Friday, May 30, 2008

Buying Pet Health Insurance For Cat Or Dog Peace Of Mind

Cats are a very individual minded animal. In other words, cats do for cats and are not mentally hardwired to follow a leader in the same manner that a dog will. That is why a cat will probably want to forgo the need to acquire proper cat insurance. Now, while cats are notoriously single-minded, human beings should know better. Human owners who love their cats should go the extra length and acquire the proper pet health insurance for cat so as to provide a financial blanket to cover a major procedure in case a pet cat requires such help.

Some may not see the need for cat insurance if the cat is an indoors cat. After all, all the major problems that a pet cat could face derive from an unfortunate incident that might occur outside the safety of the cat's (well, your) home. Unfortunately, common things such as aging can result in medical and dental problems that can prove virtually catastrophic. And remember, such events can occur without any trauma presented to the animal or in conjunction with any out or normal circumstance.

It is not uncommon for a cat to develop bad breath. Sometimes, the halitosis will be so severe that the cat's owner decides to take the pet to the vet to have a little dental cleaning performed. It shouldn't be that big of a problem, should it? After all, a little dental cleaning certainly won't cost that much. Well, if all that is required is a little dental cleaning, then there will not be much of a cost.

But what happens if the cat has developed a severe cavity that needs to be pulled? What it there are two or three cavities? What if there is the presence of gum disease that may lead to a life threatening infection? What if a blood test is required in order to gauge the severity of the potential infection? All of a sudden, a $50 visit to the vet has expanded into a major procedure that can cost upwards of $500. Pet health insurance for cat is the answer.

If that cautionary tale did not provide proper impetus for motivation to purchasing proper cat insurance, nothing will. Well, actually, there can be a whole host of cautionary tales provided that would hopefully motivate people into purchasing cat insurance. The common thread behind of these cautionary tales is the moral of the story: accidents and problems can occur at any time.

Therefore, it is always wise to have the precaution of a proper cat insurance policy in place so as to financially cover any catastrophe that might occur. Pet health insurance for cat can be acquired from a quality insurance issuer and is usually quite affordable. Furthermore, the coverage can be quite extensive and all encompassing.

Craig Thornburrow is an acknowledged expert in his field. You can get more free advice on dog insurance and cat insurance at

Tips on Buying an Amphibian for a Pet

So you are in the market for a pet frog, toad or salamander and you are wondering what your first step should be? We can spell it out in one word: RESEARCH. Because there are literally thousands of amphibians to chose from, before purchasing one you need decide which one is going to work best for you.

If you are thinking that an amphibian would make a great pet because they are low maintenance, think again. Some require specific temperatures, amounts of light, water among other things. So, you need to be sure that you are going to be able to give your new pet everything they need to be healthy and happy. Many require fresh food daily, so you can't just throw in some insects for them to eat and go away for a three day weekend. You need to make sure that someone will be able to look after their dietary needs while you are gone.

We suggest that you begin to look at pictures of toads, frogs and amphibians on line, pick the ones that catch your interest and then begin doing research on them. This way you are getting one that is pleasing to your eye and fits into your lifestyle.

After you have chosen the amphibian you like, begin to research stores where they are sold. First, you want to make sure that it is legal to have the amphibian you want. It is actually against the law to own or sell certain types of amphibians. You want to make sure that you are buying from a reputable seller.

While we don't discourage from buying online as there are many reputable sellers online, we do encourage you to check out local pet stores as well. If you have any problems, need additional information or supplies for you new pet, they are close by and you can get supplies when you need them instead of having to wait for delivery.

We also suggest you your plans for your new pet by a local Veterinarian. The Vet might have some helpful suggestions as to where to you can buy your pet and what will keep him healthy. Some cities have Veterinarian offices that specialize in amphibians and reptiles, which would be a great resource for you.

Now that you have these tips to get you started, it's time for you to start researching your pet amphibian possibilities. With so many to choose from, you should have to problem finding the right pet for you. What are you waiting for? Start your research today.

For more information on Anphibians visit our site at


Thursday, May 29, 2008

Always Buy From A Rottweiler Breeder And Never A Pet Store

By Sharon Davies

A Rottweiler is an investment like any other pet and when you have made the decision that it is time to get a Rottweiler puppy you may want to talk to a reputable Rottweiler breeder and avoid a pet store. A pet store is great for buying all of the supplies you will need for your pet but they should not be allowed to sell living animals at all. The travesty is that a pet store selling puppies gets worse and worse every year.

The different humane societies in the United States refer to places called puppy mills as the sources of puppies for pet stores. In a puppy mill there is no regard for good breeding and in some cases there is no regard for sanitary conditions. Dogs are bred constantly and thrown into a cage and then sold to you. The results can often be very sad and tragic.

When you get your Rottweiler puppy from a Rottweiler breeder your breeder will start you off with detailed care and feeding instructions that you can use to make sure you are giving your dog everything it needs. A breeder took the time to get your puppy used to living in a home setting and has tried to get your puppy used to the clatter and excitement that goes on every day in the average home.

A pet store clerk is there to ring you out and take your money. They usually know nothing about your dog and can offer you absolutely no advice that is going to help you in raising and caring for your dog. Your puppy has only seen people through the grate of a cage and has never been outside their cage so your home will be a brand new, and potentially terrifying, experience for your pet store puppy.

If you get your Rottweiler puppy from a reputable Rottweiler breeder you can pretty much be sure that the puppy is in good health as breeders check for disease and any health issues. If there are problems later on the breeder will work with you to solve them. To a pet store a puppy is a product and some products have problems just by the mass production methods used to make them. This is truly a sad way to treat an animal and is something no one should support.

Pet stores have their niche of selling pet supplies that we all need for our pets but they should not be selling live animals at all. Puppies sold at a pet store have a very low chance of a healthy life and that can be an unfortunate outcome for you and your family as well as the puppy. If people stopped buying puppies from pet stores then maybe they would finally stop selling them and puppy mills would cease to exist.

Sharon Davies is an animal lover with many years of experience breeding many purebred dogs. This article will give you the advantages of buying from Rottweiler breeders over a pet store. For important Rottweiler information you should check out this article.

Buying Eco Friendly Pet Furniture

Your dog or cat is probably is not all that worried about global warming and deforestation, but a lot of owners are, and so many are now adding environment friendly pet furniture to the eco-friendly items they have in their homes.

In just the last couple years there has been an explosion in eco friendly pet furniture sales, and to meet the demand manufacturers have produced a vast new array of pet related eco-friendly products.

Pet owners across the country are now seeking out quality, eco-friendly items for their pets, giving the same emphasis to buying planet saving products for their pets, as they do to their homes and vehicles.

This movement seems to be mushrooming each year, with sales of these products, such as certified organic pet beds booming across the nation. Many owners now feed their pets, as well as themselves, on organically produced food items. Many vinyl and plastic toys for pets are produced from soft PVC, which contains several harmful toxic chemicals. When your dog chews on his favorite squeaky ball these harmful chemicals can leach into the animals system, causing serious side effects such as organ damage and tumors.

It is preferable to search out toys that use natural dyes or organically grown fibers that are chemical and pesticide free, these items are also biodegradable. Another good example of pet and planet saving products are certified organic pet beds which are filled with various materials, often100% fleece scraps that have been recycled.

These beds can be slightly more expensive than regular pet beds, but are a better long-term investment as they are completely washable, even the soft filling. So instead of dumping the bed in the trash after a couple years, the bed should last your pet's lifetime. There are many other eco pet products available, such as environment friendly pet furniture, one stylish example is the 'Kings Bed,' a classy off the ground certified organic pet bed made from bamboo.

Holden designs have produced several upmarket pieces of eco friendly pet furniture including their chic raised pet feeding units. There are also dog and cat houses made of eco-friendly materials, such as replenishable wooden doghouses and interior cat homes made with recycled cotton materials.

Therefore, your pet can be as environmentally conscious as you are, with food, toys furniture and pet houses that are made from materials that will not harm the planet or you're pet.

Kristen Sky is founder of Modern Eco Homes dot com, which sells a wide range of environment friendly prefab homes, certified organic pet furniture and indoor and outdoor eco-friendly furniture

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Stopping The Puppy From Biting

A puppy often bites and nips as part of his natural play behavior. Biting and nipping by a puppy when in the dog family is an acceptable form of play behavior and if the puppy becomes overly aggressive the biting is dealt with immediately by the other member of the dog pack who is being bitten too harshly. If the puppy should bite another puppy too hard,the offended puppy will yelp loudly and scurry away, to go nurse his wounds or play with someone else. In the case of the alpha dog or the mother of the pup, she will firmly and immediately place her entire mouth over the pup's head and neck and hold him down, or she will gently but equally as firmly place her foot over him and hold him down. Often this is accompanied with a low growl. Sometimes the disciplined puppy will yelp out of surprise for her punishment is swift and intended to teach a lesson. The mother is a firm but gentle disciplinarian. In either case, the puppy who is the aggressive biter is quickly taught that he committed a serious offense.

When a puppy doesn't know the body language of other dogs, he can get into more trouble in many areas other than the biting problem. Not only does he not know how to bite gently, he doesn't know how to greet alpha members of the pack, or how to behave submissively upon meeting new dogs, or how to respond to aggression from other dogs so that a fight does not ensue. He has never learned pack behavior and how to respond to other dogs, how to inhibit his bite, how to face discipline and how to submit to discipline.

This is quite common if a family acquires a puppy who was removed early from his littermates and his dog family. Unfortunately there are many puppies who have come from backgrounds where the breeders do not know or do not care if the pup is taken away from the littermates at an early age. For optimum learning of pack behavior a puppy should remain within the canine family unit until the age of at least 8 weeks and preferably 12 weeks. It is common for new puppies in a human family to bite and nip the children they are playing with and to bite and nip the adults in the family also. If he has never learned appropriate pack behavior, he often bites too hard.

There is a very successful way to teach bite inhibition, which is not painful to the puppy but actually utilizes natural dog language. "Bite inhibition" is geared to teaching the puppy to bite softly, rather than stopping the behavior entirely. This is especially useful if you have a working dog that you will be training to retrieve, or to work as an assistance dog, where he must pick up and carry items in his mouth. It is also useful for training herding dogs who may still be expected to nip at livestock. This is not necessarily important for other breeds such as toy dogs, however, it is still an effective method of teaching a dog so that his nipping behaviors will not physically lead to breaking the skin or actually biting.

What the human master will actually do is take over the part of the littermate of the puppy or the dam of the puppy. You have to inform the puppy in no uncertain terms, that biting HURTS. This is done by yelling "OUCH" loudly when the puppy nips at you and immediately retreating away from the puppy. This is exactly what another puppy would do if he was bitten too hard by a littermate. You can expand upon this by actually allowing the puppy to nip at your hand, even quite softly and when he does, act as if he really did hurt you, even when he didn't! The puppy will believe that he has hurt you and will mouth even more gently the next time!

Alternatively, you can also grab the puppy by the scruff of the neck and pin him down for a moment or two to the floor, which is what the puppy's dam would do when teaching him not to bite. When you use this maneuver, you can growl menacingly at the pup, "don't bite!"

It is important that you administer either one of these quickly and immediately when the puppy bites. Both of these methods are much more effective if used on a puppy before the age of 12 weeks. After that age, the best way to inform the puppy of his bad behavior is to simply stalk away haughtily when the puppy nips; show him quite obviously that you will have absolutely nothing to do with him the instant he uses his teeth.

An important component of training this behavior is to inform all members of the family and all people who come into contact with your puppy that they are not to play tug of war with the dog. This is the opposite of "soft mouthing" behavior and will quickly undo the changes that you have accomplished in the puppy's behavior.

Michael Russell

Your Independent guide to Dog Training

Buying Live Aquarium Fish Online

You've got many choices when purchasing live aquarium fish online these days. Traditionally, saltwater aquarists would head into their local fish stores hoping to find something new and exotic. Location and transportation prohibited those who lived far from the coast from enjoying the incredible diversity of saltwater fish the ocean holds. But now, with overnight shipping and improved collection methods, hobbyists everywhere can enjoy live aquarium fish in their homes.

Buying saltwater fish online is very similar to buying them at a local fish store, however there are a few things you should know in order to ensure your buying experience is a good one. Below are some tips for making your purchase.

First, most online retailers have the physical space and the buying power to offer many marine fish that you might have ever heard of or had experience with. Be sure to take your time viewing their sites and research the information they provide about the fish they sell. Remember that even though they're an online retailer, you can call them and ask questions. Be sure to ask about the fish's behavior, its eating habits, and its current health. Most retailers will be happy to help you.

Second, remember that shipping is expensive so try to maximize your order. Buying a few extra fish now may be less expensive than a separate order later, provided you're able to safely house them now. Also, larger fish typically mean larger or multiple boxes which can increase costs.

Finally, make sure you're prepared to receive the fish on your end. Just because they've arrived safely doesn't mean the journey's over. Be sure to properly acclimate them and ensure your home aquarium will provide the type of environment they're accustomed to. Provided you follow these simple tips, you should have a great experience buying live aquarium fish online!

Andrew Ayers is the owner of Aquarium Fish Live, a website designed to help hobbyists purchase saltwater and marine fish online. For more information, please visit

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Tips On Buying Boston Terriers

By Wendy Caples

A Boston Terrier makes for an ideal companion. They are well-mannered, gentle, alert and highly intelligent. They have the keenness to learn, which makes them easily trainable. If you don't have kids, and want to shower you love and attention to a pet then a Boston Terrier is a superb choice

There are a lot of places you can get your Boston Terrier from. There's the common pet shop, a Boston Terrier breeder, puppy mills, and a Boston Terrier rescue center. Which ever you may choose, the process may be grueling. If you want the best pet you have to buy from the best, and in order to find the best you have to be patient enough to gather all the information needed in selecting the place to get your Boston Terrier. A pet shop usually carries all types of animals. From aquatic to land animals they all have it. But there are things you will have to consider.

Local kennel clubs can also help in recommending where to buy your Boston Terrier. When you go into a pet shop, the first thing you should notice is where they place the Boston Terrier. Is it clean? Does it smell nice? What are they feeding the animal? How does the animal look?

The second thing you should notice is the staff. If you are keen enough you will notice if the staff has very good knowledge of animal care, and genuinely adores the animals. This is a good signal as to whether the pet shop really cares for the animals.

You will want to buy from a pet shop that is truthfully compassionate with the animal. This is because a compassionate pet shop means that they did their research and responsibility and probably get their dogs from good Boston Terrier breeders. A Boston Terrier that comes from a reputable breeder is probably well taken care of, and will definitely be in excellent health.

Make a list of all the questions you may have about the dog before going into the pet shop or meeting with a Boston Terrier breeder. Ask to speak to the owner or the manager the pet shop. Your list should contain these questions: Where is the dog from? Has it been vaccinated or dewormed? If so what type? Does it have pedigree papers? Do you have vaccination certificates? Can you meet the breeder? Can you see where the dog came from?

Another good idea is to bring your neighborhood vet to look the dog over. A veterinarian's trained eye may spot defects and health problems that you may not be able to notice. A superior Boston should meet AKC standards for height, weight, expression and demeanor. A Boston terrier will make a good companion, if you choose the right one and buy from excellent breeders. It's not important that the dog is cute, what essential is that the Boston Terrier's personality should jive with that of yours.

Wendy Caples has genuine admiration for Boston Terriers well mannered ways and high intelligence. Reputable Boston Terrier breeders spend years learning and planning.. You must be dedicated and patient enough to take care of such a time consuming kind of dog. To be able to take ample care of your pet, you will need the best resources for your Boston Terrier information. So go to your local Boston Terrier Kennel Club for updates and advice.


Tropical Fish Tips

By Bobby Wilson

Here are few tropical fish keeping tips

Tip 1 - Tropical fish is easy to care and most of the people buy in pair. But educate yourself about tropical fish before you buy any tropical fish as buying tropical fish without proper knowledge can become very expensive hobby.

So you should do proper research to keep tropical fish as your hobby.

Tip 2 - Make sure you learn about fish keeping before you start buying tropical fish.

Tip 3 - You have to make sure you become familiar with setting up aquarium.

Tip 4 - Make sure you change 20 percent of water every 30 days. You should check water, temperature, pH, hardness, etc every day.

Tip 5 - You should not keep tropical fish frozen food for more than 3 months.

Tip 6 - One of the very important tips for tropical fish is to give fish a proper diet of about 35% of protein, 10% of fat. Fish diet should also have amino acids.

Tip 7 - Another important tip is to feed fish 2 to 3 times a day. And don't over feed them.

Tip 8 - You should get largest aquarium possible. When you have bigger aquarium tropical fish will have more flexibility to more around. Select plants, rocks, gravel, wood etc properly to give your set-up better look.

Tip 9 - Don't adjust water temperature abruptly.

Tip 10 - You fish should not in direct sunlight as that will increase the water temperature and will create green algae problem.

Above are just basic tips about tropical fish hobby. learn more tips about fish before starting your hobby or even if you started learn more tips about fishes.

To find out other crucial tips for tropical fish, you should visit this site:

Bobby Wilson writes articles on different topics that interest him.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Early Developmental Stages of the Puppy

When puppies are first born and for the first three weeks of their life, their total awareness is confined to their sense of smell. Their eyes do not open for at least two weeks and it is often three weeks before their sense of hearing is beginning to come into play. Consequently, their whole existence is limited to the knowledge that they glean from their sense of smell. Even these first few weeks can have an impact on the puppies' training. For example, if the pups are kept in an unclean environment or small confinement where the dam has no chance to keep a clean bed area for her pups, this will sometimes carry through into later life and a puppy will be more difficult to housetrain.

Puppies who are exposed to light stress in this period of time seem to have a better ability to withstand stress later in their lives. Changes in the environmental temperature, being handled, being moved about...these are "stressors" for the young puppy. Breeders who routinely clean the whelping area, removing the puppies while cleaning out the area, picking them up, weighing them, are also actually improving the puppies ability later in life to adapt to changes.

The period of three weeks to six weeks is the most opportune time for the puppy to develop true "dog behaviors". Puppies who are removed from their littermates before six weeks often do not learn dog behavior. When they are with littermates, they are taught what a bite is and whether they are biting too hard. They are taught what a growl means and what will happen if they ignore a growl. In short, they are taught manners by their littermates and their dam. These manners will be important to them all the rest of their lives when they interact with other dogs.

After the third week and all through the growing up in the whelping area, puppies should be exposed to as many different environmental stimulation as possible. Surfaces they can walk on that are wobbly, things they can smell and bounce around with their noses or their paws, things that make noise, things that they can climb on...all are important for the tactile, sensual and emotional development of the dog. Imaginative breeders will fill the lives of the puppies with such stimulation, knowing that in the end it will provide for a well-balanced animal that can adapt to many different situations and remain a stable personality.

Puppies often go through what some behaviorists call a "fear stage" at about eight to nine weeks of age. This developmental stage seems to be a time when puppies will be affected more strongly by occurrences that may startle them or frighten them. Puppies who have already been heavily exposed to lots of stimulation in their environment are much less likely to be influenced by unusual or traumatic events during this "fear stage".

Taking all of this into consideration, one can see that the choice of a puppy's breeder can be important in the choice of a puppy. Prospective "parents" of a new puppy would do well to evaluate not only the new puppy but the breeder of the puppy and seek out a breeder who has some knowledge about the early developmental stages of the puppy.

Michael Russell Your Independent guide to Dog Training

The Life Of A Puppy Mill Puggle And A Puggle Born In A Loving Home

Many people think that it doesn't matter where a puppy comes from, but this could not be farther from the truth. Unfortunately, because people think that if they are not looking for a dog to show or dependable working dogs, that it is not important where the puppy lived before it got to their home. They just think that what counts is how they will be treated in their home. Sadly, when you choose to ignore where the puppy or dog came from, you could be very disappointed when the dog does not warm up to you or is terrified of a member of your family because they were scared of particular people in the dog farm or puppy mill that they came from.

The Life of a Puppy Mill Puggle

A dog's experience in his first few weeks of life is crucial to a dog's development. Puppy's that are born in a dog farm live in cages, rather than with human companionship. They miss out on the essential companionship they need to develop an emotional connection with people.

Sadly, one of the experiences they miss out on is that they have to leave their mother and brothers or sisters way too early, so they can be marketed for sale during their "adorable" stage of life.

There are number of behavior problems your puggle may have if born in this type of setting, one of which is house training. Why is this? Puggles born in cages live around feces and urine. They lose their natural instincts to keep their areas clean. In fact, many of these dogs have never even seen grass. They just are not conditioned to go to the bathroom anywhere but their cages. House training feels almost impossible! It will take a lot of extra work to finally get the dog to go outside and do his business.

Another behavior problem your dog may end of taking on is biting. Because your puggle has been shipped off too soon for marketing purposes, he misses out on the opportunity to learn bite inhibition from his mother. This must happen with his mother and littermates.

A puggle that is born in a dog farm only knows life from the cage. He has not been around situations that every day life will encounter. Therefore, these dogs will have a hard time handling normal family situations, such as men, kids, cats and any other situations that happen inside of a home. This leads to behavior problems and many times these puggles end up in rescue organizations as families are just not able to break the fear these puppies or dogs are experiencing.

The Life of a Puggle Born in a Loving Home Environment

A puggle born into a loving home will benefit from the companionship of its mother and a loving family. They will be allowed to stay with their mother for the amount of time necessary to nurse and learn behaviors from its mother. This puppy will be trained to go outside, and will be much easier to house train.

The most important benefit that a puppy can receive from a loving family is the ability to handle the unexpected. These situations include children grabbing at them, cats hissing at them, sibling rivalry, parents or children yelling at each other and any other thing that is "normal" in a family's surroundings that is absolutely not a norm for a puppy mill puppy.

These puppies will be able to get used to unfamiliar surroundings a lot quicker and will be able to become a member of another family much easier. These puggles tend to remain with their families forever!

Dog Farm Breeders Verses Responsible Home Breeders

Dog farms breed animals for one purpose and one purpose only, profit. A typical life of a dog that is bred in these conditions is usually waste, solitude, anxiety and agony. The only way a person can profit from this "business" is at the expense of the dog. They must provide the minimum requirements to keep the dog alive and able to breed in order to make a profit.

Where is the humanity? What has happened to compassion? No matter how you spin it, these dogs are being used for the sole purpose of human profit. Those of you who do not actually breed dogs in these conditions, but have chosen to purchase a puppy born in a dog farm are contributing to the cycle of suffering.

How are you contributing? When you see that puppy, you don't see suffering. You just see a cute little puppy that needs your love. The problem is that puppy's mother is being abused and suffering from horrible conditions just to create the puppy. When you actually buy a puppy from a puppy mill, you are ensuring more suffering for its mother.

Responsible Breeders are not looking for a profit. There are usually a number of reasons they will breed a puggle. Although they may get a little bit of "extra" money in the process, generally they breed for the satisfaction of bringing a new family member into a family's life. They are more particular on the parents of the puggles. Genetics plays an important role in a dog's temperament, as well as the first several weeks of life.

When you get your puppy from a responsible breeder, you can be sure that this is the best way possible to end up with a healthy puppy that will grow into a loyal, happy and healthy dog that will become a part of the family, rather than an outsider looking in.

Christy Taylor, author, is a Puggle owner and an in-home family puggle breeder. For more Free information on Puggles visit her blog at

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Biodegradable Dog Waste Bags - The Only Solution

By Keith King

For those of us who own dogs, especially those city dwellers, there is a common problem that we all face on a daily basis. Dog waste removal is not only a requirement of responsible pet ownership, but in many cities it is the law.

The idea of putting something that is 100% biodegradable into plastic bags seems less than earth friendly. Some plastic bags can take up to 100 years to degrade, this is not a solution.

Obviously the best solution is to take the waste and flush it down the toilet, but modern living often doesn't allow us that luxury. There is no reason to put naturally biodegradable waste into our already overfull landfills. The solution is biodegradable dog waste bags.

The green movement has finally gotten around to bowel movements and now green manufacturers are creating completely biodegradable bags that look, feel and work like traditional plastic. These bags contain no polyethylene, the common ingredient in real plastic bags.

Rather than making bags out of almost non-degradable polyethylene, green innovators are creating biodegradable dog waste bags out of corn starch. These new bags solve the recycling problem of traditional plastic bags and offer new options as well.

Dog owners now have the several choices for waste disposal. The waste and the bag can now be used on your backyard compost pile where both items will decompose naturally. It can be buried where both the bag and the waste will be eaten by microorganisms.

The waste can also be left for curbside pickup if your community has such an option, many do and more are providing the option to their residents. If yours doesn't yet, call your local government official and ask when curbside composting pickup might be available.

The best biodegradable dog waste bags are made of GMO free corn, which means that there were no genetically modified organisms used in the production of the bags. GMO free also means that you can use the waste as part of your compost for any organic agriculture or gardening.

Dog ownership includes many joys, the least of which is waste disposal. As a responsible dog owner and citizen, it is important to make the right choice for your pet and the planet. Biodegradable dog waste bags return to the earth as quickly as food scraps and leave no harmful residue. They offer a variety of choices for disposal and leave both you and your dog with the feeling of a job well done.

Are you a dog owner looking for a better solution to those plastic bags you have to use? Want to know more about dog waste bags that don't harm the planet? Click now to see the original and still the best biodegradable dog waste bags

Leash Training Your English Bull Mastiff Dog

Why Dogs Pull on the Leash

Pulling on the leash is actually a very common problem with dogs in general, not just for Mastiffs. A dog might pull for several reasons. Most often it is only because they are very excited. Allowing the dog to settle down before walking can often stop the leash pulling.

Sometimes, because of the dog pack mentality, a dog assumes leadership over its owner as if he were the leader of the pack. Therefore, the dog must be trained as to who the master is. The owner must establish him or herself as the leader of the pack. Failure to do so will result in ineffective training of any kind.

How to Leash Train

The first step is to train your English Bull Mastiff to sit still while you put the leash around his neck. Mastiffs love to spend time with their owners and they become very excited. Training your dog to be calm while preparing to go for a walk is an important step to leash training.

You can put toys or treats in your pocket to encourage your Mastiff to remain near your side as you walk. If he loses his concentration because a cat or another dog is nearby, you can change direction and coax him with a treat to get his attention back.

The idea is to get your puppy to be aware of you and your body so he will walk beside you and not wander or pull on the leash. If he begins to wander off or pull, stop walking. The collar will tighten and he will have to stop and turn and look at you. He will probably be confused at first as to why you are stopping. Coax him back to you and try walking together again.

At times you may need to give a gentle tug on the leash to get your puppy's attention and to remind him that you are in charge. Never jerk harshly on the leash as this can cause damage to your dog's trachea. You only want to get his attention, not frighten or harm your puppy.

Be consistent and persistent when leash training your English Bull Mastiff dog. Always, always praise him for his obedience. Mastiffs love nothing more than to please their owners, so praise goes a long way. Be patient, firm, and kind as you will get the desired results.

Leash training is so important, especially with large dogs. Failure to do so can lead to all sorts of problems, especially if they get off the leash around young children or other dogs. A well trained English Bull Mastiff is a joy to own and to be around.

Sam Daniels is a dog trainer and enthusiast and, for a limited time, is offering his extensive Mastiff Care Secrets course free of charge. It is jam-packed full of must-have information for Mastiff owners! To learn more about Mastiff care just go here

Sam Daniels is a dog trainer and enthusiast and, for a limited time, is offering his extensive Mastiff Care Secrets course free of charge. It is jam-packed full of must-have information for Mastiff owners! Learn more about Mastiff Care Now!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Pet Allergy Signs and Symptoms

By Paolo Basauri

Pet allergy is a common type of allergy. Don't be surprised if you are one of the people on this planet that suffers from this allergy, it could be beneficial to know the symptoms of this condition, especially when you plan to buy a pet.

Common symptoms of pet allergy

Below is a list of the most common symptoms of pet allergy. The severity of the symptoms will depend on the current state of your immune system. Men and women who have a weak immune system will have these symptoms more pronounced:

  • Watery and itchy eyes
  • Constant sneezing
  • Nasal congestion
  • Soar throat
  • Postnasal drip
  • Itchy nose and roof of mouth

Sometimes rashes are always present, in special when you have had direct contact with the allergens on the pet.

Pet allergy symptoms in people with asthma

People who have asthma run greater risks when involved with pet allergies. The respiratory problems these allergies bring can even pose a life threat. Among the symptoms experienced by asthmatic people we have:

  • Congestion of the lungs
  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Respiratory problems, shortness of breath

When do symptoms appear?

These symptoms appear usually in minutes, although hours and -in rare cases- even days can pass before you start noticing them.

If you notice some of these symptoms, try to determine if the pet is indeed the cause of them. The best way to assess this, is by being away from the pet for at least two days and observe if the symptoms seem to go down. If you have asthma, the best thing to do is visit a doctor specialist in pet allergies; he or she will decide the best treatment for you. But be prepared, in cases like asthma, where risk is high, the only option could be finding your pet another home.

Learn all about pet allergies on

In there you'll find a lot of articles and information about pet allergies and animal allergies in general.

Dog Dental Insurance Can Help

Why would you want dog dental insurance?

The state of a dog's teeth and gums has an effect on their overall health. Neglecting a dog's dental hygiene can cause severe health problems and shorten his or her life by several years.

If you brush your dog's teeth daily and feed your dog a raw food diet, you may be able to keep your dog's mouth healthy without your dog ever needing a professional cleaning.

However, most dog owners opt for the convenience of feeding their dog kibble and neglect to brush their dog's teeth. One reason is that if the dog is in a household with kids, the parents may be so busy trying to keep up with their own and their kids' dental needs that dog dental hygiene is neglected.

If your dog falls into that category and isn't one of those dogs whose mouth stays healthy regardless, an annual visit to the vet that includes a dental cleaning can help keep severe problems at bay.

Since most dogs are not trained to sit still with their jaws open while someone works on their teeth (let alone trained how to rinse and spit!) veterinarians usually opt for general anesthesia for dental cleanings and other kinds of dental work.

Do not avoid taking your dog for dental cleanings because you are afraid of the anesthesia risk. Talk to your vet. He or she will probably confirm that although general anesthesia always carries some risk, veterinary anesthesia has become a lot safer over the years. Before giving anesthesia, a good vet will make sure there are no health problems that put the dog at greater risk, and will often do a checkup, some blood work and perhaps other tests a few days beforehand.

All of these things can add up to quite a bit of money: the checkup, the blood work, the anesthesia, and the actual dental work. Dog dental insurance can help cut down on some of these costs.

Dog dental insurance is not as common as dog health insurance. However, a few pet insurance companies do pay a percentage of dog dental cleaning costs, as part of a "wellness" or "prevention" package attached to a health insurance policy. Others will help you pay for anesthesia and more extensive dental work such as root canals and extractions. These are usually included inside a particular dog health care plan.

As with any insurance policy, you will need to do quite a bit of research to find the right dog dental insurance plan. Try to buy only the coverage you need. Be sure to look for things that are excluded, such as pre-existing conditions, or required waiting periods. Check to see if your dog is too old or not. If you are unsure what a policy will cover, contact the insurance company and make sure you get a satisfactory answer before signing up for anything.

To reduce your premiums, check to see if there is a dog club in your area through which to obtain insurance at a lower group rate. Or perhaps see if your co-workers are willing to form a group with you. You could even check to see if your employer is willing to pay all or part of your pet insurance.

After you have done your research, weigh the costs and benefits. If your dog is generally healthy, and you have a dog accident policy to cover unforeseen events, you may decide that it's cheaper to just set aside money each month to pay for an annual checkup and cleaning. Either way, for your dog's health and your peace of mind, it may be wise to invest in some type of dog dental insurance.

Jo Soliday has been a dog lover since childhood. For further information about companies offering dog dental insurance at

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Losing a Pet

Pets become members of our family, and quickly win our hearts. Losing a pet causes the same kind of grief as other losses, and that grief, and the resultant mourning period, should be taken just as seriously. In modern society, we have rituals and ceremonies that help us when we lose a loved one. Wakes, funerals, burial services and visits to the gravesites are important in helping us to deal with the loss. But typically, with the loss of a pet we have no such ceremonies to aid us in the grieving process, even though the grief is just as real.

In her book, On Death and Dying, Elizabeth K├╝bler-Ross described grief as having 5 stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. Losing a beloved pet is a traumatic life moment, but time, and an understanding of the stages of grief and how to deal with them, can be important steps in healing.

1. Denial. The first stage often occurs immediately and passes quickly, but it can linger for some time, depending on the age of the pet and the circumstances. The inability to believe that a dog or cat is really gone, especially after having the pet for years, is a normal part of the grieving process.

2. Anger. Why did my pet have to die? Why did it have to happen this way? Anger is a perfectly natural reaction to losing something so dear. Understanding that all living things must die, that the only mystery is when and where, can help ease you through this stage.

3. Bargaining. This often happens immediately, like denial and anger, with pleas for the pet to live, perhaps making deals with God that if everything is okay, you'll be better, or go to church, or give to charity. Any number of bargains can come into play, depending on your lifestyle. This is a natural reaction to a trauma-somehow we try to find a way to undo what's happened, or make it okay. A part of bargaining unique to the loss of a pet is a type of bargain with yourself, in which you tell yourself that if you get another pet, you won't hurt so much. And some make oaths to never have another pet again, because it's too painful to lose them. It's common to believe that either of those things will stop or greatly alleviate the pain, but often, that doesn't hold true. A new pet might distract you from the pain for a while, but you owe it to yourself to deal with your grief as well as you can before taking on the responsibility of another pet. Conversely, there's no need to deprive yourself of the joys of pet ownership in the future just to avoid losing another pet. These extreme feelings will pass.

4. Depression. When the denial and anger have faded, and it's obvious that bargaining doesn't help, depression can set in. Depression is a normal reaction to loss. You're sad because your loved pet is gone, and the pain of that loss is terrible. Ways to cope with the depression include good nutrition, enough exercise, and enough sleep. Be around people and socialize to avoid the loneliness that can come from missing a pet, but realize that you cannot avoid the pain of the loss. Instead, try to focus not on how your pet is gone from your life, but on the joy your pet brought to your life while he or she was with you. Make a photo album or keepsake album of dog or cat pictures, a special memento that you can look at when you want to revisit specific memories.

5. Acceptance. The final stage of grief is the hardest to reach--the acceptance that what has happened cannot be changed, and that a beloved pet is truly gone. But accepting that a cherished companion is no longer with you does not mean that you'll forget the pet or the happy times you shared. Some people equate lessening grief with a sort of disrespect, but that's not so. There are many ways to honor your pet's memory and his or her importance in your life, even as the pain of loss lessens. You can place a lovely headstone at your pet's gravesite, or choose a memorial stone for your yard or garden. Keep your pet's collar or favorite toy in a keepsake box with your pet's photo on the outside. These serve as powerful symbols of remembrance and love, and can help you feel closer to your pet in a healthy and sustainable way.

Losing a pet is painful, but the grief and sadness you feel is necessary and healthy. Now is the time to move from mourning your pet's loss to celebrating the time you had with your special animal. Take the time to be good to yourself and honor your pet's memory in a way that feels right to you.

Shelley Ontis is a freelance writer who writes for

Remmeer offers a wide variety of pet lover sympathy gifts, including cat memorial markers and dog memorial stones.

Importance of Play and your Puppy

Puppies that learn to play human games grow into dogs that view humans as a source of pleasure and enjoyment. Such dogs are much more fun to have around and are also more sociable. They probably have a better life in a human society than dogs that have learned only to play with other dogs.

Playing games is more than just a way for you and your puppy to have fun even though having fun while playing games is quite important for your puppy. Games allow both of you to find things out about each other and learn characteristics that may prove to be significant later in life. Fears of certain experiences can be addressed during play. A better understanding of each other as well as simply getting to know each other will be extremely valuable during play.

Regular positive activity with your puppy will help develop a strong bond between the two of you. Unfortunately, some dog owners can have a dog without ever establishing a loving, lasting bond. Dogs are very social animals and enjoy a loving relationship. Engaging in frequent play sessions will help establish an attachment and a friendship that will develop into a devoted trust. Establishing this bond and trust will lead to much more success with your attempts at training. Puppy will want to please and will work all that much harder just to make his or her master happy.

The more you play with your dog the more it will consider you the most interesting aspect of life. Again, the more the puppy wants to be with you the more it will want to please you. This means that the training experiences will definitely be more successful.

Games are also an appropriate outlet for a dog's natural instinct to hunt or work. Diverting your dog's need to hunt and work by play will satisfy the animal's desires and will make your life much easier. Instead of hunting and expending energy inside the living room, puppy will be using and satisfying those needs during playtime. Many dogs require much physical and mental stimulation. Lack of exercise may result in a bored and very unhappy puppy, which leads to many behavior problems. Preventing these negative habits from occurring in the first place is a key in establishing good and appropriate behaviors.

Puppies generally should not be walked for long distances so short walks and a number of play sessions each day is ideal. How practical this is for many dog owners is questionable but the responsibility of the owner is to satisfy the needs of the dig so proper opportunities should be provided for the puppy. The use of play toys will also provide an outlet for the active puppy. Just make certain that the toy is appropriate for the age of the dog.

Try to initiate play when the puppy is doing the correct things. You do not want to start a play session just when the dog is misbehaving because then you are simply reinforcing negative behavior. You must be aware of doing that at all times. Reinforce the positive, not the negative. Establishing a positive play relationship with your dog will prove to be an extremely rewarding experience for both.

Michael Russell Your Independent guide to Dog Training


Sunday, May 4, 2008

Top 20 Dog Quotations

By Danielle Hollister

Get to know your beloved dog better with these insightful quotations all about your best four-legged friend...

  1. " A wise man associating with the vicious becomes an idiot; a dog travelling with good men becomes a rational being."
    --Arabian Proverb

  2. "You can say any fool thing to a dog, and the dog will give you this look that says, `My God, you're RIGHT! I NEVER would've thought of that!'"
    -- Dave Barry

  3. "A boy can learn a lot from a dog: obedience, loyalty, and the importance of turning around three times before lying down."
    -- Robert Benchley

  4. "Did you ever notice when you blow in a dog's face he gets mad at you? But when you take him in a car he sticks his head out the window."
    -- Steve Bluestone

  5. "A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent."
    --John Calvin

  6. "I think we are drawn to dogs because they are the uninhibited creatures we might be if we weren't certain we knew better."
    -- George Bird Evans

  7. "Old age means realizing you will never own all the dogs you wanted to."
    --Joe Gores

  8. "To his dog, every man is Napoleon. Hence the constant popularity of dogs."
    --Aldous Huxley

  9. "When the old dog barks it is time to watch."
    -- Latin Proverb

  10. "If you are a dog and your owner suggests that you wear a sweater. .. . suggest that he wear a tail."
    -- Fran Lebowitz

  11. "Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside a dog, it's too dark to read."
    -- Groucho Marx

  12. "Did you ever walk into a room and forget why you walked in? I think that's how dogs spend their lives."
    --Sue Murphy

  13. "It's funny how dogs and cats know the inside of folks better than other folks do, isn't it?"
    --Eleanor H. Porter

  14. "I think dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love. For me they are the role model for being alive."
    --Gilda Radner

  15. "It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog."
    -- Mark Twain

  16. "The more I know about people, the better I like my dog."
    -- Mark Twain

  17. "If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man."
    --Mark Twain

  18. "Dogs believe they are human. Cats believe they are God."--

  19. "The dog is the only being that loves you more than you love yourself."
    --Fritz von Unruh

  20. "If a dog jumps in your lap, it is because he is fond of you; but if a cat does the same thing, it is because your lap is warmer."
    --Alfred North Whitehead

Resource Box - © Danielle Hollister (2004) is the Publisher of BellaOnline Quotations Zine - A free newsletter for quote lovers featuring more than 10,000 quotations in dozens of categories like - love, friendship, children, inspiration, success, wisdom, family, life, and many more. Read it online at -

The Joy of Domestic Cats

So why do you want to own a cat or even in some cases be owned by a cat?

If you are going to care for your cat properly it will mean you will have to find time to feed and groom it, change litter and let it in and out of your home. You will need to arrange for its care whilst you are away and you will have to find money for food, litter and veterinary expenses.

Cats are wonderful pets and companions and having one in your home can be a joy for you and all your family. Choose your cat wisely and prepare for an addition to your family.

Domestic cat owners often remain cat owners and often would be unable to see their lives complete without at least one feline living within their home.

To devoted owners caring for their cat will be no chore or a series of tedious everyday tasks instead it will be time lovingly given to an affectionate living animal. The affection that can be given by your cat rubbed up against your leg can make keeping and looking after your cat a special part of your life.

Caring for your cat does not demand exercise and since the domestic cat is basically a small creature their living areas pose not too much of a consideration but having said that your house should be big enough to allow the cat room to dwell.

Although cheap to acquire and cheap to own in monetary terms a cat can be worth its weight in gold to a new owner, providing amusement, love and companionship. The elderly will find owning a cat very beneficial as it will provide undemanding companionship and can be very easily cared for. Children will learn a lot by having a cat as a pet to care for and will appreciate the amusement and affection that a cat can give. Under parent's guidance, a child can quickly learn to become a responsible pet owner.

Once you have decided that a cat will add to your enjoyment of life and that you can properly devote time and affection to its upkeep and well being you can begin to study the many and varied possibilities the world of a cat has to offer.

For more extensive advice and information on owning your own domestic cat including choosing your cat, tips on training the cat, grooming, feeding and nutrition visit

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Cat Sitter Tips


There will be times in your life when you have to leave home, and you can't always take your cat with you, no matter how well behaved he or she may be. If you must travel out of town, make sure that your cat's health will be in good hands while you are gone. You'll need a cat sitter. Make sure that you leave the sitter with as much information about your cats as possible so that you can rest assured that they are safe and healthy.

In the best-case scenario, your cat sitter will be someone you already know. Neighborhood teens make good cat sitters, as do relatives. You can also call a pet sitting company if you don't have anyone else in mind. Whoever takes care of your cats, make sure they are trustworthy and will show up at your house every single day at the correct times. If you have multiple cats or other pets, or if you will be gone for over a week, it may be a good idea to have someone you trust house sit and stay overnight in your home.

Before you leave, create an easy-to-read sheet of important information. Start by listing your cats-include their names, fur color, special diet and medications, likes and dislikes, and favorite hiding places. You should also include step-by-step detailed instructions for cat care and the numbers for you and for your vet. Also, notify your vet the name of the person who will be bringing your pet in for emergency care.

Make sure that everything needed to care for your cat is out in the open and easy to use. For example, don't forget to leave a can opener out for your cat sitter! If any of your cats fall ill or are injured, your cat sitter will need to call a vet and possibly even take your cat to the vet's office. Have the phone in an easy-to-locate place and leave cat carriers by the door. Also make sure that all cleaning supplies are easy for your cat sitter to find, including litter box materials.

If any of your cats need vet care, you will have to pay the vet bills, of course. Leave a $20 bill (or more if you'll be gone longer) for your cat sitter to specifically be used for the cats. Call your vet to alert him or her that you will be out of town. Give your vet your credit card number, the phone number where you can be reached, and the name of your cat sitter, with the assertion that he or she will act in your place until you return home.

Following these guidelines, you will be able to enjoy your vacation and know that your precious babies are being well taken care of.

Florence Lilly writes articles on a variety of subjects, including health and fitness, money advice, dating tips, animals and pets, medical advice, crafts and hobbies, real estate and travel. She also owns a website where you can find products and software you can really use. For more information, go to her website at:

Housebreaking Your Puppy - Good Puppy, Good Dog

By Michael Russell

No, no, no! A puppy's life! "No", frequently the first word that comes to your mind when she looks up at you and starts tearing up the paper…or squats! But should it be? After all, tearing up paper is fun, going potty when the urge hits is natural…regardless of where. Don't simply reprimand the puppy for doing what comes naturally; take some training steps to change the behavior. A well-trained puppy makes a good dog.

Training should start as soon as you bring a new puppy into your home. Why let her learn bad habits that you will have to change later? Training doesn't need to be a struggle, but the more diligent you are; the shorter the training period will be. Basic to training, when a puppy is doing something it should not be doing in order to be a good citizen of its environment, redirect her activity and praise the new good behavior. Train yourself to recognize the "I've got to potty!" signs. She may suddenly start to run in circles or start sniffing the floor or, later in the training, run toward the door. She may even just give you the look. You'll get to know it!

When not interacting directly with the puppy and/or not being able to supervise her closely, she should be crated or confined to a small area (small relative to her size). Baby gates work well for this. Whenever the puppy whines first assume she has to go to the bathroom and take her outside…rain, shine, sleet or snow. Stay close, preferably with the puppy on a leash, so that you can offer praise immediately while she potties. Using a leash more easily allows you to, with a gentle tug, regain the attention of an easily distracted puppy and to establish a specific area of the yard for elimination. Praise must come immediately, not after the fact, so that she relates praise to going potty outside. Teach the puppy "outside?" and the language of elimination…"go potty" or "do thing", "do other thing", whatever terminology you wish to use; just keep it consistent and be sure everyone in the family uses the same commands and tone. Soon she will pair "outside?" and elimination. The goal is to get the puppy to eliminate on command. If a puppy is not yet used to a leash, put the leash on and carry her outside to the elimination area saying, "go outside" along the way. Put the puppy down and then switch to your command for elimination. Go inside immediately after the job is done so that she knows the phrase "outside" is for a specific purpose and was not for play. When the purpose is for play, use a different term.

Before and after playtime or walk time…any change of activity, take the puppy out to potty. Also, take her out within a half hour after eating.

A word about crates: Using a crate will allow house training to proceed more easily. Puppies usually do not want to eliminate where they sleep. For that reason the crate should be just large enough to stand up, turn around and lie down. Any larger and she will eliminate at one end and sleep at the other. Eventually, she will lose the instinct to not mess in her bed area and start spreading it around. You can purchase crates large enough for the grown dog with a divider panel and size it for the puppy.

A puppy should not be crated more than 2 hours without a potty break until she is at least 3 months old. Then you can start adding up to an hour each month until she is 6-8 months. You will begin to see what time pattern is best for your puppy. Just before placing the puppy in the crate and immediately after removing her, you should take her outside to potty.

Immediately after going outside successfully is a good time to allow the puppy some freedom. (If the puppy did not potty while outside replace her into the crate and try again in a few minutes.) This is when the baby gate comes in handy. You can allow some freedom while keeping her somewhat confined, safe and out of trouble.

Want a chance at a full night's sleep? Take up the water supply about 2 to 3 hours before your bedtime and potty the puppy just before you retire for the night.

Remember, accidents will happen during the training period. All is not lost. To correct this behavior, she must be caught in the act. If you don't catch her in the act, don't try to correct her after the fact. When caught, use voice tone to let her know that this is unacceptable behavior, say in a firm voice (not an angry voice) "Augh, augh. Potty outside"; then change to an encouraging voice tone and say "Go outside". Take her out on her leash to her potty area. Give her praise for finishing outside.

Establishing this new habit of going outside to potty could take 2 to 3 months, but will get better as time goes on. The number of accidents will decrease, the puppy will respond more and more often to your commands to eliminate and she will more and more frequently ask to go out. Be sure you are attuned to how she asks and respond quickly.

By the way, do you have an older dog that is starting to have accidents in the house? After being sure that there is no illness, backtrack on the housebreaking routine. A little refresher course should correct the problem quickly.

You'll notice that paper training is pretty much ignored here. That is basically because it is an extra step which can be confusing for the puppy: first you train her to go to the bathroom in the house by placing her on the paper or specially treated puppy training pads when you discern that she needs to go and then you turn around and teach her to not go in the house by moving the paper closer and closer toward the door, eventually taking the puppy and the paper outside. Then you have to eliminate the paper altogether. It is best to start with the crate and outside training from the start unless your circumstances absolutely do not allow it. An additional benefit of crate training over paper training is that the puppy learns that she can hold it when the urge first hits.

Michael Russell Your Independent guide to Dog Training

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