• Health & Wellness

    The skinny on green tripe

    I first learned the word “tripe” from that episode of The Simpsons where Lisa becomes vegetarian. People usually quote “you don’t win friends with salad,” but what stuck with me is “you can’t seriously expect us to swallow that tripe?!” and then the kids are served tripe. That joke went over my head back then as I hadn’t yet experienced Vietnamese Pho, and so didn’t recognize tripe as a legitimate ingredient, nor understand what exactly it is. Now I know better. Tripe is considered “offal,” which is the viscera or trimmings of a butchered animal.  Specifically, tripe is the stomach lining from cows and other ruminant or grazing animals. This trait…

  • Rescue & Adoption

    Rehoming pets

    It’s a devastating decision to have to give up a pet, but sometimes it’s necessary; life and circumstances have a way of keeping us on our toes. The pandemic is a perfect example; many people who had plenty of time and money for pets during the quarantine period of the Covid-19 pandemic now have little to none of either. Perhaps you’re moving abroad and lengthy quarantine mandates would be cruel to your companion, or you’re moving to an area that has breed-specific legislation in place and you cannot bring your pet with you. Some buildings and landlords just won’t allow pets.  The list of why re-homing is necessary can be…

  • Feral Colonies,  Health & Wellness,  Safety

    Gimme Shelter

    I’m not a big fan of the Rolling Stones song “Gimme Shelter,” but it’s a good notion. We all need it, right? The safety of a roof, or a tent, or a cave. A warm radiator or open (and controlled!) fire. My version of shelter includes plumbing and snacks, but the more primal and necessary need that shelter affords us is safety. Safety from the elements. Safety from predators. A kind of sanctuary. This is the time of year when we need to think about the strays and feral colonies out there, of which there are plenty. People often feed strays but they can’t welcome every stray cat into their…

  • Ideas

    Safety is No Accident

    It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Sure, it’s a little warm and it probably won’t be a white Christmas, but the spirit remains the same; we celebrate one another and the spirit of togetherness regardless of which holidays we observe. Some of the most fun we’ll have this holiday season is with our pet companions. Who doesn’t like filling their stockings with treats and spoiling them with new toys and outfits?! But it’s important to exercise good judgment when doting on our fur babies. First and foremost, it’s imperative that they be collared and tagged in the event of an escape. There’s lots of ins and outs, deliveries,…

  • Health & Wellness,  Rescue & Adoption

    November is National Senior Pet Month

    November is National Senior Pet Month. This is the first I’ve heard of it, which makes sense because it’s a very new thing, but it’s a great idea. Just like our human elders, our longtime fur buddies deserve celebration and comfort in their old age.  Pets can develop a lot of chronic issues like dementia, cancer, diabetes, arthritis, and so many other conditions that require specialized care and broader awareness. Very often good diet and supplementation can alleviate or delay the onset of many of these issues. Basic things like using the proper amounts of fish oil can combat joint and cardiac issues, and goat’s milk is great for kidney…

  • Behavior

    The Right and Wrong Ways to Bring Home a New Dog

    You only get one chance to do it right – and if you make this mistake, you can set the stage for a rocky relationship between your current dog and your new one. Dogs are social animals and their social units have hierarchy, so to minimize disruption and unrest, be sure to follow these steps. Adding a dog to your family is an exciting time, but one that must be given careful consideration. As the old saying goes, you only get one chance to make a first impression, and you want to be sure that the introduction goes well. While you may be tempted to throw open your front door…

  • Ideas

    Global Cat Day 2023

    Recognizing the role felines play in our lives today and historically The Global Cat Day 2023 theme, Cats Are CommunityTM, is a rallying call of this global truth: Cats have lived alongside people for thousands of years, have a place in our communities, and are beings of inherent value who deserve to be protected. Cats are our family, our friends, and our neighbors who live indoors with us and outdoors among us. Our unique relationships with them span thousands of years and cross every border. Love for cats is a universal language in itself. But even with so much history together, cats still face cruel threats to their lives every…

  • Health & Wellness,  Musings

    Chonk v. Obesity

    I have five roommates. The married couple from whom I rent, and I’ve been close with for decades, and their three rescue cats: Shuri is our new bleppy baby, and the sister act of Moxie and Josie. Josie is a pistol. She is also a tripod. She needed her front right leg amputated as a kitten due to an injury while living on the streets of Baltimore, MD. She gives me lots of belly and is very vocal when she feels she is owed treats, which is often. Moxie is the epitome of a scaredy cat, and that’s probably why she still has all her limbs. She has these dainty…

  • Health & Wellness

    Much Ado About Raw Food

    This isn’t an attempt to boost sales of a particular product. This is an appreciation post.  Per the AAFCO website “ Uncommon, but well-publicized, events have occurred when a pet food was to blame for a pet’s illness or death, or when a pet owner may have become ill handling contaminated pet food or treats…. The best defense consumers have is understanding what they are feeding animals in the first place, how to handle pet food products safely and how to use them correctly in feeding companion animals.” I’ve been a pet person my whole life so I took it for granted that I was up to date on pet…