Saturday, 05 September 2020 15:12

Talkin' Pets News Featured

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Talkin' Pets News

September 5, 2020

Host - Jon Patch

Co-Host - Jasmine Johnson - Jasmine the Dog Trainer

Producer - Matt Matera

Network Producer - Darian Sims

Social Media / Consultant - Bob Page

Special Guest - Which Cat?  Compiled and edited by Robert Duffy An Essential guide to Britain's 20 most popular breeds - Hour 1 at 5pm ET


Fifty-four percent of American households have pets, according to a new report from Packaged Facts.

That amounts to nearly 68 million households. The research was published in the market research report Pet Population and Ownership Trends in the U.S.: Dogs, Cats, and Other Pets, 4th Edition.

While pet population estimates amid pandemic, economic and job market disruptions are tentative, Packaged Facts currently projects 4 percent growth in the pet ownership households base in 2020. This growth will bring the total number of pet-owning households in the U.S. to nearly 71 million.

Packaged Facts expects robust growth in the number of dog-owning households as well as cat-owning households, who in combination make up 96 percent of pet-owning households overall.

Currently, by type of pet, 39 percent (49 million) have pet dogs, up from 36 percent in 2009. That percentage gain, compounded by incremental population gain, has been a major driver of pet market growth over the last decade. In turn, 24 percent (30 million) have pet cats, with household ownership for cats hovering around that range over the last decade.

Roughly a tenth of American households have pets other than dogs or cats, including pet fish, birds, reptiles, hamsters and rabbits. This represents roughly 19 percent of pet-owning households overall, or nearly 13 million.


As the country celebrates National Dog Day, Tampa, FL pet owners can relax in the knowledge that they're living in a city known nationwide for catering to four-legged friends.

The personal finance website, WalletHub, released its list of 2020's Most Pet-Friendly Cities with Tampa ranking No. 1 on the list.

To further clinch Tampa's fur-friendly reputation, the money management website SmartAsset released its Most Pet-Friendly Cities in America 2020 Edition, and Tampa ranked sixth on the list.

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor couldn't help but brag about the city's status on Twitter, posting photos for the city's "first dog, Alcaldesa, making herself home in Castor's office.

A year ago in August, Castor adopted the mixed breed from the Humane Society of Tampa Bay, naming her Alcadesa, which appropriately mean "mayoress" in Spanish.

Since then, "Desa" has been Castor's constant shadow and the hands-down most photographed dog in Tampa Bay, showing up in just about every photo taken of the mayor.

"She just brings a smile to everybody's face and it changes your day. You walk through the office door in the morning and everyone sees her, comes up, pets her and that's how conversations start and that's how morale improves," Castor said.

Desa isn't the only reason for Tampa its pet-friendly status. The city was lauded for its support of pet rescues and pet adoption events such as the annual Clear the Shelters nationwide pet adoption drive.

Moreover, Tampa has the sixth-highest number of dog parks per 100,000 residents across the country.

Tampa earned high marks for its pet-friendly restaurants, bars, breweries, hotels, apartment complexes and offices.

Tampa pet lovers also support a healthy number of pet-related businesses including dog walkers, pet sitters, groomers, all-natural and specialty pet food stores, boarding facilities, pet spas and day cares, veterinarians, dog washes and trainers.


A man in Brisbane, Australia, returned home to find two huge snakes had fallen through his kitchen ceiling.

The carpet pythons measured around 2.9 meters (9.5 feet) and 2.5 meters (8.2 feet), according to snake catcher Steven Brown, of Brisbane North Snake Catchers and Relocation, who removed them from the property.

"Both these snakes were two of the fattest snakes I've seen, as in the amount of muscle they had," Brown told CNN, adding that they were "very well fed."

In the post, Brown revealed that his customer had found two very large coastal carpet pythons in his house when he got home.

"Wasnt till I got there that I found they had come crashing through the customers ceiling in the kitchen (sic)," he wrote.

When Brown arrived, he found one of the snakes next to the front door and the other in a bedroom, he said.

The snake catcher told CNN that it is breeding season for the snakes and it is likely the two males were fighting over a nearby female, who could have been in the roof or somewhere around the house.

"I was unable to check (the) roof cavity as there was no crawl space between (the) roof and ceiling," said Brown, who said it is common to find the snakes in warm, dry roof cavities in the cooler winter months.

Carpet pythons are non-venomous and not aggressive if left alone, said Brown.

"No snake wants to hurt anyone," he added, but they will defend themselves if threatened.

The creatures were relocated 1 kilometer (about 0.6 miles) away from the man's house, in a state forest, Brown said.

Snakes are not uncommon sightings in people's homes in Australia.

Last month, a woman in North Queensland who had difficulty flushing her toilet was shocked to find four snakes coiled up inside the cistern.

Sofie Pearson, 25, who lives on a cane farm, told CNN affiliate 7News that, when she went to her bathroom, she had to push down hard on the button to get the toilet to flush.

"I was a bit confused," she told 7News. "So I figured I'd just pull the top off and check what the issue was."

What she discovered were four common tree snakes, the largest of which was 3.2 feet (1 meter) long, 7News reported.


The postal slowdown has affected everything from Amazon deliveries to prescription medications and has prompted concerns related to mail-in balloting in November. But it has been particularly disruptive to a number of businesses that rely on the Postal Service to safely ship something you may not have known, or wanted to know, can be sent through the mail: live animals, including chicks, crickets, lizards, frogs and even scorpions. For those businesses, a shipping delay is often a literal matter of life and death.

The Postal Service has over 100 years of experience shipping live animals, starting in 1918 when it began allowing live day-old chicks to be mailed. Newly hatched chicks are uniquely amenable to mailing as they can survive without food or water for 72 hours after hatching, according to a bulletin by the Poultry Welfare Extension, a project of several public universities.

Today, millions of pounds of live poultry get mailed each year, according to the Extension, although exact numbers are not available and representatives from the Postal Service did not respond to requests for comment. And poultry is just the beginning. The agency also has highly detailed regulations for the safe shipping of bees, adult birds, scorpions and “other small, harmless, coldblooded animals,” from worms to lizards. Bees, for instance, may not be shipped via air, with the exception of queen bees, who may travel by air “accompanied by up to eight attendant honeybees.”

In addition to chickens, other poultry species that can be shipped when chicks are a day old include “ducks, emus, geese, guinea birds, partridges, pheasants (only during April through August), quail, and turkeys.” Chicks of any species older than 24 hours may not be shipped. Many adult birds, however, can be shipped, provided they weigh between 6 ounces and 25 pounds, which is enormous for a bird — approximately the size of an adult pelican.

All poisonous and venomous animals are prohibited, with the exception of live scorpions, provided those scorpions are intended for use in medical research or the production of antivenin. Scorpions may only be shipped via ground transport, and only in a double container system in which each container layer is clearly marked “Live Scorpions.”

Mammals are prohibited, as are all spiders. Baby alligators are allowed, however, as long as they are under 20 inches long. The slowdown at the Post Office has caused a lot of issues in regards to delays and DOA [dead on arrival">Josh’s Frogs, said his company had to stop sending live frogs, insects and other animals through the Postal Service after noticing an “exponential” increase in delays starting early July, resulting in more than half of its shipments ending up late — a potentially disastrous situation when dealing with delicate animals like crested geckos and dart frogs. Willard said that while low prices are a benefit of using the Postal Service, there’s something less tangible about it as well.

“People usually have better relationships with their postal workers,” Willard said. “Their mailmen realize they’ve got some live stuff so they’ll give the order extra care,” for instance, or the workers at The Post office will call customers to let them know they’ve got a live order waiting. ----------------------------------------------------------


Having a professional pet-sitting or dog-walking business owner is about much more than simply playing with dogs and cuddling cats. In addition to obtaining a business license (if required), getting adequate pet-sitter insurance and bonding, and taking advantage of any training you may need to provide quality pet care, there are many business decisions you will need to make to set you on the path to pet-sitting success.

Many new pet sitters and dog walkers fall into the trap of initially offering their services at very low rates to try to build a client base quickly. Unfortunately, this can have many negative consequences. Extremely low rates will not sustain the business long term. New sitters may find themselves overworked, but still not bringing in enough money to cover their basic business expenses. Low rates may also attract less than ideal clientele—pet owners who base their decisions solely on price point. These types of clients will likely leave as soon as they can find someone cheaper and may not place a great emphasis on finding a qualified, professional pet-care option.

Organizations like Pet Sitters International can provide national averages for common pet-sitting services, but it is also a good idea to research what other professional pet sitters (not hobbyists), boarding facilities and doggie day cares in your area charge to get an idea of local pricing. As a general rule, boarding facilities and day cares may be slightly less expensive for one dog (when compared to the cost of three to four daily pet-sitting visits), but are often significantly more expensive for multiple pets — as many professional pet sitters charge by time, instead of a flat, per-pet fee.

As you gain more pet-sitting clients, you’ll receive a variety of requests and questions from clients, including:

  • “Can I pay when I return from vacation?”
  • “Will you walk my dog with my neighbor’s dog?”
  • “Since only my cat will be staying home, can you visit every other day?”

Taking time to think out, formalize, then write down your company’s policies and procedures will save you a lot of time — and headaches — in the future! Plus, by having this information pre-determined, you will be able to answer clients’ questions about your business confidently and avoid having to decide on the fly how you will handle specific situations that may arise (such as late payments).

Many new pet sitters feel uncomfortable reaching out to other established pet sitters and dog walkers. Don’t make this mistake! Even though pets are your passion, pet sitting can be a lonely career. There is strength in numbers, and there’s likely no pet-sitting situation you’ll encounter that has not already been experienced by another pet sitter. Plus, sometimes you just need to vent or share your daily joys and struggles with someone who understands what you do all day. Fellow pet sitters in your area can also be an important source of referrals when they are unable to service pet owners. Look for pet-sitter associations, industry conferences and online groups to connect with other pet-sitting and dog-walking business owners.


When it comes to canine age groups and what they mean, pet owners might benefit from a crash course from an animal health professional.

A recent survey of 1,000 American puppy owners found that while most have a general idea of when their pooch has reached full maturity, some confusion remains.

Indeed, the majority of those surveyed did not realize a dog’s breed impacts the duration of the animal’s puppy stage. Specifically, 47 percent of small-breed owners and 92 percent of large-breed owners were unaware of the recommendation to feed puppy food for up to a year and up to two years, respectively.
“Puppies have specific nutritional requirements to help support their rapid growth and development,” says Callie Harris, DVM, a veterinarian at Purina, which conducted the survey. “Similar to babies, puppies’ bodies are fast-growing, but unlike babies, puppies pack all their growth into one to two short years.”

When asked why they no longer fed puppy food, 36 percent of owners who had stopped said they believed their pet had already reached adult size.

As a general rule, dogs less than one year of age are considered puppies, but different breeds mature at different rates:

  • toy and small breed dogs weighing less than 30 lbs. may reach full maturity between nine and 12 months of age;
  • dogs weighing between 30 and 80 lbs. (i.e. medium breeds) take 12 to 16 months to fully mature; and
  • large and giant breeds (heavier than 80 lbs.) can take up to 24 months to reach full maturity.
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When it comes to our four-legged friends, the Golden Gate City knows how to treat a dog right.

This is according to insurance company, Coya. In honor of International Dog Day (Aug. 26), the group has released the 2020 Best Cities for Dogs Index, calculating the most canine-friendly cities around the world.

The study looked at 50 cities cited previously as positive places for dogs and analyzed them based on three main factors:

  • infrastructure;
  • cost; and
  • regulation and ownership.

San Francisco, Calif., topped the overall list, scoring high in the categories of dog-friendly restaurants, lifetime costs, and number of dog parks. Other North American cities that secured a place in the top 10 include Seattle, Wash. (no. 2); Chicago, Ill. (no. 8); and Toronto, Canada (no. 9).

“While it’s true a furry friend can be happy in any city, as long as it’s well taken care of and loved by its owner, it’s also a fact that it’s far more enjoyable for a dog to live in a city with plentiful green spaces, responsible pet owners, and plenty of puppy pals to play with,” says Coya’s founder and CEO, Andrew Shaw. “We conducted this study to help inform dog lovers and owners alike about the dog-friendliness of their local cities, and how they may compare to others around the world.”

In other findings, Seattle was named the city with the most dogs per capita (246.67 per 1,000 inhabitants), while Miami, Fla., placed second (187.66 per 1,000) and San Francisco landed seventh (139.87 per 1,000).

When scoring the number of veterinarians per dog, however, only one U.S. city (Chicago) cracked the top 10, ranking eighth with a calculated score of 86.89.

Additionally, five U.S. locales—New York City.; Miami; Los Angeles, Calif.; Chicago; and Seattle—were among the top 10 cities with the highest rates of abandonment.

“One of the few positive outcomes during this global pandemic has been that dog shelters around the world have seen a huge increase in adoptions as more people work from home and look for furry companionship; however, there is a danger that once things begin to return to normal, owners may find they don’t have the time or the funds to be able to keep their new pet,” Shaw says. “We hope this study can raise awareness about abandoned dogs and serve as a reminder that pets are for life, not just for pandemics.”

To provide feline patients with the best preventive care possible, it is imperative veterinarians determine a cat’s unique risk factors.

That’s the message emphasized in the 2020 AAHA/AAFP Feline Vaccination Guidelines, a new release from a panel of experts convened by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) and the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP).

The resource stresses the need for a comprehensive understanding of individualized feline risk factors, including life stage, environment, and lifestyle, to determine a proper preventive health-care plan.

“We no longer can simply ask a client if the cat is ‘indoors’ or ‘outdoors,’” says AAFP’s president, Kelly St. Denis, MSc, DVM, DABVP (feline practice). “A client may not correctly interpret what they might consider brief or low-risk outdoor access, which may contain information that contributes to your risk assessment.

“A risk assessment of the other cats living in the home is also critical, as these risks extend to all other cats in the house. By asking these questions you can better review the cat’s risk for safety, nutrition, behavior, and zoonotic disease.”

The guidelines, which serve as an update to the 2013 AAFP Feline Vaccination Advisory Panel Report, were written based on recent evidence-based recommendations and peer-reviewed literature on feline vaccinations with input from both AAHA and AAFP.

“Working together with these two organizations affords our veterinary community exposure to the wisdom of colleagues who are dedicated to increasing the standard of care for cats,” says Amy ES Stone, DVM, PhD, who chaired the publication’s task force.

The guidelines include specific resources to help animal health professionals educate clients, such as:

  • a lifestyle-based feline vaccine calculator;
  • FAQs and tips for client and staff education; and
  • recommendations for core and noncore vaccines for pet and shelter-housed cats.

Veterinarians should use these guidelines in conjunction with their own clinical experience and expert opinion, AAHA says, while also considering the needs of an individual patient.

“Cats used to be vaccinated for certain diseases based solely on whether they went outside or not. Those times have changed,” says AAHA senior veterinary officer, Heather Loenser, DVM. “We need to tailor vaccine protocols for individual pets, rather than basing vaccination decisions on a single factor.”

To access the guidelines visit


Though infrequent, musculoskeletal injuries in horses may require cast immobilization. While immobilizing a limb helps the primary injury heal, prolonged casting can be problematic for the patient.

Healthy bones in the affected limb undergo a process called “disuse osteoporosis” in which the bone loses mass and density secondary to reduced forces on the bone during immobilization. When the cast is removed, a period of remobilization must ensue to help the bones and soft tissues regain strength. Even with a remobilization period, some horses may never fully recover their pre-injury strength and soundness.

According to one group of veterinarians, cast immobilization of the fetlock resulted in either permanent or semipermanent bone, joint, and soft-tissue degeneration.* These changes occurred after eight weeks of cast immobilization and resulted in persistent lameness, joint swelling, decreased range of motion and bone density, and other degenerative changes found on radiography, computed tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging.

After a 12-week remobilization period, the degenerative changes had not reversed. In fact, the veterinarians observed degenerative changes were more extensive than they originally predicted. Because of this, they recommended that casting should be used judiciously, with the cast removed as early as possible as normal motion and weight-bearing is critical to recovery.

Any horse that is suddenly stall-bound will undergo some decrease in bone mass and density even if they are not fitted with a cast. Nutritionists at Kentucky Equine Research recommend offering nutritional bone support for any horse that has a sudden decrease in mobilization and weight-bearing, such as what might occur with limited turnout or stall rest.

DuraPlex provides vitamins and minerals necessary for strong bone development, including a special protein that stimulates bone collagen production while suppressing bone destruction. This supplement also prevents bone loss in situations that cause bone demineralization,” explained Catherine Whitehouse, M.S., a nutrition advisor for Kentucky Equine Research. “Research demonstrated that DuraPlex attenuates the natural demineralization of bone that occurs when horses are stalled without turnout or exercise.”

Another research-proven supplement called Triacton supports bone health and reduces bone demineralization during confinement. Triacton improves bone density in working and young horses, and supports digestive health by buffering the stomach and hindgut. Triacton is available to Australian horse owners.


A ship carrying more than 40 crew members and some 6,000 head of cattle has disappeared off the coast of Japan after capsizing in typhoon-lashed seas, according to a crew member who so far is the only known survivor.

The Gulf Livestock 1, en route from New Zealand to China, issued a distress call early Wednesday from a position west of Japan's Amami Oshima island.

The mayday call, to which the Japanese coast guard responded, was sent as Typhoon Maysak was tracking through the region as a powerful Category 4 storm. Maysak has since passed the area where the ship went missing, and the weather for the ongoing search is fine, Japanese coast guard regional spokesman Yuichiro Higashi said, according to The Associated Press.

The 450-foot livestock carrier, built in 2002, had a crew of 43, of which 39 are from the Philippines, two from New Zealand and two from Australia, the Japanese coast guard said.  The Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported that a Queensland veterinarian, Lukas Orda, was among those aboard.

The lone crew member recovered so far, 45-year-old chief officer Sareno Edvarodo from the Philippines, was plucked from the water Wednesday night after being spotted by a Japanese navy P-3C surveillance aircraft. No wreckage from the ship has been found, the coast guard said.

Edvarodo told rescuers that the vessel lost an engine and then capsized when it was hit broadside by a wave. The crew was then ordered to don life jackets. Edvarodo said he abandoned ship but did not see any other crew members in the water after the ship sank.

Gulf Livestock 1 was carrying 5,867 head of cattle from Napier, New Zealand, to Jingtang in Tangshan, China, according to New Zealand's foreign ministry.

Following the accident, New Zealand's Ministry for Primary Industries said it was temporarily suspending new cattle livestock export applications pending an investigation. The ministry "wants to understand what happened on the sailing of the Gulf Livestock 1," a spokesperson was quoted as saying by the New Zealand Herald., a website that follows the shipping industry, noted numerous accidents involving livestock carriers over the years in which tens of thousands of animals were lost.

In November, the Queen Hind, a livestock carrier loaded with more than 14,000 sheep, experienced "maneuvering issues" and capsized not far from a wharf. Only a few hundred animals were rescued, according to The Maritime Executive. In 2016, 3,000 sheep died aboard a vessel that caught fire and sank in rough weather off Somalia.

In another similar disaster nearly a quarter-century ago, some 67,000 sheep died aboard a vessel after it caught fire and was abandoned by its crew east of the Seychelles. All but one of the crew survived.


While residents in south Hillsborough County Florida may be accustomed to seeing five-foot tegus wandering their neighborhoods, it’s a new occurrence for people in St. Petersburg.

Five of the lizard-like animals have been captured so far, but at least two are still at large and “there may be many more,” writes Dan Quinn, who is coordinating the search for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).

There is no evidence that there is a breeding population in St. Petersburg, and only one of the animals has been measured by FWC staff, he adds.  It was just three feet long – they can grow up to five feet. It’s likely that the animals were released or escaped from a collector in the neighborhood. Until July 1, it was legal to own a tegu, but they are now regulated under Florida state law.  

Although they appear to be aggressive when caged, there is no evidence that they are dangerous to people or pets. “While tegus are omnivores and eat a variety of plant and animal matter, we are not aware of any predatory attacks on pets or people in the state of Florida.”

That said, FWC recommends that owners keep a close eye on their pets and don’t allow them to roam outside alone.

The remaining tegus are likely burrowed under a structure or hiding in debris. “We recommend covering outdoor openings in buildings and clearing yards of debris to minimize hiding and burrowing areas,”.

Their diets may include fruits, vegetables, eggs, insects, and small animals such as lizards, juvenile tortoises and rodents. Cat or dog food is also part of their diet and should not be left outside overnight.

Released pets remain a primary source of introduced species in Florida. Owners can apply for a personal use permit or turn their exotic pet into FWC at no cost or penalty to reduce the possibility that they are released into the wild by owners.

FWC staff and volunteers are monitoring the 10 wildlife cameras deployed in the neighborhood. If you see one, call the exotic species hotline at 888-IveGot1 (888-483-4681). Please provide the exact location and take a picture if you can.

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