Author Archives: Dr. Jack Stephens

Dog Breed Guide: Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier

A Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier with pet insurance from Pets Best.

About the Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier

Height (to base of neck): females 17-18″ males 18-19″

Weight:  females 30-35 lb, males 35-40 lb

Color: Wheaten

Origin: Ireland

Coat: Very soft, silky slightly wavy hair

Life Expectancy: 13-15 years

Energy level: Moderate to high

Exercise needs: Moderate to high

Breed Nicknames: Wheaten

Is a Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier the Right Dog Breed for You?Read More…

Why Dog People Don’t Understand Cat People

A woman who considers herself a dog person, plays with her dog.By Arden Moore, a certified dog and cat behaviorist with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. Arden is an author, radio host, and writer for Pets Best Pet Insurance, a dog insurance and cat insurance agency.

You met the person of your dreams. She has a cat and you have a dog and the four of you are about to share one home. Think of this as a furry Brady Bunch situation. Your dog listens to your every word. Sits and stay on cue, and greets you each time you return home like you’re a rock star. On the other hand, her cat ignores you when you call her name (unless you rattle kibble in her food bowl) and delivers a wide-eyed look of indifference as she proceed to walk across the kitchen counter top despite your protests.

Feeling a bit frustrated, right? You may be thinking to yourself, “If only that darn cat acted more like a dog.” Time for a reality check. Cats are not small dogs. When I give talks around the country about how to achieve harmony in a household with cats and dogs, I gently remind my audiences of the distinct differences between America’s top two most popular pets by sharing these acronyms I’ve created for each:

Dogs puts the “d” in drool, the “o” in obey, the “g” in goofy and the “s” in seconds, please. By comparison, cats put the “c” in candid, the “a” in attitude, the “t” in tenacious and the “s” in…so what.

Dogs and cats have been hard-wired differently. For centuries, cats have been independent hunters while dogs have worked in packs to score food. Early man saw the value of the obey-nature in dogs to help them get out of the Stone Age. Cats waited an extra 10,000 years or so after dogs were domesticated before agreeing to hang out with humans. Their talents for ridding ships, barns and homes of rodents proved to be valuable.Read More…

Why Cat People Don’t Understand Dog People

A woman plays with her cat.

By Arden Moore, a certified dog and cat behaviorist with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. Arden is an author, radio host, and writer for Pets Best Pet Insurance, a cat insurance and dog insurance agency.

There are cat people and there are dog people and then there are folks like me who fall in the middle, enjoying the company of both cats and dogs. I happily share my home – and my heart – with two dogs and two cats. In this age-old pet debate of which species ranks supreme, a communication gap definitely exists between people who declare felines are the finest and those who swear canines are doggone great.

For starters, let’s identify why cats rank number one as a pet choice for some people. Among the feline pluses:

• Your cat will never need you to take them out in the middle of the night or in bad weather simply to perform necessary bathroom duties. That’s the beauty of the invention of litter boxes.

• Your cat won’t greet house guests by leaping on them and showering them with slobbery kisses. Cats have far more dignity than to succumb to this canine welcome.Read More…

Kitten Milestones

A group of kittens plays together. Learn kitten milestones every cat owner should know.By Dr. Tracy McFarland, a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best Pet Insurance, a cat health insurance agency.

It’s really amazing to me how quickly kittens go from helpless newborns who can find their mother’s teat and suckle, but not much else, to fully functional speed racers who can climb, jump, pounce, and use a litter box perfectly in less than 2 months.

Dependent on Mom

When kittens are born, they are completely dependent on their mother for the first few weeks. The mother feeds them, cleans them, and stimulates urination and defecation for her kittens.  Moms start weaning their kittens at 4 weeks of age, usually completing the process by 6 to 8 weeks of age.

Eye Sight

Kittens are born with their eyes sealed shut. Their eyes open at about 7 to 10 days of age, but their vision develops over several weeks, finally reaching full clarity at about 12 weeks of age. If their eyes aren’t open by 10 days, there is any discharge seeping from their eyes, or their eyes become resealed after opening, quickly seek veterinary attention. Infection trapped within sealed lids can permanently damage delicate corneas.

HearingRead More…

 5 Signs Your Dog or Cat Has Allergies

A beagle puppy with Pets Best Pet Insurance itches his ear due to allergies.By Dr. Eva Evans, a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best Pet Insurance.

Spring is here and with it comes allergy season. People aren’t the only species affected by allergies. Many mammals, including your cat or dog, can have allergy-related issues as well. These five signs could mean that your pet is suffering from allergies.

1. Itching

While there are many causes of itching in dogs and cats, allergies to pollen, dust, fleas and even certain food ingredients can cause itching. If you notice a sudden change in your dog or cat that including excessive scratching, hair loss, crusts or scabs, red skin or irritation, have your pet seen by a veterinarian. Itching can be seasonal if it is related to season allergy such as pollen, or it can be year-round if your pet is constantly exposed to an allergen

2. Red, Watery Eyes

pets can experience some of the same symptoms of allergies as humans. Red, watery, itchy eyes are a sign of environmental allergies. These typically worsen in the spring and fall, depending on your geographical location and what allergens your dog is susceptible to. However, in warmer climates, these signs can happen at any time of the year. Pets may begin rubbing their faces on carpeting, bedding or furniture as well as scratching and pawing at their eyes.

3. Paw LickingRead More…

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