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Articles: rats

October 18 2017

Chicago Tops the List of "Rattiest" Cities

For the third straight year, Chicago tops Orkin’s list of the rattiest cities in the U.S. You’d think that rats would freeze to death living in many of the cities listed, including the Windy City, Green Bay (number 50), Minneapolis/St. Paul (number 12), Detroit (number 7), and others. Apparently rats are survivors. Also, as far as…

August 14 2017

The Plague is in the U.S.

The Great Plague lasted 18 months, from 1665 to 1666. Initially, the wise men of the day, particularly clergy, blamed sorcery, witchcraft, and their cats—especially black cats. But what really caused the plague? It was fleas. Fleas that lived on rats. And, of course, killing the cats who ate the rats only made matters worse.* People…

May 30 2017

Cat Cafe Knock Off For Rats

Apparently, tourists in San Francisco don’t have enough to do. With cat cafes catching on throughout the country, here’s a twist: a rat cafe. Hopefully, the cats from the cat cafe won’t be visiting the rat cafe. This is no joke. Not sure how people will actually be eating when the rats abound; I’m guessing…

May 10 2017

Rat City

Is the Windy City about to be re-named the Rat City? It turns out the number of complaints regarding rats has increased 30 percent between November 2016 and February of 2017 compared to one year ago. This problem isn’t benign, ad the instances of leptospirosis (a bacterial infection transmitted by rats) is on the rise in…

May 4 2017

Leptospirosis Around America

Leptospirosis, a bacterial infection spread primarily through the urine of rodents, has been the cause of death for several dogs in New Jersey and a resident of the Bronx in New York City. The uptick in lepto diagnoses and deaths has pet owners and veterinary professionals concerned.  The Blue Pearl Veterinary Hospital in Paramus, New…

March 6 2017

Leptospirosis Test is a SNAP

Of course, it makes sense these days that when dogs not vaccinated for leptospirosis show signs of fever, lethargy, and anorexia, the culprit may be the dreaded bacterial infection also called “lepto.” Diagnosis of the disease is important, because leptospirosis can be deadly. Last year, few had heard of leptospirosis. Now, the disease, which can spread to humans…

February 22 2017

Leptospirosis an Increasing Problem

What’s going on with leptospirosis? The bacterial infection, which can be deadly to dogs and even humans, is spreading around the country. In urban areas, the bacteria is primarily spread by rats, but other critters are quite efficient about carrying the illness, including other rodent species as well as raccoon, skunk, and opossum. Unvaccinated dogs spread…

February 12 2017

Pet Snakes, Lizards, Birds, Rats: All Unlikely Companions

Dr. Laurie Hess, author of “Unlikely Companions: The Adventures of an Exotic Animal Doctor (Or, What Friends Feathered, Furred and Scaled Have Taught Me About Life and Love)” and Deb Krohn, AKC “the frog lady” from the Chicago Herpetological Society talk with me HERE on Steve Dale’s Pet World, WGN Radio about loving pet birds,…

October 16 2016

Do Pets Have Emotions?

Dr. Jaak Panksepp has confirmed with science what pet owners have known for hundreds and likely thousands of years….our pets have emotions. I was honored to sit down to talk with Panksepp, who was the Key Note Speaker at the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists Veterinary Behavior Symposium, held this past year in San Antonio, TX in…

September 22 2016

Is PeTA Crazy? Protecting City Rats?

Has PeTA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) lost their minds?  According to a DNA Info story, PeTA is all upset about Chicago’s most recent effort to control rat population. In fact, at least according to the DNA piece, PeTA feels rats deserve protection. Well, they’re not exactly an endangered species. Years ago (I…

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