Tuesday, July 31, 2012

'Toon Tuesdays


Toon Tuesdays feature cat & dog cartoons made by the peeps over at Shoebox Greetings (a tiny little division of Hallmark) - where our mom works, too!

Monday, July 30, 2012

WARNING: Fake Flea Treatments can be DEADLY

Last week, VPI pet insurance reported on a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announcement that counterfeit flea prevention products are being illegally imported into the USA.

Peeps, our mom is researching these treatments for an upcoming Monday Medical Issues post and let us tell you, this is extremely dangerous - and can be deadly.

These phony medications are posing as "Frontline" and "Advantage" products. These brands are sold in many pet retail outlets and online stores.

Some of these counterfeit products substitute ingredients that can be deadly, especially for cats.

According to the EPA, the only way you can tell if a package is legit is to physically examine the applicator tubes.

Look for revealing differences which are listed in the EPA's fact sheet.

You can download this fact sheet as a PDF file from the EPA's page on counterfeit pet pesticides by clicking on the image below.

click this image to be redirected to the EPA's info site on fake pet products

If you'd like to read the full story as VPI pet insurance reported it, you can click here - they also list how you can learn to identify the real from the fake.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Caturday Innocence?

Who me? Steal the remote? Why would you say such a thing?!? *blink*blink*

We're participating in Weekend Cat Blogging, hosted this week by Mind of Mog.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Kitteh CPR, dude!

France's Red Cross recently uploaded this poster to their Facebook page.

We saw it first on Texas, a New York cat's blog. Thanks, Texas, for posting it!! (And if you're not following Texas, you're missing a fun blogger!)

So what do you think peeps? Do kittehs make every ad more effective or what?

The copy reads: "First Aid that can save lives...If even kittens can get trained, what are YOU waiting for?"

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Got an Opinion? We'd love to hear it!

Allie: Oh HI! *wiggles pink toenails*

The boys and I want to know what you think about our blog. Your opinion really matters to us (well, me anyway. Who knows what's going on inside Faraday's head....)

So we asked Mother to write up a very short survey - only 7 questions. We'd love to hear your thoughts.

And if it has anything to do with muzzling Faraday, you have my complete support.

Survey Link:


Oh and remember: if asked, your favorite color is PINK.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

"Move along, Mommy.  Nothing to see here.  Really."

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

'Toon Tuesdays


Toon Tuesdays feature cat & dog cartoons made by the peeps over at Shoebox Greetings (a tiny little division of Hallmark) - where our mom works, too!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Monday Medical Issues: Help your pet beat the heat!

Some folks in the U.S. are experiencing a record high heat wave this summer. As the temps soar, please don't forget your pet is affected by this, too.

Here are a few tips on how you can help them beat the heat - and possibly save a life in the process.

Heat Stroke

A cameraman I often work with told me about a shoot where the crew was filming in a home. It’s customary for the occupants to leave while we take over their home (they’re compensated quite nicely for their trouble).

The family had a lovely, friendly family dog who was also removed from the home. No one informed the film crew about the dog, nor that she was being exposed to excessive heat.

At the end of the shoot as the crew was loading out of the home, they discovered this beautiful dog - she had collapsed and was not breathing.

The crew - many of them animal lovers - were horrified. They did everything they could think of to revive her. They administered CPR, wet her down to cool her off, anything they could think of - but she was beyond their help.  Sadly, the family lost their beloved companion that day.

Dogs and cats can succumb to heat exhaustion and heat stroke far faster than people realize. And it can be fatal.

 Signs of heat stroke include (but are not limited to):
  • body temperatures of 104-110F degrees
  • excessive panting
  • dark or bright red tongue and gums
  • sticky or dry tongue and gums
  • staggering
  • stupor
  • seizures
  • bloody diarrhea or vomiting
  • coma
  • death
Please be aware of these danger signals and seek veterinary attention immediately. You may save your pet's life.

 Made in the Shade

Is your pet an indoor/outdoor pet? If so, make sure shade is available to your pet at all times. And always have water available for them.  It needs to be placed in the shade as well, and secure it to avoid any accidental spills.

A fun summertime tip to help your dog beat the heat is to freeze water or broth with a fave rubber toy inside. As the block melts and the toy is revealed, it'll encourage your pet to ingest more of the wet stuff, helping him to stay hydrated.

Hot Feet Alert!

When walking your pet, remember: paw pads are sensitive and can be burned from walking on hot asphalt. OUCH! Choose grass if possible.

Pavement Test:  Press the back of your hand firmly against the asphalt for 7 seconds. If it's too uncomfortable for you, it's too uncomfortable for your pet's paws. Why would you make your dog or cat do something you wouldn’t do?

Do you run regularly with your dog? Consider this: as the days get hotter, you alter your attire to compensate. Your faithful friend can’t – he’s wearing the same fur coat 24/7, 365 days out of the year.

In hot weather like much of the U.S. is experiencing, please…go running alone, and leave your dog back home where it’s cool & comfy.

Chill, dude!

photo courtesy abby on flickr
If your pet spends any length of time outdoors, sometimes - like in much of the midwest this week - the heat and humidity can be so oppressive, there's no real relief, even in the shade. Especially if there's no breeze to be had, either!

A simple and effective way you can make your family pet feel more comfortable is to apply the principle of evaporative cooling.

Soak a large towel in cold water and use it to wet down your pet. (Yes, it works with cats, too. Though they probably won't thank you for it...!)

A Summer Haircut? Maybe not.

Shaving your pet to keep him cool may sound like a good idea, but it may not always be the best answer.

Check with your vet or groomer for alternatives to shaving. The ASPCA recommends the "one-inch" cut to help keep your pet beat the heat, yet still have some protection from the sun.

Light-skinned animals can sunburn easily! And – surprise! – they can even sunburn inside your home while sunning themselves in front of a window in your family room.

Check with your vet to see if your pet needs extra protection. Warning: many sunblocks are harmful to cats. 

For more information on the best way to protect your cat from sunburn, read our post on it, here.

Dogs do not "call shotgun" in the heat!

Does your dog love to ride in the car with you wherever you go? As much as you may love his companionship, please...leave your pet at home, not in the car.

Leaving your pet in a car for just a few minutes can be deadly! Just ask Amy of Sebastian the Sensitive Soul. She recently encountered a distraught family who had left their family dog in the car...and lost him to heat stroke. Their five year old son refused to be consoled. He had just lost his best friend.

This is serious stuff, folks. Take a look at this study on the temps inside a closed car.  Don’t have time to click through and view? No worries – we’ll give you a quick sneak peek.

The study begins with data from inside a car at 9 AM when the outside temp is only 82 degrees. Ready for the car temp? Hold onto your hats. Inside that car, the temp was an unbearable 109°.

Last Saturday's high in our area was 107. Wanna guess how hot the inside of a car will be on a day like that? 1-oh-DEADLY.

Take a look at this video recently posted by a veterinarian - he takes you with him, into a hot car for 30 minutes....

If you see a dog left inside a car, call 9-1-1 immediately! Then, if you can, locate the owner. At the very least, leave notice that what they are doing can have fatal consequences: here are free flyers you can print out to leave on cars with dogs left unattended.


We hope you find these tips helpful. Please feel free to share. Who knows? They may help save the life of a pet!


Sunday, July 22, 2012

The Big Birthday Blow-up

Do I look like a three year old to you, I ask? Well, do I?!?

Bithday kitty is shocked...SHOCKED...that you can't count, Daddy!

Birthday kitty is NOT amused at the extra candle on his cake. Removal in 3...2...

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Caturday Cat Fight II: Battle of the Bed

Faraday: (in best Clint Eastwood imitation) Back off, Maxwell. This bed isn't big enough for the two of us.

Maxwell: uhhh...yes it is. The area of a queen sized bed is roughly 23.5 times larger than---

Faraday: *war whoop* Them's FIGHTIN' words!


Epic Battle Ensues...

Faraday: *looking up* (frame 4) ....uh-oh...

Maxwell: you goin' DOWN, Dude!

The End. 

We're participating in Weekend Cat Blogging! This is also our entry in the Saturday Pet Bloggers Blog Hop. Click on the pictures to go to the host sites.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Today is my BIRTHDAY!

*deep breath*
HAAAAAAAPPY Birfday toooooo meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

You want to write your own birthday post?
I won't bury the keyboard in the litterbox if you promise to stop singing.

(he's just jealous cuz he didn't think to write his own birthday post in April.)


Since Mommy didn't get me ANYthing yet for my 2nd birfday
I had to order my own WAND Toys.
On to more interesting topics!

Here I was on Day 1

And here I am now. 

(These front facing cameras make self-portraits SO easy!)
I'm the rockin'est 2 year old EVAH!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

FINALLY....(courtesy of Cartoonize My Pet and thanks to Oui Oui for telling us about it!)
We present our avatars!

Can you guess who's who? (hint: Faraday's the loudmouth)

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

'Toon Tuesdays

Normally, we feature cat or doggie comics, but in honor of Bunny Jean and Whisppy's Bernie
we're posting this comic today! Bernie, do you have internet deprivation issues?


Toon Tuesdays feature cat & dog cartoons made by the peeps over at Shoebox Greetings (a tiny little division of Hallmark) - where our mom works, too!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Pet Fire Safety - and a GIFT!

With much of the U.S. heartland in a severe drought, the danger of fire is on the increase. In fact, it's become almost commonplace lately to see fire advisories posted for our area by the National Weather Service.

National Pet Fire Safety Day is sponsored annually by the National Volunteer Fire Council, ADT Security and the American Kennel Club (AKC). Since we were participating in the Blog the Change event yesterday, we missed Fire Safety Day. So we're naming today Belated Fire Safety Day!
The apartment complex where Sebastian & CJ lived, Feb 24

We care deeply about fire safety. We have seen, up close and personal, what it's like to lose everything you own - and to lose a beloved pet. If you've been following this blog for a bit, you know we're referring to the fire that destroyed the homes of bloggers Sebastian and CJ. That same fire took the life of CJ's older brother Cosmo.

Ever since that tragic event, I have wanted to design a pet alert sign that you can print off and post in the windows of your home. Unlike other pet alert signs, this one would allow you to customize it, so you can let firefighters know exactly who needs rescuing inside.

You'll find these signs below, at the end of today's post. It's our gift to you.


We also learned a thing or two during this year's National Pet Fire Safety Day, and we wanted to pass this info along to you:

New data from the National Fire Protection Association indicates that almost 1,000 fires each year are accidentally started by pets. This surprised us! At least until we read the story posted by the AKC about a curious dog named Lucy. 

All Lucy wanted was to sample that yummy cake her humans had left on the stove. As she reached up to snag a bite, her paw knocked the knob and turned on a gas burner. Within minutes the house was filled with smoke. Fortunately, the owners had a security service that called the local fire department. Lucy was rescued and the fire put out. (read more here)

It never once occurred to us to remove stove knobs to prevent such a thing from happening. Thanks, AKC, for sharing that info!

Water as a fire hazard?

Yep, you read that right! We were shocked to learn that you can actually cause a fire by placing a bowl of water out on your deck. Seriously. 

If your pet spends any amount of time outdoors - or if you're just trying to be kind to neighborhood pets and wildlife - you probably have a water bowl placed conveniently nearby.

Believe it or not, that can actually pose a fire hazard. There's a potentially dangerous combination that the National Volunteer Fire Council urges you to avoid, and that's water in a glass bowl.

A glass bowl filled with water can have a magnifying effect when placed on a wooden deck. Both water and glass can filter the sun's rays in such a way that they can ignite the wood beneath.

So please choose a ceramic or stainless steel bowl instead (and please... for your pet's sake, place it in the shade!).

You can read more about fire safety awareness at the CATalyst Council, at 1-800 Pet Meds and at AKC.org.  

We've mentioned this before but we're taking this opportunity to mention it again: be sure to have a pet emergency kit stored near your main exit, and think through how you will respond should an emergency such as a fire occur in your home. 

Our Gift to You

For the longest time, we've wanted to make window signs that leave space for you to tell firefighters exactly what pet or pets you might have inside.

So we created these printable alert signs with enough white space for you to write in exactly what kind of pet - and how many! - your firefighters need to rescue.

(We've even considered printing off small photos of  Allie, Maxwell and Faraday and adding them to the white space, so there's no confusion!)

All you need to do to download these signs is to right click and select "Save image as." This will download a JPG file to your computer that you can then print and hang prominently in a window or two.

Taking them to a print shop and having them laminated might be even better!  If you'd like a higher resolution file, please email us by clicking on the Contact Us tab at the top of our blog. 

We'll be happy to send you a higher resolution PDF file - just specify which one, dog or cat (or both!).

The ASPCA also offers free generic Pet Alert decals that will adhere to any surface. Visit their web site to order their free Pet Safety Pack.

Please stay safe during these hot summer months!  

Sunday, July 15, 2012

A Vacation is NO Excuse to Abandon Your Pet! (Blog the Change)

Today we're participating in Blog the Change for Animals, a quarterly event hosted by the fantastic peeps behind the website Be the Change for Animals.

(Among them are Kim Clune, Amy Burkert, Peggy Frezon and our very own Vicki Cook of Bunny's Blog, to name a few!)

This year, there is a collective push to promote a worldwide event on July 23, rallying bloggers around the need for dog rescue.

Why is there such a great need for dog - and cat! - rescue? A recent story on NPR revealed that the abandonment of the family pet has become almost epidemic in Europe during the summer months.  This is the time when many families leave their homes for a summer break that often lasts a month or longer.

Everyone looks forward to a vacation, right? Not European animal advocate groups. These people have learned the hard way that vacation time is no friend to family pets.

NPR reported than an estimated 100,000 pets are abandoned each summer in France alone, by people who either won't take their pet with them or refuse to arrange for proper care while the pets remain back home.

Claire Brissard, who runs a shelter in Chamarande, France (45 minutes outside of Paris) told NPR, "Too many people think a pet is like a stuffed animal that can be thrown away when they're tired of it."

Bringing a pet into a shelter, though, is at least less cruel than abandoning the family pet to a life of outdoor survival.

Ask Amy of Sebastian the Sensitive Soul, who years ago, found herself the horrified witness to a neighbor who heartlessly dumped their cat outside, emptied an entire bag of kibble onto the driveway, loaded up the kids and drive off for vacation.  They were gone over a week.

People who consider this type of behavior to be acceptable need to be re-educated. And local legislation needs to be passed that will allow citations for animal cruelty upon abandonment.

photo courtesy Mink (flickr) via Creative Commons
So today, we unite to blog for change, both in the U.S. and abroad. The family pet is not a stuffed animal to be discarded when inconvenient.

Be the change in your neighborhood.

If you see such behavior occur, call your local animal welfare agencies and ask about legal policies in your area - and if your neighbor can be ticketed for abandonment.

At the very least, look out for this poor abandoned animal.

If it has indeed been abandoned, perhaps you can find it in your heart to take him into your own home.

Or find a rescue group or no-kill shelter in your area that will find the abandoned pet a new loving, caring forever family.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Way We Were

 Maxwell & Faraday: Daddy's Bookends!

Can you believe we were ever this small?

Friday, July 13, 2012


While we're languishing inside our home, hanging over the A/C vents, trying to survive this heat...

Mommy's flying around the country again! Can you guess where she is this time?

photo courtesy flickr user cobalt123 via Creative Commons
Maybe this will help...?

photo via Creative Commons
Or this?

photo: Wikimedia Commons

Seriously. We're so terribly mistreated. She says she'll be home tomorrow, but we're not holding our breath.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Thankful Thursday

We're thankful we have a week's relief from the 100° + heat we've been having!
(Now if it would only rain....)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

'Toon Tuesdays


Toon Tuesdays feature cat & dog cartoons made by the peeps over at Shoebox Greetings (a tiny little division of Hallmark) - where our mom works, too!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Monday Medical Issues: Da Boyz are Albinos! Part 2

Yep, da boyz are albinos, as we discussed last week. Temperature-sensitive albinos, to be exact. That's what causes breeds like Siamese, Burmese, Himalayans and Tonkinese to have pointed coats - darker in the extremities and lighter in the torso.

But did you know this albinism extends to eye color, too?

There are two layers in the iris of the eye that determine what color your eyes are (both in humans and cats) – the stroma and the epithelium.

In most cats, pigmented cells are scattered throughout both layers. 

But for cats who have Siamese or Burmese alleles, (that gene pair we discussed last week that causes temperature-sensitive albinism) there is no pigmentation in the stroma.

And, whereas other cat breeds with blue eyes have pigment in that lower epithelial layer, the blue of a Siamese is due to the absence of pigment in both layers.

Whoa… if there's no color in Maxwell's eyes, why do they appear blue?

For the same reason the sky is blue.

(here you go, moms! the answer to the age-old question kids everywhere ask.)

In really basic terms it has to do with the fact that, of all the colors in the visible light spectrum, blue has the shortest wavelength, and colors with shorter wavelengths scatter more than colors with longer wavelengths – it's called Rayleigh Scattering. Since blue light is the predominant light that is bouncing around in the stroma layer, that is the color you see (shown by the cool red arrows in the diagram above!).

You can read more about it at Science Made Simple.

So there you have it, folks. Siamese cats: living out the answer to the age-old question of why the sky is blue.

Oh, and yeah. Da boyz are albinos!

"Ocular pigmentation in white and Siamese cats", Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 1980 May;19(5):475-86. Thibos LN, Levick WR, Morstyn R.

Comparative Opthalmology, Chapter 11, UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Cat Daddy Giveaway Winner!

We have a winnah!!!

The entry - chosen at random by Rafflecopter - of the book, "Cat Daddy," autographed by Jackson Galaxy himself is... *drum roll pleez*



a Rafflecopter giveaway