Author Archives: Dr. Jack Stephens

Pet’s First Vet Visit – What to Expect

Dr. Fiona is a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best, a pet health insurance agency. 

Hi, I’m Dr. Fiona Caldwell. And today, we’ll be discussing what to expect with your first visit to the veterinarians.

So with your first trip to the veterinarians, what you can expect is you’ll typically wait in the waiting room until a technician comes up. They’ll get your pet’s weight, and then they’ll bring you in to an exam room. And then from there, the doctor will come in and typically will get your pet’s temperature, their pulse, and their respiration, and they’ll do a physical exam.Read More…

Cat Breed Guide: Maine Coon

A Maine Coon cat with pet insurance from Pets Best.By Dr. Fiona, a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best, a dog insurance and cat insurance agency.

About the Maine Coon

Weight:  19-22lb (Females are smaller and more refined than males)

Points of conformation: This large cat has a muscular build with a long thick tail and large wedge shaped head.  They have large ears with ample hair in pointed tips and lynx tufts.

Coat: Glossy double hair coat is shorter on the head and longer over the body. The texture is soft and waterproof, but also  is shaggy and thick in appearance. Males have a ‘ruff.’

Color: Most colors and patterns accepted, but brown tabby is the most common.  Chocolate, lavender and cinnamon are not accepted.

Grooming needs: Low matting tendency, but  weekly brushing is necessary.

Origin: Maine, United States

Behavior Traits: Adaptable and gentle.

Is a Maine Coon  cat right for You?Read More…

6 Steps to Teach Your Cat to High Five

A cat gives a child a high five.

By Arden Moore, a dog and cat behavior expert and author of 26 best-selling pet books. She hosts the Oh Behave Show on Pet Life Radio and is a writer for Pets Best, a kitten and cat health insurance agency.

When it comes to greeting houseguests, dogs don’t have a monopoly on shaking paws to say hello. If you have a social cat, you can train him to be an official feline greeter to all who enter your home. He can learn to lightly raise one of his front paws and touch it against the extended palm of the guest.

For cats who love interacting with people – like my orange tabby named Casey – this paw-to-palm exchange does the trick. Casey is known as the Pet Safety Cat and he teams up with me and Chipper, my Husky-golden retriever mix, each time we give pet behavior talks to classrooms filled with kids and when we conduct hands-on, veterinarian-approved pet first aid classes.

I started training Casey when I adopted him from the San Diego Humane Society. He was four months old. Today, he is 15 months old and has perfected the art of sitting on cue and raising a front paw to touch when greeting people of all ages during our pet talks.

Let me share with you the six steps to follow to get your friendly feline to meet and greet:

1. Bring out the cat currency. Start with a handful of treats that your cat craves. Sit on the floor with your cat in a quiet room, free of distractions. Hold the treats in one hand.

2. Reinforce the “sit, please” cue. Ask your cat to sit (do this by moving a treat over his head to get him to plop his butt on the ground). As soon as his rump touches the ground, say, “Good, sit!” and immediately reward him with a treat.Read More…

7 Steps to Teach Your Cat to Stroller Ride

Teach your indoor cat to ride in a stroller for safe outdoor exploring.

By Arden Moore, a dog and cat behavior expert and author of 26 best-selling pet books. She hosts the Oh Behave Show on Pet Life Radio and is a writer for Pets Best, a pet insurance agency for dogs and cats.

If you are fortunate to share your home with a confident indoor cat who is pining to investigate the great (but sometimes, scary) outdoors, a safe option is to train your feline friend to ride in a pet stroller you push.

Some senior dogs and canines with mobility issues have been enjoying sidewalk trips while cruising inside comfy strollers, so why not fine felines? You are giving your cat a chance to expand his world beyond inside your home and what he can see from a window perch or cat furniture tree. Being outdoors stimulates his mental muscles and hones his senses of smell, sight and sound. And, I guarantee that after your neighborhood jaunt, your cat will be ready for a cat nap!

In order to make this a win-win for you and your cat, heed these seven safety tips:

1. Size matters. Select a pet stroller that accommodates your cat’s size. He should be able to easily turn around inside it.

2. Tap your cat’s curiosity. Bring the stroller inside your home and allow your cat to investigate it on his own terms for a few days. Make the stroller more appealing by placing treats on the wheels and in the seat for your cat to sniff, find and enjoy.Read More…

Dog Breed Guide: Belgian Malinois

A Belgian Malinois dog with pet insurance from Pets Best.

Dr. Marc is a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best, a dog insurance and cat insurance agency.

About the Belgian Malinois

Height (to base of neck): female 22 – 24″, male 24 – 26″

Weight:  62 – 75 lb

Color: Distinct black markings on ears, muzzle and mask with a tan base.

Origin: Belgium

Coat: Weather resistant coat is short with hard textured hairs and dense short under coat..

Life Expectancy: 12 – 14 years

Energy level: High

Exercise needs: High

Breed Nicknames: Malinois, Belgian Sheepdog

Is a Belgian Malinois the Right Dog Breed for You?
Read More…

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