People speak sometimes about the ‘bestial’ cruelty of man, but that is terribly unjust and offensive to beasts, no animal could ever be so cruel as a man, so artfully, so artistically cruel.
(Dostoyevsky- The Brothers Karamazov)
Walk your pet in the coolness of the early morning or evening especially in very hot days. You may even take your pet to the local beach, creek or river to let it have a paddle to cool down. This will help your pet avoid possible dehydration, sunburn and potentially painful paws and it will help you and your pet enjoy the walk more.
Make sure all of your pets have cool and shady areas. Cats and dogs are able to move around and seek shade, but small animals such as rabbits, guinea pigs and birds can’t move from their cages. Check and make sure that your caged animals are not in direct sunlight and that their cages are protected from the sun as the shade moves.
Make sure that your pet has access to plenty of cool water. It is a good idea to provide several good-sized water containers in case one is spilt. Ensure the containers are in the shade and try adding some ice to the water to keep it cool for longer.
Consider using a small swimming pool (or a child’s clam shell), fill it with water and place in the shade. Your dog can then wade in the water to keep cool. If your pet share your yard with children, remember to have all necessary precautions in place, including fencing, in order to keep them safe.
Never leave your pet in a car on a hot day as it will not cope, even with the windows down. If it feels hot to a person sitting in a parked car, it will feel much hotter to an animal in a fur coat.
Rabbits and guinea pigs are particularly susceptible to heat and a good remedy is to put a frozen water bottle in their cages so that they can regulate their body temperature. Replace these bottles as required.
Small animals such as rabbits, guineapigs and ferrets, as well as kittens and puppies, cope best if brought inside. If allowed free run in a laundry or bathroom, they will benefit from the cool tiles. If this is not possible, drape their cage with wet towels and provide a sturdy icepack or frozen water bottle for the animal to lean against so it can to regulate its own body temperature.
If your animal seems to be in discomfort, try wetting its feet and misting water onto its face. This is an option for dogs, cats, ferrets, poultry and caged birds as many animals control their inner temperature through their feet. Its important not to saturate a bird’s feathers as this can cause them to go into shock.
African Masked Weaver (Ploceus velatus)
Weaver birds, as their name suggests, weave intricate nests out of reeds and grasses. Nesting in colonies, males have several female partners and build around 25 nests every season.
Derek Keats on Flickr
Chris Eason on Flickr
Assassin Bug Trophies
A second set of armor
assassin bugs are insects of the family Reduviidae and while Reduviidae is a large family one species (Acanthaspis petax) from Malaysia does something extraordinary, when the assassin bug attaches its prey it injects it with a enzyme that liquefies the its innards so the bug can easily suck them out leaving the prey as an empty husk of an exoskeleton. The assassin then takes the empty shell and attacks it to its back using a sticky substance to keep them in place, the bug will pile these carcasses high making a mound of twenty or more exoskeletons. These trophies provide the bug several benefits as the mound of dead prey will make any predator think twice before attacking the assassin bug, and if a predator does attack the expendable mound of husks will serve as the first line of defense so the bug can escape.