Saturday 25 May 2024

Dog owners do not know what is in their dogs' food

A study commissioned by Butternut Box conducted by OnePoll, came to the conclusion that millions of dog owners in the UK have no idea what is in their pet's food. There were 2000 participants and 48% of them were able to name just three ingredients. 23% of the participants struggled to understand the ingredients listed on dog food labels.

I'm sure, by the way, that the same would apply to cats. There is certainly, as far as I am concerned, a big disconnect between pet food manufacturers and consumers in respect of labelling ingredients.

44% of participants were confused by what they perceive as contradictory advice about a healthy dog diet.

And because of this lack of understanding of what is in dog food, 36% of the participants admitted that they are worried about their dog's health in the context of their diet.

Four in 10 found planning their dog's diet stressful and certainly more stressful than trying to work out their own diet with 41% admitting that they would want clearer labelling on dog food packaging.

Clearly, a healthy diet can help a dog to be healthy and help to eliminate or at least manage health problems.

The argument is that there is a need for greater transparency and information about dogs' diets in order to help owners to make better more informed choices.

Comment: there is probably a general suspicion about the quality of pet food made by big business. The problem applies to cats and dogs and other pets. There are some ingredients in pet food such as rendered, hydrolysed or pasteurised animal by-products along with artificial colourings, flavourings and preservatives.

It's believed that the manufacturers try to avoid drawing attention to these additives in order to preserve the food and make it look better but which are arguably detrimental to health by making the labelling more opaque and harder to understand.

For 45% of dog owners, price is the deciding factor and 13% were swayed by the packaging. That is the appearance of the packaging encourage them to purchase the product.

27% of dog owners said that their dog was a fussy eater and 17% said that their dog turns up their nose at the food if he or she does not think that it is up to scratch. 11% of dogs refuse to eat their food.

Around 30% of dog owners say that the dog shows more interest in the food that they are eating then the dog food that has been put down for them resulting in 61% of dog owners feeding their beloved pooch human food at least once a week with around 25% of owners admitting that their motivation for doing this is guilt.

That said, 23% provided human food for their dog in the belief that fresh, human quality food is better for a dog than commercially prepared dog food about which they don't know enough.

The conclusion is that there is a need for dog owners to better understand the ingredients in dog food and the same would apply to cat food. And on the other side of the coin, they would appear to be an obligation on pet food manufacturers to be more transparent about dog food ingredients and to minimise additives which might be detrimental to dogs' health.


P.S. please forgive the occasional typo. These articles are written at breakneck speed using Dragon Dictate. I have to prepare them in around 20 mins.

Thursday 23 May 2024

Fraudsters labelling puppy mill dogs as rescue dogs. Beware.

"A federal jury awarded nearly $4 million against two men who brokered puppy-milled dogs in violation of California’s pet store sales ban by falsely claiming they were rescued puppies. The lawsuit has driven the men out of the state and resulted in the closure of pet stores that illegally sold the puppies." - Nathan Winograd.
The same issues could just as well apply to cats.

Some detail: a federal jury in San Diego ruled that David Salinas of Cedar Pet Supply and puppy mill brokers Raised and Alicia Rothman misrepresented where the puppies that there were selling had come from. A press release says that Rothman is the sales manager for Select Puppies in Iowa. This business supplies puppy mill puppies to pet stores across the country.

They lied to customers according to the court ruling saying that the puppies came from Maryland-based PetConnect Rescue in order to avoid California's 2019 law which bans the sale of dogs in pet stores unless they are rescue animals.

PetConnect Rescue learned about the fraudulent use of the name in 2020 after California customers contacted them to complain that their puppies were seriously ill.

Court exhibits showed that the animals were labelled as coming from PetConnect Rescue when in fact they came from puppy mills.

The jury awarded damages to PetConnect Rescue of $3.9 million. The organisation said that this represents a portion of the wrongful profits that were gained by the fraudsters in using their organisation's trademark. Nonetheless they were pleased with the jury's verdict.

The Cedar Pet Supply stores were put out of business in California. Although they still operate at several locations in Nevada and Utah. They have three locations in southern Nevada:
  • Las Vegas - 5191 W. Charleston Boulevard, Suite #170
  • Las Vegas - 5105 S. Fort Apache Road, Suite #115
  • Henderson - 1000 W. Sunset Road
Comment: I hope people read this article and my thanks to and Nathan Winograd for bringing this to my attention. People should know when they buy puppies from a pet shop that they were either rescue animals ideally or at least from a certified and registered dog breeder. The same of course applies to cats.

By registered I mean registered with a dog association and the same applies to cats.


P.S. please forgive the occasional typo. These articles are written at breakneck speed using Dragon Dictate. I have to prepare them in around 20 mins.

Tuesday 21 May 2024

More turbulence than normal for cats in aircraft cabins

Climate change is leading to increased turbulence on flights. A tragic incident occurred on a Singapore Airlines Boeing flight where one person lost their life and over 30 passengers were injured due to severe turbulence. The plane dramatically dropped 6,000 feet and had to make an emergency landing on Tuesday (May 21), as reported by the New York Post.

The gentleman who died of a suspected heart attack was Geoffrey Kitchen, 73. He was a retired insurance worker and a musical director living near Bristol. Six other passengers were in a critical condition last night in hospital.

He was with his wife Linda. He was on a holiday of a lifetime travelling to Singapore, the first leg of their trip to Indonesia and Australia.

A further 47 passengers were taken to hospital. Witnesses said that just seconds after the seatbelt sign was turned on the aircraft plummeted thousands of feet. Passengers were thrown into the air with their belongings. The pilots declared a medical emergency and diverted to Thailand. One passenger said that wherever you looked there was another injury.

Cat in aircraft cabin. Note: the carrier is the wrong type. Should be a soft one. And it is too large! 😻😹 AI created it.

Many airlines do allow cats to travel in the cabin, provided they meet certain requirements. Here are some airlines that warmly welcome cats on board. For example, American Airlines: Allows cats in the cabin, but check their specific policies.

What are the requirements for flying with a cat? 

When flying with your feline friend, here are some general requirements:
  1. Carrier: Use an airline-approved cat carrier that fits under the seat in front of you. Soft-sided carriers are often preferred.
  2. Health Certificate: Obtain a recent health certificate from your veterinarian, confirming your cat’s good health.
  3. Vaccinations: Ensure your cat is up-to-date on vaccinations.
  4. Reservations: Book your cat’s spot in advance, as airlines limit the number of pets per flight.
  5. Age: Most airlines require cats to be at least 8 weeks old.
  6. Weight Limit: Check the weight limit for in-cabin travel (usually around 9 kg, including the carrier).
  7. Documentation: Carry necessary paperwork, including vaccination records and microchip details.

Remember to check specific airline policies, as they may vary. Safe travels for you and your furry companion!

And remember that there is more chance of encountering turbulence when flying nowadays thanks to global warming. The effect on the domestic cat in their carrier under the seat needs to be factored in.

While it’s rare, cats can occasionally escape carriers inside the cabin of an aircraft. To prevent this, follow these tips:

  1. Secure Carrier: Ensure the carrier is securely closed and zipped.
  2. Comfort: Make the carrier comfortable to reduce stress.
  3. Stay Calm: If your cat gets out, stay calm and gently coax them back in.
  4. Alert Crew: Inform the flight attendants immediately if your cat escapes.

Remember, most cats remain calm during flights, but it’s essential to be prepared.

Increased turbulence

Clear air turbulence (CAT) is caused by vertical wind shear, which are sharp variations in wind speed or direction with altitude. This type of turbulence is invisible, lacking any visual indicators such as clouds, and often arises when a large moving air mass encounters another at a different speed, such as when jet streams meet slower-moving air. 

Jet streams are rapid air currents that travel from west to east high above certain regions, like from the US to Europe. The jet stream's strong winds are driven by the temperature disparity between the Earth's polar areas and the equator. Many aircraft take advantage of the jet stream when flying across the Atlantic, allowing them to reach Europe more quickly and with less fuel.

Climate change doesn't cause uniform warming across the globe, and this uneven warming significantly influences CAT. Near the poles, warming is more intense at the surface, while at lower latitudes, it's stronger at higher altitudes. This is because there's more water vapor in the atmosphere over the equator. Water vapor, a greenhouse gas, leads to further warming, enabling the air to retain even more water, thus continuing the warming cycle. Consequently, there's a greater temperature disparity across the jet stream, resulting in faster wind speeds, increased shear at the boundaries, and heightened turbulence.-------------

P.S. please forgive the occasional typo. These articles are written at breakneck speed using Dragon Dictate. I have to prepare them in around 20 mins.

Sunday 19 May 2024

Ozempic tells us humans are becoming lost

In generalising as I must, humans in developed or advanced countries are becoming lost by which I mean behaviourally and emotionally. Humankind is drifting in the wrong direction. They've lost their sense of self discipline. Humans have lost their ability to deal with difficulties, deal with pain and suffering, deal with the kind of things that humans have to deal with in order to be successful and live life to the full. And to be healthy.

Ozempic tells us humans are lost
Ozempic face!! And body! This is a fantasy image of a person who took Ozempic to lose weight.

Ozempic® is cited as a wonder drug which suppresses a person's appetite which means they lose weight. It's a last desperate measure to tackle the obesity crisis among humans. Perhaps we should be giving it to domestic cats as well because they have an obesity crisis as a spin-off from the human crisis.

The huge popularity of Ozempic which will make billions of dollars for the manufacturers, is due to the simple fact that humankind nowadays has the inability to employ self-discipline to eat less. It's pretty much a simple as that.

Camilla Long, the Times journalist is very critical of humankind in her Sunday Times article. She criticises people for being unable to "countenance pain and suffering [which] has left us with Ozempic face and PTSD". Totally agree.

'Ozempic face' must refer to a gaunt face. Sharon Osbourne complained that she looked gaunt after taking Ozempic to lose weight. She regrets it.

It is called a game changing drug. A fantastic drug. Camilla Long is as disgusted as I am humankind. I must quote her.
"I can't think of a single product/medicine/panacea that defines our ephemeral world more - fill your life with disgusting junk food and then just wave a wand to make it go away."

There it is, nicely summarised by Camilla Long. Self-indulgent behaviour par excellence. Eat yourself into the grave but then take Ozempic to try and extend your lifespan. What about self-discipline? What about eating less? What about exercising a little bit? What about going for a walk in a wood or a forest to connect with nature?

There is a strong argument that eating less and exercising is far more effective than relying on Ozempic. And one day we will discover that Ozempic carries some horrible side effects. At the moment it is a wonder drug but every drug is a poison and I suspect that Ozempic is no different. Perhaps in 10 years time there'll be thousands of people with a chronic illness caused by Ozempic. Don't believe that any drug is a wonder drug.

Camilla Long complains that in every aspect of modern life people shy away from dealing with pain and suffering in order to achieve goals and live life successfully. It is a flabby, lost world.

And this discussion carries forward into the woke movement and snowflake teenagers and youngsters. The modern university student is a snowflake it seems to me. University has been dumbed down to make it much easier for students who been ill-prepared for university by their school classes. It's all dumbed down. Which means that young people are ill-prepared for the real world.

In the new world of modern parenting and schooling, nobody can fail. Failure is a word you can't use. This is the snowflake policy. Youngsters need to be toughened up. They need to face reality. They need to countenance pain and suffering in the words of Camilla Long. 

And the drug Ozempic is an example, a symptom, of the failure of humankind to face up to reality, get down and dirty, become self-disciplined, and organise their lives by taking the tough decisions.

Info about Ozempic which is not designed as weight loss drug

Ozempic® (semaglutide) is a prescription medicine used to treat type 2 diabetes. Here are some key points about it:

  1. Blood Sugar Control: Ozempic® helps lower blood sugar levels by mimicking the action of a hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1). It stimulates insulin release from the pancreas and reduces glucose production in the liver.

  2. Once-Weekly Injection: Ozempic® is administered as a once-weekly injection. It’s convenient for patients who prefer less frequent dosing.

  3. Cardiovascular Benefits: Ozempic® has been shown to reduce the risk of major cardiovascular events such as stroke, heart attack, or death in adults with type 2 diabetes and known heart disease.

  4. Weight Loss: While not specifically a weight loss drug, Ozempic® may help patients lose some weight due to its effects on appetite regulation.

  5. Safety Considerations:

    • Do not share your Ozempic® pen with others.
    • Possible side effects include thyroid tumors, so monitor for symptoms like neck swelling or hoarseness.
    • Avoid Ozempic® if you have a history of medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) or Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2).

P.S. please forgive the occasional typo. These articles are written at breakneck speed using Dragon Dictate. I have to prepare them in around 20 mins.

Assessing cat personalities through owner questionnaires

In my view, it's not possible to gather accurate information about the personalities of different cat breeds by surveying their caregivers. This is due to the subjective nature of owners, who, in my honest opinion, may not possess the objectivity necessary to make a personality assessment meaningful. Moreover, personality assessment itself is inherently imprecise, especially when applied to domestic cats.

Assessing cat personalities through owner questionnaires
Scottish Fold owner filling out questionnaire on the personality of their cat. Image: MikeB

There are two imprecise processes at play: an evaluation by an owner who is biased due to their strong attachment to their cat, and the ambiguous task of assessing personalities, which tends to yield unreliable information. This is the case with the Burns Pet Nutrition survey, as reported by the Daily Mail online.

They say that the Burns Pet Nutrition survey has revealed that the Scottish Fold has been named as the top cat by the British. The survey participants said that they were most intelligent cat breed (75%) and the most affectionate (67%). 

Taylor Swift and other celebs have promoted this cat. That too has had an influence on responses to the questionnaire.

Of course, at this stage I've got to mention the fact that the Scottish shouldn't be a cat breed at all because it is inherently unhealthy due to the genetic mutation which it carries causing the cartilage of the cat to be malformed which results in the flat ears and potentially defective cartilage throughout the body. 

Breeders of the Scottish have to be incredibly careful and they can't breed Scottish Fold with Scottish Fold because if they do the result in offspring are unviable.

This is why there are many "Scottish Straights". These are Scottish Fold cats without the folded ears because half the cats that the breeders produce don't have folded ears because of the above-mentioned breeding requirements. I don't think enough people realise this.

And I don't think enough Scottish Fold owners realise that this is a very contentious cat breed which in Germany would be banned because of their torture breeding laws.

Anyway, to return to this survey. "A whopping 92% of cat owners found them [the Scottish Fold] the easiest to train compared to other breeds."

I find this last point extraordinary. How many people train their cats in the first place? Very few. I think what this means is that Scottish Fold owners found that their cat companion picked up routines and habits through informal training which happens in every cat owning home. I think this is a very subjective finding.

The survey also found that over half of British cat owners rated Ragdolls as the most affectionate ahead of Maine Coons at 46%. And in terms of personality more than 50% of Brits said that Ragdolls had the biggest personalities 46% choosing Maine Coons and 41% preferring Bengals.

There were over 2000 participants who also said that the calico cat is easiest to train with 80% of owners reporting that they responded best to instructions. The calico cat is a tortoiseshell-and-white cat and nearly always female. Once again I think this is a subjective assessment which should not be taken seriously.

Apologies for the negativity, but I am aiming for realism. If you consult scientists conducting thorough surveys on feline behaviour using questionnaires, they will agree that the results are often dubious. It seems to depend on how the questionnaire is drafted and if it allows for crosschecking and weeding out inaccurate responses. There might be some merit to that, but generally, questionnaire surveys of cat owners, such as this one, ought to be regarded with skepticism.

P.S. please forgive the occasional typo. These articles are written at breakneck speed using Dragon Dictate. I have to prepare them in around 20 mins.

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