Cheryl May's Book Reviews

50 Simple Ways to Pamper Your Dog and 50 Simple Ways to Pamper Your Cat by Arden Moore. List Price: $9.95 U.S.; $9.95 at Amazon.com

In return for all the companionship and pleasure your pet brings to you, occasionally you may want to do something special for your cat or dog.

Two books by Arden Moore provide plenty of ideas for doing something extra nice for your pet. The titles are a bit misleading, though. The number 50 refers to chapters in these little books - not to tips. There is a lot of great information packed into these pages -- and plenty more than 50 tips for cats and dogs.

50 Simple Ways to Pamper Your Dog and 50 Simple Ways to Pamper Your Cat offer plenty of unusual and helpful suggestions for doing good things for your pet.

While some suggestions are whimsical and fun, others are more serious, and offer sound advice about pet care. A section in the dog book lists massage "do's and don'ts" which are especially valuable. Moore's tip, "Do look for lumps, swellings, cuts, fleas or ticks" can at a minimum save your dog discomfort and in some cases save your dog's life if a lump turns out to be cancerous.

Another tip, "Don't pat your dog on the top of the head. Switch to smooth, soothing strokes" is excellent advice. Dogs don't like being patted on the head. Watch their body language and they will tell you so.

The cat book has an entire chapter on catnip. If you give your cat more than one teaspoon of catnip each week, the effects of the herb diminish. Moore also provides a list of good cat toys that will last for months or even years: hard rubber, vinyl, latex or nylon. Ping pong balls, wads of paper and paper grocery bags also make good cat toys.

Moore's books provide a lof of important health information - for example she notes that a single dose of aspirin or acetaminophen can kill a cat. Moore also advises pet owners to avoid low-fat pet food. While you don't want to give a cat or dog too much fat, an adequate amount makes for a healthy skin and coat and provides energy. Moore advises pet owners to check with their vets for sound advice on pet food.

In her dog book, Moore offers an Itchy Skin Remedy not caused by fleas:
3 drops agrimony flower essence
3 drops beech flower essence
3 drops cherry plum flower essence
3 drops crab apple flower essence
3 drops walnut flower essence

Pour all the flower essences into a small (four ounce) plastic spray bottle. Fill it with spring water. Seal the top and shake vigorously. Spritz the itchy spots twice a day.

I really enjoyed these little books and they would make great gifts for your favorite pet owner.

Both books are published by Storey Books.

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