Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Taking Walks Together | BUZZFEED VIDEO

Getting Your Cat Used To Taking Walks,
Is a Very Good Idea.

Whenever Your Cat Can't Walk Freely Outside, By Itself,
Taking Walks Together On a Leash Is Greatly Beneficial For Both You and Your Pet.

Being Cooped Up Inside ALL THE TIME 
Would Make Anyone Restless And Stressed, 
It Could Even Result In Depression.
This Is Very Much True For Most Species, Not Just Us Humans.

Therefore a Walk Together Would be a Great Way To Battle This.
Let Your Pet Get To Feel The Grass Under Their Paws, Let Them Breathe In Some Fresh Air.
I Have Five Cats, and in My Experience, a Little Walk Outside, Is a Great De-Stresser,
That They Truly Need To Feel Happy, and To Lead Well-Balanced Lives.

Now, a Lot Of People Could Argue That
"It Doesn't Like The Harness, Or The Leash"
"It Doesn't Seem To Enjoy This Walking-Thing At All!"
Like These CatParents Do In This BuzzFeed-Video:

And That May All Be Well and True, 
But That's Only Because It's Something You Have To Train At.
You Have To Let Them Get Used To Wearing a Leash/Harness,
You Have To Remember, Everything Feels Weird and Unknown The First Time You Try Something.
And It's No Different For Your Pet.

The Notion That Dogs Take To Walking More Easily Than Cats or Other Pets, 
Is a Myth. Pure Fiction.
As Any Dog-Owner Will Tell You; 
Getting Your Dog To Be Fabulous At Taking Walks With Them, 
Is Something They TAUGHT Them How To Do.
It's Not Something You Come Out Of The Womb, Pre-Programmed With.
Just Like We Don't Come Out, Knowing How To Talk.
You Need To PARENT Your Pet-Baby Just As Much.
You Have To Be Patient, Give Them Time, and Teach Them Stuff.

Walking Your Cat On a Leash Is Also a Great Way To Teach Cats Who Will Eventually Be Allowed To Walk Freely, What's Allowed To Do Or Not.
Such as; How Far Away Is It Okay To Go. Show Them By Always Taking Walks Within a Certain Perimeter Of Your House. Tell Them; 
"This Is Our House, Our Garden, So It's All YOUR TERRITORY"
"Don't Go Much Further Away From Our House Than I've Showed You Please, 
It Makes Me Anxious For You"
Those Are Just a Few Examples.
If You Just Communicate With Your Pet Often Enough, You'd Me Amazed At Just How Much You'll Get Across With a Simple Just Telling Them Why And What You'd Like Them To Do/Not Do.
(It Can Take Time Ofc, You Don't Learn To Understand Other Humans As a Kid Right Away Either, Give Them Time, and LOTS and LOTS Of Talking From You!^^)

TIP: Start Off Your Walks With Small Areas, And Expand Gradually Over Many Walks.
To Get Your Pet Comfortable With The Area, One Step At a Time.

Teaching Your Pet That They Shouldn't Go Underneath Cars, Is a Great Lesson You Can Teach Them, By Walking Them On a Leash.
If They Try To Take a Shirt-Cut Under The Car, Get Them Out Of There.
Tell Them No, Not Allowed.
Teach Them To Always Go AROUND Cars, By Walking Around It As You Pass.
It Really Works!
Cats Can Get Killed, If They Sit Under Vehicles.
So This Lesson Is a Particularly Important One, That They Truly Need.
Also, If They Walk Freely, And You See Them Under a Car, Get Them Out From Under There.
Show Them That It's Not Allowed By Following Up, And Reacting With Removing Them From Under There, Whenever They Do It.

I Would Recommend Getting a Comfy Harness Shaped Like These Ones

I've Experienced That The Traditional Harnesses
And Single Neck-Collars
a Friend Of Mine, Who's a Dog-Owner, 
Put Me On To The Idea Of Using a Soft Harness, 
As She Uses One For Her Dog.

The Way The Soft, Body-Like Harnesses Is Shaped, 
It Prevents That Choking Feeling Around The Neck,
Which Can Actually Be REALLY HARMFUL For Pets (And Anyone)
It Could Result In Damage To The Throat Of Your Pet, 
And It's Overall Just Plain Unpleasant and Restricting To Wear.
Every Time The Leash Runs Out Of Length, 
(And Your Know How Suddenly They've Excitedly Run Over To Something 
To Take a Whiff or a Look-See)
The Knee-Jerk Tug Of The Leash, Is Going To Be Very Unpleasant, 
And Might Even Be Painful For Your Pet.

Body-Like Harnesses Move The Pressure Point From The Neck, To The Middle Of Their Back,
Making Sure The Neck Isn't Going To Get The Front Of Such a Tugging-Sensation.
I've Also Noticed That It Makes It Easier For Them To Respond To The Leash Running Out Of Length, So They Can Stop and Wait For You To Catch Up With Them.

I've Found That Putting It On From Behind, Neck First, Then Stomach.
Let Your Cat Know Everything Before You Do It, Don't Surprise Them From Behind Or Anything.

When Your Cat Starts To Get Good
"Yaay, I Get To Explore Outside! Something FUN Is Happening!"
Whenever The Harness and Leash Come Out,
Eventually It'll Get Excited For You To Put It On.

I'd Also Recommend Getting a Flexi-Cord Leash
So You Can Afford Your Pet Greater Exploration, and Also Get Better Control Of How Far Away From You Your Pet Gets, By Controlling The Stop-Button.
NOTE: Don't Release The Stop Button Suddenly, When There's a Lot Of Leash Out, It Will Have a Bunging, Snapping Effect Of The Cord, And Might Hit Your Pet.
Just Grip The Leash Gently Between Your Fingers 
And Let The Corn Release Slowly Between Them, 
After Undoing The Stop Button.
Maintaining Full Control Of The Release Of The Leash At All Times.
It's Also Good To Not SUDDENLY Press The Stop Button Just As Your Pet Reaches The Length You Want It To Stop At. It's Going To Have That Sudden, Tugging, 
Coming To a Sketching Halt  Feeling. Unpleasant To Say The Least.
Estimate/Plan Ahead Of Time; Just Before They Reach The Limit You Want To Set, Gently Press Stop, a Few Moments BEFORE They've Actually Reached The Limit You've Set.
Just Pull Out As Much Of The Cord, Until You Reach Your Set Stop-Point, Press Stop, 
And Let Them Walk Freely, Within The Range.

I Find That Non-Brand Flexi-Cords Have Been Just as Sturdy, 
and Work Just As Fine As More Expensive Brand Ones.
Just Get The One That Fits Your Hand (They Come In Different Sizes)
and Find The One With The Most Range (Cord-Length)
And You're Set! ^^

Make Sure You Find a Safe Environment To Take Walks In.
Public Places, Or Grassy-Areas Owned By Others Might Present Dangers, 
Such as Weed-Poison (Which Is DEADLY For Pets), Broken Glass etc. And Other Things.
Find a Clear, Clean Area.
A Backyard Where You Know For a Fact That There's No Such Dangers, 
As Mentioned Above, Are Great! ^^

If You're Walking Close To Roads With Cars, Bicycles etc.
Do NOT Let Your Pet Roam On a Long Leash.
Have It Short, and As Close To You As Possible, 
So You Won't Run The Risk Of Your Pet Suddenly Running In Front Of Something,
Or Someone Acting Else Recklessly, And Your Pet Getting Hit/Harmed.

It's Also Really Important That You Know,
When Cats Are On a Leash, They SHOULD NOT 
Be Within a Range Where They Might Encounter Another Animal.
They Will Most Likely Get Scared, Feel Trapped and Might Panic, Scream, Scratch, Frantically Try To Get Away From The Other Animal.

You Should Only Allow Contact With Other Animals If You KNOW FOR SURE
That The Pet On The Leash Won't Mind, and Won't Feel Trapped. and Vulnerable.

a Little TRICK
I've Learned, Is To Train Your Cat To Feel Safe In Your Arms
If a Car Drives By, Pick It Up, Hold It Close, Let Them Know That
"Whenever I've Got You, No One Can Get To You, Nothing Bad Can Happen"
This Might Prove EXTREMELY Handy Just In General
If Your Cat Ever Gets Scared In a Situation Where You 
HAVE TO PICK IT UP To Save It From Something.
It Let's You Have Complete Control Over The Situation, And Secures Your Pets Safety.
Sometimes Pets Get So Scared, They Just Want To Run Away From The Thing That's Scary.
If You're In a Situation Where Reacting Like That Would ENDANGER Their Safety, Knowing That They Won't Freak Out and Fight You, If You Try To Pick Them Up, To Get Them To Safety,
Is a Great Asset as a PetParent.

For Some, Having a Harness and a Leash, and Having Someone Else Control You
Can Be Really Scary
To Get Your Cat That Valuable Outside Experience, Try a Big Cage!
That Way, It's Less Scary, and They Still Get Some Fun Experiences.
After a While of Using The Cage, 
You Can Make Steps To Get Your Cat Used To a Harness and a Leash. 
Be Patient.

One of My Cats Had To Be In a Cage Whenever We Went Outside For Over a Year, 
Before He Managed To Get Comfortable Enough To Let Me Put a Harness On Him.
Being a Rescue, Having Been Abused By People Before He Came To Be Part Of Our Family 
He'd Had Some Very Bad Experiences With People Having Full Control Over His Movements. 
So It Was Quite a Big Hurdle For Him. 
Respecting Their Boundaries And Giving Them Time And Space Is Key.

Putting Your Cat Into The Cage BEFORE You Open The Door, 
and Carry The Cage Outside Is Very Helpful. It Boasts Their Sense of Security, 
They Get To Experience The Introduction Of The Outside World In a Controlled Way.
Walking Buddies <3
Not Only Does It Got Great Benefits For My Cats and Their Moods.
It's Also Been Greatly Beneficial For My Health, and Overall Being,
Having a Walking-Buddy or Two, To Get Me Out Of The House
For Some Dearly Needed Fresh Air,
A Break From The Hustle and Bustle Of Modern Life. ^^

Monday, 20 June 2016

Giving Meds

Giving Your Little Furry One Their Meds, Can Be a Very Difficult Task.
Just As With Human Children,  Many Other Species Children, 
Also; Do Not Like Icky-Tasting Medication In Their Mouth.

 The Practical Part Of It
For Pills, I've Found It Handy To Take a Drop of Clean Water, Pour It Onto The Pill,
Then Churn The Pill Up Into a Mash. Add Water To Make It Into a Liquid.
But Not Too Much Water, That 'll Result In a Very Large Amount That Your Pet Has To Get Down.
Keeping The Liquid To a Minimal Is Good. 
Then Take a Clean, Unused Syringe.
(The Needle-less Kind You Can Get At Pharmacies, Only Use Them Once!)
Using The Syringe; Soak Up All The Liquid.

The Mental Part Of It
Tell Your Pet What You Are About To Do.
Throughout The Entire Process.
Reassure Them That You Won't Suddenly Do Anything; 
That You'll Give Them a Heads-Up Before You Start Doing Anything.
This Might Sound Silly To Some. 
But If You've Ever Been at a Doctor's Office, With a Nurse Who REFUSES TO BELIEVE YOU When You Tell Her You Need a Quick Sec To Brace Yourself Before She Sticks a NEEDLE IN YOUR ARM, And Then Charges At You With It, Aiming To Literally HOLD YOU DOWN So She'll Get It Over With Quicker.
You'll Know Why Feeling Secure That People Will Respect Your Boundaries, And Won't Just Attack You At Any Given Moment Of Vulnerability, Actually Giving You The Knowledge When Something Will Happen, So You Can Mentally Prepare Yourself, 
Is So Darn Important.

 The Counting Method
One Of My Boys And I, Have Invented This Brilliant Method;
Called The Counting-Method.
I Tell Him; I'm Going To Count To Three, 
Then I'm Going To Give You This/Clean This Wound On This Side, Etc.
Afterwards I'm Going To Count To 60 
(Or 30, Or Whatever Time Your Pet Needs To Deal With The Previous Intake of Meds/Cleaning Of Wounds etc.)
When I've Got To 60, 
I'll Count To Three And Then I'm Going To Give You Some More/Do This/Do That.
I Make Sure To Give Him "Doable" Amounts Of Meds At a Time,
Sometimes, If The Amount Of One Dose It Too Much To Deal With In One Mouthful, 
You Need To Give It In Intervals.
Just Like You Wouldn't Force a Human Kid To Eat THE ENTIRE Bowl Of Cereal In One Go; They Need To Be Fed It In Spoonfuls.

It's Important To Be Patient, And To Stay Calm, Use a Calming, Reassuring Voice.
No Matter What Happens, Just Stay "Cool", 
Letting Your Pet Know That There's Nothing To Get Upset or Stressed Over.
Tell Him/Her That They're Doing So Well. Praise Them For Every Little Win.
So They'll Feel Confident In Themselves, That They Can Get Through This.
Let Them Know That You Will Get Through This Together.

I Find That Holding Them In My Arms, Hunched Over, With Them Sitting On The Floor With Their Butts/Feet, And Holding Their Upper Body Perhaps
 , Or Letting Them sit With All Four Paws On The Floor. 
But Still Having Me Hold Them In One Place, For The Duration Of The Task.
This Way, They Won't Get a Chance To "Escape".
It Might Sound Forceful, But It's Proven Ti Be Better Than To Let Them Hide Away and Build Up a Fear Of What's Going To Happen; 
Resulting In It Becoming a Longer and More Prolonged Experience Than It Needs To Be.
If Your Pet Seems To NEED a Break However, It's Important To Take In Their Feelings, and Give Them One. Before Continuing Giving Them Meds/Cleaning Wounds etc.

For Many Years I Did The Standard "Just Hide It In Their Food" Strategy, 
That Everyone Will Advice You To Do.
The Problem With This Method; Is a Couple of Things;
1. Your Pet Has Way Better Senses Than Humans, 
And "Hidden" Icky Medication, Is Hard To Not Miss.
Which Could Mean Your Little One Won't Eat All Of The Food, Or None Of It At All.
2. This Leads Us To Problem Number Two,
If Your Pet Hasn't Eaten All Of It; But Only Some Of It; 
How Do You Know How Much Of Their Meds They Really Got In Their System?

I'm Not a Fan Of The Whole, Just Stuff It In a Treat and SHOVE It Down Their Throat.
Neither Am I a Fan Of The; Just Opt For No Treat, 
and SHOVE The Meds Themselves Directly Down Their Throat.
Both These Methods Are Very Forceful; The Whole Idea Of SHOVING Anything Down Someones Throat, Then HOLDING THEIR MOUTH SHUT, FORCING THEM TO SWALLOW...
Yeah, Seems Mean And Brutal To Me.

And That's Not Even Taking Into Account The Fact That They Might CHOKE ON IT, If They Get It Down Their Windpipe Instead. Or If It Gets Stuck In Their Throat.
Brutal Indeed.

The Whole, Waiting Aound Until They Least Expect It, Because It Seems Like The Only Time They'll Let You Give It To Them Without Much Of a Fight, Also; BAD IDEA.
That 'll Only Leave Them Tense Around You ALL THE TIME, Thinking You're Some Sort Of Ticking Med-Giving Time-Bomb, Unless They Keep Their Guard Up.
And That's No Good For Your Relationship, Or Your Lives.

So I've Come To Be a Communicator. 
Valuing The Trust In My Promises; If I'm Going To Do Something Unpleasant; 
Like Give Them Meds.
I'm Going To Tell Them About It Before I Do It.
And If I Say; Don't Worry, I'm Not Going To Do Anything Unpleasant, 
They Know, I'm To Be Trusted, And They Can Relax Around Me.
I Also Make Sure To Let Them Know If Something Might Be Really Unpleasant Before I Do It;
Like If a Medication Tastes Really Bad, Or If It's Gonna' Hurt To Get Stuck By a Needle At The Vet.
I Also Make Sure To Keep Their Spirits Up, Letting Them Know That, 
"It's Might Be Bad, But You're Gonna' Get Through It, It's Only Gonna' Take a Little While, And Then It's Over, And We Can Go Home and Play, Or Have a Really Yummy Treat f.ex."
So They'll Know How Much They Need To Mentally Prepare Themselves 
For What's About To Happen.
I Also Tell Them That I Wouldn't Be Putting Them Through Anything Unpleasant 
If I Didn't HAVE TO. And That I Love Them.
It's Not Rocket-Science. Just Like You Would With Any Fellow Human To Make Them Feel Relaxed, And Feel Like They Can Trust You; So Should You With Other Species.

If You Have Any Tips On This Subject; Leave a Comment! :)

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Cleaning Wounds

 If Your Pet Has a Wound That Needs Cleaning, I Have Some Advice.
 Get a Casserole, Fill It With Clean Water and Salt; Boil It.
Then Wait Until The Water Has Chilled To a Below Body-Temperature/Cold Temp.
Using a Clean Bowl, Fill It With The Water.
Get a Clean Sock, Preferably Cotton. Put It On Your Hand As If It Was a Mitten.
Dip The Sock In The Water, Soaking It.
Use The Wet Sock To Clean The Wound. 
Be Gentle, But Try To Use Enough Force To Clean Off All Dead Skin-Cells.
Take Your Time; Don't Try To Get All The Dead Skin Off In One Go.
Use Pleasant and Gentle Grinding Motions, To Go Over The Wound.

Do It, Just As You'd Scratch Behind It's Ear f-ex.
It Will Be a Pleasant Thing To Have You "Scratch" The Wound;
Seeing As Wounds Are Very Itchy To Your Pet.

Go Over The Wound With PURE Aloe-Vera After.
This Will Help The Healing Process.

Recently, One Of My Little Feline Darlings; Developed an Allergic Reaction, Resulting In Eczema.
It Was Very Itchy, and He Continued To Lick The Skin Affected Over and Over and Over Again;
Leaving It So Sore, It Developed an Infection.

We Went To The Doctor, And The Doctor Prescribed Pain-Killers 
+ Special Pads and a Special Spray To Clean It With.

I Gotta' Be Honest; The Pads and The Spray; Not Good.
The Pads Were Soaked In a Strong Alcohol-Like Smelling Concoction.
The Spray Smelled Similar.
I Fully Understand That They Are That Potent To Actually Clean Out The Wound Well.
But Geez Louise!

I Would NOT Recommend It For Home-Use; Unless ALL OTHER OPTIONS Are not Available.
My Poor, Little Boy; He Is So Brave; And He Is Very Good At Letting Me Give Him Meds, and Clean Wounds; But The Pads and The Spray Were So PAINFUL When Applied, That I Could See Him BRACE HIMSELF For The Pain.

The Spray In Particular; Had a BURNING Sensation, 
That Kicked In a Few Seconds After Applying It.
I Know This Because I Tested It On My Own Skin; Which Was Without Wounds, 
I Can Only Imagine Just How Painful It Must Be For Someone With a HUGE Open Wound! :O
It Was So Painful In Fact, That He Would Not Be Able To Control Himself; He Had a Knee-Jerk Reaction Of Jumping Up and Running Around The Room Like He Was On Fire, Poor Thing. :O

After Seeing How The Pads and The Spray Affected Him 
(Which, In Their Instructions Said It Was MEDICAL WAIST, and That You Couldn't Throw It Away In Your Regular Recycling, Because It Would DESTROY THE ENVIRONMENT!)
I Decided HELL NO.
Doctor or No Doctor; I'm Making an Executive Mommy-Decision Right Now; Overruling This Shit!
So I Started Cleaning It With Saltwater Instead.
It Didn't Have any Antibiotic Effect, So I Contacted the Vet, Told Her My Decision About The Wound-Cleaning, And How He'd Need Some Oral Antibiotics To Deal With The Infection Part Of It.

Once He Started Receiving The Oral Antibiotic Meds, The Wound Soon Started Seeing Recovery.

I Have Five Cats, I've Had Pets All My Life, and From My Point Of View, With The Years Of Experience That I've Had, Dealing With Scratches and Illnesses;
Go For The Saltwater.
Just Make Sure You Get The Oral Antibiotics On Top.
To Deal With The Infection.

I Understand That The Reason Why The Vet Prescribed The Spray/Pads, Is Because Antibiotics Are REALLY Hard On Your Digestive-System; 
And Will Most Likely Result In An Upset Bacterial-Balance In The Stomach.
Which You Should Get Some Probiotic-Paste For, 
So Your Darling Doesn't Get Dehydrated By Having Diarrhea.
(Both Times Cats Of Mine Have Had To Get Antibiotics, 
They Experienced an Upset Stomach. And Had To Get Probiotics After.)

But I'd Still NOT Recommend Those Heavy Duty Spray/Pads, It's Just, Hellish Pain, And Nothing That I'd Recommend Administrating To a Pet, At Home, and Without a Vet Having Given It Anesthesia Before Applying It. o.O