Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Pet beds

Where do your animals sleep? Pets don’t only sleep at night but they also take cat – and I suppose dog – naps during the day. Cats will often make themselves quite comfy in a sunny warm and spot in a garden, or on a chair, and with dogs you will often find them lounging somewhere in a cooler, shady spot. If you are not too keen on your pets spending time on your furniture during the day or on your bed at night, then getting hold of a dog cushion or cat cushion might be the answer to where you pet will sleep.

Having their own beds or dog cushion will give your pet a sense of safety and will allow them to have a space in the house that is solely their own.
Often cats and dogs that get on well with each other will sleep next to each other and can share a bed or dog cushion.

Dog cushions and pet beds come in a full range of sizes to suit any size of cat or dog from the smallest right up the larger breeds. And in terms of style and designs you can have great fun choosing your pet’s new bed in a variety of colours.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Some animal assistance fun

The need for animal assistance can sometimes be something far more light hearted than something truly serious. Here’s something many of us pet owner’s have experienced as a frustrating but humorous time when some good animal assistance would have been very much appreciated…

How to Give a pill to a Cat

1. Pick cat up and cradle it in the crook of your left arm as if holding a baby. Position right
forefinger and thumb on either side of cat's mouth and gently apply pressure to cheeks while holding pill in right hand. As cat opens mouth pop pill into mouth. Allow cat to close mouth and swallow.

2. Retrieve pill from floor and cat from behind sofa. Cradle cat in left arm and repeat

3. Retrieve cat from bedroom, and throw soggy pill away. Take new pill from foil wrap, cradle cat in left arm holding rear paws tightly with left hand. Force jaws open and push pill to back of mouth with right forefinger. Hold mouth shut for a count of ten.

4. Retrieve pill from goldfish bowl, and cat from top of wardrobe. Call spouse from garden.
Kneel on floor with cat wedged firmly between knees, hold front and rear paws.
Ignore low growls emitted by cat. Get spouse to hold head firmly with one hand while
forcing wooden ruler into mouth. Drop pill down ruler and rub cat's throat vigorously.

5. Retrieve cat from curtain rail, get another pill from foil wrap. Make note to buy new ruler
and repair curtains. Carefully sweep shattered figurines and vases from hearth and set to
one side for gluing later. Wrap cat in large towel and get spouse to lie on cat with head just
visible from below armpit. Put pill in end of drinking straw, force mouth open with pencil
and blow down drinking straw.

6. Check label to make sure pill not harmful to humans. Drink glass of water to take taste away. Apply Band-Aid to spouse's forearm and remove blood from carpet with cold water and soap. Retrieve cat from neighbours shed. Get another pill. Place cat in cupboard & close door onto neck to leave head showing. Force mouth open with dessert spoon. Flick pill down throat with elastic band.

7. Fetch screwdriver from garage and put cupboard door back on hinges. Apply cold
compress to cheek and check records for date of last tetanus jab. Throw T-shirt away and
fetch new one from bedroom. Ring fire brigade to retrieve cat from tree across the road.
Apologise to neighbour who crashed into fence while swerving to avoid cat.
Arrange for SPCA to collect cat, and ring local pet shop to see if they have any goldfish.

How to give a dog a pill

1. Wrap it in meat.

Friday, April 25, 2008

MediPet SA

Are you looking for pet health insurance? Well look no further! Medipet is an animal health insurance company that is dedicated to giving you and your pet the best health and financial insurance services around. You can now insure your cat or dog’s health from only R115 - R125 per month and you can rest assured knowing that you will never have to compromise or worry about your finances ahead of your pet’s health needs. With Medipet insurance your animal will be covered for everything from accidents to illnesses and Medipet will even help you to set up a reward and advertisements were your cat or dog ever to go missing.

When it comes to health insurance for your pet you need to know that what you are paying for is both affordable and reliable and with Medipet you can know with absolute certainty that your finances are as secure and are as cared for as your pet’s health needs. Claims with Medipet are fast and hassle free, and should you ever, at any time, require information on your insurance package you do not have to hesitate to contact Medipet for a fast and effective response. Visit for more information on insuring your pet’s health.

Thursday, April 24, 2008


Fleas and worms are grave concern for any pet owner. They are not only pesky and very, very creepy but they can only pose as serious health hazards for both animals and for humans. The presence of fleas is easy to spot, your cat or dog will be scratching a lot more than usual and chances are you too will have a bite or two from the pesky little black parasites. The best treatment against fleas is early treatment before they are able to lay eggs. Using anti-flea shampoos, powders, drops or pills can get rid of fleas quite effectively. But there is another side to your pet having fleas that you will also need to watch out for – worms.

One of the most common ways that your cat or dog can become infected with tapeworm is by your pet swallowing a flea while your animal is grooming itself. Fleas often carry tapeworm larvae and these larvae arrive in your cat or dog’s stomach where they continue to grow and eventually hatch as worms. Recognizing that you pet has tapeworms is pretty easy by simply check your pet’s stools. A scary fact is that adult tapeworms may reach 8 inches in length as it matures inside of the intestines, so getting rid of worms, along with the fleas, with cat or dog deworming medication is vitally important to your pet’s health.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Comfy Dog Kennels

The latest in kennel designs are built on the premise that a kennel is much more than just a wooden box – kennels are now being designed as miniature homes for your dogs and for their ultimate comfort. Whether your dog sleeps outdoors or inside you will want to have one an ultimate kennel to make them feel at home and very cosy in the coming winter months.

Important things to keep in the forefront of your mind when buying or building kennels are the comfort of your dog, the sanitation of the kennel and the practicality of being able to keep the kennel clean. You also need to think about where you will be keeping your dog kennels.

If your dog’s kennel is outside then one of the first things you need to do is to ensure that the kennel is wind and water proof. There are many ranges of kennels on the market that are designed with the weather in mind, and so finding one that is wind and water proof should not be a hassle. If you already have a kennel, or have a wooden kennel and need to make it wind and water proof there are ways and means of doing this such as lining the kennels with waterproof materials and using sealants on any cracks or gaps. But do keep in mind the need for fresh air to still be able to circulate through the kennel.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Your pet's vet

Your animal’s vet is one of the most important people in your pet’s life. Aside from you, your animal’s vet is their best connection to great care and health support. Choosing your animal’s vet is much like choosing your own doctor – your vet needs to be in reasonable proximity to your own house in case of emergencies, if your pet needs any special sort of medical treatment you need to be sure that their vet can provide and you need to be comfortable with your vet choice as somebody who you can entrust with your pet’s health.

Taking your animal to the vet can be somewhat of a distressing occasion for your cat or dog, but going to the vet is not something that you should put off or avoid just because your animal does not like it. In the short and long run, taking your cat or dog to see a vet is the best thing for them when you have a concern about their health. However, you do not have to go to the vet for every little concern – there are certain things you can just call your vet about or you can ask a vet through the Medipet blog site for information or advice before going to see a vet.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Pet Holiday

With the plethora of public holidays and long weekends coming up in the next couple of weeks you may be thinking of getting away from the house and work for a little while. And when we are thinking of going away, one of the first things we as pet owners need to think about and plan for is a safe and secure place for our pets to stay. When we take a break from the day to day life it would be nice to be able to treat our cats and dogs as well with their very own pet holiday. Treating your animal is simple – they love company, and chances are they love your company over and above anybody else’s. So why not take your cat or dog with you when you take that well deserved trip or break, so that they can be a part of your fun get away and have a pet holiday of their own?

There are many hotels, guest houses and self-catering holiday houses that are pet friendly and actually allow people to bring their pets along with them on holiday. So find out when you are looking around to book accommodation if the places are pet friendly and let you and your pet holiday together!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Breed Profile: Siamese Cats

Siamese cats and kittens are renowned for their elegance and extraordinary regal look. The Siamese cats appealed to the Egyptians for this very reason and were held as sacred and respected animals in the Egyptian culture from the days of mighty pharaohs and beyond.

Their very specific and unique colouring and patterning makes the Siamese cat an unusual and unmistakable breed. The cats have a cream colour base coat that can differ in shade and texture. The points of the Siamese cat, that is their tails, faces, ears and paws are darker and can range from a light brown – notably darker than the cream base to a rich chocolate and dark brown. Siamese kittens can be born looking quite plain in colour, they are often seemingly a plain cream or light brown but their points do take on a darker colour as they grow older. The Siamese cat’s coat also seems to darken with age and the changes in coat colour have also been known to change with changes in their diets.

Siamese cats and kittens are gorgeous animals and make wonderful pets because of both their visual appeal as well their calm temperaments. They can be fussy cats and some are renowned to have what is described as more of a screech than a meow.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Some animal word fun

Animals play a large part in our everyday lives and when it comes to the borders between humans and animals the lines are sometimes blurry – at least they blur when it comes to the descriptive ways of describing a person’s character or behaviour. Here are a few words that we use in day to day speech as common place aphorisms that are actually drawn from a strong animal connection:

From “ass” (as in the donkey) we get the word asinine, which is used to refer to person’s stubbornness or their knack for being as notoriously difficult as an ass. If a dancer is notably graceful and flexible in their moves then we say that they move with a feline grace, referring of course to the fluid and particular elegant movements exemplified by cats. If somebody is extremely slow and frequently late you can candidly call them chelonian – as they share a common trait with the tortoise. And the next time someone is rude or generally ill-mannered you can heartily refer to them as being porcine – that is acting like a pig.

We often use animals and animal related words to concretely describe a person’s attitude or behaviour and the wonders of the connections between humans and animals seem to be ever surprising and never ending.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Puppy Adoption

Adopting a new pet is extremely exciting and loving an animal is a very fulfilling experience. Choosing where to get your puppy from and what sort of dog you want are important things to think about when you are venturing into puppy adoption. Sometimes the dogs make all these choices easy for us by just being cute and by just being in the right place at the right time.
There are many happy pet owners who will testify to never having intended on a certain dog or even on a dog at all, but when their eyes met with the most gorgeous set of puppy eyes they just knew it was a match that was just meant to be.

Here are some practical aspects to puppy adoption that you should keep in
• Choose a breed of dog that is suited to your home space and garden size
• Spend quite a lot of time with your puppy in the first few days in its
new home, it will need to come accustomed to all the new things, people and smells before it will really settle in
• Be sure to remember to get your puppy inoculated
• Have fun, set rules in place early on but you don’t have to be too strict - the most important thing about having a pet is to enjoy its company and share unconditional love

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Health Insurance

Why and when you should get health insurance are two very important questions to ask yourself and your insurer before your take out any insurance cover. And when it comes to your pet’s health cover these are still the two primary questions of importance. With your pet and their health as your number one priority you need to know that your insurance package will be what your need when you need it without giving you any hassles.

Medipet can assure you that they will be there when you need them to be and will be there for you and your pet with the right insurance cover as you need it. Medipet offers you comprehensive health insurance that will cover your dog and/or cat for their specific health requirements.

Medipet also takes health insurance that extra step further and will be right by your side to offer their help if your beloved animal were ever to go missing. Medipet will help you to pay for a reward for up to R1000 per annum for your dogs and will also pay out for advertising to help you find your missing pet.

With health insurance cover from Medipet you can have peace of mind and be sure that your pet’s health cover is in good hands.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Another kittens scam

Last week we spoke about the tragedy of the Cameroon animal scam with English bulldogs, while this affects us very sorely there is another and more horrid animal scam that is quickly becoming a part of the everyday experience here in South Africa. Along with the usual scams another phenomenon that has begun to rise in South Africa is people who stand at robots selling off kittens and puppies. This is not only illegal but is also potentially harmful and very traumatic for the young animals.

The sellers of the animals stand at robots and try to sell of the pets to drivers passing by are standing at the red light. There are obvious dangers implicit in this and a lot of these scams also involve threats that the puppy or kittens will be killed if not sold. The sellers have been known to demand anything from R50 to R500 for the animals.

If you do see somebody selling pets on the roadside or at robots and you think the animals’ life is in danger try to get the animal from the seller – do not put yourself in an awkward to dangerous position though – your best option is to give the SPCA or another rescue centre a call and they will send someone out to handle the situation and rescue the puppy or kittens.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Animal Scams: beware!

A recent animal scam that has been reported is the selling off English Bull dogs and puppies that presumably do not exist. The scammers tell you about the dogs and then inform you that the dogs are in Cameroon and payment for the dogs and puppies is needed ahead of you receiving the dogs. The scammers front as different companies that deal with the transportation of pets and once a person shows interest in the dogs or puppies they tell you that payment is needed upfront and that your dog will be sent to you by the fronting pet transport companies. Your dog however never arrives, your money is never seen and the companies are never heard from again.

Watch out for these and other animal scams, they can cost you a lot of time and money and certain pet scams that involve actual animals can prove to be harmful to the pets. When you do look for a new pet make sure that you are dealing with legitimate pet breeders and try to see the pets before you actually make any payments.

Animal scams are everywhere and you need to be aware of the different ways in which scammers feed off of animals’ needs and your love for animals.
Let people know about these and other scams and help to protect yourself as well as the animals.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Breed profile on the Anatolian Shepherd dog

The Anatolian Shepherd dog originates from the regions of Turkey and Asia Minor and is a low grooming mainatinance guard dog. The Anatolian Shepherd dog is a large breed that can grow to approximately has been specifically trained and used for years in the role of shepherding and protecting farmer’s livestock. As a fiercely loyal guard dog these dogs have been used for years as guards to livestock herds and as companions to shepherds. This means that they make great protectors but need an owner that can lead and be strong and gauge the dogs the responses to new and unknown people. For this reason early training from puppyhood is extremely necessary.

The Anatolian reaches full maturity at three years of age and reaches between 40 and 60 kilograms with a shoulder length of 73 centimeters at the shoulder for females and 68 centimeters at the shoulder for males. The average lifespan is 11-13 years. Notable colour and markings is a fawn colour coat with black mask like patterning over the face. Other known Anatolian colouring includes white, pinto and brindle. Grooming maintenance for the Anatolian is quite low and easily manageable as the only time the dog really needs extra attention is with brushing during the molting seasons.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Pet Insurance Packages

Insurance is a word that strikes two reactions in people – one, it acts as a word of safety because a good insurance package will be there for your when you are most in need of it. Secondly, the cost of an insurance package is in the forefront of thought when it comes to insurance cover.
With the benefits of Medipet pet insurance being extremely affordable you only have to focus on the primary thought about what your pet insurance will offer to you and to your pet.

By choosing Medipet as your lifelong insurance provider you will receive ongoing cover which is ideal for owners concerned about their pets being involved in accidents or developing a long-term, chronic or reoccurring illness. Once your pet is covered by a Medipet insurance package your cat or dog will continue to be covered for the rest of their life.

An insurance package with Medipet costs as little as R115 per month for cats and only R125 per month for dogs. The cover that you and your pet will receive is extensive and ranges from illness to accidents and Medipet will even help you to cover the costs to find your cat or dog if they were ever to go missing.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Dog health and exercise

Exercising your pet need not be a chore that you feel forced into doing.
Doing your own exercise and exercising your dog is essential to maintain a good bill of health for you and a good bill for your pooches dog health too and it can be more fun than pain! Good exercise regimens for dogs include swimming, running and playing. Most importantly is playing, it’s a form of exercise that is well disguised for both you and for your dog.
Playing also stimulates their senses and by playing with other animals your pet will thrive on the social interaction.

If neither you nor your dog has exercised for a while then start out slowly and go for leisurely 20-30 minute walks around the neighbourhood.
Slowly as both of your fitness levels increase you can start to pick up the pace with some jogging and extend the time of your walks. Along with the exercise, the change of scenery and the time spent outdoors will do wonders for you and for your pet’s dog health.

Making sure that your pet’s dog health is where it is meant to be can be a hassle but as with regular exercise it does not have to be a problem at all.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Dog training basics - get to know your dog!

If you have a problem with your new puppy or dog because he or she keeps on grabbing at things and pulling things off of tables then take a look at he problem from a new point of view. Instead of leaping into specialised dog training classes just get down onto your hands and knees and move around your house for a while to get to see the world from your dog’s point of view. It may feel slightly silly at first but it works. Soon you will notice what it is and how it is that certain things catch your dog’s eye.

Seeing your house from your dog’s perspective of the world you will find what is not only eye catching to your dog but you can also get a very good idea as to what sort of things around the home may be potentially hazardous to your dog. After this little self dog training exercise you might have found electric cables and other cords that could trip your dog up, that they could get tangled in or that they could chew. You will also notice the heights of chairs and tables from their perspective and will have a much better idea as to where and where not to leave your valuable possessions that you would rather keep unchewed and out of the garden.

Kimble: Whiskas Mr March!

You may recognize this photograph from a few weeks ago as Kimble, Julie's gorgeous kitten. Well, Kimble is not only popular on the MediPet Blog - he has been voted Mr. March on the Whiskas Kitten Site! You can view his entry at You can sign up your own fluffy friends at and enter the competition to win some delicious Whiskas goodies for your kitty to enjoy. We are all so impressed with Kimble and we can't wait to hear what he gets up to next!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Adopt a pet today and help save a life

Adopting an animal means that you are getting a loving friend and a chance to show your love to an adorable pet. If you are thinking of adopting a puppy or a kitten do you have ideas about the age or type of kitten or puppy you are going to be looking for? When it comes to small adorable animals we can often fall them without having to give too much thought into what they are in terms of breed, size or age. This is okay – the love and care that you will share with the animal is the number one priority in kitten or puppy adoption.

Puppy adoption or kitten adoption may need to be thought out a bit more though if you are looking for something specific in your new pet. If you have a particular fondness for a certain breed, are looking for a dog that will stay small into adulthood or if you are looking for a watchdog or a lap cat there is the perfect animal out there just for you! Talking to vets, asking around with people you know and contacting shelters or breed associations are some of the best ways to ensure that you find the puppy and/or kitten you are looking for.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Pets need toys too!

As annoying and as time consuming as it may be I am generally quite amused by my cat’s shredding up of a toilet roll or newspaper. However, it can be a pain and a great hassle to clean up and may not seem worth the effort if you are not as amused by the mischief as I am. You might think that distracting your cat or kitten from the toilet rolls, tissue boxes or newspapers with a pet shop toy may do the trick to stop them from shredding but in some cases you may find that the newspaper and the tissues still appeal to your cat far more than a specially designed ‘cat toy’.

In this case you need to put some ingenuity into practice. Start by making the newspapers inaccessible and by turning your tissue boxes upside down and put the toilet roll on the holder so the flap doesn’t hang down but rather rests on top of the roll. This will make it a lot harder for your cat to get a hold of the toilet paper. And after a few unsuccessful attempts to get to these shredable items your cat may stop trying, return to playing with their pet shop toys and you will be able to turn your tissue box over again.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Pet holiday time!

Looking for a pet holiday? – do you just want a break from being at home and taking care of the day to day routines and need somewhere safe for your animals to be while you are away? Well there are many kennels and catteries right across South Africa and there are sure to be some in your vicinity but when you are looking for the best place for your animal to stay for their pet holiday there are some things that you should look into.

Here are two aspects of your pet’s holiday needs to look out for when choosing a kennel or cattery for your pet: find out whether or not your pet will be getting the necessary exercise and attention. Your dog will still need to be playing and burning off their energy with exercise and walking so find out from kennels if they do offer dog walking as part of their services. A second concern is when it comes to house trained dogs and cats – they may not want to do their business indoors and they might not be used to using a litter tray so they will need to be let out to an outdoor area on a daily basis during their pet holiday stay.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Pet Assistance is closer than you think!

Pet assistance comes in a range of forms and stretches from assistance in areas of house training, puppy training and health and medical related matters. If you have a new puppy and are looking for advice on integrating them into your household or if you are looking for information about what your cat or dog should be eating the best thing to do is to ask someone who is experienced and knowledgeable about the particularities of pets.
Ideally your vet would be the best person to go to for reliable pet assistance.

Pet assistance is often something that involves little questions and is about things that you do not necessarily want to run off to your vet to ask. So when you have a little concern or are just looking for an opinion and some good advice you can also send our Medipet team a question.
Medipet also has a vet nurse on standby to answer to any of your emailed questions.

So if you do need some pet assistance or have any questions regarding your animal, their health or pet insurance do not hesitate to send the Medipet blog team an email. And for more pet insurance specific advice take a look at the Medipet website at and send Medipet a direct email to ask about their pet insurance offers.