Natural Remedies for Pets: Tips for Pet Owners

3 Reasons To Get Your Female Puppy Spayed

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Getting a new puppy is exciting, but if you get a female puppy, you will have decide whether to spay her before she begins her heat cycles. While it can be sad to think about your new family member having a surgery at a young age, there are many spaying offers many advantages to female dogs. Some of the biggest benefits of spaying include: Avoiding the Hassle of Heat Cycles A female dog who is not spayed will have heat cycles, which indicate that a dog is currently fertile. There can be many unpleasant side effects of a heat cycle, such as bloody discharge that can stain your carpet and furniture and your dog may have  negative temperament changes during this time. In addition, you will have to closely monitor your dog when outside, as non-spayed female dogs tend to try to escape when they are in heat, and you can end up with a pup that is expecting a litter of puppies. Preventing Unwanted Litters of Puppies While some people specifically get dogs for breeding purposes, most people just want a single pet to love and care for. If you don’t get your female dog spayed, there is always the chance that she could get pregnant and have a litter of puppies that you are not able to afford or help care for. Pregnant dogs may also require additional vet care, which can be a strain on your budget if you’re not expecting it. It is possible to place the puppies in new homes, but new puppies need to stay with their mother for several weeks and also receive vet care– if you are not prepared for all of the responsibilities that come with a pregnant dog and a litter of puppies, it is best to contact your local animal hospital and have your dog spayed. Keeping Your Dog Healthy Un-spayed dogs may experience higher incidences of dangerous uterine infections and breast and ovarian cancer. If you have absolutely no intention of every breeding your dog, having her spayed is a small financial investment in something that can help protect her health for the rest of her life. Spaying is typically a short surgery, and healthy young dogs and puppies usually have a short recovery period. If you choose to get your new female puppy spayed, it won’t take long for her to get back to being her cheerful, happy self. For more information, contact a company like Bayside Veterinary...

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Mercury Rising: How To Tell If Your Cat Has A Fever

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A fever occurs when your cat’s body temperature rises above the normal range in an immune response to infection, traumatic injury and certain diseases. Fever should always be considered a sign of illness. Taking your cat’s temperature and observing for additional symptoms will determine how urgently your cat needs to get to the animal hospital for treatment. Signs of a Fever If your kitty is under the weather, you may observe the following signs of a potential fever: Lethargy Decrease in, or lack of, appetite Decrease in water intake Breathing more rapidly than usual Depending on the cause of the fever, she may also exhibit symptoms of the underlying illness. In some cases, the source of the fever is never determined. Such cases are diagnosed as fevers of unknown origin. The Nose Does Not Know Contrary to the old wives’ tale, a warm, dry nose is not indicative of a fever in your cat. Whether your cat’s nose is warm, cold, dry or wet depends primarily on where her nose has been. Feeling your cat’s outer ear can serve as a slightly better potential fever detector, but since your cat’s normal body temperature range exceeds your own, your cat may always feel warm to your touch. Although your cat is not likely to appreciate the violation, the only accurate method for assessing your cat’s temperature is to employ a thermometer. Taking Her Temperature Once you are armed with a digital rectal thermometer that has been lubricated with petroleum jelly, grab a partner. One of you should assume the task of restraining your kitty while the other takes her temperature. Gently lift your cat’s tail and insert the thermometer into the rectum. Once it has been inserted, hold the thermometer in place until it beeps. While the thermometer is reading, both of you should speak to the cat in reassuring tones. As soon as the thermometer beeps, extract it from your cat’s rectum and release her. If she has not been vomiting, you can hand over a treat as a peace offering. Do not be surprised if she declines and instead darts into hiding to brood and to tend to her wounded pride. Feverish Figures The normal perfect temperature for a cat is 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit. Just as individual humans can normally run a slightly higher or lower temperature than the designated normal 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit, cats can also span a range that is considered within normal limits. If your cat’s temperature falls between 100.5 and 102.5, then her temperature is normal. If her temperature registers 103.5 or higher, then you have confirmed that she has a fever, and a visit to the veterinarian as soon as possible is warranted. A fever is considered dangerously high when your cat’s temperature exceeds 104.0 degrees Fahrenheit, and you must consider this an emergency. Treatment Plan You may turn to your own medicine cabinet in attempts to reduce a fever when you or your loved ones are sick, but avoid the aspirin, ibuprofen and acetaminophen when caring for your cat. These drugs are highly toxic to cats. Once the cause of your cat’s fever is determined, treatment will be primarily targeted at resolving the cause. Additionally, your veterinarian may prescribe antibiotic therapy, rest, rehydration and symptomatic treatment as needed. If you’re looking for an...

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Busting Stress: 3 Tips To Help Avoid Canine Stress

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Dogs get stressed just like humans. And, just as there are ways to reduce the potential of stress in human lives, the same is true with dogs. Here are a few ways you can help avoid stressing out your furry friend: 1. Don’t Mess With Their Routine. Believe it or not, your dog’s normal routine has a lot to do with keeping it stress-free. Under all circumstances, you should never disrupt your dog’s usual routine. If your dog is used to being fed the moment you get home from school or work, then don’t delay your dog’s dinner. If your dog is used to accompanying you on your morning run, stick to that every day. A simple change in their routine can result in unnecessary canine stress. 2. Do Play Some Classical Tunes. According to one study, it appears that classical music may be able to reduce stress and anxiety levels in your four-legged friend. Classical music was found to be more effective in reducing stress in canines than other music that was specifically designed to calm them. In the study, the dogs were exposed to three different types of music for 45 minutes. Each dog’s behavior was recorded at five-minute intervals. Heavy metal resulted in more unrest in dogs, while classical music stole the show with a far more relaxed behavior. 3. Don’t Forget to Incorporate Play Time. As a dog owner, you are able to reduce the stress that your pet is under by simply playing with them. According to scientific research, human contact with dogs can significantly lower the dog’s stress levels. This is because human contact helps to keep them calm. The study examined shelter dogs, some of which were taken from the kennels for human interaction for 45 minutes a day and the others were left in their cages or runs with no interaction with humans. Over time, it was determined that the human-contact group of dogs had less cortisol hormone in their saliva. A separate study was conducted and found that 25 minutes of human contact and exercise each day improved the dog’s scores on behavior testing. Give Your Veterinarian a Call When in Doubt. If you believe your dog may be suffering from severe stress, or you are unsure whether the behavior that your dog is exhibiting is stress-related, consult with a veterinarian immediately. He or she will be able to assess your dog’s behavior and successfully determine if the problem is stress or something else.  For emergency vet services, contact a facility such as Animal House Veterinary...

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Keeping Cats Safe During The Holiday Season

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When it becomes time to decorate for the holidays, safety should be an issue when pets are involved. Cat are curious animals that can become injured when investigating some of the decor that may be used to spread festivity in your home. Here are some precautionary steps to take when decorating for the holidays if you own a cat in an attempt to keep them safe from harm. Keep Poinsettias Away Poinsettias are a known holiday plant that many find to be cheerful and appropriate for the season. While these plants look nice arranged with other holiday decor, they can be extremely harmful to cats. Cats tend to chew on any type of plant that is placed in a home. If they are unaccustomed to having vegetation in the home at all, then a poinsettia will be extremely intriguing if one were to be brought inside. These plants are poisonous and can kill a cat if the leaves are ingested. Opt for a fake poinsettia if you feel you must have one in a home that has a cat living inside. If your cat has ingested a poinsettia, take your cat to an emergency animal hospital right away.  Secure The Tree If you put up a Christmas tree for the holidays, it is a good idea to make sure it is secured to the wall so it cannot be knocked down. Cats like climbing these trees, especially if they are not allowed outdoors. If you purchase a real tree over putting up an artificial one, your cat may be even more intrigued. Screw an eye hook fastener to your wall. Tie a piece of twine around the tree and loop it through the fastener and tie in a knot. Your tree will be held in place so a climbing cat will be less likely to become injured. The tree will not be able to fall on the cat, making their climbing a bit less of a risk. Ditch Dangerous Ornaments Glass ornaments are dangerous to cats. A cat may bat at an ornament with its paw, causing it to fall off the tree and shatter. Use plastic ornaments to avoid this altogether. Tinsel can become wrapped around a cat’s tongue or wadded up in their intestines, causing a blockage. Use thick garland on a tree as an alternative shiny decoration. When placing lights on a tree, make sure they are at a higher level than the cat so your pet will be less likely to try biting on the wires. When the lights are plugged in, keep the cat in another room to avoid a wire biting incident which may lead to...

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6 Ways a Spay and Neuter Clinic Can Help Your Pets Health and Behavior

Posted by on 10:36 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 6 Ways a Spay and Neuter Clinic Can Help Your Pets Health and Behavior

You already know that a trip to the spay and neuter clinic means that you won’t be a pet parents many, many times over. It’s no big secret that spaying and neutering animals keeps the pet population down and means that there won’t be a new litter of kittens or puppies in your household’s future. But, what else does spaying/neutering offer your pet? Reproductive health. Animals that aren’t spayed can develop uterine cancer, reproductive tract cancers and uterine infections, according to the Humane Society of the United States. Spay your cat or dog and you’re helping to remove this risk. Spraying and marking. That no-so-subtle smell in your home may be the result of unaltered animal. Without a visit to the spay and neuter clinic, your pet may begin to mark his territory. This doesn’t just mean spraying on the trees in your backyard or on the border of your lawn. This can also include your couch, front door, or anywhere else that he views as his territory. Spaying your pet is likely to solve this problem and keep him from spraying. Breast cancer. This isn’t just a human disease. Spaying your pet early on in her life reduces the risk of eventually developing this type of cancer, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Prostate problems. The AVMA also notes that neutering your male dog or cat can lower the chance of prostate issues such as prostatic hyperplasia (also known as enlarged prostate gland). Better behavior. In some cases neutering your male pet may solve aggression problems. While this surgical procedure doesn’t always fix serious behavioral issues in every do, it may soften his temperament. Less roaming. Your unaltered animal is out and on the hunt for a mate. Kitty is rushing out the door at every chance possible and your pooch is suddenly jumping the fence. What gives? Your pet is ready to reproduce and is on the search for a mate. Spaying/neutering reduces this urge and keeps your cat or dog from going on the hunt. From cutting down on health risks to curbing unwanted or challenging behaviors, spaying or neutering your pet provides a bounty of benefits. Along with curbing animal overpopulation in your community, visiting the clinic means that your furry friend can enjoy a longer life without the risk of certain cancers or the threat of getting lost during a roam away from home. For more information, talk to a professional like Fischer Animal...

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Two Tips To Help You Find A Good Pet Groomer

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If you’re one of the many people who consider your pet to be a beloved member of the family, you are probably highly concerned about finding the right groomer for them.  You place a great deal of trust in a pet groomer because they are charged with the task of washing your pet and cutting your pet’s hair with sharp objects.  You want a groomer that you can feel comfortable leaving your pet with for several hours at a time.  Use these tips to help guide you to the right pet groomer. Always Aim For Cleanliness One of the most important things you should look for when seeking out a groomer is cleanliness.  The last thing you need is for your pet to catch some sort of ailment because your groomer was negligent with cleaning responsibilities. During your search, ask any potential groomers if you can be allowed into the back quarters of their facility in order to get a bird’s eye view of the place where your dog will be held and groomed.  Be sure to wear white shoes during this tour so that you’ll be able to see any small, black fleas that may indicate a lack of cleanliness.  Be sure to check the holding cages as well, since this is the area where your pet will spend most of its time while it waits to be groomed.  Make sure there is plenty of clean water in the cage, and if your pet will be fed while it stays at the groomers, check out the food bins to make sure that they are clean as well. Membership In An Organization Is A Good Sign Because pet groomers can practice their craft without a license, you won’t be able to demand that a prospective groomer show you their certification.  However, choosing a pet groomer who is a member of a grooming organization is a good sign.  It shows that the individual is serious about staying on top of the latest tips and tricks in the pet grooming industry.  Some organizations also require that members agree to adhere to strict grooming rules or risk losing their memberships.  Groomers who are in these organizations will likely go the extra mile to make sure that your pet is groomed with the highest degree of care. Finding a good pet groomer doesn’t have to be difficult if you know what to do.  The next time you’re in the market for a groomer, use these tips so you can make the right selection. Contact a clinic like Rush Animal Care Clinic PC for more...

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Using A Holistic Approach In Relieving Your Cat’s Depression

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If your cat is suffering from depression, you may have thought about enlisting help from a holistic veterinarian. Veterinarians that take a holistic approach at providing service will treat your cat using an open-mind and by incorporating new treatments in relieving your pet’s symptoms. They will often use these newer methods in treatment in tandem with traditional methods. Here are a few of the ways a holistic veterinarian would recommend you try using to relieve feline depression in your pet. Boost Spirits With Sights And Sounds A practitioner who uses alternative approaches at relieving depression may recommend that you increase the lighting inside your home to help your cat feel better. Light will stimulate hormones within the body that help give an uplifted feeling. In winter months, cats tend to feel more depressed because light is limited each day. Use lamps to illuminate your home and keep curtains and blinds wide open during sunlight hours. In addition to lighting, add some light music in your home. Make sure the volume is not too loud and keep your choices on the easy listening side so they do not scare your pet.  Add Some Exercise And Enjoyment Playing with your pet is a sure way to get them to interact with you. Many times, a pet will become depressed if there is a new member added to the household. This is true whether a baby was born, a relative has come to live with you, or you had gotten an additional pet. Show your pet they are still important to you by making a point in spending quality time playing with them each day. If there is a new human in the home, have them pick up a piece of string or crumple a piece of foil to play with the cat themselves. This can get a bond started between the newcomer and your pet. Heal With The Power Of Touch Massage has several benefits when administered correctly. You can massage your cat by slowly stroking their fur when they are curled up along side or sitting on your lap. If they purr and shut their eyes with approval, add a few extra strokes to help them relax. Some cats enjoy having a face rub or their ears gently pulled while you massage. When massaging, use slow, rhythmic movement movements where you move their skin in a clockwise direction. This is very enjoyable to most cats and they will soon look forward to your sessions. For more information, contact Clayton Veterinary Associates or a similar...

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What To Know If Your Pet Has Ingested A Foreign Object

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Pets can be curious, and both dogs and cats can try to chew — and sometimes swallow — interesting things. The problem is that these foreign objects may not pass right through the intestinal tract. Depending on what your pet has ingested, that foreign object may be poisonous, dangerous or simply not digestible, so it will stay in the stomach or intestines and will have to be removed surgically. Signs That Your Pet Has Ingested Something Inedible It can be tough to determine if your pet has swallowed something inappropriate. If you didn’t actually see your dog or cat eat an object, you may only know something is wrong by how your pet acts. A pet that has swallowed something inedible will show signs of not feeling well or being “off.” The most obvious symptom is that your pet will show a decreased appetite or stop eating entirely. In some cases, you’ll see that your pet has vomited or has diarrhea. In very severe cases, your pet will not even be able to ingest water. It’s important to treat this as an emergency and seek immediate veterinary care. Diagnosing an Intestinal Obstruction and Deciding on Surgery The good news is that a vet will be able to quickly assess the situation and confirm ingestion of a foreign object with an x-ray. It should be easy to identify the presence of an obstruction in the intestinal tract, but it can be a challenge to decide whether emergency surgery, non-emergency surgery or some other treatment is the best option.  Your vet can make this decision based on how long it seems that the item has been in your pet’s system, where it is and the size or shape of the objects. He or she will also assess whether it appears that the object has perforated any area of the intestinal tract. What Happens During Intestinal Surgery If your pet is very lucky, the vet may be able to perform endoscopic surgery, which means a very small incision is made and small instruments are inserted to grasp and remove the toy.  In most cases, though, full surgery will be required. Your vet will put your pet under general anesthesia and make an incision over the area where the object is sitting — stomach or intestines. Ideally, the object can be removed without complications. But sometimes, the foreign body can have caused some issues with loss of blood supply. If this has happened, the vet will need to take more time and remove dead or dying tissue in a process called resection and anastomosis. Other complications can include bloated and twisted sections of the stomach or intestines, which will have to be untwisted and correctly positioned.  Finally, the vet will use a sterile solution to wash the intestinal cavity. This reduces the risk of infection. Then the animal is stitched back up. How to Care for Your Pet After Surgery Your vet will give you complete instructions for caring for your dog or cat following abdominal surgery. You will need to keep your pet still and prevent activity for about two weeks, depending on the type of surgery. It may be necessary for your pet to wear an e-collar that prevents it from licking or biting at the stitches. You’ll also need to...

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The Danger Of Intestinal Obstructions In Dogs

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Dogs love to chew, so it’s little wonder that many dogs are seen for intestinal obstructions every year. Intestinal obstructions are caused by ingesting foreign objects and can be fatal if left untreated. By knowing how obstructions occur, and taking preventative measures, you can keep your dog feeling healthy and happy. What Is An Intestinal Obstruction? An intestinal obstruction occurs when a foreign body blocks the intestinal passage of your dog. This blockage may be whole or partial, but both types can be exceptionally painful or even fatal for your dog. When an obstruction occurs, the item causing the blockage causes fluid and other items to build up behind it. This buildup causes a high amount of pressure and proceeds to limit or cut off blood flow to the area. As soon as blood flow becomes limited to the obstructed area, the intestinal tissues will begin to die. There are several key signs to look out for if you suspect your dog has an obstruction. Look for your dog to be acting lethargic and unlike their usual self. Dogs dealing with an obstruction may vomit profusely and strain while trying to have a bowel movement. Your dog may also avoid its food bowl and its abdomen may be tender. Treating A Blockage When you bring your dog in for an intestinal blockage, the vet will inspect your dog’s abdomen for any lumps or protrusions. If your vet finds cause for concern, they may order x-rays to pinpoint the location of the blockage.  When a blockage is found, our dog may need to have surgery. If a large obstruction is identified your vet will operate to correct any damage and to remove the blockage. If a smaller, less complicated obstruction is identified, your vet may call for a gastric endoscopy. Preventing Intestinal Obstructions When it comes to preventing intestinal obstructions in your dog it’s best to start with what they chew on every day. Some treats and chew toys, especially rawhide, pose an obstruction risk to your dog. If your dog is an aggressive chewer make sure your dog isn’t consuming any large chunks of toys, treats or rawhides. If you notice your dog demolishing a toy, take the toy away and give them a sturdier option. Another step to take is to make sure any trash receptacles are firmly secured. Dogs are exceptionally attracted to old food containers. Additional items, such as plastic bags or shoes should also be stored safely out of your dog’s reach. You may also want to consider supplementing your dog’s diet with canned pumpkin. For small dogs, use 2 teaspoons of pumpkin, for larger breeds use 2 tablespoons. Pumpkin is full of soluble fiber and water, which will help your dog have regular bowel movements. Be sure to use plain canned pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling. Consult with your animal clinic before starting a new supplement routine with your dog. An intestinal obstruction is a veterinary emergency, make sure to call your vet immediately if your dog exhibits symptoms of a blockage. They can quickly work to treat the obstruction and get your dog feeling better as soon as possible....

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Not-So-Fat Cat: Tips For Helping Your Kitty Slim Down

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If your cat is suffering from a weight problem, your vet may have expressed some concerns about long-term health. Overweight cats can be at risk of many conditions, from heart disease to fatty liver. If your vet has suggested that it’s time to slim your kitty’s waist, you’ll want to arm yourself with some tried-and-true techniques for burning some weight off. Here are some tips to help you get things going. Start With the Food One of the first things you’ll want to consider is what and how much your cat is eating. For example, your veterinarian may suggest switching your cat’s food to a low-calorie option instead of the traditional calorie-dense foods you may be buying. Start gradually replacing a portion of the food at each meal. Increase the amount of the new food each time you feed until you’ve made a complete transition. This eases the chances of digestive upset. In addition to the new food, you should also consider providing your cat’s meals in smaller amounts. Your vet will tell you how much the cat should be eating throughout the day. Take the total and divide it into smaller amounts throughout the day so you aren’t dumping all of the food at once and then facing a hungry kitty in the evenings. Otherwise, you’ll be tempted to overfeed. Add More Play Increased activity levels are another key for helping your cat lose weight. Add more play time to your cat’s daily routine. The more your cat plays, the more calories he or she is burning. Invest in a laser pointer or a flashlight. Most cats love chasing these types of lights. Even many lazy kitties can’t resist the temptation of a wiggling light on the floor. And, using lights for chasing games will help foster a cat’s natural hunter instincts, which may actually encourage more activity. If your cat doesn’t like to get moving for anything but food, talk to your vet about low-calorie treats that you can use in a treat toy. These toys are great for getting food-motivated cats up and around. Just be sure you’re mindful about how many treats your cat gets each day – they should be counted into the daily food limits. With tips like these, you can help your cat shed some of those excess pounds and restore the lean body structure that’s ideal for his or her health. Talk to your vet today about any other changes you may need to make to keep your cat healthy. To learn more, contact an animal hospital like Denville Animal...

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