Best Websites for Pets

This article reviews 14 of the best websites for owners of dogs, cats, birds, fish, reptiles, and other pets.

No doubt about it, we humans are crazy about our pets. We feed and cloth them, train and care for them, photograph them, and take them with us wherever we go.

They are not just animals; they are highly valued members of our families, our communities, and our lives.

Pet related websites have grown at a mind-boggling rate in the last few years. A simple search turns up dozens of pages - and finding the information you need can be confusing, not to mention time-consuming. The following list is a sample of the most useful and user-friendly "must-see" sites for pets and the humans that love them.

Petfinder Whether you're looking for your first pet or adding to your family, there are thousands of animals in shelters just waiting for a loving home. Petfinder helps you find just the right one. Sponsored by the Discovery channel, this site allows you to view available pets in shelters in your area.

There is also a local classified area, where you can post a pet classified for free. If you're not ready to adopt, you can sponsor a pet or donate to your local shelter. The site also has an extensive learning library as well as links to free training videos on its Animal Planet partner site.

The Pet Center If your pet has health concerns, visit "The Internet Animal Hospital" for a fascinating look at common and not-so-common pet ailments. The Pet Center is written by practicing veterinarians, who tell you what to expect when you take your pet to the vet. The large library of articles is well-organized and searchable.

There are photos of health conditions, as well as x-rays and surgeries. These vets are enthusiastic about what they do - so be warned that some of the surgery photos are graphic. Overall a fascinating site.

1-800-Petmeds You may have seen Petmeds advertised on television. A visit to their website offers you an extensive product line for dogs, cats, and horses. Naturally, you will find prescription and non-prescription medications, with complete product information and customer comments and reviews.

The site also offers a variety of products for skin, ear, nail, hoof, and dental care. Petmeds also carries basic pet supplies and vitamin supplements.

Cheap Pet StoreLooking for a pet product? Any pet product? Type it into the search box and this site compares prices for several different suppliers - with links to the companies' websites. This is an excellent comparison-shopping website.

Be sure and click on the Pet Library icon at the top of the page; the article list is excellent and covers a wide variety of pets, including barnyard animals and fish ponds. It has a nice selection of free downloadable eBooks, and you can even check out your pet's horoscope.

Pets On The Go For the international jet-setting canine or feline, Pets On The Go offers independent reviews of hotels, inns, timeshares and other properties where pets are welcome. There's tons of tips for traveling with your pets. The free area has many resources; paid membership gives you access to even more.

You can view regulations and guidelines for over 100 countries and all 50 states, as well as guidelines for specific airlines and cruise lines. The cost is nominal - you get a 30-day trial membership for $5, or a full year for $15. Be sure to check out the travel boutique for innovative products so you can take your friend on the road, in the air or on the water.

Vet Locator Do you know what to do if your pet has an accident or a medical emergency? Vet Locator's quick and easy search feature finds emergency clinics in your area. You can also read up on how to provide basic first aid for your pet, and even how to perform pet CPR.

The site also locates vets who make house calls and vets who practice holistic and alternative treatments. Need other pet professionals? Vet Locator can help you find a variety of professionals in your area: breeders, groomers, trainers, pet photographers, daycares and pet sitters.

Healthy Pet Sponsored by the American Animal Hospital Association, this site is exceptionally easy to navigate, with larger fonts and a straightforward layout. The AAHA is the only accrediting agency for animal hospitals; it helps you locate accredited facilities in your area. It includes tips on how to select an animal hospital. The pet care library is extensive but easy to navigate, and the entire site is searchable.

Pets Sponsored by Petsmart, this is a truly excellent site for first-time pet owners; its focus is to make you the best pet parent you can be. Includes articles about choosing the right pet for your family, picking a name, and new pet checklists to consult before you bring your baby home. There is a handy, printable heath and vaccination chart for either cats or dogs.

Join the online community for discussion and learn all you need to know before you make the commitment to your new friend. If you still have questions, you can post to the "ask an expert" feature, where your concerns are answered by a qualified pet professional.

That Pet Place You will find a huge variety of products at That Pet Place; the prices are excellent, but if you find a lower price, That Pet Place will match it. One of the very best sites for aquariums and fish supplies. Browse a huge variety of life fish, crabs, shrimp, and other stock for your fresh or salt water tank. The pet information center has detailed pet care profiles for many different species, including exotics. This is a great site for hard-to-find items, and it also has a good selection of gift items for the pet lover.

Zoo Too If you want the scoop on your local vet or groomer, visit Zoo Too. This online community of pet owners will provide you with reviews of local services, as well as dates and times for spay, neuter, and vaccine clinics being held in your area. Create a profile and connect with others in your own neighborhood or around the country. This site also features pets in the news - stories of rescues, issues and legislation affecting pets in the mainstream media.

Catster and Dogster These two affiliate sites are devoted to the cat and dog lover respectively. They are both fun, lively sites that are structured identically - so it's easy to use both. Each of your pets can have his or her own profile page, where they can post photos, collect other feline or canine friends, give each other virtual treats and gifts, enter photo contests, and participate in a vibrant online community.

Both sites have exceptional care manual and detailed breed info, with breed-specific links to other users and forums within the site.

Cute Overload Acres of cuteness. Mountains of cuteness. Cuteness galore. Even the website graphics are, well, cute. This social networking site will keep you entertained for hours, even if you don't have pets! Funny videos, pics, and stories posted by an active, and interactive, community. The array of animals featured on this site is amazing.

Besides the expected array of funny domestic animals, you will also find some amazing shots of zoo, farm, and exotic animals. It's also easy to navigate - you can access the menu from every page.

Only Natural Pet Store Do you want your pet to go green? Looking for natural alternatives to harsh chemical flea sprays? Only Natural Pet Store offers a huge variety of holistic, organic, and all-natural food and supplies for your cat or dog. This site offers thousands of products from food and supplements to toys and beds.

This BBB accredited business offers terrific products for the eco-conscious pet owner.