Have you heard of Canine Influenza? Like the flu that can cause us misery any time of year, this virus is a highly contagious, airborne illness that can affect the respiratory system of your dog if he is exposed. Recently, a number of cases have been reported and confirmed in Lancaster County, triggering the temporary closure of several local kennels and boarding facilities. This virus is easily spread with a cough or a sneeze from an affected pet, and it can be transferred or contaminate any surface, potentially infecting any other dog that walks through the area. While the virus can make your pet quite ill, the bright side is that it is rarely fatal. Here are some other quick facts about Canine Influenza you should know. Read More »
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Like the human foot, your dog’s paws are designed by nature to function to protect leg bones and joints from the impact of walking, running, and jumping. The specialized calloused tissue of the pads form a protective barrier against hot and cold and help your dog to grip terrain as they explore. We’re fortunate to have a plethora of shoe styles to protect our feet, and the luxury of going for periodic foot pampering sessions and exams to ensure that our feet can do their job effectively. Did you know that there are lots of easy things you can do at home for your pet to keep his paws in prime condition too? Take a look below to learn some simple ways to keep your pet’s peds happy and healthy year round. Read More »
So you got a new puppy or adopted a new forever friend and now you’re in a mad dash to find the perfect accessories for your new pet. It seems like it should be an easy thing to do, but your choice may not be so cut-and-dry once you’re faced with a row of products to pick from. Lets talk a little about some of the popular products and maybe the decision making process will be a little easier for you.
There are lots of different collars on the market made of lots of different materials and designed to help you best handle your pet. You can find collars constructed of nylon, rubber, vinyl, leather, recycled materials, natural fiber like hemp or bamboo, or metal; some are embellished with gems, ribbons or other decorations. Typically, the material of the collar is choosen for durability and to appeal to you, the handler. These materials are also used to provide the ultimate comfort to your pet. For the most part these materials are inert, but on rare occasions dogs with sensitive skin or skin allergies may develop skin irritations to some materials. If you notice frequent itching or irritation around your pet’s neck, you may need to consider a collar of a different style or material. A collar of any of these materials can have a long life…but your choice should be influenced by your dog’s personality and lifestyle. The most popular collars are basic, reliable woven (or leather) with either metal or plastic buckles. These collars are easy to adjust, easy to clean, and perfect for everyday wear. Rubber and rubber-coated “ultimate” collars share a similar design, but are resistant to water, odors and stains, great for swimmers or sporting dogs! Read More »
I spend a lot of time with my phone. Probably too much time, to be honest. I rely on it for everything from deciding what restaurant to try this weekend to communicating with clients. While I don’t always like being connected to my phone 24/7, it does have its advantages, especially when you’re on the run with dogs in tow! I thought it might be fun to open up my phone and share with you the apps that I use most for my pets. Read More »
Despite the recent mild weather I am already scouring the closets in my house for Barret’s winter wardrobe. With the growing potential for snow on the ground and the little guy’s reluctance to step past the front door these days, i guess it is time to find the dog jackets and coats. Many people think that since dogs have a fur coat, that they don’t need any additional winter gear. This is true for some dog breeds, but others, like Barret, have very thin, short coats and appreciate the extra layer of warmth when braving the great outdoors.
I know a lot of people that think I dress him up just for fun, and that is only partially true. While it is fun for me to parade him around in stylish duds, it serves a very important purpose. The extra layers can be comforting to a dog that is particularly sensitive to cold weather. Dogs like Barret need the warmth of a coat, like a child venturing out in winter to play, to keep their temp up and their immune system strong. The extra layers help to conserve body heat, so your dog doesn’t have to work as hard to stay warm when outside, or even when hanging around the house.
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Insect stings are probably not the first hazard you consider when you and your pet are enjoying the outdoors. While most stings are not life threatening, there are several factors that can mean the difference between an itchy lump and a trip to the emergency vet. Stings can occur anytime, though they are obviously more common during warmer months when insects are more active. It’s important to know how to recognize reactions and symptoms of stings so you know how to treat them and when to seek veterinary attention.
When I was a teenager, fall was the time for firewood collection in the wooded lot behind my family’s home. It seemed simple enough, we used a tractor and cart, collecting wood from fallen trees as my father sliced them into fireplace-sized logs to warm us through winter. Collection trips were family affairs: me, my parents, siblings and several of the family dogs who would romp through the underbrush and creek beds in search of wayward squirrels, muskrats and other wildlife to chase. The chill in the air that brought an end to humid summer days lulled the woods into a quiet dormancy, but not everything had quieted for the winter on one particular evening — and an unfortunate disturbance spurred a night to remember. Read More »
Summertime is full of opportunities for most of us to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather. But as we all know, that searing summer sun can be intense and in the search for some reprieve we often find ourselves poolside, in local stream, river, lake or on the beach. If you’re like me, you likely have your pet along, too. My pup is a water-lover; if there is a way for her to get wet she will be. While it’s always fun having her along to play or go for a swim, it’s also important to keep any pet’s safety in mind while on, in or near water. Here are some things to keep in mind as you splash through summer with your favorite four-legged companion. Read More »
Parasites can afflict pets any time of the year, however during the spring and summer months, they tend to be more prevalent. Our pets spend a lot more time outside when the weather is warm, and parasites breed more readily. Even if your pets spend all or most of their time indoors, it is possible for parasites to find them whether carried in on our clothes or by crawling through our screen doors. Here are some common parasites to look out for and ways to combat them this summer. Read More »
Recently, my 14 year old female cockatiel, Charlie was pacing at the bottom of her cage (her usual method of begging to be let out) when she got her leg caught in the grating of the cage. Panicked, I raced forward to help her, but unfortunately my bird’s panic took over and she injured her leg trying to free herself. I knew immediately she had broken it because she could not use it at all and there was blood on her perch, indicating that the bone had gone through the skin. I rushed her to the emergency vet and 4 hours and $360 later, she was ready to go home, dressed in a splint and bird sized e-collar. She’s recovering well, which is great news, however the cost of this endeavor got me to thinking: would pet insurance be worth the investment? Read More »
Toys. Does anything else fill a dog’s eyes with such excitement? The anticipation, the hours of playing, tugging, fetching, and squeaking than ensue is an essential part of a dog’s livelihood. Without toys, there’d be many more shredded pillows, gnawed-on furniture, and generally stressed out dogs. Toys may seem like a luxury item, but dogs need toys to help relieve stress, boredom, and encourage instinctual behavior. However, buyer beware: not all toys are created equal.
Choosing toys for your dog can be a fun, rewarding experience for many owners. There are a few things that every pet owner should keep in mind when in the midst of the toy aisle surrounded by furry plush, squeaks and grunts, bright colors and fun. Read More »