Wednesday, October 28, 2009

You CAN Take Your Pet With You!

Have Pets, Will Move
Posted October 22, 2009
Marie Belew Wheatley's Blog - The Humane Exchange
American Humane Association

"In a recent American Humane survey of 93 shelters across the country, 'moving' was the number-one reason given by owners for relinquishing a pet, and 'landlord won’t allow' was the fourth most-common reason...

"Rental properties that allow pets are actually the norm rather than the exception. When I recently checked properties listed in the Denver area on, 98 percent allow cats, 93 percent allow small dogs and 66 percent allow large dogs. Finding a pet-friendly rental property anywhere in the country only takes a few clicks of your mouse on that website or similar ones, like

"In our survey, 68 percent of shelters reported that they offer free counseling to owners who are considering relinquishing their pets. Your local shelter may also be able to assist you with funding for a pet deposit and/or finding a short-term foster home or boarding kennel for your pet..."

Aksum Notes: The second Abyssinian I helped to rescue, took to a vet for tests and vaccinations, fostered, and eventually found a good home for, was dropped off at a pet store with a note saying they had lost their home and couldn't keep him with them. I'm sure it was just as sad for the owners as it was for the Aby. He had obviously been well cared for and loved. I hope this blog helps more people be able to keep their pets with them the entire life of the pet.

Thanks again to Steve Dale's Pet World for pointing me to this blog!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Helmi chose Sky for 2010 Cats USA Magazine

The amazing Helmi Flick did it again! She chose another of my Abyssinians, Alexy Blue Cream Sky of Aksum (a blue torbie owned by me and bred by Bruce Alexy of Alexy Abyssinians) to submit to Cats USA as the example of an Abyssinian for the annual 2010 issue of the Cats USA Magazine (available next year)! And of course with Helmi's talent, they chose her photo of Sky.

For the first time a sex-linked red Abyssinian is the example of an Abyssinian, even before the long process of approving the new sex-linked red colors for Championship status is completed in TICA.

Here are some links to explain the new colors:

I am actively looking for Abyssinian breeders to help with the process of getting the new colors approved for Championship status in TICA.

RW QGC Alexy Braeside Candytuft of Aksum is a chocolate Abyssinian who was chosen to be the example of the Abyssinian breed for the 2010 Kittens USA Magazine.

Here's the post about it.

Thank you again, Helmi!

-Susan Graham
Aksum Abyssinians
Atlanta, GA USA

Thursday, October 15, 2009

2009 Kudzu Cat Show Pictures

Aksum Abyssinian's Picasa Public Albums now include pictures from the first Hickory, NC TICA show presented by Kudzu Cat Club this past weekend, October 10-11, 2009.

Dancer got six finals ribbons, including a Best Kitten!

We took Dancer's pregnant mother RW QGC Alexy Braeside Candytuft of Aksum (Candy) home with us from North Carolina where she was bred to Alexy Begin the Beguine (Cole). We missed Candy and are happy to have her back home with us!

These should be some really beautiful kittens! Candy's kittens are due in late November, and should be ready to go to their new homes in early February. Preference will be given to those who are willing to show the kittens to Grand Champion status. A rebate will be given when the title is achieved.

We only have one cat available now (Aby kittens will be available early next year). Our very last Bengal, CH Bagheera Creme Brulee (Tinkerbell) is available as a retired breeder to anyone interested in a show cat (she is a Champion) with an impeccable pedigree who enjoys attention and was raised with her sister in first the original breeder's bedroom, then my oldest son's bedroom, and never caged. Her father is Fudge Ripple, best Bengal in the world in 2005! She is very affectionate, has a wonderful purr and loves attention from her humans. Now that she is spayed, she could be shown in the Alter class. She is only a year and a half old.

Don't forget the Homeless Abyssinians. If you can't give one a home, consider donating to the shelter or foster caring for them.

Aksum Abyssinians
Atlanta, GA

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Field Trials for Potential Dry FIP Treatment

USDA granted approval to Sass & Sass Inc. to carry out field safety trials of Polyprenyl Immunostimulant (PI) in Arizona making it the third state.

"We would appreciate if anyone can help us with safety study (give PI to cats
orally 2x daily for 15 days and report if any adverse events occurred -- we have
seen none in 500+ cats, 700+ dogs, 1000x mice, and even ourselves)."
Contact Sass & Sass

First Aksum Abys Blog on PI as potential treatment for FIP

I'd really like to see this small startup company get some funding for this!

"We are a small self-funded business consisting of my husband who has a CPA
practice and myself, a National Lab scientist (in biotech for diesel). Every
penny my husband earns goes to support Sass & Sass, Inc. -- rent, maintenance,
development, construction, production etc. We do everything ourselves, from
janitorial and electric work through production, packaging, compliance, legal,
and other necessary functions to get the med to the market. This happens after
hours, on weekends, during vacations etc. We are also putting our son through
college -- he is a senior already. Dr. Legendre has been working with us for 10
years, mostly on his own buck, and all money we were able to raise through
grants went to finance clinical studies directed by him which was still a
partial funding since it was not enough to cover all time and effort that Dr.
Legendre put in. FYI: with Dr. Legendre's help, we found a way to get homes
for all adoptable experimental cats -- his stature softened university position
on the disposal of research animals, and with help of many local cat-lovers, we
found homes to all adoptable cats, including one living with Dr. Legendre and
one with us, now."

Dr. Tanya Kuritz, Sass & Sass, Inc.

Please support SOCKFIP research on FIP of all forms by donating money and your cats' DNA for research. Thank you for caring.

Monday, October 5, 2009

The One Best Thing for Your Pet's Health


Hill's Get a Better Life Challenge HealthWatch

Pet Obesity: A Growing Epidemic

Quick Facts:

* 53% of cats and 43% of dogs are overweight or obese.
* Obesity does not just affect how your pet looks - it affects how your pet lives.
* Overweight pets are at risk for developing diabetes, arthritis and heart disease.

It's never too late to change your pet's future.

* Visit your veterinarian to size up your pet and get a weight loss plan
* Ask how Hill's® Prescription Diet® pet foods can help and take a "before" photo
* Save $8 on Hill's® Prescription Diet®
Weight Management pet food

* Share your weight loss success stories with Hill's
* Include "before" and "after" photos
* Receive automatic entry in the Get a Better Life Challenge

Simon's Cat animated cartoon 'weighs in' on the obesity epidemic.


Aksum Notes: Although I don't think Hill's has the right ingredients in the right proportions in ANY of their cat food (like most cat food today), they do have the right idea here. It's very important to keep your pet healthy, just like it is for us. One of the biggest health challenges for our pets today is obesity. So take the challenge, one way or another, so your pet can have a better life.

Cats are obligate carnivores and should not be fed grains such as corn or wheat. Their meat protein proportion should be at least 40% dry weight. For more information on proper nutrition for your cat, see our advice on Cat Nutrition.

So what's the one best thing you can do for your pet's health? Proper nutrition. Feed the right food in the right amount for your pet. And if you need help, ask your veterinarian.

Winn Feline Foundation Blog about how a higher protein diet can help your cat lose weight in a better way.

Please note: We are not veterinarians. Always follow your veterinarian's advice.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Hospice Cares for Pets Too

Hospice to provide care for pets of the dying

McClatchy Newspapers

"COLUMBUS, Ga. -- Columbus Hospice serves more than 300 patients and for many of them, Terri Roberts says, 'their pet is all the family they have.'

"That's why Roberts, the organization's director of volunteer services, is excited about the new program that the hospice, in Columbus, Ga., will begin in January.

"It's called Pet Peace of Mind and is being financed by a $5,000 grant from Banfield Charitable Trust, a public charity that focuses on pets.

"'We are one of only three hospices in the country chosen. The others are in California and North Carolina,' said Roberts, who wrote the grant requesting the funds.

"The idea for the program came from Delana Taylor McNac, who began a similar program at the Green Country Hospice in Tulsa, Okla., where she is the chaplain. McNac is a former veterinarian..."

(read the entire article)

Aksum Notes: Many of the Abys that I post regularly on the Homeless Abyssinians web page had to be given up by their owners when they went into a nursing home. I think that is so sad. I'm glad somebody is doing something about it.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Pets Only Airline

Pet Airways airline is in five cities now: New York, WashDC/Baltimore, Chicago, Denver, and Los Angeles. The prices usually range from $99 to $349. I wish they would come to Atlanta, GA!

Pet Airways Commercial on YouTube

Pet Airline Comparison to Regular Airlines

Update: Pet Airways is coming to Toronto by the end of this year and to Atlanta by early next year! Yay!!!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

New Simon's Cat Cartoon

Simon's Cat is one of my favorite animated cartoons. There are only six so far (too few!) and all are very funny, especially to "cat people" who see similarities to what their cats do every day.

This particular cartoon was created to celebrate the release of the first ever Simon's Cat book, now in stores.
The video is called 'Hot Spot' and Simon's cat is trying to get more attention and sit under a warm lamp. Enjoy! :-)


How to Win the Flea Battle

So you have a flea problem. There are THREE places to treat when you have fleas, not just your pet.

Fleas are much more than pests. They are vectors for many diseases other than plague in cats and humans. -Dr. Eric Barchas, DVM

1. Your Pet

Frontline, Advantage and Revolution are the top rated monthly flea control products for dogs and cats. You should use the correct type for each. Dog products are way too strong for cats and can be dangerous. Cat products are not strong enough for dogs and may not kill all of the fleas. You can buy these products from your veterinarian or online. Revolution needs a prescription from your vet if you don't purchase it from the vet. Advantage and Frontline may be bought without a prescription several places online.

Here is a comparison chart on the different flea products:

Here are some ways you can spot counterfeit flea products not made in the U.S. by the manufacturer: Frontline counterfeits & counterfeit Advantage

Capstar kills fleas on your pet very quickly (again, use the correct product). Most of the fleas on your pet will be dead within four hours. It is not a long lasting product, however, and is meant to be followed with the longer lasting products listed above.

WARNING: Flea sprays and shampoos and dips can be very dangerous and are not recommended. Spot On treatments from the grocery store that are not the three recommended above can be extremely dangerous for your pet.

2. Your Home

All dogs and cats should be treated for at least three months, because some fleas will take longer to hatch, and just when you think the fleas are gone, they come back. Also, even if you think a cat or dog is free of fleas, even one female flea on them can start another epidemic, laying hundreds of eggs within 24 hours of mating. Flea eggs are laid on the pet and then drop off wherever the pet goes. The smallest and youngest animals are usually targeted more than the bigger ones, and any mammal can be a flea carrier, including a small pet or the raccoon or fox who visits the yard at night.

Unless you want to wait three to eight weeks for all of the fleas to go away, here are some things that will help get rid of them faster. Wash all pet bedding, wash area rugs, vacuum carpets, use flea light traps, and use insecticides meant for in-home use.

For those of us who are sensitive to poisons or simply don't want them in our home, another answer is to use food grade diatomaceous earth (DE). CAUTION: Anything other than food grade is poisonous to humans and animals because it is treated with chemicals to be used in pool filters. Very LIGHTLY dust the edges of the room and areas where your pet likes to go, as well as furniture. You may want to wear a light dust mask while doing this, and definitely make sure it does NOT get in your eyes, as it is very drying and irritating. You can also put it on your pet. It's very safe because the food grade DE can also be used for worming pets and even humans, so if they lick it off it could actually be good for them.

Here are some sources of food grade diatomaceous earth. Planet Natural is another source I found by Googling. You can sometimes find it in your local feed store or if not, they usually can order it. Make sure it is FOOD GRADE and made from FRESHWATER diatomaceous earth.

Wikipedia says: "Natural freshwater diatomaceous earth is used in agriculture for grain storage as an anti-caking agent, as well as insecticide. It is approved by the US Department of Agriculture as a feed supplement. It is also used as a neutral anthelmentic (de-wormer). Some farmers add it to their livestock and poultry feed to improve the health of animals. "Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth" is widely available in agricultural feed supply stores. It is acceptable as organic feed additive for livestock." More on DE here and here and here.

3. Your Yard

If you treat your pets and your home and neglect your yard, you probably won't get rid of all of the fleas, and they will continue to come inside and "bug" you! :-) I learned this the hard way 23 years ago when I had done everything possible indoors but they just kept coming. We even used flea products that misted the entire house from a can in each room. This was dangerous, but when fleas are out of control, you have to do something. Fortunately, that isn't necessary any more.

Apply insecticides to your lawn, especially shady areas. This can be the usual pest control company type of pesticide, the more "green" type such as pyrethrin which still is not very good for you, or again, the diatomaceous earth. If you miss this third and final step of killing the fleas living in your yard, you'll have the same trouble I had getting rid of them 23 years ago until I realized we had to be bringing them inside. All of our cats were indoor cats, so the fleas were jumping on us from the yard and hitching a ride on our clothes or legs. Once we treated the yard and continued the indoor treatments a little longer, the fleas were gone for good.


Now that you've finally gotten rid of the fleas, how do you keep them away? Keep ALL of your pets on a monthly flea control product if any of them go outside on a seasonal or year-round basis. If you have stopped treating them after getting rid of the fleas, and you see even one flea again, put them ALL on the flea control product for at least three months.

DVM Newsmagazine -- How you and your clients can win the flea battle
DVM Newsmagazine -- Study looks at flea susceptibility to imidacloprid
Wolf Creek Ranch -- Diatomaceous Earth - Food Grade - Frequently Asked Questions