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Archive for October, 2013

DOG HALLOWEENThe holidays are the most dangerous time for your pets. Just call any veterinary emergency clinic  to verify this. The number of pet injuries, poisonings, accidents and illness that are preventable rise dramatically from November to the beginning of January.  Here are some of the most dangerous.

1. The holiday food, pet owners seem to feed their pets very fatty leftovers and foods during the holidays. This causes a sharp rise in  pancreatitis in dogs.

2. The holiday plants like poinsettias are poisonous to dogs and cats. Don’t buy them and put them around your house.

3. Holiday tree ornaments such as tinsel and glass ornaments. Glass can break and injure your pet. I almost lost a cat because he ate the tinsel on the tree. DON’T USE IT IF YOU HAVE A PET!

4. Candles can cause burns if your cat accidentally  gets to close. If your dog knocks them over,they can cause a fire.

5. Dinner guests and holiday visitors that don’t know how to interact with your cat or dog can get scratched or bitten. It also provides an escape route for your pet if they leave the door open.

6. The holiday presents present a threat if they contain chocolate which is toxic to cats or dogs!

It’s a good idea to keep the ASPCA poison control number close just in case. 1-888-426-4435

If you play it safe, you won’t have to keep your pet in his pet or dog carrier or crate all the time during the holiday season.

 

Remember, your pets count!

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How Long Should You Feed A Puppy PUPPY FOOD?

Wednesday, October 30, 2013
posted by Jim Murphy

PUPPIES EATINGA puppy needs a higher level of nutrients than what’s available in regular dog food.  Because of these special needs, your puppy should be on a high quality puppy food for the first year and up to 18 months for the giant breeds. Most dog food manufacturers offer a special formula for puppies that is higher in protein. (Protein should be between 28 and 30%)  and enriched with the fat soluble and water soluble vitamins, minerals, fats, and other essentials for your growing puppy needs.  Always check with your vet for the best type of food and check the back of the bag for the proper quantity. Remove uneaten food after about 15 or 20 minutes and make sure that you feed your pup at least three times a day if he’s under six months, two times from six to twelve months and then once after a year.

Remember, your pets count!

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DOG MANWe are all pet lovers. I know that because you wouldn’t be reading this if you weren’t. Unfortunately, there are lots of people who do not like pets. Yesterday, I went to the county park for my daily walk. There are always lots of dogs having a great time with their owners and the park is a perfect place for your dog to get exercise. As I was walking, I noticed a bunch of people with their dogs, all on their  leashes. They seemed to be in a group talking. I also saw a man screaming at them to get their dogs out of the park. The dogs had a perfect right to be in the park. They were with their owners and were not causing any harm. As someone went to tell this cranky old man off, the group went up to him in unison and shouted at him to get out of the park. They also used lots of obsenities which prompted him to hurry off. I said “good for them.”  The park is a public place and our furry friends have the perfect right to be there! So it turns out that I didn’t have to intervene on their behalf after all. If you take your dog to the park, no one can say anything to you if your dog is on a leash and you pick up after him. There are also special dog runs where your dog could be taken off his leash for exercise and to social with other canine friends. Have fun with your dog in the park and beware of cranky old men!!

Remember, your pets count!

 

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Care for Aging Pets

Sunday, October 27, 2013
posted by Jim Murphy

OLDER PETSDid you know that there is an entire class of veterinary medicine for older pets? It’s called  “geriatric” wellness for middle and old age pets. The aging process differs according to the size and breed of the pet. Larger dogs normally have shorter life spans than smaller dogs. For example, a Great Dane has an average life span of eight years while a Toy Poodle may live to 15. Cats can live to 20 or beyond. It’s important to know your pet and it’s life expectancy. It’s also helpful to know about the breed and some of the disease related traits that may go along with it. Different types of diseases such as arthritis of certain types of cancers can be associated with specific breeds.

Older pets should be examined by their vet about twice per year. Your pet’s doctor may wish to perform blood screening, urine or fecal tests. These tests are important because they can detect early changes in liver or kidney function and well as certain endocrine diseases.  Discuss changes to your senior pets diet with your vet. There are certain diets that are actually higher in fat content than adult maintenance diets. Always look at the caloric content of the diet.

Finally, your vet may want to put your pet on supplements or anti-inflammatory medications to ease your pets comfort. Older pets become stiff and battle with arthritis, so it’s important that you make them as comfortable as possible and improve the quality of your pets life.

Remember, your pets count!

 

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AHH! Puppy Breath —-So Sweet

Saturday, October 26, 2013
posted by Jim Murphy

CUTE PUPPY 5Did you ever wonder why a small puppy’s breath smells so good (usually)?  It’s because of the healthy and mild diet of the mother’s milk.  Lactose in milk smells sweet. Digestive enzymes in the puppy’s tummy break down the proteins in the milk also add to the sweetness of the smell. South Florida veterinarian Dr. Jennifer Prior says puppy breath may be the result of the esophagus, which is still developing in young puppies, leaking gases into the puppy’s tummy. If you don’t like the smell of puppy breath, it could be that you are not used to it or if it really smells foul, it could indicate a more serious problem and should be checked out by your vet.

Thanks to “The Nest” website for providing some of this interesting information!

Remember, your pets count!

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A Cat Fight or A Terrible Dream

Wednesday, October 23, 2013
posted by Jim Murphy

cat fightI was not going to write about this today but I had a troublesome dream last night. In my dream, my indoor cat, Mollie somehow got out of our home in Delaware. I heard her crying and ran to the door and saw another cat on top of her “beating her up!” I did everything I could to get to her but could not. You know that strange feeling in dreams when you try to move but can’t. It was a horrible feeling!  I woke up to find Mollie in her bed just fine. What do you do if your cat gets into a fight with another cat or you see two cats fighting?  The first thing that you have to do is see if they’re just playing or really fighting.  Hissing at each other a few times is normal but continued hissing suggests that a cat fight is about to get underway.  If they are fighting, try distracting them. Drop something on the floor  or make a loud noise.  This should startle them and have them running in opposite directions. Shaking a box or can of food treats should also get them to stop fighting.  Do not try to physically remove one cat from the other. You’ll get bitten and scratched. If your cat is injured, get him to your vet as soon as possible. Your vet will determine the extent of his injuries and what type of pet medication is needed.

Remember, your pets count!

 

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Snacks for Cats

Tuesday, October 22, 2013
posted by Jim Murphy

CAT SNACKSDo you like your snacks? I know that I do and your furry friends would enjoy a snack every now and then too. My two cats look forward to their evening treat every night about 8:00 pm. I must admit, I do spoil them and give them a bit too much. It’s fine to give your cat snacks, just make sure that they eat their main food first. Never let the snacks become their main meal. There are not a sufficient amount of nutrients in snacks to substitute for regular cat food. I give my cats “temptations.” They come in a variety of flavors and are not too bad as long as you don’t over do it. Give them a few pieces every night and they will love you for it!

Remember, your pets count!

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GUY AND DOGBelieve it or not, this does happen. What if you meet someone that you really like but he or she doesn’t like your dog or cat and refuses to come over because of your beloved pet, what do you do?  My point of view is very simple, if your new partner cares enough about you, the he/she would get used to your dog or cat. If allergies are the issue, that is another problem. Maybe you will have to  vacuum up the hair more frequently and keep your pet in another room while your new partner is over. This can be a long term problem. If you partner really cares for you, they will do everything they can to curb the allergy problem even if it’s switching medication to a more affective one.

Now if they say that they won’t get used to your pet or even make an effort, well here’s what I say. Give your new partner the boot!!

Remember, your pets count!

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Your Big Dog in The Big City

Saturday, October 19, 2013
posted by Jim Murphy

According to Dr. Timothy Mann, a New York City veterinarian, dogs, energy levels and temperament are more important than factors and size. Some large dogs don’t need a big living space if you provide other opportunities Big CItyfor exercise.  He says that St. Bernards and even great  Danes can all live comfortably in the city. The need regular long walks or a run in a dog park. Then, when they come home, they will be content just lying around. Greyhounds will surprise you. They like to run when they have a chance but they are big couch potatoes! Just give them enough exercise outside and they’ll do fine.

st-bernardThere are advantages to having smalls breeds in apartments or condominiums. Some small dogs can even be trained to use a litter box or fake grass on a balcony so you don’t have to worry about rushing downstairs or waiting for the elevator. Apartments are usually too small to accomodate a dog exercise pen, so it’s important that you take your little one out often for exercise.

Remember, your pets count!

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Healing From The Loss of a Pet

Thursday, October 17, 2013
posted by Jim Murphy

cute dog and cat 4We love our pets but losing them can be devastating. Unfortunately their life spans are not as long as ours and we always have the thought in the back of our minds that one day, they will be gone . There are a few things that you can do that may soften the blow of the deep pain we feel when we lose our beloved pet. You may think of adding a second pet to the home before your older one passes on. The younger pet often energizes an older pet. When the time does come, having another pet to love may help with the grieving process. Only time takes the deep hurt away and puts you in a place where you could think of your pet without tears in your eyes.

Keeping the ashes of a pet can be comforting whether you choose to bury them later or keep them in a safe place within your home.  Most important is to have a plan for when that moment comes so you automatically know what has to be done. One last thing, your pets live for the moment. Make every moment with them a good one. Spend lots of time with them and give them lots of love.

Remember, your pets count!

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