Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Our Newest Kitty Has a New Friend!

After adopting DaLinda, now named Georgia (because that's where she came from), we rescued another black kitty a few weeks ago. We think he was dumped at a well-known store parking lot, possibly by someone who had to move away and couldn't take him with them.

A lot of people also have the notion that cats can "go wild" or somehow learn to survive on their own. Coupled with a belief that a shelter is the worst place to leave a pet, these poor animals often end up in some pretty unhappy circumstances.

We named this one Ebony. It was immediately obvious that this is no ordinary stray cat. He's very friendly and was approaching people entering the store, as if to ask for food and attention. According to clerks inside, he'd been there for several days and was trying to get inside the store.

His diet consisted of weird things people would throw his way, so he was very hungry. I bought him a can of cat food, but didn't have to use it as bait. He came to me right away and went willingly into the pet taxi I always carry with me. Then I opened the can and we took off for home.

Georgia and Ebony

He is now a happy part of our little family (of 47 cats and 3 dogs) and has made a close connection with Georgia, above. They hang out and play together quite a lot. I checked with animal control a few times and no one has ever asked about a lost cat, so I guess we're keeping him. They'd have to fight me by now anyway... he obviously was not being cared for properly... no ID tags, not neutered, etc. But he has all that now!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Newest Cat at our Shelter - Thanks to Twitter!

When we first heard about this kitty in an online post at, we couldn't resist helping her. She was stuck in a high-kill shelter in Georgia and only a year old. Because she's black, her chances of escaping the needle were slim... unless someone stepped forward to give her a home. Black animals typically are not adopted as readily as other colors and breeds, so they often are the first to go.

We weren't the only ones to speak up to save her life, but somehow, we got chosen to be DaLinda's new home. And we feel so honored to have her here now. It was a long ride from Georgia to Nebraska, and the weather wasn't being very nice at the time (recall the flooding in Atlanta), but she finally made it here, to her new home.

We gave her a new name right away, since she has left her old life behind and begins a new one here... plus, calling her Georgia will always help us to remember where she came from.

Don't laugh... we've rescued over 1,000 cats. If we don't give them names that help jog our memories, we'd never remember their histories. We'd be looking them up in our notebooks all the time. (See other cats we have rescued, here:

She's not brown, but she is our Sweet Georgia Kitty.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Importance of Pet Toys

By Joseph Devine

Although you may give your pets toys because you just like to watch them play, providing your cats and dogs with toys is actually very important. Playing with a fun toy can provide your animal with both physical and mental exercise, and both of these are key to maintaining good overall health in your cat or dog. This article will provide an overview of cat and dog toys as well as show why this type of entertainment is a key component of your pet's well-being.

Perhaps you only see your cat when you feed him, because otherwise he's hiding underneath your bed. However, providing your kitty with a toy can help him come out of his shell a little bit and want to play. A device that you can use to get your cat's attention, such as a string with feathers on the end, may help her interact more with you as well, promoting a stronger bond between you and your pet.

Cats also tend to get bored at home alone. You might realize this when you see tufts of carpet pulled up or eaten while your kitty was playing while you were gone. Giving your cat a toy can provide a beneficial alternative that may distract your cat from eating carpet-saving both her stomach and your flooring. Also, kitty towers give your animal a place to scratch on, rather than destroying your possessions. Noisy toys that can move without your help, such as balls that roll around, can entertain your furry friend without you having to be there.

You might have heard someone complain about a puppy chewing up their entire house: the wiring for the internet or phone line, the siding or the moulding, the sofas or table legs. Sure, a puppy requires a ton of attention and time to train it into a well-mannered dog, but you can help it stay happy and entertained by providing it with toys other than your furniture.

Yes, it might annoy you to no end, but giving your dog a squeaky toy can make it so happy that it ceases its destruction of your loveseat. The squeak can give your dog mental stimulation, and it makes the pet feel like it is in control because it is the one causing the squeaking. It is easy for dogs to get bored at home alone, so you want to give them safe, fun alternatives to chew on.

If you have a retriever, you may want to invest some of your time and money in teaching your dog to fetch properly. Some dogs love frisbees, while others tend to gravitate towards tennis balls. If your companion is rough on his toys and goes through them fairly quickly, you may want to think about getting retrieval dummies used by actual dog trainers. They are usually thicker and able to withstand more playing time than a simple squeaky newspaper.

Of course, you probably can't be with your furry friend 24/7. However, giving them toys can provide mental stimulation as well as physical exercise as the pet chases its toy around. Another great way to make your pet happy is to give it delicious, 100% natural pet food. A wonderful source of this beneficial food can be found at Flint River Ranch today.

Joseph Devine

Article Source:

Friday, March 27, 2009

Plan For Your Pets

By Al Sinden

“Do you know where your children are?” is a familiar line if you’re a ‘Boomer.' Most of us in that generation know the answer(s) to it, but it’s our children’s turn to answer it today.

Or is it?

If you have a pet or pets, have you made plans for what will happen to those pets if you are unable to care for yourself or them and have to go into a hospital or a physical rehab facility or nursing center?

As we grow older, things beyond our control happen more frequently. Our beloved pets are alone and at the mercy of whoever is available – if anyone is. They might go without food or water for days in some cases. In the worst cases, someone may turn your beloved pet over to animal control, put it out on the street, or otherwise evict it or them.

Plan for your pets' welfare...

Talk with your friends, family and veterinarian about what you would like to see happen to and for your furry, feathery or finny family if you become unable to care for them any longer. You may have friends who are willing and able to take one or more of your family into their home. Be sure you let them know about any special needs or ‘behavior problems’ before something happens to you.

It’s not fair to ask someone to take responsibility for a pet that needs routine (and possibly expensive) medical care or deal with a cat or dog that is not careful in its bathroom habits, unless you have discussed those needs and problems to give the person who will foster them an insight into problems they can expect.

Put it in writing...

Put all instructions for your pet family in writing. If you have more than one pet involved, ask one of the people on your list to take the added responsibility of being the “pet wrangler” who will see that each pet goes with the appropriate person. Add the names and phone numbers of every person who agrees to become responsible for each loved little friend, including a description of each pet to avoid confusion and mistakes. Give a copy to:

  • Each person who will be involved in your pets' welfare
  • Neighbors or friends to whom you may have given a key to your house or apartment
  • Your family members who will be looking after your apartment or house
  • Your landlord – if you have one
  • Your veterinarian

Finally, keep a copy in your wallet or purse AND post another copy on your refrigerator.

Following the above procedures will help assure that your furry, feathered or finned friends will be properly cared for, whether as ‘foster kids,’ or as members of a new family.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Having a Baby... Time to Get Rid of the Cat?

Children and Pets,

By Al Sinden

If you’re thinking of getting rid of your pet because you’re expecting a baby, please think again. Pets can be an important part of a baby’s first years. Children can form deep bonds with pets that provide many enriched experiences that enhance their growth and development.

Emotional & Physical

Pets provide a touchable, huggable warm living body to cling to in times of physical or emotional pain. In times of family upheaval such as divorce, sickness, death, or even job loss, children need that extra comfort of a warm, affectionate body.


Adults tend to concentrate on the immediate problem. Children are often unwitting sufferers as the adults around them go through major life adjustments. They fail to recognize that children, even babies, are very aware of the emotional atmosphere around them. The presence of a much-loved pet provides a safe and secure place for the child to feel their own emotional distress without further disturbing the already distracted adults.

Personal Development

As they grow, children develop personal responsibility by learning to properly interact with, feed and care for pets. They learn that animals, like people, can be irritable when they don’t feel good. Children learn the value of being gentle at those times.

Supervise child-pet interactions to assure neither child or pet is injured or mistreated in any way if your child is under age three. (If you’ve ever had tiny, exploring fingers remove a hunk of your hair, or lodged painfully in your eye, ear or nose, you’ll understand that tiny fingers can easily cause pain and discomfort!)


Pets can teach children how to play and romp, then take time out for a rest. Children can learn how to laugh as they play with their animals.

Running and playing is good exercise for both pet and child (it’s good for adults, too).

Children and pets go together very naturally and can help teach many of life’s lessons. The only time you should consider getting rid of a pet is if a slightly older child consistently causes deliberate pain or injury to a pet. Then, for the sake of the pet, get it out of harm’s way and IMMEDIATELY get long-term help for the child.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Do Animals Have Souls?

This article has been shared around the Internet pretty extensively, so I am going to take a chance that it's OK to post it here, so more people can read it. The message is substantial and worth repeating. If any "copyright issues" crop up and I have to remove it, I will. But I suspect the author would rather have this message continue to be shared. So, enjoy, and send others here to read it, too:

Do Animals Have Souls?
By Stacy Mantle

I was talking with a coworker the other day and he informed me that animals do not have emotions. This is just after he told me (the day that I put my dog of 17 yrs down) that animals do not have souls and therefore will never enjoy the concept of heaven. Animals do have emotions and they also have souls, and I'll tell you how I know that.

In over twenty years of working with animals, I have never seen a kitten duct-tape a live human baby to a freeway.

I also have never seen a cat find enjoyment from setting a human on fire.

I've never gone hiking in the desert to find a child that dogs have left tied to a stake, without food and water, subjecting it to a painful death in the desert heat.

I have never seen a chicken force two unwilling humans to fight in a ring with razor blades attached to their feet while the chickens place bets on who will be the first to die.

I haven't seen a puppy place eight children in a gunnysack and drown them in a river.

Neither have I seen an eagle aim a shotgun at an unarmed human.

I have yet to see a bear kill a human simply to place a head on the wall of their cave.

And to this day, I have not seen a pigeon drive a car down the road and aim for humans who were walking around the park.

Let me tell you what I have seen.

I have seen my own cats sleep next to me so they may keep me a little warmer while I was ill.

I've seen my dogs play games with me just to force a smile to my face.

I have seen a cat rush into a burning home not once, not twice, but six times to save her kittens, nearly losing her own life in the process.

I have seen a ferret pull a frightened kitten out of a deep hole in the ground.

I have seen a coyote fetch another dog so that it may get the proper medical care that it needs.

I've seen a dog, who loves to jump on people, avoid jumping on me when I injured my back.

I've seen elephants cry.

I've seen monkeys scream in empathy when one of their own were injured.

I've seen puppies whine all night long when they were separated from their mothers.

I've seen a dog pull a child away from a fire.

These are only a few of the things that I've seen.

To list them all would take a lifetime, and I think you get my point.

As for the soul thing?

Well, it is my humble opinion that if you have emotions, any kind of emotions, then you have a soul.

Now, I can't prove that animals have souls. But then, I can't prove that you or I have one either.

And for all those people who firmly believe that animals don't have souls - well, I suppose if there really is a heaven, you'll probably have the job of cleaning out all the litter boxes.......

And here are a few things I've seen, too:

I've seen a dog pull an injured dog off a busy highway, not with his teeth, but with his front legs wrapped around the other dog's shoulders.
I've seen cats bring food to another cat that was too sick or injured to get their own.
I've seen cats and dogs act as guides for other cats, dogs, goats or horses that were blind.
And cats are well known for raising orphan animals, not just kittens, even when they themselves could not nurse them. I've had some of them at my own rescue shelter, too.

As Ms. Mantle said above, the list could go on and on...

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Petfood Industry Atrocities

Sadly, most of us have no idea what goes into our cats' diets. We trust the cat food manufacturers to produce a healthy and nutritionally balanced product, and that's precisely what they print on the bags. "Nutritionally Complete!" "Nutritionally Balanced for Your Cat!"

Oh really? Do you know what goes into this stuff?

It's horrendous, and is an atrocity to the trusting, pet-owning public. It's anything but healthy, and whatever their definition of "nutritionally complete" is defies the truth.

If something is not fit for human consumption, why does anyone feel it's OK to feed it to their pets?

OK, first thing to do is to read the ingredients on the bag or the can. If corn is listed first, in any form (meal, mash, etc.), then corn is the primary ingredient. Since when did cats become grain-eaters? Cats are CARNIVORES, not CORNivores.

Next, watch for "meat byproducts." Do you know what a byproduct is? It can be anything... anything at all... EXCEPT good meat. Mostly, it's "floor sweepings" from the processing plants (feces, urine, feathers, feet, plus scraps of whatever). Or, it's the mixed, mashed and cooked collection of dead animals collected from some very unsavory sources: veterinary offices (euthanized animals), restaurants (spoiled, discarded foods - not always meat), road kill, etc. Many are mixed in and cooked with their flea collars and tags still on!

Is this what you want to feed YOUR loveable cat?

I was first outraged when I discovered that the "filler" often added to pet foods (for weight) was plastic beads, ground into powder, from the recycling of milk jugs, for example. It's basically an inert ingredient and simply passes on through the animal's digestive tract. It has no nutrition in it whatsoever, and only temporarily satisfies their hunger. While it's not full of toxic chemicals, like those found in flea collars or euthanized pets full of the chemical used to kill them, it's atrocious that it's in there at all. (Would you feed your family shredded cardboard just to fill them up, while saving money on groceries?)

If your cat regularly vomits after eating, it's time to re-evaluate his diet, because he's being poisoned. This will shorten his life. More pets are turning up at veterinary offices with cancers and dying much younger, like 7 or 8 years old. The lifespan of a HEALTHY cat is closer to 20.

Concerned pet owners who learn of this have been switching to either premium products with guaranteed ingredients, or, as I am doing, preparing my own pet foods.

I used to think it was too expensive to buy the premium products. But you can look at this like this: a longer and healthier life for your cat, with fewer visits to the vet (which are expensive). I also learned that while it's more work to make it yourself, it's often less expensive than even the cheapie foods found at the store.

Now, I cut up a whole chicken every day. I found a source of antibiotic-free chicken for 43 cents a pound. Some of the supermarket brands of dry kibble, which are usually crap, can be as much as two bucks a pound, but the cheapest of them is still close to a dollar a pound.

Search around for pet food recipes online and investigate the costs and convenience of buying a good product that will keep your cats healthy. Aren't they worth it?

Pick up my free petfood recipe collections here:
The Problem Cat.

(Scroll down the center column of "Free Reports.")

Also, go to and look for the book, Food Pets Die For, by Ann Martin. Much of this information has been researched and documented in there, in case you want some proof.