Five Things Your Purring Kitty’s Telling You When They Knead

Happy World Cat Day! This honorary day not only brings awareness to cat adoptions, it also celebrates our kitties at home! We show our cats affection with treats, toys and cuddles, but how do they reciprocate the love? If you’ve seen your cat “making biscuits” that’s a good sign! Here are five things your purring kitty is telling when they knead:

#1. It’s their kitten instinct to nurse

When our cats were kittens and started to nurse, the kneading motion on their mama’s belly was a way to stimulate milk flow. This sweet interaction tells their moms they are receiving the nutrients they need.

#2. It’s getting cozy

Like people, cats have definite preferences for where they are most comfortable. As our kitties age, kneading becomes a way to show they are relaxed. There is a therapeutic, self-soothing element to the motion of kneading, even if it is on your arm, a blanket, or a pillow. Once you see those sweet eyes start to squint, and you hear that soft purr, its clear your kitty is comfortable and maybe ready for a cat-nap! When cats cuddle on your lap, it  offers 3 benefits: it’s elevated, and many cats like to roost up off the floor; laps are warm, cats are attracted to body heat (especially in the colder months); laps are a safe place, cats can cozy up and have a sense of security.

#3. Telling you they love you

Kittens not only knead on their mothers for milk flow, it’s also to show their love for their mom. Their instinct to knead is a sign they feel the same way about you! All of our kitties “love languages” are different but you can be sure if you see your purring fur baby start to knead, they are telling you they love you.

#4. They are happy!

We all know our kitties are in a good mood when they start purring or chirping at us. Just like with our pets, people can tell if someone is happy is through their body language. When our cats snuggle up and start making biscuits—you know they’re happy. It’s that cranky, swift wagging tale you have to worry about.

#5. Marking their territory

Did you know cats have scent glands in the pads of their feet? When they knead their little feet get warm and excrete their scent, essentially marking their territory. This is why you’ll notice your cat sleeping in the same spots. It’s a way for your kitties to make themselves feel at home, safe and secure.

In honor of World Cat Day treat your kitties to extra cuddles and don’t stop until they start purring and kneading! How are you going to celebrate with your cat? Comment below!

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N. California Evacuation Centers

See a list of evacuation centers below:

CHICO

Silver Dollar Fairgrounds, 2357 Fair Street (UPDATE: This center is now full)

A large animal shelter has been set up at Camelot Equestrian Park,1985 Clark Road

St. Johns Episcopal Church, 2341 Floral Avenue (small animals accepted if leashed and crated)

Neighborhood Church at 2801 Notre Dame

PARADISE

Paradise Alliance Church at 6491 Clark Road (Small animals are accepted, RVs allowed in parking lot)

Elks Lodge at 1100 Elks Lane

ORLAND

Glenn County Fairgrounds at 221 E. Yolo Street

COLUSA

Colusa County Fairgrounds at 1303 10th Street

GRASS VALLEY

Nevada County Fairgrounds at 11228 McCourney Road (Enter Gate 1)

PLACER COUNTY

Placer County Fairgrounds, 800 All American City Boulevard in Roseville

SUTTER

Sutter High School, 2665 Acacia Avenue

YOLO COUNTY

Yolo County Fairgrounds Home Arts Building at 1250 East Gum Avenue, Woodland

YUBA COUNTY

Alcouffe Center at 9185 Marysville Rd, Oregon House

Beale Air Force Base at 6000 C Street

Yolo County Fairgrounds at 1250 Gum Ave, Woodland

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Five Signs that Indicate Your Pet is Under Stress

You’re not the only one who occasionally feels “under pressure;” our furry friends can too. Though they can’t tell us with words if they’re feeling distressed, their actions can. Sometimes, signs of stress may be an indication that your pet isn’t feeling well, and may need to go to the vet for further evaluation. As their owners, we need to make sure we are cautious of these five signs that indicate our pet is stressed:

#1. Unusual Aggressive Behavior

If your normally playful pet begins to scratch or growl out of character around people or other animals, this is a clear sign that something is wrong. Be sure to keep your pet’s vaccinations up-to-date, so when you consult your vet about your pet, they can quickly rule out any underlying medical issues.

#2. Decrease in Appetite

Is your pet’s favorite time of day feeding time? We’re familiar with that feeling. If you notice that your pet’s appetite dramatically decreases, or if they are having trouble keeping their food down, this is also a sign of stress and anxiety in our pets. When pets begin rejecting their meals, it’s important to contact your veterinarian immediately.

#3. Fatigue

If you notice that your animal is sleeping often during the day, keep an eye on their activity levels. Try to make time to encourage them to play inside and out to raise their energy. If you notice that their out of the ordinary sluggish behavior persists, they could be stressed or have a cold.

#4. Upset Tummy

This can be difficult to notice if your pet is mainly outdoors; however, if your housetrained pet has trouble getting to the litter box, or if they have trouble getting to the doggie door before they relieve themselves, anxiety could certainly be an indication. If these symptoms last longer than 24 hours, it could be a gastrointestinal issue that needs medical attention.

#5. Where’d you go?

If your clingy pet suddenly becomes MIA for long periods of time, this is also a sign that they are not feeling their best. Be sure to give them quiet time, and try not to pull them out of their hiding place; only remove them from their area if it could become dangerous for your pet to stay there.

Make sure that the environment that your pet is in is relaxed and not hectic. Try to avoid making loud noises, and be sure that your pet has a “safe,” comfortable area that they can escape to if they begin to feel overwhelmed. PetMD also identifies other tips for helping out an anxious pet in this article. Stress in our pets can be caused by a multitude of things. From health issues to environmental changes, if you notice that your pet’s behavior is out of the ordinary, be sure to contact your veterinarian for further consultation. Do you have any tips on how to relieve your stressed pet? Let us know in the comments below!

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Three Reasons to Spay and Neuter Your Pet

We’ve all had that thought: “My insert pet here would make the most adorable babies!” We get that feeling every time we look into those big sweet eyes of our lovable canine and feline friends; however, that feeling also greets us with a big reality check: the importance of spaying or neutering ours pets. Need us to explain? Read on:

Think of the Strays

This is the obvious one. Unfortunately, the surplus in the domestic pet population has resulted in overcrowding. Cats are 45 times more prolific than humans, and dogs are 15 times more prolific. Overcrowding, and an abundance of stray or feral animals leads to unnecessary euthanasia in pets.

Your Pet’s Life Expectancy Increases

Believe it or not, spaying/neutering your pet helps prevent urinary tract infections (UTIs), breast tumors, and testicular cancer, promoting a long and healthy life for your pet.

If your pet is mainly outdoors, take comfort in knowing that this procedure will also reduce your pet’s interest in roaming; therefore, your pet will be less likely to run away, become injured in fights with other animals, or be involved in an auto accident.

Decreases Unruly Behavior

Whether your pet’s heat has them riled up, or they relieve themselves all over the house, neutering or spaying your pet can actually improve their behavior. Typically, your pet’s hormones will cause this territory-marking escapade; so once your pet’s hormones are balanced from the procedure, they will be less inclined to claim the space. This will also make your pet calmer if they tend to be a bit feisty.

Though the financial commitment of spaying/neutering your pet may make you shutter, many vets offer a wellness plan that allows you to make responsible decisions about your pet’s health, without breaking the bank (not to mention, having a litter of puppies or kittens is much more expensive). Once you bring your pet home after their appointment, be sure to take these tips into account to make your pet’s recovery time comfortable and relaxing.

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Tips for Traveling Without Your Pet for the Holidays

The holidays may be the most wonderful time of the year, but they’re also the busiest. With gift giving, parties, decorating, and more, it’s easy to forget your travel plans until the day of departure. If you’re on-the-go this holiday season, and are unable to bring your furry companion along, we’re here to help get things in order. This week’s blog post features four tips on how to keep your pets safe while you’re away:

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#1. Make sure they have a caretaker

Whether you plan to take your animal to a “pet hotel” or kennel, have a house-sitter, or have someone stop by periodically through the time you’re gone—your pet is going to need someone checking in on them. No matter your method, your pet’s caretaker needs to be someone you trust, and preferably, someone who has interacted with your animal before. Not only will this keep your mind at ease while traveling, it will also help your pet develop a trust for them too.

#2. Have plenty of food and water available

Make sure your pet is well-equipped with the daily essentials before you leave, a.k.a., their Precise kibble and drinking water. Be sure to visit your local retailer to stock-up on your dry and/or wet kibble and also leave feeding instructions for the caretaker. Communicate how often they are fed during the day, how much they are fed, and how they prefer their food to be served (for those finicky eaters).

Be sure to keep your pet’s food in an easily accessible area for the caretaker’s convenience. Some pet parents even prefer self-feeders while their away to ensure that their pet is always hydrated and satisfied. Though, big eaters probably could benefit from some portion control per the caretaker.

#3. Leave your caretaker with some digits

Meaning yours, and your veterinarians. You’re going to miss your pet while you’re away, so be sure to check in with their caretaker, or their kennel, often. You can relax knowing that your pet is in good hands.

If something were to happen while you’re away, your caretaker will need to know your pet’s veterinarian contact information. Keep this in a central location, by the pet’s food, so everything will be in one place.

#4. Heavy-duty pet proof before leaving

When your pet’s alone, they’re going to take that as an opportunity to entertain themselves…which can get them into all sorts of trouble. Before you leave, make sure that chemicals, plants, small objects, and other hazardous materials are out of your pet’s reach. Check out these tips from the American Humane Society on how to effectively pet proof your home before departure.

While the Precise team recommends taking your pet along for the ride whenever possible, we understand that some places aren’t so accommodating to our beloved furry friends. We hope these tips put your mind at ease while you’re traveling this holiday season!

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Keeping Your Pets and Holiday Decorations Safe and Tidy

The holiday season is arguably the most exciting time of the year to decorate your home. For pet parents, it’s not always that simple, as pets can be easily tempted with your beautiful decorations. Keeping your holiday tidings just right, and your pet safe from harms way can be a lot of work…to say the least. Here are a few tips to keep your decorations holly and your pets just as jolly:

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#1 Be Cautious of Certain Decorations

Try to avoid tinsel, imitation snow, mistletoe and holly berries when decorating. If an animal ingests any of these decorations, they could experience serious digestive issues. If you must use them, please be sure to keep them out of your pet’s reach.

Your pet may also be intrigued by your heirloom ornaments. Keep these hallmarks high on the tree, and filter in shatter-resistant ornaments wherever possible.

#2 Put Those Lit Candles in a Safe Place

We all love warming holiday-scented candles, but it is important not to leave those flames unattended. Pets could potentially burn themselves, or knock them over and cause a fire. Put the candles on a high, stable surface, like a mantel, to enjoy the holiday scents.

#3 Keep Wires Out of Paw’s Reach

Try to keep all wires from decorations and string lights taped down, or out of your pet’s reach. Not only can they tear the wires, or become tangled in your holiday décor, they could also become electrocuted by decorations that are plugged in.

#4 Be Careful with Your Holiday Plant Placement

While consumption of some plants can be a great source of vitamins and help your pet’s digestion, holiday plants are a different story. Eating poinsettias can cause irritation to the mouth and esophagus, while ingesting holly and mistletoe can cause vomiting and diarrhea, excessive drooling, and abdominal pain.

Make sure your tree is secured, and be sure to vacuum loose pine needles, as they could potentially puncture your pet’s intestines if consumed. Further, avoid using chemical preservatives on the tree; it could contaminate the tree water that your pet may drink.

If you’re feeling a bit weary of these holiday plants, especially if your pet enjoys chowing down on leaves, you may want to go the imitation plant route.

Decorating is one of the best parts of the holiday season, but with pets in the home, this needs to be done safely. Take these tips into consideration when ringing in the holiday cheer this year!

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Four Thanksgiving Leftovers Your Pet Can Enjoy

We know—you’re stuffed. You’ve thought out all of the ways you can repurpose your leftovers, but eating another bite is just asking too much. Over here at Precise, we overdid the holiday indulging as well, but we aren’t wanting our food to go to waste. It’s time to take a breather before the next slew of holiday feasts greets us in December—so why not let your pet help you tackle the scraps. Here are four Thanksgiving leftovers that are safe for your pet to enjoy:

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Sweet Potatoes

Hold the butter, cinnamon, brown sugar and fluff—and a small bit of this delicious root veggie is the perfect addition to your pet’s Precise diet. Baked sweet potatoes can serve as a great source of antioxidants and essential vitamins both working to prevent cancer and the effects of aging.

Green Beans

These tasty snacks are an excellent low-calorie treat for your feline or canine. As long as your beans are free of seasonings like garlic or onion, your pet could benefit from it’s plant fiber and vitamins along with manganese.

Raw Veggies

Pets love crunching on asparagus, broccoli and carrots—as long as they’re free of seasonings. Cut these foods into bite-sized pieces for a great addition of vitamin K, A, C and more to your pet’s diet.

Turkey

The main course, and what they’ve been eyeing ever since you put it in the oven. Dogs and cats both are safe to enjoy this Thanksgiving staple as long as the turkey is well-cooked, making it free of any salmonella bacteria. Also, be sure to take the turkey off of the bone and break it into tiny shreds. Consuming bone could splinter and be problematic for your pet’s digestive track. Remove the skin as well to eliminate the possibility of extra fat consumption.

See? Now you don’t have to bare the burden of devouring the leftovers; just be sure to limit them to one or two new foods at a time and appropriately portion your scraps so your furry friend doesn’t get a rumbly tummy (much like us at the moment).

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Five Ways Your Feline Shows They Care

Our feline friends have been getting a bad rap; some believe that they aren’t as likely to bond with us as our lovable canines. We’re here to debunk the myth. Like humans, cats have incredibly unique personalities—and different ways of displaying affection. Just because they aren’t constantly giving us kisses and snuggles doesn’t mean that they don’t love us. The Precise team has great experience in the feline realm, so, trust us when we say these are five ways your feline is showing they care:

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The tummy flash

Cats are pretty defenseless when they roll over on their backs. Typically dominant animals, these furry friends keep their guard up and aren’t classically known for their vulnerable side. If your feline gives you the belly flash, it’s safe to say that they feel protected by you, and trust you!

Love bites and kneading you

Ouch! Love hurts sometimes, but hopefully not too much. If your feline gives you a light nibble, it’s a playful way of showing their affection. They also love to knead, which may leave a few scrapes on your thigh, but is a sweet reminder of nursing with their mother during kittenhood.

Bringing you “presents”

Though coming home to a dead bird, squirrel, or mole isn’t the most appealing of surprises, your cat is actually trying to give you a gift. Cats are born with a natural instinct to hunt, so to them, this love token is more of an offering. Many think that cats obtain this hunting instinct from their mothers at birth.

Looking into your eyes and blinking slowly

As we said before, cats aren’t known to let their guard down. When they’re willing to make eye contact with you, it’s a sign of true affection. Some even say that when your cat slowly blinks at you, it’s equivalent to a human kiss—be sure to reciprocate the love by slowly blinking back!

Stage five clinger

This one is pretty obvious next to purring. A simple sign of affection in cats is their desire to be around their owner—even if that means getting caught under their feet, or constantly tripping them. Though frustrating at times, let every “whoops!” and close call be a reminder that your feline loves you and appreciates you.

See? Your cats are more affectionate than just a purr or meow. Next time your cat gives you a nibble, or catches your eye, take comfort in knowing that it’s a sign of love. How does your cat show their love to you? Let us know in the comments below!

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Three Reasons Why Your Kitten is Hiding

Introducing a kitten to your home is an exciting time. Immediately, all you want to do is snuggle up with your new playmate. Though you’re eager to bond with them right away, their initial transition may create a lot of internal stress, leading them to hide. If you feel like your new feline is giving you the cold shoulder, don’t take it personally. This happens to many pet parents, so know that you’re in good company. Here are three reasons why your new addition may be hiding:

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#1: The Territory Has Already Been Claimed

Have other pets? This could cause a bit of stress. While your kitten’s foster parent or brief bio may have communicated that they’re pretty social, stepping into an alpha’s home can be a bit territorial at first; this is especially true with stray and feral cats, as well as felines of the same gender. Your kitten may be intimidated by your longtime pet’s dominance, so they’re looking for a stress-free escape until the two can become acquainted. To help your new addition with the transition into the household hierarchy, check out these tips from the Humane Society.

#2: There’s too much to explore

Curious kittens enjoy becoming familiar with their new home. It is incredibly important for them to explore, but too much exploration can be overwhelming. Be sure to facilitate this on a small scale by providing them with a safe room. This space should contain all of your feline’s essentials: their litter box, food, water, and toys. In this room, be sure to continue with your daily routine—not worrying about normal noises that may initially startle your feline, like opening the fridge or flushing a toilet. Be sure to talk with them in an uplifting tone to begin building their trust. It’s important for your cat to become familiar with these noises and your voice, so try not to tip-toe. Once you notice your cat is comfortable in their safe room, begin letting them explore other areas little by little.

#3: They’re simply nervous to be in a new space

Do you remember what it was like to transition to a new home? Whether you moved out of your parent’s house, or remember starting the dorm days of college, it’s a life-changing move that isn’t always easy. Cats each have their own unique personality. You may bring home a furry friend who immediately feels right at home, and enjoys its new lifestyle, or, your cat may be a bit timid, and need some time to adjust. If you find your feline hiding for most of the day when you first bring them home, it’s okay. They’re just adjusting to the new space in their own way. Let them rest, and try not to move them from their spot. Carry on with your normal daily duties, and be sure to stop by their spot and talk to them with an uplifting tone throughout the day. Leave treats outside of their spot, to encourage them to come out. After a little coaxing with the treats, they will eventually explore the space, and be ready to bond. Keep in mind that it may take a week or two for your cat to fully adjust.

Remember, this behavior is completely normal in cats. Be patient and caring with your feline during their transition process. Try not to drag them out of their hiding place, as this could scare them and prolong their transition. Do what you can to make them comfortable, and make them realize that they are in a safe space. Just because your feline needs some alone time, doesn’t mean that they aren’t a fan of their new abode. Give them time, and eventually they will come around—literally!

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Six Halloween Party Safety Tips

It’s no secret – everyone loves a good Halloween party. The excuse to dress up, decorate, and indulge in an abundance of candy while dancing to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” makes any person count down the days until party time. But before you get down to enjoy this haunted holiday, remember that your pet’s safety comes first. Ensure your pets have a happy, spook-free Halloween with these six party tips:

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Designate a ‘Safe Room’

Although Halloween is a fun and exciting time for people, it may seem like a true nightmare for pets. If you know that your animal gets easily overwhelmed and anxious around loud noises or large groups, create a safe room that is solely theirs to escape to. Keep the door closed and provide a cozy bed with a few toys, a bowl of Precise Naturals®, and water to keep them occupied until your party comes to an end.

Stash the Sweets

Halloween candy is tempting for people and pets alike. So be sure to stash the Halloween food and candy somewhere where your furry friends are unable to get their paws into trouble – because after all, ‘tis the season for mischief and mayhem.

Stay Away from Harmful Decorations

When decorating for Halloween, we often don’t take into account our pet’s safety. Before you decide to go all out this year with the spookiest decor you can find, be aware of which decorations pose threats and could result in harmful effects for your furry friend. Although some are obvious (such as candle-lit pumpkins), here are some not-so-obvious potentially dangerous decorations.

Be Careful When Choosing Halloween Costumes

We agree, finding that perfect matching costume with your pet might just be the highlight of your Halloween. Even though they’ll look cuter than ever dressed as superman, make sure that your pets enjoy being in the costume as much as you enjoy seeing them in it. If the costume constrains their movements, breathing, or causes distress, be sure to remove the costume and let them go au natural in their birthday suit.

Keep Pets Away from the Door

Because of the frequent opening and closing of doors during Halloween, along with the frightening factor that unusual costumes have on our furry friends, this night could scare your animals and cause extreme anxiety, which could lead to your animals escape out of the front or back door. Be aware that these factors can cause fear in your pets, and if you are unable to secure a safety room, always keep tags and ID’s on your animals in the case that Fido slips away.

Don’t Leave Your Pets in the Yard

Although Halloween can be fun and festive, remember that it’s also the time of year that pranksters may decide to mess with your pets by letting them go or feeding them harmful snacks. Be sure to bring your animals (especially cats) inside before the sun sets to ensure their safety, or take them out on a leash if necessary. It’s always a good idea to especially adorn your animal with their collar and identification during Halloween.

As pet parents, we want the best for our furry loved ones. Keep these tips in mind as you enjoy this spooky holiday, so that your pets can too have a happy, safe Halloween.

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