Dec 21, 2010

DIY Pet Traveling

With a small animal, a cat carrier can be too big or too open for comfort. Most small animals take rides while wrapped in a towel or in a box.

I created a small travel box for our hedgehog for her comfort, and I'll share the idea with you.

For this project, you'll need:
  • A small cardboard box.
  • Durable, tightly woven fabric.
  • A ruler.
  • Scissors/knife.
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks.
  • Velcro.
This is my box.

Amiira has already ridden in this box, from the breeders in Spokane to home in Kennewick.
Optional--Cut the top flaps off, so there's only the sides and the bottom.
Measure the bottom of the box.

Cut two pieces of fabric that are a couple of inches bigger than the bottom of the box in both directions. (longer in both length and width)

Sew these together, wrong sides out, and leave a gap in one side.
Turn in right side out, and stuff it like a pillow. Use a ladder stitch to close the remaining gap. I don't recommend topstitching, as this will provide loops of thread that may snag little toes and feet.

Now line the bottom of the box with fabric. I simply hotglued the fabric down, but make sure to fold the edges of the fabric so it's underneath.

Now, attach the SOFT part of the velcro onto the bottom of the pillow. Make sure the velcro is on the very edges of the pillow.

Only do the two long sides of the pillow. Attach velcro to the fabric in the bottom of the box so both sides of the velcro line up.
You're done with the basics! You can place a hand warmer that you "break" and it heats up in between the pillow and the lining fabric to keep your animal warm. The pillow is also removable and washable. You can decorate the outside of the box, or line the inside of the box to your and your pets comfort.

If you have a nocturnal animal, I suggest provided a shirt or a smallish piece of fabric for them to hide and snuggle up underneath with.

Mine isn't very pretty, but hedgehogs are from the mole family and I'm sure she doesn't care much for pretty patterns, although they do like to play with brightly colored things.

Have fun! and please post pictures of finished projects!

Dec 18, 2010

Christmas? or Holidays?

Did you know that some people are petitioning to make the Christmas tree into the "Holiday Tree"?

I know that this is to be less discriminating, but I think we should allow each to their own. If you don't celebrate Christmas, go on and celebrate whatever holiday you wish, or don't celebrate at all. I'm not stopping you, and I have no intention too. I myself was a Jehovah's Witness for the first 9 years of my life, and as a result, I don't care much for Christmas. I still participate, but my stepmothers family takes it a little too far for me.

They like to make everyone open their presents one at a time, and that is a common practice, but they also videotape it. I prefer to open my presents while everyone else is opening their presents, and have my own little bubble of appreciation and gratitude instead of being forced to awkwardly smile because everyone is STARING. I'm a shy person, and I also have panic anxiety disorder. This putting-me-on-the-spot really makes me act up, turning into a mute in the corner of the room, constantly shifting to avoid contact with the people on my left and right, and gingerly taking presents handed to me, turning my face down so they can't look me in the eye.

But of course, people do not like this behavior, so I am yelled at to look up and be happy, and grateful.

These past years I have avoided going to my stepmothers parents for Christmas by counterbalancing it with thanksgiving. However, this year I am going for Christmas, because (1) my boyfriend and I needed to spend time with our hedgehog we picked up the day before, and (2) my mother whom I have not spoken to or seen in several years will be in Seattle for Christmas. I feel it might be the time to finally say hi, if even for a day or two.

I feel that my joy of Christmas is all but taken away by other peoples customs and wants, and I disapprove of turning Christmas into a general Holiday. I am no longer of any religion, but I still feel this way.

What do you guys think?

Another example of changing Christmas is making Santa into a skinnier, more healthy looking influence. The goal is to make it slightly more unacceptable to be obese and jolly, but I'm not sure many people noticed, and if they did, they probably made jokes about the economy and how Santa must have had a bad year.

Dec 15, 2010

The Holidays

How has everyone's Holiday joys, miracles, and stressors been going so far?

To be honest, mine has been very frustrating. I've been trying to order custom-made stickers and magnets for my family from Zazzle, which is a really cool site when it doesn't cancel your orders several times in a row. (They're very good at returning your money as soon as you cancel, however.) I think the site itself has been having some problems lately, as a friend of mine tried buying from it recently and it won't accept his credit card.

However, I will be getting my Diamond Glaze in the mail today. This means I will be able to replace some of the gifts-not-gotten with some REAL homemade gifts, instead of custom made and ordered gifts. I'm still very upset about Zazzle, though... The gifts on there was much more personalized.

I planned on finishing a sweatshirt for my boyfriend, Nick, for xmas, but the fabric is so hard to sew through by hand. I wanted to also make Amiira a small hedgehog sized blanket, but I want to finish the sweatshirt before any other sewing projects. For Wynter, I want grab a jar and fill it full of all kinds of kitty treats; tarter control tuna treats, toy balls, fluffy/feathery toys. Then decorate it. I'm sure she won't appreciate the decorations, but it'll make it more for her.

The project I'm going to do with Diamond Glaze is to make scrabble tile pendents, a project found at I would link to it, but I can't find it because they recently reorganized all the crafts and the search bar isn't working, so I can't find the particular how-to.

Why is it that all the sites want to do something new right before the holidays, mess up, and then don't fix it? Oh, because they then went to their parents, leaving many people in chaos ans stress. Grrr. Sorry, but this has upset me very much, and many people aren't getting their presents this year because of it.

Has anything gone wrong (or unbelievably perfect) for you this years holidays?

Dec 12, 2010

Pets Personality

Do you know enough about your pets personality to detect a problem early on?

A pets behavior can tell you a lot about how they are feeling. If your dog comes up to you with a toy often and tries to play with you, she has a lot of energy that she needs to use; in other words, she's bored. If your rat stops eating and loses weight, his teeth may be too long and need to be trimmed.

However, there are plenty of behavior changes that should alarm you. If your pet who prefers not to be touched or engaged with suddenly begins to cuddle you, this may be a sign that she's sick. You should not be happy that it's suddenly warming up to you; be worried. If any animal begins to sleep a lot more than usual, that is a sign that must be taken seriously and should be taken to a vet for a checkup.

Physical changes should also be noted. If you pet your dog and feel bumps on it where there weren't any bumps before, it may be cancer. Cancer can take a pet's life very quickly after you notice anything wrong; even within a week.

Does your dog like snow, or rain? If he doesn't, and one day goes outside in the snow and begins to energetically dig within it, you should be worried and call for help.

Little personality quirks should be noticed and watched for, in case there's a sudden change. It could save your animals life when you see that it's acting abnormally based on it's own self.

What are some things that your animal does that is special?

My cat likes to be around people, even when she doesn't want attention. When there are people in the kitchen, she lays on the counter. If there's people in the living room, she finds a cushion to get comfortable on. However, she does like to find a quiet place to nap, usually in the front window or the window sill in my brothers room. If my brothers are out, she'll sleep on my parents bed, which is her favorite place to sleep.

Dec 10, 2010

Pet Owners

What kind of a pet owner are you?

Be honest now, are you a GREAT owner? Or an average owner?

What I want to know even more is: How many owners know how to be a great owner? Do you know that if you own a cat or a dog, you need to brush their teeth? That if you own a rodent, you should provide something hard for them to chew on, otherwise their teeth will get too long, and then they can't eat?

Some animals seem to be easy to care for, but many owners don't even realize the most basic care needs they have. How do you think your gums and teeth would feel if they were never brushed throughout your entire life? Older pets such as cats and dogs have a lot of pain in their mouth because they have acute gingivitis. Their teeth end up falling out. And for some reason, people attribute this to old age!

Most owners will give their pets 3 things:
  • Food & water: This is obvious. If you don't give them this, you won't have them for very long.
  • Love & attention: Animals need this as much as they need food and water. If they don't receive love and attention, they grow depressed, or they may annoy you until you do give them some sort of attention, whether negative or positive.
  • A means to excercise. Such as; taking your dog on a walk, playing with your cat, or giving your hamster a wheel to run in.

The biggest thing that owners skimp on is hygiene. Cats and dogs need their ears cleaned, their fur washed and combed, (especially long-furred ones) and their teeth brushed. Many of them need their nails clipped, unless they walk on hard surfaces often enough to keep them dull.

Another thing that owners skimp on is giving their animal excercise, especially dogs. If you have a dog and cannot or will not take them for walks or play with them, plan on getting another dog. If a dog has someone to actively play with, then it will help them get the excercise they need. It also helps if you do not want to play tug-of-war with your dog; she can play with the other dog. It is still recommended to take your dogs on walks, or go to the dog park for adequate excercise.

Cats usually can get enough excercise on their own; just make sure you're not overfeeding them. They will become overweight, and while overweight they lose the energy to run rapidly from room to room, which in turn makes them obese. Female cats will usually gain a little weight after being spayed.

Another important thing is to make sure your pets aren't bored. A good example of a bored pet is birds. A bird will pluck his feathers off his chest and back if he has nothing to do. Sometimes they'll pluck enough feathers off that the feathers will never grow back. The best way to stop this is to provide their food in small amounts in different places. This is called scavenging, and it's what birds do in the wild; they have to find their food. There are plenty of different toys available that you can place bird food inside. Start small, and when your bird figures it out, start giving him harder toys. There are also handmade toys you can make, like taking a cardboard tube and sealing food inside of it.

Now that you know just a little bit more about taking care of animals, you can answer my initial question a little more accurately: are you a good pet owner, or a GREAT one?

Dec 9, 2010

Lots O' Pets

What kinds of pets do you have?

I myself have a cat, and my boyfriend and I have a hedgehog. We've only had her since the Wednesday before thanksgiving, so she's still shy and it's hard to get a good picture of her.

Most of the crafts I will be posting will be for cats, small animals (like hedgehogs) and possibly dogs. However, most crafts should be able to be used for other animals, as well. They probably won't be made specifically for the pet I made it for.

My cats name is Wynter. She was born pure white and she's just a domestic long furred cat; my bests friends cat continued having kittens, so I got to keep one. My friend also named all of the kittens, which is great because I really suck at choosing names.

Our hedgehogs name is Amiira. It means "Princess", in Arabic. She is an Algerian Grey, and we bought her from a breeder in Spokane. We picked up Amiira while she was quilling, and though we hold her everyday to make sure she's getting used to us and will be sociable after she's done quilling, she's quite bristly towards us still. She'll let us pick her up and she cuddles up into our elbow for a while, but sometimes she'll come out of hiding to look around, especially if we bribe her with bits of kitty kibble.

What types of pets do you have? I'd love to hear about them, especially about exotic pets. It's really fun telling people I have a hedgehog living in my room, because most people can only make a connection back to Sonic the hedgehog. They don't know what they really look like, and certainly don't know anything about what they eat, how they act, etc.

Dec 8, 2010


What do you think should be done about the overpopulation of animals in the world?

Animals are put to sleep everyday because we don't have room for them.
Many of them are strays, and many of them were lost or runaways.
Some of them were even animals that people owned,
but decided they couldn't keep them for various reasons.

There are tons of people out there who are making an effort to keep this from happening,
but not nearly enough. There are plenty of people who don't feel that it is important.

But it is. It might not be important to you, but it's important in the world.
It's important to the animals themselves.

What do you think should be done?

Please justify why you think your idea could work.

I think that owners shouldn't have the option NOT to spay or neuter their pets,
unless they're liscenced breeders. If they're THAT passionate about breeding their pet,
they can get a liscence to do it; it's not that hard.

For people who want a pet and cannot afford to spay or neuter,
adoption agencies and clinics can provide a free or reduced pay surgery.
This will require fundraisers and donations.