Posted on Leave a comment

Christmas and your pets

christmas dog

christmas dogTo start, are poinsettias poisonous to cats?

During the holiday season many pet owners like to decorate their houses with the beautiful red flowering Christmas plant… the poinsettia. However, according to poison control centers the poinsettia IS mildly poisonous to cats AND DOGS! The milky white sap from the plants contains chemicals that can cause mild vomiting, excessive drooling, and sometimes diarrhea in our four legged friends. Unfortunately, there is no antidote to the poison in a poinsettia. No reason to worry, according to sources the low level of toxicity of the plant rarely requires medical treatment.

Chewing Christmas light? Will my puppy get shocked?

In a short answer….YES. Please keep all pets away from Christmas lights and always watch your children as well. If you notice that you have a string of lights that has been chewed you are going to want to replace that set of lights to prevent a fire or shock to you or your pets.

Thanks for reading and as always make sure that your pets have updated pet id tags!

Posted on Leave a comment

Even More Pet Facts

Cute Puppy

The Canary Islands were not named for a bird called a canary. They were named after a breed of large dogs. The Latin name was Canariae insulae – “Island of Dogs.”

The first seeing-eye dog was presented to a blind person on April 25, 1938

The phrase “raining cats and dogs” originated in 17th Century England. During heavy downpours of rain, many of these poor animals unfortunately drowned and their bodies would be seen floating in the rain torrents that raced through the streets. The situation gave the appearance that it had literally rained “cats and dogs” and led to the current expression

The term “dog days” has nothing to do with dogs. It dates back to Roman times, when it was believed that Sirius, the Dog Star, added its heat to that of the sun from July3 to August 11, creating exceptionally high temperatures. The Romans called the period dies caniculares, or “days of the dog

Overnight Pet Tags is the industry leader in top quality pet id tags

There are 701 types of pure breed dogs

Though human noses have an impressive 5 million olfactory cells with which to smell, sheepdogs have 220 million, enabling them to smell 44 times better than man.

Using their swiveling ears like radar dishes, experiments have shown that dogs can locate the source of a sound in 6/100ths of a second

Posted on Leave a comment

More Pet Facts

Dog with glasses

Dogs can hear sounds that are too faint for us to hear, and also can hear noises at a much higher frequency than we can. Their hearing is so good that they probably rely more on sound than on sight to navigate their world

Dogs have far fewer taste buds than people — probably fewer than 2,000. It is the smell that initially attracts them to a particular food

Dogs may not have as many taste buds as we do (they have about 1,700 on their tongues, while we humans have about 9,000), but that doesn’t mean they’re not discriminating eaters. They have over 200 million scent receptors in their noses (we have only 5 million) so it’s important that their food smells good as well as tastes good

Dogs in monuments: The dog is placed at the feet of women in monuments to symbolize affection and fidelity, as a lion is placed at the feet of men to signify courage and magnanimity. Many of the Crusaders are represented with their feet on a dog, to show that they followed the standard of the Lord as faithfully as a dog follows the footsteps of his master

Every year, $1.5 billion is spent on pet food. This is four times the amount spent on baby food

French poodles did not originate in France. Poodles were originally used as hunting dogs in Europe. The dogs’ thick coats were a hindrance in water and thick brush, so hunters sheared the hindquarters, with cuffs left around the ankles and hips to protect against rheumatism. Each hunter marked his dogs’ heads with a ribbon of his own color, allowing groups of hunters to tell their dogs apart

It has been established that people who own pets live longer, have less stress, and have fewer heart attacks

Scientists have discovered that dogs can smell the presence of autism in children

‘Seizure Alert’ dogs can alert their owners up to an hour before the onset of an epileptic seizure

Seventy percent of people sign their pet’s name on greeting cards and 58 percent include their pets in family and holiday portraits, according to a survey done by the American Animal Hospital Association

Some 39 percent of pet owners say they have more photos of their pet than of their spouse or significant other. Only 21 percent say they have more photos of their spouse or significant other than of their pet.

90% of pets lost that are wearing pet id tags are returned to their owners.

Check back next week for more pet facts!

Posted on 1 Comment

Pet Facts

029eed259fade467b62f9ce7797d230f

Pet Facts

 

A dog’s whiskers are touch-sensitive hairs called vibrissae. They are found on the muzzle, above the eyes and below the jaws, and can actually sense tiny changes in airflow!

An American Animal Hospital Association poll showed that 33 percent of dog owners admit that they talk to their dogs on the phone or leave messages on an answering machine while away.

An estimated 1 million dogs in the United States have been named the primary beneficiary in their owner’s will

At the end of the Beatles’ song “A Day in the Life”, an ultrasonic whistle, audible only to dogs, was recorded by Paul McCartney for his Shetland sheepdog

Before the enactment of the 1978 law that made it mandatory for dog owners in New York City to clean up after their pets, approximately 40 million pounds of dog excrement were deposited on the streets every year

Cats have better memories than dogs. Tests conducted by the University of Michigan concluded that while a dogs memory lasts no more than 5 minutes, a cat’s can last as long as 16 hours – exceeding even that of monkeys and orangutans

Cats have more than one hundred vocal sounds, while dogs only have about ten

Cats, not dogs, are the most common pets in America. There are approximately 66 million cats to 58 million dogs, with Parakeets a distant third at 14 million

Dogs are mentioned 14 times in the Bible

Pet Tags are the cheapest way to protect your pets

Check back in a few days for even more pet facts!!

Posted on Leave a comment

Dog ear Infections

237c13d4bb48f48d7db3d0b6f7c5c64e_1273007755
Every dog has some bacteria and yeast in their ears. Sometimes this balance can be thrown off, which can lead to an ear infection. This over growth can be very uncomfortable and even painful for your dog. It can even lead to hearing loss if left untreated for too long. Your dogs ear infection can last anywhere from a couple days to a couple weeks. As always it is important to check with your vet for proper treatment.

If an ear infection is very severe your dog may yelp when it is touched or whine when itching his/her ear. Ear infections are easily treated if you know what you are looking for, I will try to give you the information to tell the difference between an ear infection, ear mites, or allergies.

Here are some symptoms to look for:

  • Discharge from the ears will usually be black or yellow and chunky, the discharge may even contain blood.
  • If you notice excessive scratching, rubbing, or shaking of the head. You may also notice head tilting.
  • Redness and swelling may be noticed in the inner ear flap or the ear canal.
  • You may notice an unusual or foul smelling odor coming from your pets ears.
  • Eye movements that seem abnormal from left to right (or right to left)

You may also notice your pet seeming off balance. Head shaking can cause tissue damage leading to blood-filled blisters.

Swimming, dogs with allergies, and dogs that grow hair in the inner ear are more prone to ear infections.

 

Signs it is ear mites or caused by allergies:

Mites may become present if an ear infection is present. Often times the two are confused because they have similar symptoms. It is important to treat ear mites right away because they attack the blood vessels in your dogs ears. If your dog has ear mites, keep your eyes open for mite feces or eggs. Ear mites are more common in puppies. The only way to be sure if it’s ear mites, is a trip to your vet.

Dogs may develop an ear infection due to allergies. If you notice your pet wheezing, sneezing, if they have watery eyes, or if you notice excessive itching it could be an allergy.

Ear infection medical treatments:

  • Otomax ear drops-treats acute and chronic ear infections
  • Cephalexin antibiotics-used for serious skin infections
  • Mometamax ear drops-Once a day infection treatment
  • Baytril Otic-treats outer ear infections
  • Mita-clear –used for ear mites

 

Home treatments:

  • Warm compress-apply the towel to the outside of the ear and press down for 30 seconds. Can be repeated a few times a day
  • Green Tea-steep a few bags in boiling water, cool completely, and use to flush ears twice a day, or use as a towel compress
  • Vinegar-mix one part white or apple cider vinegar and two parts warm water. Apply with a spray bottle (set on mist) or a warm cloth and dab dry. This can be done 2-4 times a week. Do not use this method with open sores.
  • Vitamin E Oil-Gently massage a few drops into the ear for 10-25 seconds.
  • Garlic Oil-Apply 2-3 drops and massage for 10-25 seconds. Garlic is a natural antibiotic.

 

These supplements may also help:

  • Probiotics
  • Enzymes
  • Fatty acids
  • Antioxidants

Please remember that although some of these may help, the best course of action is always to contact your vet.

Posted on 1 Comment

Dogs and Arthritis

old dog

old dog

 

It is always a sad experience to hear your beloved pet has arthritis. The good news is there are some ways you can make your pet more comfortable. The first step to understanding how to help your animal, is understanding what it is you are dealing with.

Arthritis is a painful yet common condition usually (as with people) in older dogs. It causes swelling of the joints. One in Five adult dogs are affected by arthritis. There are two types of arthritis in canines. These are known as degenerative and inflammatory. However the symptoms for both are basically identical.

Symptoms of canine arthritis:

Weight loss/gain- Your dog may lose or gain weight if they are suffering from arthritis. Depression is another symptom which may also cause your pet to eat more or less than normal.

Difficulty sitting/standing- If you notice your pet shifting a lot while laying down, or taking longer than normal to stand, this too could be caused by arthritis. It is very painful and can make it very difficult for your dog to get comfortable.

Hesitancy to climb stairs/jump or play- When suffering from arthritis you may notice your pet is no longer jumping on the couch/bed to sit or lie with you. He/she may also stand at the bottom of stairs and take a more zigzagged approach to climbing them. Some animals will refuse to climb them all together. You may also notice your pet less willing to play their favorite game, or take that evening walk than previous times. Even coming to get a treat may seem like it’s a chore for them.

Limping or favoring a limp- Of course this could mean they hurt themselves somehow and should never be disregarded. You may notice your pet first limping to baby one leg, then switching to baby another. If it is arthritis you will notice the lameness come and go, and often switch limbs.

Sleeping more than usual- You dog may sleep often to dull the pain he/she is in. Lethargy is a common symptom of arthritis.

Changes in mood- Your pet may all of a sudden stop listening when called and seem reluctant to move. He/she may become easily agitated and growl, whine, nip, or show his teeth when touched or forced into an activity. This is because of the pain so please try to be understanding. These aggressive behaviors are more likely to happen, to those who are not “his people”. Your pet may also become ill due to arthritis and you may notice a fever, or your pet may lick certain spots often trying to relieve the pain, these areas, when touched, may feel warmer due to the swelling.

There are a ton of supplements and even medications you can buy to help your animal. There is even the possibility your pet may need surgery to get relief, depending on the severity of the case. Contact your vet and they will be able to point you in the right direction of what is best for your pet.

Posted on 1 Comment

Dogs and Sunburn

dog at beach

dog swimming
Like us, dogs can suffer from sunburn. Long term exposure can result in skin damage and skin cancers just like in people.

Dogs that are susceptible to sunburn
• Any dog that spends lots of time in the sun during the hottest parts of the day;
• Dogs that have white or light colored hair;
• Dogs that have very short hair, or no hair at all;
• Dogs that have lost fur through allergies, hot spots or medical treatments.

What are the signs of sunburn?
• Red or inflamed skin; and/or
• Hair loss; and/or
• Skin sores;

What areas of the body are more prone to sunburn you ask?

Those parts with smaller finer or thinner amounts of hair specifically:
• The nose;
• Tips of the ears;
• Around the mouth and snout;
• Eyelids
• Your dog’s belly, groin and inside the legs; where there is usually very little or no hair at all. These areas are at even greater risk when your dog is on a reflective surface, such as walking on a black top or close to water.

How do I prevent dog sunburn?
• Keep your dog inside, in a cool room, or if he’s a outside pet, in an adequately covered shelter during the hottest parts of the day;
• Use an animal safe sunscreen on those parts of his body more susceptible to sunburn
• If you regularly groom your dog in the summer, think about leaving the coat a little bit longer so the hair may offer some protection. Be sure to talk to your groomer about your dogs coat, sometimes the hair is a certain length specifically to protect your dog from the sun and you do not want to do more harm than good.

Posted on Leave a comment

Pregnancy and Toxoplasmosis

preggers and cat

preggers and cat
A lot of cat owners hear about this, your doctor told you about it, or a close friend, but sometimes you are not given all of the information. The sad fact is, some cat owners will even take their beloved pet to a shelter thinking they have no choice. I will do my best to explain what exactly Toxoplasmosis is and what it can do to you and your unborn child, as well as ways to avoid it.

Toxoplasmosis is a parasite that can affect cats and, if passed on to pregnant women, can cause the fetus to be miscarried, or be born afflicted with hydrocephalus, seizures, or mental disabilities. While this sounds quite terrifying, experts in parasitological science and public health agree, there is no reason for you to give kitty away to avoid infection.

There are simple steps a woman can take to avoid infection. The possibility of transmission of this parasite from an indoor cat to its pregnant owner is very unlikely. Any animal or bird can harbor this parasite. In fact about 50% of human adults have already been infected at some point in their lives without even knowing it. Animals become infected by eating prey, so an indoor cat that is fed commercial cat food, should not be a source of toxoplasmosis at all.

Owners get this infection by somehow ingesting the eggs of the parasite. The eggs are shed in the feces for 3-5 days, beginning 3-24 days after the animal contracted the infection. Basically if your cat should get this infection the chances of you contracting it from the feces are slim and limited to a month after your pet became infected. In addition to that, the eggs are not active until after the initial 24 hour period, so if ingested by an animal or human, which happens when you cat walks on furniture, counters ect. , in that time frame, there is no risk of infection. Gross I know. Bear with me here. This means if a pregnant woman wears gloves or has someone else clean the litter box every day, the chances of contacting toxoplasmosis are pretty much nonexistent.

Now that we fixed the problem with kitty, here are some other steps pregnant women need to take, to avoid getting toxoplasmosis from other sources. Raw and undercooked meats, as well as raw vegetables are common sources of this infection. Be sure to cook all meat to 151 degree Fahrenheit. Also hands and utensils that come in contact with raw meat should be washed thoroughly. Wash all vegetables thoroughly and wear gloves when gardening. Sandboxes should be kept covered due to stray or neighborhood cats.

The chances of contracting Toxoplasmosis from raw vegetables or undercooked meat are far greater than the chances of getting it from your kitty. By taking just a few precautions the health of all family members, including your pet, can be protected.

And always remember:

Keep you cats indoors

Feed your pet commercial cat food

Scoop the litter box daily wearing disposable gloves, or let someone else do it

Avoid undercooked meat and unwashed vegetables

Avoid materials that could be contaminated by outdoor cats. (Wear gloves when gardening, cover the sandbox ect.)

Posted on Leave a comment

Pet Facts

Pet Facts

A dog’s whiskers are touch-sensitive hairs called vibrissae. They are found on the muzzle, above the eyes and below the jaws, and can actually sense tiny changes in airflow!

An American Animal Hospital Association poll showed that 33 percent of dog owners admit that they talk to their dogs on the phone or leave messages on an answering machine while away.

An estimated 1 million dogs in the United States have been named the primary beneficiary in their owner’s will

At the end of the Beatles’ song “A Day in the Life”, an ultrasonic whistle, audible only to dogs, was recorded by Paul McCartney for his Shetland sheepdog

Before the enactment of the 1978 law that made it mandatory for dog owners in New York City to clean up after their pets, approximately 40 million pounds of dog excrement were deposited on the streets every year

Cats have better memories than dogs. Tests conducted by the University of Michigan concluded that while a dogs memory lasts no more than 5 minutes, a cat’s can last as long as 16 hours – exceeding even that of monkeys and orangutans

Cats have more than one hundred vocal sounds, while dogs only have about ten

Cats, not dogs, are the most common pets in America. There are approximately 66 million cats to 58 million dogs, with Parakeets a distant third at 14 million

Dogs are mentioned 14 times in the Bible

Pet Tags are the cheapest way to protect your pets

Check back often for even more pet facts!!