How to Prevent Hairballs in Your Cat
We love our cats. They are fun, cute, cuddly, sometimes sneaky, sometimes like to knock things off the table, and then there are the hairballs. If you have a cat who gets hairballs, what can you do?
When you first encounter a hairball it can be quite undesirable and nasty to look at. Your cat basically will vomit up the hair, according to the article, “How To Treat Cat Hairballs” at PetMD.com.
The hairballs occur because of your cat grooming himself and then swallowing hair. While some “hair will pass thorough their digestive tract and into their feces with no complications,” the article said, sometimes in cats the hair gets into the stomach and becomes a hairball. “After hair has accumulated in the stomach and a hairball is formed, it will then be vomited as a long, tubular hair mass that may be covered in slimy mucus.”
There are things you can to do prevent and treat hairballs. The PetMD article offers the following tips:
• Laxatone, an oral gel that binds hair in the stomach so the hair passes easier
• Over-the-counter hairball diets available in certain cat food formulas
• Prescription diets that you can discuss with your veterinarian
You can try to prevent hairballs in your cat as well. According to the article, “7 Tips to Prevent Hairballs” at PetSafe. Some things you can do include:
• Brushing your cat and do it more during shedding seasons. “Removing the loose and dead hair from your cat’s coat before your cat can ingest it is probably the best way to prevent hairball from forming in the first place,” the PetSafe article said.
• An active cat who engages in regular exercise and play can keep the digestive system working.
• Try pumpkin, a great fiber-rich treat.
• Ensure your cat has lots of water.
How to Celebrate National Pet Parent Day
There’s a day for just about everything. And while we have Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, did you know there is a National Pet Parent Day? It’s a great way to celebrate being a parent to your pet.
Celebrated on the last Sunday of April, this year the day falls on April 24. Thankfully, back in 2007, this very special day started “to acknowledge the many Americans who consider their pets to be beloved members of the family,” according to the article, “Ways to Celebrate National Pet Parents Day” at PetPlace.com.
Pet parents take care of their pets on a daily basis by feeding them, walking them, cleaning the litter box, taking them to the veterinarian, playing with them, and even taking them on vacation.
How can you celebrate this very special day? Here are some suggestions, according to the article:
• Go to the park with your dog. Your dog will have a great long walk and you both can take in the sights and smells.
• Cuddle up with your pet in your lap. Provide extra kisses and belly rubs.
• Get out and go for a drive. You can even choose a destination.
• Prepare a special meal that you can share.
• Organize a pet food drive and bring together your community to help pet parents in need.
You can even make it memorable. According to the article, “Top tips to make this National Pet Parents Day one to remember” at Animal Wellness Magazine, consider these suggestions:
• Adopt a shelter pet and become a wonder pet parent all over again.
• Buy your pet a new toy and bask in the happiness it brings.
• Volunteer at your local animal shelter
Whatever you decide to do to celebrate National Pet Parents Day, remember it’s your day so celebrate it in your style.
As with people, dogs can become sedentary, become obese, and lack mental stimulation. According to the article, “Canine Fitness Month: Exercises Anyone Can Do” at Vet Organics, dogs need to be active at least 30 minutes a day and so do humans. “Now is the time to build exercise, playtime, and games into our daily habits to keep all of us, canine companions included, mentally healthy and physically fit,” the article said.
The article offers some ways to get out there with your canines:
• Walk at any pace that is comfortable for you and your dog. If you’re just starting, begin with a shorter walk.
• Fetch anyone? It’s a great game. You can try a Frisbee, ball, or stick.
• Take the stairs, but be mindful of senior dogs.
• Try obstacle courses, which you can do at home.
According to the article, “Enriching Your Dog’s Life” at Fetch by WebMD, while we all have lives that are busy, our dogs are often home alone a big part of every day. “If you give your dog ‘jobs’ to do when she’s by herself, she’ll be less likely to come up with her own ways to occupy her time, like unstuffing your couch, raiding the trash or chewing on your favorite pair of shoes,” the Fetch by WebMD article said.
Provide a food puzzle toy for your dog. These sturdy containers have food or treats inside but dogs have to work to get the food out. They “require time, patience and problem solving,” the Fetch article said.
There are so many activities you can do to help stimulate your dog mentally and physically. It will help you both in the long run.