Speaking of Pets

Saturdays at 8:59 a.m.

Speaking of Pets with host Mindy Norton is for people who care about pets and about humane treatment for animals in general, and who want to celebrate that special relationship between us and our animal companions.

Tainted Pet Treats

May 24, 2014
Gamma Man (Eli Christman) [Flickr]

About half of jerky pet treats in the US are imported from China.  New warnings indicate that such treats could pose serious and even deadly risks to your pet's health.

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Tara the Hero Cat

May 17, 2014
"Tara Hero Cat - Official" Facebook page

Many of us refer to our pets as our best friends, but a 4-year-old boy can claim his cat is not only his best friend but his hero.  She proved that the human-animal bond is strong, and that cats can be just as loyal and protective as their canine counterparts!

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Mother's Day

May 10, 2014
ifindkarma (Adam Rifkin) [Flickr]

In the pet world, Mother's Day has a very different connotation from that in the human experience.  Most pet mothers never get to see their babies grow up.  This Mother's Day, consider things from your pet's point of view.   Make plans to keep your pet from becoming a mother by having her spayed. 

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penreyes [Flickr]

The puppies and kittens you see at your local animal shelter are the lucky ones, because they are up for adoption.  (The unlucky ones never made it that far.)  But even those who did make it to the adoption area still may not find homes.  That's the sad reality of pet overpopulation.  

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Autism and Pets

Apr 26, 2014
Xena the Warrior Puppy Facebook page

For years people believed that interaction with companion animals was helpful for children with autism, providing them with unconditional love, nonjudgemental friendship, and social interaction.  A new study shows that dogs can provide very real benefits for these children.

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kishbee [Flickr]

Easter is another holiday that can be a wonderful occasion for humans, but filled with dangers for our pets.  It's up to us to make sure our best friends are protected from things that can harm them. 

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Easter Bunny

Apr 12, 2014
antaean [Flickr]

Live Easter bunnies grow up to become rabbits.  Are you ready for a rabbit as a pet? 

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State Farm

The arson dog training program, sponsored by State Farm Insurance, has put more than 300 dogs to work in over 40 states and several Canadian provinces.  These special animals are an arsonist's worst nightmare and a firefighter's best friend.  Readers of the Washington Post agree, voting the National Fire Dog Monument as the top monument in Washington, DC!

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Puppies and Kittens

Mar 29, 2014
abcrumley [Flickr]

Puppy and kitten season is almost here, and shelters will be overrun with more cute adoptable pets than there are available homes.  You can make a difference!

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Book Buddies

Mar 22, 2014
Animal Rescue League of Berks County [FaceBook]

Research has shown that interaction between humans and animals can make learning a positive experience for children.  That's the basis behind the Book Buddies program that started late last summer in Birdsboro, Pennsylvania, near Reading, PA.

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Routines and Pets

Mar 15, 2014
Rocky Mountain Feline Rescue

Your four-footed friend may not be able to tell time, but don't think they haven't figured out your daily routine.

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A Pet's Nose

Mar 8, 2014
jarapet [Flickr]

Large or small, round or pointed, long or short - a pet's nose is a finely tuned instrument that  the animal uses to gather a wealth of information about its surroundings.

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DiamondBonz [Flickr]

03

Does your pet become anxious in response to loud noises (like thunderstorms)?  Most animal experts recommend not cuddling and hugging an anxious pet lest you reinforce the negative response.  So what's a caring pet owner supposed to do with a cowering, trembling furry friend who is obviously afraid of the noise?

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World Spay Day

Feb 22, 2014
WorldSpayDay.org

Spaying female pets and neutering male pets is the most reliable way to prevent the births of companion animals that continue to add the the problem of pet overpopulation.  World Spay Day reminds us that this is not a local problem but a global one.  And every pet owner can help to do something about it!

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And the Winner Is...

Feb 15, 2014
saly9258 [Flickr]

It may be a Wire Fox Terrier that won the hearts of the judges at Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show this week, but it's the Labrador Retriever that has won the hearts of people all across the country.

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Mutts at Westminster?

Feb 8, 2014
Dave Hamster (David Merrett) [Flickr]

Westminster Kennel Club has a tradition that goes back more then 130 years, but in 2014 it's not the purebred dogs that are capturing news headlines but the mutts that are making a showing in the WKC's   first time ever agility competition.

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marinetank0 (Tom Williams) [Flickr]

When we think of a smiling cat, we might think of the Cheshire Cat, whose beautiful smile was the only thing visible when he disappeared.  Sadly, for the majority of both cats and dogs kept as pets, their teeth are not so healthy.  It's up to you to make sure your pet's smile is bright and clean!

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CelloPics [Flickr]

Smart idea, even for a cat, to have a shelter that is raised up off the ground.  The animal is protected from bitterly cold winds, too, in a well-build dog (or cat) house!

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Pet-friendly Home

Jan 18, 2014
Jennie Faber (Flickr)

Having pets may mean you have to work a little harder to keep the house clean, but smart some choices will make things easier.  And less cleaning may mean more time with your furry friend!

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Wendy Moody / smkybear [Flickr]

A cat's nature is to hunt, stalk, mark territory, but living indoors can limit its opportunities follow its instincts.  You can help your cat live a happier and healthier life if you find ways to make your home more "friendly" for your feline resident.

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Mindy Norton

Fitness programs are better when you do it with a friend.  And what better friend that that furry one who would love to spend a little more quality time with you?

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Sonia Su (Flickr)

Although Christmas might be over for this year, we can still keep that spirit of giving alive by making a contribution to one or more of our favorite charitable organizations.  And if we do it before the end of the year, we get to take a tax deduction when we file our tax returns in the next few months!

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Sharing this holiday with all members of our family, including the four-footed ones, is not a new idea.  In fact, when we think back to how it all began it seems only natural that they should be a part of our Christmas celebration.

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Giving a pet as a gift can be a wonderful idea, even better if you adopt it from a shelter.  But as a surprise for the recipient?  It just might backfire on you and on the poor animal, too.

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Home for the Holidays

Dec 7, 2013
Ian M. Phillips

This Christmas, you can add some joy to your life by adopting a homeless pet from your local animal shelter.  You get the companionship only a pet can offer, and in return your pet will enjoy the comfort and security only a loving home can bring.

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Aranami

'Tis the season to deck the halls, but do it carefully - make sure your holiday decorations don't pose unnecessary risks for your furry friends!

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theogeo (Lindsey Turner)

Including our pets in our holiday celebrations is something many of us like to do. Whether you're staying home or hitting the road, a little planning can help to make the holiday safe and happy for everyone!

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Adopt a Senior Pet

Nov 16, 2013
Mindy Norton

Some folks may be hesitant to adopt an older pet, but the advantages usually outweigh the disadvantages.  Often the adoption fee is reduced for senior pets, making them a smart choice for adoption.  In return, the human gets a healthy, loving pet, a companion and a new best friend!

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Dave Parker

Someone must have a special heart to work at an animal shelter.  The work is hard, sometimes heart-breaking, but adoptions and reunions make it all worthwhile.  So make some time to let a shelter worker know you appreciate all their efforts and their dedication for the pets and people of their community!

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Dogfighting

Nov 2, 2013
American Humane Association

Elle is the American Humane Association's 2013 Hero Dog of the year.  She is a Therapy Dog and has her AKC Canine Good Citizen certification.  She is also an American Bull Terrier, often called a Pit Bull.  Breeders say they are friendly, intelligent and make great family pets.  Unfortunately there are those who misuse members of the breed for dogfighting because of their muscular build and strength.

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