Weekly family rail, with tips for avoiding flea and tick infestations, a review of "Thor" and more.
Tip of the Week
Spring is the unofficial start of flea and tick season - and the ideal time to begin preventatively treating your pet so it doesn't get an infestation. Not only are fleas and ticks an annoyance for dogs, cats and pet owners alike, but they can also cause health issues.
Dr. Melinda Fernyhough, a veterinarian and manager of scientific affairs at the Hartz Mountain Corporation, provides these tips for keeping ticks and fleas at bay:
- Choose the appropriate flea and tick treatment. There are a variety of options to keep your pet healthy, including shampoos, sprays, topical treatments and collars. Topicals are the most popular treatment and are applied monthly to your pet.
- Carefully read the label. It is incredibly important to read and follow the directions on the label. Make sure to purchase the appropriate weight class of product so you don't put too much (or too little) on your pet. Never use a dog product on a cat or vice versa. And keep animals separated until the treatment dries, typically between 24 and 48 hours, to ensure your pet doesn't ingest the treatment from another pet.
- Check your pet regularly. Throughout flea and tick season, make sure to rub your hands through your pet's coat on a regular basis to check for fleas and ticks. And keep an eye out for excessive scratching.
Family Screening Room
Rated: PG-13 (for intense sci-fi action/violence)
Synopsis: Shakespearian-trained Kenneth Branagh (“Hamlet”) sits in the director’s chair, and Oscar-winner Anthony Hopkins stars as the father of the title character, an arrogant god (Chris Hemsworth) who must learn humility before he’s worthy of the throne. Another Oscar winner, Natalie Portman, co-stars as the human who befriends Thor when he is brandished to Earth. – Al Alexander
Violence/scary rating: 4
Sexual-content rating: 2
Profanity rating: 2.5
Drugs/alcohol rating: 2.5
Family Time rating: 3. This isn’t a movie you would want to take young children to, but it should be OK for teens, as its rating implies.
(Ratings are judged on a five-point scale, with 5 being “bad for kids” and 1 being “fine for kids.”)
“The Secret Lives of Princesses,” by Philippe Lechermeier and Rebecca Dautremer (illustrator)
Synopsis: Some princesses are well-known to all children — but others, equally magical (and sometimes, a lot funnier) have remained anonymous, mysterious, and far from the fairy-tale crowd. Now these captivating ladies are finally stepping out of the shadows where they’ve remained hidden for far too long. With wit, sublime humor, and beautiful art, “The Secret Lives of Princesses” introduces a bevy of royal daughters to the court of young readers. - Sterling Publishing
Did You Know
Florida State University researchers found that children’s books in the past 100 years have featured male characters in the titles almost twice as often as females appear in titles.
GateHouse News Service