TheFinestWriter.com Pet Blog

True Animal Lover Blog (un-edited / un-proofread articles)

dog  training collar 

A friend told me that my dog collars were "useless". I asked him why. He said that it did not do anything to train my dogs. He then recounted how his other friend had "great" training collars that taught the dog not to bark too much, or not to pull on a leash.

Dog training collars have cropped up everywhere. There are different kinds of collars that are generally available at pet stores. One of these is the prong collar, which looks like a medieval and primitive torture device for dogs. Basically, it is a collar with spikes. These spikes and prongs press on your dog’s neck making it stop whatever it is doing. Prong collar manufacturers swear that the pressure is applied mildly and will not hurt the dog.

However, prong collars are recommended only for bigger dogs with thick necks, and definitely not for smaller ones who constantly yank on the leash. It should not be worn regularly and is only considered as a correction tool.

To avoid injuring your dog, it should be fitted perfectly because incorrect use will do your dog more harm than good.

Another training collar is the choke chain. It is what its name says it is; it chokes your dog. Pet owners who use the choke chain have reported extensive neck and trachea injuries in their dogs.

Both are horrible and ghastly pieces of training devices for me. I will not use them on my furry friends, nor will I recommend their use to anybody.

There is however some training collars which are more acceptable and safer. One is called the Gentle Leader, which looks like a muzzle that sits behind your dog’s ears and is connected by two nylon straps. You control the dog by controlling his nose. Another one is called the halti, which basically follows the same principles. The Gentle Leader has been known to be more effective for dog training purposes.

For me pet collars are a way of controlling your dog, not train them. If you want to train your dog to behave properly, I suggest you get a lot of treats and pet them or praise them for a job well done. It might be more laborious, but it is generally much more humane.

Dog clothing does not have to be tacky, that if it were made into human sized clothing, you would be ashamed to wear it. In recent years, we have seen celebrity pets like Tinkerbell don stylish dog clothing that matches the elegance of her owner, Paris Hilton. While you can certainly opt for designer dog clothing made by Ralph Lauren and Louis Vuitton, you need not have to put up with the outrageous prices if it is not within your budget. So, do you want to have a stylish dog and not bore a hole in your pockets? Read on as we continue with our list of fashionable and timeless dog clothing designs.

The Bikini

If you think sports jackets are the only athletic clothing you can buy for your furry friends, think again. If you are going to the beach, or if it’s unbearably hot outside, you can treat your pet to a bikini walk. Wonderful designs in bright colors always do the trick.

The Baby Dress

If you have a female dog, you are in luck. One of the most fascinating and cutest dog clothing available is the baby dress. Imagine a dress without the sleeves, and that’s basically what a baby dress is. More than colors and designs, you can mix and match baby dresses with your favorite cartoon character, ribbons, flowers, laces, and other stuff you can think of. You can even order a matching head band to make sure that your dog is dressed to the hilt from head to toe!

The Tee Shirt

The tee shirt is probably the best and most timeless. This is especially true if you got a male dog, or if you find ribbons and laces too girly or too fussy. A simple tee shirt that is made to fit your dog will do the trick in making it more stylish.

Getting the right fit: Making it snug and stylish

All the designs in the world would be useless if the clothing you buy falls right off your dog. Remember that not all dogs have the same. Some dogs may have an XS fit for the body, but their necks might be a little bigger. So make sure that you get a snug fit by taking your dog’s measurements. These are the rules:

  • Length: measure from the base of the neck to end of back or beginning of tail
  • Neck: measure where the collar sits
  • Girth: measure around the largest part of the chest

For most dog lovers, dog clothing is not only a way to boost up their dog’s cool factor; dog clothing also protects their dogs from the elements.

There are styles that are perfect for certain occasions and there are those that are just not right for your dogs, no matter what the season.

True Animal Lover presents its list of the best dog clothing designs that are both fashionable and timeless. They are making sure that your dog stays protected, cool and cute no matter what the season or time of the year it is.

Dog robes — Dog robes are an essential especially if you take your dog outside for a walk or a workout. In rainy seasons, jogging trails and parks are wet. Just put on the dog robe and you’d be sure to protect your dog from the cold! What’s more, dog robes are very easy to put on and take off. Most dog robes use Velcro as fasteners, making it easier for you to latch it on without too much hassle.

If your dogs have wounds and you apply ointments to these. That will make sure that the ointment stays on your dog and not soil your furniture, carpet, or floor.

Most dog robes can easily be washed, will dry quickly, and have been proven to last long, so you would probably need only one or two dog robes for your pets. But of course, with the range of colors available it may be difficult to decide how many you would like to have!

Dog sports jacket — For sporty dogs, get a beautifully designed sports jacket. A quality sports jacket will not only make your dog look ubercool and athletic, but it also protects them more than a dog robe does. Get something that is made with lycra and spandex but be sure that the sports jacket you buy is highly breathable. That way, your dog will stay warm but not overheat. Most dog sports jackets are very durable and you can have it customized for your dog. Like dog robes, there are sports jackets available that have Velcro fasteners, making it easier for you to put it on your dog!

Dog sports jackets also come in a variety of colors (yellow, red, blue, green, etc.) and designs (wrap-around, custom fit, etc.) and are made of different materials (fleece, velco, nylon, polyester, lycra, spandex, etc.). As stated above, do make sure that your dog is comfortable!

Bee Propolis

For years, humankind has been receiving a lot of benefits from bees. From pollination to food, bees have proven to be beneficial to us. Aside from honey, one of the better known foods from bees is bee propolis or what is commonly known as royal jelly.

Used primarily by bees to fortify their hives, seal smaller cracks, prevent diseases, parasites and other animals from entering their hives, bee propolis have been known to prevent putrefaction of whatever dead foreign body is found within the hives. If a larger animal dies within the hive and the bees are unable to carry it out and away of their hives, they cover the carcass with royal jelly. This mummifies it, thus making it odorless and harmless.

Bee propolis is made by the bees from botanical sources like tree buds and saps. It has been touted to have medicinal properties and is thought to be beneficial to human health. A lot of traditional medicine practitioners have used bee propolis to treat and relieve infections, cataracts, ulcers, viral diseases, slight burns. It is also said to be able to strengthen the heart and the immune system. What’s more, it is said that the bee propolis makes a good antibiotic and antifungal, and can help you prevent allergies and cancer.

Bee PropolisPhoto courtesy of http://smojoe.com/blog/2009/08/bee-propolis-for-sale-product-of-ontario

It is difficult to determine just what comprises bee propolis. Aside from having a very complex chemical structure with more than 200 components, bee propolis varies in composition depending on where it was obtained, the season in which it was manufactured and what vegetation, trees and flowers are nearby. However, bee propolis is often rich in vitamins B-complex, C, E and pro-vitamin A. It also has minerals like calcium, iron, zinc, silica, potassium, copper, and magnesium among other things.

Pet owners now have another thing to be thankful for the existence of bees. Bee propolis has been shown to be a good natural supplement that is great at preventing cancer, inflammation, and tumors even in animals and pets. It hinders the production of T-cells, which is responsible for a lot of inflammatory diseases. These properties make it an effective safeguard from cancer, tumors and inflammation.

Lastly, bee propolis as a natural medication for your pets is safe. There are no reported side effects aside from allergies (usually acquired by people who are also allergic to bees and beestings).

Let me tell you about my "sponsor", AnimalStars.com. Actually, sponsor may not be the right word to describe them, but I do get some nifty pet products from time to time and great discounts on the things I purchase from them.

I first came to know about AnimalStars.com in mid 2008 when I was looking for a dog tag for one of my malteepoos, Penny. I ordered the tag from them and had it customized. I was pretty impressed with the guy whom I spoke with. These guys sure knew what they are doing and what they are talking about.

Three days later, a perfectly beautiful tag arrived at my doorstep. It was beautiful and it exceeded my expectations. The workmanship is great and the tags looked much more valuable.

I have been a constant returning and happy customer since then. Over time, I go to AnimalStars.com first before I search the Internet, and only if they do not carry the product I need.

I do not know these guys personally but I have talked to them over the phone, and have e-mailed them lots of times. I get a lot of free tips on how to train my dogs, how to treat a sick pet, or what the latest pet fashion is. I have also developed a keen sense of family with some of them.

I believe that people who love animals have this certain connection; like sharing a special secret or something.

I believe that this is what makes their products stand out. Because they are animal lovers themselves, they only want what is best for your own pet. They go for all-natural products because these are most likely safer than artificial ones. For the products that they make themselves, you could see that each work is a labor of love. Collar, pendant, and ID tag have been crafted excellently.

Believe me, it shows in each product that I have received from them. In fact, I have been known to wear some of my dogs’ collars myself! That is how exquisitely beautiful they are!

For those who are really running really low and are on a tight budget, here are even more inexpensive gift ideas for pet lovers:

Glamour Photos. If you have the talent for photography, you might want to take some really cool shots of your friends’ pets and frame it. They would appreciate the chance to see their pets all dressed up, looking cute and immortalized on photo paper!

DIY Gifts. There are a lot of things you could do to help out a pet owner. For one, you can give their pets a bath every Saturday morning. You may offer to walk the dogs of your significant other for free for a month.

If you know how to knit or sew, you can give them a knitted jacket for their dogs, for example; or perhaps a nice pink dress for their cats that you made yourself. If they are going on vacation, you can volunteer to look after their petsTo make it more fun, you can probably make some sort of “gift coupons” for these free chores and give it to your friends for them to redeem at a later time. That way, he or she would not see it as freeloading on his or her part, but making use of your gift. If you have some loose rhinestones lying around, you can glue these rhinestones to the pet’s collar for added spunk and attitude! No rhinestones? You may use buttons, crystals and beads—the possibilities are seemingly endless.

Pet ID Tags. ID tags are not only frivolous gifts. It is actually very useful. There are many ID tags that would fit your budget. In fact, there are stainless steel ID tags that go for a low as $9.95, while brass and nickel silver ID tags are available for less than $50. ID tags are customizable, fashionable and eye-catching. You could have your friends’ pets’ names, and your friends’ contact information engraved into the tag. In the event that the pet gets lost, those who find them will have a way to locate its owner and return it.

So you see, showing your friends how much you appreciate them does not really have to be very expensive to be memorable and useful. All it takes is taking time out to see what your friend really needs and do what comes natural for a friend: be there for him or her. These ideas are guaranteed to be highly appreciated and remembered for years to come!

The global financial crisis is now more palpable than ever. Some people find themselves suddenly unemployed while others are still looking for jobs or other ways just to get by. If your best friend is having his or her birthday really soon, would you still be able to stretch out your budget just to get that special someone a gift?

Yes you can if he or she is a pet owner or an animal lover. Here are some gift ideas that any pet owner would appreciate but will keep your wallet safe:

Gift Certificates to Pet-Related Products and Services.

While your friends might adore their furry friends, sometimes they might find themselves having no spare time to take care of their pet’s grooming needs. You could give them gift certificates for pet salon services, where your friend’s pet can enjoy services like shampooing, cutting, manicure, and pet massage. Show your friend that you care by giving their pet royal treatment even just for a day. You may also have the option to give their owners gift certificates to obedience trainers, veterinary clinics, boarding facilities, and pet daycares.

Pet Clothes. Pet clothes are getting more and more popular these days, thus the increased variety in terms of designs, cuts and colors. Pet fashion at its best does not necessarily mean it will cost you an arm and a leg. There is designer pet clothing that costs below $100. Some have seasonal themes (want your dog to don a Santa outfit during Christmas?) and you can also have these customized. Just a word of advice though: be sure to measure your friends’ pet first before you order and save them the hassle of having to pay shipping for returning or exchanging the product.

Pet Carriers. Pet carriers these days are no longer just portable pet cages. There are a lot of options to choose from and definitely each has its own style, color and design! You can now select pet pouches, tote bags, and even comfy pet beds! Because pets and their owners are often inseparable you can give this gift to your friends. For only a little over $100, these carriers last a long time and is very beneficial to both your friends and their pets!

They say that over time, pet owners slowly start to resemble their pets (or is it in fact the other way around?) To prove this, I am sure that you have already seen a couple of Internet jokes making the e-mail rounds that feature people and pets who too much like each other. For some it is a nice joke and, admittedly, it is funny, but as a pet lover, we understand how it feels like to identify with your pets.

You do not have to go to the extremes, however. Frankly, I would probably be embarrassed to have my hair teased up so I would resemble my favorite maltepoo.

In a previous post, we have talked about creating an ankle bracelet using cat bells. That way, if you have bought a cat bell for your cat, you can easily match your bracelet to match you cat’s accessories.

Aside from creating cat bell ankle bracelets to match your cat’s bells, here are some other ways you could identify with your pets and show the world just how much you love them.

Pet clothing — Over the years, pet clothing have become more and more fashionable that even humans would want to wear a shirt with the same design as his or her dog’s. Pet clothing nowadays do not just come in various designs, they are also available in a whole spectrum of colors and in just every imaginable material. It really is easy to wear a similar shirt, or at least wear matching colors with your pet.

Pet jewelry–The DIY ankle bracelet is one example. Dog tags are another. I have a friend who wears a dog tag that says "I belong to Police" her pet chihuahua’s name and Police had a similar tag that says "Amber belongs to me".

If you do not feel like wearing dog tags or cat bells, you can probably use the same accents. Pet collars and pet tags now have variations that feature Swarovski crystals. You can probably find human jewelry using Swarovski crystals of the same color.

There are just some ways of identifying with your pets. I am sure that there are a lot of others that you can think of. The key to matching accessories is customizing your pet’s things. This would not only ensure a perfect and comfortable fit for them, but it would also make it easier for you to find matching stuff for yourself.

Have fun!

cats in basket 

It is distressing for us pet owners to see our furry friends sick or maybe a little under the weather. If you have experienced caring for a cat with diarrhea, then you will agree that it is one of the most harrowing experiences you can have with a sick pet. Although most of the time, cat diarrhea is nothing but an upset stomach, there are times when it lasts for a long time or it recurs too often. If the latter is the case, then there is something to worry about because the diarrhea might be a symptom for a more serious disease.

Cat diarrhea is characterized by watery stools that passed frequently. Cat diarrhea may affect the small and large intestines. For diarrhea involving your cat’s small intestine, you should observe that the defecation is twice or thrice as often as normal with increasing volume. For large intestine diarrhea, the frequency is five times more than normal, but the volume is the same or is decreased. There are also signs of blood and mucous.

What I do is to make sure that the cat gets plenty of water to drink. If they do not, I always administer some Pedialyte to make sure they get to replace electrolytes they have lost. I also check if the diarrhea is caused by bacteria, and if that is the case, I give them some Azithromax Antibiotic. Azithromax has been very effective in flushing out bacteria that causes chronic diarrhea.

For small intestine diarrhea (usually, this is less serious and is usually just an upset stomach), I try to calm my cat’s stomach with some fiber and protein. I use oatmeal and Whole Life Chicken Treats. I find that my cat does not like it dry, so I soak it in a little hot water (where I also put in Pedialyte).

If these does not work, or if you are getting alarmed by your cat’s worsening diarrhea, then it is time to consult your veterinarian. Remember that cat diarrhea could be the disease itself, or a symptom for a far more serious disease. So be safe.

 

When choosing a pet carrier, keep in mind that it should be stable enough so that your pet would not be moving and jiggling around inside too much. This could cause injury to your pets. Another thing to remember is comfort. You must make sure that your pet is comfortable inside the carrier.

You should be comfortable with the carrier as well.

For smaller and lighter pets, we recommend a pooch pouch that is both beautiful and functional. I recently purchased a pooch pouch that was made of Cordura Nylon for the outside, while the inside was made of soft thick fleece. Faux fur interior materials are also available. It serves not only as a pet carrier, but a portable dog bed as well! It also acts as a pet sherpa or faux fur mat if you turn it inside out, and will protect your pet from hard surfaces.

The carrier also comes with a series of Velcro straps that instantly attaches to your car seat, making car travel convenient and safe for your pet. The Velcro straps attach the carrier to both the car seat and the seatbelt, doubling your dog’s protection.

The Velcro strap also enables you to carry your pet on your shoulder when you are shopping, biking, or visiting the vet.

As for pet owners, aching shoulders can be avoided since the shoulder strap also has a matching faux fur or sherpa lining.

For bigger pets, however, you should forget about having to carry them to wherever you go. Opt for a sturdy pet carrier that is made of hard plastic. You could opt for something that has a soft lining inside, but sturdiness is the biggest factor you should look into. You should also consider something with wheels if you plan to do a lot of walking with a heavy pet.

Lastly, choose an airline-approved pet carrier. While different airlines have different requirements for pet carriers, it is always handy to know your pet carrier’s dimensions are so that you would be sure your carrier will be allowed on board, saving you the hassle of having to buy overpriced and ugly pet carriers that a lot of airlines provide. The general rule is that smaller pets may be allowed on board using a tote pet carrier, but larger animals (usually those over 23 pounds) need pet carriers that are water-resistant, soft-sided and with enough ventilation on more than two sides.