$20.00 Vaccination Exam
$10.00 Each Vaccine
When exercising with your dog, it's important to take it slow and not push yourself -- or your dog. Consider this scenario: You’re in the park tossing a Frisbee to your previously sedentary and sadly out-of-shape dog when it leaps into the air and drops down on the grass with a shriek. Uh oh. Now the dog’s got a torn ACL in the knee that needs surgery, and you’re wondering how you could’ve avoided it.
Not uncommon, said Dr. Tony Kremer, a veterinarian in Chicago. “We see tears, sprains, and regret all the time, all the result of a 'weekend warrior' mentality.”
The good news is you can prevent these and other injuries by exercising your dog properly– and staying away from the following mistakes other pet owners make in keeping their dogs active.
Mistake #1: Too much too soonJust as we shouldn’t go from lying on the sofa to running a marathon, neither should our animals. Instead, consider the dog’s age, health and exercise history before exercise – and then, think progression, said Andrea Metcalf, a fitness expert in Chicago.
“If your dog isn’t used to moving, walk for 10 minutes a few times a day and build gradually,” she said.
It’s an approach that’s not only best for your dog, but also the most organic, said Dr. Marcella Ridgway, a vet at the University of Illinois in Urbana. “Large amounts of repetitive, physically demanding exercise are not natural for dogs,” she said, adding that they’re more suited to walking in short intervals, stopping frequently to sniff.
Mistake #2: Assuming you're both fitEven if you work out with your dog, you may not be equals in terms of fitness. If you’re more active than your dog, you may not want to run several miles with it. If your dog is more active, toss it a ball and then go for a short walk. That way, it’ll already be tired before you set off and a few short blocks will be just enough.
Mistake #3: Ignoring the effects of climate Exercising your dog in extreme cold or heat requires vigilance in preventing things like frostbite and heat illness. You can do that by:
Mistake #4: Multitasking How many times have you seen somebody with their dog’s leash in one hand and a cell phone in the other? Too many, said Metcalf, who cautions against it.
Instead, leave the earplugs and cell phone at home. “Take that time to unwind and connect with your pet,” she said. “They’ll be happier and you will too.”
Mistake #5: Not exercising at allFinally, know that the benefits of exercise usually far outweigh the risks, said Kremer, especially when it comes to keeping your dog – and your relationship – healthy.
Adapted by: webvet.com - Credit: Reviewed by Amy I. Attas, V.M.D.
Pets can develop allergies, just like people. Allergies are especially common in certain breeds of dogs, including several types of terriers and retrievers.
An allergic response develops when the immune system "overreacts" to a particular foreign material, which is called an allergen. Common allergens are pollens, molds, food proteins, and flea saliva. In animals, allergens often enter the body through breathing or eating, or via flea bites. Allergens can also enter directly through the skin; a common example in people is a reaction to poison ivy, but such contact allergies are unusual in pets.
When an allergen enters the bloodstream, the body produces specific antibodies that "target" the foreign material. This causes specialized white blood cells to release many substances that result in an allergic response. One of the most common of these substances is histamine, which is why antihistamines (eg, diphenhydramine) are sometimes used for treatment.
When people breathe in allergens such as pollen, they typically get hay fever. When pets breathe in these allergens, instead of a stuffy nose or runny eyes, they get a condition called atopy, which results in skin irritation and itching. Many allergic pets begin to show signs when they are as young as 6-7 months, and almost all show signs by the time they are 3-5 years old. Typically, the skin irritation and itching begins as a seasonal problem in the spring or summer, but many pets eventually become allergic year round. The location of the irritation and itching tends to vary depending on the cause. Inhaled allergens usually cause problems around the face, feet, and "arm pits," although other areas of the body can be affected. Food allergies usually cause skin irritation around the head and neck. Flea allergy often develops first in areas where fleas are commonly found, especially the rump, tail, and groin areas.
Allergies can cause your pet to lick and scratch incessantly, leading to skin rashes and serious infections. You can help your veterinarian identify the cause of the problem by keeping track of when the problem started and how (if) it changes over time. Once your veterinarian establishes the cause of the allergy, he or she can determine the best treatment for the allergy. Antihistamines and corticosteroids are often used to combat itching and inflammation. Your pet may need a restricted or special diet to avoid exposure to food allergens. In some cases, your veterinarian may recommend a series of shots meant to gradually desensitize your pet to the offending allergen(s).
What causes allergies?
An allergic response develops when the immune system “overreacts” to foreign materials (called allergens) such as pollens, molds, food proteins, and flea saliva.
Do pets get hay fever?
Hay fever is a type of seasonal allergy caused by inhaling allergens such as pollens and molds. Pets are often allergic to these same allergens, but signs of illness usually show up as skin irritation and itching, rather than runny eyes and nose.
When do allergies usually start?
Many pets begin to show signs when they are as young as 6-7 months, and almost all allergic pets develop problems by 3-5 years of age. Inhaled allergies usually begin as seasonal itching during spring or summer, but eventually may become a year-round problem.
The formal name for hot spots is acute moist dermatitis. They are most common in long-haired dogs, but any breed can be affected. Fleas and allergies are the most common causes, but any itchy irritation-even serious hair matting-can get a hot spot started. Pets lick the itchy area intensely, often when no one is looking, until it becomes red, raw, and moist. Bacteria then often move in and infect the damaged area, making the problem worse.
Fortunately, hot spots are usually superficial and look much worse than they really are. Your veterinarian will clip away the hair so that the wound can dry out, and then clean the area with an appropriate antibacterial soap or solution. Follow-up care at home usually includes cleaning, topical medications, and sometimes oral antibiotics or corticosteroids. In addition, the underlying cause of the hot spot must be addressed by controlling fleas, allergies, infections, hair mats, etc.
What is a hot spot?
A hot spot, also known as acute moist dermatitis, is a superficial, red, moist, weeping rash on the skin.
What causes a hot spot?
Fleas and allergies are the most common causes, but any itchy irritation—even serious hair matting—can get a hot spot started. Pets lick the itchy area intensely until it becomes red, raw, moist, and infected.
How is this condition treated?
Your veterinarian can clip away the hair, clean the area, and prescribe appropriate therapy, such as topical medications and (sometimes) oral antibiotics or corticosteroids. In addition, the underlying cause of the hot spot must be addressed by controlling fleas, allergies, infections, hair mats, etc.
*Adapted from: http://www.webvet.com
What is the easiest way to give pills to pets?
The easiest way to give your pet a pill is to hide it in a small amount of a favorite food, such as canned pet food, peanut butter, soft cheese, or tuna. Watch carefully to be sure your pet does not spit out the pill while managing to eat the treat!
What if my pet won’t eat the treat or keeps spitting out the pill?
In this case, you will need to administer it directly into your pet’s mouth. Ask your vet for a demonstration and advice on the proper technique.
How can I control my pet while administering a pill?
It is a good idea to have one person hold the pet while a second administers the pill. It is often easiest to place a cat or small dog in your lap, possibly wrapping a cat in a towel with only its head exposed. Larger dogs can be backed into a corner or placed on a metal or tile surface where they have less traction and you have more control.
***Adapted from: http://www.webvet.com
Dr. Karsten Fostvedt