Tag Archives: pet relax

Tips for Training Cats to Walk on Leashes

Tips for Training Cats to Walk on LeashesWhen you put a cat leash on your beloved pet, you’re bound to see their inner tiger emerge. Of course, there are a few cats who are adventurous enough to let you try this with them. Unfortunately, this is something you won’t know until you try.

Why Train Your pet to Walk on a cat Leash

Both you and your cat will benefit from him walking on a leash. He will enjoy a stimulating experience that will enrich his life. You will get to enjoy taking him on walks and getting exercise with him. Together the two of you will have a great bonding experience too.

Tips for  on a cat Leash

While this is something you can do with your cat at any age, the sooner, the better. Of course, you will need to be patient. Here are a few other tips that will help you as well:

  • Find the right harness. You want one that’ll securely wrap around your cat and stay snugly (not tightly) in place. This is why you should measure the front of his chest, middle, and behind his front legs. Don’t use a collar because this could harm his windpipe.
  • While you’re at home, slowly introduce your cat to the leash. Don’t rush to put it on him. Let him sniff and play with it. Once you do get it on him, let him move around the house and get comfortable wearing it. Make sure he can’t wiggle his way out of his harness though.
  • Don’t attach the leash to the harness right away – give your cat time to adapt. Once you do finally attach it, walk your cat around the house so he gets comfortable. Make sure you give him plenty of treats and ear scratches while doing all these things.
  • Choose a good location for your cat’s first outdoor adventure with you – somewhere safe and semi-private so he feels relaxed, secure, and confident.
  • Always take a towel with you so if something goes wrong you can quickly wrap him up and get him safely back inside.

What Happens When Leash Training Doesn’t Work

If you notice that your cat doesn’t enjoy walking on his leash with you, it may be that you need to slow down and use more incentives. While it may simply take your cat a little more time to adapt to a leash, there are some cats who never will adapt. For these cats you may enjoy being outside with them in a cat tent or a stroller instead.

Successfully Walking Your pet on a cat Leash

Now that you know how to get your pet to walk on a cat leash, you’ll want to have a vet who is available when you need them. This is why so many clients highly recommend Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Care Center. While you and your cat shouldn’t experience any problems with the adventures you undertake, it’s always nice to know that they’ll be there if you do need them.

Picture Credit: g3gg0

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How Music Affects Your Dog

How Music Affects Your DogMusic has a way of powerfully affecting both people and animals alike. It can pump us up, soothe and relax us, or give us a gentle lift. There are even studies showing how it helps Parkinson’s and stroke patients with their lost neurological deficits (e.g. verbal control). Since canines have much better hearing than humans (hearing sounds about 80 feet away), it should come as no surprise that music has an even greater effect on them.

How the Type of Music Affects Your Dog

Since dog behavior is affected by music, it’s only natural to wonder how this will vary depending on the genre. Here’s what a study in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior has found:

  • Classical music will positively affect your canine’s behavior by calming him down and soothing him. It may even put him to sleep because it will lower his heart rate and brain activity.
  • Reggae and soft rock tend to be even more calming than classical music for your pet.
  • Rock music will make your canine act even more anxious and agitated than he may already be feeling – accelerating physical signs like shaking.
  • Pop music doesn’t have much effect on your pet.

How Canines Determine Pitch

Your dog has an uncanny ability to determine a song’s pitch and tone. This is something that many musicians throughout history have found quite useful. Some notable artists who have their best four-legged friend to thank for at least part of their success include:

  • Richard Wilhelm Wagner played different melodies to his Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Peps, who’d respond by wagging his tail and barking.
  • Dr. George Robinson Sinclair played the organ at the Hereford Cathedral in London alongside his Bulldog, Dan, who’d growl at anyone who sang out of tune.
  • Composer Nurock created many performances for canines including Howl (1980), Sonata for Piano and Dog (1983), and the Expedition (1984). In each piece you’ll hear Siberian Huskies howling, barking and yipping along to the music.

How you can use Music to Help Your Pet

According to dog behaviorists your pet can benefit from listening to music during many different situations including:

  • Training sessions – This will help your pet concentrate better when you’re trying to teach him new tricks and commands.
  • During stressful situations (e.g. fireworks, traveling in a car)

Even if you don’t know what type of music to play, there’s been so much research done in this area in recent years that there are even albums available just for your pet. For instance, pianist Lisa Spector (in conjunction with scientist Susan Wagner) created “Through a Dog’s Ear” in 2003 after spending years raising puppies for blind people. She created the album after discovering that her 6 golden Labrador puppies were lulled to sleep by the piano.

Music is just one of the many important facets of keeping your dog healthy. Regardless of whatever else your canine needs, the Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Care Center has you covered. They understand your pet is a member of your family who deserves nothing but the best care possible. So, when you need to take your canine to the vet, contact them for the top-notch service their clients have come to expect.

Picture Credit: Ylanite Koppens

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How to Care for Your Senior Cat

How to Care for Your Senior CatWhen you adopt a kitten the last thing you think about is them becoming a senior cat, but it will eventually happen. As that time draws near, it’s important for you to be ready to take care of them. There are a few special ways you can do so.

Watch for Changes in Your Cat’s Habits

Cats do a great job of hiding the fact that they’re sick. Since signs are subtle and easy to miss, any difference in behavior (e.g. sleeping more, hiding) is something you should mention to your veterinarian since you know your cat best.

Watch for Changes in Weight

It’s challenging to notice a gradual change in your cat’s weight. However, when you notice either weight gain or an unplanned weight loss you should tell your veterinarian. A gain could result in a chronic disease that shortens your cat’s life span. On the other hand, a weight loss typically means there’s something wrong such as hyperthyroidism, intestinal disease, or diabetes.

Watch Their Litter Box

There’s a lot that your cat’s litter box can tell you about. Since you should be scooping the litter box more frequently to keep up with your cat’s increased urine output, these are things you should be able to easily notice and bring to the attention of your veterinarian.

Missing the litter box or having accidents around the house could be a sign that there’s an underlying medical issue. These could include:

  • Difficulty getting into the litter box due to muscle weakness
  • The litter box being in a “bad” place (e.g. having to traverse stairs)
  • Being frightened by too much noise or by other pets may cause your elderly cat not to use the litter box if it’s not in a secluded location
  • Your cat’s paws change as they grow older so you’ll want to make sure that the litter you use is gentle on them

Besides missing the litter box, your elderly cat may also suffer from:

  • Increased urine output is often a sign of urinary infections, but it could be a sign of diabetes, an over active thyroid gland, kidney disease, or high blood pressure
  • Constipation or not defecating daily due to dehydration
  • Stools that are softer, harder, or a different color

Watch how Much Your cat is Eating

It can be challenging to know how much your cat is eating if you have multiple cats in your home. However, you need to know if your elderly cat is eating less than normal so your veterinarian can intervene if there’s an issue. This could be a sign of a chronic disease, which if caught early enough could be easily treated.

Understand They’re Doing More Than “Slowing Down”

With age comes things like arthritis and degenerative joint disease – things your veterinarian will notice, but you may not. This is why you should develop a close relationship with Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialists and Emergency Care Center. Routine visits coupled with both mental and physical stimulation while at home will help your cat enjoy the remainder of their lives with you.

Picture Credit: Save-A-Pet Adoption

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How to Safely Travel with Your Pets

Safely Traveling With PetsAs a pet owner you may think your trip will be more enjoyable if you can bring Fido along, but, traveling is very stressful for your pets. Before you leave, you should make sure your pet is microchipped and has your information printed on their calendar. Otherwise the type of trip you take will have a heavy influence on your pet care.

Traveling by Plane

You should avoid this type of a trip unless Fido can fit under your seat. However, if this isn’t possible and you must still take Fido with you, make sure you heed these tips for proper pet care:

  • Do your best to book a direct flight whenever possible so it’s less likely Fido gets left on the tarmac or mishandled by baggage personnel during a layover.
  • Buy a USDA-approved shipping crate that’s big enough for your pet to stand, sit and turn around in comfortably. Line it with bedding (e.g. shredded paper or towels) to absorb accidents. Tape a small pouch of dried food outside the crate so Fido can be fed if he gets hungry. Also freeze a small dish or tray of water so it won’t spill but is there for them when they’re thirsty. Never lock the crate because you want airline personnel to be able to open it in case of an emergency. Mark the crate with the words “Live Animal,” and your name, cell phone number, and photo of your pet – carry this same photo with you as well in case Fido escapes from his carrier.

Taking a Road Trip

You can’t expect to just load Fido in your backseat and drive away, especially if you’re driving a long distance or will be gone for a long time. Instead, you should heed these pet care tips to help you prepare for a smooth and safe trip:

  • Take Fido on short drives before spending a lot of time in the car. If you plan to cross state lines, make sure you have his rabies vaccination record with you as some states will want to see this.
  • Use a well-ventilated crate or carrier to keep Fido safe and secure. Make sure it’s big enough for him to stand, sit, lie down and turn around in. You’ll also want to make sure that it’s secure enough that it won’t slide or shift if you stop abruptly. If you don’t use a crate, make sure Fido doesn’t ride with his head outside the window, and stays harnessed in the back seat.
  • Make sure you have food (never feed him in a moving vehicle), bottled water (unfamiliar water can make his stomach uncomfortable), a bowl, leash, a waste scoop, plastic bags, grooming supplies, medication, first-aid supplies, and any travel documents you need with you. Take along his favorite toy or pillow too as these things will give him a sense of familiarity.
  • Never leave Fido alone in a parked vehicle, especially on a hot day. Even if you have your windows open, your parked vehicle can quickly turn into a furnace and Fido will develop heatstroke. In cold weather, your car acts like a refrigerator in which he could freeze to death if you’re not careful.

Before you Leave Home

Make an appointment with Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialists and Emergency Care Center for Fido to get a checkup within 10 days of leaving on your trip. This is a great time to make sure his vaccinations are up-to-date and obtain a health certificate. You can also ask about ways to help your pet relax if you suspect they’ll be afraid, anxious or uncomfortable and get other pet care tips.

Picture Credit: Doxieone

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