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Fevereiro de 2017

Devo microchip meu animal de estimação?

 Por lucy em 23 Fev 2017 |
2 Comentário (s)
The American Humane Association estimates that more than 10 million cats and dogs are lost or stolen in the United States each year. Collars and tags can help reunite lost pets with their families, but even tagged animals can slip their collars or have tags too worn to read. More and more owners are turning to microchipping, then, to help locate lost pets.   A microchip is a small, glass cylinder injected just below a pet’s skin, often between the shoulder blades. The procedure takes just seconds and equips your four-legged friend with a chip the size of a grain of rice. Each chip holds a radio transmitter and tiny electronic device, which contain an animal’s unique ID number. When a lost pet is taken into a shelter, a scan reveals this chip, which allows workers to identify the animal and use a database to contact his owners.  At an average cost of just $45 from your local veterinarian, a microchip is an investment that will last your pet’s lifetime and greatly increases your chances of being reunited with a lost pet. A study of 53 animal shelters by the American Veterinary Medical Association found that only 22 percent of dogs entering the shelters were reunited with their owners— a number that jumped to 52 percent for microchipped dogs. Less than 2 percent of cats entering the shelters were reunited with their owners, but that number increased to more than 38 percent for microchipped felines.   Though microchipping saves many animals’ lives each year, there are a few risks associated with the chips. In very rare cases, veterinarians have inserted the chip in the wrong place or the chip migrated after it was implanted. While this is generally harmless, a few instances have caused infections or abscesses. There have also been rare cases where tumors developed near microchips, though it is unclear whether they were caused by the chips or not. Given the millions of animals that have had microchips inserted without incidence, the risk is extremely low. However, owners should weigh these risks against what could happen—including not being able to find their pets and potential euthanization in shelters—when deciding whether or not to microchip their pets.   While a microchip will last your pet’s lifetime, a chip is only as good as its registration. After equipping Fido or Kitty with a microchip, it’s important to submit your registration and keep your contact information up-to-date. This includes updating your address and telephone number any time they change so rescue workers can reach you. Discuss microchipping with your veterinarian to find out which chips are most commonly use in your area. Different companies sell different chips, so finding out which chips local shelters can scan—and which are most universally read—can increase your chances of being reunited with a lost pet. Keep traditional identification tags on pets with microchips, too, in case a scanner misses the chip or an individual without access to a microchip scanner finds your pet.

Introduzindo um gato novo ao agregado familiar

 Por lucy em 18 Fev 2017 |
Sem comentários
Cats can provide companionship, playmates and more enriching lives for their fellow felines, but introducing a new cat into your household can bring a flurry of tension and hostility when you already have a furry friend. By carefully planning introductions, however, you can ease both cats’ anxiety as they adjust to sharing a home.   Before bringing a cat home, you should first consider which companion you will choose. If your current cat likes to play, a more animated feline is likely a good fit. Likewise, elderly cats may not get along well with energetic kittens. Once you’ve picked your new pet, make a plan for how you’ll introduce him to your resident cat. One of the best ways to ease both pets’ introductions is to set up a special, isolated room for your new cat. This not only gives him a safe spot to adjust to his new home, but allows both cats to smell and hear each other before actually meeting face-to-face. Outfit the room with a litter box, food and fresh water, toys and a few cozy spots for hiding so it feels as welcoming as possible.   Smell is a crucial part of cats’ communication, so make sure your two felines have ample opportunity to get used to each other’s scents before meeting face-to-face. You can do this by feeding both cats on opposite sides of the isolation room door or using a towel to rub both cats, especially on their cheeks where they have pheromone-producing glands. Try switching the cats to opposite rooms after a day or so to allow them to adjust to each others’ smell. Once any hissing or growling through the door subsides, they are likely ready for a visual introduction.   For Kitty’s first encounter with your new pet, use a screen door or baby gate high enough to prevent either cat from jumping over it, or try cracking the door just a few inches to gauge your cats’ reactions if you don’t have any see-through barriers. If both cats seem comfortable, you can allow them to meet face-to-face. Otherwise, continue business as usual feeding, playing with your cats and giving them treats on their respective sides of the gate or door. If a cat won’t eat his food directly in front of the barrier, don’t worry: Move his dish back several feet and gradually inch it closer to the door. In a few days, both cats should be eating comfortably on their respective sides of the barrier and are ready to share a space.   Watch your cats from a distance when they first meet and don’t be alarmed if they hiss, walk away or completely ignore each other. If one cat shows signs of stress or aggression, separate them again and introduce them more gradually. With time, your feline friends will form a bond, providing them with companionship and a more fulfilling life. If, however, you’ve tried introducing your cats slowly and one is still harassing the other, seek advice from a professional behaviorist on how to create harmony among your feline friends.

Planejando o desastre com animais de estimação

 Por lucy em 09 Fev 2017 |
Sem comentários
We all have a plan to keep our families safe when a hurricane, tornado or flood hits home, but making a plan for your pet is equally important when preparing for disaster. Thinking ahead not only helps keep you and your furry companion safe, but increases the chances you and your pet will be reunited if you’re separated during a disaster.   One of the best ways to prepare for an emergency is to ID your pet. Four-legged friends and their owners can be separated for any number of reasons during a disaster, and outfitting your pet proper identification can make a huge difference in your chances for reuniting. Microchips are a great way to do this, and cost only around $45 at your local veterinarian’s office. Collars with tags, including your current contact information, are also useful when it comes to finding a pet. Be sure to keep your pet’s microchip registration up-to-date and include emergency contact information for family or friends outside of your immediate area in case you cannot be reached.   After ensuring Fido or Kitty can be easily identified, finding a pet-friendly place to stay during evacuation is key to planning for an emergency. Look up out-of-area hotels that accept pets or pre-arrange to stay with a friend or relative who doesn’t mind sharing space with your furry friend. Never leave your dog or cat behind if you evacuate. If, however, you have to leave Fido or Kitty, ensure you have a Rescue Alert sticker placed somewhere easily visible on the outside of your house to alert rescue workers to watch out for your animal. The ASPCA provides these stickers free at https://secure.aspca.org/take-action/order-your-pet-safety-pack. Animals often sense impending danger before we do, so bring outdoor pets inside as soon as you know a storm will hit. This can stop your companion from running away and will ensure he stays safe throughout the storm. Stressed-out pets can act out of character, so separate your dogs from cats and any other pets, if possible. Create an emergency kit for each of your pets, including stocks of items such as food, fresh water, any medications your pet takes, a pet first aid kit, temporary ID tags and a carrier or leash for each animal. You may also want to keep a copy of your pet’s vaccination records and a photo of you with your pet in case you need to prove ownership or make “lost pet” fliers after the disaster. Experts recommend keeping enough stocks to last your pet one week in case of an emergency.   Make sure you talk to your neighbors and designate someone willing care for your dog or cat if you’re unable to do so yourself when disaster strikes. This person should have a key to your home and, ideally, be familiar with your pets. Remember, different areas are prone to different types of disasters, so research which are most likely to strike your home and plan accordingly for your and your four-legged friend.
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