Animal Radio® is on 134 great AM-FM radio stations and XM Satellite Radio - 350,000 listeners every week! Animal Radio® Sponsors loading... Animal Radio® is on 100+ great AM-FM radio stations and XM Satellite Radio - 350,000 listeners every week! Click to find a station near you
 This Week From The Redbarn Studios

Animal Radio for February 5, 2022  

Hotlips Houlihan Returns
Loretta Swit, SwitHeart

Loretta Swit with DogLoretta Swit (M*A*S*H) is back to tell us about her childhood pet, her faux fur jacket and most importantly, her book of original watercolors she painted. Surprisingly, Loretta's parents didn't foster her artistic side. Hotlips continues to speak out for the animals.

Award-winning actress and activist, Loretta Swit published a book called SwitHeart: The Watercolour Artistry & Animal Activism" with Mies Hora (Ultimate Symbol) in conjunction with the 45th anniversary year of M.A.S.H., and the role that brought her international acclaim as Major Margaret "Hot Lips" Houlihan and for which she won two EMMY's.

According to Loretta, 'SwitHeart' combines all of her loves and passions together. Her watercolors have been either commissioned or on spec and then auctioned off at fundraisers to benefit the animals.

What many fans may not know about the multi-talented Loretta is that she has been an artist from age six, when she won her first art prize. She tells us that she has been painting, doodling and sketching ever since she could remember. She mentions that her parents did not encourage her artistic talents and did not understand her at all. Her mother was constantly telling her to go outside and play like, "The other children," because her mother understood that. However, her mother did not understand this chubby little blonde kid at the dining room table drawing, painting and sketching. Loretta says, "I didn't care about hopscotch, so much as I cared about making a painting!"

Loretta was always an animal lover and tells us of an unhappy story about her first dog. It was where she learned about what she wanted to do with her life. One day her father took her little dog for a walk and the dog never came back. She wants everyone to know that her father was not a cruel man and doesn't want to paint that picture, but he just didn't know better. She says it was a very traumatic experience for her.

Loretta says back in the day, people "got rid" of unwanted animals in many inhumane ways. This has made her passionate about knowledge and a big part of what she does is education. She teaches children about spaying and neutering so that at a certain point those kids will be teaching their parents. She also wants to get the word out about the cruelty of puppy mills.

Sweetheart Book CoverBut it doesn't end there for Loretta. She also feels people need to know about the animals that died to make fur coats. If you have this knowledge before you walk into a department store that sells real fur and you do the math, you think that's not what I want to do and that's not who I am. Then you learn about the positive values of fake fur. For example, they need no storage, they are just as warm if not warmer, and we have come so far with how beautiful faux fur looks.

People can't tell the difference between real and fake furs, and Loretta mentions one coat that she has that is so smashing it looks real. Fortunately people don't mistake Loretta with wearing real fur, because they know enough about her. However, she mentions an incident that just happened at an airport where a woman came over to admire her coat and said it was very gorgeous. In return, Loretta replied, "You do know it's fake?" The woman couldn't believe it and wanted to feel it. To Loretta, that was a WIN. Fortunately fur coats aren't as fashionable as they once were, but people still wear them.

SwitHeart documents her animal portraits along with descriptive anecdotes about each and her extensive philanthropic work, in 65 full color painting and drawings. Loretta even has some of her own animals in the book and tells us that the Jack Russell on the cover is from Bideawee, one of the largest rescues in Manhattan.

Proceeds from SwitHeart go to the SwitHeart Animal alliance Foundation, which will then be donated to charities and programs that are as dedicated, as Ms. Swit is, to ending animal suffering and cruelty. Two of these organizations are Farm Sanctuary, where animals can live out their lives and Search Dog Foundation, who rescue dogs that in turn are trained to rescue us!

Loretta has devoted decades to animal-related causes and is a strong advocate for animals and animal rights and is a true champion of the animal kingdom!

Visit Website

How To Achieve Litter Box Success - Dr. Debbie

Dr. Debbie WhiteIt's important to realize not all cases of inappropriate elimination are a "behavior" problem. In confirmed behavioral driven house soiling cases, 20-percent of the cats also had a contributing medical condition at the time. So even if it sounds like a behavioral problem, see your veterinarian to ensure your cat isn't the 1 in 5 that has discomfort, infection, or other health problems influencing her litter box use.

Drawing Kitty To The "Right" Spot
Check the condition of the box - is it urine stained on the bottom? Throw it out and get a new one. Keep the box clean by scooping twice daily and by performing a complete litter change out twice a week for non-clumping litter or every 2-3 weeks for clumping varieties.

To entice kitty back to the litter box try a litter box attractant like the herbal-based cat litter additive called "Cat Attract."

Multi-cat homes or those with outdoor cats nearby should use pheromone (scent hormone) products to ease social stress and facilitate litter box harmony.

Kitty Eliminates Near, But Not Quite In The Litter Box
Your kitty is telling you that she understands what you want her to do, but something isn't quite right in the litter box environment. First start with providing a larger box, even if this means buying a plastic under bed storage box for this purpose. Look for one sized 18 x 36 inches in size.

Remove any litter box covers. Revisit the traffic flow in the litter box area. Ensure the box is in a quiet, low traffic area. Keep the box unquestionably clean.

Is Your Cat Urinating In Tubs Or Sinks?
Chances are your cat has urinary tract inflammation or infection. The cool surfaces provide relief to the inflammation or discomfort of a medical condition. See your veterinarian for a urine evaluation and treatment since environmental changes alone will not stop the behavior.

To preventing further episodes, decrease access to tubs and sinks, close doors to bathrooms, or fill the bottom of sinks and tubs with a small amount of water.

Kitty Eliminates On Throw Rugs And Won't Use Litter Box
Your cat has already made a litter preference. Perhaps the texture of carpet is more appealing than the litter used. Provide a litter box smorgasbord. This is when you provide multiple litter pans at the same time, each with different litter varieties such as clay, clumping, and natural pine litter. Be sure to include one litter box with sections of throw rugs or carpet remnants lining the bottom. During this time, remove all throw rugs from the house or block kitty's access to those areas.

If kitty demonstrates a litter preference, switch her litter boxes to that style of litter.

If kitty chooses the rug-lined box, then continue providing carpet lined litter boxes to establish a good pattern of repeated box use. Gradually start sprinkling small amounts of cat litter in the box on top of carpet surface. With time, many cats can be retrained to accept the box as the carpet is phased out and just litter remains.

Cat Using LitterBoxPrevent Returning To Scene Of Crime
Clean all house soiling accident sites with an enzyme based pet cleanser. The enzymes break down the chemical component of the odors, and do more than just cover up with scents. Do not use ammonia based cleansers on accident areas - doing so is counterproductive. (Remember that urine contains ammonia products.)

Cats dislike eating in areas that they eliminate, so place food and water bowls in the site of the accidents, or try placing pieces of aluminum foil in areas to deter kitty's use.

Citrus scents are offensive to cats and can be an effective cat deterrent. Use citrus or potpourri scented air fresheners in the area. If your cat is eliminating in house plants, place lemon or orange peels in the pot to make the area less attractive. And of course, make sure you aren't using citrus scented cleaners on the litter pan!

To keep your kitty away from areas she continues to eliminate on, use double sided sticky tape or turn plastic carpet runners upside down. Another option is to invest in motion-activated devices that spritz out citronella or puffs of air when the electronic eye picks up motion in the off-limits area.

The Tough Reality
For some cats, environmental changes aren't enough and drug therapy may be a necessary tool. But remember that behavioral medications aren't a shortcut - drug therapy must be used with veterinary monitoring and in conjunction with environmental changes.

Want to hear some bad news? In households struggling with many years of feline house soiling, it may be necessary to discard urine marked furniture, change out carpet, carpet pads, and treat sub-flooring to effectively remove scent triggers for future elimination issues. It may sound extreme, but it can be important step to achieve faithful feline litter box success.

Featured veterinarian known as "Dr. Debbie" on national pet radio program, Animal Radio. Ebook author of "Yorkshire Terriers: How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend"; "Pugs: How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend"; "Mini Schnauzers: How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend"; and "Shih Tzu: How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend." Dr. Debbie's books.

Visit Website

3 Pet World Trends To Know About
Robert Semrow, Listomania

Robert Semrow, Sugar and ZoeyIt's time to look in to my crystal ball and make some predictions on a few of the important trends that will enchant and enhance the pet world.

To begin with, we will be bombarded with terms that try to convince us that the nutrition choice we are making for our pets are the best, some with substance and some that are just marketing. Terms like all natural, holistic, human grade, balanced and my personal pick for the term to be most overused is Super Foods. What are Super-Foods? If you look it up in a dictionary you may find something like the following: a food that is considered to be very good for your health and that may even help some medical conditions or that a super food is a nutrient-rich food considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being. Who doesn't want that for themselves and their pets? Does anyone want Not-So-Super-Foods or highly average foods? Nutritionists, scientists, researchers and more will also point out that there doesn't seem to be any scientific evidence that something is super compared to very healthy. Still, even I love pointing to Super-Foods as a cut above and extremely healthy. So, I'm on board. Bottom line is that if it increases health and wellness, I'm for it.

Next up is technology. Technology is everywhere in and brought us better toys, better medical devices, better tools and much more. The pet world saw improvements in technology, materials and outcomes from the things we bought for our pets, and it will continue exploding. It is exciting to see some of the medical advances that are bridging from the human world to the pet world and visa versa. Additionally, technology is playing a huge role in the development of new products, product materials, interactive devices, artificial appendages for pets and so much more.

Bionic DogFinally, The Niche Pet World is going to explode. From exotic pet to exotic services to specialized solutions, the niche world is ramping up. We will continue to see niche services like specialized grooming, nutrition, daycare, travel and more all to serve specific types and breeds of pets. And it's no longer looked on as a "cute idea" or frivolous hobby. No, it is smart business to segment and niche out your pet business. People care about their pets and are not afraid to care for, indulge or even spoil them with things and services. You can find behaviorists, travel agents, spa services, concierges and more specialized services than you might believe exists and that will only grow.

It's going to be a great year for the pet world. Most importantly, it's here and what you do with your time and your pet is all that matters. Give your pet the love, attention and maybe a few spoils this year and make it their best year ever.

Share your Pet World Trend suggestions on our Animal Radio Facebook Page.

Visit Website

Animal Radio News - Lori Brooks

Lori and Flo BearJudge Ruled Dogs Are Property
A Canadian judge ruled dogs are property and cannot be considered in the same vein as children in a scathing decision blasting a separated couple for a "ridiculous" attempt to use the court system to settle custody dispute over two of their three dogs. The childless couple, who separated after 16 years of marriage, turned to the court system to settle a feud over where two of their three dogs would live. The husband, who wanted to keep one of the couple's three dogs, made the appeal to the court. Lawyers for the wife described her estranged husband as a "cat person" and pushed the court to consider the matter as they would any other custody issue, urging the judge to allow the dogs, ages 9 and 2, to live with her and grant visitation rights to the husband. But the judge said a dog is a dog and roundly rejected any similarity between children and pets. By law it is property, a domesticated animal that is owned. He pointed to the differences in how society treats dogs and children to explain his reasoning and said we tend not to purchase our children from breeders and we tend not to breed our children with other humans to ensure good bloodlines. The judge likened the matter to being asked to rule on what the couple should do with other joint property they may own. "Am I to make an order that one party have interim possession of (for example) the family butter knives but, due to a deep attachment to both butter and those knives, order that the other party have limited access to those knives for 1.5 hours per week to butter his or her toast?" Ultimately he dismissed the application, telling the pair to settle the dispute themselves and leave the court to deal with more serious matters.

Man Sued After Pet Squirrel Attack
A contractor sued a Virginia couple for $90,000 for injuries he says were caused when their pet squirrel attacked him, resulting in bites and scratches to his leg and hand. According to the paperwork filed by the contractor, the couple was keeping the animal as a pet, but the homeowners say they have never had a pet squirrel and that the attacker squirrel lived outside in their neighborhood, but was never indoors with them. Like most towns, the city does not allow residents to keep wild animals without a permit.

Canned FoodCanned Food Found To Increase BPA in Dogs
Bisphenol A (BPA) is a widely used industrial chemical found in many household items, including resins that are used to line and inhibit corrosion of metal food cans and researchers at the University of Missouri Veterinary School found that even short-term feeding of canned dog food resulted in a significant 3-fold increase in the level of BPA in dogs. They also found increased BPA in dogs directly corresponded with unfavorable gut bacteria and metabolic changes in the dogs they analyzed.

Ducks Like Laser Toys Too
Surely you have seen videos of cats chasing laser dots. However, did you know that a laser toy can also be a good toy for a duck? There is a YouTube video where a duck was having a great time chasing the light from a laser pointer underneath the water in a fountain. The video shows this mesmerized duck wildly going after a green laser pointer light while pecking its beak and diving underwater in hopes of capturing the moving target. You might want to try this is you have pet duck.

Brachycephalic DogsAVMA Hopes To Stop The Breeding of Animals With Certain Traits
The AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association) House of Delegates has considered adopting a policy stating the association's concern over breeding dogs, cats and other companion animals which have inherited traits that can be passed on and negatively impact the animal's health and well-being. Some of those inherited conditions include brachycephalic syndrome, which you see in the "smooshed" faced breeds like pugs and bulldogs and some joint diseases, bone deformities, heart and eye conditions or poor temperament, which is seen in animals with Springer Rage Syndrome. The AVMA's Animal Welfare Committee believed the veterinary profession should advocate against the deliberate or careless breeding of animals carrying genes known to produce suffering, serious disability or premature death in companion animals. As the committee explained, the policy clarifies the expectations of the AVMA and supports veterinarians working with their clients to advocate for responsible breeding practices. The committee adds that, "Traits which significantly compromise welfare will continue to arise in a wide range of companion animals" and it hopes the policy will support productive collaborations between the AVMA and other veterinary, breed and pet industry groups to reduce inherited disorders and discourage faddish extremes of conformation.

EarListen to the entire Podcast of this show (#1157)

About Us | Airstaff | AM-FM-XM Radio Affiliates | Community | Home
Affiliate Lounge | Podcast | Contact Us | Advertising
Book Club Reviews | Pet Product Reviews | Newsletter
Copyright 2001-21 Animal Radio® - Animal Radio Network LLC. - Privacy Policy