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Facts About Torbie Cats – Cats.com


Tortoiseshell cats with the tabby pattern as one of their colors are sometimes referred to as a torbie.

Sheila Fitzgerald / Shutterstock.com

Cats come in many beautiful and unique colors and patterns, some more common than others. ‘Torbie’ refers to a tabby tortoiseshell color pattern.

A torbie cat displays patches of the tortoiseshell pattern and the tabby pattern. Not only is torbie one of the rarest color patterns seen in cats, some people say that torbie cats have unique personalities.

Want to learn some facts about torbie cats? Let’s look more closely at some coat color patterns in cats, and what that might mean for their personality, color and temperament.

How To Tell the Difference Between Torbie, Tortie, Calico, and Tabby Cats

Cats come in many beautiful colors and patterns: some common and some rare. These different coat patterns all have different names, which can get quite confusing.

To better understand what goes into making the torbie pattern, let’s take a look at some common patterns seen in cats and how they relate to the torbie patterns.

Tortoiseshell

The tortoiseshell coat consists of two colors, black and orange, mottled together in a pattern that resembles the shell of a tortoise or turtle. Tortoiseshell cats can also be “dilute” (lighter versions of black and orange). Dilute tortoiseshell cats have two copies of a dilute allele (an alternative form of a gene) that turns black to blue (gray) and orange to cream. In many parts of the world, tortoiseshell cats are considered to bring good luck and good fortune. Tortie cats have even been called “money cats.”

Calico

Calico cat closeup

Calico cats are tri-colored: black, orange, and white. PHOTO FUN / Shutterstock.com

Calico cats have tri-colored fur in a random pattern of intermixed black, orange, and white. As with tortoiseshell cats, calico can also be “dilute” (lighter versions of black and orange). Dilute calico cats are blue (gray) and cream combined with white.

Tabby

Silver tabby cat in a living room

Cats come in five different tabby patterns, including mackerel tabby, which looks like tiger stripes. Dora Zett / Shutterstock.com

Tabby is the most common pattern seen in domestic cats, and can come in all sorts of colors. When you think of a tabby cat you might think stripes, but the striped tabby pattern (called mackerel tabby) is just one of the five different tabby patterns. Though tabby markings vary, all tabby cats have a distinctive M-shaped mark on their forehead.

Classic tabby: The classic tabby pattern is a marbled swirling pattern on the body, head, legs, and tail. The markings appear random, and you can sometimes see a bull’s-eye or target-shaped pattern on the cat’s side.

Mackerel tabby: Mackerel tabby is a tiger-striped pattern that most people envision when they think of a tabby cat. The distinctive stripes run vertically on the body, encircle the legs, and ring around the tail similar to a raccoon. Most mackerel tabbies also have a solid stripe running down the spine.

Spotted tabby: Spotted tabby cats look a lot like leopards or cheetahs, with spots all over the body rather than stripes. Some cat breeds are well-known for their spots, including the Egyptian Mau and Ocicat.

Ticked tabby: You might be surprised to learn that the ticked coat seen in the Abyssinian, Chausie, and a few other breeds is in fact a type of tabby pattern. You won’t see spots, stripes, or marbling in the ticked tabby. Instead, each individual hair is striped with bands of alternating light and dark color. If you look closely, you’ll see that cats with ticked coats have the distinctive M marking on the forehead that is characteristic of the tabby pattern.

Patched tabby: This pattern consists of two different colors of hair mixed across the coat in a patchwork fashion. Sometimes both colors of patches have tabby markings (for instance, orange tabby and brown tabby). Sometimes, one of the color patches is tabby and the other is another pattern, such as calico (termed “caliby”) or tortoiseshell (called “torbie”).

What Is a Torbie Cat?

Beautiful ginger and gray tortoiseshell-tabby cat

Dilute torbie cats are gray and cream with tabby. SJ Allen / Shutterstock.com

As previously mentioned, the torbie (tortoiseshell tabby) pattern is a type of patched tabby.

So what’s the difference between a tortoiseshell and a torbie cat? Well, with a torbie cat, the coat has both patches of tortoiseshell-patterned coat and patches of tabby-patterned coat. The tabby part of the coat may be tabby stripes, spots, or marbled. The tortoiseshell portions of the coat may be classic black and orange, or dilute (blue and cream).

4 Facts About Torbie Cats You Probably Didn’t Know

Torbie cats aren’t hugely common, and the unique nature of their coat pattern adds to their air of mystery. But do they have any other special traits? Let’s look at some interesting facts about torbie cats that you may not have heard before.

1. A Torbie Cat Is Not a Specific Breed

The term ‘torbie’ refers to a pattern, not a breed, and this interesting coat type can appear in many breeds and mixed breeds. Any breed that comes in the tabby or tortoiseshell patterns can also come in the torbie pattern. Some cat breeds that can come in torbie include the American Shorthair, British Shorthair, Cornish Rex, and Maine Coons.

2. Torbie Cats Are Almost Always Female

Almost all tortoiseshell cats are female, which means almost all torbie cats are also female. For a cat to have the tortoiseshell pattern, they must have two X chromosomes (XX), each carrying the different alleles needed to create the tortoiseshell color pattern. Two XX chromosomes always make a cat female (males have one X and one Y chromosome), so the tortoiseshell pattern is only seen in female cats.

In very rare cases, tortoiseshell or torbie kittens can be born male. This may occur if a cat has Klinefelter’s syndrome, which causes male cats to have three chromosomes (XXY). Male torties and torbies are always sterile due to this genetic disorder.

3. Torbie Cats Are Quite Rare

Tortoiseshell cats are somewhat rare, but torbies are even rarer. The patched tabby pattern is one of the least common of the five tabby patterns. The unique coat pattern of the torbie is technically patched tabby mixed with the tortoiseshell pattern, and the combination of these two uncommon patterns makes the torbie a rare sight.

4. Torbie Cats Have Sassy Attitudes

Like tortoiseshell cats, torbie cats have a reputation for being feisty feline divas. In tortoiseshell, this tendency even has a name: tortitude. Since torbies are part tortoiseshell, it makes sense that some torbies display a similar temperament. Whether tortitude and “torbitude” is a real behavior phenomenon or simply a fancy of the human mind is up for debate, but some research supports the idea of a link between a cat’s temperament and their color – let’s call it the “tortitude theory.”

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Kitten Wearing Strawberry-Patterned Dress Found in Massachusetts


Authorities in Everett, Massachusetts, are currently seeking the owner of a kitten discovered in a neighborhood driveway while wearing a strawberry dress. The police are appealing to the public for any information regarding the owner of the adorable feline.

Police looking for owner of kitten wearing strawberry-patterned dress

As per NBC Boston, Everett Animal Control shared a Facebook post on Monday, April 8, featuring a picture of the kitten in a white dress adorned with several strawberries. The shot showed the white-colored cat with gray ears gazing directly at the camera.  

The caption for the post read, “FOUND KITTEN- WEARING A STRAWBERRY DRESS.” Additionally, it said the mature kitten was “found curled up in a driveway near the Parlin School,” according to People.

Anyone with any details about the cat’s owner has been encouraged to reach out to the Everett Police Dispatch at (617) 387-1212. They can also email an ACO (Animal Control Officer) at [email protected]. 

As of Tuesday, April 9, the social media post had garnered over 250 shares. Moreover, concerned users expressed their hopes for the cat’s reunion with its family. 

In addition to the image, the organization posted a video featuring an officer holding the cat dubbed “Strawberry.” The officer speaks tenderly to the kitten, telling her that she is safe in their care. The post presents a clearer look at the kitten’s dress also, asking, “Does anyone recognize it?” 

It further elaborates, “She adores lounging in the ACO’s lap, gently grasping their hand with her paw until she receives some affection. This affectionate kitten must surely be missed by her family.” Lastly, the post reiterated the methods to reach out and reclaim the pet. 

There has been no ownership claim for the feline yet. However, many individuals have offered their homes for the adorable kitten if the owner doesn’t step up.

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Is Holiday Inn Pet Friendly? (2024 Guide)


Holiday Inns are located all around the United States and are designed to accommodate families of all shapes and sizes, including those who like to bring pets along on their travels. Not all Holiday Inns allow pets on their properties, but hundreds of them do, so it shouldn’t be a problem finding a pet-friendly Holiday Inn that will accommodate you and your pet, wherever your destination happens to be.

If you’re interested in Holiday Inn’s pet policies, how to find a pet-friendly location, and what to expect while visiting a hotel with your pet, keep reading!

cat paw divider

Holiday Inn Locations That Are Pet Friendly

Holiday Inns are located around the world, and many accept pets to accommodate the growing number of families that like to travel with their beloved cats, dogs, and other small animals. There is no official list of Holiday Inns that are pet friendly, but you can find locations by searching Holiday Inn’s parent company website. Just input your destination, and a list of pet-friendly locations should be generated along with links to the specific hotels so you can learn more about their pet policies and guidelines.

Holiday Inn’s Pet Policies

Holiday Inn strives to maintain a harmonious balance between accommodating people with pets and those who aren’t interested in having anything to do with animals. Therefore, each location has specific pet policies that must be followed by guests during their stay. These policies vary from location to location, so you’ll need to verify them with the specific Holiday Inn that you plan to stay at with your pet before you get there.

Most Holiday Inns that accept pets require an additional deposit that can range from anywhere between about $5 and $50 (or more) a night, which is to help pay for any damage that’s done to the room and/or additional cleaning services that are needed after check-out. Some locations refund all or part of the deposit if no damage is done or additional cleaning needed.

Pet-friendly Holiday Inn locations provide special signs to hang on the door if you leave your pet in your room alone so staff know not to enter the room. This helps keep your pet and humans safe during your stay for optimal peace of mind.

A bengal cat inside a carrier beside some suitcases
Image Credit: Svetlana Rey, Shutterstock

Pet Policy Examples

Researching the specific pet policies at a few Holiday Inn locations will help you understand how varied they can be. Here are the pet policies of three different Holiday Inn locations that you can use for reference when planning for your next vacation or business trip:

Pet Policies for Holiday Inn Express in San Diego, California — La Mesa

  • Service animals and pets are allowed.
  • The animal weight limit is 90 pounds.
  • A $250 deposit is required per stay.
  • Unattended pets must be crated in their rooms.

Pet Policies for Holiday Inn Tampa North, Florida

  • A maximum of two pets is allowed in each room.
  • There’s a $50 fee per pet, per night.
  • Pets may stay no longer than four consecutive nights.
  • There is no fee for service animals.

Pet Policies for Holiday Inn Express & Suites, Austin Texas

  • All pets are welcome.
  • There’s a $50 fee per pet, per night.
  • No deposit is required.
  • Designated walking area located onsite.

3 cat face divider

Stipulations to Consider

You may encounter location-specific stipulations at the Holiday Inn that you decide to visit.

It’s a good idea to ask the location where you’ll be staying to email you a detailed description of said stipulations. The ones that you might encounter include:

  • Outdoor Access for Pets: Most pet-friendly Holiday Inn locations designate specific sidewalks, paths, and locations on their properties where pets are and aren’t allowed, and it’s the responsibility of owners to follow those designations or otherwise risk losing their rooms.
  • Leash Rules: Any Holiday Inn that you decide to visit with your dog will require you to keep the animal leashed at all times while outdoors on their property. This is for the safety of everyone and all animals that are sharing the public spaces.
  • Room Supervision: Some Holiday Inns allow guests to leave their pets in their rooms while offsite, while others may require that guests stay onsite or take their pets with them while away. It depends on whether the possibility of excessive noise is a concern.
Woman and cat traveling with backpack carrier in the park
Image Credit: sofirinaja, Shutterstock

How to Be a Great Pet-Owning Guest During Your Holiday Inn Stay

There are a few things that you can do to make sure you don’t disturb other guests or become troublesome to management during your stay at a Holiday Inn with your pet. First, make sure your pet is housetrained. Dogs should know how to “hold it” until they can get outside for a potty break, and cats should be able and willing to use a litter box even in strange environments. Dogs should also be well-socialized to ensure that they behave in strange public settings.

Here are other tips to consider:

  • Don’t Leave Your Pet Alone for Long: Even if you don’t think that your pet will make much noise while you’re out of the room, you never know what will happen if you aren’t there to keep things under control. Therefore, it’s a good idea to stay with your pet as much as you can. Try to keep outings under about 15 minutes to minimize the risk of your pet disturbing neighboring guests.
  • Treat Your Pet for Fleas Beforehand: If the hotel discovers that your pet has left fleas behind, there is a chance that you’ll pay an extra fee for the treatment services that will be necessary before new guests can occupy the space.
  • Be Honest: It’s not worth risking your stay at any Holiday Inn by lying about things like your pet’s size or breed. If your pet is larger than the hotel’s policy allows for, don’t try to sneak them in, anyway. You’ll have to take them out for potty breaks, so chances are that you’ll get caught and kicked out of the hotel, scrambling to find other accommodations.

divider-catclaw1

Conclusion

Many Holiday Inns are pet-friendly, but policies vary between locations. Some allow all pets, while others only allow dogs. Some have weight restrictions and some have none. A few properties maintain designated dog parks and walking trails. Many require a deposit, a daily fee, or both for a pet’s stay. No matter the case, it is important to verify the pet policies before showing up to stay at any location with a pet of any kind.


Featured Image Credit: Michael Pettigrew, Shutterstock

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La vie du chat

Is Holiday Inn Pet Friendly? (2024 Guide)


Holiday Inns are located all around the United States and are designed to accommodate families of all shapes and sizes, including those who like to bring pets along on their travels. Not all Holiday Inns allow pets on their properties, but hundreds of them do, so it shouldn’t be a problem finding a pet-friendly Holiday Inn that will accommodate you and your pet, wherever your destination happens to be.

If you’re interested in Holiday Inn’s pet policies, how to find a pet-friendly location, and what to expect while visiting a hotel with your pet, keep reading!

cat paw divider

Holiday Inn Locations That Are Pet Friendly

Holiday Inns are located around the world, and many accept pets to accommodate the growing number of families that like to travel with their beloved cats, dogs, and other small animals. There is no official list of Holiday Inns that are pet friendly, but you can find locations by searching Holiday Inn’s parent company website. Just input your destination, and a list of pet-friendly locations should be generated along with links to the specific hotels so you can learn more about their pet policies and guidelines.

Holiday Inn’s Pet Policies

Holiday Inn strives to maintain a harmonious balance between accommodating people with pets and those who aren’t interested in having anything to do with animals. Therefore, each location has specific pet policies that must be followed by guests during their stay. These policies vary from location to location, so you’ll need to verify them with the specific Holiday Inn that you plan to stay at with your pet before you get there.

Most Holiday Inns that accept pets require an additional deposit that can range from anywhere between about $5 and $50 (or more) a night, which is to help pay for any damage that’s done to the room and/or additional cleaning services that are needed after check-out. Some locations refund all or part of the deposit if no damage is done or additional cleaning needed.

Pet-friendly Holiday Inn locations provide special signs to hang on the door if you leave your pet in your room alone so staff know not to enter the room. This helps keep your pet and humans safe during your stay for optimal peace of mind.

A bengal cat inside a carrier beside some suitcases
Image Credit: Svetlana Rey, Shutterstock

Pet Policy Examples

Researching the specific pet policies at a few Holiday Inn locations will help you understand how varied they can be. Here are the pet policies of three different Holiday Inn locations that you can use for reference when planning for your next vacation or business trip:

Pet Policies for Holiday Inn Express in San Diego, California — La Mesa

  • Service animals and pets are allowed.
  • The animal weight limit is 90 pounds.
  • A $250 deposit is required per stay.
  • Unattended pets must be crated in their rooms.

Pet Policies for Holiday Inn Tampa North, Florida

  • A maximum of two pets is allowed in each room.
  • There’s a $50 fee per pet, per night.
  • Pets may stay no longer than four consecutive nights.
  • There is no fee for service animals.

Pet Policies for Holiday Inn Express & Suites, Austin Texas

  • All pets are welcome.
  • There’s a $50 fee per pet, per night.
  • No deposit is required.
  • Designated walking area located onsite.

3 cat face divider

Stipulations to Consider

You may encounter location-specific stipulations at the Holiday Inn that you decide to visit.

It’s a good idea to ask the location where you’ll be staying to email you a detailed description of said stipulations. The ones that you might encounter include:

  • Outdoor Access for Pets: Most pet-friendly Holiday Inn locations designate specific sidewalks, paths, and locations on their properties where pets are and aren’t allowed, and it’s the responsibility of owners to follow those designations or otherwise risk losing their rooms.
  • Leash Rules: Any Holiday Inn that you decide to visit with your dog will require you to keep the animal leashed at all times while outdoors on their property. This is for the safety of everyone and all animals that are sharing the public spaces.
  • Room Supervision: Some Holiday Inns allow guests to leave their pets in their rooms while offsite, while others may require that guests stay onsite or take their pets with them while away. It depends on whether the possibility of excessive noise is a concern.
Woman and cat traveling with backpack carrier in the park
Image Credit: sofirinaja, Shutterstock

How to Be a Great Pet-Owning Guest During Your Holiday Inn Stay

There are a few things that you can do to make sure you don’t disturb other guests or become troublesome to management during your stay at a Holiday Inn with your pet. First, make sure your pet is housetrained. Dogs should know how to “hold it” until they can get outside for a potty break, and cats should be able and willing to use a litter box even in strange environments. Dogs should also be well-socialized to ensure that they behave in strange public settings.

Here are other tips to consider:

  • Don’t Leave Your Pet Alone for Long: Even if you don’t think that your pet will make much noise while you’re out of the room, you never know what will happen if you aren’t there to keep things under control. Therefore, it’s a good idea to stay with your pet as much as you can. Try to keep outings under about 15 minutes to minimize the risk of your pet disturbing neighboring guests.
  • Treat Your Pet for Fleas Beforehand: If the hotel discovers that your pet has left fleas behind, there is a chance that you’ll pay an extra fee for the treatment services that will be necessary before new guests can occupy the space.
  • Be Honest: It’s not worth risking your stay at any Holiday Inn by lying about things like your pet’s size or breed. If your pet is larger than the hotel’s policy allows for, don’t try to sneak them in, anyway. You’ll have to take them out for potty breaks, so chances are that you’ll get caught and kicked out of the hotel, scrambling to find other accommodations.

divider-catclaw1

Conclusion

Many Holiday Inns are pet-friendly, but policies vary between locations. Some allow all pets, while others only allow dogs. Some have weight restrictions and some have none. A few properties maintain designated dog parks and walking trails. Many require a deposit, a daily fee, or both for a pet’s stay. No matter the case, it is important to verify the pet policies before showing up to stay at any location with a pet of any kind.


Featured Image Credit: Michael Pettigrew, Shutterstock

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Is Best Western Pet Friendly? (2024 Guide)


When you’re traveling but have pets, a whole new set of problems comes up. Perhaps the biggest and most important is what hotels to stay at because not all will accept pets. Even those that do typically charge an eye watering deposit or fee, making matters even worse. What about Best Western, you may ask? Do they allow pets?

Yes, most Best Western hotels are pet-friendly and gladly welcome your four-legged friends, feline or canine. Some even permit birds, snakes, and other pets, but the policy is subject to change. Managers of individual locations, for instance, may decide to not allow birds, cats, or dogs if they wish, even if the company policy is that pets are welcome at Best Western hotels.

If that seems a little confusing, it’s because it is. Most Best Westerns are cool with your beloved pets, but a few might not be. Your best bet is to get on the phone or your email and directly contact the Best Western you want to stay at before you book your stay and to specifically ask for pet-friendly accommodations.

cat paw divider

Best Western Pet Policy, Fees, & Rules

Best Western Hotel Madison
Image Credit: Best Western Hotel Madison

Best Western has over 1,200 pet-friendly locations in North America, and you’ll have no problem finding one nearly anywhere you go in the US. Once you’ve confirmed that the hotel you’re staying at allows your pet, it would be a good time to get familiar with Best Western’s pet-related rules so you don’t accidentally step on any toes during your trip.

Best Western Pet Policy Rules:

  • $150 refundable pet deposit may be required upon check-in at management’s discretion
  • $30 per day flat pet fee per room to a weekly maximum of $150
  • Two domestic pets up to 80 pounds each allowed per room
  • Exotic animals like monkeys, snakes, birds, and more require approval from management and may not be allowed at all locations
  • Your pet may not be allowed free in your hotel room when you’re not present for the safety of housekeeping staff

What Other Hotel Chains Are Pet Friendly?

Best Western is pretty pet-friendly, but they’re far from the only hotel chain out there. Hotel chains typically enforce the same pet-related fees and policies at all locations, so it helps to know which are pet-friendly if you travel with your pet often or just ahead of a special trip. Let’s delve into which hotel chains are generally pet-friendly below.

Other Popular Pet-Friendly Hotel Chains:

  • IHG Hotels & Resorts: Including Marriott, Holiday Inn, Staybridge Suites, and more, most IHG-owned hotels are glad to welcome our furry friends.
  • Hilton: This upscale luxury hotel chain welcomes pets at nearly all locations with very few exceptions.
  • Red Roof Inn: All locations of this underrated hotel chain allow one pet per room for no charge or deposit.
  • Motel 6: This ubiquitous budget hotel franchise is proud to welcome pets at all their locations throughout the US with no pet fees.
  • Hampton Inn: Most Hampton Inns allow pets, but fees and policies may vary based on location, so make sure to call ahead and confirm!

3 cat face divider

Top 3 Travel Tips for Keeping Your Pet Safe

A lot of scary things can happen when you travel, from ordinary nerves to serious emergencies. No matter what happens on the road, it pays to keep a few key things in mind: packing smart, strategizing potty breaks, and locating pet-friendly recreation.

1. Pack Smart

cat owner in hotel lobby
Image Credit: Frau aus UA, Shutterstock

When traveling with a loved one, furry or not, you want to be prepared with all the essentials they need on a daily basis and emergency supplies just in case the unthinkable strikes when you’re traveling. Make sure you pack all the travel supplies below to stay ahead of the travel game.

Recommended Pet Travel Supplies:

  • ID tag with the pet’s name and your contact info
  • Photocopies of your pet’s documents, including vaccinations and other medications
  • Food and treats for the duration of your trip—you may not always be able to grab more on the go
  • Collapsible travel bowls for food and water
  • A favorite toy or two—anything that brings your pet comfort in stressful situations
  • Travel-approved pet carrier
  • Waste disposal bags

2. Strategize Potty Breaks

Traveling with a pet is a lot like traveling with a child in that potty breaks will suddenly become a much bigger issue than they normally are. Get into the habit of taking your cat potty before going anywhere, and we highly recommend trying to stay on your normal feeding and potty times so your pet stays on a comfortable routine.


3. Pet-Friendly Recreation

cat boarding in a pet hotel
Image Credit: Bussakorn Ewesakul, Shutterstock

Entertaining a bored cat can be nearly impossible in a cramped hotel room, but through trial and error, pet owners have figured out some life-saving tips for keeping pets busy when traveling in unfamiliar territory.

Pet Travel Recreation Tips:

  • Look up and write down pet parks and pet-friendly hiking trails near the places you’re going.
  • Make sure your pet knows essential commands before taking them on a trip.
  • Keep your cat confined to their travel carrier until you reach a pet-safe room where they can freak out a little bit without hurting themselves or destroying property.
  • Carve out dedicated chunks of time where you spend quality time with your cat, whether that’s performing tricks, puzzle toys, walks, or outdoor games.

divider-catclaw1

Conclusion

Traveling with a pet doesn’t have to be a harrowing experience, and many hotel chains across the country, like Best Western, are more than happy to welcome your weary pet on your next trip. Whether you’re going across town or cross-country, take care to note the pet-friendly hotels and critical travel tips mentioned above.


Featured Image Credit: Prystai, Shutterstock

Catégories
La vie du chat

Is Best Western Pet Friendly? (2024 Guide)


When you’re traveling but have pets, a whole new set of problems comes up. Perhaps the biggest and most important is what hotels to stay at because not all will accept pets. Even those that do typically charge an eye watering deposit or fee, making matters even worse. What about Best Western, you may ask? Do they allow pets?

Yes, most Best Western hotels are pet-friendly and gladly welcome your four-legged friends, feline or canine. Some even permit birds, snakes, and other pets, but the policy is subject to change. Managers of individual locations, for instance, may decide to not allow birds, cats, or dogs if they wish, even if the company policy is that pets are welcome at Best Western hotels.

If that seems a little confusing, it’s because it is. Most Best Westerns are cool with your beloved pets, but a few might not be. Your best bet is to get on the phone or your email and directly contact the Best Western you want to stay at before you book your stay and to specifically ask for pet-friendly accommodations.

cat paw divider

Best Western Pet Policy, Fees, & Rules

Best Western Hotel Madison
Image Credit: Best Western Hotel Madison

Best Western has over 1,200 pet-friendly locations in North America, and you’ll have no problem finding one nearly anywhere you go in the US. Once you’ve confirmed that the hotel you’re staying at allows your pet, it would be a good time to get familiar with Best Western’s pet-related rules so you don’t accidentally step on any toes during your trip.

Best Western Pet Policy Rules:

  • $150 refundable pet deposit may be required upon check-in at management’s discretion
  • $30 per day flat pet fee per room to a weekly maximum of $150
  • Two domestic pets up to 80 pounds each allowed per room
  • Exotic animals like monkeys, snakes, birds, and more require approval from management and may not be allowed at all locations
  • Your pet may not be allowed free in your hotel room when you’re not present for the safety of housekeeping staff

What Other Hotel Chains Are Pet Friendly?

Best Western is pretty pet-friendly, but they’re far from the only hotel chain out there. Hotel chains typically enforce the same pet-related fees and policies at all locations, so it helps to know which are pet-friendly if you travel with your pet often or just ahead of a special trip. Let’s delve into which hotel chains are generally pet-friendly below.

Other Popular Pet-Friendly Hotel Chains:

  • IHG Hotels & Resorts: Including Marriott, Holiday Inn, Staybridge Suites, and more, most IHG-owned hotels are glad to welcome our furry friends.
  • Hilton: This upscale luxury hotel chain welcomes pets at nearly all locations with very few exceptions.
  • Red Roof Inn: All locations of this underrated hotel chain allow one pet per room for no charge or deposit.
  • Motel 6: This ubiquitous budget hotel franchise is proud to welcome pets at all their locations throughout the US with no pet fees.
  • Hampton Inn: Most Hampton Inns allow pets, but fees and policies may vary based on location, so make sure to call ahead and confirm!

3 cat face divider

Top 3 Travel Tips for Keeping Your Pet Safe

A lot of scary things can happen when you travel, from ordinary nerves to serious emergencies. No matter what happens on the road, it pays to keep a few key things in mind: packing smart, strategizing potty breaks, and locating pet-friendly recreation.

1. Pack Smart

cat owner in hotel lobby
Image Credit: Frau aus UA, Shutterstock

When traveling with a loved one, furry or not, you want to be prepared with all the essentials they need on a daily basis and emergency supplies just in case the unthinkable strikes when you’re traveling. Make sure you pack all the travel supplies below to stay ahead of the travel game.

Recommended Pet Travel Supplies:

  • ID tag with the pet’s name and your contact info
  • Photocopies of your pet’s documents, including vaccinations and other medications
  • Food and treats for the duration of your trip—you may not always be able to grab more on the go
  • Collapsible travel bowls for food and water
  • A favorite toy or two—anything that brings your pet comfort in stressful situations
  • Travel-approved pet carrier
  • Waste disposal bags

2. Strategize Potty Breaks

Traveling with a pet is a lot like traveling with a child in that potty breaks will suddenly become a much bigger issue than they normally are. Get into the habit of taking your cat potty before going anywhere, and we highly recommend trying to stay on your normal feeding and potty times so your pet stays on a comfortable routine.


3. Pet-Friendly Recreation

cat boarding in a pet hotel
Image Credit: Bussakorn Ewesakul, Shutterstock

Entertaining a bored cat can be nearly impossible in a cramped hotel room, but through trial and error, pet owners have figured out some life-saving tips for keeping pets busy when traveling in unfamiliar territory.

Pet Travel Recreation Tips:

  • Look up and write down pet parks and pet-friendly hiking trails near the places you’re going.
  • Make sure your pet knows essential commands before taking them on a trip.
  • Keep your cat confined to their travel carrier until you reach a pet-safe room where they can freak out a little bit without hurting themselves or destroying property.
  • Carve out dedicated chunks of time where you spend quality time with your cat, whether that’s performing tricks, puzzle toys, walks, or outdoor games.

divider-catclaw1

Conclusion

Traveling with a pet doesn’t have to be a harrowing experience, and many hotel chains across the country, like Best Western, are more than happy to welcome your weary pet on your next trip. Whether you’re going across town or cross-country, take care to note the pet-friendly hotels and critical travel tips mentioned above.


Featured Image Credit: Prystai, Shutterstock

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La vie du chat

Not So Crappy! Reframing Poop to Not Hate Cleaning Cat Litter


Dr. Lauren Demos (DVM) Photo

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Hi, I’m Dr. Lauren! Read my introduction to learn more about me and my two adventurous cats, Pancake and Tiller.

Poop. We all might shudder a bit when the topic arises. But touching it? Looking at it? Quantifying and qualifying it? That’s a whole different level of “eww” for many of us.

But what if we reframed these negative connotations about poo, into a positive?

This week’s article aims to provide just that insight, and show you just how your cat’s stool can be useful for indicating your cat’s health, happiness, and beyond. We often think long and hard about what goes into our cats: e.g. food- is it healthy, tasty, how often and how much should we feed…but we often spend little to no time on what is coming out of our cats. Yet it can be equally important. Let’s change that.

Pancake enjoying kibble
We tend to focus on what cats eat, but not the other end of digestion.

Rethinking Cat Poop

So, what is poop? Essentially, it’s what is leftover from eating, that the body couldn’t digest, or wanted to eliminate. In humans, poop is around 76% water, the frequency of defecation is predominantly determined by the ingestion and amount of fiber, and the average number of stool productions is around 1.2 daily.1 Though published data is sparse, it’s likely fair to say that cats are similar. Additionally, just like people, one study in cats found that there is huge variation in the length of time it takes to digest food depending on the individual.2 (Importantly, this same study found as a side note that dry pilling your cat, e.g., giving your cat a pill without food or water– led to 3 out of 17 cats having the pill stuck in their esophagus for over an hour!) But now, back to poop!

Poop also reflects the overall health of the producer. Too firm, and there may be dehydration. Too wet, and the body isn’t absorbing all the water from the stool. (Note, this is not due to an excess of water! I have had many clients over the years that tell me they stop feeding their cat wet food because their cat’s stool was too soft, or their cat had diarrhea! Nope! The colon had an issue, and couldn’t absorb the water before the stool left the body. It wasn’t the amount of water itself! And canned food is great for cats, so please don’t fall into that trap of thinking canned food causes diarrhea by containing too much water!)

Poop also reflects the amount, type and distribution of bacteria living in the digestive tract, also referred to as the microbiome. This has become a buzzword area of medicine in recent years, looking at everything from how the microbiome contributes to gut health, but also brain, kidney and heart health, as well as the immune system. And new data is continually forthcoming! For instance, a recent publication found that certain probiotic strains may significantly reduce skin allergies in certain cats. Sounds like a big deal? It is. All of this is simple, easy, side-effect-free medicine that is cost-effective, and safe. What’s not to love?

Pancake the cat sprawling on a rug
Pancake sprawling

What Is a Fecal Transplant?

Did you know that in human and feline medicine we can use something called fecal transplants to help with chronic diarrhea or other conditions? I’ve met many people who have spoken about their positive experiences with FMT: fecal microbiota transplants.

As a vet, I’ve had some amazing results in my own patients, including my first FMT patient that I’ll call Jesse, who was a 16-year-old Domestic Shorthair diabetic with many years’ history of diarrhea. His owners were ready to euthanize him after trying years of medications aimed to improve his stool, and his quality of life was poor, but a fecal transplant bought him almost an extra year- with normal stool appearing within 24 hours of his transplant.

Basically, the process is similar to blood donation—just involving a different organ. A donor cat (healthy and screened for fecal parasites) provides stool, which is then liquified and used to populate the recipient cat’s fecal tract, therefore transplanting healthy bacteria. It’s an amazingly simple, and yet effective, process. It’s not always curative for patients, but it can be a good tool in the diarrhea arsenal. Medicine can be both functional and mind-aweing, at times! The gut, quite simply, is quite simply powerful.

Pancake and Tiller spend the majority of their day sleeping
Pancake and Tiller at rest

Rules of Thumb for Cat Poop

So, where does this all leave us? Cleaning the litter box may be a drag (or litter tray, for those so inclined), but the information it can provide is proverbial gold. Here are a few rules of thumb, when it comes to feline feces:

  • Overall consistency should be pliable, but firm. Since we all like food, using a Snickers bar analogy: you should be able to deform it, but the stool should still be firm. (Hopefully no one is eating lunch or dessert while reading this!)
  • Color: a light to dark brown. Black can indicate digested blood. I’ve also had clients start new foods that led to color changes in their cat’s feces. A whitish color can mean a lack of pancreatic enzymes, though this is uncommon in cats.
  • Smell: highly malodorous or smelly stool may indicate an issue, such as microbiome upset. But all stool will smell to some extent- that is normal!
  • If using probiotics, use one recommended by your veterinarian. Many probiotics do not meet label claims when tested, therefore using one that actually stands up to scrutiny is important. In one study, only 2 of 25 tested probiotics actually matched product labelling.  I personally tend to use Fortiflora to start, as many cats like the taste, and it’s easy to use, in addition to meeting label claims.
  • Middening is the term for cats defecating inappropriately. In indoor cats, this means outside the litter tray. It can indicate communication about stress, or even dislike of the litter box or litter. Speak with your vet, if this is occurring. Middening should not be confused with cats that go to the tray, but defecate over the edge, or miss the box.
  • Size: Most feline feces is around the diameter of the average human finger. If it’s extremely thin, say pencil diameter, this can indicate a narrowing or stricture of the intestinal tract, and should be investigated. If it’s very large, it can indicate intestinal motility issues, and should also be mentioned to your vet.
  • Never be afraid to take photos of your cat’s stool if something doesn’t look right. Similarly, a video of them in the box can help your vet to see and share any concerns you may have!

The old saying goes: it will all come out in the end. In this instance of poop, certainly, that is true. Health indicators, and gastrointestinal function, can all be assessed by looking at what your cat leaves behind. Hopefully, this sheds some new light on the daily cleaning of the box, and gives you something else to think about during the time you are cleaning, making cleaning the box both functional, and thought-provoking!

Catégories
La vie du chat

Cat Puts His Arms Around Everyone at Animal Shelter Until He Finds a Family of His Own


A cat put his arms around everyone at the animal shelter until he found a family of his own.

shelter cat hugsLenuLollypop Farm

A Good Samaritan came across a stray cat searching for food and started feeding and keeping an eye on him.

As the cat warmed up to them, they decided it was time to bring him in from the cold. They contacted Lollypop Farm, hoping to give the cat the good life he deserved.

« It was clear that the cat was very friendly and socialized before living outdoors, » Lollypop Farm shared with Love Meow. « It is believed that he was left behind when his previous caretakers moved away. »

sleeping cat shelterLindsay at Lollypop Farm

Upon arriving at the shelter, the cat was immediately affectionate, rubbing his face against people, eager for their attention.

Initially, they thought the cat was a girl until, during a vet exam, they discovered he’d had a procedure (commonly performed on male cats) for urinary obstructions. « Lenu was a boy, after all. Everyone loved him just the same. »

shelter cat lap snugglesHe loves cuddling with peopleLollypop Farm

Lenu received much-needed care to help him thrive and plenty of attention and love. The sweet cat followed his people around, trying to be wherever they were.

« He spent his days cuddling with staff members and volunteers. He loved everyone. He is a 4-year-old, 17-pound gentle soul who just wants to snuggle everyone he meets. »

snuggling lap cat shelterLollypop Farm

Lenu would crawl onto any open lap and wrap his arms and legs around his person. He’d chirp, purr, and stretch his toes while slow-blinking contentedly.

When a staff member’s son came to visit the shelter animals, Lenu was determined to make an impression. His goal in life is to dote on every human he comes across and make them fall in love.

snuggly lap cat shelterLollypop Farm

As soon as the boy sat down on the floor, Lenu made a beeline for him and lay comfortably on him. His rotund body filled the boy’s lap, and his right arm extended out as if shielding him from the world.

Lenu gave his little visitor the biggest bear hug he could muster, pressing his face against his chest, purring up a storm.

That day, the shelter shared a photo of the two buddies hanging out, enjoying each other’s company on their social media pages, hoping it would reach the right family.

shelter cat hugs visitorLollypop Farm

A couple stumbled upon Lenu’s post and was instantly smitten with him. They went to the shelter that afternoon to meet him, and it was love at first sight. Lenu plopped himself on their lap as if to say, « You have been chosen. »

« He was adopted exactly one day after becoming available for adoption. »

Lenu quickly settled into his new home and fit into the couple’s lives perfectly. « My husband and I love his gentle temperament. He gets all the belly rubs and the chin scratches. He acclimated so fast, and he’s become our baby boy, » Lenu’s new mom shared.

cat home snugglingLenu has found his forever homeLenu’s family via Lollypop Farm

« We continued with his special diet and got him a special water fountain to help hydrate. »

He is the love bug in the house, offering his mom and dad endless cuddles. « My husband and I adore him and enjoy every cuddle and cute moment with him. I’m able to stay at home with him and give him snuggles whenever he wants them.

snuggly cat belly rubsLenu’s family via Lollypop Farm

In true Lenu fashion, he makes sure every person that comes through the door gets a dose of his love.

« He does so well meeting family and friends and loves to be the center of attention. We couldn’t have asked for a better guy, and we couldn’t love him more. »

beautiful cat grayLollypop Farm

Share this story with your friends. More on Lollypop Farm on Instagram and Facebook.

Related story: Two Kittens Seek Help Together, One of Them Appears Blind but Days Later They Discover He Can See

Catégories
La vie du chat

Martha Stewart Mourns Death of Persian Cat ‘Empress Tang’


Martha Stewart, the renowned lifestyle mogul and devoted animal enthusiast, is bidding farewell to a cherished family member — a Persian cat. On April 8, she shared the heartbreaking news of her beloved pet’s passing on Instagram. Her cat, Empress Tang, was nearly 15 years old. 

Martha Stewart mourns passing of beloved cat ‘Empress Tang’

In an Instagram post, Stewart wrote a heartfelt caption honoring her cat, as People reports. She said, “Empress Tang, my dearest tri-color Persian, passed away this morning of natural causes.” 

Additionally, according to Stewart, “she was an awesome cat… she lived well” and “worked hard.” 

She highlighted that part of Empress Tang’s endeavors included modeling gigs for Martha Stewart Living and the cat litter brand PrettyLitter. 

Lastly, she expressed, “We loved her so much!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Moreover, the passing of Empress Tang follows the heartbreaking loss of another of Stewart’s beloved cats, Princess Peony. She died in a tragic event two years ago. 

Stewart shared on Apr. 3, 2022, on social media that her four dogs had accidentally killed Empress Tang’s sister, Princess Peony. Her dogs mistook the cat for an intruder and tragically ended her innocent life. In Stewart’s words, “I will deeply miss her presence. Rest in peace, my dear beauty.”

Both Princess Peony and her sister, Empress Tang, are classified as dominant calico Persian breeds. Born on May 11, 2009, they became members of Stewart’s household at the age of four months. When they arrived, the lifestyle guru remarked that the pair of kittens had swiftly adapted to their environment. 

As an ardent animal enthusiast, Stewart proudly stated that she once cared for “20 cats, 25 dogs, 10 chinchillas, scores of canaries and parakeets, two ponies, three donkeys, 10 horses, many sheep and goats, hundreds of chickens, geese, turkeys, guinea fowl, quail, peacocks, and homing pigeons.”

In addition, the celebrity brought two Bengal cats to her collection of animals on her farm in October 2022.

Catégories
La vie du chat

Addison’s Disease in Cats: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment


thin ginger cat, lying on side

21MARCH/ Shutterstock.com

Quick Overview: Addison’s Disease in Cats

Addison’s disease is a rare condition in cats caused by disease or damage to the adrenal glands. This condition is technically known as “hypoadrenocorticism,” which means there is reduced activity of the adrenal cortex, the hormone-producing outer section of the adrenal glands.

The signs tend to wax and wane—for example, cats may show some symptoms of the disease, then improve spontaneously. These symptoms include a decreased appetite, lethargy, vomiting and diarrhea. Occasionally, cats go into an “Addisonian crisis,” which involves more dramatic symptoms of collapse and extreme weakness.

Let’s take a more detailed look at the causes, symptoms, and treatments of this disease.

Causes of Addison’s Disease

The signs of Addison’s disease are caused by decreased production of certain hormones normally produced by the adrenal glands, which are two small structures, one located beside each of the left and right kidneys. There are two types of Addison’s disease.

Primary Hypoadrenocorticism

Primary Addison’s disease happens when the adrenal cortex itself is damaged or diseased, resulting in reduced production of the adrenal cortex hormones. This is the most common form of Addison’s disease in cats, and the cause is usually unknown: it’s thought of as a type of auto-immune disease. Rarely does the infiltration of cancer cells (such as lymphoma) cause damage to the cortex.

Secondary Hypoadrenocorticism

Secondary Addison’s disease happens when disease elsewhere in the body has  a secondary impact on the adrenal cortex, with this causing a reduction in output of adrenal cortex hormones. The most common cause of secondary Addison’s disease is conditions affecting the pituitary gland in the skull, caused by inflammation, infection, neoplasia, trauma, blood clots or hemorrhage, or idiopathic causes (i.e. no specific cause can be identified).

Symptoms of Addison’s Disease

Addison’s disease is seen more commonly in young adult cats (less than five years of age), and there is no breed of cat that’s more prone to the condition. Symptoms are caused by the low levels of the hormones that are normally produced by the adrenal cortex. The signs are often vague and intermittent at first, which can make it difficult for owners and vet to diagnose what’s going on in the early stages.

There are two broad types of hormone that become deficient: glucocorticoids and mineralocorticoids. Glucocorticoids (such as cortisol) act in a very wide number of ways in the metabolism, playing strong roles in the normal processing of nutrients, and in the way the body responds to stress. Mineralocorticoids (such as aldosterone) are involved in the control of sodium and potassium in the body.

Glucocorticoid deficiency typically results in:

  • Dullness and lethargy
  • Muscle weakness and generalized weakness
  • Reduced appetite or anorexia
  • Increased thirst
  • Vomiting and diarrhea leading to dehydration, hypothermia and collapse
  • Weight loss with loss of muscle mass

Mineralocorticoid deficiency typically results in:

  • Bradycardia (slow heart rate) or tachycardia (fast heart rate)
  • Cardiac arrhythmias (irregular heart beat)
  • Weak pulses
  • Weakness and dullness

In Addison’s disease, both of these hormones are deficient, resulting in a combination of these signs of disease.

Diagnosis of Addison’s Disease

If your cat has signs that may suggest Addison’s disease, your vet will take the following steps:

1. Detailed Medical History Taking

Your vet will ask about your cat’s condition and overall health care, lifestyle (such as whether they’re indoors or outdoors, their feeding routine, litter box habits, etc), and any possible exposure to toxins such as garden chemicals, toxic plants, medications, or flea treatments.

Addison’s disease is often a long term, chronic type of condition, and the vet may try to establish a timeline of your cat’s condition, going back weeks or months. For example, if your cat is vomiting, they’ll likely ask when this first began.

2. Physical Examination

Your veterinarian will then conduct a full physical exam, taking the body temperature and heart rate and listening to the heart and lungs with a stethoscope.

3. Routine Laboratory Tests

Your veterinarian may carry out some blood tests, including hematology (complete blood count) and a biochemistry profile (including liver, kidney and other parameters). Typically, high potassium levels (hyperkalemia) may be seen along with low sodium (hyponatremia), low chlorine levels (hypochloremia) and sometimes low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). Urinalysis is often carried out, and typically over-dilute urine (low specific gravity) may be noted.

Tests for common viral infections such as feline leukemia (FeLV) and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) may be suggested as part of a general health screen.

4. Specialized Blood Tests

Addison’s disease may be suspected from the history, physical examination, and general blood tests, but to confirm the diagnosis, a specialized blood test is needed, known as an ACTH stimulation test. First, a base cortisol level is measured, then an injection of adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH) is given, and then a second cortisol level is measured.

In normal cats, the hormone injection stimulates the adrenal glands to produce cortisol, meaning the second blood cortisol level should be significantly higher than the first sample. In Addison’s disease, the cortisol level does not go up as it should do, due to the decreased activity of the adrenal cortex.

A cat having a blood sample taken from the front leg

A series of blood samples are needed to confirm the diagnosis of Addison’s Disease. megaflopp / Shutterstock.com

5. Diagnostic Imaging

Radiography (x-rays) and abdominal ultrasound can rule out other causes of the symptoms. In Addison’s disease, subtle changes may or may not be seen in certain areas, but these are not likely to be specific enough to be diagnostic.

6. Electrocardiogram

If a cardiac abnormality is heard with the stethoscope (such as an arrhythmia, bradycardia or tachycardia), your vet may want to do an electrocardiogram (ECG) that can show characteristic changes.

Treatments for Addison’s Disease

If a cat is suffering from an Addisonian crisis (i.e. severe and sudden signs of illness) your vet will likely recommend intravenous fluid therapy. Glucocorticoid (steroid) supplementation is also important, however your vet may wait for a definitive diagnosis before administering this. Once the diagnostic blood tests have been carried out, glucocorticoids may then be given.

After the acute crisis has resolved, and the cat is stable, longer term maintenance treatment may be given, with supplementation of both types of hormones. Daily glucocorticoid supplementation is usually needed, along with some mineralocorticoid medication.

Your vet may choose from the following medications:

  • Fludrocortisone acetate (“Florinef”) is an oral steroid with mineralocorticoid and some glucocorticoid effects.
  • Desoxycorticosterone pivalate (DOCP injection, “Zycortal”, “Percorten”) is an alternative mineralocorticoid supplement which may be given by regular injection.
  • Prednisone, or other glucocorticoids, may or may not be needed.
cat lies calmly on table as the vet gives an injection

A regular injection of a mineralocorticoid is often part of the treatment for Addison’s disease. Tom Wang / Shutterstock.com

Cat Care Tips

Having a cat with a long-term illness can be stressful. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to help make your cat’s life easier.

  • Monitoring: Cats with Addison’s disease need to be monitored carefully for recurrence of signs of illness, including weakness, dullness, reduced appetite, vomiting or diarrhea. Medication doses may need adjusting if your cat’s symptoms start to recur.
  • Vet checks: Your cat will be re-examined regularly, as recommended by your veterinarian, to monitor their progress. Electrolytes measured in a blood sample are a key guide to the efficacy of treatment.
  • Medication: Cats with Addison’s disease may be on multiple medications. Keeping a medication diary can be a useful way to keep track of doses, timings and any check ups.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does Addison’s disease look like in cats?

Addison’s disease is very rare in cats, and symptoms come and go over weeks and months, including a reduced appetite, dullness, vomiting and diarrhea. More signs, including collapse and extreme weakness, are occasionally seen if a cat suffers from an “Addisonian crisis.”

How do you treat Addison’s disease in cats?

When Addison’s disease has been diagnosed, treatment generally involves a combination of regular injections (e.g. once a month) plus daily tablets.

How much does it cost to treat Addison’s disease in cats?

Because multiple tests are needed to diagnose Addison’s disease, the cost tends to be high, sometimes $2,000 or more depending on your location and the cat’s specific case and condition. The ongoing cost of treatment involves both medication (e.g. $100 per month) plus monitoring tests (e.g. up to $200 per month).

What is the prognosis for cats with Addison’s disease?

Affected cats need lifelong treatment, but they are often otherwise healthy and expected to live as long as an unaffected cat.