Kamis, 11 Juni 2009


Chihuahuas , often called Chis (CHEE-s) are a lively dog breed that adores human companionship. These pint sized pooches are clever and chalk full of attitude. They are very sweet and lovable, and are perfect for apartment living as they require minimal exercise.

The Chihuahua makes the perfect pal for anyone interested in a long-term companion. They do require careful handling due to their fragile size, and are not the best family dog. Chihuahuas are known to be temperamental, and for the most part are not friendly towards children.

The Chihuahua is recognized as one of the oldest dog breeds. Historical facts concerning the Cholula Pyramids and the Chichen Itza ruins indicate that Chihuahuas have existed before the 16 th century. It is said that the ancestors of the Chihuahua were the companions of the ancient Toltecs during the 9 th century and were used for religious reasons. Although it can not be determined when Chihuahuas came into existence, it is believed that they existed before the Mayans.

Despite time and origin doubts, it is clear that the Chihuahua, dog owners have come to love today, originated in Mexico. The ancestors of the Chihuahua were larger than current Chis, and this is thought to be the result of breeding the original breed known as Techichi with the Chinese Crested dog.

Chis were discovered by famous Spanish explorer Christopher Columbus, who brought the breed to Europe’s attention in the 1500’s. However, it is interesting to note that Chihuahuas were not introduced to North America until the 18 th century. They were finally recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1904.

The name Chihuahua was given to the breed because it was found in the Mexican State of Chihuahua.

Chihuahua Basics

Chihuahuas are one of the smallest dog breeds, and are apart of the Toy group.

They stand only 6-9 inches at the shoulders and weigh 2 – 4 pounds. Chis make excellent companions and are extremely devoted to their owner. They show plenty of affection towards their owner and will follow them everywhere.

Chihuahuas are one-person dogs. They are known to establish a close, trusting relationship with one person, and will be suspicious of everyone else. For this reason, they don’t make the best family pet.

Chihuahua ’s do not require a lot of exercise, which makes them ideal for small spaces. However, they should still be taken for walks at least once a day for 10-15 minutes to give them the exercise they need to keep their muscles strong and prevent obesity.

Chihuahuas and Chi puppies do not get along well with children under the age of 10. It will not tolerate any form of teasing and won’t think twice about snapping at children if it feels threatened or is annoyed. As for other family pets, Chihuahuas tend to only get along well with their own kind. However, they can be accepting of other family pets if they are raised with them from puppy hood.

Chihuahua ’s make excellent watch dogs, as they love to bark and are not overly accepting of strangers.

Chihuahua ’s are a relatively clever breed, but are not easy to train. Furthermore, they can be quite temperamental, jealous and territorial if given the chance. For this reason, it is extremely important that Chis are well socialized when puppies and training is pursued. It is possible to raise a friendly Chihuahua if it is well socialized among people as a puppy, but this does take time and needs your constant reinforcement.

Chihuahua ’s shed, and come in two coat varieties: short hair and long hair. The short coat Chis are easy to groom, and can be brushed once a week to keep their coat shiny. Long coat Chis need daily brushing in order to keep their hair free of mats and tangles.

Chihuahua ’s are one of the longest living dog breeds, and can live up to 18 years or more. However, they are also prone to certain health problems such as hypoglycemia and patellar luxation. In addition, you should also know that the skull of a Chihuahua never fully develops, leaving a soft spot on their heads. This spot is known as molera. If a Chi is struck on the soft spot of their skull they could die as this area is unprotected.

If you are a first time dog owner, or are looking for a companion who will never leave your side and is good company, Chihuahuas are the perfect breed for you. Just remember that this breed needs your constant care and attention.

Rabu, 20 Mei 2009

Canary Bird

A canary is a domesticated songbird famous for producing complex and often pleasing trilling songs. Typically, only male canaries sing, although hens have been known to produce songs, and the genetics of a hen play a role in the quality of song produced by her offspring, even if she does not sing herself. Canaries can be found in homes all over the world, and in a few regions, canaries have escaped to form feral colonies.

These birds are in the finch family, and they are a domesticated form of the wild canary, a song bird which was first discovered on the Canary Islands in the 1600s. Sailors started to tame the birds and keep them as pets, and when they were introduced to the mainland, they proved to be a big hit. Initially, canaries were rare and extremely expensive, because breeders only sold males, but once females became more widely available, the birds became much more accessible, although they continued to be especially popular among the nobility, as numerous portraits from the 1600s attest.

Canaries are divided into categories based on their song, type, and color. Song canaries are split into rollers and choppers. Roller canaries sing with their beaks shut, producing a melodious extended trill, while choppers have more abrupt songs, created with their beaks open. Canaries bred for a specific type display various physical traits, while color canaries are bred for unusual color variations. Beyond the classic yellow, canaries can be orange, white, greenish, brown, red, and striped, with unusually colored canaries often commanding a high price.

Canaries proved to be hardy birds after domestication, living up to 15 years in captivity, and they also breed readily, making it easy to maintain stocks of canaries and to breed for especially desirable traits. The modern domesticated canary is markedly different from its wild ancestor, with domestic canaries tending to be larger, and producing much more beautiful songs, as well as coming in a range of colors. Many people enjoy keeping canaries, appreciating their sweet songs and cheerful demeanors.

As a general rule, it is best to keep at least two canaries, if not a group. A lone canary will not always sing, because he has no incentive to do so, since there are no females around. A group of canaries, on the other hand, will be quite vocal, producing a wide assortment of songs and displaying a range of personality types. Many pet stores sell canaries, along with supplies like cages, seed, and toys.

Kamis, 14 Mei 2009

How to Care Bulldog

Bulldogs can easily overheat. Never leave them in a closed area or car
where this could become an issue. If they are overheated, immerse the
dog in a cold bath or with a hose, and call the Vet ASAP.

Because of their skin wrinkles, they can get chafing and heat rash in
the warmer months/areas. Take care to powder their folds, wrinkles,
and under their take if you notice any signs of this.

Sometimes their feet get lesions between the toes, and it?s believed
this is an anatomical issue. They are more common on the forefeet.
They say if you notice swelling or sores, to mix a teaspoon full of
sea salt in warm water and stand the affect foot in the mix for a few
minutes daily. You can also help to prevent this by trimming the hair
from between their toes weekly.

Eczema is a common problem with Bulldogs. It can be caused by stress,
rich diet, insect bites, and hormonal problems. If this occurs, please
take the dog to a Vet. A recommended diet in case of eczema is lamb
meat mixed with boiled rice. Keep brushes, combs, and bedding clean.

Now, let?s talk about Hereditary and Congenital problems a Bulldog may
face. Since I have a listing of over 36 of them, I?ll point you to the
webpage. Most, if not all of these issues need a Vet. Consult, as
there?s nothing you can really do at home to cure/fix them.

The History of the Breed

Bulldogs were bread for Bullbaiting, a sport popular among many in the
Middle Ages. In this sport, the dog was required to perform ?pinning
and holding.? (For example? grabbing a bull by the nose, grabbing a
hold, and not letting go.) They said it made the bull?s flesh
tenderer, and in some places, it was illegal to sell bull meat, which
had not been ?baited? the day before. The sport became more popular in
England in the 13th to the 18th centuries, becoming a national sport.
Dogs during this time became bread esp. for the purpose of this sport,
hence the English Bulldog. They bread a dog with the bulk of his
weight near his head so that when the bull shook there was less change
of his neck being broken. It?s the reason the nose is so upturned as
well, to let the dog breathe easy while it held its grip. This process
continued until 1802, at which point a bill was discussed banning the
practice. However, it was thrown out of the House of Commons. In 1835,
it was finally made illegal by an Act of Parliament.

Sites/Merchandise/and More
http://www.dogweb.nl/shopping/bulldog/ (Merchandise)
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bulldogx-l/ (A Yahoo MSG Board group about Bulldogs)
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Bulldoggers/ (Same idea, different group)
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bulldogfx/ (Ditto ? English Bulldog Specific)
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/BulldogForum/ (Areas of discussion will
include (but are not limited to) ethical breeding practices, public
awareness, health screening, genetic testing, nutrition, traditional
and alternative therapies, and training through positive
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bullyforum/ (Ditto ? English Bulldog Specific)
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/The-Holistic-Bulldogger/ (Holistic Bulldog ideas)
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/englishbulldoglovers2/ (Ditto ? English
Bulldog Specific)
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/thebulldogbunch/ (Ditto ? Bulldogs)
http://www.k9gifts.com/merchandise/bulldog.html (Merchandise)
http://mostlybulldogstuff.com/baubles.html (Merchandise)
http://www.cafepress.com/vivyland (Merchandise)
http://popartpet.com/cafescripts/cafe_search.php?name=english&mode=1 (Merchandise)
http://www.98dogs.com/bulmer.html (Merchandise)

http://www.bulldoginformation.com/bull-baiting.html (Great Website
FULL of information)

English Bulldog

The English Bulldog is a magnificent breed. An English Bulldog Puppy is so cute and cuddly. English Bulldog Puppies love attention. In fact, the English Bulldog Puppy is gentle, friendly and loving. The English Bulldog Puppy gets along well with other animals and is particularly fond of children. He is revered for his loving disposition. The English Bulldog loves companionship making him the perfect family pet.

The appeal of the English Bulldog rest solely on their face. That is what bulldoggers love the most. Most people are drawn to the breed because of its unusual appearance and then by its magnificent character. With a mug that is ferocious, sour and comical all wrapped up in the same package, the bulldog will adore you while still at times tend to follow his own lead rather than yours.

The popular view of the English Bulldog is one of ferocious tenacity, rather it is, in fact, an affectionate, gentle and loyal breed. The English Bulldog is bold and courageous. Thick set and low in stature. The English Bulldog is broad and powerful, conveying an impression of determination, strength and dignity. Just the name "Bulldog" conjures up an image of a real tough dog, especially when you put a picture of the dog with the name. Yet in spite of that face and sturdy body, the Bulldog is a sweetie - a real softie with no hard feelings toward anyone. English Bulldog Breeders have worked hard through the years to eliminate the ferocious side of the Bulldog's temperament while maintaining his looks and determination. Today's Bulldog is fierce looking on the outside and a marshmallow on the inside.

With love and the proper training the English Bulldog Puppy will grow up to a calm adult dog. Bulldogs enjoy leisurely walks through the neighborhood meeting everyone. English Bulldogs will cheerfully adopt anyone and everyone. The English Bulldog meets no stranger. Your Bully is your best companion. Being a friend may be the most important job your English Bulldog has. When you stop and think about the Bully's role, that's not such a bad job description. The English Bulldogs are very content to be your low-maintenance buddy. He will never be a great guard dog because the Bulldog prefers a snooze on the couch. Bullodgs are predisposed for lounging around. After a long day at work, rest assured that your Bully pal will be waiting for you to snuggle alongside. So if you want a companion to hang out with after a hard day's work, then the English Bulldog may just be the type of pet you are looking for.

Rabu, 13 Mei 2009

Ceylon cat

Ceylon cat
Ceylon cat photo copyright www.zivotinjsko carstvo.com See note at base.

I had never heard of the Ceylon cat until recently. This is a rare cat in respect of the world cat fancy but seems to be much better known in Italy, where it is a breed recognized by the FIAF - Italian Federation of Feline Associations.

First things first. Ceylon is now Sri Lanka. Ceylon became Sri Lanka in 1972.

This map shows where Sir Lanka is. Published under a Wikimedia license. author, Vardion - see Wikipedia license.

A cat called the Ceylon cat would imply that this cat was "discovered" by the cat fancy in the west before 1972, some time ago. The 1960s was the decade when the most cat breeds were created in the 20th century (15). However, it seems that Dr. Paolo Pellegatta, an Italian, visited Sri Lanka in 1984 and liked the cat he saw so much he brought the cat back to Italy. The 1980s were also a productive period for the commencement of cat breeds when 12, now widely recognized breeds, were started.

I have no knowledge of the background of the cat brought back except that the cat is described as a "natural breed that has developed spontaneously on the island of Sri Lanka". At first I thought that this meant that the cat is a feral cat, semi-feral cat or a domestic cat on Sri Lanka. On that basis, is possible to say that this was a naturally occurring "cat breed"? I don't think a mixed breed cat (moggie) that is unrecognized by any cat association can be a cat breed. I think it is more sensible, to be honest, to simply say that a mixed breed cat that had certain characteristics was imported from Sri Lanka.

However, I think that I may be simply wrong as one source of information (http://www.agraria.org/gatti/ceylon.htm) says that imported Ceylon cats from Sri Lanka need an a certificate of origin and authenticity from what seems to be a cat association in Italy, Cat Club Amatori of Ceylon or CLUB AMATORI DEL GATTO DI CEYLON. This would seem to say that the imported cats are a cat breed in Sri Lanka.

The Ceylon cat is quite small (medium small) and looks elegant and fine boned; a nice natural looking cat in fact. I am not sure how much of the appearance is due to the breeding program. This cat breed is nicely balanced not extreme in any way, which is pleasing for me to see. It seems that the wise intention is to preserve the traditional appearance of this cat.

This cat is registered with the World Cat Federation (WCF). The WCF Ceylon Cat breed standard says that this cat is small to medium sized. The head is rounded, short and broad with pronounced cheek bones. The ears should be large and set high on the head. The eyes should be large and set wide apart. The coat should be fine close lying and silky in texture. The acceptable ticking colors are black, blue, red, cream, tortioiseshell and blue tortie.

As a matter of interest it is said that the imported cat was kept in an air conditioned room or area that reproduced the same temperature and humidity as Sri Lanka, a very hot and humid country (I presume to ease the introduction to a new environment). It would seem that other cats of a similar type were also imported from Sri Lanka to Italy and a breeding program commenced. The program progressed and a breed standard drafted in 1988.

As to coat type the classic Ceylon cat has a dark ticked coat with banding on the legs and tail and classic "M" tabby pattern on the forehead as shown in the heading photograph. In this conformation the cat is called the "Manilla", I believe. The standard however allows a wide range of colors and patterns as I understand it (including the pointed pattern - i.e. Siamese appearance). The Abyssinian cat is the bearer of the best known ticked coat, which is a special kind of tabby cat coat.

Siberian Cat

The breed originates in Russia (link to a Google map), where he/she is as ordinary and ubiquitous as the "moggie" mixed breed cat. On exporting this breed to the West (in 1990) she has been bred as a pure-bred cat and registered by the CFA in 2000 (very recently in cat history terms). The history of this cat in Russia, though, is very long, going back 1000 years according to the CFA. To me she looks a little like the Maine Coon, medium/long hair (I guess for protection against the Siberian weather) and a "distinguished" and classic cat face.

There is obviously a difference to the Maine Coon, which is hard to describe, but you can see it when you study the photographs on this website. According to Kathy Wade (a breeder based in America, Croshka Siberians) there was an exchange of breeds between the Russians and the Americans arranged by Elizabeth Terrell of Starpoint Cattery (a Himalayan cat breeder).

The Russians got the Himalayan and the Yanks got a Siberian. I can see why there was a formal exchange of breeds. In 1990 the communist party was still (just it seems) in charge in the USSR (as it was then). The break-up of the communist party took place in about 1991. There were heavy restrictions and bureaucracy in those days on anything leaving the country. Also, at this time a certain David Boehm also imported Siberian cats from the USSR to the US.

Siberian Cat
Siberian cat - photo copyright © Helmi Flick

Siberian cat - brief time line
Early-at least 13th century Early recognition of this cat breed. Pets to monks in Russia
post Communist era People started to arrange and attend cat shows
1989 The Soviet Felinological Federation began
1990s This cat breed exported to USA and Europe
2000 Accepted for registration by CFA
Early 2002 This breed exported to UK
2006 Championship status CFA
Current TICA and GCCF recognized

Character + Health

I like the naturalness of this cat and the appearance of the cat indicates that she is well suited to the Russian climate. In short, she looks like a Siberian cat. The Maine Coon has that natural outdoor cat look as well. A cat that has survived without domestication (or minimal domestication) and who has "come in from the cold" to live with humans.

She is agile, a great jumper and is another one of those cats that is "dog like". Bengals can be dog like for example as they like to play "fetch". So, if your wife likes cats and you like dogs, compromise and adopt a Siberian.

Siberian cat
Siberian Cat copyright © Helmi Flick

This cat breed is larger than the average domestic cat (see a weight comparison chart), friendly, good with pets and children, and has no outstanding propensities to ill health found with some breeds (e.g. Modern Siamese).

Siberian cat health
A short discussion on the health issues affecting this cat breed. There aren't many but nearly all domestic cats have some health issues.

She is a balanced and healthy cat by all accounts. And fairly playful and active. This breed of cat is still rare in the West. Dani and Rick of Cattery Yeri Shaes live with a Siberian (amongst other lovely cats) and Dani as you probably know by now is a great cat photographer so you've got some fine pictures of this cat breed accompanying this article (see the thumbnails above).

This really is a handsome cat, I think you'll agree. You will love Dani's photographs. I had a cat called "Missie" who had a bit of Norwegian Forest cat in her and she could jump massive distances vertically. The Norwegian Forest cat is a similar looking breed. Interestingly the Siberian cat is also called the "Siberian Forest Cat".

Siberian cat
Siberian cat - photo ©Helmi Flick


She may be good with people with an allergy to cats. This is claimed by Kathy Wade. Kathy runs a very good and informative website, which is top on a Google search. I don't know her, but I would expect her to run her cattery well too. Visit her site and make some enquiries www.siberiancat.net . It would seem that in tests carried out in the USA fur samples had less Fel D1 flakes (cat dander, the allergen that produces the allergic reaction in some people).

It isn't just Kathy who says that this cat breed is at least to a degree hypoallergenic. There is however no scientific evidence to support the claims of breeders and keepers of this cat who claim this (except for the above as far as I am aware).

Minggu, 10 Mei 2009

Persian Cat

Persian cat with extreme flat face and health probems

Persian cat with extreme flat face and health probems

9th April 2009 - Some 20 minutes ago I was watching prime time news in the UK on Channel 5. I was surprised to see that Persian cat inbreeding is on prime time news as a major news story. I have been mentioning this is for what seems like ages, since the the early days of building this website. I have made numerous posts and written several articles about this particularly in response, recently, to the well publicized story about companion dog inbreeding. The BBC had made a film about inbreeding in purebred dogs which had major, almost catastrophic repercussions in the dog world. It jeopardized the biggest and oldest dog show in the world, Crufts, and the Kennel Club, who run Crufts were forced, ultimately, to rewrite breed standards for a number of dog breeds. This was in response to a loss of sponsorship for Crufts.

It was really only a matter of time before the cat world was dragged into this debate by the media. But as I said, I am surprised it has hit prime time news. Channel 5 used Persian cat inbreeding of the flat face (ultra type breeding) as an example of what is wrong. The point made in the case of the Persian is that the flat face causes breathing difficulties and tear duct overflow (the tears run down the face because the duct is bent and blocked due to the flat face). The cat is breed like this for appearance sake only. The Persian needs to be "round" and cobby. In the USA the breed standard states clearly that the face should be flat (the elements of the face should be in a vertical line it says).

The story about Persian cat inbreeding on prime time news also referred to general ill health brought about by inbreeding and it reported that half of purebred Persians has a genetically inherited kidney disease. This was a reference to Polycystic Kidney Disease. They may have exaggerated the percentage a bit but it is very high indeed (about 40%). Perhaps the percentage is rising.

The point made by this news story is that inbreeding for appearance (to fix and exaggerate "type" - the breed standard appearance) can and frequently does lead to health issues, which is morally wrong. And in any event the average cat keeper wants a healthy cat for numerous reasons, one of which is to minimize vet's bills.

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