WHAT KIND OF CAT? If you are looking for a cat with a specific look or personality, consider one with a family tree | Lifestyles


Kittens come in all sizes, personalities, colors, patterns, and coat lengths. Thousands are available at animal shelters nationwide, and they are as cute as they get. But if you are looking for a particular type of cat, you may go to the shelter daily or check with rescue groups online and not find what you are looking for.

This is when you can turn to a responsible breeder who breeds the type of cat that meets your needs: for example, a cat that is bred to be outgoing or active; which has a particular type, length or pattern of coat; or whose personality and activity level are suited to your lifestyle or home environment. Cats may not vary as much in size and appearance as dogs, but individual cat breeds have some distinct characteristics that make them the perfect choice for some people. Purebred cats have been selected for specific personality or behavior traits over many generations.

People choose a purebred kitten when they want to know what the personality and size of a cat will be when it grows up. They may take into account how they want to spend time with a cat (going for a walk or snuggling on the couch) or whether the breed is known to be playful, trainable, or dog friendly.

Shorthair or randomly bred domestic longhair can also come in a variety of temperaments and activity levels, but these are the surprise wrappers of the cat world; it is not easy to predict their personality or behavior if nothing is known about their parents, grandparents or more distant ancestors.

Health is another factor. A kitten with a family tree comes with a known family medical history. This does not mean that they will not develop certain diseases, but if they are purchased from a reputable breeder, they will come with a written health guarantee against inherited diseases. The sales contract should provide for a replacement kitten without forcing you to give up the original cat you love. It should also state that the breeder will take the cat back at any time if you have to abandon it.

If you have your heart set on a cat with an unusual pattern or color, a purebred kitten may be the way to go. It’s not impossible to find a spotted tabby kitten in a shelter, but it’s not common either. This look is most commonly seen among Bengals, Maine coons, savannas, and Egyptian maus.

Are purebred kittens perfect? Not necessarily. And the Imperfect can be exactly who you want to bring home – that is, if you don’t intend to show it to him. Some kittens have cosmetic flaws that make them unsuitable for the ring but perfect for family life. They have the same predictable traits as their show siblings, but lack the perfect markings a cat needs to be successful in the show circuit. They also benefit from good nutrition, health care and early socialization provided by a responsible breeder.

Find out beforehand about the breeds that interest you. The websites of the Cat Fanciers Association (cfa.org/breeds) and the International Cat Association (tica.org/breeds/browse-all-breeds) are good resources.

When visiting a breeder, the cattery should be clean and uncrowded, says Marybeth Rymer, DVM, who has two Abyssinians. Cats should be calm and easy to handle.

Ask breeders about health history, genetic issues, and what cats like to live with. Dr Rymer says health issues should include whether the cattery has had cats with feline infectious peritonitis in the past five years; had problems with diarrhea and Tritrichomonas organism; the measures taken by the farmer to prevent these diseases; and whether the breeder performs genetic testing appropriate for that breed and testing for feline leukemia virus and feline immunodeficiency virus.

Breeders need to be open with their answers. Move on if they are unwilling to share health information.

“Don’t feel like you have to buy that day,” says Dr. Rymer. “Consider revisiting the cattery to confirm your first impressions. “

How to prepare a pet feast

Question: What’s a fun, yet healthy way to include my pet in the upcoming holiday season?

A: That’s a great question! Our pets just know by their noses that we are eating delicious food, and of course they want to join us, but not everything we eat is good for them. Common foods in our holiday treats that can be toxic to dogs include onions, raisins, grapes, certain nuts, chocolate, rich or fatty foods, and anything that contains alcohol.

To let them participate, we love this idea from Best Friends Animal Society: making a “barkcuterie” or “catcuterie” tray with healthy, animal-friendly treats. Here’s how.

You will need the following:

• a serving or cutting board that your pet can eat;

• cookie cutters in your favorite shapes and sizes – paws, bones, hearts and stars would be fun;

• cutting board, knife and spoon for food preparation;

• 1/2 cup of your pet’s favorite wet food (if he does not eat canned food, double the amount of dry food);

• 1/4 cup of your pet’s favorite dry food;

• a good handful of your pet’s favorite treats;

• a small, colorful assortment of your pet’s favorite fruits and vegetables, suitable for dogs or cats, chopped or sliced: apples, mangoes, strawberries, blueberries, watermelon or cantaloupe (cats love it), broccoli, carrots and peppers, for example .

• coconut whipped cream (optional);

• peanut butter (optional) – make sure it doesn’t contain xylitol.

Design the bark cutting deck with your pet in mind and choose their favorite foods and treats. Use the cookie cutters to make pretty shapes out of the canned foods and place them on the cutting board. Surround with cut fruits and vegetables. Separate the colors to make each item stand out. Decorate with small amounts of coconut whipped cream or peanut butter, if desired. Fill in the empty spaces with dry foods and treats. Your pet will have fun eating. – Mikkel Becker

Do you have a question about pets? Send it to [email protected] or visit Facebook.com/DrMartyBecker.

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animals find homes

• If you’re in the San Francisco Bay Area, make the most of the vacation season by visiting Macy’s Union Square through January 3. animal videos in the window and on the ground floor from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day. Snap a photo at one of the store’s instagrammable shelter animal outposts, and be on the lookout for the San Francisco SPCA’s Animal-Assisted Therapy Animals in the store, not to mention other adorable surprises. pet vacation. During the 35 years of the Holiday Windows program, the SF / SPCA has placed nearly 10,000 dogs and cats in new homes.

• Cats use their keen hearing and the ability to create a mind map of their surroundings to keep tabs on the location of their people, according to a team of researchers in Japan. In their article, published in PLOS One earlier this month, they report that cats appear to be able to follow owners’ movements even when they can’t see them. In a series of experiments with 50 pet cats, divided into three groups, they placed the cats in enclosures equipped with loudspeakers. They then made sounds: the voices of the owners calling them by name; voices of strangers calling their names; and random noise. Then they played the sounds in pairs. The first went to the speaker inside the enclosure; the second through the speaker outside the enclosure. The cats looked very surprised when the owners suddenly appeared to be in a new location, suggesting that they were keeping track of where the human was supposed to be.

• Four Facts About Hamsters: Hamsters use their whiskers to explore their surroundings. Hamster teeth are continually growing. Hamsters are nocturnal, with eyes that work well in low light conditions. Hamsters typically live for up to two years. – Dr Marty Becker, Kim Campbell Thornton and Mikkel Becker

ABOUT PET CONNECTION

Pet Connection is produced by a team of pet care experts led by “Dr. Oz Show” veterinarian, Dr. Marty Becker, founder of the Fear Free organization and author of numerous bestselling books on pet care. to pets, and award-winning journalist Kim Campbell. Thornton. Join them, Mikkel Becker, behavior consultant and head animal trainer for Fear Free Pets. Dr. Becker can be found on Facebook.com/DrMartyBecker or on Twitter at DrMartyBecker. Kim Campbell Thornton is on Facebook.com/KimCampbellThornton and on Twitter at kkcthornton. Mikkel Becker is on Facebook.com/MikkelBecker and on Twitter at MikkelBecker.


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