The followin’ post will be written in human English fur reader and translator ease. Our Service Cat posts aren’t intended to be an all inclusive Trainin’ Manual but rather Tips, Tricks and Techniques used/developed by mommy A thru her many years of animal trainin’, cats in purrticular. And to offur insight into your questions about Everything Feline. Always remember, Training is all ‘bout Repetition and Rewards.
MeOW Welcome to Service Cats and Everything Feline on Furidays. Every week we try to answer questions asked by all of you ‘bout Training, Health, Behavior or anything else you’re wonderin’ ‘bout the little ball of fluff residing in your homes. We also take on topics you’ve suggested and try to help humans better unnerstand the Feline and sometimes the woofies too. That’s right, a lot of the Tips we give can be used fur pets of all species. Ifin you have a question or blog topic you’d like to see, purrlease leave a comment in the comments section below or send us an email via our Contact page in our menu. And, ifin you’ve missed any of the posts in this series or just want to refresh your memory, you ketch up by clickin’ the links on our Training Tips and Everything Feline page in our menu above.
For the last 3 weeks we’ve focused on Kitten/Cat Proofing your home; and, we’ll be wrapping that up today with a few last Tips and Suggestions. If you’ve missed Pt. 1, 2, or 3 click on the corresponding numbers to read them now. We truly hope we’ve helped make bringing a new kitty or puppy into your home easier and less stressful. We would first like to add something brought to our attention by one of our very smart readers. Just when you thought you’d covered all possible dangers, someone mentions something you totally forgot about.
Last week we covered the Sewing and Craft room but totally forgot about the Iron. Yep, some people do still iron. Mommy uses a steamer more than an iron, so it just slipped our minds. However, a hot iron is a serious danger to pets and humans alike. And the dangly cord hanging over the edge of the ironing board is a great temptation for kitty/puppy. Never leave an iron unattended or plugged in when not in use. As me said, mommy prefers using a steamer not only on her clothes but also for cleaning. For water to turn into steam, the temperature reaches scalding hot. Never, blast kitty/woofy with steam, it will burn them.
Outside: The Predator Becomes the Prey:
As most of you know, we believe kitties belong inside and not out roaming around without their human. The dangers lurking outside are overwhelmingly huge. Kitties in particular are not only predators but also prey, especially small kittens and cats. Owls, Hawks, Eagles, Coyotes, Wolves, Bobcats, Cougars, Alligators, Crocodiles and many other wild animals can, will and do hunt our small furry friends.
Rabies, carried by a number of wild animals can be transmitted through bites during a fight or saliva from an infected animal entering an open wound of a healthy animal/human. Feral Cat Colonies are at high risk of harboring and spreading Rabies as well as other fatal and non fatal feline diseases. Cars are another danger outside cats face. Over *6 million cats and dogs were killed by cars in the U.S. alone last year. (* – browser search). Cats are at a higher risk than dogs. In the winter time, car engines often provide a tempting place for cats/kittens to get warm. Please, Always knock on the hood of your car before starting it up, especially in the colder months.
Outside cats are at risk of being poisoned, either by accident or on purpose. Many people think cats are a nuisance and put out poisons. Cats may also be poisoned by eating mice or other small animals that have been poisoned themselves. We personally lost a friend a few years ago who ate one such mouse. While poisoning from antifreeze is more common in dogs, it’s still a risk for cats. Please clean up any anti freeze you see standing around your car and store any containers in an area away from kitties/woofies.
Many plants and flowers are toxic to kitties; as are most of the sprays used to keep bugs off garden plants. If you allow kitty outside in your garden, try to use non-toxic bug sprays and plant only safe foliage. Perhaps you could even plant kitty their own little garden area with some ornamental grasses and cat nip/mint. When offered the choice between your poisonous plants and nip or grass, kitty will almost always choose the latter.
The Garage or Shed is another room that harbors dangers and even death for kitty/woofy. If you use your garage for your car, be sure to keep any oil, antifreeze, or other liquids that may leak, cleaned up. Also, store any containers of these items out of kitty’s reach. A locker or other enclosed shelf is a great place for storing dangerous items and tools. Put tools, especially those with sharp edges, away as well as any small nails, screws, zip ties, and other tempting play objects. Use plastic storage containers with lids instead of boxes. Not only are boxes tempting to kitty, but they’re also a fire hazard. Store bikes, skateboards, surf boards and other large equipment on racks or shelving.
Cat Toys and Furniture:
Now, let’s talk a bit about toys designed for our play. One would think that a toy or furniture item designed specifically for us would be perfectly safe, right? If only that were true. Most everybody knows we kitties love things that dangle from a string/cord. We love the string maybe more than the toy at the end. MOL However, most of those dangly toys are terribly dangerous. Me almost hung me’s self when me was just about 5 weeks old. Yep, that great little perch mommy sits in front of the door for us had a “mouse on a string” hanging down from the top ledge. Me would swat at it and pull at it and pull it up with me’s mouth. One day, me turned and turned and turned with it in me’s mouth till the elastic string had gotten wrapped around me’s tiny neck and pulled me off the perch. There me was dangling by the neck. Mommy was horrified and terrified and…obviously, she came to me’s rescue or me wouldn’t be here to tell you about it today. But, she did learn a lesson, Never leave dangly things, attached by string or elastic, to our toys or furniture.
Yep, mommy’ll be removin’ that dangly befur lettin’ us play
with this unattended.
Hanging isn’t the only danger. If swallowed, strings can wreak havoc in our intestines. Because of the barbs on a cat’s tongue, we can’t actually push things out of our mouths very well. The more we struggle to spit out the string, the further in our mouths it goes. That brings me to the next set of toys that pose a danger to us. A lot of those cute little mice furries have tiny beads for eyes. The plastic ones often have a plastic push bead for a nose. While they might make the mousey look more like a mousey, they’re terribly dangerous and are often removed within the first few minutes of play. Y, Some of us kitties go so far as to remove the fur altogether and begin to eat the plastic mousey. Me’s never really seen a real mousey, so how’s me supposed to know the difference in taste of a real mouse or a plastic one? Apparently tho’, the plastic mousey is far more dangerous than the real thing. Chewed up plastic has sharp edges that can tear or cut our intestines.
Do mouseys have eyes?
We highly recommend removing all dangle toys from cat furniture by cutting the string or elastic closest to the area of attachment. We recommend removing all glued on pieces like eyes, noses, tails, etc. from kitty/doggy toys. Some woofies are really hard on their toys. We recommend throwing out any plastic toys that appear chewed, before kitty/woofy can eat/swallow them. If a stuffed toy is ripped, throw out any stuffing before it can be consumed. Mommy says when giving kitty/doggy a new toy, it’s a good idea to watch how it’s played with before allowing unattended play. Wand toys are a favorite of most kitties. We love it when our human plays with us. However, when you can’t be around, put the wands away or out of our reach. Anything listed as “interactive” means it requires supervision to be safe.
Thankfully these eyes were painted on, so mousey got to keep his eyes.
He lost his ribbon right after this foto shoot tho’. Sometimes, mommy’s no fun at all.
We know we’ve presented a lot of information over the last few weeks, but believe it or not, we only hit the highlights. Our last thought about kitties and the outdoors is that kitty should never be outside alone. We highly recommend harness and leash training. Just remember when introducing a new kitty/woofy into your home for the first time, don’t assume because your last kitty/woofy knew better the new one will. If this is your first kitty or woofy, thank you for saving a life, now take the precautions to kitten/cat proof your home so that you can both enjoy a long and happy life together. Take a look around your house, yard, garage and general living area, if you think it might be dangerous, remove it or take steps to make it safe. Lastly, Train your new kitty/woofy with some basic manners and you’ll both be happier for it. You can read Training Tips for appropriate Scratching and other behavioral challenges by clicking the links on our Training Tips and Everything Feline page. And don’t forget to leave your questions in the comments section below or send us an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org or via our Contact page.
Wand toys are me’s favorites.
We’re joinin’ Comedy Plus fur Feline Furiday. What would you like to read about next here on Service Cat Furiday? Does your kitty do somethin’ or have a weird habit that you wonder ‘bout? We wanna hear from you, purrlease leave us a comment and we’ll see you next week fur another foray into the magical world of Feline Behavior.
Till the next time…………………………………………….Be Blest!!!
Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses
Deztinee and RaenaBelle
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Tags: #CatProofing, #CatswithBlogs, #KittenProofing, #RagdollCats, #ServiceCats, #TrainingTechniques, #TrainingTips, Animals, Cat Blogger, Cats, Dangers, Dangers Around the Home, Deztinee, Garage Dangers, Mouse Toys, Outside Dangers, Pet Blog, Pet Blogger, Playing, Playing Cat, Playing Cats, Poisoning, RaenaBelle, Wand Toys
Hey, is anypawdy out there? It’s me RaenaBelle. It’s so ugly and dark here today. We had some really loud thunder boomers last night. But I’s kept sis Dezi busy playin’ so she wouldn’t notice. Wasn’t dat nice of me?
Playin’? Is dat what you call jumpin’ on me from da top of da chair, da tree, da scratchin’ post, and anywhere else you could find to jump off of from?
Sure sissy, wasn’t it fun?
Uh…Did me’s hisses and growls sound like it was fun Raena?
Hisses? Growls? Hmmmmm I’s didn’t hear any of dat sissy. I’s just thought it was da thunder.
(Dezi shakes her head) Well Raena are you gonna get to your question?
Oh yeah, fanks fur remindin’ me sissy. As ya’ know, mines spa day is tomorrow. Mommy goes to see hers doctor today and then I’s goin’ fur a spay, whatever dat is, tomorrow. Mommy says this is completely routine and dat most all mines furiends have been thru it, but as always there are risks. So, I’s would fur sure purreciate your purrayers dat all goes well and I’s back to bein’ me in no time. Mommy will be stayin’ right by mines side da whole time, and she plans on takin’ fotos, ifin allowed. She used to volunteer with this clinic but doesn’t ‘member their pawlicies. She does ‘member a lot of da folks don’t want their fotos posted, so she might have to do a lot of blurrin’. Anyways, we’ll keep ya’ll posted. We won’t be ‘round a lot this weekend, cuz of these things, but mommy did purromise to try to post at least an update after da deed on facebook. We of course will be here fur our regular Blest Sunday to tell you all ‘bout it. Anypawdy not followin’ us on facebook and wantin’ too, you can click da blue “Like” button on our facebook feed on da left sidebar here.
Me will be purrin’ and purrayin’ fur ya’ sissy. You may be a pain’ in me’s behind, but you’re me’s pain, and me wants you back home soon.
Aaaaaaaaw Fank you sis Dezi.
Besides, it also means extra good treats. Anyways, we’ve gotta go so mommy can get ready fur hers ‘pointment. She could use some purrayers too. Da State mandated dat mommy and her doctor don’t know what’s bestest fur her and it’s been a really tough month fur mommy. So we’re purrayin’ somethin’ can be done to help her today. Anyways, we’re joinin’ Rascal and Rocco and their pawsum co-hosts fur da weekly Pet Parade. Check it out. We’re purrayin’ fur all our furiends, ‘specially those in da path of da storms. Stay safe and have a furtabulous weekend.
Till da next time…………………………………………Be Blest!!!
Dezi: Vibrant Blue
Raena: Navy Blue
Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses
Deztinee and RaenaBelle
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Well here we are with da final part of our mini series on Sterile Cystitis. In our furst post we talked ‘bout da pawssible causes. Our second post innerduced you to meez new food. We discussed da pawssibility dat Sterile Cystitis was partly caused by food, both dry and those containing too many carbohydrates which kitties systems can’t break down. Seems Veterinary medicine doesn’t actually know what causes Sterile Cystitis. But thru comparin’ da lives of those cats purrsentin’ with it they’ve made sum assumptions. Another of those is dat it be caused by stress.
Well anypawdy who knows kitties knows dat we can get purrlenty stressed purretty quick over nothin’. And as most cat peeps know a kitty offen shows their stress thru their urine habits. Anyways, stress can be caused by numerous things like funder boomers. Or maybe a change in our house hold. You know, did you move dat chair from da livin’ room? Or did you bring home a new kitty or doggy? A new baby, a move, a new man or woman in your life, new work schedule or just plain ole boredom can cause your cat stress among other things.
So mommy changed meez food and gave me a supplement dat we found at Wysong to help lower meez urine pH, and then we had to work on meez stress levels. Meow mommy dat’s a lot of stuff to do.
Well baby there’s nothing I wouldn’t do for you. And yes, we did start with getting you off the Blue Buffalo kibbles, but knowing you were in pain, hurt me too and I wanted to get your urine pH down as quickly as possible. When I started my research we ended up at the Wysong website but not because of their food. That was a bonus. Wysong makes 2 supplements for urine pH. Both are called Biotic pH. There’s one for acidifying the urine and 1 for alkalizing the urine. Since Dezi’s urine pH was around 8-9 we needed to get it back down to the normal range. Having a urine pH that high meant she was at risk for developing stones and blockages. Ideally I would like to have Dezi do fine without any additional supplements, but as with medicines and supplements, sometimes you give something to get over a problem and then reassess. Thankfully the supplement is a powder that was sprinkled over her food and readily accepted. She ate it like a kid eats candy. But how do we know if it’s working?
To determine if Dezi’s urine pH was returning to normal we needed to test it. That meant either going back to the vet and paying for another urinalysis or testing it myself. Thankfully many advancements have been made in urine testing for cats because Dezi is the cat that would refuse to pee if I were standing there holding a test strip under her while she used the litter box. I researched testers extensively as well as ways to collect the urine and finally settled on a litter additive. Simple Solution makes a product that specifically tests urine pH when mixed with any litter you currently use. Since Sterile Cystitis can be an ongoing issue, and we’ll need to keep an eye on Dezi’s urine pH, I bought a couple of bags to start.
I poured some Simple Solution crystals in the area where Dezi urinates and waited (they are now mixed in throughout the litter which will happen with the cats’ digging and does not affect the accuracy of the crystals or their ability to work). I didn’t have to wait long because the additive seemed to intrigue her. When she left the box, I was holding my breath. Dezi had been on the new food and supplement for a couple of days. I know you’re all thinking it was too soon and I was expecting a miracle. Maybe I was. I believe in miracles and so many people had been praying for her, so I checked the litter. Alright, it wasn’t perfect. It was a nice shade of lilac, not the color I wanted. But it had only been a couple of days, and at least it wasn’t deep purple which is where it would have been the day she was diagnosed. Another meal down, more fluids and the next time Dezi used the litter box the crystals didn’t change color at all. We were there. Her urine pH was finally normal again. My little girl was no longer in pain. Insert in your mind, a photo of mommy smiling from ear to ear with tears of joy streaming down my face.
The next step was and is to work on Dezi’s stress levels. To do that we’ve been taking some days off the computer to hang out together and play and go for strolls. Dezi loves to play and she really likes to go out and see people and things. Kitties that lay around and sleep all the time can be stressed. Altho’ cats do sleep more than most species, they need enrichment during their waking hours. Their ancestors had to hunt for their food, so a little playtime before a meal can be beneficial. And altho’ I don’t believe any cat should be outside unattended, there’s a benefit to fresh air and sunshine. So invest in a good harness and leash and take the time to train your cats to use it. I have always preferred those harnesses made more like clothing as opposed to the strappy ones. A cat feels more secure when wrapped and even tho’ they may not like the harness at first, they will grow accustom to it and even someday enjoy it. We also use a stroller for going out. I’ll tell you they are a great investment. A way to take kitty out while keeping them completely protected.
The last thing we added is a calming aid. Some of you know we’ve tried the Thundershirt, Feliway and Bach’s Flower Essences, as well as a few other brands of treats and drops to no avail. Dezi hates storms, the lawn crew, fireworks, and most other loud and obnoxious noises. I searched and read and even made calls looking for something that might work. I will say that we don’t know if any of the calming treats on the market actually work because Dezi won’t eat them. When it comes to treats, she only wants freeze dried meat and unfortunately nobody makes a calming freeze dried chicken breast treat.
Anyways, we found a spot on from a company across the pond on amazon called Beaphar. They make calming collars, pills, and a spot on that is supposed to work for a week, among other products. The only ingredient in this spot on is Valerian. It comes in a box of 3 tubes much like a flea treatment. Instead of applying between the shoulders, this is applied between the ears and becomes effective within an hour of application. We’ve had a few storms since we started using it, and Dezi did much better. She did finally hide, but not at the first sign or crack of thunder. And she came out when I called her. I didn’t expect a spot on to work miracles; and part of being calm during these stressful events is acclimation. If Dezi has something that can help keep her calm long enough she can become accustomed to them and eventually not hide at all.
So all in all I’m happy with the results. I don’t like the price, but is there anything we won’t do for our babies? Right now a box of 3 Beaphar Calming spot on is selling for $7.50 – $10.00. The first ones we bought were $14.00. So the price varies and is a bit high, but the product works. If you’re having trouble and the other calming products don’t work for you either, then you might want to give this a try. I would like to note that we purchased all of these products ourselves.
Fanks fur ‘splainin’ everything mommy. Me luvs da new food. And mommy wanted me to tell ya’ dat me dusn’t take da Biotic pH – anymore, but will again ifin me needs it. And da little green crystals in meez pawdee box awe kinda cool. As fur da spot on, meez not sure me likes havin’ an oily head fur a day, but hey, those storms don’t seem quite as bad anymore. And meez really luvvin’ da extra time weez spendin’ togevver. Me luvs you mommy, and fanks fur duin’ so much to make me well.
As we do every weekend, weez joinin’ Rascal and Rocco fur da Pet Parade. And stay tuned Monday cuz weez gunna be havin’ a give away.
Till da next time……………………………….Be Blest!!!
Dezi = Blue
Mommy = Black
Red = Links
Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses
Dezi and Lexi