Animal House | WGLT

Animal House

A. Seaternity / Flicker via Creative Commons

Seniors and pets make a potent combination. Just because we're older doesn't mean we can't care for a pet any longer, said Dr. Matt Fraker of the Prairie Oak Veterinary Center.

local pups / Flickr via Creative Commons

Responsible pet parents always get their animals vaccinated when they're young. One common vaccination is for the highly contagious and deadly parvovirus.

Tammy Barba

October is Adopt a Shelter Pet Month. But if you want to help shelter animals without going the adoption route, there's a great alternative that can have a positive impact on the lives of homeless animals.

Tom Thai / Flickr via Creative Commons

Sometimes cats can display behavior that can be best described as downright kooky. And when that involves litter box habits, pet parents can get frustrated and confused.

Alan Levin / Flickr via Creative Commons

Fish gotta swim. Birds gotta fly. And, of course, dogs gotta bark. But what does it mean when your pooch barks?

Kostandin Minga / Flickr via Creative Commons

Spaying or neutering your pets can result in great health benefits and longer lives for your animals. But the timing of that operation is crucial.

Pexels / Google Images via CC

There's some illnesses that impact humans that can also afflict our pets -- diabetes, arthritis, heart disease are just a few.  Perhaps the most heartbreaking affliction is also one that's difficult to pin down.

Google Images

Once the excitement of adopting a new pet settles down, you have a big decision ahead of you:  what to name your new friend.

Kai Schreiber / Flickr via Creative Commons

After losing a beloved pet, it's only natural to want to have your buddy back again. And with cloning technology available, it's very tempting to do just that. But is it a good idea?

James Chiucci / Flickr via Creative Commons

A mysterious fungal disease is impacting wild and captive snakes in at least 15 states.

Laura Kennedy / WGLT

One great way to help kids get more excited about reading is to pair them off with a furry pal.

Magnus Brath / Flickr via Creative Commons

Your cat may have a genetic disease -- there's no avoiding it in some felines.  But there are steps you can take to help your cat battle back against genes.

Dennis Hill / Flickr via Creative Commons

When you get a dog, the canine  comes preloaded with fur, tail wags and love.  Oh, and the possibility of a tricky genetic problem.

Mike McCune / Flickr via Creative Commons

Before you head out to work each morning, spare a thought for your pet, spending hours and hours home alone, lonely and bored.

Michael / Flickr via Creative Commons

We train our dogs to do obedience commands to keep them safe and to make sure they're good canine citizens.  Tricks, however, are the gravy of training -- not necessary, but very nice.  But it's not always easy to teach a dog, old or otherwise, a new trick.

Kurt Bauchardt / Flickr via Creative Commons

One of the joys of the holidays is decking your home with festive decor.  But those treasured decorations could pose a problem for the family pet.  Dr. Matt Fraker, from the Prairie Oak Veterinary Center, has some advice.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Looking to venture into reptile ownership?  A good place to start is with a corn snake -- a great animal for the first-time snake owner.

Golly G Force / Flickr via Creative Commons

You can put hours and hours of training into a dog, and still the loveable canine will occasionally misbehave. So what gives?  What does it mean when dogs seem to forget their training to free range their behavior? 

ravas51 / Flickr via Creative Commons

Acne is not just for teenagers.  It can develop on cats, as well.  It's a surprisingly common feline skin disorder that's a component of a much larger syndrome of complex feline allergic skin diseases, said  Dr. Matt Fraker from the Prairie Oak Veterinary Center in Normal.  

MillsBaker / Flickr via Creative Commons

While you're lining up flu vaccinations for yourself and your family, don't forget about the furry members of your family.  The highly contagious canine flu that's infected thousands of dogs, leading to some deaths, is expected to return this season.  This time, forewarned is forearmed, said Dr. Matt Fraker from the Prairie Oak Veterinary Center in Normal.  You can take steps to protect your pet from H3N2.

jvoves / Flickr via Creative Commons

Montreal has enacted a new breed-specific legislation in response to a recent deadly pit bull attack in the city. A 55-year old woman was mauled to death by a dog that was described as a pit bull.  Officers shot and killed the animal, and the tragedy has spurred the city into action.  

Laura Kennedy / WGLT

We've gone far beyond just ordinary kibble when we feed our pets.  There's ample options out there, but could there be danger lurking within the list of ingredients?  Laura Kennedy has more in this edition of Animal House.

Nathanmac 87 / Flickr via Creative Commons

One of the most common eye problems for dogs is cataracts, which can impact canines of all ages and breeds and be brought on by disease, old age and trauma.  While cataracts are not painful, they can lead to even worse eye problems, such as eye loss, said Dr. Matt Fraker from the Prairie Oak Veterinary Center in Normal 

Marian Willitts

There are many, many animal rescue groups that help cats, dogs and other domestic animals find a home.  Fewer still are the rescue groups that help farm animals find sanctuary.  In central Illinois, there's KARA, Kickapoo Animal Rescue Alliance, a place where domestic and farm animals can find sanctuary in a no kill shelter. 

Laura Kennedy / WGLT

Committing to a pet is a major thing, so sometimes it's best to ramp it up with a furry friend that's personable without being too demanding.  A great starter pet is the fun, furry guinea pig.

Anita Ritenour / Flickr via Creative Commons

As students head back to school later this month, they'll be studying the basics, like geometry and world history.  But increasingly, students are exposed to a relatively new field of study involving animals and humans.   Marion Willetts is a sociology professor at Illinois State University and teaches a class she designed called Animals in Society.  This class is a part of what Willetts calls an emerging subfield of social science.

Fimb / Flickr via Creative Commons

Does your dog hound you for hot dogs? Does your cat crave milk? You put a lot of thought into the pet foods you buy your furry friends, and you should be just as careful about the people food you share with them.  Dr. Matt Fraker from the Prairie Oak Veterinary Center said there's some people food that should definitely be off-the-menu when it comes to your pets.

sailn1 / Flickr via Creative Commons

The 4th of July holiday brings a lot of fun -- from parades, to barbecues, to fireworks displays.  But while the fireworks may be thrilling to you, they can produce an entirely different reaction in your dog.

Jeffery W / Flickr via Creative Commons

Pets can be like M&M's.  It's hard to have just one. 

Lima Andruska / Flickr via Creative Commons

Summer hasn't even officially begun and it's already blazing hot and humid in central Illinois.  Temperatures in the 90's can take their toll on everyone -- including our pets.  When it comes to our furry pals, high temperatures can be dangerous -- even deadly.

Pages