All Around the World

 

May has been a super busy month around here. I’ve traveled to the other side of the country, and hit several different countries as well. Traveling always reminds me how small the world really is, and how similar people are. We all want the same things, happiness, comfort, and peace. We all love our families (and pets!)

I was away from my pets quite a bit in May. Thankfully I have great pet sitters for everyone, so even though I get very nervous leaving them, they are all happy and content. Everyone needs extra attention now that we are back home, especially the cats!

Hector gave me a scare this trip. I got a text from my sitter that she had tried to fly and landed badly. She was favoring one foot, and the sitter wasn’t sure what to do. I told him to leave her in her cage and keep an eye on her. I’d seen this happen before and she was fine after a short time and thankfully the same thing happened this time, but I was very happy to get home a couple of days later to check on her.  

Cali loves to play dress up!

Going through my full mailbox when I got home, I found an email about a free 30 day perfect pet class. It’s by Zak George, a trainer I had watched before. I dug into it a little bit and it does seem to be totally free. It is affiliated with Pupford so there is some advertising to wade through, but it hasn’t been bad so far. Cali is 9 years old, definitely to a puppy, but she does have some annoying habits. I thought it might be fun to give it a try and share my results here. My goals would be simply to get Cali listening better. For example, she knows to come when call, but sometimes just ignores me, not a safe habit. She also barks, a lot, and if I could lessen that, it would make her a much nicer resident. If nothing else, a month of training will be a good refresher for both of us.

 

Sh*t Show – or My Pooper Scooper Review!

 

 

No one enjoys dealing with poop. It’s just part of life, and dog owners know it’s just something you have to deal with.

I’ve tried to teach Cali to poop in the woods, but apparently that’s just for bears, and she’s not into it. She likes a nice patch of grass, usually right in a path where we want to walk around in our yard.

So I scoop the poop, because poop happens.  I’ve been using a connected scooper thing that I guess I should have taken a picture of, because I’m not finding pictures online. My old one was pretty beat up and dirty so I thought I’d spare everyone the pictures. It was just two wooden handles attached to a rake and a flat scoop. You separate the handles, use the rake to push the poop unto the flat part, then you can hold it closed with one hand and bring it to wherever you need to dump it.

I just bought this scooper set  to try something a little different. I thought having two pieces might be a nice change, and I really like it. Instead of fighting to make sure the pieces line up properly to scoop like I used to have to do with the old one, now I just put down the little scoop part and use the rake to push the poop into the scoop and carry it off to be dumped.

Cali is little, so she doesn’t make giant poops. I’m not sure this little set would work all that well for a Great Dane, but for a little Morkie it works great. I can even pick up a couple of piles at once with it.

The surface is non-stick or lovely slick coating that rinses clean very easily. The rake part clips to the scoop part so they are easy to store together. Another bonus is that the scoop part has a flat bottom, so it sits nicely near the wall.

The unit went together easily. Each part was well marked and they just screw together. I saw some reviews that people said the parts kept coming unscrewed, but I’ve used mine about a dozen times now, and haven’t had any problems.

I can’t say that this new scooper has made me enjoy cleaning up the yard, but on a nice Spring day when the sun is out, it definitely isn’t the worst chore.

Doggy Stick Review and Hector Story!

Captain Hector

It’s always amazing to me to find connections to Hector D. Byrd’s past. Last week I received a message on Facebook from someone who had been a Hector fan back in her Ambrosia Software days. He was such a fan that he named the family’s cat after Hector! After reading an article that reminded him about Hector, he googled and found the Petmomma.co Facebook page and was happy to see that Hector is still thriving. I feel so lucky to have this girl in my life and it is always special to hear from others who have been impacted by Hector in the past! Any other Ambrosia software fans out there?

   

Cali girl has been lucky enough to test out Doggy Sticks recently, and we’ve both been super happy with the results.

We have two Doggie Sticks, Moisturizer and Prevent Itchiness.

Cali has skin allergies and is often itchy. We’ve been using Cytopoint injections recently with good results, but she still has itchy paws, especially in winter. I’ve been using the stick on her paws whenever I see her chewing on them, and she instantly stops. The stick is super easy to apply, just pull off the top and twist up the stick. I hold her paw in my hand and rub the stick on her paws, easy as that. I use my hands to rub it in a little, but I haven’t noticed any issues with the product getting on floors or carpets, it sinks right into her skin. I really like that the stick doesn’t have any strong odors.

 
According to the company, the formulas are handmade each day.  Ingredients are natural: “The original moisturizer is made with organic, sweet almond oil and bamboo. The itch-free formula is made with coconut oil and a specialized bamboo mix for anti-itch that also recovers the skin.”
 
The key seems to be the bamboo used in both formulas, the company says it is a great natural anti-fungal solution. Original formula treats dry skin with bamboo as well as Vitamins E and A.  The Anti-Itch formula also uses Coconut oil.
 
With its all natural ingredients, Doggy Sticks can be used as needed. For Cali, I sometimes used it morning and night when her itchiness was really bad, but other times I didn’t need to use it every day.
 
I know with road salt I end up washing Cali’s paws quite a bit in winter, and I’m excited to have the Moisturizer Doggy Stick to help combat winter dryness and cracking. I’m guessing it will also be handy to keep her paws dry and comfortable in summer. The Anti Itch stick will be something I always keep on hand for her. It’s so nice to be able to give her some relief when she is chewing at her paws.
 
You can find Doggy Sticks at Doggy Stick.com . The regular formula is currently selling for $5.99 and the Itchiness formula for $8.99.
 
 

Kitties and Cali

#With the colder weather, Logan and Puck have been snuggling more. Usually, Puck finds himself a cozy spot, and Logan works her way in. Bean is a solo guy, I don’t really find him snuggling with the other cats or Cali.

Puck was happily enjoying his cozy spot until Logan moved in.

Eventually, he figured out that she wasn’t leaving, and he went back to napping.

My new Sundays food for Cali shipped, so I’m still waiting on that. Looking forward to seeing how she likes it and sharing my thoughts on it. They have been sending me emails, and I’m intrigued about it being a dehydrated food, and having a “jerky-like” texture. I think Cali might really enjoy that.  We’ll see!

 

Pets and wildlife

Cali isn’t much of a hunter!

Saw a Facebook post this weekend about a woman who was concerned her dog kept chasing and killing wildlife, chipmunks, bunnies, etc. Some people suggested muzzles. leashing, fencing, etc. I suggested a simple bell.  It gives the wildlife a bit of a warning so they have a fair chance to get away. I always encourage people with outdoor cats to make sure they have bells on their collars as well. Why not give the chipmunks a chance? 

If you are going to put a collar on your cat, indoor or outdoor, I highly recommend a break-a-way collar. I had a cat get stuck once, and it was scary. Thankfully, I was there to fix the problem right away.  My indoor cats don’t wear collars anymore. They are microchipped, so on the off chance they were to escape, they have that for ID, but my cats are all pretty afraid of the great outdoors, and we are careful to keep an eye on our doors.

Cali got a haircut this weekend, well I cut her hair. I love how she looks when her hair is longer, but with her itchy skin, it just isn’t good for her. Clipping her short allows me to keep a close eye on her skin, and also makes it easier for her weekly baths. I find oatmeal shampoo baths really help with her itchiness. I’ll see how the winter goes. I like letting her hair get a bit longer when it gets cold.

Welcome to Fall

Puck, popping out to say hello

 

First of all, I miss this blog! Not sure why I’ have gotten out of the writing habit, but hoping to get back to it regularly!

I just heard about a new dehydrated dog food called Sundays Food. Looks like a premium food, no fillers. I got a discount code to try it out, so I’ll check it out and post a review. Cali is doing pretty well with her Cytopoint injections, but maybe a healthier food option will also help. Let me know if you’ve tried it.

Not exactly pet related, but sort of… I got a new tattoo. I had a vision of some kind of tattoo that could incorporate a bunch of my present and former pets. I had the idea of a footprint path, and my amazing tattoo artist, Benjamin Jeness at Summer’s End Studios,  helped bring my idea to life.

From my ankle heading down, there are parrot claws, 4 sugar glider feet, then two each of rabbit, turtle, lizard, rat, chinchilla, ferret, cat, and dog. We simply had to include 4 glider feet since their fronts and backs are so different. I love the way it came out! I really wanted a horseshoe or two in there, but it just didn’t work out design-wise.  Maybe I’ll find a way to add one another time. They are good luck!

This handsome boy is Marty. While I consider him part of our family, he is not my kitten, he is my son’s. He is living at college and loving life. Marty is keeping my son company, helping to relieve college stress, and even providing lessons on responsibility. Marty will join our crew when my son is home on breaks.  Looking forward to getting to know him better.

Marty loves to go for walks on his leash, and loves meeting new people. He expects everyone he meets to pat him!

In general all the pet-family is doing well. I’ll post more detailed updates soon, and of course a review of that Sundays Food when Cali gets a chance to test it.

 

 

 

A Few Updates

A couple of quick updates here:


The dragon is doing great. She seems to love her new terrarium set up and is making it her job to try and eat all the insects that are supposed to be keeping her tank clean. I’m guessing I’m going to be needing to add more bugs before they have a chance to reproduce! I did add some mealworms to the tank. We’ll see how they survive. It’s awesome to see how active she is nibbling plants, checking things out, digging, climbing, etc.  I’m really happy for her.

Cali is not happy about her increased walk schedule and decreased treats, but she’s doing well.  The lump is definitely just fat, so not a problem, just something to keep an eye on. She is slowly getting weaned off of Apoquel and doing well so far. I plan to take her in for another shot of Cytopoint at the end of the month, and we’ll see how it goes from there.  Cali also had a bath and haircut last week, I miss her fuzz, but she seems happier to have some of that thick mess gone.

Hector is Hector. She is doing great. I was worried about her getting cold a couple of weeks ago when the house felt a little colder than normal. She usually hates having a cover on her cage, but with the cold, I wanted to insulate her a bit. She’s getting used to having her blankie on each night, and actually seems to like it.  I just put a small fleece over the top 1/4 of her cage. It gives her some insulation, but doesn’t block her view.  So far so good!

The kitties are all doing well.  Logan’s blood work all came back within normal ranges, so she is scheduled to have her teeth cleaned and the broken tooth removed on Thursday. Bean is very excited about all the outside animal activity as the weather is warming up a little.  He’s found a new spot to hang out and hunt.

The gliders are also doing well.  I was getting a little bit worried about my little guy, Miney. He has been smaller than the others since I got them, but I started to worry that he might be losing a bit of weight. I reached out to a glider expert through a FaceBook group to get some advice. She recommended “Glider Crack” which is a high protein temporary diet to help add weight to a sick or needy glider. The problem is that my other three boys definitely don’t need extra food! 

It has been a bit tricky getting him out alone, but I’ve been able to do it for the last few nights. I wait until it is close to the time I think they will wake up, about 9pm usually, and I disturb the pouch where they all sleep. I offer treats to the three other boys to encourage them to leave the pouch, and I make sure their food is all set up for them. Once I get the three big boys out of the way, I remove the pouch with Miney in it from the cage. I’ve been hand feeding him the special Glider Crack, and he loves it!

In case you were wondering what kind of deliciousness is in Glider Crack, it is canned chicken, avocado, scrambled egg, calcium supplement, and water, all blended together into a lovely green slime.

Miney seems to be doing well. Other than being a little thin, he seems totally fine and healthy. I’ve added more food bowls and separated things out more in the cage, so hopefully if he is getting chased from food, he will have a better chance to get at it now. I’ve hand fed him for the last 4 or 5 nights, so I plan to take a night off. I don’t want him to become totally dependent on hand feeding. I’ll offer him more Glider Crack tomorrow night, and obviously I’m keeping an eye on him.

I’m ready for Spring! How about everyone else?

 

 

Vet Update

 

Two updates in one day! Last month the three cats went in for their annual check ups and I found out Logan had a bad tooth. I should have just scheduled removal at the time, but the vet said to keep an eye on it.

Last week, I found Logan drooling. I called another vet figuring I’d get a second opinion on what was going on. I didn’t want to put her under anesthesia until I was certain that the removal was the right thing.

She had the tooth checked today, and it definitely needs to come out. The vet thinks the drooling was from something getting caught in her gum and irritating it near the bad tooth. We did a blood test today to make sure there isn’t anything going on that we should know about before we do the cleaning next week.

 

Cali needs a diet and a haircut!

We also found a lump on Cali’s side last week, so she also went in for a check up today. Thankfully, they are 90% sure that it is just a fatty deposit. They took a quick sample of it to be sure, but it doesn’t seem like anything to worry about.

Time to try something new for Cali’s allergies. She’s been taking Apoquel for years, and sometimes it seems to help more than others. We are going to slowly wean her off the Apoquel and see how she does with just Cytopoint injections. She had one today, she’ll have another in 30 days, and then we will see how she does. I’m excited to have her off Apoquel. I hope the new plan works.

Seems that Cali has also put on a few pounds. She weighed over 15 lbs today! She’s usually about 11. Time for more exercise and a doggie diet! That’s fine. Just thankful that the lump doesn’t seem to be a problem.

Product Warning – DreamBone

Happy New Year!

I saw this product all over Amazon before the holidays. Sounded good to me, no rawhide, made with chicken. I should have known better. It’s made in China, and for some reason so many pet treats that come out of China seem to lead to problems.

Over the weekend, a friend of a friend shared a story of their 8 month old puppy who had these treats and ended up needing surgery because they blocked the puppy’s intestinal tract. I searched around online and found many similar stories. This is NOT a safe product.

Cali has had a couple of these, and they didn’t seem to cause her any problems, but I just don’t see a reason to take chances. This bag is headed for my trashcan.

Just a reminder to be careful what you buy for your pets.