Something about dogs cheers people who are sick, old or tired. It’s difficult to explain but obvious to observe.
To see for myself, I met about 10 dogs and their owners outside Faith Haven Senior Care Centre of Jackson. They belong to a volunteer group called Fleet’s Therapy Dogs, and they were out on a regular mission to make strangers feel better.
Crazy as it sounds, I swear the dogs could barely wait to go inside the nursing home and get to work.
Beth Sabin said her dog, Chloe, a mix of Akita and collie, grows visibly eager at first sight of a special bib she wears while on duty.
“She gets all excited and puts out her neck so we can put the bib on,” said Sabin.
Three times a month, the dogs visit nursing homes and medical facilities in the Jackson area. The person in charge is Brenda Vailliencourt, a dog trainer who owns Advanced K-9 Academy in Parma. Fleet was the name of her original therapy dog.
Welcome back to Buckley Veterinary Hospital’s monthly pet care column. With warmer weather on the horizon and the allergies than come with seasonal changes, we are touching on allergies that may affect your furry family members.
The information in this piece is provided to you in part by Pet Health Network.
Just as allergies are increasing among humans, veterinarians are seeing significant increases in allergies in pets. Interestingly, the symptoms of canine and feline allergies cause different symptoms than typical “hay fever” – known clinically as allergic rhinitis in people. While people sneeze and wheeze, pets tend to itch and scratch.
Allergies can be divided into three main categories: flea allergy, environmental allergies (atopic dermatitis) and food allergy. Although flea allergy and environmental allergies are most common, often pets can have multiple allergies so a thorough evaluation by your veterinarian or a veterinary dermatologist is recommended.
Flea allergy is caused by an allergic reaction to flea saliva. Pets are exposed to flea saliva when bitten by fleas, and it doesn’t take many bites to cause an allergic reaction. Pets with flea allergy typically develop itching over their backs, legs, bellies and tail. This condition is known as flea allergy dermatitis. The itching and allergic reaction can cause development of “hot spots” and secondary bacterial infections.
Diagnosis is made based on the pattern of itching, which your veterinarian can help to identify. In many cases (but not all) there will be visual evidence of fleas such as flea “dirt” (flea feces appearing as black specks). However, visual evidence of fleas is not always present as fleas spend the majority of their lives off of the pet and fleas can be removed in the process of scratching and grooming by the pet. Treatment includes preventing exposure to fleas in your pet’s environment in combination with strict flea prevention methods.
Just as human beings need to adjust their diets as they age, in the same way dogs’ diets must be modified as they grow old to meet their nutritional needs. Nevertheless, there is a difference between humans and dogs, and this is that what is good for one dog is not necessarily good for another dog, while for humans is the opposite.
Check out the full article: Health Benefits of Canned Food
As a dog owner it is important that you know what foods and ingredients will benefit your senior friend, but it is also crucial to understand what ingredients you should stay away from if you want your old pal to enjoy superior quality of life until the end.
Blue Buffalo Senior Dog Food has achieved what many other brands haven’t, and this is to develop formulas that are free of these three very unhealthy ingredients. No matter what brand of senior dog food you select, make sure it does not contain any of these ingredients …
Check out the full article: Unhealthy Ingredients Not Found in Blue Buffalo Dog Food
Credit: Steve Dale | My Pet World, Tribune Media Services
Veterinarians have traditionally been opposed to pet insurance, but their views seem to be shifting.
“This is because pet insurance can save lives, and we’re seeing more examples of this,” says Dr. Julia Georgesen in Chicago. “As a veterinarian, pet insurance allows me to practice better medicine.”
Bella was an 8-week-old Pit Bull mix, who appeared perfectly healthy on her first veterinary visit. As a “to go gift,” Dr. Bradley Christensen, of Las Vegas, NV, offered a puppy kit to Bella’s owner, which included basic information about puppy care, where to find a dog trainer and a free 30-day trial with Trupanion Pet Insurance. Three days later, this once thriving puppy was pretty much on death’s door as a result of the canine parvovirus.
“For puppies as bad off as Bella was, we didn’t know if she was going to make it,” says Christensen. “We needed permission to administer aggressive treatment, which was not inexpensive. And unfortunately, the owners were very concerned about finding a way to afford treatment for Bella.”
Euthanasia might sadly have been the only viable alternative for Bella. Then, Christensen remembered that Bella’s owners had signed up for the free 30-day trial of pet insurance. Trupanion is one of the only a few pet insurance companies that pays 90 percent of the cost on claims.
“This made the treatment affordable,” Christensen says. “For sure, every puppy and kitten is now being offered the (free) 30-day trial at our clinic,” he adds.
Today Bella is 100 percent recovered, a normal, fun-loving puppy and wonderful family pet, Christensen reports.
LifeSource Bits are small, dark kibbles that have been mixed with Blue Buffalo’s dry foods and are composed of a perfect blend of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants chosen by animal nutritionists and holistic vets. These LifeSource Bits have three main health advantages …
Check out the full article: What are Blue Buffalo’s Lifesource Bits?
If your dog has elbow arthritis you may be able to participate in a vet research program and earn
Credit: By Charlie Powell, College of Veterinary Medicine
PULLMAN, Wash.— Veterinary orthopedic researchers at Washington State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine are conducting a study administering a readily available nutraceutical supplement to dogs with previously diagnosed chronic elbow arthritis.
The Comparative Orthopedic Research Laboratory (CORL) will provide up to $1,000 to each owner for volunteering their dogs for a 24-week study that includes monthly examinations at the Veterinary Teaching Hospital and the CORL . Payments will be made at the end of the study.
The non-prescription nutrient supplement under investigation contains MSM, glucosamine HCL, antioxidants, and phycocyanin; an extract of blue-green algae.
Similar supplements are commonly purchased and consumed by human patients suffering with chronic osteoarthritis also known as “long-term arthritis”.
The nutrient combination in the research formulation acts as a COX-2 inhibitor; similar to over the counter and prescription-based non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). NSAIDs such as aspirin, ibuprofen, carprofen, etc. are used safely in many animals and people. COX-2 is an enzyme responsible for inflammation and pain in arthritis. Other Cox-2 inhibitors are used to treat chronic osteoarthritis in dogs and other animals including people.
Check out the full article: CLICK
You may not believe that adjusting your pal’s diet with a senior formula could help delay these conditions; however, the best senior dog food contains special ingredients that help your older dog battle normal aging decay. Some brands produce senior formulas that are low in fat and calories so that your senior dog does not gain too much weight, which is a common occurrence as some breeds get older and are not able to exercise or move as they used to.
Check out the full article: Three Ingredients in the Best Senior Dog Foods
It is true that the best way to know what is the best dog food for senior dogs is to check the ingredient label; however there are other things that should be checked and never ignored, as is the company’s production practices and controls.
The best dog food brands do not compromise their quality and safety, they invest on it and run strict checks on every product they produce.
Check out the full article: What is the best senior dog food
The best way to know you are feeding your senior dog the healthiest food out there is to read and understand the label on the food’s package. When you go to the ingredient list, this is what you want to know.
Check out the full article: Understanding Dog Food Labels