727-403-8103         joy@fairydustservices.com

Home and pet services to enhance your life


Boo, it's October!

In other parts of the country they are watching the leaves turn color but for us being in Florida we are just hoping for cooler weather. Happy Fall and Happy Halloween!!

Nature or Nurture?

Often a client with a fearful or aggressive dog will say, "what did I do wrong?" The answer is usually - nothing. Sometimes no matter how much we've done for our pooch, no matter how much love and training he has received, he will still be fearful. It's not how you raised him; it's the nature of the beast! You didn't fail, and neither did your dog.

Some people insist on getting an 8-week old puppy because they are a "clean slate." However, genetics play a larger role than some people care to admit when it comes to personality. Over the past few years, more and more research has been done to try and answer that age-old question: nature or nurture?

If dogs were blank slates, then only well-loved and cared for pups would be sweet dogs. Rescues would be doomed because many of them didn't have a good start. Yet, most of us have met rescue dogs that are sweet and loving pups. So clearly, the clean slate argument isn't quite right either.

Many dogs come with built-in personality traits. Herding breeds like to herd - and most of them will. Get a retriever, and 9 chances out of 10 he'll want to retrieve. It's why we don't see Chihuahuas herding sheep or Siberian Huskies as police dogs. They were bred to do other things, and the genetic traits Fido has will form some of his personality.

Before you get a puppy or adopt a rescue, think carefully about your lifestyle and what you're looking for in your new buddy. Do your research! If you lead a sedentary life, getting an Airedale Terrier probably isn't the right choice.

The truth is we still have a lot more to learn about nature vs. nurture. It looks like they both have merit. As a dog parent, it's up to us to teach our best friend the dos and don'ts of living with people. Training should be fun and lifelong to reinforce the etiquette we want our buddy to have when interacting with others.

But even a well-loved dog doesn't always love kids, and a well-trained dog with a high prey drive may not always listen to you when he sees a squirrel. Both training and genetics are what form our pup.

Choose the right breed for your family, then spend time socializing and training Fido. If you are looking at a rescue, many shelters have a general idea of how their residents behave on a leash, around other animals, and with children. So, talk to them about the dog you're interested in, and if possible, spend time with the dog before you adopt. Once you bring your new best friend home, slowly start with socialization and training.

Use your head and your heart, and we know you'll end up with a BFF (best friend forever).

Cool Facts about Orange Tabby Cats

Think of Milo, Morris, or Garfield - all orange tabbies! Some folks call them marmalade cats, red tabbies, or gingers. Many people have a soft spot for these beauties - but why is that? We've gathered oodles of facts about these gorgeous kitties, which will help you see why they are so loved.

First, an orange tabby (like all tabbies) isn't a breed; it's just a color designation found in various breeds. If a cat is orange - it is a tabby; they all are! But some breeds are more likely to produce a ginger; for example, an American Bobtail, Scottish Fold, Devon Rex, and an Exotic Shorthair.

There are 4 coat patterns for tabby cats: mackerel, ticked, spotted, and classic. All ginger cats have an "M" marking on their foreheads; look for it! Some orange cats have black freckles around their nose and lips. These freckles are called lentigo; they are harmless and adorable. The orange coloring can range from a deep pumpkin color to a sun-bleached peach. But again, they are all tabby cats, and all will have a striped pattern.

The same pigment, pheomelanin, that creates an orange cat is responsible for red-haired humans as well!

Marmalade cats only come in 3 eye colors: gold, green, or copper.

Most (80%) orange tabby cats are male.

Many orange cats seem to have warm-hearted personalities; they are considered outgoing, vocal, and friendly felines. They tend to be relaxed cats that like to snuggle with their person. Their character isn't always as fiery as their coloring, but many ginger pet parents say their cats enjoy creating a bit of trouble (but don't all cats?).

Orange tabby cats have a good appetite and can end up with weight problems - if you have an orange kitty watch her diet to keep her lean.

Winston Churchill was so fond of his marmalade cat Jock, that in his will he donated his historic home as a museum but only on the condition that Jock could live there for the rest of his life!

Hollywood loves orange cats and uses them frequently on TV and in movies. Orangy, was the cat in Audrey Hepburn's Breakfast at Tiffany's and acted in many other films. He won 2 Patsy Awards which is the animal equivalent of an Oscar!

Stubbs, another orange cat - was the mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska for 20 years. Interestingly, the town had NO human mayor.

Let's celebrate our pumpkin color cats this month! We all know how unique and loving they are!

Can my Pet Eat Fruit?

Any time is an excellent time for us to indulge in fresh fruit. It's cooling, delicious, and packed with nutrients. Many pet parents like to share their food with their pets as a special treat. So which fruits are safe and healthy for your dog and cat?

Most dogs and some cats like apples. They contain fiber, vitamin C, and calcium. Please don't feed them the apple seeds.

Watermelon is low in calories and high in water but just like apples, remove the seeds. It is fine to give watermelon to both cats and dogs.

A lot of pets like bananas, and they are a great choice for both cats and dogs! Bananas contain potassium; however, they do have a lot of sugar - so go lightly.

Another favorite of canines and felines is cantaloupe, which is filled with water, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Remove the rind before giving it to them.

Blueberries are often an ingredient in dog food; they are very beneficial for both Fido and Fluffy. They contain fiber, antioxidants, and have anti-inflammatory properties too. Other berries that are safe include blackberry, strawberry, raspberry, and cranberry.

Lastly, canned pumpkin, which is readily available right now, is a great treat for both your dog and cat. It has a lot of fiber, acts as a pre-biotic, and is packed with vitamins and minerals. Also, pumpkin can be calming to a pet that has an upset stomach.

With any new food, go slowly. Too much of anything can upset your friend's tummy. Wash your fruit carefully to remove bacteria and pesticides. When serving fruit, cut it up in small pieces so it isn't a choking hazard. Don't forget that some fruit is high in calories; it should be a special treat for your buddy. Also, make sure you are serving plain fruit. For example, with canned pumpkin, be sure nothing has been added like spices or sugar. Finally, give sparingly. Treats should only make up 10% or less of your pet's diet.

So enjoy a fruit treat with your pet! Feel free to mix it with yogurt and freeze it to make this treat even more special.

Great Pet Links!

October is:

Pit Bull Awareness Month
Adopt a Shelter Dog Month
Pet Wellness Month

October 4 - World Animal Day
October 9 - Pet Obesity Awareness Day
October 16 Feral Cat Day
October 31 Halloween

Pet Safety Tips for Halloween
Halloween Games For Your Dog
Celebrate Fall With Your Pets
Pictures of Halloween Pet Costumes
Halloween Treats for Dogs and Cats

October 2021 Newsletter