Category Archives: General Animal

Moving: With Pets (Part 1)


Moving is stressful when it’s just you and your junk (speaking from experience) – but how does moving take its toll on your pets? You can bet they’ll be stressed and anxious too, even if they’re not packing or trying to organise a removal company!

Here are some tips to help your pets cope with moving… part 1: packing and travelling.

On a practical level – remember to update your contact details on microchips, tags, pet passports, etc. – as well as with your pet insurance company and your local vet. If you’re moving a significant distance, remember to find a new local vet and get all your pet’s details transferred.

Updating the tag is something you can do easily, and may choose to do before moving day in case your pet wanders off during or post transit.

Packing:

Your pet’s belongings and foodstuffs – if you can pack these last do. In particular pack bowls/bottles last so that your pet can have a drink upon arrival, as they will likely need one!

If you have a designated area in your home for your pet and will do so in your new home, this can all be packed last so your pet can chill whilst you pack up, and then unpacked first so your pet can begin to settle whilst you move the rest of your stuff in.

Maine coon snoozing on suitcases

Welfare:

If your pet is prone to being anxious in transit there are steps you can take to ensure their welfare is one of the top priorities on moving day…

• Allocate one person (if possible) to be in charge of your pet – checking on them at regular intervals during the move to ensure they’re doing okay.

• Ensure the removal company staff know where your pet is and how their belongings are to be transported – i.e. any of your pet’s things that are to stay with your pet and not be packed deep into the removal van you should make the removal co. staff aware of.

• Pheromone sprays and collars are very beneficial to a distressed pet – companies such as Feliway and Adaptil provide such items for dogs and cats (for more information please click here for Feliway and here for Adaptil).

• Animals can be placed into carriers with a familiar scented item (current bedding rather than fresh, blanket or owners item of clothing, etc).

• Placing a blanket or towel or sheet over the carrier can also help in keeping your pet calm.

• Ensure pets in carriers have something to keep them occupied if they so wish – you don’t want chewing of carrier bars (potentially damaging their teeth/gums) when you could provide a chew toy to keep them occupied.

• Ensure your pet is secure in transit; whether this means entrusting someone responsible to holding the carrier, or fitting the carrier safely into a vehicle, or ensuring your dog’s seat-belt is secure and he can’t get to anything he shouldn’t whilst on the move – make sure your pet is safe and secure.
A big pet peeve of mine is people who have dogs loose in the car – not only is their jumping about distracting to you and other drivers, even a small dog (say 5-10kg in weight) can cause serious damage to you if you have an accident and the dog is thrown into someone – not to mention the injury the dog will sustain by being unrestrained! We wear seat-belts to avoid injury if we were to be involved in an accident; its the same principal – secure your dog.

• If you ware moving far away and the journey is long – remember your pet would enjoy a bathroom/ water break and a leg stretch. Ensure that any exercise is done safely and with your pet on a lead – your can get harnesses/leads for dogs, cats, rabbits, ferrets and more.

 

To follow: I will cover moving with fish, amphibians and reptiles, and once you’re in your new place.


All images are open source, Google images, or my own – or photos donated for use by the pet owners.


If you have any questions or comments; please post a comment below, or contact Ali’s Answers via one of my social media pages…
. Google+ (Ali’s Animal Answers)
. Facebook (Ali’s Animal Answers)
. Twitter (@AlisAnswers)
. LinkedIn (Ali Holloway)

New Discoveries: Myanmar Jerdon’s Babbler


More of a re-discovery, than a new discovery; this little bird was thought to be extinct for the past 70+ years! Previously, the last sighting of this bird was in 1941! It was first discovered by British naturalist T.C. Jerdon, in 1862.

Their habitat was diminished by the development of local communities; with humans building on the habitat they had demolished. The Myanmar Jerdon’s Babbler lives in grasslands and floodplains, in Myanmar.

This bird is small (like a Sparrow), measuring 16-17cm in length; brown in colour, with a pale underside. The Myanmar Jerdon’s Babbler has a distinctive call, which is what led the team to the re-discovering of this little creature – the call was heard, recorded, and played back; resulting in a reply from the bird itself! The team has estimated there to be a population of approximately 10,000.

Hopefully, this once ‘extinct’ species will continue to rise, and make a come-back!

Open Source Google Image
Myanmar Jerdon’s Babbler – Open Source Google Image

National Pet Week: 4th-10th May


This week is National Pet Week – a week to remember your loving pets; past and present.

All the companion animals that made their way into our hearts; the members of the family that we can’t live without. From large to tiny – no matter what species, pets are held close by their families.

Here are some photo’s of “People’s Pets” shared via various (Ali’s Answers) social media pages (if you want your pet adding to this post, share via the social media options at the end of this post:-

New Discoveries: Atlantic Coast Leopard Frog


A new discovery in December 2014, as well as almost 80 years ago! Ecologist Carl Kauffeld claimed this little species existed, back in 1937; however, at the time, received no scientific recognition for it. The Atlantic Coast Leopard Frog – Rana Kauffeldi was named to honour the man who originally discovered this species.

Atlantic Coast Leopard Frog (open source: Wikipedia)
Atlantic Coast Leopard Frog (open source: Wikipedia)

The colourations of this little frog range from light greens to greys, with darks spots and stripes. The colouration of an individual can lighten/ darken according to seasons; so as to blend in better with the undergrowth, to avoid detection by predators. The Atlantic Coast Leopard Frog lives in the damp ground, where there is vegetation/ plants for cover; as well as near/ in shallow waters. The shallow waters are also the site for breeding.

With this new (or old) discovery, the total of Leopard Frog species is now 19. Northern and Southern Leopard Frogs, however is distinctly different genetically. This is what makes this a new species; its’ genetic diversity from other, similar species. However, this new species also has a unique trait, that contributes to its’ individualism; the sound it makes sounds more like a cough than a croak.

2014 welcomed this little frog species as a (new) recognised species.

New Discoveries: Tuco-tuco


Did you know that we are still discovering new species?

Over a period of posts, I will go through a few new discoveries from 2014…

Four new species of Tuco-tuco (small rodent) has been discovered in Bolivia in 2014. The Tuco-tuco is named after the “tuc tuc” vocalisation they make. There were thought to be eight species of Tuco-tuco in Bolivia; but with these new discoveries there are now twelve species of this little rodent species in this area. There are around 65 species scattered throughout South America.

They are classified as Mammals, of the order Rodent, and the genus Ctenomys. They are a small burrowing rodent, with large front teeth. Their closest relative is thought to be the Degu.

The Tuco-tuco is a herbivore, primarily feeding on grass. As well as grazing; grass (and other vegetation) is collected, and stored in burrows.

The Tuco-tuco measures between 18-30cm long, and weighs less than half a kilogram! They are fairly sedentary by nature (couch-potatoes if it was you or me!); however some species are social, others are not. They are a diurnal species – meaning that they are most active at dawn and dusk, and spend a lot of time above ground compared to most rodent species.

Open source Google image

 

National Visit the Zoo Day


In tribute to all the species kept in zoos and safari parks, enjoy some pictures of species that are wild, unusual, rarely seen (outside of zoos/ safari parks), and protected species/ last of their species.

Not everyone agrees with zoos or safari parks – there can certainly be improvements made; but on the other hand, we all enjoy visiting the zoo or safari park and taking in the exquisite and diverse animal species.

Christmas Foodstuffs NOT for Pets!


With only 21 sleeps until Christmas day; have fun this festive season, but not at the expense of your pet. Ensure you keep them safe and don’t let them get into the Christmas sweets and treats set out for you and your guests! Making sure you know what to keep “out of reach” of your pets is good to bear in mind amidst all the fun and activity.

This should go without saying; whether you consume it or cook with it, and no matter how much you’ve had – under no circumstances do you ever give your pet alcohol of any kind. Whether it’s in the Christmas pudding or straight from the glass/ bottle – just don’t do it. Alcohol can kill your pet (the smaller the quicker). This may sound obvious, but I have witnessed a person after having too much champagne attempting to let a dog share in the drinking… So also (always) keep an eye on your pet and ensure they’re safe around party guests.

Cooked veggies are a no-go for your herbivorous pet. Fresh and raw only. By all means give your little furry pet the carrot peelings/tops or the discarded cabbage leaves – just ensure you know what veggies are suitable for your pet so as too not feed the wrong food even in it’s raw form.

Cooked bones should not be given to your dog or cat – as these can splinter very easily, and get stuck in or cut their throat. Raw bones can be given with supervision, but not if your pet is food possessive or aggressive. Some dogs and cats that aren’t normally food aggressive, can become this way when given raw food/ bones.

As per one of my early posts – garlic, onion, grapes and raisins, and chocolate are all toxic to dogs. These are also toxic to a lot of other animals.
(http://alisanswers.com/index.php/2014/01/29/dangerous-people-food-for-dogs/)

Grapes and raisins (and other kinds of fresh fruit and veg) are suitable to feed to certain species; such as parrots and lizards – always do your research before feeding anything new to your pet. If you want to feed chocolate to your dog, buy doggy chocolate which is safe.

If you feel the need to spoil your pet this Christmas, buy pet safe Christmas treats! Give your pets treats within reason so as to not overfeed! Above all, don’t forget to keep feeding your pet their normal diet throughout this festive season.

 Seek veterinary advice if you are unsure about what foodstuffs will harm your pet, prior to feeding it. If you think your pet may have ingested something harmful then take them to the vet as soon as possible.

Remembrance


800px-Poppies_Field_in_Flanders

We remember today, at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, all the fallen heroes who gave their lives so that we can enjoy all the freedom and pleasures that we do today! We remember all the heroes who fight today, risking their lives daily.

We remember all the men and women who contributed to the war effort and aided in preserving their country. Amongst all the men and women, let us not forget the animals who were and are involved in wars; giving their lives and risking it all alongside soldiers, doing their bit to help in war-time.