Enjoy the Outdoors With Your Pet

There are dozens of tents available in different sizes, colors and style suitable for any pet there is. If you love to travel and you want your dog or cat to be a part of your journey, then you could invest in a good quality portable dog/cat tent. The following are two major categories of pet tents mainly for dogs and cats and other premium quality tents available in the market today.

Original Pet Tent – Consist of two external fiberglass poles arc over the top and crisscross from corner to corner for support. A multi-purpose pet tent which can be used on hotels, camper vans, and airports.

Pet tents – Large for Parrots, Ferrets, Cats, Little Dogs: can accommodate birds, ferrets, guinea pigs and a number of other household pets. Collapses for storage and pops open for continued use.

When trying to buy portable tents online, try to be specific and be very detailed with the tent you want to buy. Dog and cat tents come in different sizes, shapes, colors and style. Owners should choose the tent that perfectly suits their pets unique taste for a new snug since this will become his temporary hiding place during camping and other outdoor trips. Generally, these tents are easy to set up because of its pop open feature and its also takes less time to fold since its collapsible.There are also much more features such as waterproof tents, durability, etc. which you can choose from the store in order to get the most appropriate features and options you are seeking. If you want to get top of the line dog and cat tents, then you should go for branded ones however, those kind of tents do not come cheap yet provide the most desirable comfort and safety for your pet.

Having a Pet During Childhood

  • An Activity Partner. Having a pet, a dog for example, helps a child become active. A dog encourages a child to walk, run, play and frolic in the sun or even dance in the rain keeping the child away from becoming inactive. Such activities help develop a child’s physical and motor skills.
  • Encourages Good Social Behavior. A child is often encouraged to befriend another child with a pet whether that is a dog, a cat, a bird or rabbit. Pets encourage a typically shy child to become socially active and thus gain confidence and win many playmates and friends. Confidence could help a child become ready to eventually face a tougher adult world.
  • Helps in Emotional Development. Having a pet enforces the responsibility taught by parents to a child through the love and care that has to be shown to the pet. The involved tasks of course may depend on what the child can or cannot do at a certain age but the positive emotional development that could be gained from the experience will last throughout the child’s existence.
  • Promotes Desire for Knowledge. The interaction between child and pet promotes an inquisitive mind in a child leading him to ask questions. Like for instance when a child wants to know how to teach a dog some tricks, what food will do the pet good other than satisfying a hunger, etc. Parents naturally have a big part in supporting a curious child. The desire to learn could start due to the influence of pet ownership but when a child learns that parents are willing to support a need to discover things, the child could be encouraged to learn more beyond pets. This promotes cognitive skills.

Pets can be so much a part of a childhood, creating a special bond that is beneficial to the development of a youngster. A child who is in need of healing whether physical, mental or emotional will be nurtured by the experience of having a pet. However, the decision to have a pet should be backed by the right reasons because it does entail responsibilities which should not be taken care of by the child alone. The commitment has to be established among the family as a whole. But once the decision has been made and the commitment is there, the positive results of having a pet is beyond definition that is simply priceless. And you may even see that in many years through your child.

About Catching Birds

Every day, we can feast our eyes on blue herons, roseate spoonbills, white egrets, wood storks, ibises, ospreys, hawks, cormorants, pelicans and (sometimes) eagles resting on our lawns or fishing in our man-made lakes that are stocked with fish. When I walk in the late afternoon, I often take binoculars along to get a better view of the birds that are just out of eye sight. I never tire of watching them.

Birds have been in our life and even in our house since our middle daughter was in grade school and we were living in California. She fell in love with the smaller tropical birds that you see in pet shops. The first bird was a cockatiel that was hand raised and very tame. He loved to sit on heads and shoulders and once he chose to do this to a TV repairman just as he bent over the back of our TV set. I heard his scream from the other end of the house. I don’t know who was more frightened, the bird or the repairman.

Our daughter had two parakeets in a cage in her room. One, Marco, was very tame and could be let out for short periods. One day she called and asked me to bring the two birds to school for show and tell. Obediently I picked up the cage with the two birds and headed for the car. But when I placed them on the driveway to retrieve the car keys from my pocket, the cage door swung open and Marco flew the coop. Horrified, I watched him until he settled in a large tree by the corner of the house. I waited a few minutes, then decided I’d better take the remaining bird to school where our daughter was waiting,

At school, I handed her the cage, mumbling something about Marco’s absence. But after the show and tell was over, I knew I had to tell her the truth. She burst into tears and asked to go home to look for him.

When we returned to the house, I was surprised to find that Marco had remained in the tree but on a much higher branch. I pointed him out to our daughter and when I saw her sad face, I knew what I had to do. I retrieved the extra birdcage from the house and loaded it with bird seed. Then, cage in hand, I started to climb the tree. I’m no athlete and climbing trees was never something I did well (even in my prime) but I was determined. With help from a step ladder, I reached a V in the tree and when I looked up, I saw Marco watching my every move. Carefully I maneuvered to the next protruding branch and, when I looked down, I knew this was my limit.

I balanced the cage on a branch above me, door open and hoped the seed looked good to a hungry bird. Marco cocked his head, looked at the bird seed and looked at me. He hopped down to a closer branch. Fifteen minutes later, he came a bit closer. My legs were cramped, my back hurt and the ground was much too far away but my daughter’s tearful face at the bottom of the tree kept me going. Marco moved again, his eyes on the cage. Then – bang- he was in and I secured the cage door. My grateful daughter took the cage from me and I carefully made my way down the tree, very happy to feel the ground beneath my feet.

Unfortunately, this wasn’t the last bird escapade. About a year later, my daughter decided to raise finches to sell to pet stores. We constructed an aviary in the back yard and soon it was occupied by dozens of finches. But our building skills left something to be desired and a few weeks later, we discovered at least half the finches had escaped through an opening in the screen that had come loose over the door. The escapees were flying overhead and perching on top of the aviary. I remembered the method I had used to trap Marco and thought maybe it would work again.

I grabbed the old birdcage, filled it with seed and then surveyed the yard. There was no tree to climb but there was a small one to hide behind. I tied a fishing line to the cage door and left the cage in front of the tree. Then I released enough line to get me behind the tree. I kneeled down and pulled the line taught so the cage door was wide open.

It didn’t take long before the first finch hopped over to the door, enticed (I hoped) by the bird seed within. As soon as he hopped in, I let the fishing line go and the door swung shut. After I returned the finch to the aviary I repeated the exercise again and again, until we had most of the birds back in the aviary which, by now, had been patched up.

However, the birds were only part of the menagerie. We also had two dogs, a cat, a rabbit, two chickens and one duck. A friend of ours would bring his son to our house to visit because the child thought our yard was the zoo! And he might have been right.

When we moved from California to Syracuse, New York, the aviary had to go but the pet birds – one parakeet, one cockatiel and an African grey parrot – came with us, in addition to two dogs. We traveled by air to our new home and created quite a stir at baggage claim when the three crates holding the larger creatures rolled down the belt. I hand-carried the parakeet and cockatiel in a small cage. They, too, startled other passengers with their small vocabularies: hello, how are you, good-bye and cockadoodle-doo.

A year later, when my daughter left for college, we found a wonderful new home for the cockatiel and parakeet with a woman who had an equally tame female cockatiel. The last I heard both cockatiels spent most days riding on her shoulders and the parakeet followed close behind. The African grey parrot got sick and, when I learned that the veterinarian treating him had a room at home just for her parrots, I offered her ours in return for the bill. It was a win-win but most of all, I knew the parrot had a good home.

Cleaning A Bird Aviary

Cleaning of feeders and bird baths

Cleaning up of bird feeders, water dishes, and bird baths should be done on a daily basis. This is not just to provide fresh water and bird seeds, but also to keep away germs from developing over time. If you’ve set up a weekly schedule, it is best to still include these items during clean-up time.

Set up a routine for you to follow and for the birds to get used to

Having a cleaning routine helps the birds from experiencing too much stress. It is also important that you’re the one who always do the clean up to also prevent stress and anxiety among the birds. As your pet birds become familiar and used to your presence, it will be easier to get in and out of their abode anytime.

Use a corner of the aviary to isolate the birds

When things are still stressful for your pets, it is best to use a separator to isolate them from the area that’s being cleaned. Dedicate a corner for the birds whenever you need to clean up their living space and make sure it is cleaned first before they are enclosed in this portion. This usually helps in reducing restlessness and anxiety among birds, and it truly is beneficial especially when there are hatchlings.

Use mild disinfectant when cleaning

You can dilute a strong disinfectant in buckets of water. If you like it chemical-free, you can use vinegar or baking soda instead. Wipe clean the bird boxes, perches, walls, and other dirty parts of the enclosure. On a daily basis, you can also do this especially on the most soiled or dirtiest portions of the aviary; otherwise, you can schedule on a weekly or bi-weekly schedule.

A Zebra Finch

These finches don’t have any particularly unusual or awkward care requirements, and as such they are not difficult birds to look after. A cage is of course necessary, but it doesn’t need to be as big as it would be for many other birds. A larger cage will always be preferred though, and for any more than a single pair of finches you’ll need a much larger enclosure. Still, this is the case for any pet bird species.

One frequent concern amongst potential buyers is how noisy the finches will be – constantly squawking birds may well make you unpopular with your neighbors! However Zebra Finches are fairly quiet birds, and while they are not silent, they can easily be kept in a flat or apartment without annoying anyone living nearby.

Their diet can be catered for with a wide range of commercially available products that any pet store will supply, and the cage can even be lined with newspaper if you don’t want to buy anything more expensive. Further research is obviously recommended to see exactly what your pets will need before you get them, and there are many comprehensive care sheets both online and in books.

Zebra Finches will live comfortably at room temperature and so they can be very easily integrated into the average home, although they should always be kept away from cold draughts and air conditioning units. They may need some exposure to UV light, and some people choose to buy special lights to achieve this, but it shouldn’t be an issue in most houses.

Choosing to buy a couple of these birds is a reasonably long term commitment as they should live for at least six years, but this isn’t exceptionally long and is shorter than many species, making them a good choice for a first bird. If you’ve never owned a bird before, then Zebra Finches are certainly a better choice than something like a parrot that may outlive you!

Yellow Belly Turtle

In the wild they are frequently found where great densities of algae occur. They occupy ponds, swamps and marshes. Most active in the morning, they can often be seen basking in the sun.

The shell of the adult yellow belly turtle averages between 8 and 10 inches (20.3 and 25.4cm) long. Females are slightly bigger and can sometimes reach 11 inches (27.9cm). Usually a mixture of brown and black at the top, the plastron underneath is distinctively yellow with some green spots. Its skin is predominantly olive-green, but features odd patches of yellow on the legs and neck.

The yellow belly turtle can be kept indoors, but bear in mind that it will need a tank capacity of at least 60 gallons when adult. If you are planning to own more than one, add 20 gallons per turtle to the equation. Young hatchlings can be kept in a tank of 15 gallons.

A basking area with a temperature of at least 80 Fahrenheit (26.6 degrees Celsius) should be provided. Since they sleep at night, the basking light could be turned off when it is dark.

Males eat more meat than females and, as with several other species of turtles, hatchlings also eat more meat, in the form of insects, tadpoles, spiders and worms, than adult turtles do. This species eats carrion when it is available.

In nature, young turtles may spend an entire winter still confined to their nests after they hatched. The vivid colorings of the hatchlings fade as they mature. They eat pond plants such as elodea and cabomba, but can also be fed Romaine lettuce, escarole and collard greens. They eat in the water. While aquatic plants can be left, uneaten non-aquatic plant matter should be removed after a while.

One reason why they make great pets is their friendly demeanour. Even a shier turtle, is quickly won over once it trusts you.

Another word of caution applies to their handling. The shell is actually part of the skin, making it easy to hurt them without meaning to. To be on the safe side, do not let your hand stray too near to the turtle’s beak.

Habitats for Happy Reptiles

A typical housing for a pet such as this is an aquarium tank or terrarium. Depending on the size of the animal, the size of the tank will usually range from 10 to 30 gallons, even more for larger creatures. Snakes will need a tank that is horizontally oriented, and lizards need one that is taller so they can climb. The housing should be made out of glass to keep the animal from scaling the sides, and in some situations, it may need to have something blocking the back and side views for the safety of the pet.

The lid is normally made of mesh to allow for airflow, and it must be secure enough to retain a tricky critter. Some reptile’s needs require that the whole screen be exposed for maximum airflow, though there are times, such as when the snake or lizard will need extra humidity to assist with shedding, when it may be necessary to block half or more of the screen to stop airflow and retain moisture in the housing.

Each reptile has its own heating and lighting needs, so there is no one size fits all for this. A pet store can advise you about this, but most snakes and lizards need a lot of heat, and one area of the housing should be especially warm for basking. Heat lamps and heating pads that go under the tank or under the substrate can provide the right temperature.

The substrate for geckos, lizards and snakes can be something as simple as chemical-free paper, but many owners prefer to use reptile carpet or sanitized mulch. The former is good for animals that may ingest small particles of substrate that could impact their digestive system. The latter is best for snakes and animals that like to burrow.

Furnishing for a reptile habitat is simple. The pet needs a few things to hide around and climb on such as branches and shrubs. It also needs something to go into to hide. This is usually a small, enclosed box or something similar. It should have some moss or paper towels in it to hold some moisture to provide humidity.

Quality Turtle Breeders

Additionally, it is important for turtle breeders to maintain a healthy environment for their turtles. This environment should cater specifically to the type of turtle. Water turtles prefer to live in large, deep aquariums with clean water and copious room for swimming. Since they defecate in the water frequently, it should be changed out on a daily basis and have heavy filtration to prevent the water quality from becoming bad. Land turtles prefer habitats with dry substrate and larger amounts of horizontal space to utilize, which will give them room to move freely. They also appreciate a shelter space where they can hide, sleep or get away from stressors they can perceive outside of the cage.

Most breeders who have a good handle on their work will also be familiar with the behavior patterns of healthy turtles, as well as the patterns that sickly turtles may display. These patterns are important to recognize, since they are very good indicators of whether a turtle is thriving and can indicate whether something different needs to be done in their care. A good breeder should be able to show any new owner what a thriving turtle looks like, and will be able to explain articulately what warning signs can indicate that a turtle is sick or failing to thrive. For instance, healthy turtles will be active and exhibit a healthy diet and curiosity about their surroundings, while turtles that are not thriving may be inactive or reluctant to move.

In addition to being a good source for a first turtle and beginning information for care, an ideal breeder will also provide an ongoing source of information for owners who become more serious about their turtles later. These breeders may also have connections into local turtle breeding chapters or organizations, providing even more connections and opportunities for informational exchange. They may provide timely information about nutritional or scientific developments regarding the care of turtles. While choosing to obtain a turtle from a breeder obviously has the benefit of obtaining a guaranteed healthy young turtle, connections to respectable turtle breeders are also a valuable connection in the years following the purchase.

The Budgie

Mum used to bring Sky with her when she visited, so I was aware of how to look after him, but other than that I really didn’t have a clue about budgies. I remember one we had as a family pet when I was a teenager and that was about it.

Sky and I got into a routine for the first 5 months – I opened his cage door every morning but he never left it. He was happy to flap his wings inside his cage which is large enough to do so with room to spare.

Then came the day about a month ago when he ventured out and the problems started. On the few times that he started to fly around he flew into the walls and had a nasty fall when he misjudged a shelf – this had never happened to him before and he went into shock.

This noisy, feisty little bird became quiet – he couldn’t hold onto his perch properly and ended up walking around on the bottom of his cage – it was truly heart breaking to watch. He would jump at the slightest movement or unexpected sound and fly around in a panic. I knew that there was something seriously wrong when he allowed me to hold him in my hand on 3 separate occasions when I had to rescue him from falling off his perch.

I am fortunate to be friends with some animal healers and communicators and one of them instructed me on giving him Rescue Remedy and that helped. She didn’t see a serious illness with him, just a bit sore from his collisions, and she did some distant healing on him and he perked up quite a bit, but was still far from back to his normal self. He was much calmer though and didn’t go into panics, so I decided to get him checked out by the vet as well.

Sky was far from happy at being caught and put into a very pretty tissue box and carted along to the vet, a very pleasant man who specialises in small animals. He examined him and found him to be underweight, but with no external damage, good eye sight and no problem with his claws. However, he did suspect that he might have liver and/or kidney problems and told me that budgies often only lived between 5 to 7 years and that 15 years (which is what I had read) was the exception rather than the rule. He gave me some medicine and made an appointment for the following week, but I could tell by his demeanour that he didn’t expect Sky to survive.

I was absolutely heartbroken – this little bird had crept into my heart and was also a connection to Mum and I couldn’t bear the thought of losing him so soon.

Synchronicity is a big part of my life and I was given further information which would be of great help and another piece in the puzzle. I was again told that there was nothing physically wrong with him, but that he was grieving, deeply depressed and didn’t see the point of living. It was suggested that I put a photo of my Mum in his cage with him and to add a bit of curcumin to his food/drink to help build him up.

I immediately printed out a photo of Mum and put it in his cage and I couldn’t believe the change in him – if someone had told me, I would have had a hard time believing it. He immediately started to eat and drink as if he was making up for lost time. His food was near Mum’s photo and he would stay close to it while he was eating. One night I peeped in on him and he was fast asleep right next to her. He also found the strength to get back onto his perch again and started moving round his cage – it was truly miraculous. I also put a piece of Rose Quartz into his cage and he spent quite a bit of time close to that too.

He was obviously still stressed though, so I cancelled a further visit to the vet and decided to let nature take its course. With the help of my friends I had done everything I could and it was now up to Sky to decide whether he wanted to stay or not.

It has been an emotional month watching this little bird going through his trauma, and it has been an ongoing healing. Just last week he went through 3 days of literally sitting on his perch virtually motionless, just eating a little now and then, but showing no interest in anything. I felt helpless and wondered if he was craving companionship – though he had always been a solitary bird.

However, just 3 days ago he started to make some noise and showed some interest in his surroundings. The following day he started to play again and was climbing everywhere and today he hasn’t stopped chatting. It does my heart good to hear him.

Once I came out of my emotional state it occurred to me that the reason he was flying into the walls might be because I have no pictures on those particular walls, so he can’t judge where they are – I will rectify that before he is ready to venture out of the security and safety of his cage. Fingers crossed!!

Types Of Water Turtles

The most popular type of water turtle to be kept as a pet is the Red Eared Slider Turtle. They are commonly found out in the wild throughout the United States and are very calm, which is what makes them such great pets. They are a hardy species, and have modest maintenance requirements. They get their name from the bright red stripes along the sides of their heads, and can come in albino.

Note that there is another type called Red Footed Turtle, which is not to be confused with the Red Eared Slider.

Another very popular pet water turtle is the Painted Turtle. They are also found throughout North America in fresh waters. They are considered to be one of the most visually appealing turtles, as they have red and yellow stripes all over their bodies. There are four different sub-species of the Painted Turtle, the Midland Painted Turtle, the Western Painted Turtle, the Eastern Painted Turtle, and the Southern Painted Turtle.

Another type of water turtle that is kept as a pet is the African Side-Necked Turtle. They are also known as African Mud Turtles, and there are a total of 15 different sub-species within the species. They are considered to be cute, as they have a pug nose and appear to always have a smile on their face because of the way their mouth upturns. They are tough, curious, and very adaptive.

Every species of water turtle is different and has its own individual spacing and feeding requirements, so it is very important to do research before you decide to bring a water turtle into your home. It’s important to be prepared when bringing a new pet into your home. Similar to tortoises they can be carriers of salmonella, so it is also important to wash your hands thoroughly after handling. Water turtles do make excellent pets, and an informed decision will help you bring the right kind into your home.