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The beautiful Ocicat

Posted on: May 4th, 2011 by

A group of Ocicats with cat insurance play with one another.

Although there are now cat breeds that look wild, like the Bengal and Savannah, the Ocicat was the first breed to look like a wild animal. In 1964, the Ocicat was the accidental result of breeding an Abyssinian (which has a solid-looking coat but each hair is actually ticked with three colors like a deer) and a Siamese cat. Although the breed is somewhat rate, many pet insurance companies will still cover it.

The kitten has small dark spots on their body, making them look like a leopard or ocelot. The Ocicat has a distinctive spotting pattern with thumb-print sized spots in a classic “tabby” configuration. They look wild, but are domestic and have a gentle temperament. They have none of the issues that arise from exotic breeds that have wild blood, which is one of the reasons that many pet insurance companies will provide coverage for this kind of cat.

Description
As the breed developed, so did a variety of coat colors. The color descriptions are tawny, chocolate, cinnamon blue, fawn, lavender and silver. Ocicats are medium to large cats with athletic, muscular bodies. Females weigh between 6 and 9 lbs., and males weigh between 9 and 14 lbs.

Temperament
Ocicats are extremely intelligent, sometimes capable of opening their own cages. They are ideal companions with a sweet temperament, and they like to be with their owners, responding more like a dog. They enjoy vigorous play and will become bored if not “entertained” by the owners regularly. It is good to invest in a pet health insurance plan for this breed because of their curiosity.

Pet Health Issues
Fortunately, Ocicats are not prone to any genetic diseases or issues. Since 2005, the breed has been outcrossed with Abyssinians and no pet health problems have arisen yet. But if you are thinking of getting an Ocicat, it’s a good idea to check carefully with a breeder. Even though they are very healthy, you should consider cat insurance for typical cat illness coverage.

The Doberman Pinscher

Posted on: May 3rd, 2011 by

A Doberman Pinscher with dog insurance waits to play fetch.

Doberman Pinschers are majestic dogs with a very distinctive look. Loyal, protective, and friendly, they unfortunately have the reputation of being aggressive. In fact, owners of Dobermans are sometimes required to carry dangerous dog insurance policies. But they are not dangerous dogs by nature.

Description
The Doberman, although lean and tall in appearance, has a compact muscular body with a long head. Their almond-shaped eyes are various shades of brown, depending on coat color. Their ears used to be routinely cropped at about 12 weeks, but because some consider it to be inhumane, and many pet health insurance companies won’t cover these costs, some Doberman owners allow the dogs’ ears to grow naturally, and flop over. Tails are often still docked. Usually within three days of birth.

The Doberman has a broad chest and straight, long legs. Coat colors can range from black, black and tan, bluish-grey, red, fawn, or white. Some dogs have markings over the eye, throat, legs, feet, and tail.

Size
Because they have long legs, Dobermans are often thought to be very large. But males are 26 to 28 inches tall, and females are 24 to 26 inches tall. Both sexes weigh between 66 and 88 lbs.

Temperament
Dobermans are very energetic, loyal, and affectionate. Hardworking and very easy to train after owner pack leadership has been established, every member of the family must be firm and confident when handling the Doberman. This lets them know their place in the pack and provides security. It is also a good idea to consider dog insurance for this breed, considering its energy level and size.

This breed needs lots of stimulation and exercise. Despite the unearned reputation as a dangerous dog, Dobermans make excellent therapy dogs and are gentle with children.

Pet Health Issues
Dobermans are prone to a condition called cervical spondylitis (wobbler syndrome) from fusion of neck vertebrae. Like other larger dogs, they also often get hip dysplasia. Albinism does occur and the gene can cause pet health issues such as deafness.

Allergy sufferers give the Yorkie two paws up

Posted on: May 3rd, 2011 by

Posted by: H.R
For Pets Best Insurance

A Yorkie with pet insurance sits in a crate.

For dog lovers who also happen to suffer from dog allergies, there’s good news. The number three most popular dog in the US also happens to be a favorite among allergy sufferers: The Yorkshire Terrier.

This little bundle of fuzzy fun jumped from the seventh spot on 2009’s popular pooch list to the top three, according to the American Kennel Club. Why? Maybe because these dogs are small—a member of the Toy Group—and their long, fine coats do not shed, perfect for those with pet allergies. Many owners opt to purchase pet insurance for this breed because of their small size and the possibility of accidents and illnesses.

The Yorkie dog weighs in at four to seven pounds and requires little exercise. But they do need daily grooming, could benefit from pet health insurance and regular vet visits, and of course a lot of love!

Although once a favored companion of high society families in Europe, these little furballs are feisty. Yorkies were originally used in the 19th century as a sort of working dog—they would catch rats in clothing mills so the staff could work in peace. So, while they are certainly compact and cute, they are also brave and brisk. The ego of the Yorkie may not match his outward appearance. The AKC describes the breed’s temperament as determined, investigative, and energetic, as they are indeed a terrier dog.

According to the AKC, dogs that belong to the terrier group tend to have a distinctive personality. Often, this may mean a dislike of other animals, including dogs, and an argumentative attitude. Of course, many dog lovers long for a pooch with some spunk. If you’re looking for a big personality in a small, sneeze-free package, the Yorkie may be the dog for you. Once you’ve decided to make this little guy a part of your family, do a pet insurance comparison to determine what level of care and coverage your Yorkie will need.

Dog Dewclaws and Fast-Growing Toenails

Posted on: May 3rd, 2011 by


Hi, I’m Dr. Fiona Caldwell and I’m a practicing veterinarian at Idaho Veterinary Hospital. I’m answering questions from Pets Best Facebook page today.

The first question comes from Hadley who asks, “Why to dogs have dewclaws and is removal necessary?”

Dewclaws probably don’t really have a purpose anymore. It’s probably just left over as an evolutionary trait when there were five fingers. Some dogs are born without them and some dogs have them. There’s not really a problem with leaving them there. The biggest problem that I see is that because of their location they often don’t wear down appropriately and therefore need to be trimmed more frequently.

Occasionally I’ve seen them kind of get snagged on things, especially the really active dogs that are outside a lot. If your dog is an adult and it has a dewclaw I wouldn’t recommend removing them. If you have a litter of puppies who are days old, that’s when removal happens. If you’re planning on breeding dogs and want to prevent the dewclaws from occurring you would want to do this when they’re first born.

The next question comes from Chrissa. She asks, “My dog has eight black toenails and two white ones, and one of the white ones grows insanely fast. It’s always at least half an inch longer than the rest. Any idea why?”

I’m not sure. There’s a possibility that this could be an outside toe that’s not wearing down as quickly as the others. It probably doesn’t have anything to do with the color. Dogs sometimes have a combination of black and white nails. It’s possible that there was an injury at one point and that caused the nail to grow abnormally. It’s not likely to be related to a problem; it just probably means that you have to trim it a little more frequently.
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Pet health care keeps you healthy too

Posted on: May 2nd, 2011 by

A dog with pet insurance plays with his owner.

It may sound odd, but keeping up with good pet health care as well as pet insurance can be good for you too.

Besides the obvious reason that we want our animal companions to be well, taking care of pets has physical and psychological health benefits. The following are some examples:

Pet Ownership Promotes Responsibility
You often hear a good reason to get a pet for a child is that is promotes responsibility—the child learns to feed and care for another living thing. But it can also be good for adults. Looking after a pet and ensuring they have pet insurance, food, water and exercise helps you be a responsible person.

Physical Comfort
Petting your dog or cat after a bad day can have a comforting and relaxing effect on your body and mind. A cat jumping in your lap or a dog putting his wet nose on your hand can help tremendously if you’re feeling overly stressed. Studies have shown that just being around animals reduces blood pressure.

Emotional Wellness
“Unconditional love” is an overused term, but it aptly describes the kind of love that pets give you. They don’t care if you’re feeling snarky or irritable, they still like to be around you. Having pets can reduce isolation and promotes social activity. Walking with your pet or taking your pet to the dog park can up your socialization as well as your dogs’.

Benefits for Older Adults
There’s a reason why companion and therapy animals are often taken into nursing homes. Older people in that environment, who have often had to give up a pet, crave contact with a loving animal. Research even shows that older adults who have a pet have fewer doctor visits.