1331 South Street, Hollister, CA 95023
Phone (831) 636-4320
Open Monday thru Friday 10:00am - 5:00pm (subject to closure for emergency calls)
Closed Saturday, Sunday, and Holidays
A Plan For a Longer And Healthier Life
Thanks to advances in canine nutrition and veterinary medicine, dogs are living longer, healthier lives. A caring and careful pet owner can help, too. Because good health doesn't just happen. You have to have a plan for it. And the best way improve the length and quality of your companion's life is by having a plan to provide your pet with a proper diet, a good exercise program, and regular veterinary care.
Meeting Needs of The Adult Dog
Now that your dog has reached adulthood, it's important for you to be aware that his new activity level and lifestyle will mean different nutritional needs. Proper care of your dog from ages one to seven will also require changes in regular care and health regimens so that your dog looks and feels his best. This information will help you take good care of your adult dog. The information you need for a good care plan is right here: the nutritional needs of the adult dog; what a proper diet includes; the importance of regular visits to your veterinarian; diseases and parasites to be aware of; and, most importantly, the things you can do on a daily basis to help your pet live a long, happy and vigorous life.
Nutrition management is a major part of every good health plan. It means providing proper nutrition to your dog on a daily basis, throughout his entire lifetime. Nutrition management is essential because good nutrition affects his whole well-being. As long as your dog has been vaccinated, good nutrition strengthens the immune system to help your dog's body fight infection and speed recovery from illness. A proper diet may even retard the progression of some age-related disorders. In fact, aside from providing regular veterinary care and exercise, providing a diet that delivers advanced nutrition is one of the most important things you can do to help increase your dog's lifespan. The best diet for your dog is one that provides all the nutrients he needs to maintain good health and ensure long life. Manufacturers of high-quality commercial foods utilize nutritionists and conduct in-depth studies to give your dog the complete and balanced food he needs through life.
To provide the basics in canine nutrition, a dog food must be balanced across the more than 40 critical nutrients for the appropriate life stage. For a dog food to provide optimum nutrition, every nutrient must be present in the correct amount and in the appropriate proportion to the others. Too little of even one nutrient, or too much of certain nutrients, can lead to imbalances that could affect proper development. Basic nutrition must also have high nutrient utilization. In order for a dog's body to properly utilize ingested nutrients, the nutrients in the dog food must be complete, balanced, and highly digestible. It must also have great taste. No dog food, regardless of its nutritional adequacy, is of any value unless the dog eats it. Feeding your dog a pet food that meets these basic guidelines is one way to ensure he will be a healthy companion for many years.
How to Choose The Right Diet For Your Adult Dog
As an adult, your dog's bones and muscles are fully developed. Rather than the puppy diet that helped him grow, he needs a diet that will help him maintain his health and weight. When selecting the best diet for your adult dog, it is important to pay attention to the basics - proper balance of the more than 40 required nutrients, high nutrient utilization and great taste.
One of the complete and balanced dry or canned dog foods in the Heinz Pet Products family is probably the most convenient way to feed your dog the right diet. In order to meet your dog's nutritional requirements, his diet must contain appropriate levels of high-quality protein and the right amount and type of fat. It should offer properly balanced minerals and vitamins, without excess salt. High-quality protein is needed for proper muscle tone, tissue repair, and to meet energy requirements. The right amount of fat is important to ensure energy without contributing to obesity. The right type of fat means easier digestibility and correct fueling of the dog's metabolic process. And high-quality ingredients and fixed levels of nutrition are critical because they ensure consistent and proper nutrient delivery. Finally, once you decide on the diet that is best for your dog and most convenient for you to use, stick to it. Frequent changes will cause digestive upsets and possible nutritional imbalances.
In order for a diet to provide high nutrient utilization for the adult dog, it must be highly digestible. This means that most of the food eaten is efficiently used by the body with little excreted as waste. Eating a highly digestible formula helps contribute to small, firm stools. High-quality protein is important because it is both highly digestible and has an amino acid balance for optimum utilization.
Great taste is one of the most important things to consider when buying a dog food. After all, a dog has to eat the food in order to benefit from its nutritional value. Ideally, the dog food should have just enough fat to make it palatable and provide essential fatty acids without adding unnecessary calories.
Feeding Your Dog
Most adult dogs do well with one meal per day. All dogs, regardless of size, need the same nutrients. Only the amounts will vary. Avoid overfeeding. Use the chart above or the manufacturer's recommendations on your dog food package as a guide. But keep in mind that the amount of food your dog gets may have to be adjusted according to the individual dog, your own observations and the climate in which you live (dogs in warmer climates may require less food). If your dog is moderately active, a regular feeding schedule using recommended amounts should be sufficient. However, if he is more active, less active, or overweight, consult your veterinarian about the optimum feeding plan to ensure your dog's good health. Remember, too, that your dog is a creature of habit - from the type of food he eats to the time he eats it, To keep his appetite and bowel movements regular, it's important to feed him at the same time each day. If you change to a new food, do so gradually. Start out by adding a little of the new food to the old, steadily increasing the amount of new food until it completely replaces the old. Fussy eaters usually have been spoiled by getting tidbits from the table or by "holding out" for a favorite food, You should never feed your dog table food. If he is fussy, don't give in. Be firm and insist that your dog eat the proper food. Put the food in his dish. If he walks away from it, remove the dish. At the next regular feeding time, repeat the process. You aren't starving him. His fast is self-imposed, and he will eat the food you give him before he does any harm to himself. Once he does eat, keep to a regular pattern of feeding and don't give in-between meal handouts.
|Wt. Lbs.||5||10||20||50||90||over 90|
|Cups Dry||3/4||1-1/3||2-1/4||4-1/3||6-3/4||6-3/4 + 1 cup for every 8lbs over|
|Mixed Cans + Cups Dry||1/4 can & 1/2 cup||1/2 can & 3/4 cup||3/4 can & 1-1/2 cups||1-1/2 cans & 2-3/4 cups||2 cans & 4-3/4 cups||3 cans & 4-3/4 cups + 1 cup for every 19 lbs over|
Making Water Readily Available
In addition to a proper diet, it is very important to provide plenty of fresh water for your dog at all times. Water comprises approximately two-thirds of a dog's total body weight. Water is not stored in the body like some other nutrients, so it must constantly be replaced.
Regular Veterinary Care
It's always better to prevent a problem rather than treat one. So any basic health care plan for your dog should include regular visits to your veterinarian. Regular veterinary care will identify potential trouble areas and allow early treatment if it is needed. Your adult dog should have a thorough physical examination at least once a year. Your veterinarian will check for disease, parasites and skin disorders, as well as any potential eye, ear and dental problems. You should also keep a health record for your pet. If you move, or are traveling, knowing what ailments, treatments and inoculations your dog has had could be very important.
It's wise to immunize. To protect your pet against the more common canine diseases, your veterinarian will set up a vaccination schedule. Since some of these diseases can be life-threatening, strict adherence to an ongoing vaccination program should be kept. A typical program includes: Yearly DHLPP boosters to prevent distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parainfluenza, and canine parvovirus. A rabies booster every one to three years.
Looking Out For Parasites And Lyme Disease
Whether internal or external, parasites can cause great discomfort for your dog and can lead to severe illnesses. Weight loss, coughing, diarrhea or bloody stools may indicate the presence of internal parasites. The five most common internal parasites found in dogs are coccidia, roundworms, tapeworms, hookworms and whipworms. If you suspect internal parasites, take a stool sample to your veterinarian for accurate diagnosis and effective treatment. Another internal parasite, heartworms, can only be detected by blood analysis. If your dog scratches constantly, he may have fleas or ticks. Ticks appear as small, dark spots and may feel like bumps on his skin. You can remove ticks with tweezers and gloves, but ask your veterinarian how to remove them safely. Check for fleas near the base of his tail or on his belly. Treatments include flea collars, powders and sprays, flea soaps and shampoos. Treat your pet with one of the on-animal products such as Hartz® Control Pet Care System® Flea and Tick Conditioning Shampoo for Dogs.
Lyme disease is carried by certain species of ticks and causes fever, weakness, recurring arthritis and even heart problems in dogs. Once acquired, the disease may be treated successfully, though prevention is the best form of protection for your pet. A vaccine against Lyme disease is now available through your veterinarian.
Just like people, dogs can develop gum disease brought on by buildup of plaque and tartar on teeth. Some signs of gum disease include a decreased appetite, excessive drooling, and very bad breath. Because a diseased mouth can affect a dog's entire well-being, you should follow a preventive dental care program. Have your dog's teeth examined by your veterinarian once a year and follow his recommendations regarding dental care at home.
Many people enjoy taking their dog along when they jog or engage in other types of physical exercise. If your dog has not been active at this level in the past, ease him into any type of strenuous physical exercise gradually. This is no different than the way that people ease into an exercise routine when it is new. Active dogs expend a great deal more energy than the average pet. It is absolutely vital to provide food that meets their increased nutritional demands. The complete and properly balanced dog foods in the Heinz Pet Products family meet these needs effectively and place a minimum of stress on the digestive processes.
The Advantages of Spaying/Neutering
Many pet owners wonder whether or not to have their animals spayed or neutered. Studies show significant health and behavioral benefits can be gained. For females, spaying reduces the risk of uterine infection or cancer, cuts the risk of mammary tumors, and eliminates uncomfortable and inconvenient cyclical heats. For males, neutering stops the risk of testicular cancer as well as prostate problems. Neutering can also mean less aggression with a decreased desire to roam, but only if neutering occurs prior to these behaviors first being exhibited.
Ways You Can Help Accidents Will Happen
Treat indoor accidents with patience. Never punish your dog after the fact, and don't rub his nose in the stain. These actions will only confuse him. Instead, praise him when he uses the appropriate location. When stains do occur, immediately clean them with a stain remover such as Resolve®* Carpet Cleaner, which is ammonia-free. Dogs often mistake the scent of ammonia-based cleaners for urine and will resoil the area. After cleanup, use a product such as ARM & HAMMER® Pet Fresh®* Carpet & Room Deodorizer to eliminate and destroy residual odors.
Help your dog look and feel his best with regular grooming and periodic bathing. Gently brush your pet every few days to keep his coat tangle-free and his skin healthy. Regular grooming prevents dandruff by distributing skin oils, and it's an excellent time to check for fleas, ticks, skin infections, or ear mites. Other grooming tips include: occasional bathing with a mild soap such as a quality dog shampoo; thorough rinsing with lukewarm water and use of a cotton ball or soft cloth for the outer portion of the inside ear.
Basic And Advanced Training
Training your pet is important. It prevents accidents and injuries to both your dog and people. Training usually begins no later than age five to six months with basic commands, such as "come", "sit", "stay", "down", and "heel". More complex commands and obedience training are reserved for more mature dogs. Advanced training typically includes exercises such as following hand commands. Reinforce good conduct using dog treats such as Meaty Bone® or Pupperoni® as rewards for correct response. When you take on the job of training, remember: be positive (never hit, jerk on the leash or otherwise treat the dog roughly), be firm, stick to a regular schedule, remain consistent, stay patient, respond immediately and end all sessions with a great deal of praise and love.
Pets love taking trips with their owners and can become stressed without their owners around. If your travel plans allow, take your pet along, but follow these guidelines: Before a trip, have your pet examined and make sure vaccinations are current. You also might want to inquire about the need for pet tranquilizers. Don't forget dog license, health record, leash, collar, brush, comb, regular food, food and water bowls, and favorite playthings. Check with hotels and motels before you arrive to make sure pets are allowed.
Here is a listing of the Hollister area hotels and motels and their pet policies:
110 San Felipe Rd., Hollister, CA
Phone: (408) 637-5761
They accept pets upon manager approval. (Sometimes pets have to stay in a travel kennel).
152 San Felipe Rd., Hollister, CA
Phone: (408) 637-1641
Posada de San Juan
311 3rd. St., San Juan Bautista, CA
Phone: (408) 623-4030
Ridgemark Golf and Country Club
3800 Airline Hwy., Hollister, CA
Phone: (408) 637-8151
San Juan Inn
Highway 156, San Juan Bautista, CA
Phone: (408) 623-4380
San Benito Inn
660 San Felipe Rd., Hollister, CA
If your pet flies with you, check with the airline about layovers. Long layovers can be extremely stressful for your pet and should be avoided. And be sure to retrieve your pet quickly after you arrive. Don't feed your dog just prior to traveling. This will help avoid motion sickness. When flying, traveling by train, or traveling to another country, be sure to check pet policies. Health certificates, obtainable from your veterinarian, are required for most commercial travel.
Exercise Is Essential
Routine exercise is important for your dog and it should be an important part of your basic health plan. In addition to helping to prevent obesity and poor muscle development, regular exercise maintains vigor in your pet. Provide exercise daily by walking or jogging with your dog, or by making sure your dog has play activity. When exercising, it's important to keep his physical condition in mind, especially if your dog is overweight.
Common First Aid
Knowing how to respond in an emergency situation can save your pet's life. Following are some first aid basics; however, it's always wise to consult your veterinarian if an injury has occurred: Minor cuts should be cleaned with antiseptic soap and water, then apply antiseptic medication and bandages. More severe cuts may require stitches. Consult your veterinarian. Poisoning can be caused by many things, from garden chemicals and human medicine to garbage. Symptoms may include retching, trembling, pain, vomiting and convulsions. If you know what your pet has ingested take the substance and some vomitus, if he has thrown up, along with your dog to the veterinarian. Finally, keep your veterinarian's phone number readily at hand and, whenever possible, call before bringing your pet in.
You Can Help Homeless Pets!
Save symbols from these quality pet food brands. They're worth cash to your local animal shelter!
For more information, and to get a brochure/envelope, stop by the Hollister Animal Shelter at 375 Fifth St., Hollister, CA 95023.
Pounce Tartar Control
Cycle (all stages)
High Protein 28
100% Natural Treats
Canine Carry Outs
Recipe Dog Treats
If you have chosen a cat for your pet, you've chosen well. These handsome, intelligent and affectionate animals have a special charm and dignity all their own. And adopting your cat from a humane society or animal shelter was the best choice of all. Some of the world's most famous cats have been found in animal shelters - including Morris the Cat! Cats can be the ideal pet. Although their "catitude" may seem independent, most cats are very social, preferring the company of others. If you already have a pet (even a dog), your new cat should adapt well. Introduce everyone in a non-threatening way and allow your new pet to adjust slowly to the new environment. Above all, never forget that your cat needs YOU - your care and affection. Knowledge of his habits and needs will help you give your new pet the best possible care, so you can enjoy each other's companionship for years to come.
Nutrition management is a major part of every good health plan. It means providing proper nutrition to your cat on a daily basis, throughout his lifetime. The right diet can protect your cat from a number of common health problems, and can speed recovery from illness. In fact, aside from providing regular veterinary care, a diet that delivers 100% of the essential vitamins, minerals, proteins, fats, and carbohydrates your cat needs is one of the most important things you can do to help increase her lifespan.
Cats have specific nutritive requirements, so make a high-quality cat food the staple of your pet's diet. The following are the basic nutritional components your cat's diet should provide for optimum health:
- Protein. Protein is the foundation for the enzymes and hormones that regulate your cat's body. It is essential for muscle development and maintenance, and is a key source of energy.
- Carbohydrates. Carbohydrates provide energy and vitality.
- Vitamins and Minerals. The following chart lists the essential vitamins and minerals your cat needs for good health.
- Taurine. Taurine is a key component that is absolutely essential to the good health of your cat. Taurine deficiency may result in blindness or the potentially fatal heart problem known as cardiomyopathy.
- Water. Fresh, clean, cool water is the single most important nutrient in your cat's diet. It is essential and should be available at all times. While food preferences may vary, a cat's need for fresh water remains constant.
Choosing The Right Diet
Dry or canned? The choice between dry and canned food is largely a matter of convenience for you and taste for your cat. Many cat owners feed their cats canned food for one meal and dry for the other. Others feed dry or canned exclusively. As long as the brand you feed provides 100% complete nutrition, and you follow recommended feeding guidelines for the amount, your cat should be fine. How much should you feed your cat? It's best to follow the recommended feeding guidelines provided by the manufacturer on your pet food label. Since most cats consume only the calories they need, less active cats will usually eat less. Be aware that obesity can be a serious health problem for cats. Your cat's feeding requirements will vary depending upon:
- whether she is spayed or he is neutered
If you have any questions, consult your veterinarian. When should you feed your cat? If you feed your cat canned food exclusively, you may wish to establish specific mealtimes to prevent the food from drying out or spoiling in warm weather. Dry food allows more flexibility. In free choice feeding, for example, your cat has access to her food at all times and is allowed to nibble throughout the day. For cats on diets to maintain urinary tract health, this is an optimum feeding plan, since it helps maintain a reduced urinary pH level throughout the day.
Some basic "Don'ts"
- Don't feed dog food to your cat. Dog foods don't contain the protein level, amino acids, or nutrients (like Taurine) that your cat needs.
- Don't feed your cat table scraps. You can't be sure you're supplying all the nutrients she needs, and you could create or increase finicky eating behavior.
- Don't feed your cat bones. These can splinter and become lodged in her throat or intestines.
- Don't feed your cat raw fish. It contains an enzyme that destroys some of the vitamins your cat needs, and may contain parasites.
- Don't give your cat milk. Cats over the age of 2 months don't really need it, and it often causes diarrhea in adult cats.
- Don't switch foods suddenly. To introduce new cat foods, mix a tiny amount with your cat's current food. Gradually increase the quantity of new food and reduce the amount of the old food, until your cat has adjusted to her new diet.
Kittens should remain with their mother until they are at least six weeks old. If you acquire a motherless kitten younger than six weeks, consult your veterinarian about feeding routine and how to eventually wean her to regular food. As soon as your kitten begins to eat solid food, keep a supply of fresh water available at all times. By the time she's two months old, your kitten will probably be eating regular cat food exclusively. Begin then to cut down on the number of meals by increasing the size of the servings. After your cat is six months old (yes, she's now a "cat"), she should be satisfied with one or two meals a day.
A young kitten should have a well-padded shallow box or basket in a warm, draft-free location. Cats will adapt happily to any house or apartment. You should provide your cat with his own special bed, but don't be surprised if he prefers other locations - like your bed, a sunny windowsill, or the laundry basket. Cats are safest at home. They really have no need to go outside, and can live happily indoors. If you must let your cat out, however, do so only in the daytime, preferably under your supervision. Serve an evening meal, so your cat has an incentive to come inside at a regular hour. If he doesn't show up you'll know something's wrong, and you can start looking for him right away. If he does come in for dinner, keep him in for the night. Cats are more likely to get in fights, be hit by cars, or be exposed to other cats and wildlife with infectious diseases when allowed out after sunset. Keeping your pet inside protects his life and health.
Litter Box Training
For cats, litter box use is almost instinctive, so you should have no trouble teaching toilet etiquette. Simply provide the litter pan and make sure your cat knows where it is. (In a large house, you may need two.) A very young kitten may have to be lifted into the pan a few times, but he'll soon get the idea. Make sure you place the box in a quiet location where your cat won't be disturbed by another pet or a child. This will help ensure that your cat doesn't stop using the box. There are two main categories of litter - clumping and non-clumping from which you can choose. Consider a clumping litter like Scoop Away®*, for continuous litter box cleanliness and superior odor control. If you prefer changing the entire litter box each time, or if your kitten sleeps or plays in the litter box, you probably should consider a non-clumping litter, such as Jonny Cat®*. Cats are fastidious by nature. Don't forget to do your part by keeping the litter pan fresh and clean. Remove solid wastes and urine residue once or twice a day with a litter spoon, and change the litter as needed. To help control litter box odors add ARM & HAMMER®* Cat Litter Deodorizer at litter changes and again when you clean out the wastes to effectively eliminate odor and keep litter first-day fresh longer. If your cat stops using his litter box, you should first take him to the veterinarian to be sure he is not ill. Urinary tract infections and other diseases can cause cats to quit using their boxes. Early treatment is vital to protect your pet. If illness is not the cause, consult with your veterinarian or an animal behavior specialist about the other possibilities that could explain this change in behavior. Together, you should be able to pinpoint the problem and find a solution.
Cats instinctively claw resistant materials to stretch and "exercise" their claws. A good quality scratching post will help keep nails healthy and will prevent his using your furniture and drapes. In addition, ask your veterinarian to show you how to trim your cat's claws when they grow too long.
Declawing is considered by many veterinarians and animal experts to be a last resort for controlling the results of a cat's instinctive clawing behavior. It is serious surgery and should never be taken lightly. Recovery can be painful and complications may arise. Some cat experts even suspect that declawing may be related to unfavorable behavior traits such as biting or litter box problems.
One of the nicest attributes of cats is their cleanliness. You will rarely, if ever, need to bathe your cat because cats wash themselves almost constantly. In an emergency, you can bathe him using warm water and mild soap (no detergents).
Long-haired cats should be combed daily with a steel comb made especially for cats. A brush will do the job for short-haired breeds. In addition, this daily grooming routine provides a good opportunity to examine your cat for any cuts, abrasions, or external parasites (i.e., fleas and ticks).
Cats, like humans, can get plaque buildup on their teeth, which can lead to gum inflammation and even infections. Since your cat can't brush, it's up to you to provide the special care that will help prevent this condition. Gentle home cleaning, regular veterinary examinations, and providing special "tartar control" treats like Pounce® Tartar Control™ can help reduce tartar build-up.
Cats, like dogs, should wear a current identification tag with your name, address, and phone number on it. Cats are curious creatures, and even housecats get out. Be sure to keep the information on the tag current - if you move, get an ID tag made with your new address and put it on your cat before the move. There are collars made especially for cats with a short piece of elastic sewn in. These collars, which can be buckled snugly around the neck, expand enough to allow escape if your cat gets hung up on a tree limb or fence. Kittens usually adapt quickly to wearing a collar. An adult cat may panic and writhe in frenzy for a while (usually about 10 minutes, although it will seem like hours to the owner). You can avoid the dramatics. The first time you put a collar on your cat, give him a catnip toy at the same time. By the time the toy is shredded and defeated, the collar will be long forgotten.
The Healthy Cat Veterinary Care
Regardless of her age, take your cat to the veterinarian for a checkup as soon as possible after you get her. Ask your local humane society, animal shelter, or other caring cat owners to recommend local veterinarians. Make sure you choose a knowledgeable doctor whose location and hours are convenient for you. During your first visit, the doctor will examine your cat thoroughly, including her eyes and ears; her heart and breathing; her abdomen and coat; and her mouth for disease or tartar. The doctor will check for external and internal parasites, such as fleas, ear mites, and intestinal worms, and will begin the vaccinations needed to protect your cat against fatal diseases. Keep in mind that with most vaccinations, booster shots may be required each year. Discuss the regular preventive care your pet will need. Ask what the signs of illness are so you'll know to get help immediately if your pet becomes ill, and find out how to get emergency help outside regular office hours. Preventive health care and planning for emergencies before they occur are keys to a long, healthy life for your cat.
Aside from helping to control animal overpopulation, spaying your female cat or neutering your male cat has many benefits for you and your pet. Roaming and fighting are often linked to the sex drive. Altered pets are calmer and more affectionate. Your cat will be healthier, and is less likely to develop certain cancers or be injured in fights with other animals. You'll be less likely to have to put up with staining or spraying. If your cat is a female, you won't have to put up with male cats wailing and spraying around your house when she's in season. Both male and female cats should be altered before they reach puberty. It has been shown that this procedure can be performed safely as early as eight weeks of age. Even if your cat comes into heat or becomes pregnant before you can have the surgery performed, she still can be safely spayed. Make an appointment with your regular veterinarian or check with your local humane society for the telephone number of low cost spay/neuter clinics in your area. Remember, cats do not need to reproduce to be happy.
You and Your Cat Handling and Training
The sooner you learn to understand your cat's behavior, the more pleasure you'll receive from his companionship. It is a common mistake to handle kittens too much and too roughly. Children, especially, should be taught that a kitten is a companion, not a toy. Let your kitten sleep when he wishes and play when he wishes. All infants need lots of rest. Don't pick up a cat by the scruff of his neck - only mother cats know how to do this properly. Instead, lift him by putting one hand under the front of the body and the other hand under the hindquarters. Don't expect to get obedience from a cat as you do from a dog. The word "obedience" simply isn't in his vocabulary. If you ask a cat to do something he wishes to do, he will consent graciously - and that's about the best you can expect. In addition, you must accept the fact that punishment has almost no effect - except that he may become frightened of you or indignant and ignore you altogether. Cats usually do not like loud noises. A loud "No! No!" or sharp clap of your hands can be very effective. NEVER hit a cat. If your cat exhibits behavior problems you cannot resolve, there are many behavioral professionals who can help.
The Aging Cat
With proper care and feeding, your cat may be with you to celebrate his 15th birthday or more. As he advances in years, he will need special care and understanding. He may not be as much fun as he used to be, so don't expect him to bounce around like a spry kitten. When your cat becomes a senior citizen, you will want to keep a special eye on him. Here are some things to watch for:
- Have his teeth checked regularly. Erosion of the tooth enamel can cause gum infections.
- If your cat is drinking an unusual amount of water, this could be an early indication of a kidney problem. If the symptoms persist, see your veterinarian immediately.
- Older cats are less active, so they don't need as much food. Watch his diet so that he doesn't put on a lot of weight.
- A loss of hearing frequently plagues the aging cat. You'll want to take this into consideration if you notice that he doesn't respond to your verbal commands.
- Drafts pose a special problem for the older cat. Since he will sleep more, make sure that his bed is comfortable and out of drafts.
- Be sure the litter pan is easily accessible. Older cats may have difficulty climbing stairs.
A Lifelong Friend
There are few greater compliments than the friendship of a cat. You can't buy or force a cat's friendship. You get affection and respect only when you earn it - and a cat's standards for human conduct are high. Provide a safe, warm, dry home, good nutrition, regular veterinary care and plenty of love and affection. These will go a long way toward making you and your pet the best of friends, and the rewards will be endless. Finally, recognize that even with the best of care, your friend's health and quality of life will one day decline. Your veterinarian can help you decide when the time has come to end his suffering. The kindest thing you can do is to help him pass on with dignity. It is natural to feel sad about this decision and to grieve. Eventually, you may get another cat who will be unique and wonderful, although it will never take the place of the pet you lost.
Other Animal Information
Small animals, dogs and cats for Adoption at the Hollister Animal Shelter, as well as lost pets, are now listed on the Pet Harbor web site. Please check our Adoptable Animals page to view all our amazing animals.
As with many other animals, reptiles carry Salmonella bacteria which can make people sick. To reduce the chance of infection, follow these safe reptile handling steps.
- Always was your hands thoroughly after you handle your pet reptile, its food and anything it has touched.
- Keep your pet reptile in a habitat designed for it; don't let it roam around the home.
- Keep your pet reptile and its equipment out of the kitchen or any area where food is prepared.
- Don't nuzzle or kiss your pet reptile.
- Keep reptiles out of homes where there are children under 1 year of age or people with weakened immune systems. Children under 5 should handle reptiles only with adult/parental guidance. And they should always remember to wash their hands afterwards.
** Taken from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
A Quick Guide to Rabbit Care
...because bunnies need more than carrots and a cage. Rabbits are intelligent, social, and cute animals who make wonderful companions. The problem is, too many people think of them as "low-maintenance" pets, when in reality they require lots of care and attention. Whether you've had a pet bunny for years or are about to bring one home for the first time, follow these simple guidelines to keep your rabbit happy and healthy.
Like all companion animals, rabbits should be kept inside with the family. Although rabbits should be given supervised run of the house, they need a place of their own for security and quiet time. Rabbits' cages should be spacious to give them room to exercise and stretch out. For a 6-pound rabbit, the cage should be at least 24-inches wide by 18-inches high by 24-inches deep. A large cage, however, is no substitute for socialization and running time around the house.
Housetraining and Bunny-proofing
You can help make housetraining easier for your rabbit by placing a litter box inside the cage and at least one outside the cage, too. Before you let your bunny run around the house, make sure all electrical cords are concealed. Rabbits are natural chewers, so give them chewing material to deter them from chewing furnishings.
If you have children, supervise them with the rabbit and make sure they never pick the rabbit up by the ears or let the body hang (a rabbit's weight must always be supported with another hand). A rabbit's natural instinct is to be close to the ground, so try sitting on the floor until your rabbit becomes more comfortable being handled.
Provide your rabbit with fresh water daily, and clean the water bottle frequently. When feeding your rabbit, remember that moderation is the key. A rabbit's diet should consist of a reputable brand of pellets; greens such as parsley, dandelion greens, and carrot tops; and small quantities of snacks such as golden raisins, shredded wheat, and dried bread. Never feed your rabbit lettuce, tomatoes, cabbage, or table scraps; these foods can cause bloat and diarrhea. Make sure your bunny has fresh hay available at all times for chewing and roughage.
Bunnies have sensitive respiratory and digestive systems. Because rabbits cannot vomit and are susceptible to fatal blockage, it is essential they be fed a proper diet and be groomed regularly to prevent hair balls (use special grooming tools, never scissors). Because your rabbit's teeth grow continuously and are susceptible to a condition called malocclusion (improper bite), you must check the teeth regularly. To learn more about rabbit health concerns, consult your veterinarian.
Spaying and Neutering
Spaying or neutering your rabbit not only helps fight rabbit overpopulation, but also improves litter box habits, corrects chewing behavior, and decreases territorial aggression. Have your rabbit sterilized between 3 1/2 and 6 months of age by a veterinarian experienced in rabbit care and surgery.
Housing: roomy cage, resting board, litter box, pellet bowl or feeder, water bottle, chewing material (such as untreated wood approved for rabbits). Foods: fresh pellets, fresh water, limited treats (veggies, fruit, barley, oats, crackers), hay (for chewing and to aid digestion), multiple enzymes (to aid digestion and prevent blockage), and petroleum laxative (for passing hair). Grooming: flea comb, brush, and toenail clippers. Cleaning supplies: dust-free litter (or paper-product litter), scoop, broom/dustpan, white vinegar (for urine accidents), and chlorine bleach (for disinfecting).
Center for Disease Control Rabies Information
Center for Disease Control Rabies and Kids Information
School of Veterinary Medicine Rabies Information
Rabies Vaccination Information
Feral Cats and Rabies
Stray Animal Information
STRAY ANIMALS AFTER NORMAL BUSINESS HOURS
The Animal Shelter is located at 1331 South Street in Hollister. If you find a stray dog or cat after normal business hours, you can place the animal in our night box which is located to the left of the shelter building. Please write down where the animal came from on the grease board attached to the kennel.
If you have an injured animal or animal emergency after normal business hours, please call the Police Department at (831) 636-4320 and an Animal Control Officer will be paged out.
If you have a deceased dog or cat after normal business hours, you may place that animal in a bag next to the night drop off kennels, please attach your name and phone number to the bag.
Stray Cat Informative Brochure (PDF File 500KB)