Sunday, February 19, 2017

Brush Up February -- National Pet Dental Month & Black History Month!

It seems these days every month connotes something to remember. February, for example is not only Black History month it is also Library Lovers Month, Grapefruit Month, Love the Bus Month among many others.  For the purpose of this blog, February is also Prevent a Litter Month, Responsible Pet Owner's Month and National Pet Dental Month.  So this month I decided to review Purina's Pro-Plan Dental Crunches Cat Snacks. The purpose of these crunchy wonders is to help reduce cat tartar build up or gingivitis on your cat's teeth. 



I have lived with cats almost all of my life but it wasn't until 20 years ago that I started to hear how important regular dental care is for cats, especially Himalayans, Siamese and Tonkinese, breeds that are predisposed to dental problems. A national study has found that not only humans are living longer, so are cats (dogs too) ! Today, the average age of a cat is 12.9 years or roughly 70 human years, this number is up from 12.1 in 2013 and, up from just 11 years in 2012.  One reason cats are living longer is because pet owners are more educated about their pets needs and because pets have more regular checkups with their vets and they are getting better nutrition; just look at all the natural pet food that is available. 


Purina's Pro-Plan Dental Crunches Cat Snacks are formulated with all natural chicken and liver flavors with no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. Their crunchy texture helps to clean teeth by reducing tartar build up with the added benefit of freshening your cat's breath.



This month www.chewy.com is offering Purina's Pro-Plan Dental Crunches Cat Snacks at 20% off and at just over $3.00 a bag, they were worth the try for this "responsible pet owner"! Unfortunately, my Himalayans didn't take to these at all; it is a pity because this breed is notorious for dental problems; maybe they found them difficult to eat because of their size; their mouths are considerably smaller than those of the Tonks.   My Tonkinese on the other hand seemed to enjoy crunching on them...although there are other treats that they like better...of course!




The "experts" have three basic suggestions for best practices in feline dental care. The first is brushing your cat's teeth with special cat toothpaste.  Do I even have to say it... good luck with that! Another suggestion is to feed your cat dental snacks and incorporate dry food in your cat's diet. Dry food and dental snacks help to keep gums healthy and to remove tartar build up. The third way of course is to schedule annual or bi-annual cleanings with your vet. So, don't forget to check out www.chewy.com for these dental treats and many other items. If you order more than $49, shipping is  free!




Celebrate Black History Month - Marion AndersonStudio, Danbury CT

She was one of the greatest contraltos of the twentieth century, the woman who broke the color barrier at the Metropolitan Opera. She is remembered by many as a courageous role model for her outdoor concert on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial after she was denied a performance at Constitution Hall because of her color, an event that drew 75,000 people. Now Marian Anderson's inspiring story is told to future generations at her Studio in Danbury Connecticut managed by the DanburyMuseum and Historical Society.



The exhibits show the extraordinary accomplishments of a girl born in 1897, who was denied even an audition at a music school because of her color, and who persevered to become a role model for her race and her nation. The Connecticut General Assembly made the farm one of the prime sites on its Freedom Trail commemorating the struggle of African Americans. With a curved ceiling, mini-kitchen, bath and fireplace, the handsome studio was a rehearsal place as well as a private retreat for the singer. It was designed by her architect husband, Orpheus Fisher, when the couple purchased a 48-acre farm in 1943 as a country house in Danbury. Known as Marianna Farm, it became Anderson's full time home from the time she retired from the stage in 1965, remaining even after her husband's death in 1986 until shortly before her death in 1993. 


Marian Anderson was active in the Danbury community and is warmly remembered by residents for her support of local music programs. After Anderson's death, when developers proposed to subdivide the property and build a road going directly through the studio's location, the community was alarmed. In 1996 the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation designated the structure as one of the state's most important threatened historic places. The developers agreed to donate the building to the Danbury Museum and Historical Society, and in 1999 it was removed to the Museum campus on Danbury's Main Street. Today, visitors are invited to tour this iconic studio and other attractions such as the Dodd Hat Shop on the Museum's campus. 



Tuesday, January 24, 2017

In Love with Weruva !

What better way to celebrate the first nor'easter of the year than trying out the new Blue Water White fish cat treat by Weruva, a company that is named after their three rescue cats, Webster, Rudi and Vanessa. According to the company website, all the formulas for their food and freeze dried treats are produced in a human food facility using many ingredients and processes are used in products made for people.


Weruva must be doing something right because the cat treats, especially the Whitefish are hands down my Tonk's favorite treats. They love putting their paws in the container and pulling out their treats -- the more the merrier!  Although the Blue Water Whitefish Treat is a little pricey, www.chewy.com is offering it for 37% off  making it affordable and if your cat loves these single protein treats as much as mine do, it is well worth the money!


There is so much I love about this grain and gluten free cat treat including the neat little cube shape of this freeze dried treat that keeps its shape and texture.  Another thing I like is that the company takes time to identify the type of fish they use and that they only use sustainable fish that are purchased from regulated fishing vessels.  One small  concern about fish in a cat's diet  is the mercury levels it contains.  The good news is that although fish will have some level of mercury, Weruva only uses fish that meets the FDA's list of those lower in mercury.  Not to worry, Weruva also makes a paw lickin chicken dried treat that the Tonks love so alternating between the two is the way to go.

This special treat is made of freeze dried whitefish that is specified as a boneless fish filet that has a guaranteed analysis of 76.6% crude protein, 7.0 % crude fat, 0.1% crude fibre and 5.0% moisture. This treat is grain free and can be fed to your cat or dog in one of two ways; as is or crumbled up on wet food as an extra treat. My Tonks enjoy the whole cubed pieces of fish so much that I usually feed them two or three cubes of fish a day...unless they  manage to pull out more than that!

I also love the packaging which is a tall thin cardboard container with a plastic lid that seals in the freshness of these treats and keeps them from crumbling; some of the freeze dried treats have a tendency to crumble on their own, these don't.  Needless to say, when my Tonks hear the "pop" of the container opening, they come running and begging for these great tasting healthy treats.  Sabu actually gets so excited that he snorts while eating the blue water whitefish treats... in their mind, this is the perfect snack for them and they just can't seem to get enough!


News from Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo....



Kuma, our Brazilian Ocelot, is excited to congratulate her daughter Ayla on the birth of her baby boy November 17, 2016 at The Buffalo Zoo.
Did you know, our Kuma is one of only five Brazilian Ocelots in the past twenty years, to give birth after successful laparoscopic artificial insemination? Not only that, she did it TWICE!
Her two daughters, Milagre and Ayla, now reside at Dallas Zoo and The Buffalo Zoo respectively.
To learn more about Species Survival Plan® (SSP) Program and other conservation efforts check out "The Tangible Benefits of Artificial Insemination for Conservation of Brazilian Ocelots" in the link below.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Time for a Tiki Party!

Tiki, the very word conjures up romantic images of Polynesia and the South Pacific's thousand or so scattered islands including Hawaii, Easter Island, Tahiti, Fuji, Samoa, and New Zealand. According to the Maori, the indigenous people of New Zealand, the god like figure, the Tiki was the first human in existence and the creator of mankind. Eventually, the term,  Tiki began to be used by Polynesian people to mean the carved statues they created in the likeness of their gods. For my cats, Tiki means  Luau time especially with the Tiki Cat King Kamehameha Variety Pack available at www.chewy.com 

All of my furry felines (some furrier than others) said  "Aloha"  with enthusiasm to this fabulous pack of food by Tiki  Cat Food that includes six flavors  fresh seafood choices that have never been frozen including: Sardine Cutlets (with huge chunks of sardines), Ahi Tuna (Sabu's favorite), Tuna in Crab Surimi Consomme, Ahi Tuna with Crab, Mackerel and Sardines in Calamari Consomme, and Sardine Cutlets in Lobster Consomme (Mocha's Favorite).  I love the fact that not only do my fab five felines love this food but that it contains lots of moisture and is grain free. This pack of 12 contains 2.8 oz cans in each variety so you can mix it up -- ensuring that your cat will never get bored with their food!

The sardine chunks, caught primarily in the Western Pacific are impressive and perfect for my cat carnivores...this recipe is made using  sardines that are caught in the wild and sliced into cutlets and cooked in their own consomme broth, vegetable gums are added at the end to provide a lap it up jelly that protects the pieces from falling apart. In the final stage, sunflower oil, vitamins and minerals are added for extra nutritional value. 

The girls, Zivah, like a true jungle cat and Zoey are waiting in the wings... and ready to join the Tiki Party fun... so it's time to open another can of Tiki Cat food and let the felines indulge in some Ahi Tuna that is made with wild caught Ahi Tuna loin that is flaked and topped with shredded wild crab meat and simmered in a broth made with crab shells.   It is love at first bit... they just can't get enough of Tiki Cat Food! This is really easy to get from www.chewy.com that has  1-2 day free shipping for orders over $49! 





Friday, December 23, 2016

Lap it Up - Muse *New* Purina Cat Food

I have often wondered along with the "experts” what does a purr really mean and how do cats make this divine sound.  Actually, experts can't agree on exactly how cats manage a purr. What is known is that a purr is a way felines communicate, for example, when a kitten purrs, it tells mom, "Everything is ok".  It is also a way our cats communicate with us... oh yes, that is the right spot or --- oh yes, more of that treat or cat food!  And, as for a yawn, I have to think it means, ok, I trust you enough to unwind!



Speaking of cat food, a new product, Muse by Purina caught my eye on www.chewy.com  -- it grain free, affordable and created by an iconic pet food brand. This month, Muse is 29% off, a great deal and a special treat for my cats for the holidays.   



My gang of five prefer pate and I was happy to see that this pate is made from high quality ingredients - real chicken, ocean whitefish and liver combined with antioxidant-rich spinach, sweet potatoes and even blueberries!  There are no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives making it super healthy.  


Muse also adds essential vitamins and minerals making this new all natural cat food really good for your cat. Taurine is added and that helps supports eyesight and digestion; another added benefit is that because there are no grains added to this food like corn, wheat or soy it is easy for your cat to digest.

Muse comes in five flavors, but my cats seem to like the Natural Chicken and Carrot recipe the best.  I liked the consistency of this food that is sprinkled with little bits of carrots in it... my cats, who can be a bit discerning about their pate really "lapped" this food up and cleaned their plates... not once or twice... but every time I fed it to them.  



Nutritional Details 
Chicken, chicken broth, ocean whitefish, liver, spinach, sweet potatoes, blueberry pomace Potassium chloride, guar gum, choline chloride, taurine, salt, mono and dicalcium phosphate, thiamine mononitrate, Vitamin E supplement, zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, niacin, calcium pantothenate, Vitamin A supplement, copper sulfate, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), manganese sulfate, pyridoxine hyrochloride, riboflavin supplement, Vitamin B-12 supplement, biotin, folic acid, Vitamin D-3 supplement, potassium iodide. A-3800


Muse by Purina Natural Chicken Recipe is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO Cat Food Nutrient Profiles for maintenance of adult cats.



Monday, December 5, 2016

Time for an Upgrade to Halo Mix n' Mores

We all know the word upgrade... I usually relate it to getting a new computer... and dreaming of upgrading to a new car... but my gang of five dream about cat food upgrades... so I decided to try Salmon and Turkey Mix 'n More by Halo offered by www.chewy.com  at a great discount of  30%! The company, Halo, Purely Pets has created healthy products for pets for thirty plus years using real meat with the resulting product being nutrient dense and really tasty according to the reaction to them from my furry family!  I think they want "more" !

Halo's Mixes n' Mores are delicious morsels that are made of and are grain; they are  gluten free and, best of all,  my cats like them -- as a treat and also sprinkled over their wet food... they see Mixes n' Mores  as a special and essential upgrade.
The way Mixes n' More is  made ensures that your cat will satisfy your furry friend's  inherent love of protein.  First-- step is that  turkey and salmon is pasteurized then it is crumbled into little chunks and flash frozen to lock in the nutritional value of these scrumptious kiblets, best of all no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives no dehyredration is used.  -- and all I have to say is that my gang is in love with these Salmon and Turkey  bits by Halo and we have www.chewy.com to thank for that!


Ingredients
  1. Salmon, turkey, whole flaxseed, salt, mixed tocopherols (a preservative), taurine, calcium sulfate, calcium carbonate, vitamin e supplement, zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, copper sulfate, niacin supplement, manganese sulfate, d-calcium pantothenate, vitamin a supplement, riboflavin supplement, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin d3 supplement, vitamin b12 supplement, sodium selenite, pyridoxine hydrochloride, folic acid



Sunday, November 20, 2016

The origins of Thanksgiving.... and Thanksgiving Day Dinner for Cats!

The first Thanksgiving was held in the fall of 1621 and historians believe it took place something between September 21 and November 9.  Edward Winslow, an English leader that attended the first Thanksgiving in 1621 noted that venison and waterfowl were the centerpieces of the meal as well as eels, lobsters clams and mussels.  The forest provided chestnuts, walnuts and beechnuts and they grew multicolored Indian corn, pumpkins, squash and beans.


Thanksgiving as we know it today was the brainchild of Sarah Josepha Hale, editor and publisher of a popular woman's magazine, Godey’s Lady’s Book, Hale petitioned 13 presidents to make Thanksgiving an annual holiday as a way to unite the country in the midst of the Civil War and in 1863, it was made a national holiday.  Hale published many recipes in her magazine as a suggestion of what women should prepare for “Thanksgiving” such as creamed onions, roast turkey with sage stuffing, mashed squash and turnips.   



Today’s modern Thanksgiving menu is iconic and always consistent from year to year.  From roasted butternut squash, candied yams and carrots, to, a golden brown roast turkey replete with cranberry sauce followed by a richly spiced pumpkin pie.  With this in mind, I went to the www.chewy.com website to look for a special treat for my gang of five to celebrate the Thanksgiving Day holiday!



It was hard to resist the new cat food by Merrick called “Thanksgiving Day Dinner” –  it is made both for dogs and cats.  This grain free Thanksgiving Day is a classic recipe that contains everything healthy and festive for your cat  -- white turkey, turkey broth, sweet potatoes, carrots, green beans and even cranberries!  Merrick sources their farm fresh ingredients locally to ensure freshness and are cooked in their five star kitchen and manufacturing facility that is in strict compliance with FDA guidelines.  I garnished it with  Freeze Dried Kiblets Chicken by Halo for an extra special treat.  These kiblets can be eaten as a topping or rehydrated as a food. They are 95% chicken, gluten and grain free providing natural nutrition for cats.



My cats went wild over this… the shredded chunks of turkey are lightly minced and in a thick wonderful gravy that my cats just couldn’t get enough of; I even added a bit of water to the mix so they could lap up more gravy and minced turkey goodness.  When looking at the mixture, that doesn’t smell like “cat food” you can see the bits of vegetables in it, I like to see what I am feeding my cats and they seem to love this Thanksgiving Day Dinner by Merrick. In addition, this cat food is loaded with lots of essential vitamins and minerals plus a protein content of 10%. 



Watching my cats enjoy this fabulous new food, Thanksgiving Day Dinner, I thought to myself, it just goes to you that “Thanksgiving” should be and can be every single day… even for my furry family. Getting this food from www.chewy.com is a click away and if you spend more than $40, shipping is free!