Blog Posts by vetstreet.com
By Dr. Mary Fuller
Ready to grab that beach towel and head to the shore with your canine companion in tow?
While a straw hat and a pulp-fiction novel may be at the top of your packing list, you also need to bring along a few things to help ensure your dog's comfort - and take the right precautions to keep him safe on land and in the water.
Although some dogs seem to be natural swimmers, flat-nosed and barrel-chested breeds, like Bulldogs, have a hard time staying afloat. When in doubt, make sure that your dog is wearing a life vest, and never leave your pup unsupervised in or even near the water.
When it's time to go for a swim, it's always best to steer your pet toward calmer waters, away from speedboats and rough surf. Scan the area for possible danger spots, or ask a lifeguard for advice on water conditions.
Finally, try to keep your dog from guzzling too much salt water, which can lead toRead More »from Beach Safety Tips for the Dog Days of Summer
- vetstreet.com | Pets – Mon, Jun 11, 2012 10:26 AM EDT
The fun-in-the-sun summer months have officially arrived, which can only mean one thing: It's time to start thinking about sun protection for your pets.
That's right - furry family members can also suffer from the damaging effects of the sun's powerful rays.The Skinny on Sunscreen
The sun gives off different kinds of ultraviolet rays. UVB rays cause sunburns, while UVA rays lead to sun-induced aging and skin cancer.
At the moment, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is in the midst of revising its rules for regulating sunscreen labels, so until those regulations take full effect (it won't be in time for the 2012 summer season), you need to be a discerning consumer when purchasing the best product for you or your pet.
The type of sunscreen that you want for both you and your pet is the "broad spectrum" variety, which means that it blocks both types of harmful rays.Pet-Safe Products
ThatRead More »from What You Need to Know About Pet Sun Protection This Summer
By Linda Fiorella
Calories in versus calories out. It's pretty basic stuff, really.
Of course, the equation gets a bit complicated when your plump pet lives to beg for treats. Add to that the aches and chronic health conditions of an aging dog, and the problem becomes even trickier to solve.
Finding the right solution, in conjunction with your veterinarian, can potentially add quality years to your dog's life. But what is that solution? What can you do when your senior pup is becoming a chunky monkey?
Vetstreet looks at some of the ways that veterinarians who work with senior dogs can address an older pet's portly physique, taking his aches and pains into account.How Do I Know If My Older Dog Is Really Overweight? Read More »from Pudgy Senior Dogs: How to Get Them in Shape
By Linda Fiorella
Domesticated cats have given up most of their wild ways for a cushy life with humans.
One look at their teeth, however, quickly reminds us that felines haven't lost their ability to bite and chew, just like their untamed cousins.
What they do with those teeth can be hazardous to all sorts of household objects - and even to cats themselves if the nosh item of choice happens to be plastic.
The chewing or eating of any nonfood items - dirt, electrical cords, carpeting and plastic - is known as pica. "I occasionally see a cat who likes to chew plastic. Most of them are normal household items, such as milk jug rings, the plastic ends of mini blind cords and straws," explains Dr. Amy Pike, DVM, of Veterinary Behavior Consultations in St. Louis, Mo.
There are various medical reasons for why a cat would develop pica, including dental disease orRead More »from Why Does My Cat . . . like to Chew Plastic?
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Source of the Original Article: 13 Dogs Breeds Ideal for ApartmentsRead More »from 13 Dogs Breeds Ideal for Apartments
- vetstreet.com | Animal Nation – Thu, May 24, 2012 9:51 AM EDT
I have a patient, Ajax, who lost his leg to cancer. Even though his owners found the tumor when it was very small, it was not a type that was responsive to chemotherapy or radiation. The tumor was attached to the bone, so no treatment other than amputation could eradicate the mass.
Ajax's story has a happy ending - after nearly two years, there's no sign of the tumor - but suggesting to an owner that I amputate a pet's leg never makes for a happy day in my clinic.
An amputation discussion day is sad because most owners have no experience with a three-legged dog or cat, and they tend to project their own negative feelings about amputation onto their pets.
See Also: My Pet Is Limping. What Should I Do?
I never suggest this radical surgery lightly, and I only recommend it to control pain or prolong a life. Humans can't walk on one leg or function well with only one arm. But cats and dogs come with three legs and a spare.No-Regrets Dog Owners
By Dr. Mary Fuller
Although cats and dogs clearly relish cleaning morsels of food off their whiskers, the long hairs have other purposes, from sensing things close to their face to communication.How Are Whiskers Different From Other Hair?
When it comes to pet hair, whiskers are longer, thicker and more rigid, as well as more deeply embedded in the skin. Each whisker is rooted in a hair follicle that's filled with blood vessels and nerves. And like other hairs, whiskers will occasionally fall out and grow back.
Most cats have 12 whiskers that are arranged in four rows on either cheek, but the whisker pattern in dogs is more varied. Whiskers can also sprout above the eyes, as well as under the chin. Cats can also grow whiskers behind their wrists.
See Also: Why Does My Cat Meow at Me?Why Do Cats and Dogs Have Them?
The primary function of whiskers is to aid with vision, especially in the dark, by providing additional sensory information - much like antennae on otherRead More »from Why Do Cats and Dogs Have Whiskers?