Dear Readers: If you LOVE THE OUTDOORS and enjoy camping, fishing, hiking, etc., you might be interested in the America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass. This $80 annual pass (FREE to U.S. military members and their dependents) allows you to visit more than 2,000 recreation areas in the United States, and covers the entrance fees. What a deal!

Each pass can have up to two owners (who do not have to be related or married), and anyone 16 years or older can buy one. The pass is valid for a year. The pass owner can have up to three adults in the vehicle with him or her when entering the sites, and children 15 years and younger pay no fee. However, the annual pass cannot be replaced if lost or stolen and is nontransferable.

You can get a pass in person at any federal recreation site or by calling 888-275-8747 (Ext. 1), and of course you can buy it online at -- Heloise


Dear Heloise: This might help those who have cats/dogs with wounds around their necks but cannot wear the “cones” that are sometimes put on after surgery.

Recently, my dachshund-Chihuahua mix dog was attacked by two large dogs — she is okay now! She had lacerations around her neck. Because her wounds were around her neck, she couldn’t wear one of the cones to help prevent scratching or licking the area.

I cut a sleeve from an old T-shirt and put that sleeve around her neck, like a “cowl” neck sweater on a dog, and this prevented her from trying to get at the area. She slept comfortably, and so did I! Hope this can help others. -- Pam H. in Texas


Dear Heloise: Having a disabled husband who uses a shower chair and a 5-year-old great-grandson in the house used to mean lots of wet floors.

I purchased some heavy-duty self-gripping fabric-tape strips. I put one side on the wall at the back of the tub and the other on the shower curtain. Now, no water on the floor. -- Dorothy in Springfield, Ohio


Dear Heloise: My husband wears dress pants and suits to work. Because of the expense, we cannot afford to dry-clean them after every wearing. To keep them fresh and looking good, I put them in the dryer with a damp (wrung out really well) washcloth and a dryer sheet. It works great! -- Sandra M., Clinton, Miss.

A good hint to “freshen” a garment indeed. But keep in mind that suits and dress pants should not need to be dry-cleaned after EVERY wearing. Hang the jacket up (not in the closet) where it can “air out,” and use a soft clothes brush to give both pants and jacket a once-over. You should be able to get many uses before taking it to be cleaned. -- Heloise

Heloise’s column appears six days a week at Send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Tex. 78279-5000, or e-mail it to

, King Features Syndicate