Birds are not just clever animals, they’re also loving, while they’re not as high maintenance as a dog or a cat. That of course makes them a popular option, but they are still a big commitment and is it a commitment you’re ready to take?
They are loud, constantly on the move and they do require careful handling. They can give you a nasty peck if you pester them and they’re not exactly the most welcoming to friends and family. When they’re used to their environment you can let them out, handle them whenever you want and place them back in their cage without any issues.
Parrots are very affectionate to their owners and they can live for around 10 years, so you do have to be 100% committed. They can get on well with other animals too but it can take time for them to build relationships, so patience is key.
When it comes to small mammals, there are two popular options; a chinchilla or a rabbit. Chinchillas do not act like rabbits and they can be a little bit more aggressive and they’re not the most sociable of creatures. Rabbits can sometimes be frightened of their own shadow, and with both of these animals, it’s important to handle them properly and let them get used to your presence.
The other thing with chinchillas is that they are mostly nocturnal, so for a lot of the time you may be sat next to the cage waiting for him or her to wake up. Rabbits are a lot easier to look after and they are more sociable, but both of these animals need a lot of interaction. A chinchilla will definitely turn heads, but a rabbit is easier to care for.
Two walks a day could keep the vet away, and the more active your dog is the healthier it’s likely to be. A dog should never be overweight and if it was a wild dog left to its own devices is certainly would not be on the ‘chubby side’.
Walking your dog once in the morning and once in the afternoon will be good for his or her health, and it means that they’re able to burn some of the food they eat, but it’s also an opportunity to explore.
If you do not walk your dog frequently they may behave poorly with other dogs, while they can become a bit too attached to you, the owner. A dog is a not a baby and it shouldn’t be treated like one, so make sure you’re giving your dog the lifestyle it deserves and walking should definitely be a big part of it.
Getting your dog groomed has always been necessary for pet owners, but relatively recently, your options for grooming have expanded tremendously. You can go for the more simple option, which is where your dog’s hair gets trimmed to a length which aids in keeping them cool during the summer and with minimising any tangles which their hair might get into. It is proven that at least this much will do wonders for your dog’s overall health, both by maintaining good hygiene and good mental health. Alternatively, you can go for a more complicated grooming option, where your pet has their hair stylised. While this may make some people uncomfortable, often times the pet will come to enjoy the experience of being pampered. You can also enter your pet into competitions for pet hair styles, where pets which have received a full makeover can compete for the best hair style.
When your cat scratches, sprays or suffers from mood swings or nervousness whether this is prompted by you having recently moved home or have just always been that way generally, well we have something for you. If you have multiple cats that don’t get along this will also help. Feliway is a product which naturally helps cats to cope with stressful situations better and helps stop unwanted behaviour. Feliway gives off a scent that gives your cat a feeling of peace and calm. You can buy diffusers or sprays to use in a variety of situations, including in their travel box to try and help them relax when being transported. We suggest that you use the diffusers in rooms that the cats are mostly in, the spray you can use on furniture to help relax them and not fight over who gets the chair! Feliway is vet recommended and most owners will see improvement within a few days.
SmartScoop is the perfect item for a squeamish cat owner. If you don’t like to clean the cat tray, or perhaps don’t always have the time, or even forget to clean the cat tray often, then this will suit you. This is not only an electric, but an automatic way to clean your cat tray. The SmartScoop’s rake automatically starts moving and cleaning the tray 15 minutes after your cat has used it. It then tilts the waste into a bin for easy disposal. The bin has a carbon filter to eliminate odour. They suggest that a clumping cat litter is the best to use.
The best features of SmartScoop are that:
- It includes 24 no-touch-waste biodegradable bags for disposal, a 6-month supply of carbon filters, a litter ramp and litter catching mat – for those times it doesn’t quite scoop up everything.
- It has a carbon filter preventing odour.
- It works with any clumping litter as the rake combs through and picks up any clumped litter.
- It automatically scoops your cat litter box for you, saving you time.
- It is easy to empty and clean thoroughly and all parts are removable for thorough cleaning.
Owners with several pets – mostly prevalent with cat owners – will sometimes find that there are dominant and submissive traits amongst the different pets. Unfortunately this can make life a bit stressful for the submissive animal as they can be subjected to bullying from the other(s). The dominant can bully in various ways, anything from physically attacking to intimidation just by watching or following the submissive pet. This can ruin the confidence of the animal, making them nervous and jumpy, they can also have digestive problems from eating too fast or too much, resulting from rushing to eat before the dominant pushes them away from the food.
If this becomes too bad, then you might have to consider re-homing one or the other of your pets, to improve their life. However, there is another option – separation.
Creating divisions in your home can help promote a tranquil environment by removing the competitiveness. By installing pet screens, you can keep the doors of your house open, whilst keeping your pets separate. You can also install these in your outer doors and windows to allow fresh air into the home, whilst keeping your pets inside. You could start by keeping doors closed and eventually paying for these screens, but having screens means that the pets can still see you, rather than feeling shut out, hopefully helping you to create a happier home!
If you have multiple pets, you may find one is more dominant. This means that they might eat more of the food by bullying away the other pets. This will risk your pet gaining weight and potentially becoming unhealthy. There are more and more options available now, including automatic pet feeders. There are 2 main options: first to select a feeder which is timed. Your pet will then be fed at the same time of day every day. The second is to pick a feeder which your pet “sets off”. This is done by putting a collar on them with a sensor which will open their feeder, but not you’re other pets. Giving you back the control and meaning that your pets will stop eating each other’s food. This is also a great option for situations when your pet has to be on a different type of food, or even fasting before/after a visit to the vet.
When you have a cat who wants to venture outside, but you’re worried about the busy road, or perhaps the large dog next door, what do you do? You don’t have to keep your cat indoors 24/7. A leash/harness for cats could be a perfect way to give your cat time to roam in the garden without worrying. The harness will normally fit around the tummy and collar to keep secure and so as not to pull on the neck to strongly. We won’t promise that it will be easy getting your cat to wear one… We would definitely suggest starting young so that as they get older, they’ll be more accustom to it. However starting an older cat on a lead isn’t impossible, but will take time and patience. Unlike with a dog, if your cat starts to pull, we would suggest not to yank it back. This may just scare him/her resulting in a panic. Start using it for only short periods and build up over time. Your cat will begin to understand that leash means outside and will start to enjoy the time it gets.
You can feed your dog ‘dry’ or ‘wet’/tinned food. As to what type, this will depend on the type of dog you have and the dogs’ preference. Food will come in a variety of flavours, and just like people, they won’t necessarily enjoy every one. If you’re unsure which kind to purchase, it is a good idea to visit your vet. They will be able to direct you to the most suitable based on age and/or breed. The amount a dog needs will also vary, the larger and more active the animal, the more he/she will require. You need to refer to the manufacturers guidelines or again, ask a vet. Try and refrain from giving him/her ‘tit-bits’ from your plate. This will not only encourage your dog to scrounge from you, but will also put them at risk of becoming obese. Giving your dog a chew that promotes healthy teeth is a good idea. However, don’t over feed them.