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July 2017

Por que os cães adoram lamber?

 Por lucy em 28 Jul 2017 |
2 Comentário (s)
It can seem like a nuisance, but to our canine companions, licking you is most often a sign of affection. While it is a healthy behavior, licking can also indicate something’s wrong with your pet, making it important to pay attention when Fido’s lavishing you with a few too many kisses.   Licking comes naturally to our canine companions. A mother dog licks her pups during grooming, making this a form of affectionate interaction from the start of your pet’s life. Puppies will lick their mothers to draw their attention, too, and your dog may likewise lick you to get your attention and say “hello.” This sort of affectionate licking not only releases endorphins that make your dog feel good, but can help calm and comfort him. The behavior also can be used to indicate social rank, however. Dogs are pack animals by nature and lower-ranking individuals sometimes lick their superiors as an appeasing gesture, often in hopes of being offered communal prey. Your domesticated pet may lick you as an appeasing gesture, too, since you are his superior in the “pack.” Dogs will also use their tongues to tell you the water bowl is empty, they need to go outside, or to communicate some other message. Licking can help heal wounds, too, as canine saliva carries enzymes that help kill bacteria and a good licking can help clean out dirt from an injury. Finally, some dogs simply like the taste of salty skin or are sampling the food particles leftover after cooking.   Because licking is often an attention-grabbing behavior, your pet may learn to incorporate it more and more into his daily routine. While his kisses are generally a sign of affection, you pet can become annoying if he’s offering too many. To discourage slobbery behavior, simply ignore your pet or move to another room when he starts to lick you. If he begins licking while you’re petting him, stop immediately and walk away. With some time, your pet should learn that licking does not get him the attention he wants and will curb the behavior.   Though licking is a healthy habit, there are cases where it becomes a compulsive behavior indicating something is wrong. Obsessive licking can be a sign your dog is suffering from anxiety, boredom, pain or even skin allergies. If your he begins compulsively kissing, ensure your pet is getting plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. If the behavior continues, take him to the vet to rule out allergies or any other physical ailments. If anxiety is the source of his licking behavior, a canine behaviorist or certified dog trainer can help alter your dog’s actions to help him live a happier life.

Animais vegetarianos e veganos

 Por lucy em 26 Jul 2017 |
Sem comentários
Approximately 7.3 million people living in the USA alone are vegetarian and the popularity of a plant-based diet and lifestyle is increasing – understandably, this means some people want to feed their pets a vegetarian or vegan diet, too. People decide to eat a vegetarian diet for a multitude of reasons based on their religious beliefs, cultural background, to protect the environment, try to improve their health and political ideals. Including their pets in this decision can sometimes seem like the logical thing to do, and it can definitely be done for some pets.   Many animals, like cats, some reptiles and some marine mammals, are obligate carnivores. This means they must eat a diet of meat to survive. Only meat from an animal has the complete range of vitamins and amino acids cats need to thrive, so plant-based proteins such as soy simply aren't nutritious enough to keep your cat happy and healthy. Cats can't digest carbohydrates from grains, fruits and vegetables in the same way omnivorous animals can, so meat protein is their main source of energy and nourishment. Make sure your feline friend is provided with high-quality, high-quantity moist meaty food – stay away from anything containing grains and dangerous additives and preservatives.   It is absolutely possible for dogs to eat a vegetarian or even vegan diet, but it's worth checking in with your veterinarian first to make sure your pooch is at peak levels of healthiness. Dogs, unlike cats, can make some of the vitamins and amino acids on their own, but they can still lack other essential nutrients such as iron and taurine that are found in higher concentrations in omnivorous diets. When cutting out meat from a diet, you're also cutting out most of the protein but it can be easily replaced with vegetable and soy protein. Both tasty pre-prepared canned and dry vegetarian and vegan dog foods, as well as home-made dog food recipes, are widely available online. Your dog will never know the difference!   In addition to all cats, puppies should not be fed a vegetarian or vegan diet. When you bring them home, they'll likely have been fed an omnivorous diet and a change in food on top of a change in location will only make them more stressed, upset and unhappy. Only make the change when your vet says your new friend is old enough and healthy enough to move from puppy food to adult dog food.   It is impossible for all animals to thrive on a vegetarian or vegan diet, just as it is impossible for all people. Pre-existing medical conditions and fussy eating habits might restrict your pet from getting as much nutrition or energy from plants as they could from food containing animal products. If necessary, or if a little extra boost is needed, supplements are readily available. Whatever you decide however, it is your pet's health and happiness that is the most important thing.

Por que alguns cães não cascam

 Por lucy em 07 Jul 2017 |
Sem comentários
A silent pet may sound like an apartment dweller’s dream, but in a reality, when dogs don’t bark, it can be a major cause for concern. Before rushing Fido to the vet, however, bear in mind that some dogs are naturally quieter than others or have been conditioned not to bark by a previous owner.   If your dog suddenly falls silent, the first thing you should do is determine whether it’s because he’s not trying to speak, or if he’s making an effort to bark, but cannot. If the latter is true, chances are there is a medical problem and you should seek your veterinarian’s help. While barking too much can cause a dog to lose his voice, more serious medical conditions such as respiratory infections, metabolic disorders, tumors or growths, or lesions in the throat can also cause your dog to lose his voice.   Once you’ve established your pet’s silence is not due to a medical problem, you can relax. Not all dogs are equally vocal and certain breeds, such as bulldogs and greyhounds, are less apt to vocalize their concerns. Some dogs may prefer to whimper, whine or bay over barking. If you’ve recently adopted a shelter dog, his silence may be a symptom of the “honeymoon effect,” during which a new pet holds back his bad behaviors while he adjusts to a new home. Or, your dog’s previous owner may trained have him not to bark using a bark collar or, in worse case scenarios, physical abuse. If this is the case, some patience and gentle bond building can eventually help your dog to find his voice. Some shelter dogs, however, have been debarked, meaning a medical procedure was used to remove their vocal cords and permanently lower the volume of their voices.   Though silence is often a non-issue, problems can arise if your dog refuses to bark when he needs to go outside or be let back in. Fortunately, there are other ways for Fido to let you know he needs help. Many pet owners have had success hanging a wind chime or jingle bells by the door at dog height, allowing their pets to page them without using their voice. If your dog scratches at the door, hang the bells over the spot where he scratches. Take him to the door on a leash, help him ring the bells while using a verbal command, and reward him with a treat before going outside. With some practice, your dog should learn to ring you for assistance without ever needing to raise his voice.

Feliz 4 de julho!

 Por lucy em 04 Jul 2017 |
Sem comentários
Who doesn't love the 4th of July? From the food to the fireworks, Independence Day is fun for the whole family - at least the human family. To pets, the 4th of July can be confusing and terrifying. While humans associate fireworks with spectacle and celebrations, cats and dogs see and hear them as nothing more than sudden loud noises. Holidays for humans can involve inviting new friends and family members into their homes; to a pet, this might feel like an invasion of privacy. A few adjustments to your holiday celebrations can make sure that the day is fun for both pets and their owners.   For most household companions, cat and canine alike, fireworks pose the biggest source of fear on the 4th of July. Humans like the spectacle of bright colours and lights, anticipating the bang as they explode high up in the air, but to a dog or a cat, it can be very sudden and frightening. Some pets completely ignore fireworks, but others find them extremely distressing. Fortunately for both you and your furry friends, there are lots of simple ways to reduce your pet's stress levels during firework season.   1) Keep your pet inside. If your cat is normally an outdoor cat, make sure the outside doors and cat-flaps are closed and that they have access to an indoor litter box. Take your dog for a walk long before the fireworks are due to start. If guests are going in and out of the house frequently, make sure doors are shut firmly to make sure your pet can't escape, and ensure your pet is microchipped and tagged in the event that they do escape.   2) Make sure there is a safe space for your pet. Dogs might seek out a place to hide under a piece of furniture - if you know where that may be, put comforting objects like their favourite toys or a piece of clothing that smells like you there ahead of time. A cat might find their own safe space, but if you know of a favourite place they like to hide ensure that it's not blocked off when the fireworks start so they can hide as soon as they need to. Don't try to coax them out - it will only make them more anxious.   3) Close the curtains and turn on the television or radio. This will help to block out the sound and lights from the fireworks. Your pet will still hear the loud noises from outside but they'll be muffled by a noise they're very used to - human voice.   4) Let your pet move around if they want to. Pacing and circling is a common stress behaviour in dogs - they might be restless or looking for a place to hide. Restricting this movement will only make them more afraid.   5) Act natural. Try to show your pet that you aren't reacting fearfully to the fireworks, so neither should they.   Another thoroughly enjoyable part of celebrating Independence Day for human beings and animals alike is the food. It's hard to resist the temptation to sneak a treat from the table to feed your pooch when they hit you with the puppy eyes. Unfortunately for both dogs and cats, there are quite a few foods that you might be preparing around the 4th of July that can be harmful to them. Grapes, raisins, onions, avocados and chocolate are some foods to both dogs and cats. If your celebrations involve alcohol, keep it far away from pets as all kinds of alcoholic drinks can cause serious inebriation due to their comparatively smaller size and lack of tolerance to alcohol.   To prevent your pets accidentally eating something they shouldn't be, keep the food away from the pets and the pets away from the food. Make sure plates and bowls of food remain out of reach on a worksurface or table and keep a close eye on inquisitive cats. Shut your pets indoors if you're barbecuing or in a room separate from where the food is being prepared and served, far away from anything they could accidentally eat that could do them harm.   As nice as the idea might be to include your pets in celebrating the birthday of America, their safety comes first. Keeping them calm and healthy is your best bet for ensuring everyone, human and animal alike, has a enjoyable day.
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