Wednesday, March 26, 2014

How to trim your cat's nails, and other gems from the web

Coco gives herself a mani-pedi.
One of the more common duties I am called upon to perform as a companion animal veterinarian is the feline nail clip. A pedicure, you scoff - why bother enlisting a veterinarian for that? Well. Believe it or not cats aren't all impressed when you attempt to trim their nails...they don't always hold still, and until you've trimmed them they have 18 claws (and a few fangs) with which to deter you.

Better the vet incur the wrath of the cat than the owner. 

Truth be told, I actually get a lot of satisfaction from the humble nail clip - the nails are there, then they are gone. There, gone. Problem. Solved. The sound of nails ricocheting around the room is the sound of victory. Shag-pile rugs and woolly jumpers can rest easy for a few weeks.

Much credit goes to the skilled nurses who hold our patients so that the bitey end is directed away from the hands trimming the claws. 

But you can trim your cat's nails at home too. For a detailed guide and a video, visit iCatcare here.

The internet has served up another interesting exhibit, being footage of a Boston terrier riding a robot vacuum cleaner around the house. I am not convinced that the dog voluntarily sat on this machine, but it certainly is one way to make an entrance.

On a much more serious note you may be aware of the increase in "ag-gag" legislation, particularly in the US. But how to these laws - designed to protect producers - impact on transparency and public discourse? How do they impact on animal advocacy?

Award-winning journalist Will Potter will address an audience at Sydney University on Thursay May 1 on this topic. You can register for this talk, part of the 2014 Voiceless Animal Law Lecture Series, by visiting here

Finally, this infographic by McCrindle Research, is designed to show what Australia would look like if it were represented by one street. There would be 100 households comprising 260 people, owning 45 dogs, 27 cats - and 252 fish. Interestingly there is no word on how many guinea pigs, rabbits, birds, reptiles, amphibians or other species that Australians share their lives with.