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The Tiny Italian Greyhound

Saturday, November 18, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

You just saw a small dog run by that seemed like a small version of the Greyhound.  You may have seen an Italian Greyhound.  This is an ancient canine breed  that has all of the sleek proportions of a full size greyhound. These dogs are barely a foot tall. If you compare a regular greyhound to, lets say a bus, then the Italian greyhound could be compared to an Italian sports car. They have the same easy going, sweet disposition of the larger greyhounds and the desire to run.  It was a favorite of Italian noblemen and if you know anything about art, you would know that the miniature greyhound is frequently seen in renaissance art.  So now you’re thinking that the Italian greyhound would make a perfect apartment dog right?  You are partially correct. They are good for apartments in terms of size, but they require lots of exercise. You can’t just put on his dog leash and stroll around the neighborhood. These dogs like to run in wide open spaces. So if you live in a city, you way want to re-consider owning an Italian greyhound.

Remember, your pets count!

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How to Give Subcutaneous Fluids to Your Cat At Home

Thursday, November 16, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

Molly was at the vet again yesterday after a bout with vomiting and diarrhea. This was due to her age and her advanced kidney disease. The vet examined, medicated her and gave her subcutaneous fluids to improve her hydration. Molly is still drinking on her own at home so I’m not currently administering subcutaneous fluids at home but at some point, I may have to.

VCA has provided detailed instructions on how to administer subcutaneous fluids at home. This article was written  by Ernest Ward DVM. We thank them for providing this valuable information. Please note, all information below was provided by VCA. https://vcahospitals.com

Why has my veterinarian recommended at-home subcutaneous fluid treatment?

subcutaneous_fluid_administration-1Administering supplemental fluids can benefit cats with a variety of medical conditions. Most commonly, home fluid therapy is recommended for cats with kidney disease or chronic renal failure (CRF). If your cat is diagnosed with a condition that will benefit from fluid therapy, your veterinarian can teach you to perform this simple procedure. Don’t be alarmed – it is normal to feel hesitant or apprehensive about administering any treatment to your pet.

“The benefits that your cat receives will make it well worth your time to learn this simple technique.”

Giving injections is outside the comfort zone for almost anyone outside the medical profession. However, subcutaneous fluid administration is not nearly as difficult as it sounds. The benefits that your cat receives will make it well worth your time to learn this simple technique.

What equipment do I need?

The equipment for home fluid therapy typically consists of a bag of fluids, a fluid drip set, and a needle. The fluid drip set is simply a tube that connects the fluid bag to the needle.

A member of our veterinary professional staff will go through the steps with you in person. The steps are as follows:

1. Remove the fluid bag and fluid drip set from their protective packaging.

2. Close the line lock in the middle of the fluid tubing by moving the roller so that it squeezes the tubing. The lock on a new fluid set is usually set in the open position.

3. The top end of the fluid set has a large, pointed end with a protective cap. Remove this cap, but do not allow it to become contaminated. IT SHOULD NOT TOUCH ANYTHING.

4. Pull the protective covering from the exit port on the bottom end of the fluid bag. This will expose a hole that will accept the pointed end of the fluid set.

5. Push the pointed end of the fluid set into the open hole of the fluid bag. It must be seated firmly to prevent leaks.

6. Gently squeeze and release the bulb at the top of the drip set until the bulb chamber is about half full with fluid.

7. Remove the protective cap from the lower end of the fluid set, but do not discard it. Do not allow it to become contaminated. IT SHOULD NOT TOUCH ANYTHING.

8. Open the line lock or roller on the tubing and then hold or suspend the fluid bag; fluid should flow freely. Fill the fluid line with fluid from the bag. Be sure that all large air bubbles run out of the tubing.

a. Once the fluid line is full, close the lock on the fluid line by rolling the roller downward.

b. Replace the protective cap on the lower end of the fluid set.

9. Open the protective wrapping around the needle so that the open end (not the sharp end) is exposed. Do not contaminate the open end by allowing it to touch ANYTHING.

10. Remove the protective cap from the lower end of the fluid set, and place the open end of the needle on it. Press it on firmly. You may discard this protective cap.

How do you insert the needle into the cat?

subcutaneous_fluid_administration-2Insert the needle just under the skin in one of several locations that have unusually loose skin. These include:

1. At the level of the shoulder blades, just to the right and to the left of midline.

2. At the level of the hipbones, just to the right and to the left of midline.

How do you administer the fluids?

Choose a comfortable location where you will treat your cat. This may be on a table, countertop, or on your lap.

1. Hang the fluid bag about 3 feet (1 meter) above the level of your cat’s head. You may create a bag hanger using a coat hanger, over the door clothes hanger, etc.

“Be sure that both of you are in a position that will be comfortable for about 10-15 minutes.”

2. Bring your cat to your chosen location. Be sure that both of you are in a position that will be comfortable for about 10-15 minutes. The end of the fluid set should easily reach your cat without much tension.

3. Pick up a roll of loose skin in one of the above locations.

4. Lay the point of the needle at the base of the roll of skin with the needle horizontal and pointing toward the cat’s head(assuming that the cat is lying on its chest).

5. Advance the needle slightly forward while pulling the roll of skin backward. This motion should be firm and steady, not shaky and timid, and will place the point of the needle just under the skin.

6. Release the roll of skin. The point of the needle should remain under the skin.

7. Grasp the fluid set lock in one hand. Begin the flow of fluids by rolling the roller upward.

NOTE:  Some cats are more cooperative if they are placed in a box not much larger than the cat. A cardboard cat carrier is often the correct size. Other cats prefer being held in a towel that covers their head during the procedure. Experiment with different locations and techniques until you find the most comfortable technique for you and your cat. Most cats will quickly become used to the procedure. Your cat may seem nervous the first few times, but most become comfortable by the fourth or fifth administration.

How much fluid should I give my cat?

Your veterinarian will tell how much to give your cat for your specific situation.

“The average sized cat should receive 100-150 ml of fluids at one time.”

As a rule, the average sized cat should receive 100-150 ml of fluids at one time. If you are using two locations, you should give half of that amount in each location.

When you have given the prescribed amount of fluids, complete the following steps:

1. Stop the flow of fluids by pushing the roller in the fluid set lock downward firmly. If you do not close it well and the bag is left hanging, fluid will drip out. Some bags will have an additional slide closure on the fluid line. You can close this additional device after you have removed the needle from your pet’s skin.

2. Remove the needle from the skin and replace its protective cap. Be very careful when you replace the needle into the cap. This is when the majority of injuries and “needle sticks” occur. Remove the used needle from the drip set.

3. PLACE A NEW, STERILE NEEDLE ON THE DRIP SET AS SOON AS YOU ARE THROUGH. This prevents bacteria that were picked up on the old needle from migrating up into the fluid bag. If you wish, you may return used needles to our hospital for proper disposal.

4. Store the equipment in a safe place until the next fluid administration. The fluids should be kept in a relatively cool location out of direct sunlight. Be sure to keep this and all medications out of the reach of children and pets.

What other tips do I need to know?

It is usually not necessary to “sterilize” the skin with alcohol before inserting the needle. In reality, wiping a little alcohol on the skin does not really sterilize it and the odor and feel of alcohol may aggravate your cat.

  • Most cats tolerate fluid administration quite well. However, if the fluids are unusually cold or hot, they may be uncomfortable. Ideally, the fluids should be stored at about body temperature. However, as long as they are at room temperature most cats are fine. Do not refrigerate them.
  • As the fluids are running, a lump will form under the skin. Do not be alarmed; this pocket of fluid will be absorbed over the next few hours. If absorption is slow, gravity may cause the fluids to migrate downward along the side of the body. Fluids may even move under the skin of the front or rear legs in rare instances. Do not be alarmed. If this happens, the fluids will still be absorbed and your cat will not be in any pain or discomfort.
  • You will not cause any problems if a few bubbles of air are injected under the skin. If quite a bit of air gets under the skin, you may feel a crackling sound when you push on the skin, and your cat may experience mild discomfort for a couple of hours, but no real harm or damage will occur. The body will eventually absorb the air without any difficulty.

What should I do if the fluids stop running during administration?

This often happens when the end of the needle moves against the skin or the underlying tissue. In this event, the needle opening is “blocked” or covered and fluid cannot flow freely. Do not remove the needle; rather, gently reposition it until the fluids begin to flow again. Experiment by slightly moving the needle’s position (back and forth, up and down, side to side) until the fluids flow freely again. Twisting the needle (rotating clock- or counter-clockwise) will change the position of the bevel.

“You may have to reposition the needle several times during fluid administration.”

In most cases, only a minor adjustment is all that is needed. You may have to reposition the needle several times during fluid administration.

What should I do if the fluid runs slowly out of the bag?

When you are finished giving fluids, you should close the lock firmly. However, closing the lock firmly may crush the tubing so that fluid will not flow well on subsequent use. If this happens, move the lock to another place on the fluid tubing, and open the crushed area of the tube by pinching it open with your fingers.

What if the fluids become cloudy?

“If any cloudiness or discoloration develops in the fluids, do not use the bag.”

If any cloudiness or discoloration develops in the fluids, do not use the bag. This discoloration or cloudiness usually means that the fluids have become contaminated with bacteria. If you administer these fluids to your dog, a serious infection may occur under the skin.

 

Enjoy the best oldies while caring for your precious pet! Edgewater GOLD Radio plays the best variety of oldies from the 50s 60s 70s 80s plus great standards! Download the free Edgewater GOLD Radio app or listen from our website: The Edgewater Internet Radio Network!

 

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Can Dogs Eat Turkey Bones?

Tuesday, November 14, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

The answer regarding turkey bones is absolutely NOT!  Cooked bones can splinter and rupture the digestive tract. As for rib and pork bones? Another big NO! These also splinter easily. As a basic guideline, I would say that all bones are not safe for dogs. Beef bones can shatter and perforate the intestinal tract or cause an intestinal blockage. Fish bones would also rupture the digestive tract.  Blockages in the intestinal track will require emergency surgery. Large bones such as T-bones can become stuck in the esophagus. If a dog doesn’t chew the bones thoroughly, he can choke. There are also more reasons not to give a dog a bone:

  • Bones can cut the mouth and cause tongue injuries.
  • Round bones could get stuck in your dogs lower jaw and will require a trip to the vet to remove.’
  • Bone fragments that pierce your dog’s intestine can cause serious bacterial infections.
  • Bone and bone fragments can cause your dog to become constipated.
  • Bone fragments can be sharp and cause your dog pain and also bleeding from the rectum.

So no bones about it, no bones for your dog!

I would like to thank Vetstreet.com for providing some of this valuable information.

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Treats that Are Healthier For Your Cat

Monday, November 13, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

Most of the time, when we think of treats for pets, we think of dogs. There are many treats on the market for cats as well. My cats love their treats every night after dinner. Make sure that you carefully choose the right treat for your cat. Treats should never amount to more than 10% of the cats diet.  Cat treats can also be very fatty and you want to make sure that his treats don’t spoil his appetite. Always check the ingredients on the label. Look for treats that are lower in calories. Another thing that you may want to check is the veterinarian-approved AAFCO certification.

The Association of American Feed Control Officials publishes a set of guidelines for cat food and treats, and if the ingredient definitions meet the regulations, you will see, “Formulated to meet the AAFCO Cat Food Nutrient Profile for Kittens/Adults/Senior)” printed on the label of the treats. Watch out for companies that do not provide this information.  Always look for a treat that is nutritionally balanced yet also has flavor that will appeal to your cats. Treats usually come in beef, chicken or fish flavors. Choose a treat that you cat will like best. My cats like them all.

Don’t ever feed your cat things like cookies or popcorn. Stick will nutritionally balanced store bought cat treats.

Remember, your pet count!

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Molly under suspicion for shutting down Edgewater Gold Radio!

Cats are incredible creatures. Sometimes we can’t figure out what’s going through their heads. My 18 year old cat Molly, is catered to like no other cat. She has renal disease and hyperthyroidism so she needs constant care. Molly is extremely attached to me and knows practically every detail of my routine. When it’s time for bed, she’s sitting on the pillow, when it’s time to eat, she’s sitting by her bowl, when it’s time to sit together in the evening, she’s sitting on the ottoman, when it’s time to be brushed, she is sitting at the bathroom door and when it’s time for her meds, she’s sitting by the kitchen counter. When I’m working on voice tracks or other routine Edgewater Gold Radio tasks, she is sitting right by my side. She is incredible.

I am fortunate enough to spend lots of time with Molly during this time of her life. As you could see,  we are very bonded. If her routine is broken in any way, strange things happen. She has been known to turn on the Bose wave radio in the middle of the night blasting music and jolting me out of bed many times! She would keep her paw on the volume button until the music reached a symphony level! The reason, she wanted to eat and I was still sleeping! Needless the say, The Bose Wave radio went away.

I run Edgewater Gold Radio from my home. Years ago it required an audio mixer and a bunch of equipment. I sent a small FM signal out over our apartment complex. To open the microphone, all you had to do was press a button. So one day while I was driving out of my complex, I had my little station on the car radio, as I turned onto River Road, I heard “Meowing” over the  music playing on the radio station. It was Molly! She climbed onto the chair, pressed the mike button and began to”speak” on the air! Incredible.

Now we come to yesterday. I was out of town for most of the afternoon and didn’t return till 9:30 pm. Molly usually takes her medicine around 6PM. She is also fed at this time. When I came home, I found Edgewater Gold Radio off the air! Now the computer housing the automation system is set to never shutdown automatically. I checked all codes to see what happened to cause this shutdown. I found nothing! I looked at the listener statistics and determined that the station must have gone off around 7pm or earlier because it showed the listeners dropped at that time.

Now after determining that there was no reason for the computer to shut down, no updates…nothing, my only guess is that Molly climbed up on the computer, sat on the button and shut it down! Reason, “Jim wasn’t home when he should have been to feed me, sit with me and give me my medicine!”

If this is true, it’s incredible!

Remember, your pets count!

Edgewater Gold Radio is back on playing the best oldies of your life and providing live and local information for the Delaware beaches!  Download our free Edgewater Gold Radio app and listen from our website: The Edgewater Radio Network!

 

 

 

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We’ve been feeding an outdoor cat for the past few months. Everyday, he comes up to our porch several times a day to eat and drink. In the winter, our feline friends have more energy requirements and need more calories. Pet Md has published some information which contains a great idea for providing the extra calorie requirements for our feline friends during the cold winter months.

The cats will require extra calories and fat during the cold weather months in order to maintain their energy requirements. If you can inspire your neighbors to be involved in the project, even if only through drop off donations of food to the designated “feeder of the cats,” the project will have a much better outcome. A dry kitten formula is an excellent source of extra calories and balanced nutrition. Canned cat foods are also a great source of high calorie nutrition, but because of their higher liquid content they may freeze during the coldest temperatures.

Feeding and water stations should be protected from the cold and placed as near to the sleeping shelter as possible so that the cats do not have to be exposed to harsh conditions when they need to eat or drink.

Feeding the cats at the same time each day will allow them to expect and rely on a schedule. If they do not know whether they will be eating or not, they will venture out into the cold to look for food, defeating the whole purpose for the care project. Having a dedicated “feeder,” or a small group of scheduled “feeders” who take turns, can make the process much smoother. Also important to the cats’ survival is fresh, clean water. Of course, snow is an excellent source for water, but don’t forget to check the water bowl regularly to make sure it hasn’t frozen during the night.

While the cats may not be able to thank you in ways you can understand, you will know that they have repaid your kindness with the absence of rodents, and you will know that it is all worth it.

Thanks to Web Md for providing this valuable information.

Remember, your pets count!

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Adopting a Pet, Do Your Homework!

Thursday, November 9, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

If you want to search for a new pet online, you have many options depending on what you’re looking for. There are rescue groups for almost any breed of dog or cat. There are shelters in almost every town and there are cyber shelters such as petfinder.com. I would advise you not to fall in love with a pet just by looking at a photo. We discussed in previous postings the characteristics of particular breeds of pets.  Research the breeds temperament and background. Consider the breeds, size, general behavior and any other characteristics that may be important to you. Any pet that you bring into your home should match well with your family and your lifestyle. Check out the rescue group as well. Find out about its procedure, its follow up policies and its adoption fees.  Before you go out and buy that dog leash or that cat bed make sure you do your homework and keep an open mind. You may want to consider an older or a pet with special needs. Love is love and they will certainly pay you back with that big time!

Remember, your pets count!

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You Just Moved and Your Dog Wants Out

Wednesday, November 8, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

You just moved and you notice that your dog is always trying to run out every time you open a door. He never did this before so why is he doing it now? The answer is simple. Your dog doesn’t understand the concept that you just moved and this is his home now. All he knows is that he’s in an unfamiliar place and needs to get back to the home that he knows.

Make sure that your pup’s new home is as familiar as possible by surrounding him with his favorite things that smell like his old home. You should also lead your dog around the new home and give him a chance to sniff everything so he can get acquainted with it.  If you do this, it will create a little sense of familiarity for him.

Finally, until you have a chance to walk him around the new home, it may be a good idea to limit your dogs access to all areas of the house until you are able to do so. You should also walk your pup around his new neighborhood to get him familiar to the sights and smells or the area. Before you know it, he will love his new home and neighborhood!

Remember, your pets count!

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Pet Pink Eye

Tuesday, November 7, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

Does your pet have red, teary, weepy eyes or puffy eyelids?  Do her eyes have a greenish or yellowish discharge?  If so, she is probably feeling the pain of an infection or inflammation of the tissue that lines the eyelid and coats the eye.  This is called conjunctivitis or “pink eye.”  Symptoms of this infection can vary.  From Allergens, chemicals and grasses to bacteria, viruses and fungi.  Once the causative agent is identified, pet medications such as antibiotics or anti-inflammatory drugs are used to dispatch it.  In most cases, these medications work and the result is bright, clear and healthy eyes.  Treatment is a must as conjunctivitis that is left untreated can lead to other more serious problems. Get you pet to the vet. Your vet will prescribe some eye drops that will help resolve this condition.

Remember, your pets count!

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Subcutaneous Fluids For Cats with Renal Failure

Monday, November 6, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

Cats with renal disease become dehydrated very easily. If your cat is not taking in enough fluids, you may need to administer subcutaneous fluids. Your vet may initially administer them and later you will be trained to administer them in the comfort of the pets home. Subcutaneous fluids are also made of electrolytes and they are used for maintenance of hydration. These fluids are administered by needle under the skin. In order to administer subcutaneous fluids at home, you will require some training. Training is short and the procedure is fairly simple.

The hydrating fluid, which replaces the liquid lost as a result of frequent urination, will move slowly through the cat’s body after being administered. This will help maintain the balance between the water intake and water lost.

Even during the maintenance stage of fluid therapy, it’s possible for your cat to become severely dehydrated again. If you notice a drastic change in your feline renal health, visit a doctor for more drastic treatment options.

Thanks once again to Vetinfo for providing some of this valuable information.

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