Thursday, May 31, 2012

Does your cat need a hat?


Nice!

And there are many more styles to chose from at ToScarboroughFair.

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From Arabia to Royal Ascot - History of horses

Timed to coincide with the diamond jubilee, a British Museum tribute to the horse charts its impact on humanity, from ancient times to the present day.



 The Horse: From Arabia to Royal Ascot is at the British Museum, London WC1, until 30 September.

More photos here.

Guest Post: Top 7 Tips for Traveling by Car with Your Cat

Kim Salerno is the President & Founder of TripsWithPets.com. She founded the pet travel site in 2003 and is an expert in the field of pet travel. Her popular web site features pet friendly hotels & accommodations across the US and Canada, along with other helpful pet travel resources. Her mission is to ensure that pets are welcome, happy, and safe in their travels.

 Top 7 Tips for Traveling by Car with Your Cat

 Amongst pets, dogs are the most frequent travelers.  They account for over 85% of pet travelers.  Trips to the beach,  family vacations,  traveling to pet friendly accommodations...no matter what the adventure, most dogs love car rides and can't wait to hop in and hit the open road.  Cats on the other hand - not so much.  Most cat's car travel takes place when they are going back and forth to the vet (no wonder they don't like the car).  However, many cat parents are faced with a big dilemma when they have to move - particularly if the move is a long distance.  They are stressed at the thought of putting terrified Fluffy in the car - traveling for hours on end.  In addition, a growing number of cat parents would like to include their cat in their daily travels.

We've come up with some tips to help make your cat's car travel experience a better one...for both of you! 

1.  Pet Carrier Training:  Always use a pet travel carrier for your cat when traveling in a car.  The carrier should be large enough for your cat to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably. Be sure the carrier has proper ventilation.  Get him used to their carrier in your house.  Place his bedding, some toys, or maybe some catnip or kibble in the carrier and keep the carrier door open.  Let your cat go in and out of the carrier at their leisure. Do this until your cat feels comfortable.

2.  Familiarity is Comfort:  Cats are highly sensitive to the environment and their territory so you want to help to make the car part of their territory.  Place a towel or blanket with your cat's scent on the car seat.  Put your cat in the car with you and close the doors.  Let your cat explore your car, rub around and spread their scent.   Do this a few times a day for a couple minutes and gradually increase the time.

3.  Positive Reinforcement:  Once your cat is calm in the car, start feeding him in the car for at least a week. If play or catnip motivate him more than food, then let your cat indulge in that while in the car.   Again, associating the car with all things good will help make your cat a better traveler.

4.  Introduce Carrier in Car:  Gradually your cat will begin to accept the car as his territory.  When he's at this point, it's time to introduce the travel carrier into the car (so be sure you are simultaneously crate training him).  Put your cat in the carrier and place the carrier in the back seat or cargo area of your vehicle.  Be sure the carrier is secure and away from airbags.  Turn on the engine and that's it. Don't drive anywhere. Let your cat get used to the noise of the engine and the vibration.  Do this at least 3 times a day until your cat gets used to it.  Reward your cat as soon as he is let out of his carrier.

5.  Short Rides:  Once your cat is used to the car and engine, it's time to move.  Back up to the end of the driveway and drive up it again.  Do this a few times then take your cat out of the car and into the house.  Reward him with play time and treats once you let him out of his crate. When you feel your cat is ready, extend your trip and drive around the block.  Slowly, increase the length and duration of your car rides.  Again, the key is to do this very gradually and reward your cat after each step.  Your cat will let you know if he's not comfortable with the speed of his "car training."

6.  Calm Energy:  Throughout the entire process, it's important for you to be calm.  Pets sense your energy.  So, when you're hyped up and stressed, they will be too.

7.  Potty Breaks:  If you're traveling a long distance, you'll need to consider the issue of potty breaks for your cat.  Some cat parents have harness trained their cat.  This allows them to walk their cats at rest areas along the way.  Otherwise, it is recommended that you keep your drive time down to 8 hours at most.  At that point allow your cat to have a potty break at your night's destination.  You know your cat best, so this time could vary.

Whether it's including your cat while running errands around town or a move across country with your cat, making them happy in the car is essential.  Helping your cat become more comfortable traveling in a car definitely takes some time and a lot of patience.  Stick with it and take your time...remember,  it's a gradual process that should not be rushed.  Safe and happy travels with your cat!

For more information, visit www.tripswithpetscom. TripsWithPets.com is the premier online guide for pet travel-offering resources to ensure pets are welcome, happy and safe when traveling. Visit www.tripswithpets.com to find a directory of pet friendly hotels and accommodations across the U.S. and Canada, airline policies, pet travel tips, pet travel supplies, along with other pet travel resources.

Do you sleep with your pet?

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 Photo: RobT 

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Photo: Victoria Hofmann


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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

It was a group effort



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Look at this beautiful horse


The Gypsy Horse  is also known as an Irish cob, Gypsy Cob, Gypsy Vanner, Coloured Cob or Tinker horse.

The breed originates from the UK and Ireland. Members of the breed come in a variety of colors but predominantly are of piebald coloring and have many draft characteristics, including heavy bone and abundant feathering on the lower legs.

There is no exact known history of the Gypsy Cob. It is believed by some that the Gypsy Cobs are descended from a combination of Shires, Clydesdales, Friesians, and Dales Ponies with their origins in the Romani gypsy community of the United Kingdom.

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The cutest thing you'll see today

Three newborn white storks at the Rehabilitation Center for Protected Animals in Poland.

Photo: Darek Delmanowicz / EPA

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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Joe Mantegna and his cat



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Do you know what this is?

 A white-faced saki photographed  at the zoo in Nuremberg, Germany.

 Photo: Timm Schamberger / AP

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Paintings by Vladimir Pajevic

There are many absolutely stunning paintings at Vladimir Pajevic's website.

The following are a few of my favorites.





 

Vladimir Pajevic is an elusive artist living in Italy. He's little known in the United States.

There's a review of Pajevic's work at Grim Reviews, which focuses on  the darker aspects:
"Pajevic's obsessively recurring landscapes, which often show lonely, vegetation stifled gateways, share an inexplicable spirit with the surreal and the strange. His scenes seem so thoroughly isolated and mysterious, in fact, that they provoke serious meditations and unlikely chills."
 I find Pajevic's work whimsical and melancholic. To me, all the gate ways and doorways, instead of being threatening seem to be more a challenge and an invitation to explore.


Sunday, May 27, 2012

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Confused


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Hummingbirds in Flight

I love these little guys! It's always so thrilling to have them in my garden. They come fearlessly close and love to take showers when I'm watering the flowers.

Here's a nice collection of  ten different species of hummingbirds in flight.

Image Source gainsp2003

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The cutest thing you'll see today


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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

"Rug"-ed cats

“They said I could be anything so I became a rug.”

Photo credit: dinkybruiser
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Photo credit: Julie Corsi





Photo credit: Karen Trimbath








Oh look! big cats do it, too! 

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Anastasia and Tatiana with their dog


Anastasia and Tatiana Romanov holding Otino, a French Bulldog, 1917

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