Heartwarming Video: New Rescue Pup Brings Joy to Dog Mourning Loss of His Brother

Banksy and Hamilton were best canine companions, doing everything together until Hamilton passed away.  Banksy was deeply affected by the loss of his best friend.  His owners became very concerned, as Banksy became depressed and spent most of his time sleeping.

They decided that adding a new dog to the family might be the answer.  Enter Mochi, an adorable fluffball from Jindo Love Rescue, an organization that saves and adopts out dogs from the Korean dog meat trade.

Mochi also just happens to look like a miniature version of Hamilton!  After a successful introduction, Banksy and Mochi have become inseparable, sharing everything from toys to walks to Puppuccino drinks side by side.

Watch the adorable video from The Dodo below.  You can also follow the adventures of Banksy and Mochi (with their new friend Bowie) on their Instagram account!

 

Domestic Cats Face Dangers From Urban Coyotes

The US National Park Service recently completed a two-year study on the diet of coyotes in the Los Angeles, California area.  The results indicate that our cats could be at greater risk for being eaten by coyotes than we thought.

Researchers analyzed over 3,200 samples of coyote poop (called scat) from Los Angeles and surrounding communities.  They also compared the urban coyote samples with samples from more suburban areas that are closer to their natural habitat.

They found that the diet of urban coyotes was influenced by living so close to humans.  The coyotes routinely ate human food scraps and commercial pet food.  They also ate a lot of ornamental fruits commonly found in our gardens.

Unfortunately, free-roaming cats–and even cats allowed outside but restricted to enclosed yards–are also on the menu for urban coyotes.  Domestic cat remains were found in 20% of the scat, the third most common component after human and pet foods and ornamental fruits.

The scat of coyotes from more rural areas had only 4% of domestic cat and it also had less human and pet food and ornamental fruit remains.  Rabbits were the most common part of the non-urban coyotes’ diet.

Pet owners in areas with high numbers of coyotes should always keep their cats indoors.  Small dogs can also be at risk, so it’s important to walk your dog on leash and never leave your dog in the yard unattended.

Make sure your trash can lids are secure and avoid leaving bowls of pet food outside as well.  Experts also recommend avoiding bird feeders and ornamental fruit trees to discourage coyote visits to your back yard.

You can find a lot of helpful information on keeping your pets safe from coyotes on the Urban Coyote Initiative website HERE.

 

New Study: Escaped Pet Parrots Living Throughout the US

A study of former pet parrots living and breeding in the wild (called “naturalized” parrots) was recently published in the Journal of Ornithology.

The findings show that our escaped pet birds are living, and in many cases thriving, in nearly all US states, including those with cold climates.

56 species of naturalized parrots have been sighted living in the wild in 43 states between the years 2002-2016.  25 of these parrot species are known to be breeding in at least 23 states.

The most common pet parrot species living in the wild in the US are the Monk Parakeet, the Red-crowned Amazon, and the Nanday Parakeet.

Most naturalized parrots live in three states with relatively warm climates:  California, Florida, and Texas.

A story on this parrot study in National Geographic notes that escaped parrots can live in colder states, thanks to their nightly nesting habits and people putting out bird seed in the winter months.

Parrots live in all types of environments, from urban to rural, with many choosing to nest in man-made structures.

Here in San Diego, researchers report that we have as many as 13 parrot species living in the wild.  Locals can keep up with the latest parrot news and report sightings via the San Diego Parrot Project!

 

Pet Tornado Safety Tips

With the unusually high number of damaging tornadoes hitting the US in the past few weeks, many pet owners may be wondering how to best keep their dogs, cats, and other pets safe from harm during tornadoes and severe thunderstorms.

We’ve gathered some of the best expert advice and compiled the following tornado safety tips for pets.  (Be sure to create a disaster plan for your pets, no matter what types of natural disasters your region of the world may face.)

  • Make sure all your pets are microchipped and have up to date ID tags.
  • Your emergency supply kit for severe weather should also include items for your pets, such as food, water, bedding, and leash.

  • Keep dogs and cats indoors during any severe weather event.  During tornado warnings, bring your pets to safe locations in the house.  It’s best to keep cats crated.
  • In the event your pet escapes, make sure you have a current identifying photograph, and know the locations of all local animal shelters.
  • Small pets like guinea pigs and rabbits should be placed in carriers in a tornado-safe location in the house.

  • Birds can be especially sensitive to stress.  Monitor your bird’s health for several days after a severe weather event.  Always keep your birds caged so they don’t escape.
  • Aquariums should be moved under tables or covered with padding to keep the glass from breaking.
  • If you have advance warning that severe weather is on the way, the best plan is to evacuate with your pets until the threat is over.

 

May is Pet Cancer Awareness Month

Just like humans, our dogs, cats, and other pets can suffer from many different kinds of cancer.  Studies of canine cancer suggest that as many as half of dogs over 10 years old will develop some form of cancer.

In recognition of Pet Cancer Awareness Month, here is a list of common signs and symptoms of cancer in dogs, cats, and other animals–courtesy of the American Veterinary Medical Association:

  • Abdominal swelling
  • Bleeding from the mouth, nose or other body openings
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Difficulty eating
  • Lumps, bumps or discolored skin

  • Non-healing wounds
  • Persistent diarrhea or vomiting
  • Sudden changes in weight
  • Unexplained swelling, heat, pain or lameness
  • Visible mass/tumor

Be sure to talk to your vet if you think your pet may be experiencing one or more of these issues.   Annual veterinary wellness exams are also a good way for your vet to check for any of these signs on a regular basis.

For more information on the diagnosis and treatment of veterinary cancer, including how to find a veterinary oncologist in your area, visit the pet owners section of the Veterinary Cancer Society website.