Thursday, January 31, 2013

National Pet Dental and Heart Month

February highlights two very important health issues for both humans and their pets. We humans know that we need to take care of our teeth and hearts for various reasons but we don’t often think that we need to do the same for our beloved pets. There is research that shows there is a direct link between dental care and heart issues.

Dental care has been pushed in the last few years and now we can’t go a day without seeing an ad on television for products that help keep the tarter off our dog/cat’s teeth but they are not the only pets that need good dental care.

Heart health is just now starting to get some publicity but not though the traditional media. We are learning more about it from those we follow on twitter, Google +, Facebook, and many blogs and in some instances conferences, such as Blog Paws.

Again, the most focus is on dogs and cats but ferrets are also among those that get heart disease and what is surprising is that there seems to be a link between the lack of a specific supplement and heart disease that both cats and ferrets need. This link has been established in dogs as well but they produce the supplement naturally.

For the month of February, I will be writing about these things.

Without googling what supplement do you think cats and ferrets need?

What dental problems can pets have?

Do you brush your pet’s teeth?

Or do you have yearly dental cleanings performed at the vet’s office?

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Blog Award

    I was nominated for this award

   

by Honey I Shrunk the Pig

 

Here are the rules for the award:

1. Provide a link and thank the blogger who nominated you for this award.

2. Answer the 10 questions.

3. Nominate 10-12 blogs that you find a joy to read.

4. Provide links to these nominated blogs and kindly let the recipients know that they have been nominated. I should add if you email the link you should also tell the recipients what the link is about as not to have it deleted.

5. Include the award logo within your blog post


So Thanks Kevin and here are our answers to the following questions:

Here are the 10 questions.

1.  Facebook or Twitter? Both

2.  Your favorite pattern? If you are asking sewing then it is the Warm up Jacket I’ve created for fur challenged ferrets

3.  Do you prefer getting or giving presents?  Both

4.  Your favorite number? 13

5.  Your favorite day of the week? FSS

6.  Your favorite flower? lilac

7.  What is your passion?   Ferrets

8.  What is your favorite color?  Black very soothing

9.  Your favorite animal? Growing up Horses now Ferrets

10.  Your favorite non-alcoholic drinks? Coffee

Nominations:

The Pet Blog Lady

Bunny’s blog

Boris Kitty

Cokie the Cat

I love Rescue Animals

 Pepper’s Paws

Pet Blogs United

Just Meowin’

My tail hurts from wagging so much

Kol’s Notes

Sunday, January 20, 2013

I Have a Dream

 

Today is Martin Luther King Jr. day in the United States he is famous for his 1963 Washington D.C. speech “I have a Dream” given in front of the Lincoln Memorial.

Like Martin Luther King Jr. I also have a dream.

Mine is that California removes its unrealistic ban on ferrets and legalizes their residency.

My dream is that others come to understand ferrets and that all the myths and misconceptions are wiped out.

It is also my dream that all the homeless ferrets find their special forever home and never have to want again

Until then my dream is that all the caring people who foster, shelter, and rescue these wonderful little guys are well funded by those that can help make a difference in the day-to-day operations.

Just one bag of food can help reduce the amount needed.

Just one $10 donation to a vet care fund can pay for a month of medication for those in need of adrenal and insulinoma meds.

Just one case of paper towels, Simple Green, or other cleaning supplies help reduce the outgoing costs that can be spent on the ferrets.

What is your dream?

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Friday, January 18, 2013

Marshall Ferret Fun-N-Games Blanket Review


 

Manny, Marcuz, and Marylin were given this blanket for Christmas and like with all ferrets the best part was the bag it came in. After they grew tired of seeing if they all could fit into the sturdy bag with snaps, they turned their attention to the large rectangle on the floor.

At first the two Os confused them as they didn’t come off of the mat to be taken away like the three Xs and the one O that make a rattling sound. That was until I showed them that the O’s were openings that lead inside the blanket giving them a place to play as well as stash some of their smaller toys. They also like to take naps in it.

 

FashonableFerrets 008 FashonableFerrets 003 FashonableFerrets 004 FashonableFerrets 006 FashonableFerrets 007

The shapes will fold enough that they can be placed inside the blanket giving the ferrets a new game of trying to get the shapes out so they can be hidden elsewhere.

FashonableFerrets 011 FashonableFerrets 010

The yellow O was fun to play Jump through the hoop, as it is large enough for my fur kids to slide through it.

The other game we play is Cover the ferrets and lift the blanket so they can jump up at it. This is a fun game to play with the Manny, Marcuz, and Marylin with different types of blankets.

This worked pretty well but the sewn in Os made it a bit heavier than I’d like so I grab the corners with the Os before starting this game.

Overall, I really like this toy and the fur kids give it Three and half paws because the whole blanket isn’t quite hidey hole material but the three Xs and O are.

Disclaimer: I was given this product to review and no other compensation but the opinion is 100% Manny, Marcuz, and Marylin’s and mine

                         

Have A Chittering Good Day,

Jo

                        

Sunday, January 13, 2013

National Dress Your Pet Up Day

Many pet owners like to dress up their pets for different reason. For some pets it helps them to stay warm such as Sphynx and Cornish Rex cats and many of the smaller dogs such as Chihuahuas and Yorkies. For other pet owners it is a way to express their creativity or celebrate the holidays.  

 

Ferret owners are no different but it isn’t always to find ferret clothing that is both fashionable and functional. So I have designed my own.

 283401_2262300558748_5150246_n bluehawaii ladybugwarmup

So do you dress your pet up?

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Flu Bugs and Ferrets

Having the flu sucks and this year’s flu is showing no mercy to those that get it. I know because I came down with the evil virus last week and it is still making me feel very yucky. It is also keeping me from being with my ferrets.

The CDC website reported that the current flu has increased in the last week. Meaning more humans are getting sick with this year’s strain of flu unfortunately, this doesn’t take into account the number of pets getting the flu.

Yes, I did say pets get the flu. Surprised? There is a flu vaccine for Dogs 

but not for other pets.

The flu can be very bad for the very young, the elderly, or those with compromised immune systems. Meaning it can prove to be fatal. This is true for our pets.

Did you know that you can give the flu to your pet and they can give it to you?

Because I don’t want to give this flu to Manny, Marcuz, and Marylin I am taking precautions to limit the chances of them catching the flu.

These include but not limited to:

Using hand sanitizer before and after touching them

Limiting my time in the room with them

Wearing a mask to prevent the spread of germs by sneezing or coughing

Not letting them give me kisses

While I hope, I caught it before I infected them the fact is the flu virus can show up five to seven days after exposure there is a chance they may already be infected.

This means that I will be watching for symptoms.

These include:

Watery eyes

Sneezing

Coughing

Loss of appetite

Sleeping more than normal (Sleep is a big part of a ferret’s life)

Low energy

Yep same symptoms you see in humans that have the flu and the treatment is the same. Rest and fluids and for the most part both humans and ferrets get over the flu in seven to ten days.

The concern comes when a ferret doesn’t eat or drink anything in a forty-eight hour period as they can rapidly become dehydrated.

I have a supply of duck soup . (Duck soup does not contain duck but was named for a ferret named Lucky Duck)   in the freezer for those times I need to have a liquid diet for my ferrets. I make up a small batch every other month and pour the liquid into ice trays. Once frozen I cut the cubes into fourths.

Duck soup should be in all ferret owners’ supplies. There are several powdered brands out there as many recipes for making it from scratch.

When one of the furkids gets sick I defrost one of the small cubes, which is usually all a sick ferret wants to eat at a time until they are feeling better. If a ferret isn’t interested in food and has stopped drinking for a period of time or has immune issues it is time to make an appointment with the vet.

With their small systems the flu can rapidly turn into pneumonia causing other complications. This means while I am sick I am unable to play with my kids and will have to make it up to them when I finally kick this nasty bug’s butt out of my system I would rather they be healthy and happy than to have to be nursing them back to health.

Stay Healthy and Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Real Pet blog challenge: Repeat Offenders

 

Thanks to a comment left on my Monday post I was directed to the right link for the Pet Blog Challenge and was able to get the correct questions to answer.

While this is only my second year doing the challenge I have found that doing both posts I’ve percolated my goals down into something very obtainable. So onward to the post

1. How long have you been blogging and provide a link to your post from last year’s Pet Blogger Challenge so we can refresh our memories.

I’ve been blogging since 2009 and here is last years post.

2. What do you consider the most important goals you set out in last year’s post?

Acquiring more followers and doing interviews with people about ferrets

3. Have you made progress toward those goals, or have your goals changed over the past year?

Yes, I have made some progress with getting more followers but not the full hundred I wanted. As for the interviews, I got them but it wasn’t me doing the interviewing it was the other way around. A completely new adventure for me.

4. How often do you post?

I try for three times a week but it seems that towards the end of the year I slow down to only a few posts a month.

5. Has your opinion of blogging on a schedule or as the spirit moves you changed? I think that my opinion is basically the same but how I go about it is changing as I learn more about myself and where I want to take Enlightened Ferret.

If you publish on a schedule why? I find that having a schedule lessens the amount of stress I am under but it also makes me feel boxed in at the same time.

How strict are you about your publishing deadlines? I allow for a little give way but find that if I miss a deadline I feel like I’ve let myself down.

What do you do for inspiration when it feels like you’ve covered every topic? I ask people what they would like to know on some of the social media sites and sometimes I revisit past posts and rewrite them.

If you don’t publish on a schedule, why?

How do you think your decision affects your audience? I am not sure how it affects my readers.

How do you know when a topic is “post-worthy?” Most of the time “post-worthy” topics are the ones I feel new ferret owners need to know or strikes a chord within me.

6. How much time do you spend writing your blog per week? Depends on the topic and how much research I need to do on the topic. Can range anywhere from twenty minutes to three days or more.

How much time visiting other blogs? This is where I feel like I need to improve as I don’t spend a lot of time reading other blogs.

Share your tips for staying on top of it all. Having an editorial calendar with a keyword listed for the day helps along with keeping a list of what “special” day/month might be happening and making a list of topics that are related to that event and ferrets.

7. How do you measure the success of a post and of your blog in general (comments, shares, traffic)? I have Google ad sense and it shows me the number of page views as I don’t often get many comments. The other thing is when I met people and they tell me about a blog post they’ve read and it just happens to be my blog.

Do you look strictly at the numbers, or do you have a way of assessing the quality of those interactions? I think I for the most part still in the mindset that I am blogging just to get the information out there and to educate people. Therefore, the numbers while nice don’t have a huge impact on me.

8. If you could ask the pet blogging community for help with one issue you’re having with your blog, what would it be? Getting more feedback.

9. What goals do you have for your blog in 2013?

To have 400 followers by the end of the year.

To open communication with companies that mostly with dogs and cats and show them another animal that might benefit from the products/services they offer.

To earn an income that would take care of my ferrets comfortably.

To move Enlightened Ferret from blogger to my own hosted site.

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Pet Blog Challenge 2013

Last year was the first year we participated in this challenge hosted by Go Pet Friendly and Will My Dog Hate Me  and participating in this challenge this year will  help us focus on where Enlightened Ferret is headed this year.

I couldn’t find if they were doing the challenge this year so I’ve used the questions from last year’s challenge and updated my answers for this year. Here is the link to last year’s post. Pet Blog Challenge 2012

1. When did you begin your blog?

June of 2009

2. What was your original purpose for starting a blog?

To help others understand ferrets and help new or prospective owners understand what having a ferret entailed.

3. Is your current purpose the same? Yes, it is still the main focus along with other aspects of being a ferret owner in a populace of mostly dog and cat owners.

If so, how do you feel you’ve met your goals?

Until last year, I hadn’t really set any goals for Enlightened Ferret. But thanks to doing, this challenge last year I feel that I have met most of my goals for Enlightened Ferret and it has opened the door for other opportunities to help promote Enlightened Ferret.

4. Do you blog on a schedule or as the spirit moves you?

Blogging on a set schedule is hard and sometimes life does get in the way of doing so. But having a few guest posts helps relieve the stress of blogging every time.

If the former, how often — and what techniques do you use to stick to it?

I am trying to use an editorial calendar more so that I have specific posts written for Mondays and Fridays to help eliminate the stress of worrying what to write about. Wednesdays are still reserved for Wordless posts. Last year I tried to have Featured ferrets on Tuesdays and Thursdays but found those to be over whelming and depressing as many of those same ferrets are still looking for forever homes.

5. Are you generating income from your blog?

I have earned some revenue from Enlightened Ferret this last year but not a steady income.

If not currently, do you hope to in the future — and how?

I still have mixed emotions on this. While I do want to have an income from Enlightened Ferret that will allow me to do the things I want to. I don’t want to have ads that are unrelated to Enlightened Ferret’s mission.

6. What do you like most about blogging in general and your blog in particular (bragging is good!)?

I enjoy doing the research for each post I do and hearing from people that have found Enlightened Ferret either by accident or followed a link back from twitter, Facebook, or Linked In.

7. What do you like least?

Self promotion. I am normally very shy and it is really hard to come out of my shell and let other see the passion I have for ferrets.

8. How do you see your blog changing/growing in 2013?

I would love to see Enlightened Ferret gain 400 new followers by the end of 2013 and drawing the attention of companies that cater more to the dog and cat owners and showing them another avenue they might look at for revenue. I also plan on replying to more of the comments than I have been.

I also hope to move Enlightened Ferret from Blogger to its own webpage in 2013.

Hope you will all participate in this challenge this year and see how you do in the coming year.

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Guest Post: A Ferret's Five Welfare Needs

 

Ferrets are inquisitive animals that require considerable attention and care. If they are regularly handled by humans from a young age, they can form strong bonds with their owners and become as good a companion as a cat or a dog. Ferrets display a range of playful behaviours and this renders them a fun pet to have around the house. If well cared for, they can live as long as ten years. However, their average lifespan is around six years.

When ferrets are not adequately cared for, they suffer from boredom. This can result in a variety of physical and psychological problems.


Understanding the Needs of Ferrets
Ferrets are domesticated mammals. Wild European and Steppe polecats are likely to be their ancient ancestors. However, since no wild counterpart is believed to exist, scientists are still finding out about ferrets' habitats, behaviours and needs.


Owning a Ferret
Looking after a ferret is highly satisfying and can bring with it many treasured memories. However, ferret ownership can also prove a challenge. The long-term commitment associated with ferret ownership is not to be underestimated and this is particularly true of the financial cost. Anyone who owns or is responsible for a ferret, even temporarily, is required by law to adequately care for the animal by ensuring that its five welfare needs are met. These responsibilities are detailed under the Animal Welfare Act, which was introduced in England and Wales in 2007.


A Ferret's Five Welfare Needs
No two ferrets are the same and for this reason, there is no ideal way in which to look after this animal. While one ferret owner’s circumstances may differ greatly to those of another, an owner must ensure that their ferret’s five essential needs are met. The way in which these needs are met may vary. However, all ferret owners must take reasonable action to ensure that they provide their animals with
• a suitable place in which to live;
• a nutritious diet and uninhibited access to clean water;
• the chance to behave as they normally would;
• the chance to seek out appropriate company;
• protection against, and treatment for, pain, injury, suffering and disease.


Disclaimer: This is a compensated post and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of Enlightened Ferret. It is also from the stand point of those that own ferrets in the United Kingdom and the post does have UK spelling.

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo


Updated 7/16/14: Removal of dead links