Category Archives: cat

Great Quotes about Cats

cat-quotes-by-Gangster-Car-DriverBy Julia Williams

There is certainly no shortage of famous sayings about cats. Some are witty, some are wise, and some are just plain wrong. What I mean by wrong is that the saying presents a cat’s character in a way that is completely opposite from what any cat lover would say about their feline friend. When I read quotes like that, I wonder if the person ever spent so much as a day – an hour even – in the company of cats. It would seem not.

I’m not fond of those types of quotes because they perpetuate the myths that cats are antisocial, unloving and undeserving of our affection. I hate to think that someone who’d never spent time with a cat and didn’t know their true capability for bonding with humans, would judge them based on some negative saying.

I have no doubt there are many cats in the world that would’ve had a forever home, if not for some untrue saying. This might seem farfetched, but the reality is that a great many people will just believe what they read without substantiating it with personal experience.

Thankfully, there are lots of other quotes out there that paint cats with an accurate brush. It’s those cat quotes that I will share with you today. Perhaps my favorite cat quote of all time is by the French novelist Colette who said “Time spent with cats is never wasted.” Here are some others I like:
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Breed Profile: Burmese Cat


By Ruthie Bently

I got a tiny kitten for a Christmas present in 1981, and he was a sable Burmese I named Sam. It has been said that they are “little people in fur,” and I agree. Since then Burmese have become available in four colors that are recognized by the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA): sable, platinum, blue and champagne. Sam had an apple head, which is a rounded head; now there is a controversy about the head shape, and the apple head is not allowed to be imported into England. The first Burmese cat, a female from Burma named Wong Mau, was brought into the United States by Dr. Joseph Thompson of San Francisco in the early 1930s.

The British Burmese cat has a more triangular head (like the Siamese) and oriental look, and the available colors are greater than the cats here in the States. The history of the Burmese in Britain is a bit different, and didn’t really get started until after 1945 when soldiers coming home from Burma brought them home. The breed was recognized in 1952 by the Britain’s Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF). The colors that are acceptable in Britain are the blue, lilac, chocolate and brown tortoiseshells, and the cream, lilac, chocolate, blue, brown and red. None of the allowed colors should have spots or barring, and all colors should be shaded darker on their backs and lighter underneath.

The Burmese has a short coat that feels like silk, and they are a sturdy cat for their size. They are very playful, even as adults. They will tolerate dogs, they like children, and do well riding in a car if trained early. They love their humans and often act more like a dog than a cat, as they will follow you around the house. Burmese cats are extremely loving, and a free lap is one of their favorite places to be – unless you get them involved in a spirited game of fetch! Sam’s favorite toy was the plastic ring from the top of a milk bottle, and he could play fetch until your arm gave out; his energy never did.

Burmese cats are vocal, like their Siamese cousins, and love to talk if allowed. Their voice (even when complaining) is a softer voice than most cats. They will sulk if they get upset, but don’t stay mad for very long. The males are supposed to be more laid back than the females, but all the Burmese cats I met at the breeder’s were very friendly. Sam loved to cuddle like most Burmese and would sleep next to my head on the pillow unless it was a cold night, in which case he was under the blankets.

Most breeders let their Burmese kittens go between three and four months of age, when they’ve had their first set of shots and have had time to become socialized. You will want to visit the cattery to see the conditions the kitten has been raised in. The kitten should be friendly, easy to handle, curious and energetic. Their coat should be healthy looking, their ears should be clean, and their noses and eyes should be clear.

A reputable breeder should give you a health guarantee with the kitten, and will usually provide you with papers of registration after the kitten has been altered. The breeder should be willing to discuss the health and care of the kitten and provide you with their medical records for your vet if asked. If you are purchasing your Burmese cat to show, the CFA disapproves of declawing. The Burmese was recognized by the Cat Fanciers’ Association in 1936.

If you are interested in getting a purebred cat, a Burmese is a wonderful choice that will bring you years of joy and laughter. They are nowhere as aloof as most cats are accused of being, and truly live up to their reputation as “little people in fur.”

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.

Have You Hugged Your Pet Today?


By Julia Williams

The importance of hugs should never be underestimated. Without this vital form of touch, our health (both physical and mental) would surely suffer. Many of you may remember hearing the true stories about babies in orphanges overseas who were deprived of touch, and they failed to thrive and grow. Studies have also shown that how we were touched – or not touched – early in life can even impact our immune system later in life.

Touch never loses its force. Hugs never lose that magical ability to transform a crappy day into a great one. Hugging dissolves barriers between people; it melts the metaphorical “ice” around a person’s heart, and helps us cope with pain and sadness.

Can you imagine never hugging your pet? I certainly can’t. Although an animal’s intellectual ability differs from humans, they still have thoughts and emotions, and the basic right not to suffer at the hands of their human caretakers. Unfortunately for pets, the moral rule and the laws on what constitutes neglect are much more lax than with human beings.

A few years ago, I nearly ended a friendship over this very thing. My friend was renting a cottage where the landlord lived on the property. They kept a German Shepherd in a small pen very near the entrance to his cottage. And when I say “small,” I mean small. The poor dog belonged to the landlord’s son who didn’t live on the property. It was rather obvious no one paid this dog a lick of attention other than putting down food and water for it. The dog was never taken out of its pen to go for a walk or get a bath (and it stunk to high heaven!), and who knows when it had received any form of affection.

As an animal lover, it distressed me greatly to see a dog kept in such deplorable conditions. I begged my friend to do something to help the dog. I asked him to talk to the owner about the dog’s care, or ask if we could walk it or give it a long overdue bath, but he didn’t want to get involved. I could’t understand how he could drive up every day, look over at the dog who was crying out for attention, and just go into his house. It broke my heart.

I called the animal shelter to ask them what constituted animal cruelty, and was told that as long as it had food and water, and some shelter (it had a partial makeshift roof over one end of its pen) there was nothing they could do. I was aghast that in this day and age it was still legal to treat an animal like that. However far we’ve come with human rights, it’s apparent we still have a long way to go in regards to our pets.

In the end, I persuaded my friend to speak to the owner, who spoke to his son. He came over now and then to let the dog run in their yard on a very long tether. He also gave it a bath. This wasn’t much, but it was certainly better than what the dog had before. My friend and I could also pet him without needing to take a hot shower afterwards. I wanted so much more for this beautiful dog who definitely drew the “short stick” in life, but it was out of my hands.

If I made the laws, hugging would be a basic right for all animal companions. But since I don’t, all I can do is give my own three cats as many hugs as humanly possible. It’s a win-win for us all. They enjoy the attention and the love, and I get to feel the pure joy that comes from touching (and being touched by) another soul. It doesn’t matter to me that a “fur coat” sets us apart in terms of species classification. A hug is a hug, and it’s one of life’s greatest pleasures.

Have you hugged your pet today?

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.

Litter Box Training Do’s and Don’ts


By Julia Williams

Cats are fastidious and intelligent creatures that instinctively cover their waste, which makes litter box training a kitten so much easier than house training a puppy. Score one for kitties in the “cats versus dogs” debate!

If you adopt a new kitten that was raised indoors with its Mama, it will most likely already be trained to use the litter box. However, if you are fostering young kittens for a shelter, raising a litter of kittens, or adopting one that isn’t using a cat box yet for some reason, you will need to do some training.

If you’re lucky, your litter box training might involve little more than placing the kitten in the box a few times. As I said, cats are smart (okay, maybe I am biased just a little) and they generally use their litter box right away. Nonetheless, there are some Do’s and Don’ts to keep in mind. Establishing good litter box habits at an early age is the key to avoiding problems in the future.

Litter Box Do’s

* Choose an appropriate box. My friend adopted a kitten recently, and I went with her to pick it up. When we arrived at her house with kitten in hand, she showed me the litter box she’d bought. It was a splendid covered cat box with a flap door, just like the one I use for my cats. Unfortunately, the entrance is a good 8” from the floor – which is fine for an adult cat but definitely not a tiny six-week-old kitten! We both had a good laugh, and then we went out to get a kitten-sized litter box with low sides that her new little fur-baby could easily climb over.

* Choose the right cat litter. Kittens often taste their litter, and there is concern among some cat lovers that the clumping clay litter can harm their digestive systems. I don’t know anyone who’s experienced that, but if you want to err on the side of caution, there are several natural alternatives you can try. My favorite natural cat litter is made from finely ground corn; others include wheat, sawdust and pine pellets.

*Location, location, location. As in real estate, the location of your cat’s litter box is very important. It should be placed in an easily accessible area that’s relatively quiet and offers some privacy. Make sure the cat box is not located near appliances that make startling or loud noises, such as washing machines or refrigerators. If you have toddlers or dogs, put the litter box in an area that you can make off limits to them with a baby gate. This is to make sure kitty doesn’t get ambushed while doing his business, and also to keep curious hands and mouths out of the cat litter.

* Provide more than one litter box if you have several cats, or have multiple stories in your home that the kitten will have access to.

* Confine a young kitten to a small area until you know they are consistently using the litter box, particularly at night while you’re asleep.

* Take your kitten to the litter box throughout the day, particularly if you see it sniffing around as though looking for a spot to “go.” The first few times, you can very gently scratch the litter with the kitten’s paws to simulate the digging, although it’s not really necessary. When your kitten uses the litter box, it’s a good idea to praise and pet them, to let them know they did a good thing and you’re happy with them.

Litter Box Don’ts

* Accidents may happen. Never, ever punish your kitten by spanking or rubbing his nose in the mess. This only creates fear, distrust, and a cat that will grow up not wanting to be in your company. Be sure to clean the area they soiled with a product containing enzymes which remove the scent.

* Don’t change the type of litter if your kitten seems to like the one you have. If you do decide to try a new cat litter, mix it into the old litter gradually if the type of litter is compatible. For instance, when I switched from clumping clay to corn-based litter which is also a clumping type, I added a little of the new along with the old for several weeks.

* Don’t forget to clean the box regularly. For some cats, that may mean daily scooping.

* Don’t move the litter box to a new location suddenly. If you want to change the location, leave the old box where it is and place a second box in the new spot until your kitten is using it regularly.

* Don’t tempt fate by leaving a large potted plant at floor level. The dirt is attractive to kittens, and they might use it as a toilet or just have some fun digging in it.

Your litter box training should be a breeze if you remember three simple things: start early, stay consistent and provide a suitable environment for your “feline loo.”

Read more articles by Julia Williams

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.

What Does “Responsible Pet Ownership” Really Mean?


By Ruthie Bently

From time to time, CANIDAE puts “freebies” in their bags of food. The first bag of their food I bought had a magnetic calendar in it; the next bag I got had a bracelet in it. On one side it says “CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods” and on the other side it says “RESPONSIBLE PET OWNERSHIP.” I don’t need to be reminded what that means, however I wear it every day so it is always in my focus. But what does responsible pet ownership really mean?

It means doing everything you can to make sure that the pet you choose (or the pet that chooses you) has the best life you can provide for them. If you pick a puppy, it means regular vet visits for the first year with booster shots, having your puppy neutered or spayed if you’re not a breeder, teething and everything else that owning a puppy entails. It means getting into a puppy class for training and socialization so you have a well-behaved dog. High quality food and fresh water daily are on the list too, and should be at the top. You need to provide proper teething and chewing toys for your pet, as well as toys for regular exercise. You may even want to consider giving your dog a job to do, as they thrive on variety in their lives.

Responsible Pet Ownership means dealing with ticks, fleas, heartworms, kennel cough and all the other parasites and diseases that may come along. It means regular grooming, bathing and toenail clipping. It could also include picking burrs and weed seeds out of paw pads and coats, so they do not imbed themselves and cause an infection or a matt in the fur. Responsible Pet Ownership means having a safe place for your pet to play outside, with proper shade and confinement, as well as fresh water.

If you adopt a “special needs” pet, it could mean dealing with daily medications, healing salves, physical rehabilitation, monthly vet visits, even sizing changes for a cart if that is what your dog needs to move around. Responsible Pet Ownership means being vigilant every hour of every day to keep your pet safe from environmental dangers that may be in your home and on your property that you may not even realize exist.

It means living with a sentient creature that loves you just because you are. They don’t care how long you spend away from home and dance around when you get back. They don’t care if you have had a bad day at work, they are just glad you are home. They snuggle with you when you are sick, and cuddle with you on cold winter nights. They will hog the blankets and the bed (if you let them). They get you to exercise and spend more time outside in the sun, the rain, the snow and everything in between. They give unconditional love, are non-judgmental and expect nothing in return. They make us better humans, because they can.

It doesn’t really matter what kind of an animal you choose to spend your life with. Just like us, they have quirks or oddities; whichever word you choose will suffice. That’s not important to them, as they just want to be with us. As a species, we are truly blessed if we have an animal or two (or more) in our lives. They make us better humans.

Read more articles by Ruthie Bently

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.

Great Ways to Pamper Your Pet


By Julia Williams

My mother once informed me that my three cats were spoiled rotten. At first her comment irked me, but then I realized it was true. I also realized that there was absolutely nothing wrong with spoiling them! People who love their pets want to treat them in a way that makes the animal happy and enriches its life. Otherwise, what’s the point of having a pet? Besides, no amount of pampering could ever equal the amount of love and joy they add to my life.

Then too, what one person sees as pampering might seem like a necessity to another. In my frugal mother’s eyes, feeding my cats a premium food like FELIDAE® is a waste of money. However, I know that this high-quality, all natural food is worth every penny because it improves my cats’ health and extends their lives. So while she may think I “spoil” them with cat food that costs more than the cheap supermarket fare, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Besides feeding your dog or cat good food, there are countless other ways to pamper your pet. Here are just a few:

1. Give them your undivided attention by petting and grooming them, talking to them and hugging them. While some people insist that cats are too independent to want or need attention, I have to disagree. I’ve had many different feline companions over the years, and not one of them was aloof or indifferent to my doting ways. It’s true that every cat has a distinct personality, and some enjoy the attention more than others, but they all enjoy it nonetheless.

The best thing about pampering your pet with attention is that it’s free. Dogs and cats that are petted and loved on a daily basis will be happier and better behaved. A gentle brushing of their fur is something almost every pet loves. Once a week, you could give your pet a soothing body massage, too. Don’t laugh – massaging your pet increases circulation and makes their coat shine – and most dogs and cats really seem to love it!

2. Pamper your dog or cat with a nice cozy pet bed. Since they spend the better part of their day sleeping (or at the very least, relaxing in a half-awake state), providing them with a comfy bed is really not so much pampering as it is a necessity. An added bonus for you is that a bed of their own keeps the pet hair contained to one primary spot. A heated pet bed is great if you have an older, arthritic dog or cat. They’re safe to use, and the gentle heat will soothe their joints.

3. Dog sweaters and coats may seem silly and superfluous to some people, but many short-haired breeds do get chilly going outdoors in winter. For these dogs, a sweater or coat is not a fashion statement – it’s a practical way to keep them warm and dry.

4. Treats can be a great way to pamper your pet, provided you don’t overdo it. A fat pet is not a healthy pet, so give them treats only once in awhile, and make sure to factor the treat into their daily food allotment. Bits of plain cooked chicken or turkey, or freeze-dried liver, chicken and fish treats that have no additives or preservatives are the healthiest treats you can give your pet.

Homemade dog biscuits and cat treats are also healthy ways to pamper your pets, and they’re easy to make. I have two “pet recipe” books that I use, and there are some good recipes on the internet as well. If you’d rather buy your dog treats, try the SNAP-BISCUITS® made by CANIDAE®.

5. Toys are an inexpensive way to pamper your pet, and they can help them get some exercise, too. The nice thing about both dogs and cats is that they’re pretty easy to please when it comes to toys. In general, anything that keeps them safely amused instead of looking around for trouble, is a good toy to get.

The main thing to keep in mind is that pampering your pet should be all about what your pet likes, rather than what you want. And you don’t need to be able to speak “dog” or “cat” to tell the difference! Pamper your pooch or spoil your kitty with the things that make them happy, and you’ll be rewarded with a lifetime of unconditional love and joy. In my eyes, that’s a pretty darn good trade.

Read more articles by Julia Williams

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.