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Eastern Gray Squirrels

The introduction of the Eastern Gray Squirrel to the western US is a perfect example of why exotic animals should not be released into the wild. Most people now probably think that the common suburban gray squirrel with the bushy tail that scurries all over our back yards is native to the west.
In fact the eastern gray squirrel was brought to the west coast by the early 1900’s and has become the most common squirrel in many parts of the western US. It has also been introduced to many parts of Europe, and there is concern that it may completely replace native species in those areas.
This species is very adaptable, and is a prolific breeder. Typically there are two litters of young annually, with 2-6 young per litter, although as many as 8 in a litter have been described. Feeding of birds, and purposely or incidental feeding of the squirrels, has led to proliferation of the species in many suburban neighborhoods. These animals do fall prey to hawks, skunks, domestic and feral cats, and humans, but have clearly been able to thrive in most areas to which they have been introduced.
Although these Eastern Gray Squirrels are one of the most prominent, and both loved and hated, of introduced species, many other species are likely more harmful. Many plant species are incredibly invasive. Released pet bull frogs are threatening to overwhelm many amphibian and other species competing for food and habitat. European Starlings and English House Sparrows are cavity nesters, and had nearly brought native US bluebirds to become endangered until ingenious birders discovered the secret of bluebird trails and boxes.
The take-home message is don’t think you are being kind by releasing pet exotic animals to nature. They may thrive all too well, putting unnatural selective pressure on native plants and animals.…

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Careers With Animals That Will Last A Lifetime

Many people like having pets around the house, such as dogs, cats, hamsters and guinea pigs. There are others, however, who have an earnest love for animals and are especially concerned for their welfare. Animal lovers can find many rewarding careers with animals that will allow them to make money doing what they love to do.
Animals are special creatures that need and deserve the love, care and attention that humans can offer. People who want to work with animals must demonstrate a great deal of love and patience as they learn how to treat sick and injured pets. People in careers with animals can play an active role in giving animals what they need to have a good quality of life.
Veterinarian medicine is a multi-faceted field of study, as the skills can be used in many areas involving animal care. Becoming a doctor for animals involves the same rigorous coursework that is required for treating humans. The typical four years of college and additional six years of medical school and residency apply, except a veterinarian in training goes to veterinarian school instead of medical school.
There are many areas of veterinarian medicine to choose from when embarking on rewarding careers with animals. A veterinarian treats sick or injured animals just as a doctor treats humans for injury and medical conditions. People can pursue a less rigorous and perhaps less expensive educational training by becoming a Veterinarian Technician. This kind of animal care worker functions like a nurse and works anywhere a veterinarian typically works, including animal hospitals and shelters.
Sometimes, wild animals need care and attention when they get hurt or develop illnesses in their natural habitat. A wildlife rehabilitator must become certified in the appropriate coursework needed to learn how to treat wild animals as well as get the proper permits needed to deal with wildlife. These animal workers play a special role in caring for our natural environment by nursing the animal back to health so it can go back into the wild when it recovers.
People who enjoy working with animals can find a job at a zoo or aquarium as animal attendants if they have an animal science or biology degree. There are other important jobs to choose from, such as animal behaviorists, which usually require a doctorate in some field of animal science. Careers with animals can lead to a fulfilling role in helping to give animals dignified care and attention when they need it.…

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Everything You Have Wanted To Know About Dogs

A dog can be a joy in life, but not always. To get the most out of your relationship with your dog, you’ll need to know a few things. Keep reading to discover great tips for raising a dog properly.

Make sure your house is free of doggy danger. Your entire home should be safe prior to bringing the dog inside. Secure the trash can, stow way all medications and put away your regular cleaning supplies. Certain plants are toxic, and it’s best to move them, too.

Just like humans benefit from an annual physical, your dog should see the vet at least once a year. Because your dog is unable to speak, you may not know for sure when your dog feels sick or has an injury. Making an annual trip to the vet is the best way to discover and deal with these kinds of problems when they’re still manageable.

Be sure to have your pet spayed or neutered. Your pet stands to enjoy a significantly better (and longer) life. It’s been verified through research that this simple procedure reduces cancer risks and provides other benefits, too. They are also more likely to remain close to home, reducing their risk of becoming lost or getting injured by a car or another animal.

Even if your dog is well-behaved, never leave home without putting him on a leash. Wild animals can get his attention and cause him to run out into the street, or a provocation could startle him and cause unpleasantness with other dogs or people. Your dog is your responsibility.

Instead of feeding your dog meat bones, give him rawhide. Rawhide limits the danger when your dog is chewing. Rawhide is healthy and good for their teeth, so don’t share that T-bone no matter what faces they make.

If your dog must be outside, build him a house. A dog can get ill if he is left out in rough weather, so make sure you have a warm, dry dog house where he can rest. Keep your dog safe from precipitation and winds by providing him with a place that is spacious, with a dry floor.

Your dog’s nails need to be trimmed regularly. If they get too long and start to curl, the result could be painful injuries to the nail beds and your dog’s paws. You can do this yourself using a pair of dog clippers from the pet store. If you are not comfortable doing it yourself, you can take him to the groomers and have them done for very little money.

Do not buy the cheapest dog food you can find. Your dog will enjoy greater health benefits from nutritious food. Although this could mean paying a higher price for a better brand, at least you know that your pet is getting the required amount of nutrients in their diet.

You need a lot of things to become a great dog owner. Picking out a new puppy to be your companion is the easy part. It takes time, responsibility and effort on the part of you, the pet owner. Have the best experience with your pet by following the advice presented here.…