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Hints From Heloise

Saturday, March 7, 2009 12:00 AM

Cat in a Basket

Dear Heloise: I have found that GIFT BASKETS are great for cats. Once all the items are used and the packaging materials removed, a towel or baby blanket can be placed in the bottom to make a cat bed.

I donate the baskets I no longer want to stray-cat adoption agencies found in several local large pet stores. The cats seem to enjoy the cozy place to lie while waiting for new homes! I am sure other rescues would find them useful, too! -- Elizabeth, via e-mail

Cats do love to lounge, and a repurposed basket is just purr...fect! Pet shelters welcome items like these, so check to see what they need. -- Heloise

TREAT WARNING

Dear Heloise: My mother's dog, Cadi, suffocated on a dog-treat bag. While my mother went to her garage, Cadi managed to open the closet door, put her head into the treat bag to get a snack, and it got stuck and would not come off. My mother returned to find her dog dead with the bag stuck on her head. She tried to resuscitate her, but Cadi died.

I am writing this letter to let pet owners know to keep their treats locked up or out of a pet's reach. -- Rebecca, via e-mail

Rebecca, please know that we all weep with you and your mother about this tragic loss. Readers, please watch out for your pets. -- Heloise.

TWO HINTS

Dear Heloise: Buy a BLANK, reflective house-number square from a local home-improvement store and cut it to fit on your dog's tags.

Glue vet or doctor business cards onto free magnets you receive in the mail and store on the fridge. -- Cindy Organ, Spring Branch, Texas

PET PAL

Dear Readers: Patricia and Catharine Vinson of Fredericksburg, Texas, sent a photo of Morgan, their female, tricolored Cavalier King Charles spaniel, looking like she is "smoking" because she is holding a dog treat in her mouth. She was in a puppy mill where she had three litters before she was 2 years old, but now is in a happy, loving home.

To see Morgan, visit www.Heloise.com. -- Heloise

FLIES AND ANTS IN DISH

Dear Heloise: A feral cat, Feather, adopted us. He enjoys canned fish, but so do ants and flies. We put an office fan on low speed next to the dish to prevent flies from landing on the food. Then we filled a shallow dish with water, placed the dish of food in the water, and the ants couldn't get to the food. Make sure the food dish isn't in contact with the edge of the water dish. -- Madge and Mel Hazen, Jacksonville, Fla.

REPEL CATS

Dear Readers: If you have a cat that plays with the dirt in your potted plants, put pine cones, large rocks, shells or stones over the soil to discourage digging. Another hint is to spread citrus rinds (orange, lemon, lime or grapefruit) over the soil, since cats usually don't like the smell. -- Heloise

(c)2009 by King Features Syndicate Inc.

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