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Two Tips For New Lizard Owners

Posted by on 7:35 am in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on Two Tips For New Lizard Owners

Owning a pet can be a highly rewarding experience, but there are many people that may not be particularly attracted to the idea of owning dogs or cats. Whether this is due to personal taste or living somewhere that bans these animals, a pet lizard may be an excellent alternative. While these pets can be low maintenance, it is an unfortunate fact that new lizard owners may make some mistakes when caring for these animals. To avoid some common errors, you should use the following two tips. Allow The Lizard Time To Adjust It can be easy to want to show off your lizard or to spend hours watching it. However, you should be aware that the first few days in its new environment can be rather stressful for it. As a result, you should make sure to allow the lizard plenty of privacy to explore and adjust to the new surroundings. To help with this process, you should make sure to have something in the cage that the lizard can hide under. While you may want to be able to see your lizard, it is important for it to have a space that it can use to rest. Use A Calendar To Create A Cleaning Schedule Lizards may be low maintenance, but cleaning the terrarium is an unavoidable part of owning these animals. Unfortunately, many people can forget to clean the lizards environment on a regular basis, and this simple mistake can both lower your lizards quality of life and lead to potentially serious infections and other health complications. To make sure you never accidentally miss a cleaning, you should make sure to always mark on a calendar the days that the habitat will need to be cleaned. Typically, this will need to be done at least once every couple of weeks, but the exact needs will vary based on the type of lizard that you own. While cleaning the terrarium can be a rather unpleasant task, failing to do this basic task can making your lizard’s skin more likely to be covered with harmful bacteria, which can make handling your pet a far more dangerous task than necessary. Caring for your pet lizard does not have to be a difficult or confusing task. If you have never owned a lizard, remembering these two tips should help you to avoid some mistakes that can lower the quality of life that your new pet will...

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What To Expect When Your Female Animals Are Expecting: How Vets Perform Pregnancy Checks

Posted by on 9:44 am in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on What To Expect When Your Female Animals Are Expecting: How Vets Perform Pregnancy Checks

If you have a pet or farm animal that you suspect is pregnant (or one that you are hoping is pregnant), then you will want to engage the veterinary services of an experienced and qualified vet. Depending on the size of the animal, the pregnancy check is very different for each kind of animal. Here is what you can expect, based upon the size and type of animal you want checked for pregnancy. Pregnancy Checks for Horses and Cows Pregnancy checks on cows are often done by placing a gloved hand and arm into the cow’s rectum. Because the cow’s rectum rests over the top of the uterus (and the uterus should not be disturbed during a pregnancy), the vet is able to palpate the uterus through the rectum and lower colon. A hard and/or enlarged uterus tells the vet that your cow is indeed pregnant. Horses may be checked for pregnancy the same way, but many mares resist this method. Thankfully, if your vet has a mobile fetal ultrasound for horses, your mare can be checked for pregnancy using this piece of equipment. The ultrasound camera is much smaller and less invasive than a human arm and hand, and the camera can be inserted directly into the mare’s vagina to get a clearer picture of the uterus and its contents. Pregnancy Checks on Sheep, Pigs, Goats and other Medium-Sized Livestock On these medium-sized farm animals, a pregnancy check involves feeling around the animal’s abdomen and listing for signs of life inside the abdomen.  A hard, stretched abdomen, as well as teats that may begin trickling milk, are signs that your sheep, pigs, goats or other female livestock are expecting. The vet may also use a stethoscope to listen for additional heartbeats and/or fetal movement. Pregnancy Checks on Cats and Dogs Pregnancy checks on cats and dogs are a little bit different than pregnancy checks on medium-sized livestock simply because dogs and cats are easier to transport into the vet’s clinic. Once your pet is in the clinic, the vet may conduct some of the same tests done on pregnant livestock, but with the addition of blood tests and maybe even an x-ray to confirm the presence of (and number of) babies. If an x-ray is performed, then the vet may even be able to see if the babies are in trouble or see if your mama pet may need help with the delivery. Pregnancy Checks on Smaller Mammalian Pets Unfortunately the only way a vet can check your small mammalian pets for pregnancy is through a blood test. Palpation could harm the babies if they are present, and there are no ultrasounds made small enough to check rats, mice, hamsters, guinea pigs, etc., for pregnancy. X-rays are also not much help, since they would be very difficult to read if the mother pet is still in the early stages of her pregnancy. With these small pets, it is often a waiting game and watching for signs of pregnancy and motherhood....

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Helpful Information About A Pregnant Chihuahua

Posted by on 9:41 am in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on Helpful Information About A Pregnant Chihuahua

Do you have a chihuahua who has been resting a lot lately? Prompt attention from a veterinarian is in the best interest of your dog, as she might be pregnant and need to be closely monitored until the puppies are delivered. Below, learn a few helpful things that will help you cope with your chihuahua being pregnant so you will know what to expect along the way.  How Does a Dog Behave When Pregnant? Besides laying around and resting all day, you might also notice that your pet seems to spend time in the same spot all of the time. For instance, she might stay hidden in a corner inside your home or on the porch if she is not a house pet. You will also notice that your chihuahua is a lot moodier than she used to be. She might bark a lot and become irritable if someone tries to play with her. You might also notice a change in her appetite, as well as frequent vomiting. Why Does a Pregnant Chihuahua Need Attention from a Veterinarian? The first reason for making a prompt appointment with a vet for your chihuahua is so she can be properly diagnosed with being pregnant. The vet will also examine your pet to determine if she is ill in any way so that it can be treated without harming the growing puppies. The most important reason your chihuahua needs attention from a vet is because of her body size, as being pregnant with multiple puppies can end up causing her harm if not monitored the right way. For instance, she might need to undergo a C-section at an animal hospital when her stomach reaches a certain size. Early admission into the animal hospital for close monitoring until delivery will likely be necessary if your pet requires a C-section. What Will Be Charged for a Chihuahua to Have a C-Section? If your chihuahua is further along in the pregnancy than you think and needs to undergo an immediate C-section, you will end up spending more money. The overall health condition of your pet will determine how long she will need to remain in the hospital. You should be prepared to pay at least $500 for a non-emergency C-section to be performed. The procedure can cost up to $2,000 on the highest end of the scale. Contact a veterinarian (such as one from All Care Pet Hospital of Harbour Point) about how your chihuahua has been behaving so he or she can determine if she is pregnant or...

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Three Reasons To Avoid Online Pet Pharmacies

Posted by on 12:05 pm in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on Three Reasons To Avoid Online Pet Pharmacies

Online pet pharmacies claim to offer convenience and lower prices on pet medications than the local veterinarian’s office. However, there are several reasons you should skip the online pet pharmacies and stick to buying medications for your pet in person from your veterinarian. If you are considering shopping online for pet medications, consider the following information before making a purchase. Counterfeit Medications The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has investigated many online pet pharmacies, discovering that many of these pharmacies sell counterfeit products. All of these products are dangerous to pets, however, pain reliever medications and heartworm preventatives are especially dangerous to give to pets without the oversight of a licensed veterinarian. Counterfeit products are made with no quality control, and there is no way for pet owners to know what substances are actually in these products. The products may be full of harmful chemicals, and may also lack the actual medicinal properties that are essential to keep pets healthy. It is actually cheaper to buy approved medications from your local vet, so you can be sure that your pet is being treated properly and you won’t have to go back later to fix a medical issue that you thought you were preventing with regular medication for your pet. Expired & Improperly Stored Medications Online pet pharmacies do not go through the same channels a licensed veterinarian goes through to obtain the products they sell. Some online pet pharmacies buy old stock from veterinarians or products with dubious origins. This can lead to consumers purchasing pet medications that are nearing or past their expiration dates. These medications may also be stored improperly. Improper storage in extreme heat, extreme cold or dirty storage conditions can render the medication ineffective at best, and deadly to your pet at worst. Since there is no way to know the chain of custody for the medications sold at online pet pharmacies, it is best to protect your pet’s health and purchase from your local veterinarian. Local vets usually purchase directly from the manufacturer, or from a licensed distributor, so you can be sure that your pet’s medications are fresh and properly stored. Overseas Pharmacies Several online pet pharmacies are located outside of the United States. As a result, there is no control of these pharmacies by the FDA. With this lack of oversight, these pharmacies are free to sell medications that are expired, diluted, or otherwise tampered with. These pharmacies also sell medications that require prescriptions, without requiring customers to provide an actual prescription from the pet’s doctor. This can result in customers getting the wrong type of medication for their pet, which can ultimately result in a sick pet, a large veterinarian bill and even death for a beloved furry family member. Avoid pet pharmacies that are based outside the United States, and those that do not require a prescription for medications that are only sold by prescription. Contact a local vet, like Spring Hill Veterinary Clinic, for your pet’s medication...

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Keeping Your Cat Safe During The Holiday Season

Posted by on 8:03 pm in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on Keeping Your Cat Safe During The Holiday Season

The abundance of the holiday season can present health risks and other dangers for your cat. Foods that are perfectly suitable (at least in moderation) for pet owners can prove harmful or fatal for their feline companions. Other non-edible items might be consumed by a cat just because they look or smell inviting. Cats are also more exposed to additional physical danger around the holiday season because of the arrival of numerous family members and other visitors. Foods that can be harmful or fatal to your cat Alcohol- Mixed with a tempting beverage or given to a cat by a drunken prankster, alcohol can cause coma or death in small quantities. Caffeine- It can be fatal in sufficient quantities, and although a cat may not be interested in coffee, tea, or other caffeinated drinks, it can be consumed in unusual ways.  Coffee grounds mixed with discarded food in a trash container may prove tempting to a cat. Chocolate- Although cats are not usually interested, uninformed guests, particular children, may offer chocolate as a treat. While the caffeine in chocolate is harmful in itself, the real culprit is theobromine, which can be fatal in sufficient quantities. Darker chocolate has the highest levels of this toxic agent. Raisins- A staple of many holiday treats, raisins, along with grapes, can cause kidney failure in cats. Onions – While a cat is not likely to eat either raw or cooked onions, even foods prepared with onion powder can be harmful or fatal in sufficient quantities. Yeast Dough- If a cat eats a piece of dough that hasn’t yet risen, it will rise and expand in their stomach. In addition, yeast causes fermentation in the stomach, producing alcohol and possible alcohol poisoning. Non-edibles that are harmful to your cat if chewed or consumed Plants – The most popular plants around the holiday season, mistletoe, holly, and poinsettias, are all poisonous to cats. All varieties of lilies are extremely poisonous to cats, including flowers, leaves, and stems. Decorative materials – Colorful tinsel and ribbon can be ingested by a cat in a playful mood, which may result in an intestinal blockage that can prove deadly if not treated immediately at an veterinary hospital. Artificial snow that is sprayed on windows or trees is toxic to cats if consumed. The dangers presented by holiday visitors Some cats are extremely sensitive to excessive noise, and may run outside and into dangers such as cars and other animals. Cold weather presents additional risks, as cats climb under the hood of visitors’ vehicles to warm themselves by the heat of the engine. When the car is turned on ,the cat may be injured or killed. The addition of multiple vehicles also enhances the danger of antifreeze leaking from a vehicle’s overflow tank and onto a driveway or parking space. Ethylene glycol, the main component, is toxic to pets. While cats won’t usually drink it like dogs, they will lick it from their feet when they walk in it.  Being a cat owner means being especially vigilant in keeping your cat safe during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, and keeping the catnip mouse hidden away until Christmas morning so an impatient feline doesn’t open their present before the big day. Contact a local vet, like Ashworth Road...

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5 Steps to Relieve Clogged Anal Sacs in Your Small Dog

Posted by on 11:04 am in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on 5 Steps to Relieve Clogged Anal Sacs in Your Small Dog

Have you ever wondered why dogs always greet other dogs by smelling their rear ends? It’s because they have anal sacs that excrete odors that are unique to each dog. Each time dogs have a bowel movement, the anal sacs are emptied. Occasionally, the anal sacs can become clogged—which can cause the sacs to fill with fluid. When that happens, your dog can experience a feeling of fullness or discomfort. Small dogs are prone to anal sac clogs. If your dog is scooting around the yard on its bottom, it may have clogged anal sacs. Here are some easy-to-follow instructions that will help you drain the sacs. Head for the Tub The fluid inside the anal sacs can be quite pungent. You’re going to want to wash your dog as soon as you’re done draining the fluid. Therefore, the bathtub is the best place to drain your dogs’ anal sacs. If your dog refuses to get inside the tub, take your pet outside and place a bucket filled with warm, sudsy water near you. Wear the Appropriate Attire Draining the anal sacs can get messy. You’ll need to wear something that you don’t mind getting dirty or throwing away afterwards. You’ll also need to wear a pair of rubber surgical gloves, which you can purchase at any drug store. Assume the Position Have your dog stand up. Kneel down at your dog’s side. Holding a cloth or paper towel, place one hand in front of your dog’s anus. The cloth will allow you catch the fluid as it is excreted from the sacs. Don’t kneel in back of your dog, or you may get covered in secretions. Drain the Sacs Carefully place your thumb and index finger on opposite sides of your dogs’ anal opening. You should feel two sacs about the size of peas. Press down on those sacs and move your finger and thumb upward towards the anus. You should see a mucus-type discharge flow from your dogs’ anus. Continue pressing until there is no more discharge. Call the Vet If you can’t get any secretions from the anal sacs or they don’t empty completely, you should contact a veterinarian. In some cases, anal sacs can become infected, which may require surgical assistance. Anal sacs usually empty on their own. Occasionally, they can become clogged by hair or body oils. If your dog is exhibiting signs of discomfort—such as increased scooting or licking—it may need to have its anal sacs emptied. Contact a facility like the Northwest Animal Hospital for further information or to set up an appointment for your...

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Getting Your First Dog: Tips For Easing A Pup Into Apartment Life

Posted by on 11:42 am in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on Getting Your First Dog: Tips For Easing A Pup Into Apartment Life

If you’re getting ready to move into your first apartment, you might be considering the benefits of having a dog to keep you company. Whether you’ve got your eye on those pitbulls for sale down the road or you’re thinking about adoption, there are a few things you need to consider. Here are some tips to ease your pup’s transition into a new home. Don’t Limit Yourself to Small Breeds Unless you’re renting an apartment with a weight limit for pets, don’t limit your search to just small breeds. You might think that little dogs are best for apartment spaces, but they aren’t always the best choice. In fact, some small dog breeds are ill-suited for apartments because they can be too vocal. Also, some small breeds are very high-energy or suffer from anxiety, which can make apartment living a challenge. Some of the medium to large breeds can actually be a better fit than you’d think in an apartment. Sometimes, larger breeds are more relaxed than smaller dogs, making them a calmer household member. If you’re interested in a larger dog that’s more likely to relax all day than run around, he or she may be a better fit than a smaller breed that’s going to have too much energy from being cooped up. Make Your Apartment a Dog-Friendly Environment Consider how a dog is most likely to maneuver in your apartment when you’re choosing your furniture. Decorate in a way that leaves plenty of floor space for your pup so that he or she can move around at will. You might even want to consider a bench seat in front of a window so your dog can curl up and watch people passing by on the street. Don’t Underestimate the Value of a Trainer If you want to stay on good terms with the landlord while still having a dog to keep you company, consider investing in a dog trainer. The trainer can help your dog acclimate to apartment living, and may be able to help you deal with specific problem behaviors, such as excessive barking. Getting your first pet is an exciting opportunity. If you want the relationship to be a happy one, though, you need to be sure you get the right dog for your needs. With the tips presented here, you can find the right dog for your apartment and even help him or her to be more comfortable in the new...

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Boarding Your Pet Parrot

Posted by on 9:16 am in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on Boarding Your Pet Parrot

There may come a time when you will need someone to temporarily look after your parrot. If your bird is used to having your around or is used to lot of activity, then it may be hard to keep him happy at home alone. Many pet boarding facilities will take in birds and other exotic pets. Good candidates for boarding: The best candidates for boarding are parrots who are gregarious and like a lot of activity. They should like to be around people and other birds and don’t mind some handling. However, even birds that aren’t as social or are shy can sometimes be boarded depending on the facility. Candidates that are not ideal include birds that are aggressive, can’t be handled, frequently bite or are unusually destructive. Requirements for boarding: A recent check-up with a veterinarian that includes blood work and/or fecal testing is required. Birds should be free of all diseases and parasites. Some facilities will handle birds with certain illnesses and on medications, but not contagious birds. Your bird’s wings should be clipped to protect both him and the other birds. Also, your bird should be accustomed to being in a cage for at least part of the day. Cages are often provided at the facility, but some require you to bring your own cage and a toy. Services that boarders may provide: Services vary based on the type of facility. Most facilities will provide healthy food, cage cleaning and daily interaction. Some facilities may offer extras such as grooming and behavior modification. Though not all facilities have veterinary staff onsite full time, most have a doctor on call for emergencies. Questions to ask about boarding: Ask for a tour of the facility and observe how staff interacts with the birds. Ask about whether your bird will be allowed some time outside the cage. See if the bird will be interacting with other birds. Find out if people, other than the staff, will have access to your bird. Ask about handling shy birds or about keeping your bird away from other birds or excessive handling. A good boarding facility will try to work with your parrot’s personality and not subject him or her to excessive stress. Some parrots find boarding to be a fun, exciting experience and will adapt quickly. Boarding a gregarious parrot that is used to daily activity may be a good option if you need to go away for a while. Even if your parrot is not very social, he or she may still benefit from being boarded. Contact a company like Marquette Animal Hospital for more...

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Preventing And Controlling Feline Periodontal Disease

Posted by on 8:52 am in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on Preventing And Controlling Feline Periodontal Disease

Those sweet meows and scratchy tongue aren’t the only things that come from your cat’s mouth. Chances are, there’s bacteria that could lead to tooth decay and periodontal (gum) disease. In fact, periodontal disease is the most common disease in cats over the age of 3.  85 percent of cats over the age of 6 are affected. Make sure your veterinarian is checking your kitty’s teeth at every visit — and make sure you’re scheduling regular checkups so that dental and other health problems don’t go undetected. How Do I Know If My Cat’s Teeth Are Okay? The truth is, you might not notice anything that suggests your cat is developing periodontal disease. That’s why it’s so important to take your feline friend to a veterinarian or cat dentist regularly. You may notice changes in appetite, particularly bad breath or face swelling as indicators that there’s something going on with kitty’s teeth and gums. Make an appointment to see your veterinarian if you notice any of these signs, or if your cat has any mouth wounds or bleeding from the mouth. What Can I Do at Home? The best way to prevent periodontal disease is to brush your cat’s teeth at home. It’s best to start this process when your cat is very young so that he or she gets used to it. If you’ve adopted an older cat, or you’re just starting teeth brushing as a part of your regular care routine, be prepared for some pushback. Be patient and just do the best you can. After all, some brushing is better than none at all. If your cat just won’t allow you near his or her mouth, consider using an oral gel or spray to help keep oral bacteria at bay. There are even water additives you can add to your pet’s bowl daily to help keep his or her gums clean and healthy.  Avoid using only soft, canned foods. Crunchy and chewy foods help keep your cat’s teeth strong. Ask your cat’s vet about dietary options to help prevent and control oral problems. There are special foods, and even treats, available both with and without a prescription that can help keep your pet’s mouth healthy. Talk to your cat’s veterinarian about other options as well, especially if your cat is showing signs of periodontal disease. He or she may suggest your cat undergo a professional cleaning or other treatments, such as tissue regeneration procedures to rebuild the gums or bone replacement procedures, if the disease is more advanced. ...

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Dog Park Dangers: What Your Veterinarian Want You To Know

Posted by on 9:37 am in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on Dog Park Dangers: What Your Veterinarian Want You To Know

When spring and summer come around, many people are ready to get out into the outdoors to enjoy the nice weather and their extra hours of daylight that they can enjoy whether they are on vacation or working. As such, the majority of dog owners like to take their dogs out to the dog park to enjoy that pleasant weather with them. However, most veterinarians will tell you to be cautious when you take your dogs to the dog park. Get to know some of the potential dog park dangers that you will want to consider before you head out to the dog park this year.  Parvovirus Parvovirus (also known as parvo) is a highly contagious and dangerous canine virus. This virus becomes very serious very quickly as it attacks the white blood cells in the body and does severe damage to the intestinal tract. Commonly, a dog that has been exposed to and contracted parvovirus will show symptoms like severe diarrhea that smells horrible and often contains blood, excessive vomiting, no appetite, and a lack of energy. With all of the diarrhea and vomiting, the dog will likely get extremely dehydrated which may be life-threatening if not addressed quickly.  Parvovirus is transmitted through the feces of infected dogs. Anything, including a person, that comes into contact with those infected feces can be a carrier, sometimes for months. So, if an infected dog goes to the dog park and defecates, any dog that comes into contact with even the grass they defecated on, may contract the virus. Be sure to check that your dog is up-to-date on their parvo vaccine before you even consider taking them to a dog park. And if you have a puppy under the age of between six and eight weeks, do not take them around other dogs or to the dog park as they are too young to be vaccinated. Fleas and Ticks Fleas affect many different animals, not just domestic pets. Rabbits, squirrels, and other animals that may enter a dog park (as well as other dogs) may carry fleas which can infest your dog at the dog park. Additionally, anytime you go outdoors in the summer, there is a chance that you and your dog will encounter ticks. In a dog park where there are tall plants, trees, and wild grasses, their presence is even more likely.  While fleas and ticks are annoying and may cause serious discomfort (especially fleas), they can also carry serious diseases. Dogs, as well as humans, can get Lyme disease from ticks. Fleas carry diseases such as the plague, tapeworms, and a red blood cell disease known as haemobartonellosis.  Before you head to the dog park, make sure your dog is protected against fleas and ticks. Additionally, check your dog thoroughly for ticks after a trip to the dog park to prevent them from contracting Lyme disease or other issues. Now that you know a few of the potential dangers of going to a dog park, you can make the right decision for you and your dog. And if you do decide to go to the dog park, you know how to protect your dog from these dangers....

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