4D | LAREDO MORNING TIMES SUNDAY, APRIL 22, 2007
How to teach your cat
cat in South
looks into the
a great number
of cats are sur-
sues that can
litter box lessons
be corrected By LINDA LOMBARDI Best Friends animal sanctuary in the litter in it.
with just a little ASSOCIATED PRESS Kanab, Utah. “Use different types of pans in
thought and Your vet can also rule out un- different areas of the house,” sug-
experimenta- Americans adore their felines derlying medical issues, such as gests Iampietro. Some cats may
tion. — or so it seems. We own more urinary tract and bladder prob- prefer the covered type of box and
cats than any other type of animal lems. “Also, diabetes, kidney dis- others may dislike it. Older cats or
companion. Still, millions of them ease, thyroid disease or other dis- kittens may have trouble climbing
end up in shelters every year, ease where the urine is less into a box if the sides are too high.
where, according to ASPCA esti- concentrated and the cat is drink- Experience matters, too.
mates, 70 percent are destined for ing more can lead to urination out “If something falls with a loud
euthanasia. of the pan,” says Iampietro. “bang” next to the litter box while
Sadly, a great number of these Take a look at your litter. they are in it, they’ll avoid it from
cats are surrendered for behav- There are many different vari- then on,” says Monsma.
ioral issues that can be corrected eties of litter — experiment to de- Keep your litter box clean!
with just a little thought and ex- termine your cat’s preference. Finally, we like cats for their
perimentation. And one of the “I like the clumping kind be- cleanliness, so we shouldn’t be
most frequent problems is often cause you can get all the waste surprised if they don’t want to use
simple to solve. out every day. But clumping is not a dirty bathroom any more than
“One of the most common com- good for kittens under 6 months. we do. “I am absolutely adamant
Photo by Robert E. Klein | AP plaints is ‘won’t use litter box,”’ The fear is that they might lick it about scooping every single day,”
says Jim Monsma, director of off their paws and get a blockage,” Monsma says.
communications at the Washing- says Monsma. “But ultimately, it is More than one box helps as
ton Animal Rescue League in your cat who will decide, and well. Dr. Iampietro says “provide
Washington, DC. But “at least 95 some are pickier than others. If one more litter box than the num-
percent of the time, the same cat you should want to change litter ber of cats.”
uses a litter box fine at the shelter.” for any reason, you can mix the And don’t forget to clean the
So what can you do at home? new sort in slowly. If you go slow- whole box out periodically.
Visit the vet. ly enough, your cat won’t freak “I let my nose tell me when to
One of the many reasons to and go on a litter strike.” dump out all the litter and start
neuter your pet is that it will usu- Consider litter box place- with fresh,” says Monsma. “Then I
ally stop them from territorial ment, and litter box type. wash the pan out with a mild
spraying, especially males. “Neu- “Bear in mind that cats like bleach solution and make sure it’s
tering helps cut down on spraying privacy,” says Monsma. “You can’t dry and no longer smells of bleach
because removing the testos- put a litter box in the middle of a before refilling it.
terone reduces the tendency for busy hall and expect a cat to use “It helps to have two pans so
male cats to want to be dominant it.” that if one is being cleaned and
and mark their areas,” says Dr. And cats can be as picky about your cat feels the urge, he won’t
Patti Iampietro, veterinarian at litter box type as they are about end up going on the floor.”
Kea, a 6-
poses on a
and Resort in
Photo by Lucy Pemoni | AP
West Highland terrier crowned
El Rey Fido in San Antonio
By JESSICA BELASCO denning after the ceremony. “We paigns. Ami Gordon’s terrier mix,
SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-NEWS love Fiesta. We’re really looking Elle, raised $2,905. Gloria Garza’s
forward to it.” corgi mix, Elmo, raised $2,400,
All things considered, the king Making up Kyle’s court were some of which came from barbe-
was very well-behaved through- Andi Ramsey’s Labrador mix, cue plates sold by Garza’s parents
out his coronation. It was only at Dixie, whose $4,647 in raised in Corpus Christi.
the end of the ceremony that he funds earned her the title of “He had the most people do-
put his front legs on his duchess’ Duchess of the Perpetual Food nating money even if he didn’t
back and happily wagged his tail. Bowl; Alexandria Benningfield’s have the most money. May I say he
Kyle, a West Highland terrier, Lhasa apso mix, Chewbacca, aka is the Barack Obama of the El Rey
was crowned the fifth El Rey Fido Chuy, who was named Duke of Fido race,” said Jennifer Till,
on Saturday at the Humane Soci- the Indestructible Chew Toy af- friend to Garza and Elmo.
ety/SPCA of Bexar County on ter raising $3,105; and Donna In the audience was last year’s
Fredericksburg Road. He and his Montemayor’s Chihuahua, Elvis, El Rey Fido, Prince. His owner,
royal court will be ambassadors named Duke of the Ever-Present Luci Pitman, said the Pomeran-
for the society at the Pooch Pa- Hydrant after raising $3,065. ian still gets recognized on the
rade, the King William Fair pa- New to the court this year were street, even in Austin.
rade and other events during Fi- the Knight and Maiden of the “He says congratulations to his
esta and throughout the year. Round Food Bowl, outstanding in successor, the new El Rey Fido,
The 11-month-old, 12-pound the number of contributors who and wishes him a wonderful year,”
pup won his title by raising more supported them in their cam- Pitman said.
money for the shelter than any
other dog. That is, his owner, Lisa
Worth-Glendenning, raised the
$12,475 through donations from
friends, family and businesses.
All together, the Humane Soci-
ety came out $31,744 richer from
this year’s El Rey Fido race.
Kyle rode to the stage on an
elaborately decorated silver, black
and fuchsia wagon equipped with
a bubble machine. He wore a sil-
ver crown, bejeweled collar and a
black and white robe emblazoned
with the letters “ERF” and
trimmed in fur (faux, of course). It
and five other royal robes were
designed by Cheryl Trevor of Fur-
ry Tail Fashions.
Once perched onstage on a
brown cushion, the royal pooch
accepted a treat from his owner
amid accolades from the emcee,
radio personality and El Rey Feo
1989 Sonny Melendrez.
“It was very fun. And it’s a
good cause,” said Worth-Glen-