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Comfort for Critters

~ Celebrating 13 Years & 100,000+ FREE Pet Blankets ~

Helping our pets AND all those we can't adopt!

This blog is dedicated to everyone who wants to improve the lives of their own pets AND all those pets they can't adopt (but would like to)!  Of course making blankets to comfort homeless pets is a great start, but it's only a start. We hope to provide more projects, ideas and tips on ways to make each pet's corner of the world a bit brighter!

Attracting Butterflies to Your Yard

Spring and Summer can be wonderful times of renewal. Plants which have withered to nothingness, burst forth with life and beauty. There’s nothing like it, and it makes enduring a Midwest winter almost worth it. Almost.

One delight, which makes the high temperatures bearable is the return of the…

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Finding your joy in blankets!?

This has certainly been a summer like no other! I’ve found myself with more time, but less motivation than in any time I can remember. To challenge this malaise, I’ve found I have to turn off the news and actively seek out joy. Of course with the pandemic and riots keeping me safely inside my home, …

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Crafting to cut stress

I’ve been busy creating more crochet patterns for pet blankets and researching the topic of “stress-mitigation”, in preparation for my next e-book. I began this research at the end of last year, not knowing how applicable it would be in 2020. One of the many blessings of CFC, which I never anticipat…

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Let Your Pets Help

As any pet-parent will tell you, when a pet enters your life, it’s never the same - and that’s a good thing. It’s a hard thing to explain to someone who has never experienced life with a four-footed friend. During this current crisis, I know I have appreciated my pets even more! I’ve heard this over…

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"The Granny" is the Ultimate in Crochet!

The Granny Square is the first pattern I learned as a girl of 10 years old. It’s remained one of my favorites for that very reason. For me, it’s a “must” for anyone who really wants to embrace the “crochet life”. As I’ve explored other patterns, I’ve found this wonderful stitch can be used in a vari…

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The History of Animal Sheltering

I just love delving into the history of caring for animals, to learn how the treatment of pets has improved so dramatically over the years. It’s inspiring to read about the people along the way, who carved a path, where there truly was none. This is the story of today’s animal shelter.

The hi…

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Help Support pet food banks

I know CFC volunteers and supporters are always on the lookout for other ways to help all those pets which they can’t adopt. One wonderful opportunity is to help feed the pets of families who may be struggling a bit financially.

By helping these individuals and families feed their pets, you are…

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Wabi-Sabi

Every so often people will question my logic in giving beautifully crafted blankets to pets who will likely knead them, chew them a bit and have the occasional “accident” (poop-happens, after all). They warn me that our creations will look worn and ragged in no time. Of course my short reply is, “b…

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“Heal” Boosts Hope for a Cure

I fell in love with dogs the first time one surprised me with a lick of my face. I fell a little bit more after reading this book. Didn’t think that was possible.

“Heal: The Vital Role of Dogs in the Search for Cancer Cures” by Arlene Weintraub is an amazing journey into the science, art and im…

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The Blessing of the Animals

I was fortunate enough to be invited to a blessing of the animals at a friend’s church, a few years ago. Though a lifelong Christian, I had never even heard of this ceremony, which in itself is wonderfully simple.

It’s conducted in memory of St. Francis of Assisi’s love for all creatures. This …

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Foster Care Heroes

Comfort for Critters loves to support any group that is working to improve the lives of companion animals. Often these are animal shelters, but sometimes they are not “shelters” at all, but simply a group of private homes, which together create a foster-care system. These typically start with a real…

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Ten Great Reasons to Adopt an Older Pet

The idea of a newborn puppy in your arms is irresistible. A pile of cuteness, with two ears and tail. But if you can look beyond those oversized eyes, you may see some great reasons to put the puppy down and give the older dog (the one in the back) another look.

There are many great reasons to co…

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Adopt Your Local Shelter

As we add more and more shelters, I continue to encourage volunteers to donate their blankets locally, rather than sending their blankets to me. This obviously helps keep my huge postage bill manageable, but it also brings many other benefits.

With this in mind, I’m grateful that some volunteers …

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The Do's and Don'ts of Blanket Making

When I started CFC in 2007, the only blankets I made were crocheted ones, about 20” x 20”. These fit the most enclosures at the two shelters we initially supported and crocheting pretty much maxed-out my creativity. I was also only creating about 100 blankets a year! Now that we have so many creativ…

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Lessons from our Pets - Part 2!

My humble list continues with many more lessons I’ve learned, sometimes the hard way, from my pets. I’ve cared for just about every type of pet you can imagine, and have learned and enjoyed every minute along the way. Well, for most of those minutes! See if you don’t agree with learning about true b…

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Lessons from our Pets - Part 1!

As I tell my kids all the time, life is all about learning. Learning what works, learning what to never, ever do again. We learn a bit from our success, but far more from our painful failures. Maybe it just helps me deal with the wrinkles and expanding waistline, but I consider myself far wiser with…

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Knitting as Espionage

As we create our blankets, I’m sure many of us send quiet, prayerful messages to the pets who will receive them. I’ve recently learned that knitting has been used to send other types of messages, equally important. There is a long history between knitting and espionage, in two distinct ways. Knittin…

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The Blessing of Blankets

I am always so personally touched when I get to interact with CFC volunteers. The concern over the perfect blanket size, softest yarn to use and ensuring a box has made it safely to me, reveals the heart of the person. I’m always impressed. I’ve also heard from numerous volunteers that they pray for…

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Helping One More Starfish...

Embracing one’s own Tikkun Olam, or act of kindness to improve the world, can be a daunting challenge. It has to wedge itself between jobs, kids, pets, life. I seldom come across anyone with time to spare. More often I see people multi-tasking to the breaking point. Or maybe that’s just me.

Des…

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Have you found your Tikkun Olam?

I’ve recently come across the Jewish concept of Tikkun Olam, and it’s hard to believe that in over half a century this idea has not crossed my path. It describes acts of kindness designed to improve, perfect or even repair the world. It’s often applied to issues that help protect those that are at a…

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Stressed? Knit or crochet your way to relaxation...

Can we really knit or crochet our way to relaxation? Yes, it’s true. Studies have shown, and all of us crafters know, that knitting and crocheting can be a huge stress reliever. I’ve personally heard this from many volunteers…that it’s a way for them to relax and unwind after a long day. But is this…

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Compassion Fatigue

I’ve always regarded animal shelter workers as some of the best people around. It’s one of the many reasons I’m so thrilled to send blankets out to shelters. These individuals love seeing our creations and then “matching” them to the best pet. They truly care for the cats and dogs as if they were th…

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Easy Steps to Stop Litter Tracking

While we love to give our kitties the run of the house, we often don’t want them to bring their kitty litter along. Tracking litter out of the litterbox is often unavoidable for them. As their human companions it’s up to us to minimize it, as much as possible. There are a handful of simple and easy …

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Pets: Our Companions in Depression

Depression is a silent disease that remains the leading cause of disability in the US*. Until it came to visit my own home, I didn’t give it much thought. It affects over 16 million adults in the US, or 6.7% of the US population. I have seen first-hand the positive role pets can play in this illness…

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Understanding TNR: Trap-Neuter-Return

The issue of pet overpopulation is not just visible in the hundreds of animal shelters across the US, but also in the millions of community cats which live short lives in this country. CFC blankets are only provided to animal shelters and foster care systems, but understanding TNR programs (a close …

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How to Grow, Harvest & Store Catnip

If you live with a kitty who just loves catnip, it can be expensive to keep up! Even a small bag at a pet store can be $5 or more, and it doesn’t last long. Another solution is to grow your own catnip, from just a handful of seeds. A one-time small investment can pay off year after year. It’…

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Pets Enhance our Humanity

I firmly believe pets make us more human, which is to say they make us better people. Maybe it’s just me, but given the animal shelters which struggle across the US and the pet store aisles filled with treats and toys, I have the feeling I’m not alone.

As a Christian I worship a God which I s…

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Make a Mattress Blanket!

A great thing about making pet blankets is that they are fun and quick to make! You’ll be done before you get tired of the stitch or the color! It’s also a great time to try out a new stitch, to see how you like it for other projects. Some of the best, and most unique crochet stitches for blankets a…

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CFC Wants YOUR ideas!

I love to see the creativity of our volunteers, shown in the blankets they make for shelter pets. I am inspired daily by the volunteers’ blankets and want to share their ideas, just as often as I can! If you have a unique idea for making a pet blanket, please consider sharing it with me, so t…

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Cats & Dehydration – What you should know!

Water makes up 80% of your kitty’s body and when its volume gets out of balance it can severely affect their overall health. Since cats in the wild are carnivorous in nature, most of their water intake comes from the prey they eat. For this reason, they’ve developed a low thirst drive and can become…

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Another Way Dogs Save Lives

If you’ve ever donated blood, you understand just how easy it is and how life-saving it can be. Did you know your dog can donate too? There is a constant need for canine blood, for the same reasons human blood is such a precious commodity. It’s used to help sick and injured dogs, and can save a life…

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Knitting & Crochet World Records!

(World's largest crocheted blanket)

At CFC we’ve set many goals for ourselves, from 100 blankets made in 2007 (our first year) to shipping 1,000 blankets in one month (reached last July when we gave away 1,161 blankets in one month).  We’ve been fortunate enough to reach every goal we’ve set!…

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Rats Make Great Pets. Really!

The Fancy Rat is the most common type of pet rat in the US. It's actually a domesticated brown rat, but gets the name "Fancy" (as in "to fancy") since it is so likeable. Still with me?

These critters are physiologically and psychologically quite different from their wild relatives, and have been …

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Dogs & Chocolate – No Amount is Safe!

Americans consume 18% of the world’s chocolate, so most households will stock at least some of this sweet. Homes with dogs however, need to be extra careful about stocking up on this favorite treat! Experts agree that there’s no “safe” amount of chocolate for a dog to consume, though the consequence…

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Make Your Dog's Old Toys - New Again!

If you think your dog’s attention span for new toys is measured in minutes, you’re right. On average, dogs lose interest in a new toy after 2-3 minutes of play. Of course some toys become “favorites”, but too many of them end up under the couch or off in a corner, forgotten.

There are way…

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De-Skunking Your Pet!

For many of us, evening walks with the pup are one of life’s greatest joys. Smelling the distinctive odor of a skunk, clearly is not! Fear of being sprayed by a skunk should not keep you, or your dog, stuck inside at dusk (when skunks are most active). It’s rarely dangerous, and if you’re prepared, …

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HABRI - An organization you should know!

HABRI stands for Human Animal Bond Research Institute and it’s one of my favorite websites to check out when I have a bit of extra time for reading. They are a non-profit research and education organization that shares, and often funds, scientific research that shows the positive impact pets have on…

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Feed Pets & Help People!

I know CFC volunteers and supporters are always on the lookout for other ways to help all those pets which they can’t adopt. One wonderful opportunity is to help feed the pets of families who may be struggling a bit financially.

By helping these individuals and families feed their pets, you are…

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10 Ways to Make Your Pet's Life Better!

Pet parents are always looking for fun new ways to make their pet’s life just a bit better. A great place to start is by adopting rather than shopping! Shelters are filled with adorable and sweet pets, just looking for a family to love, who will love them back. Maybe a companion for your pet would b…

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How to Know if Your Cat is in Pain

One of the most frustrating experiences in any pet parent’s life is when they think, or find out, their cat is in pain. Sometimes pain is suspected, due to an injury or recent surgery. Other times it’s a complete surprise, happening when the veterinarian notices a condition that is surely causing pa…

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The Special World of Helping Pets

The population inside animal shelters is not limited to just cats and dogs. Although these pets make up the majority of the residents, many shelters take in other domestic pets, including rabbits, guinea pigs, ferrets and even fancy rats. As we support these shelters, we also support all sorts of “c…

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Can I Trust a Wagging Tail?

One of the most misunderstood aspects of dogs is their wagging tail. It’s a common belief that a dog with a wagging tail is a “happy dog”, but that’s not entirely true. A wagging tail can mean “stay away” as easily as it means “come on over!” Not knowing how to correctly interpret this aspect of can…

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Yarn Therapy!?

Comfort for Critters was created to help animal shelter pets, and clearly this remains our overriding mission. As a goal, it doesn’t get much simpler, and hasn’t changed a bit since the first blanket was stitched in 2007. We endeavor to comfort all the pets we can’t adopt (but would like to!).

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Canine Cellmates - A second chance at life!

Canine CellMates is one of those win-win organizations we love to hear about.*  This program was started in 2013, by Susan Jacobs-Meadows, an Army veteran and dog-lover who seems to always see what's possible. It operates at the Fulton County Jail in Atlanta, Georgia and rescues shelter dogs from th…

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T-Shirts Can Make Great Blankets!!!

This idea came from two different volunteers, both giving it a try in completely separate parts of the country at the same time. They created nice and thick, soft and sturdy pet blankets using old t-shirts!

Connie J., a volunteer in Florida, starts with 6-8 old t-shirts (the size of the shirt wil…

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For a New Idea … Try Patchwork Blankets!

Looking for a fun idea to spice up your blankets? Interested in trying something new? Here’s another twist to try, as we ratchet up our creativity for 2017. This idea comes from Jennifer B. of Cicero, IL. She made the blankets pictured and they are true beauties.

This is also a great way to com…

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Simple Trick to Make Super-Thick Blankets!

Pets love blankets, and often the thicker the better! Shelters also love blankets, and the more colorful the better! Here’s an idea to make your pet blankets super-thick and quite colorful too. This is especially a good idea when all you have to work with is thin yarn. However, it also works well ev…

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Photographing Black Pets in their Best Light!

One important way to combat “Black Pet Syndrome”* is to be loud and proud about the black cats and dogs which share our home. Posting pictures of your beautiful black kitty on Facebook, or Tweeting out shots of your black Lab are great ideas, with one problem - black pets are some of the most diffic…

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Ferrets Love Toys - You'll Love Making Them!

Ferrets are wonderful pets and from what I hear, they are addicting. Start with one or two and you’re sure to adopt more! One of the reasons for this is their extreme playfulness. Few things in life are more fun than watching a group of ferrets romp around together, chasing each other and their huma…

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Support Kill or No-Kill Shelters? Not such as easy question!

As recently as 30 years ago, 17 million pets were euthanized each year in animal shelters. This common practice was done simply to control the pet population. About 20 years ago, the “no-kill” movement began in San Francisco, California. This community committed to finding a home for every pet that …

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PLEASE support our mission to help homeless pets with a purchase of our "Crochet for Critters" e-book of crochet patterns, an inspiring T-shirt or a handmade blanket for your own pet!

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If you would like to see a full list of all the shelters we support in your state, please see our "Animal Shelters We Support" page. There may be one that is close enough for you to just drop them off! There is a link to each shelter's website, to get their full address.