MY STORY

Hello, and welcome to my website. If you’ve stopped here, you must have an interest in pets, or maybe you have a pet of your own, or you’re wondering if there is anything here that will help you with your pet problem, or you are just curious. It doesn’t matter. Stop and learn about “people pets”. You will find some laughs, too.

MY STORY

I don’t ever remember a time when I didn’t have a pet, or there weren’t pets around the house. I was an only child, and grew up  in South Florida where the days were warm.   I played outside almost all day, every day.Since I was outside Mom expected me to check on the chickens and ducks, and gather the eggs.

On Saturdays the movie houses played a double bill–two westerns with short subjects and a news segment.  My dad loved westerns; you can guess where we were every Saturday evening. Of course, in westerns, there were always horses, cows, dogs, etc. Sometimes the horse or the dog was actually the hero, rescuing the master from sure death.

We had several cats during my childhood; I had a dog all during my teen-age years. I also remember having ducks, chickens and even a rabbit.  Since I had no siblings, the cat and the dog were often privy to my closest secrets. I doubt the cat loved to dance, but she did, anyway.

Seriously, I have loved cats and dogs and have lived with them all my childhood and adult life. I have learned what they like and don’t like, what makes them sick, what makes them listen to me, how they can be trained to be socially acceptable. Each species is unique. Cats have quirks that make them different from any other species. Same for dogs. They each relate differently to the one person or family that they live with. Animals have enriched my life. Home is not home without a four-legged creature around.

WHY I WANT TO HELP PEOPLE

So many people misunderstand animals, and so many pet owners give up when reality doesn’t meet expectations. The number of cats and dogs that are euthanized each year is appalling. I believe people would be willing to adopt a pet or two if they could find the information they needed to take proper care of them l. I want to help people understand how to take care of a dog or a cat. Cats and dogs give unconditional love. They don’t care how you look, how old you are, or how many cars you have. They will love you, no matter what. People need the love of an animal. I want to help them find that love.

THE GOAL OF THIS SITE

The purpose of this site is to bring pets and pet owners together in lasting, loving relationships.If you ever need help with your pet, or have questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to help you out.

All the best,

Barbara Nelson

My-pet-toys-stuff.com

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My-Pet-Toys-and Stuff: Train Cats not to Claw Furniture

Why do cats have claws anyway? To answer that question, you have to approach it from the cat’s point of view. The beautiful little domestic cats that we are familiar with today, evolved from wild cats that lived in a hostile world. In order to live from one day to the next, wild cats needed tools to fight off enemies and to kill food. These tools were teeth and claws. Claws on the front feet were constantly sharpened on logs and tree trunks; hind claws were honed with their teeth. Instinct continues to drive the domestic cat to keep her claws sharp at all times. So, how can you train cats not to claw the furniture?

Remove the Claws

Your little cat is growing up and she is using your finest pieces of furniture to sharpen her claws. No matter how many times you yell at her, you throw something at her, you spray her with water etc., she will yield to temptation. It’s instinct – she can’t stop it-she has to scratch somewhere.

Many cat owners resort to having their cats declawed, either surgically or by laser treatment. Onychectomy, or declawing, “—is an operation to remove an animal’s claw surgically by means of the amputation of all or parts of the distal phalanges or end bones of the animal’s toes —amputation of the bone is necessary to fully remove the claw.”(Wikipedia)

The operation is common in North America- but declawing is considered animal cruelty in many countries. Another method of removing the claw is to use laser surgery. The laser removal of the claw seems to give the cat less pain, but regardless, the cat has lost the toe with the claw and the end result is the same.

Declawed cats must remain indoor cats- they have no way to protect themselves outside. Many declawed cats become biters when they no longer have claws.

Alternatives to Surgical Declawing

There are a number of ways to keep your furniture from being torn apart by your cat other than removing her claws.

Vinyl nail caps can be glued on over the regular claw. It is not a permanent alternative. The claws continue to grow and as the cat sheds her claws periodically, new caps must be glued on.

Regular nail trimming will keep the sharp nail ends from tearing furniture. If you decide to use regular trimming, you must learn how to do it without hurting the cat. Have your veterinarian get a professional pair of trimmers for you to use. They are not terribly expensive and will be cheaper than a Vet visit every six weeks. You only need to trim the tiny sharp end of each claw. You never want to trim so far back to catch the quick. If you do it correctly, your cat will eventually let you trim her claws without a fight.

Scratching Posts are a necessity for cats-with or without claws. Most scratching posts are a standard upright pole or post securely anchored on a sturdy stand and covered with carpeting. You should probably have more than one. Place two or three scratching posts throughout the house, so when your kitty gets the urge to hone her claws, she can readily find one.

If your cat is shy about using the scratching post, put some catnip in your hand and rub it around the post -top and sides. She should start scratching on it very soon.

Covering your upholstered furniture with vinyl slip covers will discourage your cat from clawing them. The smooth vinyl is definitely a deterrent. Most cats will leave it alone.

Trees, Condos, Scratchers and Posts

Cats like to climb, jump, and run. Cat Trees and cat condos are built to give cats an ultimate playhouse. And of course while they are climbing and jumping around, they also stop for multiple claw scratching. Some sophisticated cat trees have several ledges, stairs, ladders, tunnels, for curious cats to explore. Cats will tire after a while and find a ledge or tunnel to nap in. Elaborate cat trees come in various carpet colors, so, if you have to live with a cat tree in your family room, at least you can select one that will match your decor. Make sure whatever you get for your cat, or cats, is well-built and sturdy. Above all, you want your cat to be safe.

You can make a Scratching Post or a simple cat stand if you are handy with tools and happen to live near a farm or wooded area. Please have permission to gather or cut on private land. Find a short tree with a good size trunk (maybe 12 to 15 inches in diameter). You might be lucky and find what you need in a wood pile. You need about a four-foot-long section. Leave the bark on it. Your kitty will love it. Find a two by four or maybe a four by four square piece of wood. Nail it under one end of the log. Now you have a small angled log to set on the floor. Your cat will straddle the log, stretch out and hone her claws to her heart’s content. you can also build the standard upright pole. Wrap the upright pole with sturdy carpet and set it in a solid stand. Make sure the scratching post can withstand a cat pushing and pulling on it as she works her claws. If it should topple, she probably will never use it again.

Another Alternative

If you are looking for a cat to enliven your life, you might consider visiting a cat adoption center. You will find some beautiful cats that are just waiting for someone to give them a permanent home. You will find both genders, long and short haired, small and large, of all ages. Most of these cats have been given up for adoption because their owners could no longer care for them. Many of these cats have already been declawed by their former owners. You will be giving a cat a home, without having to face the clawing issue.

Training a Cat

Training a cat to do, or not to do something, is a daunting task. Cats are independent creatures and will do what they want to do. If what you want and what they want happen to collide, consider yourself a lucky cat owner. On a personal note, I have lived with cats all my life. I never had one of my cats declawed. I have pretty successfully used the alternatives listed in this article. For a number of years I have adopted shelter cats that have already been declawed. Cats are delightful creatures and are always ready with surprises. Your life with a cat will never be dull.

I would love to hear from my readers. E-mail me: barbaran@my-pet-toys-and-stuff.com.

 

 

 

 

Play Time for Cats:The Best Toys for Indoor Cats

Introduction

In 2017, the total number of cats owned as pets in the United States was about 95.6 millions. Around 68% of all U. S. households owned at least one pet, (Statista Accounts) and you’re just about ready to add your household to that percentage with your new best friend. You’ve adopted a cat and you’re about to introduce her to her new home. One thing you need to remember, once you’ve brought a cat into your home, she assumes everything she sees is now hers, and she is just letting you continue to live there.

However, your cat doesn’t always make the best choices of what she should play with and what she should leave alone. Choosing the best toys for your cat is your job.

Don’t You Become Her Favorite Toy

Your cat has razor sharp teeth and needle sharp claws and you don’t want to become her favorite toy. If you’ve adopted a kitten don’t let her start out biting, scratching and kicking your bare arm or hand. Yes, she is she is a cute little ball of fur now, and she can’t hurt you. But when she is a full-grown cat (nine or ten pounds) she can do some damage. Save your hand and teach her to play with a wand toy– a long stick with bells, feathers, cords etc.that you hold on one end away from those claws. She will love it. When you are through playing, put the wand toy away out of your cat’s reach.

Keep Your Cat Away From DangerousThings

Most people think that cats can’t be trained. They actually can, but it takes a lot of work. It’s faster and easier to train yourself. Put things away that you don’t want your cat to play with while you’re gone. Cats are especially attracted to potted plants because of the potting soil and green leaves. Some plants are dangerous for your cat to ingest. Put your plants on the porch or on a high stand or in another room with the door shut. Keep small things like bits of paper, crayon pieces, beads, etc. off the floor. Cats will end up swallowing them, and you’ll have a sick cat, or a trip to the vet.

There are times when you need to reprimand your cat. When she is about to get into trouble and you need to get her attention quickly, a loud noise will do the trick. Cats hate loud noises. A sharp, loud hand clap, or a rolled up newspaper slapped against a door or a wall will stop her at once. Then you can pick her up and move her to a safer place. One reminder: Never, never hit your cat. She won’t understand why you are hurting her.

Toys Cats Like

Cats like toys that are large enough to pick up in their mouth and carry around. Small toys usually end up under the couch. If there are large and small toys on the floor, your cat may often choose the larger one, especially if the toy has been laced with catnip. She can grab the larger toy in her mouth and carry it around, much like a cat in the wild will carry her kittens from one place to another.

Most cats go crazy with catnip. You might not think catnip is a toy, but it can be very helpful if you are introducing a new toy to your cat. Sprinkle a little catnip on the toy, rub it around on the toy and then give it to your cat. You’ll have immediate acceptance. If you want to give your cat a real treat, spread a newspaper on a hard floor and sprinkle loose catnip on it. Your cat will roll, tumble, toss and act sillier than you’ve ever seen before. Keep a broom handy. When she is through, you will have catnip everywhere.

Toys To Avoid

Especially avoid toys that have beads or buttons sewed on them. Cats will chew them off and may swallow and choke on them. Don’t give your cat toys that are stuffed with odd materials that she can tear apart and swallow. Cats like to play after you’ve gone to bed. They are night creatures. Nighttime is for hunting, daytime is for sleeping. Leave out some larger toys for her to toss around, and put up toys that have loose buttons and strings.

The Best Toys Are Homemade

The best playthings can be made from things around the house. Athletic socks get holes in the toe or the heel. Save a pair or two to make your cat a safe toy. One pair will probably be enough. Open up one sock and stuff the other sock in it until you have a nice big ball at the toe end. Leave enough room at the open end to tie an overhand knot. Your cat will play with it until it falls apart.

A similar toy can be made from lady’s hose. Save up several pairs that have runs in them. Then take one long hose and stuff it with as many hose as it takes to make a long, fat roll. Tie the open end shut with an overhand knot. You can tie cords in a couple of places to give it forms..Use overhand knots. Your cat will drag that thing all over the house.

Finding the Best Toys isn’t Difficult

Remember to select larger toys, select toys with no dangles or beads, put away household items that can be dangerous, and try your hand at making toys for your best furry friend. Your cat is a wonderful animal. She will give you years of love and delight with just a little care from you.