EVERYDAY CAT CARE

Tony Has Found His Home

In the past two issues of Catnip, Ive shared the plight of my new adopted cat, Tony, and the trouble its been causing for my two resident cats (not to mention my quality of life). Taking the time to make gradual and safe introductions, I thought I was following the best advice of our own Dr. Nick Dodman. I even felt the relative ages made sense (all adults over the age of two but under nine).…

Cat videos may be good for our health; a key to finickiness?

Health benefits of … cat videos? Apparently, cat videos on the Internet dont just make us laugh - they may also deliver health benefits, based on a study recently published online in Computers in Human Behavior. According to Jessica Gall Myrick - a media psychology researcher at Indiana University in Bloomington - watching these videos can boost your energy, heighten your positive feelings while decreasing your negative emotions. …

When Time is of the Essence

Its clear as day to me that the readers of Catnip love their cats dearly. It resonates in the letters and Emails we receive each month, sometimes with adorable photos attached. Occasionally, a letter will include a reference to a beloved cat long gone - which isnt surprising to me because the bond we share with the extra-special ones can certainly live within our hearts for a lifetime. …

Traveling When Youre a Cat Owner

Are you headed to Graceland this summer, but the thought of leaving your feline friend behind is giving you the blues? No need to check in to the Heartbreak Hotel just yet. The U.S. Travel Association reports that over 49 percent of American leisure travelers consider their pet to be part of the family, and that 18 percent take them along when they travel. …

Best Plan: Leave Kitty Safe at Home

Former North Texas pet sitter Cathy Phillips relates that after caring for hundreds of animals over her 12-year career, the experience she remembers most vividly is being ambushed by a clients cat during a visit to the home. She initially found him hiding under the bed, but says he then pounced on her as she was about to open the front door to leave. …

Pet Insurance: Useful?

Paying a relatively low monthly insurance premium can help you leave cost out of the equation when your cat is facing a life-threatening illness that might be prohibitively expensive to treat out-of-pocket. I cant quite remember all the details, Harry Winter says, but Simone was suddenly getting sicker and sicker, and my wife and I dreaded taking her to the veterinarian because we knew we didnt have the money to treat her. …

Cats As Therapy Animals

After the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, the Boston Athletic Association, which puts on the event, organized a series of therapeutic debriefings for volunteers at a local hotel. Therapy cats are particularly suited to such situations.

Litterbox Lessons Revisited

A pile of cat feces in the corner of the dining room, urine-soaked carpets in a guest room closet - such discoveries get too many cats kicked outdoors for good, or surrendered to shelters. But it doesnt have to be that way. In their scrub-desert habitats in northern Africa, our cats ancestors buried their waste in the ubiquitous soft, sandy soil. Most cats take readily to a properly-prepared substitute for the desert sands: a litter box.

How to Become a Pet Therapy Team With Your Cat

If youre interested, and your cat has a good disposition, heres how to explore pet therapy: First, visit the Pet Partners website (petpartners.org) for more information. Find your state or a nearby state, locate an affiliate group, and contact it to see if training is available. Training sessions are generally eight hours long, often held on Sundays, and are fun interactive workshops with stuffed animals for practice. They are offered three or four times a year. The cost…

Rescue Mission

Recently, I was doing some weeding in my garden when I heard a familiar female voice calling, Jackie! Jackie! Jackie! I knew that this was the nickname (spoken with a slight French accent) of one of the cats that lives next door. I quickly caught up to Suzanne, my neighbor, who was frantically searching up and down the block for her missing cat, Jack. The elderly orange-and-white fellow apparently made a dash out of the slow-closing…

Car Sickness in Cats

Car sickness, an affliction marked chiefly by an animals inability to ride in an automobile for any length of time without becoming physically ill, psychologically disoriented, or both, affects a high percentage - perhaps as many as half - of all household cats in the U.S. In some cases, the disorder and its alarming manifestations may be caused by a fleeting disturbance of a cats vestibular system - the complex array of nerves and other…

Common Holiday Hazards to Consider During This Time of Year

Dangerous holiday decorations. The pretty and festive adornments on your Christmas tree can pose a serious danger to your cat. Tinsel and other small ornaments can be very enticing - and potentially fatal if swallowed. The same can be said for tantalizing ribbon on packages under the tree. Stability of Christmas tree. Surprise, surprise! Cats who climb Christmas trees often bring them down. This can result in a big mess, many broken ornaments and possibly damage…