Thursday, December 22, 2011

Recipe for a Happy New Year

CLEAN thoroughly 12 whole months.
DIVIDE into 365 parts; set aside, preparing one part only at a time as follows:
MIX WELL into each day; 1 part patience, 1 part work, 1 part courage.
ADD to each day; 1 part each of hope, faithfulness, generosity and kindness.
BLEND with: 1 part prayer, 1 part meditation and 1 good deed.
SEASON the mixture with a dash of good spirits, a sprinkle of fun, a pinch of play and a cup of good humor.
POUR mixture into vessel of love.
COOK over radiant joy, garnish with a smile.
SERVE with quietness, unselfishness and cheer.
YIELD: 1 Happy Year

Wishing everyone a Happy, Healthy and Blessed New Year.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Chicken jerky treats linked to mystery illnesses, deaths in dogs

We need to be so careful on the products we choose for our beloved pets.
If you have purchased these chicken jerky treats, you might want to reconsider feeding them to your pet after reading this article.

For a healthy alternative to these treats for your dog, check out: Life's Abundance Dog Treats. Life's Abundance products are made here in the USA and are made from all natural ingredients.

Chicken jerky treats may be to blame for dozens of new reports of mysterious illnesses and some deaths in dogs, prompting a renewed warning for pet owners by the Food and Drug Administration.

At least 70 dogs have been sickened so far this year after reportedly eating chicken jerky products imported from China, FDA officials said. That’s up from 54 reports of illness in 2010. Some of the dogs have died, according to the anecdotal reports from pet owners and veterinarians.

FDA officials say they have not been able to find a cause for the illnesses. Extensive chemical and microbiological testing has failed to turn up a specific contaminant and officials did not identify a specific brand of treats. They note that the reports of illness have not conclusively been tied to chicken jerky products, also sold as chicken tenders, chicken strips or chicken treats.

The new warning follows previous FDA cautions about chicken jerky treats in 2007 and 2008. But after a high of 156 reports of illness in 2007, the number of complaints dropped. Now, it's rising again.

Dog owners and vets are reporting that animals may be stricken with a range of illnesses within days or hours of eating chicken jerky, including kidney failure and Fanconi syndrome, a condition characterized by low glucose.

Symptoms may include decreased appetite, decreased activity, vomiting, diarrhea, increased water consumption and increased urination. If dogs show any of these signs, stop feeding the animal the chicken jerky products, FDA officials said. If signs are severe or persist for more than 24 hours, seek veterinary help.

Most dogs have recovered, officials said.

Illnesses can be reported to the FDA’s Pet Food Complaint site.

By JoNel Aleccia

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Why Dogs Can't Eat Chocolate - By: Dr. Dawn Ruben

Halloween and the temptation of chocolate is everywhere this time of year. But our dogs should not eat any chocolate because for them, chocolate is poison.

In addition to a high fat content, chocolate contains caffeine and theobromine, two different types of stimulants that affect the central nervous system and the heart muscle, as well as increasing the frequency of urination.

Six ounces of semi-sweet chocolate can be toxic to the nervous system of a 20-pound dog. The worst a Hershey bar can do to you is add an inch to your hips. But that same candy – even in relatively small amounts – can make a dog very sick.

Symptoms of Poisoning
If your 50-pound dog gets his paws on a single chocolate-chip cookie, it probably won't cause him serious problems. However, if he gobbles up more – a pan of brownies, say – he may develop vomiting or diarrhea.

Once toxic levels are reached, the stimulants kick in, and this is when you really have to worry. Symptoms include: restlessness, hyperactivity, muscle twitching, increased urination and/or excessive panting. If your pet isn't treated, he could go into a seizure – possibly even die.

How Much Is Toxic?
The amount of chocolate that it takes to poison your pet depends on the type of chocolate he's eaten and his weight. White chocolate has the least amount of stimulants and baking chocolate or cocoa beans have the highest. Here is a list of the most common sources of chocolate and the amount that leads to toxicity:

White Chocolate. Mild signs of toxicity can occur when 45 ounces per pound of body weight is ingested. Severe toxicity occurs when 90 ounces per pound of body weight in ingested. This means that a 20-pound dog would need to ingest at least 55 pounds of white chocolate to cause nervous system signs. A 10-pound cat would need to ingest 27 pounds. Yes, that is twenty seven pounds! White chocolate has very little real chocolate in it. Therefore, the levels of caffeine and theobromine are very low. Tremendous amounts of white chocolate need to be ingested in order to cause toxic signs from chocolate. It is highly unlikely that white chocolate ingestion will result in the toxic neurologic signs but, the severe gastrointestinal effects from a high fat food develop with much less white chocolate ingestion.

Milk Chocolate. Mild signs of toxicity can occur when 0.7 ounces per pound of body weight is ingested. Severe signs occur when 2 ounces per pound of body weight is ingested. This means that a little less than one pound of milk chocolate can be toxic to the nervous system of a 20-pound dog. A 10-pound cat would need to ingest 1/2 pound.

Semi-Sweet Chocolate. Mild signs of toxicity can occur when 1/3 ounce per pound of body weight is ingested. Severe signs occur when 1 ounce per pound of body weight is ingested. This means that as little as 6 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate can be toxic to the nervous system of a 20-pound dog. A 10-pound cat would need to ingest 3 ounces.

Baking Chocolate. Mild signs of toxicity can occur when 0.1 ounce per pound of body weight is ingested. Severe signs occur when 0.3 ounce per pound of body weight is ingested. Two small one-ounce squares of baking chocolate can be toxic to a 20-pound dog. A 10-pound cat would need to ingest 1 ounce of baking chocolate. This type of chocolate has the highest concentration of caffeine and theobromine and very little needs to be ingested before signs of illness become apparent.

Even if your pet doesn't eat enough chocolate to induce toxicity, the candy's high fat content may cause him to vomit or have diarrhea at much smaller amounts than those shown. If that happens, watch him carefully. If his symptoms don't clear up within eight hours, call your veterinarian (if your pet is very small or young, call within four hours); aside from toxicity issues, you don't want the animal to dehydrate. Try to be as precise as you can about the type of chocolate the animal ate, how much he took and approximately when he ate it.

The sooner you get help, the better off your pet will be. If the animal is showing signs of toxicity, he has a good prognosis if he's treated within four to six hours of ingestion. The effects of the chocolate can linger for 12 to 36 hours, though, so your pet may require hospitalization.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Two Dogs Dining

This is hilarious. Wish our little poodle could wipe his mouth after dining. Enjoy:

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Fun Facts About Cats

Did you know:

- Cats are members of the Felidea family.
- A litter of kittens is called a kindle, and a group of cats is called a clowder
- Cats are the only animals that purr. They can purr at around 26 cycles per second which is the same frequency as an idling diesel engine!
- A cat's nose pad is as unique as a human fingerprint. No two nose prints are identical.
- A cat's hearing is much stronger and more sensitive than a dog's or a human's. Our hearing stops at 20 khz; a cat's at 65 khz.

- Cats have 32 muscles in each ear and can turn their ear very quickly to catch noise. Much faster than a very alert watchdog.
- A cat's sense of smell is about 14 times stronger than ours.
- Cats have over 100 vocal sounds, while dogs have only 10.
- Normal body temperature for a cat is between 100.5F and 102.5F.
- Cats drink liquid from the underside of their tongue, not from the top.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Last of rescued Bolivian lions roam free in Keenesburg

Twenty acres might not sound like a lot of territory to roam for a lion, but for a group of rescued lions who spent most of their lives inside cages - it most definitely is.

Back in February, 25 lions who were rescued from Bolivia arrived at the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg. They had come from horrendous conditions as circus animals.

For the past few months, the cats have been rehabbing at the sanctuary, which is 30 miles northeast of Denver.

Tuesday, the final seven lions were released from their relatively tight quarters where they had been healing. They now have the freedom to roam 20 acres.

Fido helps children learn to read

Children struggling to learn to read make gains in literacy when they start reading aloud to specially trained dogs and their handlers, according to Jennifer Scarlett, co-president of the San Francisco SPCA.

She says the dogs help the students overcome the reticence they might feel around a teacher, and adds, they also don't correct the way you talk or correct your pronunciations. Many of the students were speaking English as a second or third language or were considered at risk students.

Scarlett writes: "The third- and fourth-graders studied showed progress in so many ways: their confidence grew, their anxieties diminished, and there were fewer classroom outbursts or pupils who had to be excused in the middle of class time. Some ADHD children seemed to get better at just sitting still. Best of all, the students who read with the dogs showed an interest in practicing reading and began to look forward to it."

Study: People with pets are happier, healthier

A recent study revealed that pet owners fared better, both in terms of well-being outcomes and individual differences, than non-owners on several dimensions," said lead researcher Allen R. McConnell of Miami University in Ohio.
"Specifically, pet owners had greater self-esteem, were more physically fit, tended to be less lonely, were more conscientious, were more extroverted, tended to be less fearful and tended to be less preoccupied than non-owners."