Knowing When To Get Help

Exploring The Nutrition Needs Of A Young Cat

Posted by on September 28, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Exploring The Nutrition Needs Of A Young Cat

Whether it’s the first kitten to ever grace the home or the tenth cat over the years, it is important to recognize and know what their precise nutritional needs are. There is a difference between what a young cat and an adult need to be at their very best. Here are some things to keep in mind. Mother’s Milk For the first few weeks of a young cat’s life, they get all their nutrients from their mother’s milk. Kittens will receive fat, proteins, vitamins and minerals necessary for them to grow at the rapid pace young cats often experience. As they are weaned off their mother’s milk, the pet owner must take over the responsibility of providing all the things essential for a healthy lifestyle. Protein As a young cat grows, it needs protein in order to have a strong, healthy body. Proteins helps the body do all of its best work. It lends strength to healthy developing bones, cells, and tissues and aids in forming balanced hormones. Protein encourages the growth of antibodies to fight off sickness and enzymes to make sure the body is maturing properly. The best source of this vital material for a cat is chicken. Fat When it comes to growing, a kitten’s body doesn’t need a little bit of energy, it needs a lot of it. The best way to give felines the energy they need is to make sure they are getting high-quality fatty acids. The family kitten can get this material by making sure their food has large amounts of Omega 3’s and 6’s in it. These fatty acids also make the cat’s fur soft and shiny as well as helping the kidneys function properly. Water Water is one of the most important resources on the planet. Without it, no living thing can thrive, and young cats need access to be able to grow up healthy and strong. Kittens tend to be wobbly, so be sure to use a small, shallow bowl to keep them from drowning if they fall into the water. Vitamins, Minerals, and Supplements It can be tempting to give young pets supplements. They seem to be on every shelf at the pet store and can be easily found online. However, a young cat should get the majority of their needs from good quality kitten food. Before trying to convince them to lick vitamin paste off a finger, check with a vet to see if the cat needs a specific item. The vet can run a few quick tests and make sure their levels are alright. If you keep this information in mind, you should have no trouble giving a young cat the nutritional care it needs. For more information, contact Stewartstown Vet Services or a similar...

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Responsible Pet Ownership: Preparing For Natural Disasters And Medical Emergencies

Posted by on July 29, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Responsible Pet Ownership: Preparing For Natural Disasters And Medical Emergencies

Keeping your pet healthy and safe is your primary concern as a pet owner. Being prepared in the event of any type of emergency is essential for keeping your cat, dog, bird or other family pet safe. Use this guide to prepare for emergencies so you are ready to handle anything your pets, or life, throws at you. Prepare An Emergency Escape Plan Natural disasters can strike at any time, from fires and floods to earthquakes. Having an emergency escape plan for your pets is just as critical as having one for your family. Keep a collapsible pet carrier or crate ready in the hall closet near your home’s front and rear exits. This will make it easy to secure your pet as you leave the home. For larger animals, keep a leash, harness and muzzle on a hook next to your keys. Make sure that all your pets are accounted for as you and your family exit the home. While you don’t have to put the pets in the carriers or on leashes before you leave (especially if there is no time), grabbing these items can keep them from wondering back into the home once you are outside. Store Emergency Contact Information In Your Phone Talk to your veterinarian about which 24-hour pet hospital, like Seattle Emergency Veterinary Hospital, you should contact in the event of a medical emergency. Place the phone number and address in your phone as well as your primary vet’s contact information. You may want to save this information in a file on your phone along with your pet’s ID tag and microchip information. This will ensure you have all the information you need to take your pet in for emergency care so you can focus on taking care of your pet. Stock Your Emergency Preparedness Kit For Your Pets Many homeowners plan for disasters by creating an emergency preparedness kit, which typically includes food, water, blankets and other necessities for the humans of the house. Be sure to include items your pets will need, such as food, dishes for food and water, a warm blanket and any medication your pet takes. This will come in handy in the event of a blizzard or storm that prevents you from leaving your home. You can even purchase pre-packaged emergency kits for pets for your home, which include food bowls, water packets, chew toys and pet waste bags. Learn Pet First Aid In the event that you aren’t able to get your pet to an emergency pet care facility right away, you may be able to perform first aid to save your pet’s life. You can get CPR and first aid training for your pets at a local shelter or at an animal boarding facility. Your veterinarian may also be able to help you find classes for pet first aid. Be sure to post information about pet first aid in your home so your whole family can access it, and consider adding a list of foods your pets can’t eat so everyone can avoid a potentially harmful reaction. Work with your veterinarian to come up with an emergency plan for your pets so they stay healthy and safe, whether you face a medical emergency or a natural...

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Why Do Your Dog’s Ears Smell Gross?

Posted by on July 19, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Why Do Your Dog’s Ears Smell Gross?

Do your dog’s ears have a pungent, almost rotten smell? This is not a symptom you should ignore. Not only is the scent off-putting, but it’s usually a sign of an infection. Here’s a closer look at what causes stinky ears in dogs and what you can do about the problem. What causes stinky ears? Both bacterial and fungal infections can cause your dog’s ears to smell. If the inside of the ear has a brownish tint, the problem is usually attributable to a yeast infection. If the ears are red and you see some white or yellow pus, bacteria are likely to blame. Dogs can pick up ear infections when they come into contact with another dog who is infected or when they rub their ears against surfaces that are contaminated with bacteria or fungi. Yeast infections are sometimes perpetuated by hormonal imbalances or an excess of sugar in the diet. How are stinky ears treated? If your dog has smelly ears, it’s important to take him or her to the vet. The vet will take a swab of the ear and examine it to determine for certain whether the infection is fungal or bacterial. For a fungal infection, you may be instructed to apply a fungicide cream to your dog’s ears every day for a week or so. Bacterial infections are often treated with a combination of oral and topical antibiotics. In either case, the treatment protocol you’ll follow is about the same. You’ll need to wipe out the ears with some gauze and a cleaning solution that your vet provides. Then, you’ll need to apply a cream – whether it’s antibiotic or antifungal. Your dog’s ears should clear up within a week or so. How can you prevent stinky ears? Dogs with floppy ears, like basset hounds and beagles, are more prone to ear infections than those with pointed, open ears. This is because the floppy ear traps heat and moisture inside, making the ear a more appealing place for bacteria and yeast to grow. If your dog’s ears are floppy, lifting them up and wiping them out with a dry cloth once a day can be helpful for preventing stinky ear infections. Your vet may also recommend a special ear wash, which you can use to rinse the ears out every few days. You’ll also want to minimize contact with other dogs who are prone to ear infections, and perhaps switch your dog to a low-sugar dog food – especially if the infections have been yeast-based. For more information, contact a company like Clovis Veterinary Hospital P...

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Ultrasounds And Why Your Pet Might Need One

Posted by on July 12, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Ultrasounds And Why Your Pet Might Need One

It’s common for humans to have to undergo an ultrasound but you may not be aware that these diagnostic tests can be beneficial for your pet as well. Here are some things you will want to know when it comes to ultrasounds and why your furry friend might need one. Why an Ultrasound for Your Pet? With an ultrasound, your veterinarian will be able to see the fluid-filled organs in your pet such as the heart, bladder, liver, spleen, prostate gland, and kidney. Veterinarians often use ultrasounds in the place of invasive exploratory surgery. For pets that have anxiety and might not be able to lie still, they may need to be sedated for the procedure. Normally any animal hospital will be able to perform an ultrasound on your pet. What Symptoms Warrant an Ultrasound for Your Pet? If your pet is having certain symptoms, and your veterinarian is unable to determine a diagnosis by simply examining your furry friend, the vet may order an ultrasound. Some symptoms can indicate a serious problem such as: Chronic vomiting – could indicate the possibility of cancer, an ulcer, liver failure, bladder obstruction, or your pet may have ingested a foreign object Unexplained weight loss – could indicate liver disease, thyroid disease in cats, kidney failure, or cancer Change in urinary habits – could indicate crystals in the urine, stones in the bladder, or a urinary tract infection Since organs are seen better on an empty stomach, most veterinarians will recommend that your cat or dog abstains from eating solid food after a certain time of night. They can still, however, have as much water as they like. Another way to see the organs better is if your pet has a full bladder. While it may be hard to do, try to prevent your pet from urinating within a certain amount of time before the ultrasound. Your pet might also need to be shaved around the area the ultrasound is being performed as fur can block ultrasound waves. What Happens After an Ultrasound on Your Pet? Your pet will not have any negative side effects after this safe and noninvasive procedure. If their symptoms do not require a stay at the animal hospital, you will be able to take your pet home right away afterward. Before making a proper diagnosis, your veterinarian, such as at Lamb’s Gap Animal Hospital, will most likely gather all of your pet’s medical history, list of symptoms, and images from the ultrasound. They will then let you know if any further testing is...

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3 Tips For Helping Keep Your Dog Cool This Summer

Posted by on June 9, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Tips For Helping Keep Your Dog Cool This Summer

As the temperatures rise for the summer, you might be worried about your dog getting too hot. Luckily, following these three tips can help you help your dog beat the heat and stay as comfortable as possible when the temperatures are high. 1. Consider a New Hair Cut In the summer, it might be a good idea to let your dog try a new hair style. Just as many people who have long, thick hair complain about it being uncomfortable and making them hot during the summer, hair can make your dog hot, too. Consider talking to a professional dog groomer about your options — it might be a good idea to give your dog a cute cut or even to shave its hair off completely. Along with helping to keep your dog cool, a new style can also help cut down on the shedding that can be so prevalent during the summer months, which is great if you want to reduce the amount of dog hair that ends up on your clothing and furniture. 2. Give Your Pet a Swimming Pool Some dogs love getting in the water, but you may not be able to take your dog to a beach, pond or lake very often. Luckily, you can make it easy for your dog to cool off and have a ton of fun in your own backyard with a kiddie swimming pool. Look for one that is made out of hard plastic — rather than one that is inflatable — to help ensure that it’s strong enough to handle your dog’s toenails. You’ll also want to make sure that it’s low enough to the ground that your dog can easily get in and out of it. You may also want to keep a stack of fresh, clean towels by your back door so you can dry your dog off before you bring it in. 3. Make Up Tasty Frozen Treats Just as you might enjoy ice cream or another frozen treat when it’s hot outside, your dog might enjoy something cool and refreshing, too. Consider freezing a small toy or treat in a block of ice and allowing your dog to lick away the cool, refreshing ice, or make a tasty frozen dog treat by mixing one cup of peanut butter with half of a mashed banana and a small amount of water. Mix them together, then make cookie-sized treats out of the mixture, and drop them on a cookie sheet. After allowing them to freeze, store them in a zip-top storage bag in your freezer, and give your dog a treat anytime that you think it might like to cool down. Talk to a vet, like Columbine Animal Hospital & Emergency Clinic, for more...

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Brushing Your Dog’s Teeth: A Guide For New Dog Owners

Posted by on April 26, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Brushing Your Dog’s Teeth: A Guide For New Dog Owners

Surely you spend a lot of time caring for your own teeth, but what about your dog’s teeth? As a new dog owner, it’s important to get acquainted with the idea of brushing your dog’s teeth, since doing so can help prevent a wide array of dental problems. Here’s a closer look at the hows and whys behind canine teeth brushing. What are the benefits of brushing your dog’s teeth? Dogs’ teeth develop plaque and tartar, just like your own teeth do. This plaque can lead to tooth decay, since it harbors oral bacteria that secretes damaging acids. It can also lead to gum infections, which are not only painful for your dog, but could potentially cause tooth loss and even spread into other tissues, like the blood or heart, leading to death. By brushing your dog’s teeth, you’re removing this plaque before it has the chance to cause too much damage. The brushing motion also stimulates the gums, increasing the circulation to this area to help heal any lesions or sores that might develop. Brushing your dog’s teeth also gets him or her used to having the mouth handled, which will make it easier for your vet to get a good look in your dog’s mouth during an exam. A dog that has never had its teeth brushed will be more resistant to letting the vet look in its mouth and may require sedation to make this possible. How do you brush your dog’s teeth? Some dogs adapt to tooth brushing faster than others. If possible, you should start this routine when your dog is still a puppy. Purchase a canine toothbrush and some canine toothpaste. Do not use human toothpaste – it contains ingredients that could be harmful if your dog swallows it. Kneel in front of your dog, and stroke him to keep him calm. Let the dog lick and sniff the toothbrush. Practice touching your dog around the mouth and gently peeling the gums back to show off the teeth. If your dog seems nervous about this, then just repeat this part of the exercise for a few days until he or she is more comfortable – then start introducing actual brushing. Apply canine toothpaste to the brush, and then brush the teeth slowly and gently. It’s okay if you only get a few teeth the first time. Your dog will adapt over time, and within a week or two, you’ll be able to clean them all. For best results, make sure you brush your dog’s teeth at least 3 days a week. Daily is even better if you can manage it. Your efforts will pay off in the long run as your dog’s teeth and gums remain in good health. Contact a business, such as the All-Pets Hospital, for more...

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Purr-Fectly Pearly Whites — 5 Steps To Keeping Your Cat’s Mouth Healthy

Posted by on February 16, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Purr-Fectly Pearly Whites — 5 Steps To Keeping Your Cat’s Mouth Healthy

Practicing good dental hygiene isn’t just for people. All sorts of animals suffer from dental problems and benefit from good dental maintenance. It can be much harder to get them to participate in the process, though. Here are 5 tips for keeping your cat’s teeth in good condition. Get a yearly checkup. Your veterinarian is your best ally in keeping your cat’s teeth and gums healthy. For this reason, be sure to keep to a regular schedule of annual checkups that include a thorough dental cleaning. This process is generally more expensive than cleaning a human’s teeth because the cat is anesthetized for the cleaning. Even with this cost, though, it will be less expensive to keep the teeth in good shape than it will be to repair or pull them.  Start young. If you can, it’s best to try to establish a dental routine while the cat is young so it can acclimate to the idea. You can use a finger and some gauze or cat toothpaste to rub on the gums. Add a little oily tuna liquid on the finger to help encourage the cat to allow you to touch their mouth. Be sure to only use cat toothpaste since the fluoride in human toothpaste can make your cat seriously ill.  Try brushing. It may seem crazy, but brushing a cat’s teeth is possible. Start by using your finger as mentioned above, then graduate to cleaning with a kitty toothbrush and a little feline toothpaste. Hold the cat from behind, support the chin and lift his lips to reach the teeth. Maintain a healthy diet. As with humans, diet can make a big difference in how healthy the mouth is. For a cat, this includes a good variety of dry and wet cat foods. You can also include healthy alternatives like de-boned raw meat and even bones. Chewing on bones helps remove tartar and plaque from the teeth. Look for specially-selected raw bones but avoid pork, chicken or fish bones (these could splinter and cause injury).  Don’t forget the gums. Irritated or inflamed gums cause a great deal of tooth decay problems, so don’t ignore the cat’s gums. You can stimulate the healing process in gums by gently massaging them. Be aware of how the cat’s gums are supposed to look — pink and healthy — so you can be alert for any signs of gum disease.  By following these 5 steps, you can help ensure a long, healthy and active life for your four-legged friend. Speak with a veterinarian from a company like Chester Valley Veterinary Hospital if you have additional questions about your cat’s oral...

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The Benefits Of Spaying Your Female Kitten

Posted by on February 15, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Benefits Of Spaying Your Female Kitten

If you have just acquired a female kitten to keep as a pet, you will soon be enjoying her companionship once she gets used to her new home. Most people will bring a new kitten to a veterinarian to have a checkup to make sure they are in good health. At this time, you may be informed as to when your cat can be spayed. There are several benefits to having this procedure done, making it a definite event to consider for your new friend. Here are some of the reasons why spaying can be helpful to your cat’s health and your lifestyle. Your Cat Will Become Calmer As your kitten grows, you will notice she will start becoming restless or agitated for several days at a time. The length of a female cat’s fertile time will vary depending on what season of the year it is and whether she is mated with a male cat during her fertile time. When your cat is “in heat”, or fertile, she will display some characteristics that may become a bit annoying. She may yowl at all times of the night or try escaping the home to find a mate. You may notice your cat crawling or crouching with her back end in the air in an attempt to attract a male mate. These symptoms will cease in their entirety after you have your cat spayed. Cancer Risks Will Drop Having a female cat spayed can actually be beneficial to her health. If you get the spaying done before your cat goes into her first heat cycle, the chance of mammary cancer is dramatically dropped. Getting your kitten spayed before six months of age will reduce cancer chances by about 91%. If you wait until before the age of two, the chances are decreased to about 11%. Waiting until your cat is after the age of two will not reduce the risk of mammary cancer at all, making it beneficial to get the procedure done sooner rather than later. Fear Of Kittens Is Gone If you do not wish for your cat to become pregnant, spaying will take this event away in its entirety. Your cat will no longer be able to become pregnant, making your nights of guarding the door so she does not escape, over. This is a relief for many female cat owners as they need to constantly monitor their cat’s behavior if they do not wish for her to sneak off to mate. The procedure for spaying will be done at your veterinarian’s office and your cat may need to stay over night for observation after the surgery is completed. After she heals, she will become a bit more docile in behavior. Contact a veterinary clinic, such as the Caring Hands Animal Hospital, for more...

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4 Things Hedgehog Owners Need To Know About Contact Dermatitis

Posted by on February 5, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 4 Things Hedgehog Owners Need To Know About Contact Dermatitis

Hedgehogs can develop many skin diseases, including contact dermatitis. Here are four things hedgehog owners need to know about contact dermatitis. What are the signs of contact dermatitis in hedgehogs? If your hedgehog has contact dermatitis, you’ll notice skin symptoms. When your hedgehog develops new spines, they will experience pruritis in the area. Pruritis is a medical term that means itching. You may notice that their spines are falling out or that their skin is flaky. The skin around the base of your pet’s quills may become crusty and the quills may fall out. Seborrhea may also occur, which manifests as skin flakes or greasy patches on the skin; when people get seborrhea, it’s called dandruff. Why do hedgehogs get contact dermatitis? Hedgehogs are not particularly sanitary creatures. While some owners have success training their pets to use a litter box, hedgehogs tend to defecate and urinate anywhere they please. Since your pet is essentially living in their toilet, they are susceptible to skin irritation from constant contact with their urine and feces. To protect your pet’s skin, you need to change their bedding regularly. As a general rule, hedgehog cages need to be thoroughly cleaned once every week, though this can vary based on the type of bedding you’re using and how messy your hedgehog is. How do vets treat this condition? The treatment for contact dermatitis is quite simple. Your vet will prescribe antibiotics to kill the bacteria that are irritating your pet’s skin. Once the bacteria are gone, your pet’s skin will heal. How can you prevent a recurrence? Since this skin condition is caused by living in an unsanitary environment, you’ll need to thoroughly clean your pet’s cage. If you don’t clean their cage and get rid of the bacteria, they’ll get sick again. To get rid of bacteria, first wash all of the cage surfaces with hot, soapy water, and then rinse it well. Afterwards, disinfect all of the cage surfaces with a solution of household bleach and water. Rinse the cage with water to get rid of any bleach residue. Don’t forget to clean all of the cage accessories as well, like the water bowl, food bowl, and den. Objects that are hard to clean, like fabric beds, should be disposed of. Once the cage has been thoroughly cleaned, you can put your hedgehog back in their cage without needing to worry about a recurrence of contact dermatitis. If you think your hedgehog has contact dermatitis, take them to a vet at a place like Southwest Florida Veterinary Specialists & 24-Hour Emergency Hospital right...

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5 Ways Annual Wellness Visits Are Ideal For Your Senior Cat

Posted by on January 25, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Ways Annual Wellness Visits Are Ideal For Your Senior Cat

Bringing your cat to the vet can be a tiring experience due to their anxiety about getting in a carrier or being in an unfamiliar vet clinic. While you may want to keep your cat from being nervous by skipping the vet visit altogether, there are numerous benefits that come with visiting the vet for wellness checks. This becomes even more beneficial when your cat is over years old since they are now considered a senior. Consider the following reasons why annual wellness visits should never be skipped for your cat. Thorough Dental Exam Your cat’s teeth are often a part of their overall health that is often skipped, especially since most cats do not like having anyone near their mouth. While you may not be able to make much progress with handling your cat’s teeth, your vet will be able to give their mouth a quick exam and bring up any potential dental issues that need to be addressed. Help with Maintaining Healthy Weight Keeping your cat at a healthy weight can be challenge if you are still uncertain about whether or not they are overweight currently. Many cat owners believe that their cat is at a healthy weight, only to discover that they are overweight upon visiting the veterinarian for a checkup. By visiting the vet regularly and keeping track of any weight gains or losses, your vet can help make sure that your cat is at the right weight for their size, breed, and age. Answers to Any Behavior Questions If you have not brought your cat in a long time, you may have some lingering questions in mind regarding behavioral issues such as excessive scratching of the furniture or mewing loudly during the night. Your visit to the vet can help ensure that you get answers to any questions you may have. Checkup for Any Serious Problems Similar to humans, senior cats are at a higher risk of potential health issues. With this in mind, it is best to visit the vet regularly so that any potential issues can be diagnosed before it is too late. Vaccines Can Be Done as Well Proper vaccinations should be taken care of regularly to ensure that your cat is healthy—especially if they are frequently around other cats and spend time outdoors. With vaccines for rabies, feline leukemia, Bordetella, and more, it is best to visit your vet to get a list of which vaccines your senior cat needs and how frequently. Bringing your cat in to the vet once a year may seem unnecessary, but it can come with a number of great benefits once your cat has reached their senior years. With the above benefits in mind, you can schedule their first visit to an office likeMetropolitan Cat Hospital Limited with...

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