Domestic cats and dogs may have to be vaccinated in the future against Covid-19 to protect people

This is a quick note but one worth making nonetheless. I think I can predict that in the long term, perhaps in about 18 months to 2 years time, governments in various countries, perhaps predominantly in the West, will be thinking about vaccinating companion animals as a second phase protective measure against Covid-19.  This is because there is a concern amongst some scientists that animals may create a reservoir for mutant variants of the Covid-19 virus. As the virus is zoonotic it can theoretically and actually be transmitted from animals to people and this must apply also to companion animals. Danish mink farmer with white mink due to be euthanised. Photo per credit Perhaps because of the general panicked nature of governmental responses to the coronavirus pandemic, not enough work has been done on this aspect of the spread of the disease. In addition nobody wants to alarm anybody which may lead to companion animal abuse. In fact, in China, at the outset of the pandemic, there were

Honeysuckle Cat Toys


Photo by samatt (Flickr)

Honeysuckle cat toys have similar properties to catnip toys and other play objects. If your cat does not like or is not turned on by catnip you might like to try honeysuckle. You can see them in some pet stores, in the USA at least.

Some people might be tempted to see if their cat likes honeysuckle but there are dangers because some varieties of honeysuckle are toxic to cats. Unless you are absolutely certain then don't go down that route. Ask what type of honeysuckle is used in products or sold and check that the vendor is aware of the hazards. Check the labeling etc.. And note that Japanese honeysuckle vine is toxic to cats.

Also if you produce a chunk of raw wood honeysuckle for your cat to play with it can be dangerous to a cat - think jagged edges and your cat might like to try and chew it. This has a very good chance of causing injury requiring a vet. If buying raw honeysuckle the advice is to place it in a thick cloth material to protect the cat.

An additional concern is that in order to bring out the smell of honeysuckle it is advised to moisten it. This can cause mold to grow on the honeysuckle and some mold is toxic to cats (e.g. bread mold called Aspergillus niger). See what I mean about the hidden dangers! The wood should be "lightly misted" using a water spray bottle.

In general it is said that cats respond less to honeysuckle than to catnip but as cats are individuals it is a nice potential alternative provided precautions are taken.

With the warnings etc. out of the way here are a couple honeysuckle cat toys from Amazon:

You can also buy Honeysuckle Spray for Cats (2 oz.) which can be used on, for example, a cat scratch post to encourage your cat to use it.

Enjoy honeysuckle cat toys but take care.

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