It's a dog's life -- and a cushy one at that. This soft bed, suitable for small pooches, can be refreshed with a quick switch of covers. You'll need 2 same-size dish towels, 2-inch-thick foam (cut 4 inches shorter and narrower than the towels), and iron-on Velcro fasteners. Lay towels on top of each other, good sides facing. Sew 3 sides, about 1/2 inch in from towel edges. Turn inside out, insert foam, and iron the fasteners to the open side. For a neat appearance, fold that end as if gift-wrapping a box and use the fasteners to keep in place.
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My hamster looks bored in his cage. He's 2 years old -- should I introduce a new hamster in his cage to keep him company?
On a hamster's report card, the teacher always checks "does not play well with peers," as hamsters are solitary animals and prefer to live alone. Remember that hamsters are nocturnal animals, so they sleep all day and are active at night -- your "hammie" may not be as sedentary as you think. You are probably not watching him at his most active times.
More than 20,000 people from around the world check in on author Terry Golson's chickens each month via streaming video on hencam.com. Three live webcams run at all times on Terry's Little Pond Farm in Massachusetts, giving viewers a peek at eight beautiful hens (Lulu, Buffy, Betsy Ross, Coco, Petunia, Marge, Tina Turner, and Siouxsie), one lop-eared rabbit, and two twin goats.
To learn more, visit hencam.com.
SourceThe Martha Stewart Show, Episode 5128
I have hamsters and ferrets, and they can get stinky. How often should I bathe my little pets?
The animals only get stinky when they're kept in stinky cages, so the cleaner you keep the cages, the cleaner your ferrets and hamsters will be. Pet stores do sell shampoos that work well on both these kinds of pets; however, don't bathe them too often. It will dry out their skin and coats.
Wash your pocket pets once a week, and be sure the water is tepid to slightly cool -- most animals don't like very warm water. After the baths, remember to keep your hamster in a very warm place until he or she is completely dry. They chill very easily when wet.
Fancy hats and a "cake" make a birthday purr-fect. For hat, make a paper cone, and then stitch on a pom-pom and add a thin elastic cord for a chin strap. For collar, attach Velcro dots to the ends of pom-pom fringe. Turn out canned food for a cake. Pom-pom fringe, in 3/8 inches, $2.59 per yd., mjtrim.com. Pom-poms, 1/2 to 2 inches, $10.24 per 8-oz. pack, by Darice, from createforless.com.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, November
Cats have a thing for cardboard, but a plain old box doesn't do much for your decor. Instead, tuck felines into this Modernist chalet ($23, loyalluxe.com). The faux-bois cabin, made from recycled cardboard, is shipped flat for extra eco-friendly credit.
The Roll-a-Nest (from $5, at pet stores) looks like a decorative object but encourages natural nesting instincts. Woven from sisal, the hideout doubles as a snack for guinea pigs and gerbils in need of a nibble.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, November 2010
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