Hairballs in Cats

 

Hairballs are a classic feline ailment.  Cats are meticulous groomers, and their tongues have tiny barbs that pull out loose hairs while grooming.  These barbs make it difficult for a cat to rid the tongue of the hairs, so the cat usually ends up swallowing them.  Usually, the swallowed hairs pass through the body and end up in the feces, but they can also accumulate in the stomach and form a mass of fur.  The technical term for this mass …

I want to start cooking for my dog and get him off commercial diets. Any advice?

Preparing a diet at home for your dog can be a rewarding task, but caution must be taken to do so correctly. Home-prepared diets tend to be highly digestible and can provide high-quality nutrition. However, home-prepared diets can be more expensive, can provide variable nutrition, and take considerable time and care to ensure they are adequate for your dog’s health.

 

Dogs are omnivores and require a diet that consists of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, and water in correct proportions. …

Is it O.K. to give my dog rawhides to chew?

Yes. There appear to be no negative effects of offering rawhide chews. Feeding rawhide chews is an effective method of maintaining dental health, specifically in preventing gingivitis. Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums due to bacterial plaque. Chewing rawhides helps keep plaque from forming by scraping teeth to clean them. Rawhides can also prevent or decrease the severity of periodontal disease (gum disease). Gum disease is seen over a long period of time as a buildup of plaque, tartar, …

I want to smoke beef bones and sell them to my customers for their dogs. Is this safe?

Cooked bones, including smoked, should not be fed to dogs. The bones can splinter from the cooking process which causes the bones to harden and become brittle; splintering bones can cause severe damage to a dog. Dogs can cut their mouths, pierce their stomach lining, and possibly block the intestines. 

 

Some raw bones can be fed because they will not splinter; however, some meat should be left on the bones to act as a cushion. The major bones of support …

Nuclear Sclerosis vs. Cataracts in Companion Animals

Nuclear sclerosis is a very common eye defect in older animals and is commonly mistaken for cataracts in companion animals. Nuclear sclerosis results in a cloudy appearance to the lens of the eye but is less harmful than cataracts because it does not greatly affect the vision of your pet. With no other outside contributor responsible, this disease appears as a normal part of the aging process and is often unavoidable. Nevertheless, if your pet’s eyes appear cloudy, it is …

Pet-friendly Shelters

“Pet-friendly” describes a human emergency shelter located in the same area or facility as an emergency shelter for pets. Typically, pet owners are allowed to care for their own animals.

Photo is complements of Andrea Booher/FEMA.

Pet-friendly shelters were created as a result of lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina. On October 6, 2006, President George W. Bush signed into law the Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act (PETS Act). According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), the …

4-H Companion Animal Photo and Video Contest

 

The Companion Animal Community of Practice is pleased to announce 4-H photo and video contest.

     

These contests provide a venue for 4-H members across the nation to express their love of companion animals and demonstrate their photography and video skills.  

Eligibility:

  • Contest is open to all 4-H and non-4-H youth ages 8-18 years of age as of January 1, 2014.
  • Must be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States.
  • All work must be created by the participant.
  • Entry

Companion Animal 4-H Video Contest


Official Guidelines         

This contest provides a venue for 4-H members across the nation to express their love of companion animals and demonstrate their filmmaking skills.  

Eligibility:

  • Contest is open to all 4-H and non-4-H youth ages 8-18 years of age as of January 1, 2014.
  • Must be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States.
  • All film entries must be original and created and produced by the filmmaker(s).
  • Entry must have been completed after October 1, 2013 and by

How much space does my bird need?

The amount of space should be large enough for the birds to fully stretch their wings, and allow for some flight, but also for your birds to hop, climb, feed, socialize, and exhibit other natural behaviors. Long-tailed species, such as parakeets, cockatiels, and macaws, will need housing that will accommodate their tails as they move around. If a cage is too small for these long-tailed species, the tails may become damaged. Adequate-sized housing is important not just for physical health, …

Sugar Gliders: A Summary of the Nature and Care of the Companion Sugar Glider

Sugar gliders are small tree-dwelling nocturnal marsupials, and, until very recently, have not been classified as a companion animal species. However, over the last decade, sugar gliders have been increasingly kept as pets largely in the United States, Canada, and Japan. Sugar gliders are valued as pets because of their cleanliness, attraction, and hardiness. Sugar gliders have a relatively low rate of health issues; however, this natural hardiness can be quickly degraded if these animals are kept in improper social, …