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Doggie Massage

Friday, January 3, 2020
posted by Jim Murphy

For thousands of years, massage was used to promote human healing. Using it to promote animal health is a more recent development. For several decades, hardworking equine show jumpers, race horses and racing dogs have received vigorous rub downs as a way to increase flexibility and increase performance. Now massage is used for companion pets. Among its many benefits, massages seems to mitigate the affects of anxiety and stress, help animals recover faster from trauma or surgery and reduce the chronic aches and pains of elderly canines. To help insure that massage therapy is effective, be sure to hire a trained professional who understands canine anatomy. Remember to pamper your dog with lots of exercise dog toys and treats as well.

Remember your pets count!

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Medical Emergency with Our Cat Atlantis

Thursday, January 2, 2020
posted by Jim Murphy

As we began the new year, I woke up to find our cat Atlantis vomiting, not eating and sort of listless. I also noticed that he had diarrhea. I immediately became concerned since he has fine the night before. He  usually has a very strong personality that was definitely dimmed yesterday. Since it was New Years day, our animal hospital was closed. They do have an 24 hour emergency service. At first, I called and made an appointment for this morning but later changed my mind and took him in for emergency care.

The first thing that the Veterinarian noticed is that Atlantis lost 1/2 pound since he was last seen about a month ago. This is a significant weight loss in a short period of time for a cat. She then suggested a complete panel of blood work. I agreed. We recently adopted Atlantis and we have no knowledge of his past medical history.

After about 1/2 hour, the doctor came in with the results. They weren’t as bad as I feared but the results did indicate what may be causing Atlantis’s illness.

All was normal except Atlantis TT4 which measures Thyroid function registered at 9.0 ug/dl, the normal range is 0.8 – 4.7. This indicated that Atlantis has hyperthyroidism. His liver and kidney function were slightly elevated. The doctor mentioned that she thinks that these levels will return to a normal range once the thyroid is controlled. A hyperactive thyroid can cause many conditions including weight loss and gastrointestinal issues. My previous cat Molly had seizures caused by her hyperthyroidism.

The doctor gave Atlantis a injection to help with his nausea and a prescription for Methimazole for his thyroid. I know that the thyroid can be easily controlled because I also have hyperthyroidism. If left uncontrolled, this disease can be fatal as it affects every organ in the body.

I’m very thankful that I made the decision to take Atlantis in immediately. He is now home, comfortable and doing much better. I always stress to my readers “pay attention to your pet.” Don’t shrug off any changes in their routine. Too many pet owners don’t pay enough attention and many pets are lost due to poor judgement.

Remember, your pets count!

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As the year comes to an end, we think back on the events in 2019 and try to make some resolutions for the coming year. One of your resolutions may be to contribute a bit more to pet rescue organizations or maybe even to adopt a shelter pet. In doing so you’re doing such a great service by giving an innocent, unwanted pet a new lease on life. Maybe another resolution is to forego some overtime and spend more time with you dog or maybe get more exercise with your pet. Taking your dog on a long walk or jog is healthy for both of you.

Whatever you do in the new year, keep your precious pets safe and loved! It’s payback will reward you many times over.

Happy New Year from The Pet Product Guru!

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Is Aspirin Toxic to Cats?

Monday, December 30, 2019
posted by Jim Murphy

If you have an older cat that suffers from arthritis, you might be tempted to give your  pet pain medication from your medicine cabinet.  Stop right there! Medicine such as aspirin, acetaminophen and ibuprofen are toxic to cats.  In very rare instances, some veterinarians will prescribe aspirin for cats but only in tiny amounts and on a very specific schedule. Most veterinarians prefer other methods to treat arthritis in cats.  They would recommend inflammation reducing agents such as Glucosamine instead. They may even recommend rehabilitation treatments such as acupuncture.  In most cases these therapies tend to work best. Always consult with your veterinarian and never administer any pet medication without his expert opinion.

Remember, your pets count.

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A True Feral or an Indoor/Outdoor Family Pet

Sunday, December 29, 2019
posted by Jim Murphy

We have two indoor cats that are like family but there are many cats in our neighborhood. We feed several feral cats who come around daily for a dry porch and a bite to eat. These cats prefer to lounge and eat in private.  Even if I go near the sliding glass door that opens out to the porch, the cat or cats flee as fast as they can. Feral cats protect themselves from potential predators and that includes humans. They have never interacted with humans and therefore perceive them as a threat.

Yesterday, it was a mild day here in Delaware. As I was sitting on my porch, a cat strolled up the steps . He wasn’t threatened by me sitting there at all. In fact he came up to me and let me pet him. I then picked him up and to my surprise, he let me pet him. His fur was very soft and he looked exceptionally clean. He had a bite to eat, lied down for quite awhile and then decided that his visit was over. This was obviously an indoor/outdoor family pet who came for a visit.

We are pet lovers and welcome the different kinds of critters in our neighborhood ….everything except snakes and skunks I guess.

Remember, your pets count!

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A Few Interesting Facts About Mans Best Friend

Saturday, December 28, 2019
posted by Jim Murphy

Here are a few interesting facts about man’s best friend that we usually don’t think about too often.

  • If you’re thinking of moving to Shanghai and have two dogs, forget about it. They have  one dog pet household policy because they have a population of 20 million and limited living space.
  • Puppies sleep 90 percent of the time their first few weeks of life.
  • Dogs love to chew on bones. It strengthens and cleans their teeth however, never give your dog cooked bones.
  • The average dog has 42 permanent teeth in it’s mouth.
  • It’s a myth that dogs are color blind. Dogs can actually see in color but not as vividly as humans. It’s similar to our vision at dusk. The ydo have better low-light vision than humans because of a special light reflecting layer behind their retinas.

Remember your pets count!

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Kidney Failure in Pets

Friday, December 27, 2019
posted by Jim Murphy

The kidneys remove excess water and waste from the blood.  Kidney functions diminishes slowly with age. In older dogs and cats, kidney failure is a leading cause of illness. Damaged kidneys are less able to concentrate urine so the body needs more fluid. Increased thirst and urination are often the first signs of kidney disease. As the  disease progresses, pets lose weight and their appetite. They play less, sleep more and may exhibit constipation and nausea.  By the time most owners notice these changes, most kidney function is already lost. There is no cure for chronic kidney failure,but your veterinarian can help slow it’s progression and improve it’s quality of life.

Remember, your pets count!

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Do Cats Like Being Hugged?

Thursday, December 26, 2019
posted by Jim Murphy

We love to show our cats lots of affection. Our cats love the attention and sometimes we pick them up to give them a hug.  Do they really like this? The Pet Health Network weighs in on this. Here’s what they have to say.

We humans often assume that our pets enjoy the same types of interaction we do. For example, most cats (and dogs) do not enjoy being hugged, and when our pets try to get away, we often have a tendency to try even harder to hug them. Depending on the cat, she may also not enjoy tummy rubs, even if she seems to solicit this behavior when rolling over and exposing her stomach. Doing this can make a cat feel vulnerable and can lead to biting and aggressive behavior. Every cat is an individual so get to know your cat to see if this is a behavior she really, truly enjoy or is a behavior she is merely tolerating until she lets you know she has had quite enough.

If you pick your cat up and they begin to squirm, that’s the signs that they’ve had enough. Gently put them down and keep yourself from being bitten or scratched!

Remember, your pets count!

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Cats —-Thoughts From The Actors

Monday, December 23, 2019
posted by Jim Murphy

Being a cat lover, I’m planning to see the movie Cats over the holiday. We all love our feline friends. We have two cats and had a holiday party yesterday. Our cat Atlantis was the life of the party going from person to person and entertaining our guests with his purrs, meows and rubs. He loves being around people and people love having him around. On the other hand, our other cat,Millie spent the evening on the bed in the back of the house. Two lovable animals with two distinctly different personalities!

Some of the actors in  Cats share their own experiences with cats.

James Corden says he’s more of a cat person than a dog person. He says “I like the fact that a cat goes up to your house and says I’m going to need a door because I’m going to need to came and go as I please. Just make sure there’s some food and I’ll keep coming back.”

Judi Dench says that she’s very much a cat person because during world war II, people we unable to feed their cats so they went to her house and her family kept and fed 17 cats!

Personally, I never let my cats outside. That would make me very nervous. They are very content being fed and pampered in the comfort of their own home.

Remember, your pets count!

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Cats Provide Good Therapy Too!

Sunday, December 22, 2019
posted by Jim Murphy

Many different kinds of animals are used as partners in animal assisted therapy. These can range from birds to rabbits to lamas and horses.  Of course dogs and cats are at the top of the list.  Interacting with pets has a wonderful, calming affect on people that are ill or injured. This can help them feel better both physically and emotionally. Therapy cats can be any size and breed. All that’s required is a calm, gentle personality and interest in people. To prepare to work with a therapist, each cat must go through a training program. It’s taught to sit quietly, tolerate frequent handling by strangers and stay calm in the face of sudden loud noises and distractions.  These cats deserve special recognition for their wonderful abilities to help people that are ill.  Give them an extra cat toy or snack for all of their hard work!

Remember, your pets count!

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