Month: March 2016

Report Sheds Light On Serious Problems in the Pet Food Industry

cat-eating

I’m passionate about species-appropriate feline nutrition, and have written extensively about the topic. I maintain a small list of brands of raw or grain-free canned food that I’m comfortable recommending after doing thorough research. These are brands that I either currently feed Allegra and Ruby, or have fed them in the past.

The pet food industry, like the food industry in general, is not known for its transparency, so it can be difficult to obtain accurate and current information. This is why I’m so appreciative of organizations like the Cornucopia Institute, whose mission is to provide information to family farmers, consumers and other stakeholders in the good food movement. While their focus is on promoting justice for family scale farming, the work they do benefits the health of all living beings, from humans to animals to plants.Continue Reading

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Natural, Non-Toxic Flea Control

natural-flea-control

Many of the flea treatments available today contain toxic chemicals. Even when used according to the manufacturer’s directions, these products can be toxic for pets and humans. Thankfully, there are safer, natural ways to control fleas. They may require a bit more effort on your part, but isn’t that effort worth it if it’s safer for you and your cat?Continue Reading

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Mews and Nips: Cat Personalities Are Not That Different From Humans

cat-personality

After administering an online feline personality test to 2,800 cats in Australia and New Zealand, researchers came to the conclusion that, just like humans, cats have five broad personality traits. The five feline traits that emerged were skittishness, outgoingness, dominance, spontaneity and friendliness. For more on this fascinating study, and how the human equivalent to the feline personality traits, visit the Chicago Tribune.

If you missed any of the stories featured on the Conscious Cat this week, here’s a recap:Continue Reading

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Introducing the New Hauspanther Collection by Primetime Petz

Hauspanther-Collection

Kate Benjamin’s mission is to improve the lives of cats and their humans through design, by showing cat guardians how to create living spaces that accommodate the natural instincts of cats without compromising the human’s sense of style and comfort. Kate has been doing this through her website, Hauspanther, and as co-author, with Jackson Galaxy, of two books on cat-friendly design. And cats’ (and their humans’) lives just got even better: Kate is launching her own line of cat furniture!Continue Reading

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Pet Me Here, but Don’t Pet Me There

cat-petting-locations

Most of us learn as we go about our cats’ petting preferences. Some cats like to be rubbed all over, others only like certain parts of their bodies touched, and some cats can be pretty forceful about letting us know that they would prefer not to be petted there, thank you very much, something that is also known as petting aggression.

A recent study aimed at finding out where cats enjoyed being stroked (or not) and whether the person doing the stroking had any influence on the cats’ response. Continue Reading

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Global Pet Expo 2016: Highlights from the World’s Biggest Pet Product Show

global-pet-expo-2016

Last week I made my annual trip to Global Pet Expo in Orlando. This trade show is the largest pet product trade show in the US, with 6.3 miles of display space featuring 1,300 vendors from nearly 40 countries. I tried to see as much as I could in three days, and I know I walked a lot more than 6 miles each day! In the coming weeks and months, I’ll be bringing you a lot more information about some of the fantastic new products I saw there. Today, I’d like to share just a few personal highlights with you.

Hauspanther-cat-furniture

I was most excited about getting my first look at the new furniture line by Hauspanther’s Kate Benjamin. Kate is launching this new line in conjunction with Primetime Petz later this year. Needless to say, with Kate behind the design, the pieces in the collection are not only well-designed from a cat’s perspective, they’re also beautiful! I’ll show you the line in more detail later this week.

cat-scratching-post

Pioneer Pet Products introduced two new products I liked a lot: a variation of one of our all time favorite scratching posts, the Ultimate Scratch ‘n Play, and Bootsies Corner Scratcher.

pet-gps-tracker

Our friends at Podtrackers had a super cool booth display featuring creator Sebastian Langton’s gorgeous cat Smokey. Pod is still the smallest of the GPS trackers on the market, and as such, the one best suited to cats. Pod is one of the seven prizes you can win in our anniversary giveaway!

vesper-cat-furniture

I was delighted to see new products in the Vesper line of cat furniture by Hagen. Even after everything I saw at Global this year, I still consider this line one of the most beautiful lines of cat furniture. The line will also be available in a new pretty red color, in addition to the walnut and white finishes.

valerian-cat-toys

Bavarian Cat Toys had a super fun holiday display that made me remember my childhood Christmases in Germany. The display showed off some of their new holiday themed toys.

cat-bowl
Kate Benjamin with Mimi

The folks at Dr. Catsby’s booth had one of the most creative displays, and even better, they had a kitty at their booth! The lovely Mimi was one of the most mellow and relaxed cats I’ve ever seen and made a purrfect ambassador for this innovative bowl designed to prevent whisker stress.

Global-St.Patrick's-Day
with Nikki Moustaki, her dog Jasmine, and Kate Benjamin

And of course, no trade show would be complete without a little personal fun. On St. Patrick’s Day, a group of us went out to celebrate. And yes, I know it looks like Jasmine had a few too many cocktails, but I assure you that the only thing she had to drink was water!

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Review: Creative Cues From the Cat

Creative-Cues-From-the-Cat

Cats have served as inspurration for creative types through the ages. Ernest Hemingway, Edgar Allen Poe and Mark Twain all shared their lives with cats. John Lennon and David Bowie were both cat lovers. Salvadore Dali and Picasso both had cats. Creative Cues From the Cat: The Visionary Virtues of Our Feline Friends turns to cats for clues about living with vision, and how to follow the lead of the cat to turn that vision into creative reality.Continue Reading

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Meowsic: Study Seeks to Understand Human-Cat Communication By Analyzing Cat Sounds

meowsic-study

A fascinating new Swedish research project is looking at gaining a better understanding of human-cat communications by analyzing how voice, melody (intonation) and speaking style – in human speech as well as in cat vocalizations – influence the communication between cats and humans.Continue Reading

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Cats on a Diet: Will They Still Love You?

fat-cat

Last week we wrote about the obesity epidemic among America’s cats (58% of cats in this country are either overweight or obese) and the serious health risks of obesity. What makes this trend so disturbing is that it is created entirely by the guardians who love their cats. There are no obese cats in the wild. Our cats rely on us to make appropriate nutritional choices for them, and one of the biggest mistake cat guardians can make is to equate food with love.

Getting a cat to lose weight can be challenging. It may require making changes to a cat’s feeding schedule, changing the food itself, increasing the amount of time spent playing with the cat, and more. Read Weight Loss Tips for Cats for guidance on how to get your kitty to a healthy weight.Continue Reading

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Yogi Cats by Paige Hodges Book Review

Yogi-cats

I’m pretty sure cats are the original yoga masters. After all, who better to show us the importance of meditating, and keeping our mind and body flexible and strong? Yogi Cats explores the connection between yoga and cats with a combination of practical advice, quotes by famous yoga practitioners, and a healthy dose of feline wisdom. Accompanied by whimsical illustrations, this little book is a treasure.Continue Reading

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