Firework Safety Tips for Pets

   Here are some tips for getting your furry kids through the Independence Day hullabaloo:      Tire them out! Take your dog on an extra-long hike, throw the ball, or have a rousing game of chase-the-feather with your kitty. If they're exhausted, they will be less affected by the noise.      Let them hide. Give them a safe, cozy spot to get away from all the commotion. You can even play classical music or turn the TV on to help block the noise.      Keep pets indoors. Close all doors, pet doors, windows, and curtains/blinds if possible. Run a fan or turn on the air conditioning if possible for background noise. If your pet is in a crate, cover the crate with a blanket.      Make sure all doors and gates are secure and your pets all have tags and/or microchips just in case. When pets are in a panic, they can become escape artists.      Consider purchasing a      Thundershirt     . These pet shirts are designed to apply pressure to your pet's body like a hug. This pressure helps to calm the nervous system. Several of our clients have used these with good results.      Another resource that we've had some clients use successfully is noise cancelling headphones, called      Mutt Muffs     , for pets.      Reassure your pets. Maybe even give a few treats when the noise begins. You want to comfort your pets if they are asking for reassurance, but be sure to stay calm and behave as if everything is fine. If you act anxious, they will pick up on your stress.      Puzzle toys, like a Kong, can be great distractions during fireworks.      If loud noises make your pet extremely anxious, you may want to consider a sedative. Call our office to see if that would be a good option for your fuzzy kid.

Here are some tips for getting your furry kids through the Independence Day hullabaloo:

Tire them out! Take your dog on an extra-long hike, throw the ball, or have a rousing game of chase-the-feather with your kitty. If they're exhausted, they will be less affected by the noise.

Let them hide. Give them a safe, cozy spot to get away from all the commotion. You can even play classical music or turn the TV on to help block the noise.

Keep pets indoors. Close all doors, pet doors, windows, and curtains/blinds if possible. Run a fan or turn on the air conditioning if possible for background noise. If your pet is in a crate, cover the crate with a blanket.

Make sure all doors and gates are secure and your pets all have tags and/or microchips just in case. When pets are in a panic, they can become escape artists.

Consider purchasing a Thundershirt. These pet shirts are designed to apply pressure to your pet's body like a hug. This pressure helps to calm the nervous system. Several of our clients have used these with good results.

Another resource that we've had some clients use successfully is noise cancelling headphones, called Mutt Muffs, for pets.

Reassure your pets. Maybe even give a few treats when the noise begins. You want to comfort your pets if they are asking for reassurance, but be sure to stay calm and behave as if everything is fine. If you act anxious, they will pick up on your stress.

Puzzle toys, like a Kong, can be great distractions during fireworks.

If loud noises make your pet extremely anxious, you may want to consider a sedative. Call our office to see if that would be a good option for your fuzzy kid.

Foxtails - Dangerous to Pets

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The hills are full of foxtails and now that the rains have stopped, they're drying up fast. We've already seen several patients for foxtail probes this spring. Foxtail-like clusters, seen on the stalks of certain grasses, are very dangerous for our pets once they dry and drop. These seed pods are not only barbed so that they stick tight to whatever they touch, they also contain an enzyme which breaks down cell matter. While this helps the seed to burrow into the ground it also allows them to stick to and burrow into our pets. Foxtails can work their way into your pet's skin, just as it does the soil, resulting in pain, discomfort, infection, and, in some cases, death.

Typical places for foxtails to embed are a pet's ears, nose, eyes, armpits, or between the toes, but they can work their way in wherever they attach. Depending on where and how deep it is, we may be able to remove a foxtail with tweezers or forceps. However, if it has migrated too far your pet will need to undergo surgery.

Obvious preventative measures are avoiding fields or trails where foxtails are prevalent and eradicating any from your yard. Since foxtails are designed to travel with the wind, they really can go anywhere. We recommend carefully examining pets after they've been outside to remove any rogue foxtails. If your pet has a long or thick coat, you may want to consider a body shave. Signs that your pet has an embedded foxtail include:

  • rubbing eyes, squinting, discharge from eyes
  • sneezing, pawing at nose, bleeding from nostril
  • shaking head, pawing at ear, head tilt
  • gagging, coughing, swallowing repeatedly
  • licking or chewing at a specific area, redness or swelling, limping

If you suspect a foxtail, call us immediately for our first available appointment. The sooner we can act, the less opportunity there is for the foxtail to migrate.

Easter Holiday Safety Tips

   We'd like to wish our clients and patients who celebrate it a very Happy Easter! Here are a few important safety tips to bear in mind:      Easter lilies, day lilies, and tiger lilies are toxic to pets, and just a small amount can be deadly for cats.      Chocolate can be extremely dangerous for pets leading to anything from Gastrointestinal upset to cardiac failure.      Candy that has the sugar substitute Xylitol, a sweetener, is toxic to dogs and cats. It's often found in candy, gum, and some baked goods. If your pet ingests it, a drop in blood sugar can occur and cause problems such as seizures and liver failure.       Easter grass and foil candy wrappers are non-digestible and can get caught in the intestines.      We're always tempted to share our holiday feast with our furry kids, but keep it to a minimum, and NO BONES! An overfed pet is not a happy pet, and bones can wreak all sorts of havoc in the intestinal tract.      Keep the curious pets out of the trash can. It's common to have the trash can out while cleaning up after a big party. Be sure that the pets don't have access.      Consider your pet's personalities. Some of our pets get easily stressed and might be happiest not joining the party. Make sure that your pet has a quiet, secure space to hang out away from all of the hub bub.      Don't let a furry friend slip out the door while guests are arriving and departing!

We'd like to wish our clients and patients who celebrate it a very Happy Easter! Here are a few important safety tips to bear in mind:

Easter lilies, day lilies, and tiger lilies are toxic to pets, and just a small amount can be deadly for cats.

Chocolate can be extremely dangerous for pets leading to anything from Gastrointestinal upset to cardiac failure.

Candy that has the sugar substitute Xylitol, a sweetener, is toxic to dogs and cats. It's often found in candy, gum, and some baked goods. If your pet ingests it, a drop in blood sugar can occur and cause problems such as seizures and liver failure.

Easter grass and foil candy wrappers are non-digestible and can get caught in the intestines.

We're always tempted to share our holiday feast with our furry kids, but keep it to a minimum, and NO BONES! An overfed pet is not a happy pet, and bones can wreak all sorts of havoc in the intestinal tract.

Keep the curious pets out of the trash can. It's common to have the trash can out while cleaning up after a big party. Be sure that the pets don't have access.

Consider your pet's personalities. Some of our pets get easily stressed and might be happiest not joining the party. Make sure that your pet has a quiet, secure space to hang out away from all of the hub bub.

Don't let a furry friend slip out the door while guests are arriving and departing!

Holiday Safety for pets

  This is such a fun and exciting time of year with lots of family & friends! Here are a few quick tips for keeping your pets safe and content during all of the holiday hub-bub:    Keep a close eye on pets around decorations.  Glass or metal ornaments, tinsel, and artificial snow are dangerous if ingested.  We recommend skipping tinsel if you have cats in the house.  It's pretty irresistible to them and can cause serious problems if eaten. Christmas tree water can also be toxic if ingested due to pesticides and fire retardants from the tree.    It's tempting to want to include our fuzzy kids in the holiday feast, but it's best to avoid "people foods".  Some foods, such as chocolate and artificial sweeteners, are very dangerous to pets. Other foods can be too rich and cause upset tummies or even pancreatitis. Bones are always a "no-no".    Be cautious with candles and floral decorations. Candles can be knocked over, or tails can swish into the flames. Holly, Mistletoe, Poinsettia and Lilies are all toxic if eaten.    Before placing that gift under the tree, be sure that it's not edible. You don't want to put a box of chocolates in reach of your curious pets!    Be sure that alcoholic beverages are closely monitored. If ingested your pet could become weak, ill, or in extreme cases, go into respiratory failure.    Keep a lid on all the trash cans! This one is pretty self-explanatory!    Holiday crackers, noise makers, and horns are great fun for us, but your pet's ears are very sensitive. If your party will include this type of hilarity, be sure that your pet is in a quiet spot well away from the noise. Confetti and tinsel can cause serious problems if ingested, sometimes resulting in surgery to remove.      Pay attention to your pet's needs during all the hustle and bustle.  Does she need a quiet place away from all the hub-bub?  Will he get so excited that he'll forget to eat and drink, and run himself ragged?  Will she enjoy playing with the small children that are visiting? Will he need a new puzzle toy, such as a Kong, to keep him occupied, or a good long run before the guests arrive? Make a plan!

This is such a fun and exciting time of year with lots of family & friends! Here are a few quick tips for keeping your pets safe and content during all of the holiday hub-bub:

Keep a close eye on pets around decorations.  Glass or metal ornaments, tinsel, and artificial snow are dangerous if ingested.  We recommend skipping tinsel if you have cats in the house.  It's pretty irresistible to them and can cause serious problems if eaten. Christmas tree water can also be toxic if ingested due to pesticides and fire retardants from the tree.

It's tempting to want to include our fuzzy kids in the holiday feast, but it's best to avoid "people foods".  Some foods, such as chocolate and artificial sweeteners, are very dangerous to pets. Other foods can be too rich and cause upset tummies or even pancreatitis. Bones are always a "no-no".

Be cautious with candles and floral decorations. Candles can be knocked over, or tails can swish into the flames. Holly, Mistletoe, Poinsettia and Lilies are all toxic if eaten.

Before placing that gift under the tree, be sure that it's not edible. You don't want to put a box of chocolates in reach of your curious pets!

Be sure that alcoholic beverages are closely monitored. If ingested your pet could become weak, ill, or in extreme cases, go into respiratory failure.

Keep a lid on all the trash cans! This one is pretty self-explanatory!

Holiday crackers, noise makers, and horns are great fun for us, but your pet's ears are very sensitive. If your party will include this type of hilarity, be sure that your pet is in a quiet spot well away from the noise. Confetti and tinsel can cause serious problems if ingested, sometimes resulting in surgery to remove.  

Pay attention to your pet's needs during all the hustle and bustle.  Does she need a quiet place away from all the hub-bub?  Will he get so excited that he'll forget to eat and drink, and run himself ragged?  Will she enjoy playing with the small children that are visiting? Will he need a new puzzle toy, such as a Kong, to keep him occupied, or a good long run before the guests arrive? Make a plan!

Thanksgiving Safety Tips for Pets

  Thanksgiving is an exciting holiday full of great food and family gatherings, but there are potential hazards for our furry family members. Here are some tips for avoiding an unplanned visit to the vet this Thanksgiving:     Some pets are true "party animals", but many get anxious with a lot of people coming and going. Be sure that your pet has a quiet, comfortable space to hang out if things get overwhelming.    If you are hosting this year, be sure that your pets are safely contained while guests are arriving and departing. You don't want to spend the holiday combing the neighborhood for a lost pet!     Many "people foods" can be dangerous to pets. Make sure to keep food and any alcoholic beverages well out of their reach.    It's fine to share a FEW nibbles of turkey with your pet. Just be sure that it is boneless and fully cooked. Bones are not only choking hazards, but can cause intestinal blockages. Raw, or undercooked, turkey may contain salmonella.    Sage, and other herbs, contains essential oils that can cause gastrointestinal upset, especially to cats. Keep the pets out of the stuffing!    Baking bread for the feast? No raw bread dough for the pets! The yeast in bread dough will cause it to rise in your pet's tummy which could become a life-threatening emergency.    It is a feast day and we want to share the bounty with our 4-legged family members, but keep it to a minimum. They won't be thankful for a belly-ache, stomach upset, diarrhea, or worse- pancreatitis.   

Thanksgiving is an exciting holiday full of great food and family gatherings, but there are potential hazards for our furry family members. Here are some tips for avoiding an unplanned visit to the vet this Thanksgiving:

Some pets are true "party animals", but many get anxious with a lot of people coming and going. Be sure that your pet has a quiet, comfortable space to hang out if things get overwhelming.

If you are hosting this year, be sure that your pets are safely contained while guests are arriving and departing. You don't want to spend the holiday combing the neighborhood for a lost pet! 

Many "people foods" can be dangerous to pets. Make sure to keep food and any alcoholic beverages well out of their reach.

It's fine to share a FEW nibbles of turkey with your pet. Just be sure that it is boneless and fully cooked. Bones are not only choking hazards, but can cause intestinal blockages. Raw, or undercooked, turkey may contain salmonella.

Sage, and other herbs, contains essential oils that can cause gastrointestinal upset, especially to cats. Keep the pets out of the stuffing!

Baking bread for the feast? No raw bread dough for the pets! The yeast in bread dough will cause it to rise in your pet's tummy which could become a life-threatening emergency.

It is a feast day and we want to share the bounty with our 4-legged family members, but keep it to a minimum. They won't be thankful for a belly-ache, stomach upset, diarrhea, or worse- pancreatitis.