Sunday, June 29, 2008

Pet-Celebrity Look-a-likes

Petside, who's sites I often post on this blog, has some pictures of animal/celebrity look a likes. Some are a stretch, though some are good. Either way, it's a fun site to check out.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

"Out In The Sun" Dog Picture

Kelso enjoys a day in the sun on a lazy, hot day in the Northeast.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Addicted to Fish Keeping

Yes, I'm addicted to the hobby. In most cases, having a fish tank starts out as a hobby. But sometimes, I feel as if I'm starting to become obsessed.

Fish are relatively inexpensive when compared to the costs of many other animals, and with so many varieties and types, it is easy to become obsessive about the hobby. At first, a 20 gallon tank is great, but then you want to keep more fish, so you look to purchase a bigger tank. Maybe a 30, or 55 gallon tank. But after a while, as your fish get bigger, and you get bored of the species you own, and you want to get a bigger, newer tank. With more fish. Or perhaps you want to keep the fish you own, but you want to try a different species that isn't compatible with your current fish. So you start a second tank with a different species.

And sometimes this is enough, but many of the hobby magazines talk about the adventures of fish breeding...which then of course may require some type of breeding tank. And then you want to keep some of the fish you breed, so you need a bigger tank to keep those fish, and the cycle starts all over again.

I recently read that the most popular fish tank sizes used to be the 20 - 30 gallon range. More and more, however, the 55 gallon has become the standard for many fishkeepers. And with all the options available in tank shapes and sizes, it makes it easier to fulfill your addictions.

In my opinion, it's a matter of how it effects your life and finances. If it is something you enjoy, and it doesn't interfere with the rest of your life too much, then enjoy!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Driving With Penguins

Time for a good (debatable) joke...

A man was driving down the road with twenty penguins in the back seat. The police stop him and say that he can't drive around with the penguins in the car and should take them to the zoo. The man agrees and drives off.

The next day the same man is driving down the road with twenty penguins in the back and again. He is stopped by the same police officer who says, "Hey! I though I told you to take those to the zoo."

The man replies "I did. Today I'm taking them to the movies."

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Pet Quote of the Day

"The purity of a person's heart can be quickly measured by how they regard animals" ~ Anonymous

How true it is!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Crazy Pet Gadgets has come up with a list of some of the craziest pet gadgets.

Many are inventions that you probably don't even need...however, I particularly like the leash with an umbrella attached. Very convenient! Which one do you like the best?

The IPOD with a VERY mini fish tank is controversial, and for the right's too small!!

And the number one gadget on the'll have to see for yourself......

Crazy Pet Gadgets

Friday, June 20, 2008

The Responsibilities of Owning a Dog

By Guest Author Mayra Calvani

Puppies are not toys. You hear that all the time. But you’d be surprised at the number of people who seem to ignore this. It’s sad, but many people buy a dog, only to return it to the store or breeder—or worse yet, a shelter!—a couple of weeks later because they ‘couldn’t handle it’.

Getting a new puppy comes with a long list of responsibilities. A puppy has to be handled with care and respect; it needs to be feed, exercised, trained, brushed, medicated for fleas, ticks and parasites, taken to the vet—to name just a few tasks. Before getting a new puppy (and yes, it’s such a thrilling, exciting, wonderful experience!) you must educate yourself, and by this I don’t just mean reading a book. You should read several books on dogs or the breed you’re thinking of getting, research online, ask questions to your dog-owner friends and relatives. In sum, you should get all the information you can before making the big decision.

So, do you have the time and resources it takes to care for a new puppy? Stop a moment to think about that. Do you live alone and work outside all day? Would the puppy be alone by itself the whole day? Puppies, by the way, are not ornaments or statues. They need love and attention, just a like a regular two-year old child.

The question, of course, is not only ‘Should I get a dog?’ but ‘What type of dog?” Different breeds have different personalities and you should get one that fits you and your family. Maybe you think golden retriever puppies are the most gorgeous creatures in the planet, but if you’re the sedentary type who hates walking and don’t have the means to hire a person to walk your golden, getting this type of dog would be crazy, since golden retrievers are very active and need to exercise at least an hour a day when grown.

A lady who lives down our street bought a golden puppy a few months ago. She lives alone and works out of the house all day. So far, I’ve seen her walking that dog once. Well, all I can say is my heart goes out for that poor dog. Goldens are incredibly sensitive animals that need human company and attention, not to mention the exercise issue. I have to wonder, what was in her mind when she bought the dog? In my opinion, it’s mostly ignorance, lack of information before buying a pet.

Another family I know bought a Labrador retriever puppy last year. (Their young teenaged son had been asking for a dog for ages—classic story). The puppy began peeing all over their apartment. Because they knew very little about training, they didn’t know what to do about it, so eventually they returned the puppy to the store. I’m sure those readers who own Labrador retrievers will be flabbergasted by this. Labradors are highly intelligent and amazingly quick learners. Did they expect the puppy to teach himself to ‘go potty’?

To give one last example on how important it is to educate yourself before getting a puppy, let me tell you this final story. Another lady I know got a puppy a few months ago from a friend whose dog had had pups. I called her a couple of weeks after she had got the puppy to ask her how it was going. She said: “It’s going great, but I can’t get rid of its smell. It really stinks. I’m giving it a bath a few times a week but it reeks!” Bathing a dog a few times a week? Who on their right mind does that? If she would have taken the time to read a book or two, she would know that some dog’s coats have a special oil to protect their skin and to serve as a shield against dirt and water. It’s this oil that smells, not the dog. But what she ignored is that, the more she washes him, the more oil he’ll exude and the more it’ll stink. So she was actually making him reek by washing him so often! Not to mention that she was also harming the dog by possibly causing skin disorders and even illness (it was winter).

As you can see, it’s important for a prospective dog owner to be informed, and to pass that knowledge to the whole family—especially to children—before owning a pet.

We talked and talked about getting a puppy for three years before we finally took the big step. By then I was an amateur ‘expert’ on dogs and had passed on most of the vital information to my husband and kids. When problems arose, I knew exactly what to do, and if I didn’t, I immediately called the vet or made research online. I love my golden retriever, Amigo. He’s a bright, shining star in our home, a marvelous gift to us. He depends on me and I won’t let him down.

Please don’t let your new puppy down. Educate yourself.


Mayra Calvani is a multi-genre author, reviewer, dog lover, and animal advocate.

Visit her blog at

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Take Your Dog To Work Day - June 20

With America in love with pets, the familiar TGIF workplace mantra may unleash a new meaning: "thank goodness, it's Fido." Circle your calendars - June 20th 2008 marks the 10th anniversary of Pet Sitters International's Take Your Dog To Work Day

For tips to consider before you take your dogs to work, here is a link from Dogpile -

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Children's Book Review - CRASH

For those of us who grew up with pets, we can relate to the boy in author Mayra Calvani's new children's book, "CRASH."

Describing it as the happiest day of his life, five year old Marcelo instantly bonds with his new Golden Retriever puppy. He bathes his puppy, plays with him, and learns the responsibilities that go along with puppy ownership.

There is one major issue for Marcelo, finding a name for his puppy. After several suggestions from his parents, the name he ultimately picks surprises them, but in reality, is the perfect name.

I can relate to Marcelo's plight....naming things, especially pets, was never my best talent. I had a brown dog named...Buster Brown. I had a calico cat named....can you guess?....that's right....Cal.

Luckily, Marcelo's character has more imagination then I ever did!

For more information on the book, you can check out the blog's website,

Plus, 50% of the proceeds will be donated to Almost Heaven Golden Retriever Rescue Organization.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day

Enjoy your day, Dads. And a special happy father's day to my own dad, who is still wondering why his only grandkids happen to be dogs and fish!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Dog's In The Kitchen

A recent post from PetsitUSA Blog discussed a ban in the UK that says dogs can't be allowed in the kitchen of a Bed & Breakfast.

My comment: I don't know of too many dogs that have ever tainted human food...but I do know of humans who have tainted dog food!

Growing up, my grandparents had animals in the house all the the kitchen, on the table, on the floor, everywhere! And whatever food we didn't eat, went to the feed the pets. In fact, those dogs and cats were sometimes fed better food then I was...they ate better then I did! And here I am, living to tell about it. So I can understand the health risks of not having dogs in restaurants and in kitchens...but I lived to tell about it...and so have countless others.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Bunnies Don't Bark!

Everyone has something they enjoy that othes may not. In the pet world, I'm always drawn to the bunnies at the pet store and even at local fairs. They really are interesting little creatures. As I hung around them I started to observe their behavior. Observing really wasn’t all that tough-- they really don’t seem to do too much!

Now, I’m not putting down bunnies as pets, or trying to offend bunny owners. In fact, it’s like having a dog that doesn't bark. Actually, bunnies really don’t make much noise at all. They just go about their business, chewing on things, having a grand old time. They are fun to watch hopping about, and because they don’t make any noises, you have to look around at all times to see where the bunny might be don't want to accidentally step on one!

In some ways I wonder if owning a bunny is tougher then a dog or cat. Since they really don’t make any noises, it’s hard to know if the bunny is in need of anything. There is no barking, meowing, clawing, or any other obvious forms of communication that we get from our other furry pets.

And since they really don't make noises, how does a bunny tell us when he’s hungry? Or when they need something? Maybe having a bunny is tougher then I thought.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Do You Talk To Your Pet?

All About Pets is pet website from the UK and they recently posted a survey asking if you talk to your pet. Not surprisingly, 97% of those taking the survey said yes.

Do animals know you're having a conversation with them? In some ways they do. They get to know certain phrases and certain actions that go with those phrases. Like it or not, humans are creatures of habit, and our furry pets, especially dogs, learn based on repetition, so it's no surprise that they know our habits.

I have conversations with my pets all the time. That doesn't mean they know what the heck I'm talking about, and they aren't going to solve the price of gas problem, but they do become a way for us as humans to vent, and provide therapy in so many ways.

What kind of conversations do you have with your pets?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Food Banks For Pets

As people are struggling to pay the bills, many of them are being forced to get rid of their pets. However, there are some food banks out there who are also giving out free pet food.

Some might say that you shouldn't have pets if you can't afford them, but what if you get into a bad rut? Something happens that you didn't expect causing you to fall behind on things. Would you give up your loved ones? Your kids? For many pet lovers, the pets are part of the family.

As this article describes, demand for free pet food samples has risen in this tough economy.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Water Bottle Toys

Does your dog like to play with your empty water bottles? Apparently, Fat Cat, Inc. figures if you can't stop them, might as well make it safe. Since dogs can't resist the crunch of the bottles, they've created Water Bottle Crunchers.

Sized for empty plastic bottles 20 oz and smaller, all you have to do is place your plastic bottle in the cruncher. And when it's all crunched out, just take out the old bottle and put in a new one.
The set of two toys above cost $21.95. I haven't actually tried them to see how they handle my toy-destroying dogs, but for that price, I'm not sure if I want to take a risk. However, I admire the invention. If anyone has tried them, let me know what you think.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Bristlenose Pleco (Ancistrus)

The various types of Pleco fish (AKA sucker mouths, algae eaters) are becoming more popular in the fresh water aquarium hobby. One favorite is the bristlenose (or bushynose) Pleco, part of the genus Ancistrus sp.

They get their common name from the growths that form on the head of mature males. These fish are thought to be the "workers" of the tank, often cleaning a tank full of algae in relatively short time. They are great community fish and don't grow as large as the common pleco, making them perfect for smaller tanks.

They prefer a temperature in the mid to high 70s, which is common of tropical fish. These hardy fish will eat algae, but their diet should be supplemented with algae wafers, sinking pellets, and even fresh lettuce. They'll also eat common flake food, but need to have greens in their diet.

They are peaceful fish, but sometimes can be a bit territorial towards their own kind, or other bottom dwellers. They prefer a PH in the 6.5 - 7.0 range, but are very adaptable to a slightly higher PH. It is also though this species likes to have a bit of wood in their diet, so having a piece of driftwood is beneficial.

No one is exactly sure how many species are in the genus Ancistrus, and even experts have trouble differentiating the species. So most aquarists just stick with the safe name “Ancistrus sp.” when describing the fish that they are keeping.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Pet Friendly Apartments

It seems as though more and more apartment complexes are becoming “Pet Friendly.” A complex near where we live recently posted signs advertising this fact to everyone who drives by.

A different complex owner recently told me that he tried to fight it for a long time, but finally gave in and started allowing “small” pets. It seemed more and more people were asking him if he allowed pets, and by saying no, his rents were going empty. The reasons to ban pets usually involve the potential mess the pets will make in the apartment, the potential damages, the noise issues, and liability if a pet attacks someone or causes and injury to other in the complex.

But, for that last issue, I’ve recently read where it usually isn’t the landlord’s responsibility if a dog bites someone. As a pet owner you are the one liable. Just leasing premises to a tenant with a dog usually isn’t enough, by itself, to make a landlord legally responsible for a tenant’s dog. A court would have to prove that the landlord had prior knowledge that the animal in question was a danger to the community, which is difficult, if not impossible, in most cases.

As always, do your own research and don’t necessarily quote me on the above, I’m just writing some stuff I’ve read recently. But the good news is, more and more landlords are realizing that in order to give themselves a better chance of getting renters, they probably have to make some concessions and allow pets.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Potbellied Pigs: An Allergy-free Pet

Ok, I didn't write this myself, but found an interesting article about an allergy free pet alternative. I's a pig....but the article makes me want to get one.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Wanted: The Dirt on Your Best Friend

Here is a press release I was sent recently about a photo contest. I don't know much about it besides what is written in the release.

MANCHESTER, NH (May 15, 2008)--It's good, clean fun for a great cause: Carpet One Floor & Home announces the start of the 2008 Carpet One Floor & Home Muddiest Buddy Contest. From May 1st to June 15th, animal lovers across the country will have a chance to win $5,000 in Lees® carpet and a one-year supply of Purina brand pet food. The winning pet will be named the official spokes-pet for Lees®, an exclusive carpet brand known for stain repellency and a no-exclusions warranty.

To enter the 2008 Carpet One Floor & Home Muddiest Buddy Contest, pet owners should submit a photo of their pet at his or her dirtiest along with a story about what makes their pet special at The filthiest - and most charming - pet will be crowned the nation's "Muddiest Buddy." Additionally, the winning pet's picture and biography will be featured in the 2009 "Paws & Relax" calendar.

For every entry received, Carpet One Floor & Home will make a donation to the Delta Society's "Muddiest Buddy Fund." Delta Society, which is one of Purina's many charitable partners educates and encourages positive interactions and relationships with therapy, companion, and service animals as a way to improve human health and well-being.

"The Muddiest Buddy contest is a lot of fun and it's for a really great cause," said Terri Daniels, Vice President of Carpet One Floor & Home Public Relations. "We are so proud to support the Delta Society's programs and research."

"We are thrilled to work with Carpet One and connect them with Delta Society as part of their Muddiest Buddy contest," says Brenda Bax, Brand Director at Nestlé Purina PetCare. "This contest is a great way to celebrate some of the special moments our pets share with us!"

"This contest is a fantastic way to get people thinking about how much their pets enrich their lives," said Larry Norvell, President & CEO of Delta Society. "Contributions from companies like Carpet One Floor & Home help us continue to bring people and animals together. We're looking forward to a long partnership with Carpet one Floor & Home and the Muddiest Buddy contest."

Entries for the 2008 Carpet One Floor & Home Muddiest Buddy Contest must be received by June 15th, 2008. For more information and complete contest rules, visit any Carpet One Floor & Home location across North America or visit

About Carpet One Floor & Home
Carpet One Floor & Home ( href="" target=_blank> is North America's leading floor covering retailer, with more than 1,000 independently owned and operated locations in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Carpet One Floor & Home stores are known for a broad selection of carpet, wood, laminate, ceramic, vinyl, and area rugs, including exclusive brands like Liz Claiborne Home, Good Housekeeping, and Lees.

About Delta Society
Delta Society is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. The organization was founded 30 years ago by a veterinarian and a psychiatrist to fund the first credible research which showed how companion animals positively affect human health and well-being. Today, Delta Society is a leading international resource on the human-animal bond. A core program is Pet Partners, in which over 10,000 volunteers are trained and registered so they can safely and effectively share the healing power of their pets with hospitalized patients, seniors in assisted living care centers, patients in hospice care, children learning to reading, and so much more. Other programs include the Service Dog Referral Center and the web-based Human-Animal Bond Resource Center. To learn more, visit