Category Archives: adopting

How to Determine if a Rescue Dog or Cat is a Fit for You

rescue bgraney55By Laurie Darroch

(CANIDAE loves rescue pets! They are running a “rescue” themed photo contest this month, and three lucky pet owners will each win a six month supply of premium quality CANIDAE food for their dog or cat. The details are at the end of this article.)

It is a wonderful idea to adopt a dog or cat in need of rescue. Every animal deserves a chance at a good life with a loving family. For a dog or cat lover, it’s a natural thing to want to give a home to an animal in need. Realistically though, it’s a good idea to look for one that is well suited to your life and living situation, and not just adopt because the animal is cute and in need. The relationship is for a lifetime, so it’s important to determine if a particular dog or cat is the right fit for you. Here are some things to consider.

The Pet’s History

No matter the age of the dog or cat, you are adopting an animal with a history of some kind. In the case of homeless, deserted or abused animals, they may arrive with behaviors that take some adjusting and retraining. Because of their past treatment, a rescue animal may have issues that require a special kind of patience to help overcome.

Read More »

EmailGoogle GmailBlogger PostTwitterFacebookGoogle+PinterestShare

Common Faux Pas Pet Owners Make

By Julia Williams

We all strive to be responsible pet owners and “do the right thing” where our beloved furry friends are concerned. We are human, though, which means that despite having the best intentions, sometimes we slip up. Read on for some common blunders pet owners make, and how to avoid them.

Adopting on a Whim

Judging by the number of people I know who’ve made this mistake (myself included) I’d say that “impulse adoption” is fairly common. It’s also understandable. That adorable little puppy face in the window can be so hard to resist. That kitten being given away on the street calls to our most basic need to “save” this tiny helpless being. However, getting a pet before doing your research or making the necessary preparations can have disastrous results, with the pet being the one who bears the brunt of our hasty decision. Adopting a pet is a long-term commitment, and you need to be absolutely certain you’re picking one that is appropriate for your family, your living situation and your lifestyle.

Not Enough Exercise

Yes, it can be darn inconvenient to walk the dog in frigid winter weather, or make time to play with your cat every day. But exercise is a vital part of a healthy lifestyle for our pets, just as it is for us. Couch potato pets run the risk of becoming overweight, which can cause numerous health issues including arthritis, diabetes, joint issues, liver problems, difficulty breathing and a decreased quality of life. Insufficient physical activity can also contribute to bad behavior. How much exercise is enough depends on your pet’s age, breed, size and health status. A basic rule of thumb is 30 minutes a day for dogs, and 15 minutes for cats. Consider that the bare bones minimum; your pet may need more exercise than that.

Read More »

Let’s Start a New Black Friday Trend!

black friday nikitaBy Julia Williams

For many people, Black Friday is all about shopping. People go a little crazy, even going so far as trampling and pummeling others, all in the name of getting a good deal on this, that or the other. Personally, I steer clear of all retail stores on Black Friday because the whole thing strikes me as madness. Yes, you can get Christmas gifts for a great price…but is it worth it? I guess it’s an individual decision.

In any event, today I am thinking not about Black Friday shopping but about a different black …all of the black cats and black dogs that are in animal shelters, waiting for someone to pick them so they can have the life and home they deserve.

black friday maja dumatHistorically, black pets have the hardest time getting adopted, for a variety of reasons. Some people believe the myth that black cats are bad luck. Others won’t adopt a black dog or cat because he’s not “colorful” enough or they don’t think a black pet has much personality because they can’t see his facial expressions as well as those with lighter colored faces.

I don’t get it. Judging a cat or a dog by the color of his fur? That’s more bizarre to me than the Black Friday shopping mayhem. I have two black cats – Mickey and Rocky – and if I had a negative bias toward black pets, I’d have missed out on being loved by two of the coolest cats I know. Their black fur is not very colorful, but their personalities? Now that’s an entirely different story!

The motto often used by shelters and rescue groups is “adopt, don’t shop!” It doesn’t have anything to do with Black Friday, but can you imagine what would happen black friday beverlyif every person who went out shopping today, went to an animal shelter instead and picked out a black pet for their family? Millions of wonderful animals would be “home” for Christmas, that’s what!

However you spend this day, I hope you stay safe and warm.

Top photo by Nikita/Flickr
Middle photo by Maja Dumat/Flickr
Bottom photo by Beverly Goodwin/Flickr

Read more articles by Julia Williams

Judging a Cat By the Color of Its Coat

By Julia Williams

You’ve probably heard these stereotypes about our feline friends: black cats are bad luck; tortoiseshell cats have a feisty attitude (“tortitude”); tuxedo cats are very loving; calico cats are always crazy; ginger cats are super friendly; while white cats are aloof or shy.

People (and even some veterinarians) pre-judge cats by the color of their coat all the time, but is there any truth to the stereotypes? Can a cat’s coat color predict behavior and personality?

Plenty of people who share their home with a tortoiseshell will tell you their cat does indeed have that aforementioned tortitude, but I have to wonder how much of that is perception rather than reality. In other words, perhaps they heard about tortitude somewhere along the way, and projected that stereotype onto their cat. If someone has a preconceived notion that all tortoiseshell cats act a certain way, they may subconsciously look for things that substantiate this. Then too, it seems to me that every housecat could be perceived as having a spunky attitude, at least some of the time. That is the nature of a cat, more or less.

“Black cat syndrome” is a somewhat different story. Shelter workers say that black cats typically have a much harder time getting adopted than their more colorful counterparts. Some believe it’s because of the “bad luck” myth and purported association with witches, while others think it has more to do with the fact that darker colored cats are harder to see and observe in the shelter cages.

Read More »

How to Pick the Right Age Dog for Your Lifestyle

By Laurie Darroch

Breed is not the only thing you should consider when deciding to adopt a dog. The age of the dog you choose is also an important factor. You want a dog that fits your location, energy level, patience level and lifestyle. What things should be considered in the choice?

Puppies are adorable and seem like a wonderful choice, but they take constant supervision, consistent and regular training, and positive behavior reinforcement. They are not the right choice for everyone who is considering making a new fur baby part of their lives.

Take into consideration the fact that training is around the clock. Teaching a puppy to potty train, for instance, involves constant monitoring, reinforcement of good and bad behavior, and the almost certain possibility of accidents happening. Think of a puppy as a child without a diaper. They go when they need to, wherever they need to. Their control is not the same as an older, trained dog whose digestive functions have matured. Potty training a puppy may mean multiple night trips outside, even in the winter or rain. Like a human baby, you are at the beck and call of their needs, not yours.

Feeding is more of a challenge with a puppy. They are constantly ravenous. Their higher metabolisms burn through the energy their food provides more quickly than an older dog. They may require multiple smaller feedings each day. That means more attention to feeding schedules more often, every day. It takes time to adjust to a feeding schedule.

Read More »

Tips for Finding a Dog Rescue Group

By Suzanne Alicie

Although I’m not in the market for a new dog at the moment, when the time comes I will get a rescue dog. There are plenty of great dogs in need of a forever home out there. But what if you’re looking for a rescue dog to adopt, yet still want to get a purebred or a specific breed? That’s when you need to know how to find a rescue program for the type of dog you’re looking for.

Check with Breeders

Many dog breeders are approached when a dog needs a home, but they can’t take in all the dogs of a breed so they need to be able to tell people who to get in touch with for a rescue. Because breeders specialize in a specific breed, they often know a lot of people who deal with the same kind of dogs. When a person cares deeply about a breed and wants to be helpful, they will know of a reputable rescue where you can find the dog you’re looking for.

Look Online

Simply use your search engine to find rescue groups and then narrow down the search with the breed you are looking for. BUT keep in mind that not all rescues are the same. Do a little research, check out their website, and try to locate people who have worked with the rescue to make sure it is a reputable program.  Facebook is a great way to find out what people think of an organization and what their experiences have been.

Read More »