conscious living

Cut Cooling Costs Without Sacrificing Your Indoor Cat’s Comfort

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During the hot summer months, it goes without saying that you need to take precautions for your outdoor pets to protect them from heat stroke and other heat related problems, but even indoor cats require special attention, especially if you’re trying to save on cooling costs by turning the air conditioning up when you’re not at home.

TXU and the SPCA of Texas recommend that pet parents set thermostats no higher than  78-80 degrees, and advise against turning off the air conditioner altogether. If your cat has a health condition, be sure to check with your vet on a good temperature setting. A programmable thermostat can make controlling your indoor temperature easy. With some models, you can even control your thermostat via your smartphone.

TXU offers the following tips to save energy during the summer and still keep your cats safe and comfortable:Continue Reading

Cruelty-Free Kitty Helps You Choose Beauty Products That Are Not Tested on Animals

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Conscious living means making conscious choices about all aspects of our lives, including the cosmetics we use on ourselves. Using chemical free beauty products is not just better for you, it’s also better for your cats, because not only does your skin come in contact with those products, but so do your cat’s fur, paws, and mouth – and some of the chemicals used in conventional cosmetics can be harmful to both humans and cats.

Another consideration that is important to me when choosing cosmetics and personal care products is that they are not tested on animals.Continue Reading

Giveaway: Cruelty-Free Alpaca Cat Bed Mat from Wrapt Cats

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This giveaway is sponsored by Wrapt Cats

Instead of our usual Conscious Cat Sunday feature, we’re bringing you a special giveaway today – because the Alpaca Cat Bed Mat from Wrapt Cats is all about conscious living. This beautiful mat is handmade from a beautiful white alpaca who is living the great life with the rest of her herd out in the Pennsylvania countryside. Her shorn fleece (shaved from the back of the alpaca, the animal is not harmed in the process) was worked directly into a rug in an ecologically friendly way using only soap, water, and a whole lot of lady powered friction. Continue Reading

Review: Do Unto Animals: A Friendly Guide to How Animals Live, and How We Can Make Their Lives Better

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I rarely review non-cat books on The Conscious Cat, but Do Unto Animals by former veterinary technician, animal advocate and wife of comedian and former Daily Show host Jon Stewart, is such a purrfect fit for what this site is all about that I want to share it with you. After all, conscious living encompasses caring for all living beings on this earth, not just cats. Continue Reading

Conscious Cat Sunday: Why Conscious Living is Good for Your Cats

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The tag line of this site is “Conscious Living, Health and Happiness for Cats and their Humans.” I choose this motto, along with the name for the site, because I believe that living consciously is the key to happiness for all of us.

What is conscious living?

The definition of the word conscious “to be aware of one’s own existence, sensations, thoughts and surroundings”.  It also means “being fully aware or sensitive to something”, “aware of oneself”, and “deliberate and intentional”.  All these terms take us right to the heart of what conscious living means.Continue Reading

Conscious Cat Sunday: random acts of kindness

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 My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness. – The Dalai Lama 

Have you ever been the recipient of a random act of kindness? Maybe someone let you go ahead in the grocery store line because you only had one item. The driver in the car ahead of you at the toll booth paid your toll. A friend you haven’t talked to in a while called for no reason at all. If you’ve been on the receiving end of such an act of kindess, you know how wonderful it feels.

Research suggests that positive emotions help contribute to better physical and emotional health. Kindness is a beautiful way to supercharge your health. Kindness is a quality that I look for in almost every person I form any kind of relationship with – it matters that much to me. Kindness to cats, and all animals, is the most important to me, but kindness to other human beings is a close second. One of my pet peeves: people who are unkind to waiters or other service personnel.

I found myself thinking a lot about kindness this past week, as I was watching all the coverage about Hurricane SandyContinue Reading

Advance praise for Purrs of Wisdom

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There’s a lot of excitement that comes with getting close to a book’s publication date: working with editors, cover designer, book designer, and publisher. Final revisions. Spreading the word about the book. Lining up reviews and local events.

One of the most exciting parts about this stage is getting endorsements, also known as “blurbs,” for the book. What’s even more exciting is that this early praise comes from writers and editors who I greatly admire.

Christine Davis, the author and illustrator of Author of For Every Cat An Angel and Forever Paws:

Purrs of Wisdom, by Ingrid King, is a treat for anyone who is enchanted by all things feline! The book isContinue Reading

Conscious Cat Sunday: making decisions

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Do you ever have trouble making decisions? Perhaps you’re being too rational about it. Life isn’t all black and white, and a decision is rarely all right or all wrong. Contrary to the picture above, there really are no wrong decisions (although the kitten in the photo might disagree), there are only different choices.  Additionally, very few decisions are irreversible. We always have the power to make a different choice.

Another reason why making a decision can be difficult is fear. Fear of the outcome, fear of how a “wrong” decision may impact our lives and the lives of those around us, fear of taking some risks. A fear-based decision is never a good decision. Fear limits. Fear is never truth.  If you feel fear, remember to connect with your spiritual core and remind yourself that there is no room for fear when you are connected to your true self.

Psychotherapist and bestselling author Margaret Paul, Ph. D., writes in an article on The Huffington Post that “making decisions can be difficult, but we make it especially hard when we try to decide from our mind, Continue Reading

Book review: Healing Animals and The Vision of One Health by Michael W. Fox

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Let me start this review by saying that Healing Animals and The Vision of One Health: Earth Care and Human Care is not a cat book. So why am I reviewing it here? Because it is an amazing book that touches on so many things that matter a great deal to me: conscious living, animal health, human health, the health of our planet, the health care crisis for both animals and humans, and the many pitfalls of commercial pet food, to name just a few.

Michael Fox is a veterinarian best known for his syndicated “Animal Doctor” column. Born in England, the former vice president of The Humane Society of the United States and the author of more than 40 adult and children’s books on animal care, animal behavior and bioethics, is a renowned advocate of animal rights and a sharp and eloquent critic of the biotechnology industry. As a professor, bioethicist and veterinarian, Dr. Fox has spearheaded the movement to foster the ethical treatment of animals and the environment since 1967.

His new book presents a vision of a worldContinue Reading

Harmony House for Cats combines cat-friendly and green design

 Harmony House for Cats New Shelter Press Release Photo

Here on The Conscious Cat, we’re all about conscious living. Conscious living means making choices that are in alignment with our value system, and for me, that also includes “green living:” making decisions that benefit our planet. When green living and cats come together, it’s definitely a reason to celebrate.

When I received the press release about Harmony House for Cats announcing its grand opening of their new eco-friendly shelter, I was intrigued, and asked for more information. The shelter, which will open on July 8, is slated to be Chicago’s first “net zero energy” commercial building. Net zero energy means that the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable energy sources over the course of one year is equal or  greater than the amount of energy used by the building. The building uses cutting edge geothermal wells, solar thermal panels and  solar photovoltaics technology to accomplish this.Continue Reading

Conscious Cat Sunday: stop procrastinating

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Don’t postpone joy until you have learned all of your lessons. Joy is your lesson. – Alan Cohen

Are you a procrastinator? Do you habitually put off doing things you know you should be doing now?

According to Wikipedia, procrastination is defined as the act of replacing high-priority actions with tasks of lower priority, or doing something from which one derives enjoyment, and thus putting off important tasks to a later time.

But there’s more to procrastination than just not getting things done. Contrary to what many people believe, procrastination is not a time management problem. Procrastination is about postponing the life you were meant to live. It keeps us from living in the moment, from living a life filled with joy.

Procrastination is about fear, and living your life from a place of fear leads to living a very small life. Continue Reading