Category Archives: canidae

Can Doggy Kisses Give Us Beneficial Germs?

By Linda Cole

The health benefits of owning a dog are well known. Young children raised in homes with pets have lower incidents of developing allergies and asthma. Pets help reduce anxiety and stress, and can lower our blood pressure. Now a group of researchers from the University of Arizona are taking doggy kisses to a new level – an upcoming study aims to find out if there are beneficial germs for humans in a dog’s slobbery licks. The researchers believe doggy kisses may contain probiotics that are as beneficial to us as a cup of yogurt.

Probiotics are helpful live bacteria and yeasts that live in the gut. They are especially important for a healthy digestive system, which is home to 500+ different types of good and bad bacteria. Probiotics help move food through the gut, balance out the good and bad bacteria to keep the body working normally, lower the amount of bad bacteria that could cause infections or other health concerns, and help replenish good bacteria after a round of antibiotics.

The focus of this new pilot study will be finding out if there’s any positive effect on the overall health of older people who live with a dog. Past studies have shown the health benefits children gain from living with a dog, and researchers want to find out if there are similar results for older people who aren’t dog owners or haven’t had a dog in the home for a period of time.

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An Indoor Cat’s Need for Territorial Stability

By Langley Cornwell

All cat lovers know how important a stable environment is for their feline friend. Most of us do a good job of giving our cats what they need in order to live long and healthy lives. We feed them high quality food like CANIDAE grain free PURE, we take them for regular veterinarian exams and we give them plenty of snuggles – but sometimes it’s good to be reminded of a few of their less obvious needs. With that in mind, here are some tips to ensure your indoor cat’s home territory is stable and safe.

Why are Cats Territorial?

In the wild, a feline’s territory is clearly marked, defined, and well-defended which is vital for hunting and breeding success. In most cases, a cat’s connection to their environment or territory is stronger than their connection with the other occupants of that same territory. And this need for territorial dominance starts early; the youngest of kittens can differentiate between their own environment and another one. In fact, a one day old kitten will claim an individual mother’s nipple and drink from it exclusively. Even though kittens are born blind and deaf, they can distinguish their personal nipple by its distinct smell and will struggle to return to that same nipple every time they eat.

Clarity of Surroundings

Domestic cats are keenly aware of their surroundings. Because of this, they need to live in a predictable, stable environment in order to thrive. Territorial stability is everything to a cat. Their territory must be a place where they can feel safe and in control. For you, that means keeping things the same as much as possible. When you must make changes to your home, make them slowly and mindfully.

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10 Dog Related Terms Used in Conversation

By Laurie Darroch

Dogs have become so much a part of our world that terms related to their behavior and interactions are interwoven into our conversations. Although there are many dog-related expressions, this sampling of just ten will show you how much our canine friends have influenced us.

Dog Tired

If you’ve ever watched your dog run and play with extreme high energy until they fall asleep and barely move a muscle from sheer exhaustion, you have an idea of the origins of the term dog tired. A dog who is that tired may be difficult to rouse from sleep. When you are dog tired, you have reached the end of your rope and need rest to rev up for the next activity or day.

Dog-Eared

This term has different meanings depending on its usage. A dog-eared book has the corners of pages turned down as bookmarks, or to mark pages with pertinent information. Sometimes it is the sign of a very loved and well-read book. Any item which is worn out or shabby may also be referred to as dog-eared (old clothing, photographs or houses, for example). Basically, the item has seen better days.

In a Dog’s Age

You may not have seen an old friend in a dog’s age, or you may not have been to an old hangout or eaten a favorite food in a dog’s age. It simply means it has been a very long time since you’ve had that experience. The typical life span of dogs is about 10 to 15 years. That is a long time not to have done something you used to do!

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Could You Identify Your Dog by Scent Alone?

By Linda Cole

The sniffing ability of the average canine is 1000 times more powerful than humans, and they can locate their owner in a sea of other people. Some smells we encounter can cause an emotional reaction by stirring up past memories. Many everyday odors are registered unconsciously in the mind and we barely notice them. Dog owners may scoff, but one study showed that the smell of your dog is imprinted in your mind and that you do have the ability to recognize your pet by scent alone!

Different odors surround us every day in the home and workplace, but most of them are so familiar we don’t even think about them. We are more likely to notice an unfamiliar scent that catches our attention. There have been a handful of studies done on humans to determine if we have the ability to recognize people close to us based on smell alone. It turns out that mothers can accurately recognize the smell of their babies. Both mothers and fathers can identify the scent of their children, and women can accurately categorize strangers into different age groups based only on the individual’s scent.

In a study done by psychologists at Queens University in Ireland, 26 dog owners were recruited to participate in research to see if they would be able to identify their own dogs by scent alone. Each owner was given a flannel blanket and instructed to remove all other bedding in their dog’s bed and use only the flannel blanket for three consecutive nights. Owners were also instructed to have their dog sleep in a different room from theirs.

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What Your Cat is Really Thinking

By Rocky Williams, feline guest blogger

It should come as no surprise to even the most intellectually challenged human among you that what you believe your cat thinks versus what your cat is really thinking, is never the same thing. Never! We are different species after all; we just don’t have the ability to think alike. Some would argue that cats don’t think at all, but none of those types would ever be reading a pet blog, so they don’t count. Besides, anyone with eyes can see the wheels turning in their cat’s brain, which is surely proof that we are capable of deep thoughts. Right?

For the sake of argument, let’s all agree that cats do think, although I admit it’s not always profound. Sometimes it’s more along the lines of “show me the cat food!” thinking, especially for a self-professed foodie feline like me. Nine times out of ten, I’m thinking of food. When will I eat again? What flavor will I get today? How stinky will the stinky goodness be? If I meow incessantly, will she give me more CANIDAE treats? But I digress.

Cats also act according to our own feline view of the world, which is not the same as the human one. And yet, my own human constantly surprises me with her inability to get that simple concept. She’s convinced that I rub up against her leg out of some deep-seated desire to show her my undying love. Ha ha meow! I only do that to make sure she never leaves the house looking like a person who does not have a cat, which IMO is the saddest human of all!

I put my paws together to come up with some other scenarios to illustrate the difference between what a human is thinking and what a cat is thinking.

When the Human is Eating

Human: “Kitty, I just fed you. Why must you always try to steal my food when I am eating?”
Cat: “Why must you wave that tantalizing piece of chicken in front of my face? How am I supposed to grab it off your fork if you won’t hold it still for me?”

When the Human is in the Bathroom

Human: “Trust me kitty…there is nothing for you to see in here. Please stop scratching at the door to get in.”
Cat: “Human? Are you OK in there? Human? Oh no! I must save her! If she drowns, who will feed me?”

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The Changing Face of Veterinary Medicine

veterinary medBy Linda Cole

The field of study in veterinary medicine is wide open these days for people who love animals and want to pursue a career working with household pets, wildlife, farm animals or other animals. Advances in technology are helping pets live longer, and changes in the way animals are viewed have created a need for more specialized studies. Veterinary medicine is no longer just about caring for pets in an office. There’s even a field of study that helps protect our food supply. There are some surprising opportunities available for someone with a degree in veterinary medicine besides working as a veterinarian or vet technician.

Sports Medicine

The American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation is open for veterinarians from around the world to get an advanced degree in the science of sports medicine. Its main focus is on the structural, physiological, medical and surgical needs of working and athletic animals. Currently there’s two fields of study: Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation (Canine) and Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation (Equine).

Shelter Medicine

Vets who care for shelter animals deal with the health and welfare of pets in a unique environment. In an effort to improve quality of life for pets that have been abused, neglected, homeless or given up because of medical issues or age, shelter medicine is an important and necessary field of study which also promotes the bond we share with pets, and improves the treatment of animals.

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