieved to find that Nestlé Purina has developed Purina Pro Plan LiveClear, the first and only cat food that reduces the allergens in cat hair and dander, according to a the company.

The food is “a 100% complete, nutritious and balanced dry cat food that has been shown to significantly reduce the allergens in cat hair and dander in as little as three weeks when fed daily,” says the company.

The product stems from more than a decade of research, and it is now available in the U.S. at Chewy, PetSmart, Petco, Pet Supplies Plus and other pet specialty retailers in three formulas – Adult Chicken & Rice, Adult Salmon & Rice, and Adult Sensitive Skin & Stomach Turkey & Oat Meal.

Additionally, Purina Pro Plan LiveClear recently earned the prestigious Good Housekeeping Seal, a trusted and highly regarded emblem for millions of consumers. The emblem signifies the product has been evaluated and approved for Seal use by the scientists and engineers at the Good Housekeeping Institute.

So how does it work?

“Many people think that cat hair is the root of their problem,” explained Ebenezer Satyaraj, Ph. D, immunologist for Nestlé Purina Research and lead investigator for the research, “but it’s actually what’s on it – the major cat allergen called Fel d 1, a protein that cats produce naturally in their saliva.”

Fel d1 is an allergen produced by all cats, primarily in their salivary and sebaceous glands. It is transferred to a cat’s hair and skin during grooming, then dispersed in the environment via hair and dried skin flakes.

The key ingredient in Pro Plan LiveClear is a specific protein sourced from eggs. When cats eat LiveClear, the protein binds to the Fel d 1 and safely neutralizes it in the cat’s mouth. Reducing active Fel d 1 in the cat’s saliva reduces the allergen that is transferred to the cat’s hair and dander when they groom, ultimately reducing the allergen in the environment without impacting the cat.

For more information on Purina Pro Plan LiveClear, visit www.proplanliveclear.com or follow @ProPlanCat on Twitter and Instagram or @PurinaProPlanCat on Facebook.

Source: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/purina-pro-plan-announces-the-first-and-only-allergen-reducing-cat-food-301011425.html

t shirt ad



Related:

Are you a cat whisperer? Researchers create quizzes that help you find out

Not sure how much to feed your dog or cat? Here are three helpful resources to help answer your questions

Cat DNA testing promises breed info and health insights

Five pool safety tips for pets

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Swimming with dogHAUPPAUGE, New York (PRNewswire) — As temperatures rise, the LOOP-LOC family, a removable pool fence supplier, is sharing five pool safety tips to help keep your pets safe:

1. Invest in a pet-friendly ladder.

For the dual pool and pet owners out there, provide pets with an easy exit strategy.

While pets may seem eager to join in on the water fun, they’ll eventually need to take a break and clawing at the edge of the pool may cause more accidents. It is extremely important to train your water-loving pet to use pet-friendly exits (such as a staircase) to avoid dreaded water-related accidents.

 

2. Swim gear isn’t only for humans.

Pets, like people, may need assistance in the swimming department. For pets with shorter legs or resistance to water, a life vest may be the pawfect solution for them. Putting your furry companion in a life vest during pool sessions will ensure their safety and may even limit accidents. What’s more, the pictures you’ll capture will brighten the gloomiest winter day.


3. Don’t drink the water.

While it may seem like a good idea to unsuspecting animals, pool water is not drinking water. Be sure to keep a close eye on your pets and keep their water dish close by. That way they can stay hydrated the right way and avoid the bacteria that comes with drinking chemically altered water.

4. Consult with a veterinarian before swimming together.

The safety of pets is the number one priority. Be sure to keep to consult with their veterinarian before they begin swimming. This is especially true for overweight and elderly pets. It may be best to consult with the veterinarian before making any changes to your pet’s lifestyle as a precaution.

5. Put a fence around your pool.

Fences are great for keeping animals out of places they aren’t allowed to be.

A removable fence from LOOP-LOC may be just what you need to keep your pet away from the pool when there is no supervision. Much like children, pets like to explore their surroundings and don’t always know when to stay away from an unsafe area.

Luckily a BABY-LOC fence does the work for you. Keep your pet safe by only allowing them near the pool when you are able to watch them.

ABOUT LOOP-LOC: LOOP-LOC safety pool fence supplier is a global leader in the pool industry with a 200,000-square-foot headquarters in Hauppauge, New York, and 300 employees.

Through its network of dealers, the company has sold safety swimming pool covers on every continent on Earth except Antarctica. LOOP-LOC now also manufactures a line of luxury in-ground pool liners—with more exclusive designer patterns than any other company—as well as the BABY-LOC removable fencing, a convenient, cost-effective additional layer of protection to help deter toddlers from gaining access to a swimming pool.


Related:

Summer brings special considerations for care of pets: PetSmart offers some tips to keep tips healthy when indulging in summer fun

Summer brings special considerations for care of pets

Reading Time: 3 minutes

PHOENIX (PetSmart Press Release)—The dog days of summer are the perfect time to indulge pets in some outdoor fun.

Too much time in the heat, sun or water, however, can pose health and safety risks for pets.

PetSmart offers some easy suggestions to help make this a safe and memory-filled season for pet parents and their pets.

Know when to consult a veterinarian:

“Dog owners should call their veterinarian immediately if during or after outdoor activities they notice excessive panting, sluggish or unresponsive behavior, vomiting or bloody diarrhea, or bright red or pale, dry gums as these are all signs of overheating and possible heatstroke,” said Jennifer Freeman, DVM, PetSmart’s resident veterinarian and pet care expert.

Stay indoors when the temperature is high:

Staying indoors during particularly hot days is often the best option.

If your dog must be outdoors, ensure they have plenty of shade, ample fresh water and a kiddie pool filled with fresh water for cooling dips.


A special elevated bed that gives dogs a ventilated place to rest like the Top Paw Indoor/Outdoor Elevated Pet Bed is also a good option.

Provide protection from hot pavement:

To protect sensitive paws from burning pavement, take dogs for walks on grassy areas and during the early morning or late night hours. A range of reflective accessories like leashes and harnesses and booties can help boost their visibility when the sun isn’t shining.

Life jackets aren’t just for humans:

Summertime pet fun also means trips to the beach, pool, lake or favorite swimming spot. Pet parents should also pay careful attention to ensure pets are safe during water playtime, especially around yards and pools that aren’t gated. A snug-fitting life jacket is a helpful addition when pets are taking a dip.

“Dogs may seem like natural born swimmers, but the truth is they need training just like people,” Freeman said. “I also always recommend having a gated pool when there are new puppies or geriatric or blind dogs in the home as they can fall in the pool and not be able to get out.”

Take extra caution at natural bodies of water like oceans, rivers or lakes so pets don’t drink potentially contaminated water. Bring along a portable water bowl and fresh water.

Collar and ID:

Dogs are especially prone to escaping during the summer months due to fireworks and storm anxiety.

A leash is always a good idea out of the water, along with a collar and proper identification.

“It’s important to make sure your pet is microchipped and that it is registered with up-to-date contact information,” said Freeman.

Provide flea, tick and worm prevention:

With rising summer temperatures, pet parents should also take precautions to keep heartworms, fleas and ticks at bay.

“Monthly flea and tick preventatives are highly recommended and can prevent the spread of disease,” said Freeman. “It’s also important to have your pets on heartworm preventatives as that is a disease transmitted by mosquitos, which are more active during the hot summer months.”

Be sure to keep the grass on your property cut short as ticks like to hide in tall grass and other wooded areas and check pets regularly when they return from being outdoors.

For more ways to keep your pets cool, happy and safe during the hot summer months, visit www.petsmart.com.


Related:

Not sure how much to feed your dog or cat? Here are three helpful resources to help answer your questions

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Want to make sure your pet stays at a healthy weight?

Or, is your furball plumping up a bit and you’re not sure what to do about his or her diet?

According to a press release from Nationwide, excessive body fat in pets increases the risk of preventable health issues and may shorten the life expectancy of dogs and cats. According to the same release, top obesity-related conditions in cats include bladder/urinary tract disease, kidney disease and diabetes, while the top related conditions for dogs are arthritis, bladder/urinary tract disease and liver disease.

Figuring out how to feed your four-legged family member(s) may seem confusing at first (especially if kitty or doggy swear they’re hungry for a treat or table scraps 10 minutes after finishing a bowl of food). Fortunately, there are some helpful guides that can make it much easier. Here are three great resources to help with diet decisions that should keep your pet healthy and happy.

dog rolling on back

1) Your Dog Advisor has released a comprehensive guide on how often to feed your dog or puppy, including how to develop a feeding schedule and why free feeding might not be the best route. You can find it at: https://yourdogadvisor.com/how-often-to-feed-dog/

2) The Pet Nutrition Alliance website, which is American Veterinary Medical Association recommended, has both dog and cat Calorie Calculators that will tell you how much to feed your dog or cat through calculators after you type in some quick information, including your pet’s weight.

Top Cat

Some cats will be pretty clear when signalling that they’re ready to eat. But how much should you feed them? Our list of resources can help.

 

3) 1-800-PetMeds has a list of frequently asked questions about feeding dogs and cats at this link: https://www.1800petmeds.com/education/feeding-dog-cat-33.html.

In addition, the site also has a section on pets and how to help them safely lose weight: https://www.1800petmeds.com/education/feeding-dog-cat-33.html