Your Pets Count

pet information that caters to your special friend

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Hurricane Harvey is pummeling the coast of Texas. It came in last nice as a powerful Category 4 storm which has catastrophic results!

Obviously, it’s hurricane season and make sure that you remember your pets when making disaster emergency plans! If you have to evacuate because a hurricane threatens the area in which you live, don’t forget about your cat of dog. Keep his pet carrier in a convenient place in case you have to get out fast. The instincts of your pet cannot be counted on to survive a disaster. Pack at least one weeks supply of pet food and always remember your pets leash. Make sure that you have the proper ID tags clearly visible on your pet. If you must go to a hotel or shelter, ask if it’s OK to bring your pet. It is very important that you don’t wait until the last minute to evacuate. Rescue officials may not let you take your pet. Keep up to date on all of the weather conditions and evacuate sooner rather than later. If you have no choice but to leave your pet home, make sure that he has a current ID and a secure collar. Take a picture of your pet with you just in case he gets lost. I cannot emphasize it enough that your pets are a part of your family. Plan ahead and make sure they are included in your disaster plans.

Remember, your pets count!

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Guacamole and Alcohol, a Big NO NO for Dogs!

Thursday, August 24, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

dogalcholThere are some foods that your dog should never have and some of them may surprise you! If you give your dog a chip with guacamole on it, there will be severe stomach problems for your best friend. For instance, the reason why guacamole should never be given to your dog is because avocados contain persin which is harmless to humans but can be very toxic to your dog. If you happen to be growing avocados at home, keep your dog away from the plants. Persin is in the leaves, seed and bark as well as the fruit.

Alcohol is also very dangerous for your dog. That’s because alcohol has the same effect on a dog’s liver and brain that it has on humans but it takes far less time to do a lot of damage. Web Md says that just a little can cause vomiting, diarrhea, central nervous system depression, problems with coordination, difficulty breathing, coma, even death, and the smaller the dog, the greater the effect.

Remember, your pets count!

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Emergency Pet Services

Wednesday, August 23, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

emergencypetclinicI’ve had my two kitties for a long time. Molly is 18 and Millie is 12, during this time, I’ve had to take Molly to a 24 hour emergency clinic at the animal hospital twice. Once, about 10 years ago when she suddenly had trouble walking. I was very concerned that she may have a blood clot which could be fatal. It was Sunday and we were eating dinner when this occurred. I quickly placed her in her carrier, left all of the food and dishes on the table and drove to 24 emergency vet. Luckily we never found out what caused Molly’s to suddenly become lame but when the vet examined her, she suddenly was able to walk again. I was  glad for the 24 hour emergency service and glad that I took her.

Last month, Molly began vomiting and became extremely dehydrated due to advanced kidney disease, I took her to the emergency clinic here in Delaware and thank goodness I did. She would not have lasted too long. They hydrated her, examined her and found the cause of the vomiting. Since then, she is doing much better.

Even if your pet is not sick now, I would strongly recommend finding out where there’s and emergency pet clinic or an animal hospital that has emergency services in your area. Do a drive by to check it out and keep the number handy because you never know. Pets, like humans can suddenly have an emergency situation. Be prepared.

Remember your pets count!

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Keeping Your Pets Safe During the Eclipse

Monday, August 21, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

dogeclpiseWell, the highly anticipated moment is soon to be here… We’re counting down the hours to first total solar eclipse to cross the country in nearly 100 years. It will start around 1:22pm EST and continue for about 2 hours.

I highly recommend that pets stay indoors as their eyes can be damaged by looking directly at the sun during this total solar eclipse. . It’s better to be safe than sorry. This may sound silly but if your dog must be outdoors during this time, make sure he’s wearing his protective glasses as well.

Have a safe day and enjoy this once in 99 year event!

Remember, your pets count!

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Are Older Dogs the Best For Seniors?

Sunday, August 20, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

senior-and-dogSeniors need and appreciate the company of a dog probably more than any other age group but if a senior citizen wishes to adopt a puppy at age 65 or older, there’s a lot to consider. When the dog reaches fourteen or fifteen, the senior will be 76 or 77 years old. The question is will that senior still be able to care for the dog at that age. Sure many will but a lot could happen in that time to limit the mobility of a senior citizen. This is why an older, shelter dog may be a better choice . If there was ever a time to own a dog, it would be around the time that you hit 70. For an older couple, a dog could make a hugh difference in their lives. The kids are grown and the rooms are empty. Never get a dog for someone without consulting with them first.

Smaller dogs are generally better for senior citizens. They are easier to manage and pick up after. Senior citizens are more into walking and jogging now than ever before for health reasons so having an active companion like a dog seems like a good idea. My first choice would be a mix breed from the local SPCA. They have some of the best dogs and a knowledgeable staff that can help you find what you need and at an affordable price. They screen all of the dogs and let you know the ones that you would be happy with. A few good breeds for seniors are:

The Yorkshire Terrier
Boston Terrier
Miniature Poodle
Pug
Miniature Schnauzer
Shih Tzu
It a great thing to a senior to adopt a dog. There’s much love and affection to be had here.

Remember, your pets count!

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Administering Pet Medication

Saturday, August 19, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

dogpillsMy older cat Molly requires several medications to help control her thyroid and kidney disease. Twice a day I line up Molly’s medications on the counter and become what seems like a mad scientist, mixing the proper doses into her food.

It’s imperative that you distribute the medication as prescribed by your vet. Never over or underdose and make sure that you administer the medication at the prescribed times.  Sometimes, it becomes necessary to change the time that the medication is administered. If this occurs, don’t skip the medication but rather administer it as close to the prescribed time as possible.

Make sure that your pet is taking their medication. Our little friends can be sneaky when it comes to taking their meds. I would place Molly’s thyroid pill into a pill pocket and give it to her. I would see that she was eating the pill pocket so I walked away only later to find the pill pocket gone and her little pink pill lying on the floor.

I had to develop a strategy. So I now give Molly, her pill before I feed her. I encourage her to eat her “greenie”(the tasty pill pocket containing the pill) and stay there to make sure that she swallows it. I tell  her that she’s good girl and then feed her. This seems to be working fine until Molly comes up with another way to trick me!

Monitor the medication carefully and if you notice anything such as lethargy, lack of appetite etc., always consult your vet immediately.

Remember, your pets count!

 

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How To Take Care of A Very Young Kitten

Thursday, August 17, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

babykittenbottleTaking care of a baby kitten is no easy task. It will need to be bottle fed every two to three hours day and night for several weeks. You can find kitten milk replacement in special bottles at your local pet store. Hold the kitten gently and burp him after each feeding. Keep your kitten warm, clean and dry. Experts recommend placing a heating pad under one corner of the nesting box so the kitten can stay warm and can move away if it gets too warm. After each feeding ,gently stimulate the kitten’s bottom to encourage elimination. Kittens cannot do this on their own until they are about four weeks old. You can do this with a sterile cotton ball dipped in warm water. Hold off on any cat treats until your kitten is about eight weeks old.

Remember, your pets count!

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Dogs that lick and chew at their paws.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

dog-licking-pawIf your dog continuously chews, licks or picks at his paws, it may not be something physical. He could have obsessive compulsive disorder. Many times it’s called lick granuloma. This is a  form of self-trauma where the dog continuously licks a small area, most commonly the paw  becomes raw and inflamed. This behavior is related to stress, boredom or compulsiveness.

This excessive licking can cause tissue damage and delay healing. If you notice that your dog is licking or biting his paws, check them to make sure there’s no damage. If you notice that your dog has a minor cut or abrasion on his paw, wash the foot with an antiseptic soap and apply a topical antibiotic cream. If the laceration seems deeper, it can cause limping and you could see that your dog is actually in pain when he walks. Have him examined by a vet. If you dogs paw is just dry, apply vitamin E cream.

Obsessive compulsive disorder may be difficult to diagnose in a dog. I would recommend talking to your vet who may be able to direct you to the proper person to help with the diagnosis.

Remember, your pets count!

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The Important Omega 6 Fatty Acid

Monday, August 14, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

brownpupFatty acids are specific poly unsaturated fats that keep your dog’s coat and skin shiny and healthy. One class, the omega 6 fatty acid are especially important to an animal’s health because they help support the immune system and help regulate the blood flow. Fatty acids are not automatically produced by your dog’s body, so they must be provided in their diet. They’re naturally found in animal fats and vegetable oils and most commercial dog foods contain the proper types and ratios. Some dogs with skin problems and certain health conditions may benefit from fatty acid supplements so ask your vet for a recommendation. He or she may suggest adding sunflower oil to your pets food.

Remember, your pets count!

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Should You Feed a Stray Cat?

Sunday, August 13, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

straycatAs you know, I have two cats that have been with me for many years. Lately there’s a gray cat that is lame in one leg that’s been coming around and sitting on our porch. Being an animal lover, I felt the need to give this poor cat some food. For the past several weeks, I’ve been leaving a bowl of dry food on the porch for him. Sure enough, he comes the same time every day for is daily dinner.

Should we feed stray cats? Here’s my take on this. My answer is yes, of course you should feed a stray if he’s been around your house, porch or yard. Cats have become domesticated  and really can’t fend for themselves too well outside. They need some human intervention.

You’ll usually find strays eating from garbage cans. Once and awhile, they may find and eat a mouse. In general, most stray cats are starving, especially in winter.

Some people won’t feed a stray cat because they feel that they will breed out of control. Wrong! The truth is that cats will breed whether they are fed or not. Millions of cats have been abandoned by their owners. Many of these strays once had comfortable homes and were fed regular meals.

So when my new little friend comes by everyday, I make sure that he has plenty of food and water plus my cat Millie loves him. She waits by the sliders every night  for him to come and have his dinner!

Remember, your pets count!

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