When buying pet hedgehogs, there are some important things to look for to make sure you have a healthy animal.
Things to check:
* Its Nose – your hedgehog’s nose should be black and wet, kind of like a dogs. It should not be running and it should not be making “rasping” noises as this may be a sign of a respiratory infection.
* Eyes – should be black and ball like, the eyes should be clear and black, patchy eyes and or cloudy eyes are signs of genetic defects and any hedgehog with these should not be bought. Other signs that the hedgehog is not healthy include, runny, closed, sunken or droopy eyes and any signs of conjunctivitis.
* Ears – Ears should be nice and clean. Your new pet may have little nibbles or chunks out of their ears but this is fine as long as they are healed (sometimes a hoglets they can get a little too close to their siblings and be bitten)
* Weight – They should be “plump” if you look at their belly there should be a little padding and no loose droopy skin, it should also have fine hair and you should see its little chubby pink belly. Which if it will let you touch it will feel soft and a fluffy.
* Legs – Watch your hog have a little walk around, this one is mostly common sense, make sure it is walking as it should, no wobbles or limps or anything like that.
* Responses – A healthy animal will be very inquisitive and interested in anything in its proximity, if you put your hand in front of it, that should be enough to get it around you sniffing and maybe having a little lick. It should also start to “huffle” if it gets stressed, so try picking it up and seeing if it balls up and huffles, this is completely normal for pet hedgehogs.
* Quills – You want to make sure that there are no missing quills or bald patches, often there are broken quills but this is normal as they can be quite rough and tumble, but they are very resilient animals and can handle a broken quill or two.
* Skin – some hedgehogs have little mites at the base of their quills, if they do they will have small scabs at the base, these are easy to see and identify. Never buy a hedgehog with mites.
Testing a pet hedgehogs temperament – there are a few simple things you can do to test that your pet hedgehogs temperament is good and that you get a sociable animal, because nobody wants a moody or shy pet.
* Pick up your hog and it should curl into a ball and “huffle”, turn it onto it’s back and see how long it takes to uncurl, a social hog will do this in about 30 seconds, if it does not ball at all then you have an extremely sociable little pet.
* Stroke your hedgehog – Will it let you stroke its quills or its belly? What about its feet? Most hogs will not let you do this without curling up, however if it does then that’s a fantastic sign.
* Put it on the floor- When you put it down, a sociable hog will uncurl and start sniffing things almost immediately. Some will curl up and huffle and for a bit but if they do this for around 2 minutes or more then that is a sign that your hog may not be the most sociable.
Article Source: http://ezinearticles.com/?Pet-Hedgehogs—Buying-Guide&id=6141708
Skunks are delightful little creatures which have a huge impact on the surroundings they inhabit. In most cases, these white and black creatures will carry out their business without molesting anyone. Often times though, they will have run-ins with pets, people as well as furniture in the living room if they can get inside the house. Whenever you want to get rid of skunk smell from furniture, there are several suggestions that will help guarantee that this job is successful.
Some of the most effective and easy steps to skunk smell removal from your furniture:
You should ensure that the contaminating creature or perhaps the contaminated animals are separated and cleaned or removed from the area before cleaning. It will not make sense to try and get skunk smells from furnishings if the dog or cat still smells of skunk and is present in the room. Tidy up the animal or remove the skunk from the house and then move forward. Carefully examine all furniture which may have been exposed to the skunk, as this will ensure that you are cleaning all the areas.
Gently get rid of wet spots. In case you are dealing with fresh spray or if the wet cat or dog only rolled on the furnishings and spread the smell, then you need to blot the wet spots. You should not scrub as this will work the smell further into the fabric.
One option is to use an extracting machine. Visit a grocery or hardware store to rent one of the extraction machines used for cleaning the fabric home furnishings. This can help draw the odor from the furniture instead of pressing it deeper into the fabric. In case you cannot get an extractor machine, think about getting a bag filled clean rags or any other cleaning cloths which can be thrown in the trash after you finish cleaning.
Choose the solution. Regardless of whether you are using an extraction device with an upholstery wand or even doing a blot or hand clean-up job, you need to get the right neutralizing agents for the odor. Some individuals opt for using vinegar and baking soda, while others use professional cleaning solutions or mild sodas.
Clean, remove or blot and soak. This part of the procedure will take a number of applications and a bit of time to deliver the results. With the right neutralizer and persistence, this should be worth it in the end. There are also some all natural odor removal products on the market like Odorzout that will completely remove the smell without much effort.
Basically, getting rid of skunk smell with house hold items is a job that you can accomplish with the right tools and some elbow grease. This means that you can salvage your chair, couch or even the whole
Article Source: http://www.articlealley.com/easy-steps-to-skunk-smell-removal-2303356.html
Pigs are a great source of meat, but they are also great pets. Finding out what pig characteristics are will help you to take care of these intelligent animals. Although traits may vary according to breed, several genetic characteristics are present among pigs.
Pigs are one of the most social and intelligent farm animals. The reason why pig farmers create strong pens and fences is that pigs can escape from even a relatively good fence. They are acknowledged to work in pairs and in certain occasions, smarter swine even open other pens to let other pigs run away. They can also learn new behaviors as proven by experiments and research. They can move a screen cursor and remember drawings and scribbles they already knew. Scientists believe they are smarter than primates and even three-year old children.
If you intend to raise pigs for meat, you need to know one of the distinct pig characteristics is their cleanliness. Contrary to other people’s belief, pigs are generally clean animals. This is shown by their choice of toilet far away from their food and water troughs and their shelter. They will also not rest or lay near the manure. They apply mud to hinder their sensitive skin from the sun and insect bites.
Pigs, like other animals, have sweat glands only on their snouts. That is why they love to be near the water or mud especially in hot weather.
Pigs are near-sighted. They use their sense of smell and hearing to guide them where to go. They also use their snouts to look for food. They are like dogs which sniff things they want to find.
Pigs basically can live for 10-15 years if well cared for. They will keep on growing until they are four to five years old. However, some breeds, like the potbelly pig, do not share these general pig characteristics. They commonly weigh only 60 to 300 pounds, depending on what type of food they are fed. Micro-mini pigs or teacup pigs weigh 29 to 65 pounds, and are specially bred to be small.
Pigs are independent animals. Unlike dogs, they do not care for much attention. They are more like plants that only need to be fed, watered, and taken out of the sun. Of course, spending time with your pig will make it more connected to you, but not like dogs, they will not seek loving fellowship.
Pigs can jump. They do jump, only slightly low and only if they are trying to reach for something or are startled. They will also jump if you guide them to.
Pigs are highly trainable animals. Because they have good sense of smell, you can train them to retrieve or hunt something for you. Just make sure you have treats of food as a source of motivation.
With these pig characteristics, maybe you are getting really excited about getting a pig as a pet. However, also remember that pigs require a lot of space since they can grow really big. They also tend to be destructive when they are exploring. Certain people think that pigs are too bright to be kept as pets. Whatever people and scientists claim, the conclusion is always up to you.
Read more at http://www.articlealley.com/pig-characteristics-and-traits–reading-their-behavior-will-help-you-to-take-care-of-pigs-2303888.html?ktrack=kcplink
Article Source: http://www.articlealley.com/pig-characteristics-and-traits–reading-their-behavior-will-help-you-to-take-care-of-pigs-2303888.html
The difference between friends and pets is that friends we allow into our company, pets we allow into our solitude.
~ Robert Brault
…and if that pet happens to be a pair of fuzzy, frolicking cavies, solitude becomes nothing more than an incomprehensible word in some foreign vocabulary. Man! The ruckus they create when let out to run amok all over the place! I don’t know about you but among all rodents that are commonly kept as pets, I feel guinea pigs are the noisiest and the most vocally inclined. I mean, just look at the variety of noises they make on different occasions – the wheeks of excitement when you offer them any nibble-worthy delight, the purrs of enjoyment when you relent to a petting session (you being the petter, of course!) on returning home after a long day at work, the squeals and chirps of displeasure or discomfort when it’s hungry or scared! Isn’t it super fun to have these cute, hyperactive and extremely social rodents around you? However, like with all pets, guinea pigs need to be kept clean and groomed on a regular basis to keep them healthy, odor free and prevent infestation of their fur by mites and lice. If you’ve just got yourself a pair of cavies (well, it’s always better to get guinea pigs in pairs as they become depressed and dull when kept in solitude) and have no idea, whatsoever, about how to bathe a guinea pig, help’s here! Just keep reading and pay attention to what the next segment has to say.
How to Bathe Guinea Pigs
One of the best things about guinea pigs is that they are quite favorably disposed towards cleanliness and you will see evidence of this in the amount of time they invest in self and social grooming. However, being the conscientious pet owner that you are, you must make sure you get them out for a cleaning and grooming session every once in a while and clean their cage on a regular basis to prevent your precious fuzzies from contacting infections and infectious diseases such as diarrhea and respiratory tract infection. Bathing your guinea pigs once every 3-4 month suffices as washing their coat too frequently can lead to excessive skin dryness. The following points lay down a step-by-step procedure of how to bathe a guinea pig without hurting or scaring it.
* Before we even start with the details of how to bathe your pet cavies, let’s see what all we will need in order to get the task done. The things you’ll need would necessarily include a small tub (plastic, porcelain, metal…take your pick as long as it’s roomy enough to accommodate one punching, kicking, leaping fur ball at a time!), a pair of towels, a hair dryer, lukewarm water and pet shampoo.
* Spread one towel at the base of the tub so that your guinea pig doesn’t slip and hurt itself even if it panics in water. Thereafter, fill the tub with cozy, lukewarm water. Make sure it is neither hot nor cold as the former will cause burns to your pet’s coat while the latter will cause it to fall sick.
* It is best to keep the water filled tub on the floor so that your guinea pig doesn’t hurt itself even if it slips out of your gentle grasp as it cannot fall when the bathing tub is kept at floor level.
* Get one guinea pig out of the cage and spend some time petting and talking to it in soothing tones as you carry it to the bathing area. This will help relax both of you before you two embark upon experiencing the guinea-pig-bathing phenomenon for the first time. Allow your cavy to sniff the edges of the tub while you gently, but firmly, hold it in your hands as this will help it get familiar with the tub and the bathing water before it is lowered into it.
* Now, while still lightly petting and speaking to it in soft tones, lower the guinea pig in the water very slowly, getting its hind limbs wet first and then gradually lowering it till its midsection is under water. All this while, keep talking to it and be gentle with your hands. Remember, this may not be as smooth as it sounds and you might have to run after your cavy quite a bit before you can get even its feet wet. So, have lots of patience and time on your hands when planning to bathe your guinea pigs.
* Once you’ve managed to lower your guinea pig in the water (keep the head above water surface and drip water and shampoo over its head to clean that area), gently run your fingers along its coat to get rid of dust and loose fur. Pour a little shampoo (a few drops would suffice) on the guinea pig’s back and gently lather with your fingers while holding your pet with one hand all this time.
* Run your shampoo covered fingers along all the hidden nooks and recesses of your pet rodent’s body such as the belly, folds of limbs, under the tail, etc. Don’t take too much time doing this as long exposure to such moisture can lead your cavy to catch a nasty cold.
* Wash away the shampoo thoroughly with warm water, making sure no residue remains anywhere on the coat as the chemical deposits can lead to skin problems later. Wrap up your little, wet ball of fur in the dry towel and gently wipe away the water droplets
* Turn on the hair dryer and set the temperature at the lowest heat setting. Keep the dryer nozzle at least two feet away and point towards your guinea pig. Direct the blast of air at different areas of your pet’s anatomy to dry out the coat thoroughly.<
* Take your spic and span guinea pig back to its cage (assuming you cleaned the cage before cleaning your pets!), take the other one out and repeat the entire routine mentioned above with it.
So, that’s how you give your pet cavies a bath every 3-4 months! Remember, guinea pigs are physically extremely delicate compared to us humans, and any hurry or impatience on your part can cause them bodily injury by way of your hands crushing or your nails scratching them. Throughout the entire routine, make sure that you handle your tiny pets very gently, keep talking to them in a calm and relaxing tone and, last but definitely not the least, have oodles of patience. That being said, you’ll soon discover that these bathing sessions are as fun as they are messy! Happy splashing!
Article Source: http://www.articlealley.com/pig-characteristics-and-traits–reading-their behavior-will-help-you-to-take-care-of-pigs-2303888.html
Koalas are interesting animals with several amazing features. Native to certain parts of Australia, koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) are marsupials (females have a pouch on their belly, inside which they raise the newborn), which lead their life on trees. They belong to the genus Phascolarctos in the family Phascolarctidae. In fact, koalas are the only surviving species of this family. The name of this genus is derived from the Greek word ‘phaskolos’ that means pouch and the Latin word, ‘arktos’, meaning bear. It is said that the name of the species – ‘cinereus’ means ash colored in Latin (this denotes the coat color of the animal). Koalas are sometimes referred to as koala bear, due to their resemblance to a bear in their looks. Koalas are adapted to their environment in various ways. Here is a some info on koala bear adaptations.
Adaptations of Koala Bears
So, koalas are marsupials that belong to certain parts of Australia. Though, they have some features that resemble bears, koalas are not even related to the latter. These Australian mammals are related to wombats and kangaroos. Whether it is structural or dietary, koalas have numerous adaptations. The following are some facts about koala bear structural adaptations.
Arboreal Life Adaptations
* As koalas lead an arboreal life, these animals have padded feet and long claws for better grip, while moving on tree trunks. Both the front and hind limbs are strong enough to support them while climbing trees and moving in between branches.
* Unlike most of the other mammals, koalas have strong thigh muscles that are among those vital adaptations that help them to lead an arboreal life. Their thigh muscles are found to join the shin at a lower point, as compared to other mammals.
* The paws of a koala have five digits each with sharp claws. In case of front paws, two digits act like thumbs and are opposed to the other three digits. This enables the animal to have a better grip while moving on trees.
* The second and third digits of the hind paws are fused together and the claw on this fused digit is used for grooming. The first digit of hind paws lack claws and are opposed to the other three digits (including the fused one). Koalas lack tail that is one of the main adaptations seen in animals that lead an arboreal life.
* The thick fur is one of the koala bear adaptations that make their arboreal life comfortable. As compared to other parts, the fur on their tail end or rump is much thicker. This provides a cushioning effect for the animal, while sitting on trees.
* The curved spine is also one among the physiological adaptations of koalas. Along with the cartilaginous pad on the rear end, the curved spine of these animals enables them to rest on tree forks comfortably.
* The thick fur of koalas saves them from extreme temperature variations. Apart from that, the fur has moisture repelling properties that help these animals during rain. The scent gland on the chest of male koalas are used for marking their territory (trees).
Koalas are among those few mammals that are adapted to a diet of eucalyptus leaves, that can be poisonous for many other animals. They are not even found to drink water as the moisture content in the eucalyptus leaves is almost sufficient to meet their water requirement. Let us take a look at some koala bear adaptations that enable them to thrive on this diet.
* Koalas have sharp front incisors that are used for clipping the leaves. The molars are used to cut and chew the leaves to a paste form, before swallowing. The gap in between their teeth enable the tongue to be moved in such a way that the leaves are rotated inside the mouth for efficient chewing.
* It is said that these animals have a keen sense of smell and use their nose to determine the edible type of eucalyptus leaves. Even the toxicity of these leaves are believed to be determined by them, through smell.
* While their liver is entrusted with the function of inactivating the toxic components in eucalyptus leaves, the cecum is said to absorb the maximum amount of nutrients from the leaves consumed by koalas.
* As koalas have a diet that provide them with low energy, these animals are adapted to spend less energy. As compared to the size of their body and head, they have a very small brain with mostly hollow interiors. It is said that the small size of the brain helps the animal in spending less energy.
* These animals have a very low metabolic rate as well as low body temperature. They are found to sleep for at least 18 hours a day. For the remaining time, these animals rest on tree trunks and chew on eucalyptus leaves. All these factors help them in spending less energy.
The above said was only a brief compilation of some interesting facts about koala bear adaptations. It is not legal for a layman to keep a koala as pet. However, some people (like research scientists and wildlife carers) are sometimes allowed to raise koalas. Hope you found this Buzzle article interesting. If you want to know more about koalas, you may conduct a deep study about them.
Article Source: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/koala-bear-adaptations.html