Saturday, April 14, 2007

Lily - Beautiful Yet Poisonous To Cats

The below is an article that I stumbled accross just minutes ago when I was visiting the CFA website. If you were to read carefully, you will realise that this article was featured before Easter but since I believe that many more of us out there are still ignorant of the effects of the beautiful Lilies to our cats, I've decided to include this article in my blog. Do read on and hopefully we shall all benefit from it.

In 2006, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center managed hundreds of cases involving lilies.

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center and the Cat Fanciers' Association warns cat owners: Easter Lilies can be deadly for your cat!!!

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center and The Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA) are again warning cat owners about the dangers of Easter lilies and other variations in the lily family. "Easter lily (Lilium longiflorum), Tiger lily (Lilium tigrinum), Rubrum lily (Lilium speciosum), Japanese show lily (Lilium lancifolium) and some species of the Day lily (Hemerocallis species) can cause kidney failure in cats," says Dr. Sharon Gwaltney-Brant, Veterinary Toxicologist at the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. "Unfortunately, all parts of the lily plant are considered toxic to cats and consuming even small amounts can be life threatening." Within only a few hours of ingestion of the lily plant, a cat may vomit, become lethargic or develop a lack of appetite. These signs continue and worsen as kidney damage progresses. Without prompt and proper treatment by a veterinarian, the cat may develop kidney failure in 36 to 72 hours. Cat owners should remove lilies from their cat's access and are encouraged to consider safer alternatives such as Easter orchids, Easter cactus, Easter daisies or violets. The Cat Fanciers' Association has partnered with the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center to help raise awareness among cat owners nationally about the dangers of toxic plants as well as offering safe alternatives. According to Allene Tartaglia, Executive Director of the Cat Fanciers' Association, "Part of being a responsible pet owner is to educate yourself on the many different health issues facing your pet. Removing dangerous plants from your cat's home is an important part in having safer, healthier and happier pets."

All parts of the lily plant are considered toxic to cats and consuming even small amounts can be life threatening.

To help educate cat owners about the dangers of lilies and other plants, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center and CFA have developed online materials including photos of common types of dangerous lilies and a list of non-toxic plants. To download the materials visit or

Choosing The Right Cat

For one who is totally new to the idea of getting a cat, I encourage you to at least do a search on all the different breeds available in the market. Ask yourself an honest question on how time you can spend on grooming a cat. Will you be able to spare an hour a day or just an hour a week. The answer to this will help you to determine whether you can get a long coated or a short coated cat. Also look at your family background. Does anyone suffers from asthmatic problems? If yes, then re-evaluate whether is it a wise decision to get a pet cat. Are you willing to share your entire household with your pet cat? If yes, be prepared to have cat fur on your chair, blanket and even on your pillows as your pet cat will make himself comfortable among your stuffs the moment he gets familiar with his new environment.

What type of cat is trainable? Not all cats are trainable and some of them are not easy to train. It's all depends on how much hard work you are willing to put in, how persistent are you with the training sessions and how patient are you with your new cat (bear in mind that they can act very aloof towards you or even ignore you totally if they want to). Once you have finally decided that a cat is what you want, take a look at the different breeds that are available in the market. Do bear in mind that it is good to do your part by visitting the local shelter to adopt a cat instead of buying one from the pet shop. Nevertheless, if none of the cats there catches your heart, here is a list of cat breeds and a brief summary of them. It is my sincere wish that you will find the following useful in your quest for finding that special cat in your life.

Barman: long hair, easy to manage, once a week grooming,loves humans, gentle, affectionate, inquisitive will follow you around the house, very clever.

Siamese: verbal, loving, can be difficult, serious daily play, needs intelligent plays and contact to arouse and keep an active mental status, and does not like to be
left alone.

Snowshoe: An uncommon breed of cat warm, playful, great personality enjoys the indoor living.

Somali: Is a very intelligent, playful, active, extreme elegant grace and very alert. This type of cat can be gentle, loyal, sensitive, sense of humor cat. Has minimum care for grooming, loves to play, loves water, and loves to be next to you or in the lap napping. Will capture your heart.

Pixie-Bob is very trainable. It is a bright, loyal, full family breed. The hair can be long or short.

American Bobtail is not a wild nature cat. They have an untamed look thus earning them such reputation. They come in medium to large size.

Anatolian is a mild, kind cat, elder cats might have trouble adapting to a classic pet cat life.

Bengal's are active, clever companions. The friendliest of all cat breeds, but tend to be slightly rough in play especially when he is carried away and too excited. Most pet Bengal's are wild only in looks, not in character.

Ocicat: looks like a small wild spotted cat, fully household, energetic, effectionate and very public despite their wild look. They are gracious, sociable, people-oriented cats without being clingy or intolerable. They are clever, dedicated, extremely
adaptable companions.

The most familiar and easily well-known cat is the Persian. This well-known cat is available in a broad range of colors and patterns. A Persian are known for quiet mild temper and a loving cat. Although easygoing, they are playful in their own way. Their long hair mats simply. General daily grooming is required, at least 20 minutes per
day, with a one-hour grooming weekly to keep the hair in good condition.

Selkirk Rex is an enduring, broadminded, affectionate cat that enjoys a good embrace It is not a good choice for someone with cat sensitivity as the shedding undercoat tends to be heavier in this breed.

Rag doll; is finest acknowledged for its quiet and easygoing nature. Perhaps it is the gentlest and mainly laid-back of breed is biggest fully house breed of cat. Their long hair needs minimum care. Exotic; it is a passive, mild cat with a yielding tone. A thoughtful cat enjoys sitting on laps and likes comforts of home. The grooming
needs to be done each day with a weekly grooming at least for an hour.

Sphinx; is a contented friendly cat. A huge outgoing, aware, and very inquisitive cat, enjoys the company of humans and other pets. Their skin feels like warm, soft suede, and does need grooming although not very often.

This is a list of some cats with some traits to help you look for that special cat in your life. There are many different breeds of cats to choose from. Choosing one that is right for you and your family can be a fun experience.

lastly, do not forget to check out the internet and books for the different breed of cats. After you have done a research on the different breeds, you might want to consider visiting a humane society or shelter nearest to you. This can give you an idea of the some of the cats that may be looking for.

It is hard to find the right cat that can fit into all your basic requirements but once you do, you will be the happiest man alive. Cats have different personalities and traits, some need a lot of attention, and some will need a lot of grooming. With this and other factors about cats will be important to you and your family to be able to have as a friend and train.

Looking for that breed for you and your family will also be a great family project. Making this a great family project will help the cat and family adjust to each other better. Have fun, I did!

Friday, April 13, 2007

Benefits Of Having A Pet

Dogs and cats hold a very special place in the hearts of millions in this world.
Dogs and owners can do so much together - go for walks, play games or simply share a quiet snooze in the sun. As for cats and their owners, both enjoy an unspeakable bond that gives so much contentment when the owner and the cat plays together. Research has also shown that owning a pet can have measurable health benefits.International research has shown that adults and children are more relaxed in the presence of a friendly dog or cat and that pet owners suffer less minor health problems such as headaches, backaches, colds and flue, insomnia and general tiredness than non pet owners.

Medical research in Australia has found that pet owners have a lower risk of heart attack, having lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure and lower triglyceride fats in their blood than non pet owners.

When obtaining a dog or cat, a particular attention should be paid to the type or breed of the animal with respect to the size of your yard, the amount of exercise the dog will receive and the amount of time available for grooming (in the case of long haired dogs and cats).

Nevertheless, be rest assured that your four legged friend with provide you with everlasting devotion. No matter how bad you look in the morning, your pet will always greet you with a lick on the face or a rub at your legs. No matter how much you smell, they will still love you the same. If only humans can behave more like them...

A Myth Busted!

When I was young and innocent, I normally believed what others told me. Stories of how a dog normally tear a cat to pieces were told over and over by so many adults until I lost count. This myth stayed with me until a few months ago when I decided to embark on a new change of life. I quit my job and decided to take up a dog grooming course. Upon taking up the course, it is only natural that I get a dog of my own. I hesitated initially as I was living with two male cats, my 16year old American shorthaired mix, Ah Boy, and my 3 years old rescued black stray who goes by the name, Sirius Black.

Unfortunately I was not given the opportunity to dwell long on my decision as my little brother Raymond Sern called up with news that there's a Silky Terrier up for adoption and in need of a good home fast. Without thinking I quickly gave him my consent to take the dog home.

The lucky dog, Ms. Phoebe Cates, started to explore the house carefully as it was surrounded by cat smell. I was always by her side to rescue her if the need arise. At that time, both the male cats were up on the dining table looking at Phoebe curiously exploring her new environment. Then, Ah Boy did the un-thinkable, he jumped down beside Phoebe, gave her a hiss (at this time I was already on my kness holding on to Phoebe who is much smaller than Ah Boy eventhough she is a full grown bitch of 2 years old), then started to smell her all over. Bear in mind that I was holding my breath all these while... Ah Boy then decided that Phoebe will never pose a threat to his Kingdom hood, turned around and just walk away. I congratulated Phoebe on her coolness towards the whole incident. She didn't bark nor tried to snap at Ah Boy thus earning his trust as a loyal friend from then on. Thus a MYTH busted!

Who said that cats and dogs cannot see eye to eye? Who ever came up with such notion that they are sworn enemies? I have a friend who is a vet by profession and she has 2 dogs, 1 cat, a bird and fishes all living together in perfect harmony. As for myself, I'm proud to say that both Ah Boy and Ms Phoebe Cates are willing to take turns sleeping on my feet whenever I'm sitted down to do my work at the PC (you can actually see this in one of the photos featured). My darling Sirius Black has also developed a strong liking to Aragorn, the Papillion and is always trying to look after him especially when he sleeps. In the other photo you can see Sweetie the Shih Tzu licking Ginger Ale, another male cat.

The trick is treat everyone equally. If you already have one cat and is thinking of getting a dog to add on to the happy family, get a friend or a family member to help you with the initial introduction. Hold each of them comfortably in your hands and bring them to face each other at a respected distance. If there is no hostility coming from them both, move closer to each other while talking to them in a very soft manner encouraging them to get to know each other. Praise them is they do not show any hostility and scold them in a stern manner if they show any dislike by either barking or yeolling. Hold them in this position slightly longer so then they can get to smell each other. After that, let them go and repeat the same a few more times for a few days until they are totally comfortable with each other.

Animals of any kind are naturally born very curious to get to know any new addition to the family. I am very sure that in no time both your cat and dog will end up playmates vying for that special spot on your lap. On the other hand do be careful especially if any of them show instant dislike or hostility towards the other. Cats have known to be extra fast when it comes to swiping with their claws and dogs can be fast if they decide that they want to bite something. So be on your guard at all times. Make sure that you are around when the initial introduction takes place. Your presence not only calms down the pet, you are also in the position to stop any unfavourable accident from happening. Happy interacting!

How Could You

The 1st time I heard about this was from my grooming teacher, Ms Annie Goh. She told me of it verbally and at the end of the story, the two of us ended up with tears in our eyes. I then made it my goal to extract the full version of it from the net and after months of searching, I finally found it when I was browing through yet another dog website. My aim is for each and everyone of us to truly understand the responsibility of having a pet. They are not toys that can be discarded at any time, but, a living thing created by God just like us. So think twice before you decide to embark on the wonderful journey of pet ownership. Try to put yourself in their shoes. If you do not know how, it's simple, just read on.....

When I was a puppy, I entertained you with my antics and made you laugh. You called me your child, and despite a number of chewed shoes and a couple of murdered throw pillows, I became your best friend. Whenever I was "bad", you'd shake your finger at me and ask "how could you?" But then you'd relent, and roll me over for a belly rub. My housebreaking took a little longer than expected, because you were terribly busy, but we worked on that together. I remember those nights of nuzzling you in bed and listening to your confidences and secret dreams, and I believed that life could not be anymore perfect. We went for long walks and runs in the park, car rides, stops for ice cream (I only got the cone because "ice cream is bad for dogs," you said), and I took long naps in the sun waiting for you to come home at the end of the day. Gradually, you began spending more time at work and on your career, and more time searching for a human mate. I waited for you patiently, comforted you through heartbreaks and disappointments, never chided you about bad decisions, and romped with glee at your homecomings, and when you fell in love. She, now your wife, is not a "dog person" still I welcomed her into our home, tried to show her affection, and obeyed her. I was happy because you were happy. Then the human babies came along and I shared your excitement. I was fascinated by their pinkness, how they smelled, and I wanted to mother them too. Only she and you worried that I might hurt them, and I spent most of my time banished to another room, or to a dog crate. Oh, how I wanted to love them, but I became a "prisoner of love". As they began to grow, I became their friend. They clung to my fur and pulled themselves up on wobbly legs, poked fingers in my eyes, investigated my ears, and gave me kisses on my nose. I loved everything about them and their touch-- because your touch was now so infrequent--and I would have defended them with my life if need be. I would sneak into their beds and listen to their worries and secret dreams, and together we waited for the sound of your car in the driveway. There had been a time, when others asked you if you had a dog, that you produced a photo of me from your wallet and told them stories about me. These past few years, you just answered "yes" and changed the subject. I had gone from being "your dog" to "just a dog," and you resented every expenditure on my behalf. Now, you have a new career opportunity in another city, and you and they will be moving to an apartment that does not allow pets. You've made the right decision for your "family," but there was a time when I was your only family. I was excited about the car ride until we arrived at the animal shelter. It smelled of dogs and cats, of fear, of hopelessness. You filled out the paperwork and said "I know you will find a good home for her." They shrugged and gave you a pained look. They understood the realities facing a middle-aged dog, even one with "papers." You had to prise your son's fingers loose from my collar as he screamed "No Daddy! Please don't let them take my dog!" And I worried for him, and what lessons you had just taught him about friendship and loyalty, about love and responsibility, and about respect for all life. You gave me a good-bye pat on the head, avoided my eyes, and politely refused to take my collar and leash with you. You had a deadline to meet and now I have one, too. After you left, the two nice ladies said you probably knew about your upcoming move months ago and made no attempt to find me another good home. They shook their heads and asked "How could you?" They are as attentive to us here in the shelter as their busy schedules allow. They feed us, of course, but I lost my appetite days ago. At first, whenever anyone passed my pen, I rushed to the front, hoping it was you, that you had changed your mind -- that this was all a bad dream...or I hoped it would at least be someone who cared, anyone who might save me. When I realised I could not compete with the frolicking for attention of happy puppies, oblivious to their own fate. I retreated to a far corner and waited. I heard her footsteps as she came for me at the end of the day, and I padded along the aisle after her to a seperate room. A blissfully quiet room. she placed me on the table and rubbed my ears, and told me not to worry. My heart pounded in anticipation of what was to come, but there was also a sense of relief. The prisoner of love had run out of days. As is my nature, I was more concerned about her. The burden which she bears weighs heavily on her, and I know that, the same way I knew your every mood. She gently placed a tourniquet around my foreleg as a tear ran down her cheek. I licked her hand in the same way I used to comfort you so many years ago. She expertly slid the hypodermic needle into my vein. As I felt the sting and the cool liquid coursing through my body, I lay down sleepily, looked into her kind eyes and murmured "How could you?" Perhaps because she understood my dogspeak, she said "I'm so sorry." She hugged me, and hurriedly explained that it was her job to make sure I went to a better place, where I wouldn't be ignored or abused or abandoned, or have to fend for myself -- a place of love and light so very different from this earthly place. And with my last bit of energy, I tried to convey to her with a thump of my tail that my "How could you?" was not directed at her. It was you, My Beloved Master, I was thinking of. I will think of you and wait for you forever.
May everyone in your life continue to show you so much loyalty.

You Touch My Heart - Meredith Johnson-Snyder of Rattlebridge Cavalier

Yesterday as I was browsing through the dog websites available on the net, I stumbled accross one that struck me as truly amazing. The writer is not only a dog lover, she and her husband breeds and even maintain to upheld the strict standard of judging in the show competition. It is a great pleasure to introduce you to Meredith Johnson-Snyder of Rattlebridge Cavalier, a lady who is to me comparable to Mother Theresa in the kingdom of Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. Take a tour to her website, and I can assure you that you will be touched by her dedication and devotion. As a person who truly believes in what she does, Meredith is THE person who has managed to awed me just through her writings. I wonder whether I can ever become like her someday. Posted here is our own Ruby Cavalier registered under Drunasty Kennel, back in Malaysia. One day when our finances are more established, we will try to embark on a breeding program with Rattlebridge. Till that day comes, it is now worth to just day dream hoping for such a happy occasion to come true. Have a great day.

A Quick Hello

Greetings to all animal lovers. I'm very blessed to be able to jot down my journey and spread the love for animals that I have in me to all who share the same sentiments as I do. Do drop by for a visit often and I shall try my very best to make your each and every stop a very worthwhile one. Till we meet again, take care & God bless.

Pretty Paws and Doggie Ribbons

A blog dedicated to all animal lovers out there! This is THE place that will open your world towards a wide range of articles and information related to the pet grooming industry as well as animal breeding!

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