Eggs can be consumed in lots of different ways, and are used in lots of wonderful, delicious recipes we all know and love. But do you know fact from fiction when it comes to the health benefits of eggs? Read on to crack the case…
Let’s break down the myths first
“Eating eggs causes bad cholesterol and can lead to cardiovascular problems…” – A prejudice from the 1980s, before scientists demonstrated the benefits of eggs.
Eggs do not cause bad cholesterol in your body. The egg yolk contains about 200mg of cholesterol, making it one of the foods with the highest amount of cholesterol. However, once ingested, this cholesterol does not remain in the body. About 25% of the cholesterol in the food we eat is absorbed by the intestine.
About 75% of the cholesterol in the blood, as shown on your blood test, is produced by the liver. Cholesterol is the result of an unbalanced diet, made up of foods rich in saturated fats (butter, cheese, cold cuts, etc.), which will cause your body to over-produce “bad cholesterol”. Once again, the egg is not responsible for this. Your body is simply out of balance, notably by an inadequate diet, and ends up producing more cholesterol than it needs. However, avoid eating fried eggs or eggs with toast and butter every morning. If you combine eggs with fatty acids, you are likely to increase your “bad cholesterol” levels.
Eggs are not responsible for clogged arteries or cardiovascular problems. It’s all a question of balance. A healthy person can eat up to 6 eggs a week.
Eggs: a fabulous source of micro and macro nutrients
First of all, it’s interesting to know that an egg contains only 90 calories!
Whether it’s the yolk or the white, eggs are full of nutrients and vitamins that are useful for your body to function properly. Eggs contain carotenoids, antioxidants that help to fight against age-related diseases, especially eyesight. But not only that!
Eggs are rich in protein (2 eggs are equivalent to 100g of meat), vitamins A, D, E, K, B2 and N12, as well as phosphorus, magnesium, potassium and minerals, all of which keep your body in perfect working order. Two eggs at 90 calories each and you can make an omelette! Its appetite-suppressant effect makes it a food to include in your meals if you want to feel fuller for longer. Proteins are also involved in the proper functioning and maintenance of muscle tissues.
The vitamin B present in eggs helps your brain to function properly: memory and concentration.
Eggs can be consumed by pregnant women, as the nutrients present in eggs, including vitamin B9, help the growth and proper development of the foetus.
Eggs contain Zinc (for hormone regulation) and with the proteins and vitamins they provide, eggs are a real ally for your hair! There are many recipes on the internet for caring for your hair with the eggs you have on hand.
Top tip: one egg, a few drops of sweet almond oil (no more than 4) and a spoonful of honey and your hair will thank you! Leave on for 10 minutes and rinse thoroughly.
And don’t forget the joy of delicious eggs, after all it’s good for your health but it’s also tasty! Eggs can be used in many different ways, allowing us to vary our meals, to vary our recipes, to vary between sweet and salty. Whether you like eggs fried, boiled, scrambled, in quiche, in cake or in pancakes, there is something for everyone.
You can find our latest cake recipes here or do you want to try out a delicious banana bread? For the perfect pancake recipe click here.
How to choose your eggs
The nutrient content may vary slightly depending on the origin of the eggs you consume. The Omega 3 content may be lower if you buy your eggs from a cage farm than from an organic farm.
What does the marking on the eggs mean?
0 = organic farming
1 = free range
2 = free range, indoor
3 = cage farming, with nest and perch
Have you considered keeping chickens yourself to benefit from the joy of collecting fresh eggs in the morning? As you have seen, eggs are useful for your body and delicious! Having them on hand, without worrying about going shopping, is a real pleasure.
Omlet’s egg skelter and Egg Ramp keep your eggs neatly arranged and stored in order of laying. This ensures that you always use the oldest eggs first, so there is no waste.
Top tip: to tell if an egg is still fresh, take a glass of water and put the egg inside. If it sinks, the egg is still good, if it floats, the egg is no longer fresh and should not be eaten.
Eggs have many virtues and benefits and it is good to eat them every week. The rule of balance on the plate is essential to have a balanced and healthy diet while enjoying delicious recipes.
This entry was posted in Chickens on April 28th, 2021 by juliakretzner
Guinea pigs are sociable, intelligent and playful – and they can get easily bored without enough stimulation. To have a happy and healthy guinea pig you should always have enough toys to keep them occupied. From toys that satisfy their chewing instincts, to those that offer mental stimulation and even their need to explore and exercise. It’s easy to learn how to keep your guinea pig healthy and entertained with these helpful tips.
Guinea pig playtime is something both you and your guinea pigs can happily enjoy together. First, pay attention to your guinea pigs personality, find out what it likes to do: Is he or she timid or curious? Does your guinea pig show interest by chasing a rolling ball? Do they like to chew? This will help you to create games which build around these activities to keep your guinea pig entertained. Always make sure to play in a safe place.
Serve food interestingly
Don’t just put the food in the cage or enclosure, give them a treat that they have to work for! Use our Caddy Treat Holder or fruit and vegetable holders to keep food off the ground and entertain your guinea pigs at the same time. You may also hide the food in a Hay Rack or in a rolled-up kitchen roll. For example, place a piece of cucumber in the middle of the roll and “close” the two sides with hay. Here, the guinea pigs have to eat their way through the hay in order to get to the actual treat. Or simply lure your guinea pigs by offering you the food from your hand. But don’t hold it tightly, release it as soon as the guinea pig has bitten.
Another playful way to keep guinea pigs busy with their food is to threaded or fastened vegetables, fruits and herbs on a rope or knotted with clothespins. The guinea pigs then have to make an effort to get to the food. It’s important that the cord is thick enough so that a guinea pig doesn’t get tangled up in a way and won’t get injured.
A great way to give your guinea pig something to nibble would be to buy some chew toys. They love chewing and what would be more suited than chew toys?
You can also play a chase game with your furry one! Tie a small treat or a toy that your guinea pig loves to piece of string and drag across the floor for them to chase. Make sure you are moving a bit faster than your guinea pig so they can chase after it. This activity is a good way to keep your guinea pig exercising and alert! If you try this out, be extra cautious as to not let your guinea pig get caught in the string or swallow small parts.
You should also make sure to offer your guinea pigs alternatives when it comes to feeding them. For example, in summer they can enjoy fresh grass and seasonal produce like corn. This not only brings variety to the menu, but also new ways to occupy your guinea pigs.
Obstacles, tunnels and tubes
Tunnels invite you directly to explore and are very popular amongst all guinea pigs. They are prey animals, so having lots of areas for them to hide will make them feel much safer. Set up an obstacle course made of tubes and switch it up every week or so. Your cavy will happily walk through and dash around the tunnels. To make it a bit extra fun for your guinea pig, you can hide some treats in the tunnel/obstacle and your little friend can have a sniff around. A great way to animate your furry friends to move and exercise. Afterwards, they can also even take a nap in the tunnel. Our Zippi Tunnel System and Zippi Run Tunnels offer more space and an exciting new level for your guinea pigs to enjoy, while encouraging interactive play and exercise to strengthen your pet’s muscles. You can also combine it with our Hay Rack for even more fun!
Why not try out an obstacle course? Just like other animals, guinea pigs enjoy stimulating activities and they are very smart as well! Set up obstacle courses with cardboard boxes or random objects from around the house. Make sure to provide them with enough space to run around and play. If you’re feeling extra crafty, you can make them a maze!
It’s certainly a good idea to create new vantage points. These do not always have to be houses with flat roofs. Cork tubes, bricks or hay racks also offer enough space for guinea pigs to make themselves comfortable there. Guinea pigs like to keep track of possible dangers and to warn the group. Alternatively, small wooden boxes can be used for this purpose, upside down with a towel as a support or check out our Zippi Platforms.
Provide your guinea pigs with toys such as balls made from plastic, untreated willow or dried grass, and small stuffed toys. Ensure that there are adequate toys for each of your guinea pigs to have at least one of their own at any one time. Make sure to have items, which won’t harm your little friend, e.g. buy a light and small ball which can’t hurt your cavy and which can’t be swallowed.
Try sitting on the floor with your guinea pig and rolling balls to him. You can also use a variety of appropriate and safe bird or cat toys here as well. The hanging bird toys with bells and wooden chew sticks are reported to be safe enough to leave with a piggy, but please remove the bell, unless it’s too large to fit inside a guinea pig’s mouth.
Soft sounds are great tools for training your guinea pig. Use a bell to signal feeding time, and soon your guinea pig will react to the sound. As mentioned in the beginning, if you know the personality of your cavy, you will find the right toy for your guinea pig.
Log bridges are a very popular enrichment for guinea pigs too. They are very versatile and can be used via GIPHY as a tunnel, shelter, ramp, divider and much more. Garden border edging works great too!
Paper/toilet paper rolls always make a great toy, whether you’re using it as a feeding roll or tunnel. However, at some point we would advise you to cut it lengthways so that any pig poking their heads into it cannot get stuck.
Guinea pigs need variety to keep themselves mentally and physically fit. A very simple trick to keep your furry friends entertained is moving the furnishings to a different place after each cleaning of the cage or enclosure. Your guinea pigs will immediately embark on an exploratory tour, sniffing every little house and shelter and jumping on it! Guinea pigs love to rediscover their surroundings while finding even better shelters, playgrounds and viewing platforms. You can hide some treats if you wish, to keep your guinea pig extra amused.
You can attach some nice cosy sleeping areas to the furniture. There’s nothing guinea pigs love more than cosy sleeping areas (unless you include food..). Some popular options include fleece huts or blankets, just be warned that they might toilet in these.
Make their environment varied and interesting with different levels and areas for your guinea pigs to explore; you can use things like ramps and boxes.
Not suitable for Guinea Pig Exercise
Toys: Guinea pigs love to play, but some toys are safer, healthier, and more enjoyable than others. Please always use toys with smooth edges as sharp edges can pose a danger and might hurt your little friend. Moreover, use safe and non toxic toys to gnaw and avoid toys that can be swallowed.
Exercise balls and wheels: These can be even deadly for guinea pigs. Cavys have a different anatomy, and they can badly injure their backs with an exercise ball or wheel. Also, exercise balls are too enclosed and do not provide enough air circulation which can lead to heat stroke. This condition is often fatal for guinea pigs. These activities may be appropriate for some pocket pets like rats, mice, gerbils, and hamsters, but they should never be used for guinea pigs.
Bridges: Bridges are great for your furry friends but please keep in mind, guinea pigs are not necessarily known as the most skillful pets. So, wobble bridges are much more of a danger than a great toy, especially if the pet is not alone in the cage…
Leash/harness: If you think about putting a harness or leash on them, please avoid this. Guinea pigs are by nature flight animals and do not belong on a leash.
If you keep in mind this guidance and advice, your guinea pig will have a lot of fun and will be kept entertained. Try to promote the health of your furry friend and keep your pet amused and happy- your loving little buddy deserves it!
This entry was posted in Guinea Pigs on April 28th, 2021 by juliakretzner
This article is a part of our Pride of Omlet series, a collection of amazing stories which shine the spotlight on extraordinary pets and share their selflessness, bravery, talent and compassion with the world.
-Written by Anneliese Paul
Mipit is a Mental Health Assistance Dog for his human, Henley. Mipit keeps Henly alive and independent. Who wouldn’t love a dog that can put out your recycling, answer your phone, and be your best friend, come rain or shine?
Six years ago, homeless and experiencing mental health crisis, Henley was given a glimmer of hope when she was offered a flat. She reconnected with her mum and dad, and slowly, life started to improve with their help. But something was missing. Henley needed a companion.
Henley’s autistic and always wanted an autism assistance dog, but by now, Henley was too old to apply. One day, Henley and her mum went to get their hair cut. The hairdresser suggested they go to the nearby pet shop to ask if they knew of any puppies; the pet shop gave her two phone numbers. As Henley was leaving the shop, she spotted a leaflet on the window about Mental Health Assistance Dog training.
Henley rang the breeder’s numbers and soon after brought home her first puppy. A jug (Jack Russel cross Pug) she named Lottie. First, she began training with the Kennel Club good citizen dog scheme and then assistance dog training with Darwin Dogs. But at six months old, Lottie was attacked by a pack of six dogs, and Henley decided to stop her training to give her time to recover. With Lottie better, Henley felt it would be good for her to have a friend. So she called Lottie’s breeder to see if any more pups were on the way. Luckily Lottie’s grandmother was pregnant, and when the puppies were born, Henley went to visit and brought home Mipit.
Mipit’s a Jug like Lottie, who Henley chose for his rebellious nature, but despite wayward first appearances, he’s proven to be intelligent, loving and loyal. Within a few weeks, Mipit was doing things that Lottie had taken months to learn, and Henley decided to focus her assistance dog training with Mipit.
He flew through both bronze and silver Kennel Club assessments by the age of one. He was too young to start gold, so Henley started assistance dog training. In under two years, he’d completed all three levels. Lottie had taken the same time to complete only one. Mipit’s instinctive with training. “He can see into the future,” says Henley. “It’s like he already knows before you’ve trained him.”
Henley uses a wheelchair and Mipit is always beside her, ready to help. He opens doors, picks up the phone and takes out the recycling. He does things to make Henley laugh, like playing hide and seek under the duvet. He never turns off. Mipit’s training with Darwin Dogs is unlike any other assistance dog training. Henley has developed a partnership with him to train him in three special skills that are unique to her needs.
Mipits first special skill is to lay flat on Henley’s knee, giving deep pressure therapy to help with the pain she has in her legs. Secondly, he’ll fetch and retrieve anything up to his own body weight. His third skill is a showstopper. If Henley’s been upset anywhere, Mippit will sing to her to help her recover. He often sings Henley out of Sainsbury’s to get her ready for the journey home, and Mipit has become known for his singing in their home town. Sometimes Henley is stopped by people asking, “Are you the one with the singing dog”, and Mipit will gladly give a little performance.
Last year Henley lost her mum. This was devastating for Henley’s mental health. Both Henley and her Dad, Chris, credit Mipit with keeping them a team, working through difficult times and keeping their bond strong. “He forces us to be together in a lovely way. He’ll cuddle Dad and bring him to me. He dives up and gives me kisses when he knows I’m poorly.”
Mipits unconditional and constant devotion to putting a smile on Henley’s face gets her ready for the day, every day. With the help of Mipit and Lottie, Henley hasn’t self-harmed in six years and now lives in a bungalow with a garden with six chickens for company. Soon two rabbits will be joining their extra special support bubble.
Henley’s dad Chris says, “I watch Mipit because he picks up on Henley’s mood. When she’s not feeling good, he moves closer. It gives me comfort to know Mipit is looking after her. He’s a cracking little chap.”
This entry was posted in Uncategorised on April 27th, 2021 by emmaibadioune
Budgies are extremely affectionate pets that love to thrive in a family environment. You don’t need to be a bird expert to keep a small budgie under your roof. However, if you want it to thrive and be happy and healthy, there are a few things to consider.
Omlet offers you a list of 5 things to keep in mind when raising a budgie.
1- Consider investing in a cage that respects your pet and its needs
If you decide to adopt a budgie, this should be a priority. Make sure you have a cage that suits your budgie’s needs and allows it to be happy. A bird needs enough space to stretch its wings and have fun. Make sure the cage is large enough and that it gets enough sunlight. Your budgie will need to see light to be able to thrive.
Budgies fly horizontally and do not fly high, so make sure the cage is wide enough.
It is important to choose a cage that is easy to clean, as you will need to spend time keeping your bird’s area clean. This is essential for your bird’s health (and yours). Budgies need to relieve themselves on a regular basis, approximately every 15 minutes, so you need to have easy access to all areas of the cage so that you can clean the entire cage and avoid unpleasant odours and a dirty environment for your little budgie.
You should also consider a cage that can accommodate several budgies. Although budgies can be kept alone, they do prefer the company of their own kind.
The Omlet solution: The Geo Cage.
The Geo cage complies with current regulations to provide your pet with the space it needs. Its innovative design provides a safe and airy living space for your budgies. This cage is the result of many years of research to provide your birds with an optimal environment to keep them happy.
This cage not only meets the needs of your budgies, but is also functional and can be cleaned quickly and easily. The inside of the cage will be as good as new after your visit. In addition, the Omlet Geo cage offers an exceptional design that allows it to be integrated into any interior decoration.
The cage is extremely important, as is its location. Remember to place the cage in a room with stable temperatures: not too hot, not too cold. Also avoid rooms that are too noisy with too much traffic and activity. Your birds need peace and quiet. A bright room will make your little budgie happy. However, avoid placing the cage too close to windows, as the sun through the glass and the intense heat can be dangerous, or even fatal to your pet.
2- Don’t skimp on accessories
Taking care of your budgie is not only about giving it a place to sleep, it is also about allowing it to have fun and discover many things through a variety of accessories. The bathtub is not a trivial accessory: budgies love to stay clean. There are many plastic tubs available that allow your budgie to clean itself and feel clean all the time. Choose a bathtub that fits your cage and can easily be installed in it. It should be easy to fill from the outside.
At Omlet, we offer a bathtub that fits our Geo cage and its sloping sides perfectly.
Technique for the bathtub: do not fill it to the brim, as you will find water everywhere. The tub should not be too small to allow your bird to enjoy it fully, but it should not be too large either, so that it does not take up all the space in the cage. If the bathtub you have chosen fits easily into your budgie’s cage, you may want to consider adding it for a few hours while your bird takes a bath and removing it the rest of the time.
You should also consider quality drinkers and feeders that will allow you to feed your beloved animals properly and without hindrance.
If your budgie can clean itself and stretch its wings, it is likely to thrive and feel happy. However, it is necessary to keep it occupied with toys.
So think about furnishing its space with useful accessories that entertain your budgie. Vary the shapes, sizes and aspects to offer your pet new experiences.
Perches are extremely important for your birds and play a significant part in ensuring a better lifestyle. Choose perches with a wooden base, such as pine, as plastic fails to offer the proper grip that your bird needs, and can be bad for their feet.
Toys have their place in your pet’s cage, but avoid taking up the whole space. It is important to have several types of toys that you can mix up on a weekly basis to give them more variety and keep your bird entertained.
Toys stimulate your pet and prevent your budgie from getting bored.
3- A happy budgie is a well-fed budgie
There are several ways to take care of your budgie and the first way is to feed it sufficiently with quality food. What does a budgie eat? Your birds’ favourite foods are seeds, vegetables and fruit. Just like other animals, dogs, cats (etc), never give your budgies chocolate and caffeine.
It is essential to ensure that the drinker is always full of water to keep your animals properly hydrated. Your birds will know how much water they need but it must be available to them. If the water is not drunk, it is essential that you change it regularly to prevent the growth of bacteria.
4- Budgies need quality sleep!
Sleep is essential for your bird. It allows your pet to rest its body and recharge its batteries. Just like human beings, sleep helps reduce stress and promotes your pet’s learning and memory. It is estimated that a budgie can sleep between 10 and 12 hours a day. A happy budgie is one that benefits from this rest time in the best conditions.
It usually prepares for bed half an hour before going to sleep. You can improve the sleeping conditions of your budgie by providing an opaque blanket, which does not let light in and ensures that your bird gets the rest it deserves. This solution also allows you to soundproof the cage a little if there is regular activity in the room. It is sufficient to keep the room dark and to let a little light through so that your budgies are not injured if they hear a noise that wakes them up. The Omlet cover offers your birds an ideal solution for a full and restful night’s sleep. It can be placed on any cage and allows your birds to sleep safely.
Establish a routine each night so that your budgies feel comfortable and understand when it is time to go to bed. They will feel confident that there is nothing to worry about and will fall asleep peacefully.
However, if you notice that your budgie(s) panic when you put the blanket on the cage, don’t persist. Some birds have their own habits and there is no point in insisting on certain accessories. If your budgie is happy and can sleep perfectly and peacefully without a cover, that is the main thing.
5- Give your budgie lots of love and get it used to its environment
For a budgie to be happy and healthy, nothing is more important than the love you give them in a healthy environment adapted to their needs. Never rush your budgie and give it time to adapt to any situation, new environment, new toys or accessories…
Don’t hesitate to talk to your budgie and make it feel your presence without smothering it. Repeat its name to get it used to the sound and to assimilate it. If there are several of you in the family environment, introduce the members of your family little by little without rushing your pet. No loud noises or big movements. Your friends or family can enjoy your budgie, but in a calm and respectful way.
Treats and time with your pet will make your budgie happy. Make sure you spend time with your budgie. This will strengthen the bond between you. Gaining your pet’s trust is a long-term process. You can use your fingers to tame your pet little by little, for example by moistening them and placing seeds on them. Intrigued and curious, your budgie will surely come to you.
Do not hesitate to open the cage from time to time to let your bird fly in the open air in a room. Just remember to avoid bright lights that may attract your bird and end up hurting it (sunlight through a window, for example). If you decide to let your bird fly in your home, be careful with objects that could either break, or hurt your pet. The room should be secure enough to prevent your budgie from ending up in the vet’s office.
An unhappy bird may become aggressive or develop health problems. This can manifest itself in regular pecking or screaming. Your budgie, if unhappy, may be more agitated than usual. If you are sure that you have done all you can to keep him happy and his aggressive behaviour persists or you detect abnormal problems, it is time to make an appointment with the vet. In fact, one visit per year to the vet is recommended to check that everything is going well with your pet.
With all these tips and tricks, your budgie can be happy and thrive by your side. All you need is patience and the right equipment and accessories for your pet’s needs.
This entry was posted in Budgies on April 24th, 2021 by emmaibadioune
Rabbits are usually peaceful creatures who love to play and socialise with their owners. But what do you do if your rabbit starts showing signs of aggression? It’s tough to see your pet stressed, and it’s natural to want to help them. Here, we outline a few ways you can minimise bad bunny behaviour and start enjoying the time you spend with them again!
What is aggressive behaviour in rabbits?
There are two major kinds of aggression in rabbits, the most typical being defensive behaviour surrounding their habitat. If your rabbit bites when you reach your hand into their cage or hutch, it’s likely to be territorial defensive aggression. Another kind of aggressive behaviour occurs between your rabbits – for example, if they are fighting each other to the point of injury.
It can be upsetting to see your bunny get hurt, and hard to know what to do. A small amount of fighting is natural between your pets, but if you can see blood on their fur or in the hutch then its possible that the anger is getting out of hand and the bites are getting nasty.
How to help with territorial aggression and biting
If your rabbits bite your hand – or try to – consider how and where you approach your pet. The hutch is often a bolt hole and ‘safe space’ for a bunny and is where they spend most of their lives. If you reach in unexpectedly, it is natural that they might be scared and defensive. Rabbits are prey animals in the wild and are especially jumpy when ‘cornered’ in their safe space!
You may find that if you start to interact with your rabbit in a non-hutch setting – such as a run or play area – you have more chance of a peaceful and happy interaction. Try sitting with your rabbit in the run for a few hours every day, and then beginning to slowly approach with your rabbit’s favorite treats. After spending time like this, you may find that your rabbit starts coming to you more and more, and if the rabbit is initiating the approach, aggression is much less likely.
By spending time with your rabbit in this non-hutch environment, you are teaching your pet that you are not a predator, and that you can be trusted to approach them. Once the trust is established, you should be able to approach the rabbit in its hutch with no problems.
How to stop aggressive behaviour between your rabbits
If you have noticed fighting between your rabbits, and if this seems to be more than just their normal play fighting, you may need to think about how much space they have in their hutch. It could be that your rabbits have grown since you bought them, and their once spacious house is now a little too small for two. It could be that they have spent little time in the run over winter, and so they’ve become a little ‘house-bound’ in their hutch. Cabin fever affects humans and pets alike!
Whatever the reason for the bunnies’ bad moods, it is important that your rabbits should feel happy and relaxed in their hutch. It is likely that the fighting will ease off if they have more elbow room. Rabbits are territorial animals, and they each need their own space as well as a shared space.
Try distracting your brawling bunnies by clapping your hands. The noise will distract them and will hopefully teach your rabbit not to fight. A particularly aggressive rabbit can be deterred by spraying water on their nose – but this isn’t something you want to be doing too often, so if, after the first few sprays, it via GIPHY isn’t making any difference, it’s time for Plan B.
If you decide to invest in a larger hutch but your rabbits continue to show aggressive behaviour, you may have to separate them into two different hutches. That’s Plan B!
The benefits of spaying rabbits
Spaying (also known as neutering) is the term for stopping your pet from having babies and is accomplished via surgery. If your rabbits were from a pet shop, it is likely that they have already been spayed – but if you got your rabbits from a friend, it’s always a good idea to take them to the vet and ask about spaying.
If your rabbit has not been spayed, they are much more likely to exhibit aggressive behaviour to you and any fellow bunny who shares their hutch.
It is common for owners to keep male rabbits or female rabbits in single-gender pairs, and this can lock them into a mating-related feud that neither can win. Your rabbits could be fighting over who is the most dominant in their shared territory, but this fighting is much less likely to occur if they have been spayed.
Equally, if you have decided to keep a male and female rabbit together, it is a good idea to get them spayed, as rabbits can have up to fifty baby bunnies a year! Fifty bunnies may sound cute but consider how difficult it could be to care for and house that many animals!
There are other benefits to spaying your rabbit other than reducing their aggression, such as reducing their chances of getting mammarian, ovarian or testicular cancer. Spayed rabbits are also much easier to train, and are more sociable generally.
If you have only recently brought your pet rabbit home, they may need a little time to get used to their new space and become comfortable. It is natural for any new pet to be nervous and skittish at first, and this could lead to a few aggressive behaviours, including biting, early on.
It’s important to know that your rabbit is more scared of you than you are of it, and that just because it has bitten you doesn’t mean that you won’t end up being the best of friends! If you feel nervous about establishing contact with the rabbit, talk to a friend who has had rabbits for a little longer, or check out some of the reassuring ‘how to’ guides available online.
Just remember that having a rabbit is hugely rewarding and it’s worth spending time hand-training your pet from the outset. As long as they have enough space and no aggressive ‘mating rivals’, they should be every bit as calm and cuddly as you could hope for.
This entry was posted in Rabbits on April 22nd, 2021 by juliakretzner
It can be tricky to decide whether or not your dog should wear a collar or a harness for walks. A lot of it depends on your dog himself, from the breed to his age and activity level.No matter what type of breed you have, one thing’s for sure, they all need to go out on walks! The main two types of leash attachments that you can use for your dog are harnesses or collars.
Whether you just got a new dog and aren’t sure which to use or you are looking to switch things up, it’s important to know the pros and cons for both dog harnesses and collars before making a decision.
Dog collars are the best when it comes to controlling aggressive dogs, puppies or dogs who are in training. It gives confidence to the owners where they can let their dog walk without any fear. It comes with many direct benefits while providing better control to the handler. Dog training is one of the most important reasons for buying a dog training collar. It is one of the first dog training tools that an owner would need. It helps your dog to successfully overcome obstacles. It also helps to guide your dog and secure his attention if it has a short attention span.
Your dog may get a bit rowdy during the walking session. It’s the dog collar that can correct its behaviour when it is misbehaving. Dogs can go on jumping fences, playing in woods, or getting into mischief; so, you should consider durable dog collars with breakaway fasteners.
A dog collar is more convenient than a harness: The main benefit of collar
s is that they can be left on at all times as opposed to a harness, which should only be worn during walks and it’s much easier to snap a collar on and off than a harness.
Another great benefit of wearing collars comes with the metal ring where you can attach your pet’s ID ta
g or name plates with your address, your phone number, veterinarian office phone number or the tag of the dog registration organisation where your dog is registered for identification in case he or she gets lost.
Are you a fashionista or do you love to express individuality? You can even use a bow tie or bandana/scarf as an attachment for the collar.
What can go wrong when you lead a dog by the neck? Quite a lot, it turns out.
The safety of your dog’s neck plays a vital role here. If dogs constantly pulls against their collar, they can injure themselves or reduce the airflow they are getting. Some smaller breeds, like miniature dachshund or poodle, are prone to collapsing tracheas, and a rough tug on the collar can quickly turn into an emergency situation.
Other dogs’ necks are as thick as their heads, e.g. pugs and whippets, so slipping out of a collar is effortless. Even if you have a tough mutt or working dog, repeated pulling on the neck can lead to thyroid damage or spinal injuries over time. Please avoid using collars to walk dogs with medical issues such as glaucoma, a history of proptosed eye, neck injuries, or spinal malformations.
Collars should also not be used on toy breeds and brachycephalic breeds, such as Chihuahuas, Chinese Crested, Italian Greyhound, Maltese, Toy Poodle, Yorkshire Terrier, Bulldogs, French Bulldogs, Boston Terriers, Pugs and Boxers.
The main benefit for using a dog harness instead of a dog collar is the control you have over overly excited dogs, as you have more control over them. If it comes to safety and security harnesses are generally better at preventing accidents because they fasten more securely around your dog’s body and are simply the most secure, and most comfortable way to hook your dog up to his leash. It covers your dog’s chest, shoulders, and upper back, which disperses pressure over a larger surface area whereas collars give you better control over your dog. While dogs can easily slip out of their collars and potentially run into traffic or another person’s yard, harnesses offer much more security and safety.
A good harness will reduce pulling, increase your control over your pup, and decrease stress on his neck and joints. Bonus points: because it secures closer to the dog’s center of gravity, a harness gets tangled in the leash less and helps prevent jumping.
Also here, for the individualists among us, there are different kinds of harnesses, starting from cool, cute or practical, such as bags where you can put some treats or eco-friendly waste bags.
When it comes to specific breeds or diseases, a harness has a better function for your dog:
- Brachycephalic breed: These breed dogs typically have flatter faces, “shortened head” and refers to the short nose and flat face of dogs like Pugs, Shih Tzus, Chihuahuas, Chow Chows, Pekingese, French Bulldogs or Bulldogs. Respiratory issues may be better managed with a harness.
- Tracheal collapse: This is a medical condition where the trachea will fold in on itself causing trouble breathing and a cough. Please avoid using a collar because it applies further pressure and can even worsen the condition.
- Risk factors for spinal problems: A condition called intervertebral disc disease (IVDD) makes long-bodied breeds such as dachshunds very prone to slipped disks. By using a harness you can take pressure off the neck and back and help prevent further damage.
- Orthopedic disease: Dogs with orthopedic disease can have a hard time getting up to walk so a harness can help you get them up and move around more easily.
Harnesses are just less convenient than collars for hoomans. A collar can just slip on, but harnesses take more time to fasten.
Harnesses can be uncomfortable: Harnesses are bulkier than collars, so they can be more uncomfortable for your dog. Some dogs really don’t like wearing harnesses, so it can take some time for them to get used to it.
Harnesses may not have a place for carrying an ID tag. It’s best to get a harness with a ring for a tag—or use both a collar with a tag and a harness when out walking.
If your dog wears weather protection or due to some illness needs to wear clothes, a harness might be a bit more of a disadvantage than a collar. The clothes might cover the harness ring(s), so that you’re unable to put a leash on. Alternatively you can attach the harness over the clothes but make sure -in general- it’s neither too tight nor too loose.
So, collar or harness – which one is now the better option for your dog? There is no general answer to this question as it always depends on the breed and health of your pooch and the use of the item. But please, always keep in mind:
- Collars are less restrictive on movement, which is good for working dogs who are running around all day. Collars are also better for dogs that don’t pull and can calmly walk by your side.
- Harnesses are better for overly excited dogs as you have more control over them.
- Smaller dogs and brachycephalic breeds should avoid wearing a collar.
- It is absolutely advisable to get your puppy used to both, collar and harness.
- If you want to transition an older dog or even a pup from collar to harness be patient – the adjustment phase may take some time. Bring some treats along on your first few harness walks to distract your dog from that unfamiliar feeling, as well as associate the change with positive rewards.
- It also depends on the use of the item. If you want to have a walk with your buddy or take a ride with him in your car (to fasten the seatbelt), it is recommendable to use a harness. If you just let him out in the garden or take him to your friends’ house, a collar is totally fine – same goes with dog kennels.
To sum up, harnesses are usually the best choice for walking dogs because they don’t put pressure on the neck. But collars are generally more comfortable and have a place to hold an ID tag. At best, let your buddy wear both: If you can’t attach a tag or name plate to the harness, use a collar for the ID tag and a harness for the leash.
If you’re looking for the perfect fit for your pooch, you can visit our page about collars or harnesses. Leashes and sets you can find here.
This entry was posted in Dogs on April 21st, 2021 by juliakretzner
This article is a part of our Pride of Omlet series, a collection of amazing stories which shine the spotlight on extraordinary pets and share their selflessness, bravery, talent and compassion with the world.
-Written by Anneliese Paul
Henni Hen is a teaching assistant by trade. A cute and cuddly chicken who loves children. She follows in the footsteps of her bubbly humans, Hamish and Verity.
Verity hatches chicks in an incubator every year at the primary school in Kent, where she works as a reception teacher. It’s a highlight for the children in spring, with lots of learning opportunities and fluffy little chicks make Easter even more special.
It was natural for Henni to become a teaching assistant at an early age. She was, after all, born in a school. Henni helped the children with topic work and became the subject of many good literacy and science lessons.
But Henni’s talent lies in her ability to help children read. Henni can’t read herself, but children who wouldn’t usually read to an adult began taking Henni to beanbag in a quiet corner where they could get cosy. Henni cuddles up and listens patiently to her young reader, giving the odd encouraging cluck.
When Henni and her sisters became too big for the classroom’s hutch, Verity and Hamish moved into a house with a garden. Instead of rehoming the chicks with local farmers (like they usually did), they decided to take Henni and her sisters home. They’d been talking about getting a dog, but both working full-time, the chickens seemed like a good option.
Most of the time, Henni is outside, like an ordinary chicken, scratching in the garden or getting up as high as she can. But Verity and Hamish potty trained her because she loves coming into the house for a cuddle, and of course, she needs to work.
During the lockdown, the children missed holding Henni. So, Henni sprang into action and delivered both live and recorded lessons from the study that she shares with Verity. Verity read children stories, and Henni sat on her shoulder, making sure the children were listening. The deputy head called Verity regularly to make sure Henni’s doing ok.
Being a caring soul, Henni also gave to the community over lockdown. Together, Henni and her sisters lay six eggs a day, so Henni and Verity decided to do a doorstep delivery service for their neighbours. At 10 am, Henni would lay an egg and make a lot of noise about it, so all the neighbours knew when their eggs are ready. Then, Henni would hop onto Verity’s shoulder, and together they delivered eggs to all the houses on their close.
When she returned home, she’d often hop onto her favourite perch (the top of the garage), and the children from the neighbourhood would come over to Verity and Hamish’s to see “the one on the roof!”
Henni and her sisters Megg, Gertie, Margot, Ginger, Rona and Nora used to live in a wooden coop in the garden and come into the garage in winter when it was cold, but Verity and Hamish wanted the best for them. So last year, they got a new home, an Omlet Eglu Cube, and now they’re cosy outside all year round.
But Henni still likes to come inside for a cuddle and can often be found sitting on the sofa between Verity and Hamish for a family film night after a hard week at work.
She’s just an ordinary brown chicken, and she’s low in the pecking order, but she’s got high hopes for the world. She’s very special to the children she teaches and the community she lives in, and of course, to her humans Verity and Hamish. She’s worthy of a gold star for an outstanding effort.
This entry was posted in Chickens on April 20th, 2021 by emmaibadioune
There’s sunnier days ahead…
Get your pet prepared for the hot summer months ahead, and save 20% on the Omlet Memory Foam Cooling Mats until midnight on the 23th of April 2021.
6 reasons you and your dog will love the Omlet Cooling Mat…
Keeps dogs cool in summer for up to 3 hours
Self-cooling gel doesn’t require refrigeration
Memory foam mat for ultimate comfort
Sophisticated colour to suit any home
Easy to clean, simply vacuum and wipe surface
Non toxic gel, rip resistant and waterproof
Terms and conditions
Promotion of 20% off Omlet Memory Foam Cooling Mats runs from 19/04/21 until midnight on 23/04/21. Use promo code STAYCOOL at checkout. Includes all size of Omlet Memory Foam Cooling Mats only. Maximum 2 Cooling Mats per customer. Subject to availability. Omlet ltd. reserves the right to withdraw the offer at any point. Offer cannot be used on delivery, existing discounts or in conjunction with any other offer.
This entry was posted in Dogs on April 19th, 2021 by chloewelch
Everyone loves to stroke, cuddle and pamper their pet. Their fur is soft and warm, and stroking a dog or cat can help humans relax and destress. But despite these positives, your pet’s loose hair can invade your living space, settling on carpets, sofas, beds and furniture. It can be difficult to get rid of. So how can you avoid spending hours cleaning up after your pet?
Spring is finally here and the winter fur is starting to fall out. Avoid being overcome with pet hair and make life easier for yourself in the days to come, with the Omlet tips below…
Removing fur to help pet allergies
Do you often have red, swollen eyes, a runny nose and experience persistent sneezing? If so, it could be because of your pet’s fur. Di dyou know, 40% of European cats are carriers of a bacterium: Bartonella henselae? Researchers thought that this bacteria could only be transmitted through your pet’s scratch, but numerous studies have shown that the bacteria can be transmitted through fur and fleas. This is why it is important to treat your pet and wash your hands after petting it.
Pets affect the quality of the indoor air we breathe. Hair and saliva carry allergens and can cause nose, throat and eye irritation, asthma and breathing difficulties.
Photo de cottonbro provenant de Pexels
So how do you deal with pet hair?
Useful techniques to get rid of hair
Removing pet hair from your home doesn’t have to be a time consuming task. Here’s a few tips and tricks to try…
Photo de Sam Lion provenant de Pexels
Brush your pet’s hair regularly, preferably outside, but if that’s not possible, an easy clean area such as the bathroom may be just right. By brushing your pet, you allow it to shed any hair that may have otherwise fallen onto your sofa or other surface in your home. You can gather the hair in one place and you clean it up much more easily and quickly.
Protect furniture and areas where your pet likes to lounge. Your furry friend is bound to have a special place where he likes to spend time napping and grooming, and these areas can become loose fur hotspots! Try covering your pet’s favourite patch with a towel or blanket.
The ultimate appliance: the hoover. Cleaning your home is essential in normal times, and even more so when you have furry pets. This solution seems obvious and yet it is radically effective. Choose a hoover over a broom. A broom tends to make the hair fly around and instead of getting rid of it, you move it around to other surfaces. You can also vary the end caps to suit all surfaces.
Use dishwashing gloves! An original but effective tip. Use a pair of washing-up gloves to pick up your pet’s hair in a circular motion from the desired spot. The hair will stick to the glove and can be rinsed away.
Use moisture to quickly gather the hair into small balls. Take a damp sponge or flannel and wipe the desired area. Some of the hairs will cling to the sponge while others will clump together. This method should be combined with other techniques to effectively remove your pet’s hair.
The well-known method: the adhesive roller. Using an adhesive roller is particularly effective on your clothes, especially if you do not want to wet them with a sponge. The hair will stick to the tape and lift from the material. This technique is super effective on small surfaces. However, the roller soon becomes full of hairs and it is necessary to change the roller regularly if attempting larger surfaces in your home.
Use specific brushes: velvet brushes, electrostatic brushes, etc. There are all kinds of useful brushes on the market. With a simple movement of the hand, they attract the hair to the brush and lift off your soft furnishings.
Static electricity with tights! Don’t just throw away your frayed tights, they can be reused to pick up your pet’s hair. The friction creates static electricity and attracts the hair to the nylon material.
Ventilation: renewing the air to reduce the concentration of hair in one place. Whether you have pets or not, airing your home is essential to prevent the accumulation of dust and bacteria. You will eliminate bad odours and allow for fresh air to circulate the home.
Photo de Andrea Piacquadio provenant de Pexels
If you really need to keep an area hair-free, the most effective method will be to restrict access to your pet. It may be drastic, but you won’t have to worry about hair in your bedroom cuasing irritation while you try to sleep, for example.
Adapted furniture that makes life easier
Are you tired of your pet’s accessories collecting dust and fur? Invest in the right equipment and think long term.
As well as keeping your pet comfortable, consider buying a functional dog bed that will make life much easier for you too. Omlet’s Topology bed provides your pet with optimal comfort thanks to its memory foam mattress, and also provides the ultimate solution for hygiene, by making cleaning your dog’s bed easier than ever. A variety of mattress toppers allow you to change the style as often as you like, and they are also easy to unzip to put in the washing machine, guaranteeing impeccable hygiene. Now you can easily refresh your dog’s bed to eliminate a build up of fur.
The Maya Donut Cat Bed also has a washable cover, and provides ultimate comfort for your pet. This bed is a neat, cosy size and can even be placed on your sofa if your cat likes to lounge around next to you. When you notice a build up of loose fur, just unzip the cover and put in the washing machine!
Omlet beds (Topology, Bolster and Maya) are designed from the ground up to be functional, practical and easy to clean. Omlet has designed feet to raise your pet’s bed, not only for aesthetic and decorative purposes but also for hygienic benefits. By raising your dog’s bed, you allow air to circulate, which prevents the accumulation of dust and hair. This brand new concept offers you and your pet a healthy and comfortable environment.
Your pet’s fur will always be present, and impossible to eliminate entirely, however, these little tricks will help you to considerably reduce the accumulation of hair in your home and allow you and your pet to live in a healthy, comfortable and hygienic environment.
This entry was posted in Pets on April 17th, 2021 by emmaibadioune
Photo by Daniel Tuttle on Unsplash
When considering whether or not to keep chickens, it’s important to take into account the pets you already have around your home. The most obvious examples are cats and dogs, who sometimes let their chase instincts get the better of them. However, all your pets can get along just fine, as long as you lay down a few ground rules.
Keeping chickens with dogs
If you’re a dog owner, the first thing to consider is the temperament of your pet. Does it often chase rabbits or deer when out on a walk? How does your dog react to birds in the garden? If your hound tends to lose control in these situations, this behaviour is likely to carry over into their relationship with chickens. Equally, if your dog is of a more relaxed temperament, they may show little if any interest in your coop.
The likeliest scenario falls somewhere between the two extremes, in which case you’ll see your dog taking an interest in the chickens, and spending plenty of time watching and attempting to play with them, but not moving in ‘for the kill’. What’s important here is that your dog needs to understand that the chickens are part of the pack, and not something to be hunted. It’s also important that your dog understands that chickens are fragile, and that dog-style rough play is out of the question.
Teaching dogs to get along with chickens
You can teach your dogs that the chickens are part of the family by letting them watch you spending time in the coop – initially keeping them separated with chicken wire or fencing. Many breeds of dog are naturally cautious around small animals and will be protective of your chickens once they consider them a part of the pack. The behaviour you want to see is your dog cautiously sniffing at the chicken, as opposed to adopting the head-down-bottom-up ‘let’s play’ stance.
One of the most important considerations when it comes to dogs and chickens is the temperament of the dog breed. Hunting dogs such as greyhounds and beagles will cave in to their chasing instincts if the hens begin to flap around, and they should never be allowed to mingle with the chickens. In contrast, farm dogs such as sheepdogs have protective and herding instincts, and they will be less likely to harm your chickens.
There is no sure-fire way to guarantee your dogs and chickens will get on, but spending plenty of time introducing them goes a long way. As with all dog training, this can be an extended process, so be prepared to spend a few weeks introducing your chickens to your dogs with a barrier before you let them meet face to face. When you do introduce them, it’s a good idea to keep the dog on a short leash at first, just in case.
Keeping chickens with cats
Cats are a completely different story to dogs – they are harder to predict and less susceptible to training. However, they are unlikely to view a big fat hen as potential prey. Many farmers concur that their farm cats have no interest in hunting poultry, and are much more interested in the rats and mice that are inevitably attracted by birds. When keeping chickens, the occasional rat is standard, and having a cat around can greatly reduce their numbers.
Although most chickens are too large for a cat to hunt, this largely depends on the breed of chicken and the size of your cat. If you find that your cat is beginning to stalk your chickens, a sturdy and secure coop and run that your cat can’t access will deter trouble. This is good practice either way, as even if your cat is friendly with your chickens, your neighbour’s cat might not be! The ideal answer here is the Eglu, which is super-secure and comes with its own attached chicken run.
Keeping chickens with guinea pigs
You may already have a guinea pig hutch or run in your garden, and while this won’t be a problem for your chickens, it is not recommended for chickens and guinea pigs to share living quarters. This is for several reasons, one being that rats will be further attracted to your pets’ food, and they may attack your guinea pigs. Another reason is that when establishing a pecking order, your chickens will peck at each other and any other animal they live with. This can cause serious harm to guinea pigs, who do not have thick feathers to protect them.
Keeping chickens with rabbits
Rabbits can be great companions for your chickens if you introduce them to each other when they are all very young. You will also need to ensure that you care for their different needs within the same run, in terms of food and equipment.
Rabbits, for example, like to have a clean space to sleep in, so you may need to muck out your coop and run more regularly than you would if the chickens were alone. You will also need to ensure that the chickens and rabbits all have a safe space within the coop where they can have privacy and space. You can achieve this by separating your run into three areas, one to house the roosting chickens, another for your rabbits, and a communal space.
Photo by JackieLou DL from Pixabay
Having a large and secure garden run will make your chickens feel safer in general, and plenty of space will maximise the chance of the hens getting along with each other and their rabbit and guinea pig neighbours.
Chickens and other pets
Chickens can also rub along happily with goats, and with female ducks (males will tends to bully them). Ironically, they do not mix with birds in an aviary. They will eat anything that falls to the aviary floor, but they will also happily peck the other birds whenever they can and may attract rats and mice, which will cause problems for the smaller birds.
Small mammal pets such as hamsters and gerbils should never be kept in the same enclosure as chickens. The rodents will be pecked and killed.
By following these few ground rules, you will be able to keep the various members of your mixed menagerie happy!
Photo by Ricky Kharawala on Unsplash
This entry was posted in Budgies on April 14th, 2021 by juliakretzner
This article is a part of our Pride of Omlet series, a collection of amazing stories which shine the spotlight on extraordinary pets and share their selflessness, bravery, talent and compassion with the world.
-Written by Anneliese Paul
On paper, Kipper wasn’t exactly what Angela wanted. After years of behavioural challenges, he’s become the best-behaved blood donor and saved over forty dog’s lives. Kipper’s turned out to be Angela’s perfect match.
When Angela’s house was burgled, the first thing the police said was, “Get a dog.” Because a dog barks, and people are less likely to enter your home uninvited. But working as a teacher, Angela felt she couldn’t look after a dog, especially not an active breed like a collie.
With fond memories of the collie she grew up with, she spent a long time talking to the Border Collie Trust, and they helped her find Kipper. He was an eighteen-month-old Irish stray and had been rehomed multiple times. Being a collie, Kipper had a lot of energy. On paper, he didn’t look right for Angela.
But the Border Collie Trust thought he was the perfect match and persuaded her to meet him. So, she went to the rescue centre to get to know him. Angela could tell he was fantastic with humans, which was really important. So she took him for a walk and fell in love with him. A few weeks later, she brought him home to start their new adventure.
Angela had prepared a lovely kennel and run in the garden for Kipper to spend half the day in. The plan was at lunchtime; he would be walked by a professional dog walker and then left in the house in the afternoon until she got home from school.
Kipper turned out to be hard work, boisterous and disruptive. He destroyed the house and was what Angela describes as ‘over the top’. In the evening, after a long day at work, Angela would go to tie up her shoes for a walk, and he would bite her hair, not in an aggressive way, just incredibly overexcited. It used to take them twenty minutes just to get to the front gate. It was exhausting.
But Angela had experience with Border Collies, she knew he had incredible intelligence, and he just needed things to do. Her teaching instincts kicked in, and with support from the Border Collie Trust, she began what would turn out to be life-changing behaviour training for both her and Kipper.
At first, it was simply stopping and waiting for him to calm down whenever he did something that was ‘over the top’. Then Angela needed to tackle the chewing at home. She started by leaving him for five minutes, going to the front gate, standing across the road, then coming back in and praising him for being good. Angela worked out Kipper’s motivations (toys and food) so that she could effectively train him.
“He is so clever,” says Angela “, That he will work out. What am I being asked to do? What is the reward on offer, and is it worth it? And if it isn’t worth it, he won’t do it.”
Over time he made progress, and his behaviour slowly improved. Angela worked hard with him, and as his obedience improved, their bond grew, so did the trust between them.
Kipper lives on the edge of the countryside and occasionally chases livestock, so he has to wear a muzzle on long walks. But incredibly, Angela can leave him alone, unmuzzled with the chickens in her garden. His behaviour at home has transformed so dramatically that Angela is confident Kipper will do whatever she asks him to. Angela has even watched a big bolshy chicken trying to steal Kipper’s bone!
“The chicken was getting closer and closer and closer, trying to peck at his bone. All Kipper did was pick up the bone and walk away.”
With good obedience at home, they started to have fun together. Kipper achieved Gold in the Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme and got to the Kennel Club Starters Cup Final in 2017, an agility competition for beginners. The activity and the mental work was fantastic for him, and they both made new friends, travelled to new places and shared memorable experiences.
But when Kipper had to have his dew claws removed, he couldn’t do his agility work, and the lack of exercise led to frustration. Angela, always on the lookout for ways to develop Kipper’s potential, discovered CaniCross. Cani sports are a whole range of sports to nurture the bond between dogs and their owners and are particularly beneficial for dogs with behavioural issues.
Taking part in cross country runs and triathlons, Angela and Kipper were getting fit together and making strong friendships with a whole community of like-minded dog lovers.
One of their friends introduced them to the pet blood bank. Angela was keen to give back to the dog community, but he was under the 25kg minimum weight. However, as he matured, his muscle development changed. As soon as he’d gained enough weight, Angela registered Kipper as a donor and proudly took him along to his first session.
But Kipper was terrified. He had to have a little piece of fur shaved and couldn’t stand the sound of the clippers. Once again, Angela turned to training. The blood bank advised using an electric toothbrush to get him used to the vibrating sound. Over time, using his favourite soft cheese as a treat to reward good behaviour, Angela gently got him used to sound until she was sure he knew it wasn’t going to harm him.
Finally, Kipper was ready to give blood, perfectly behaved. He’s now on his tenth donation, and with a rare negative blood type, his blood is a perfect match for any dog. With every donation providing blood for up to four other dogs survival, Kipper has helped save forty dog’s lives.
Kipper and Angela have experienced so much together. Pushing each other to do better, they’re a winning team. Motivating each other to get on with life and do something good, to make friends together. As Angela says,
“Not every dog would suit me, and not every owner would suit him, but the Border Collie Trust got it right. We were meant to be.”
This entry was posted in Dogs on April 13th, 2021 by emmaibadioune
With World Hamster Day looming on 12 April, what better time to celebrate these furry favourites? There are many reasons why so many people decide to get a hamster. Here are 10 of them:
1. Hamsters are friendly!
Golden hamsters, once they have been successfully hand-tamed, form strong bonds with their owners. Although they don’t enjoy the company of other hamsters, they rely on their owners for company and interaction. Chinese hamsters can become very fond of their owners too, although they can also thrive in groups (unlike the Golden). The relatively large size of the Golden hamster makes it easier to handle than the smaller breeds, too.
2. Hamsters are easy to look after
A pet hamster pretty much looks after itself during its nocturnal adventures, and in terms of equipment, all it needs is a suitable cage with a few toys.
3. Feeding hamsters is not expensive
Although a hamster stuffs all the food you give it into its cheek pouches, this doesn’t Photo by Lucas Pezeta from Pexels mean they’re greedy!
The hamster simply hoards the food in its favourite corner and doesn’t actually eat very much on any given day. Your bag of dried food will last several; weeks, especially when supplemented with a few slices of fresh fruit and veg.
4. Hamsters are healthy!
These little rodents are generally healthy during their short lives, as long as they are kept in a suitable cage and fed a nutritious diet. The biggest hazard they face is sustaining injuries through falling, so they need to be handled with care.
5. Hamsters love to explore
Endlessly inquisitive, hamsters love getting out and about in a hamster ball. If you can set up a secure enclosure, they will love exploring its every nook and cranny. Leave some treats hidden in the enclosure or stuffed into wicker balls, and the hamster will have a great time tracking them down and rooting them out. They also love playing on ladders or in runs.
6. Hamsters don’t need intensive training!
Hand-taming a hamster is the beginning and end of the necessary training. There’s no pressure to teach obedience tricks or toilet training, making them a very low-maintenance pet.
7. Hamsters don’t take up much space
These are small mammals, making them suitable even for small flats.
8. Hamsters are super-clean
Unlike most rodents, hamsters choose one spot in their cage for the toilet, making them very easy to clean out. They are also scrupulously clean themselves, forever fussing with their fur. This means their human friends don’t have to do any of the pet washing.
9. Hamsters are calming
Nothing seems to ruffle a hamster. No woofing, no running away in a panic. They scuttle around contentedly and are the most relaxing things to watch this side of a peaceful fish tank!
10. Hamsters don’t shed fur
Many people with allergies say that hamsters cause them no problems. This is linked to the fact that they don’t send tiny bits of fur drifting through the air or sticking to carpets. A hamster is nothing to be sneezed at!
12 April – World Hamster Day
On 12 April, hamster owners the world over celebrate their furry friends. They are one of the most popular pets in the world, and yet they have only been kept as pets for the last 90 years or so.
The story of pet hamsters begins on 12 April 1930, when Israel Aharoni, a zoologist and professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, captured a female Golden (or Syrian) hamster and her litter in Aleppo, Syria. Little did he know that this female would be the source of ALL pet Golden hamsters!
The hamsters were kept as laboratory animals, but escapees became the source of most of the wild Syrian hamsters in Israel today. Descendants of Aharoni’s captive hamsters were shipped to Britain in 1931, and the Zoological Society of London acquired a pair in 1932.
This pioneering pair were the Adam and Eve of British hamsters – in 1937, descendants of these pioneering rodents were given to private breeders, and these were the source of all the Golden hamsters in the British pet trade. If you own one, it’s 99,9% certain that its ancestry goes back to those London Zoo hamsters.
Mitochondrial DNA studies have confirmed that all domestic golden hamsters in the UK and the USA are descended from a single animal – the one captured in 1930 by Israel Aharoni.
That international brotherhood and sisterhood of hamsters is certainly something worth celebrating!
Photo by Silje Roseneng on Unsplash
This entry was posted in Hamsters on April 12th, 2021 by juliakretzner
This article is a part of our Pride of Omlet series, a collection of amazing stories which shine the spotlight on extraordinary pets and share their selflessness, bravery, talent and compassion with the world.
-Written by Anneliese Paul
Once caged battery hens, Hennifer Marge and Sybil now work free-range with their human Jonathan, transforming lives for offenders at the Rosemead Project. Jonathan (support worker and chicken champion) believes the hens have the power to unscramble tricky social situations.
The Rosemead Project is a residential home in Southend on Sea that exists to get people in need of support on the right path, by learning independent living skills to transform their lives. Six years ago, Southend council granted the project funding to transform the garden. They installed a polytunnel, created raised beds and planted fruit trees.
Jonathan introduced chickens to the garden. The ex-battery hens arrived in a sorry state, malnourished with large patches of missing feathers and pale, floppy combs. But within a few weeks of scratching in the garden and the compost heaps, they were on the road to recovery.
When residents arrive, often from homelessness or prison, they are welcomed into their bedroom, and a bowl containing two eggs sits on the side table with a note that says ‘Welcome from Hennifer, Marge and Sybil’.
Jonathan uses eggs to teach residents how to cook simple meals, like omelettes. He’s put posters up in the communal kitchen with recipes showing different ways of cooking eggs. And the eggs have also become currency, cracking once tricky relationships with neighbours. After an anti-social behaviour incident, Jonathan visited Jean, one of the elderly neighbours who was nervous about the project. He took eggs and found that they were a good conversation starter.
It was all going well when a fox came. Doris, the mother hen of their original flock, ran towards the fox to protect the rest of them and was left dead. She’s buried in the garden and a lot of the residents were affected by the attack. So on his next egg delivery to Jean, Jonathan told her about the fox and said he would get some more chickens from the British Hen Welfare Trust. Jean came with him and got some hens too. It was a positive moment.
Hennifer, Marge and Sybil arrived, freed from their horrific caged lives. They’ve been with the project for two and a half years now and are the best-feathered support workers Jonathans ever met. Hennifer is confident, Sybil inquisitive, and Marge is really chilled. She can often be found under the lavender bush.
Residents typically stay with the project for two years before going on to independent living, but the path isn’t always smooth, and occasionally, they are sent back to prison. When this happened to one resident, he contacted the Rosemead Project (through his family) to ask if they could send photos of the chickens, they become an important support to many people living at Rosemead.
Another resident says he loves the sound of chickens clucking when he wakes up. It takes him back to a happy place. And another has taken charge and gets up at 7am every morning to let the hens out. Either sitting or working in the garden, the hens build resident’s confidence. “The hens don’t run away from them. That’s important,” says Jonathan.
Some residents like to buy treats for the chickens, which may seem like a small thing, but when it’s a choice between lager or mealworms and they’re choosing mealworms. It’s a good sign. There’s a trail of jobs that come from the hens that’s good for building life skills and the cleaning and care that goes into looking after a pet provides a sense of responsibility.
Jonathan says, “Sometimes, it’s hard to find positives in this job, but it’s a good thing to give something a quality of life, and the chickens are one of the little things that put a big smile on your face.”
This entry was posted in Chickens on April 6th, 2021 by emmaibadioune
Spring is the best time to set up a chicken coop or bring new hens home. In spring, your birds benefit from longer (and hopefully warmer) days. The garden begins to stir from its winter slumber, and the first fresh greens are available – an essential supplement to your hens’ diets. The chickens will start producing more eggs after the winter lull. They will generally look happier and livelier in this gentler climate of warmth and growth.
When should I buy point of lay chickens?
Point-of-lay hens become available in the spring, as most breeders hatch their chicks in December or January. These chickens are on the verge of laying between 16 and 22 weeks later – hence the term point-of-lay (and, indeed, the term ‘spring chicken’). This means your next generation of hens will be available at some point between mid-March and early June.
Bringing hens home at this time of year, at the very beginning of their laying lives, gives you at least three years of dependable egg production. This is a major consideration for many chicken keepers, as eggs are what it’s all about!
Red mite control
Red mites can be a problem in chicken coops, but their numbers drop drastically in the winter. Early spring is a good time to spray your chicken shed and run against these tiny blood-sucking creatures, before the warmer weather causes a population boom. Your pet supplier may stock a suitable mite spray, and failing that, you can source one from an agricultural supplier.
An even better year round preventative action is to give your spring chickens a coop that is practically mite-free. Mites thrive in traditional wooden coops with lots of nooks and crannies. Keeping hens in a state-of-the-art coop such as the Eglu range gives the pests nowhere to hide and thrive – the coop is made from easily washable plastic, and the mites don’t stand a chance!
Photo by Myriam from Pixabay
While you’re zapping the red mites, spring is also the best time to treat the hens for parasitic worms. Again, there are relatively few of these parasites in the environment at the end of winter, so treating the chickens now is a great preventative measure.
If you’re rehousing barn hens, summer is the ideal time. These birds will not be used to life outdoors, and in the summer the weather will be at its kindest, giving the hens plenty of time to acclimatise. In spring, they’ll be fine; but in summer they’ll be as happy as a newly-liberated hen can possibly be!
Ex-barn hens (and ex-battery hens too, in parts of the world where batteries are still allowed) make great pets, and in spite of having been ‘retired’ by their former owners, they will have up to two years good laying left. In the UK, you can collect these birds via an organisation such as the British Hen Welfare Trust (www.bhwt.org.uk). The advantage of this is that all the hens have been screened for good health, and you will never knowingly be given an unhealthy bird.
If you let your hens free range in the garden during summer, they will pick off pests such as slugs and flies. You may want to protect young shoots and flower beds, though, as chickens are very partial to tender young plants.
If you live in an area that experiences very hot summers, make sure your birds have plenty of shade and a well-ventilated coop. The Eglu is perfect here – relatively cool inside, even on the hottest days, and with an Eglu weather protection shields that can be fixed onto the run to provide shade all day long.
Autumn and Winter Chickens
Autumn is a great season for chickens and chicken keepers. There are lots of juicy bugs to scratch for in the still-soft ground and leaf litter, and if you have any fruit trees, there are rich pickings for the birds in the shape of windfalls.
Hens often moult in the autumn, so they need a good diet to help them stay healthy and grow new feathers. Extra vitamins and minerals will help, and a little apple cider vinegar in their water will help ensure a healthy, glossy new plumage.
Most chickens don’t mind the cold at all. However, they prefer not to get wet, so it’s a good idea to provide bit of extra protection with a cover for the coop, or somewhere dry for the hens to huddle. To prevent the area under the run becoming muddy, cover the ground with bark chippings.
Depending on the breed of your chickens, you will tend to get fewer eggs in the winter, but the supply will never be cut off completely. You can keep the chickens busy and healthy by using Caddi treat holders and peck toys to keep the nutritious food flowing!
Unless the winter months in your area is very harsh, your chickens will be able to keep warm by snugglingup in the coop. They are hardy birds (with the exception of some of the more delicate, decorative breeds), and will adapt to the climate. It’s always a good idea to assist them wherever you can, though, and an insulated coop such as the Eglu will go a long way towards ensuring your birds’ health and happiness in the winter months.
The takeaway message here is that even though spring is the best time to introduce new hens to your garden, they will thrive at any time of year.
This entry was posted in Chickens on April 1st, 2021 by juliakretzner
Photo by Freestocks on Unsplash
Are you eggcited about Easter? Easter is the second biggest family gathering of the year, so let’s celebrate it with some extra “hoppy” Easter games! This year, Easter will be celebrated in a small circle, but this doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all the great fun. Here are 5 festive Easter games that will keep the whole family entertained!
1- Easter Tic-Tac-Toe
This is mostly played by young children but makes a great strategy game for adults too! To make this game extra “hoppy” for Easter, you could paint real or plastic eggs in different colours or decorate them to distinguish each player.
Players then take it in turns placing their egg on the spaces in a 3×3 grid. The player who succeeds in placing three of their eggs in a diagonal, horizontal, or vertical row is the winner!
Photo by Ulleo from Pixabay
2- Hula Hoop Aim
This is a great game for families or groups, where everyone will be entertained – and it’s super easy. Set up five hula hoops on the floor and assign a point value to each (example: the closest hoop is 10 points, the second closest 20,…, and the furthest hoop is 50 points). Give each player five plastic eggs. Have them toss the eggs into the hoops to see who can rack up the most points!
You can decorate the eggs together with your children by painting them in individual colours, so that each player has their own coloured egg. Let the fun begin!
Photo by Patricia Prudente on Unsplash
3- Bunny Hop Sack Race
Old but gold: the hoppiest game in our top picks! Since bunnies hop, having a good old-fashioned sack race is a great fit for Easter, your children will love racing you!
Set up each player with a burlap sack — decked out with a bunny tail — and have them race to the finish line. Make sure you’re on a soft ground. Just don’t forget to whip up some yummy Easter treats for the grand prize winner!
Photo by Michael Schmid on Unsplash
4- Pin Rabbit Tails
This game is for the whole family! Get pom poms and attach double-sided sticky tape to each of them. The players then have to stick the rabbit tails (pom poms) to one another…whoever ends up with most tails on them after 5 minutes of playing loses the game!
Once the game is finished, your children can get creative and do some Easter crafts. The possibilities are endless!
Photo by Eliza Diamond on Unsplash
5- Easter Egg Piñata
Piñatas are great for any celebration but they’re also fun to make! Kids will have a blast making these as much as they will enjoy tearing them down.
You’ll need the following suppliers:
balloons (small, middle and/or big)
- craft glue
- 2 cups water
- tissue paper and/or crepe paper streamers
- 1 cup flour
- newspaper Photo by Cottonbro from Pexels
- craft knife
- wire, string, ribbon or rope (to hang the piñata)
- piñata bat (e.g. baseball bat)
Step 1: Blow up the balloon, tie it closed and tear or cut newspaper into strips.
Step 2: Mix water with flour to create paste. Dip the newspaper strips in the paste and apply the moistened strips to the balloon. Repeat this until the balloon is completely covered – three layers will help make the piñata strong. Make sure not to cover the knot. This is where you’re going to put the treats later. This part is messy but the kids will love getting their hands dirty. To hold the balloon in place while applying the newspaper strips, place it on top of a plastic container that will act as a stable base.
Step 3: Let the piñata dry for at least 24 hours, making sure to rotate it so all sides dry.
Step 4: After it’s completely dry, cut different colored tissue papers in strips and give the kids freedom to choose their colors and start adding stripes with craft glue to cover the base layer. Decorate as you wish. Now pop the knot with a craft knife and pull out the balloon. Punch two small holes around the main hole. Tie a string or ribbon to the holes to create a loop.
Step 5: Now fill your piñata with some delicious treats, like mini chocolate eggs, jelly beans, marshmallows or any other sweets… whatever you prefer!
Step 6: Glue down some crepe paper on top of the hole, or use masking tape. The goal is to prevent the filling of the pinata from falling out before you’ve actually hit it. Tie another piece of string, ribbon, or rope to the loop you’ve already made and use this to attach the pinata to whatever you’d like to hang it from.
Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels
Photo by Eismannhans from Pixabay
Here is a video about how to make a piñata and who explains it better than kids itself?
Here comes an eggstra game! Everything’s a bit more fun with a little mystery. Check out this super cool secret Easter egg hunt!
Let the children – and adults – hunt for the eggs but this time, write a letter on each egg. In the end, when all eggs are collected together, they have to decode the message and they’ll get the clue where the Easter gift is actually hidden. Example: if you hide the gift in the garage, place the letters “G”, “A”, “R”, “A”, “G”, “E” individually on each egg. If they put the letters together, they know where to go for a successful egg hunt! – You can also use Kinder eggs and put individual messages inside.
Omlet wishes you Happy Easter &
a successful Egg Hunt!
Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels
This entry was posted in Uncategorised on April 1st, 2021 by juliakretzner