American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) accredited vet clinics were introduced here in January for the excellence in vet care provided. Steve Dale, broadcaster, Certified Animal Behaviorist, award-winning author, and syndicated columnist for Tribune media has visited many of these great facilities over the past year, giving us an inside look at the kind of new technology AAHA vet clinics must have, public health standards, and what it means to practice the highest quality of medicine across all clinic departments.
Wellness exams are important to the future of your pet’s health. Catching something early usually leads to less expensive and better outcomes, just as in human medicine. Another interesting feature of AAHA vet clinics, there is an opportunity in emergency situations for the vet to apply for a grant when the client cannot pay. It is not a sure thing, but is good to know. Continue reading
I confess I love playing games with my dog, and they are usually confined to the house. Don’t feel sorry for Tashi – he doesn’t appreciate the hubbub of the dog park or rough dog play and has a great time teasing and sometimes out-gaming me!
Today was the first day I noticed my dog was getting a little stir crazy…he came over to the computer with his toy and then barked at me. He doesn’t bark unless I ask him to, for which I take no training props whatsoever – he came that way, so I was startled. All I had to do was get up and off he went…he must have zoomed back and forth from dining room down the hall to the living room 10 times Continue reading
Heartworm prevention time is quickly approaching, don’t let the cold temperatures lull you into a false sense of safety! I know some people keep dogs on heartworm prevention meds year-round — and many veterinarians recommend this. Because climate change is warming winter, and mosquitoes season starts earlier and stays later each year, timing is getting too difficult to predict. A week or more of warm weather in the middle of winter can create the right conditions for a few to hatch. It only takes one to bite.
If you’d like to take a look at a graphic that shows the life cycle of heartworm, check the American Heartworm Society page for more in-depth information. Continue reading
A killer virus is attacking kittens and cats, feline infectious peritonitis, and it’s difficult to diagnose. There are really no signs you can look for that might warn you of a serious problem at the onset. The virus occurs when a cat is infected with the virulent form of feline coronavirus and it mutates in the body developing quickly to an always fatal end. Cats catch this virus through personal contact or exposure to feces. Food, water, bedding, dishes and clothing may also be sources of transmission. Kittens with poorly developed immune systems and older cats are most susceptible.
Cat games and playing with cats might be one answer to getting more cats adopted. It was more than a decade ago when I first heard Steve Dale say “maybe if people treated cats like they treat dogs…” the implication being we’d have more in homes and not so many in shelters. I was so impressed — the concept at the time was jarring in its departure from the norm, radical and deeply caring of the quality of life of cats and our connection to them.
I had cats growing up, and we played with them with catnip toys and balls — not really like you would play with a dog, although I would not learn of all the differences until I found my first dog as an adult. Steve’s assertion rang true, that if people would engage with cats the way they do with dogs how many more would be in homes because of that change in mindset? Continue reading
March marks Canine Heart Health Month, a great awareness campaign complete with tools that will help you detect possible heart disease in your dog. And there’s an app for that!
The Resting Respiratory Rate (RRR) app measures your dog’s respiration rate over time and uploads the information directly to your vet. If your dog has a heart problem, this test will detect it early. You will need to work with your vet before setting up the app. Continue reading