Monthly Archives: November 2016

What to Expect When Your Pet’s Expecting

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Depositphotos_2784082_m-2015As a pet owner, you’re responsible for a lot of your pet’s life. That means helping your cat or dog through pregnancy. If your pet is expecting, you should know what to expect and how to deal with it.

You’ll probably know that your pet is expecting, unless she spends a lot of time alone where males have access to her. Signs may be excessive weight gain, lethargy, loss of appetite, and swollen nipples. Once you know for certain that your furry friend will soon have little ones, there are some things you can do to make life easier for her and be prepared.

See the Vet

You want to make sure it’s a healthy pregnancy, so see your vet as often as may be necessary. There are potential problems, such as infections, and you want to avoid those at all costs.

Prepare Your Home

Your pet needs a clean, comfortable place to sleep throughout the pregnancy. And, of course, a safe place to give birth. This area should be protected from the weather and safe from any other potentially bothersome pets or children. There should be plenty of water and food, and any blankets should be kept as clean as reasonably possible.

When the Babies Come

Gently clean the new additions with just a bit of warm water and clean towel. Keep them warm and make sure that they’re not at risk of getting caught in blankets, or of their mother accidentally rolling over on them. Watch the mother carefully for a while to make sure she is taking to her brood. Keep the little family nice and warm, but not too hot, and out of the elements. Feed mommy good quality food, or anything suggested by your vet.

Of course, you should take everyone to see the vet as soon as possible after the birth to make sure they’re all okay. We love new puppies and kittens, and we’re happy to help you and your pets through the process of birth. Call us and Pet Vet Hospitals and let us meet the mom-to-be.

Give Thanks for Your Pets this Thanksgiving

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Thanksgiving Pet CelebrationThanksgiving is important to different people for varying reasons. Currently, two of the most popular reasons for partaking in the holiday are to give thanks and eat great food. As family and friends gather around the table, so do the pets. While it’s natural to want to share all of Thanksgiving with your furry family, there are some things of which you want to be aware.

Turkey, Turkey, Turkey

Sure, there’s no real harm in letting your pet indulge in some of that turkey dinner. Remember, though, to be careful about what you allow, and how much. Too much of the wrong thing, like sugars and fats, can cause an upset tummy. Don’t feed your pets anything raw, and don’t feed them sweets. Also, turkey should be thoroughly cooked to avoid illness, and free of bones. Don’t let your pets chew cooked bones; they’re more brittle and shards can choke your pet, or cause internal tears. Keep anything you offer your pet simple; nothing too rich and nothing with bones.

A Nosy Nuisance

If your pet begins to be a problem by nosing around, whining, and seeking food from the table, then give them something special of their own to pass the dinner time. A special plate of goodies is nice, but may not occupy them long enough. Consider a long-lasting, tasty chew to keep them occupied while you enjoy your feast.

There’s no likely harm in sharing some Thanksgiving potatoes, a little stuffing, and some boneless turkey with your pets, as long as your pet doesn’t have a history of sensitive stomach issues. After all, they’re part of the family. Just proceed with caution. If you want to be sure, call your vet. At Pet Vet Hospitals, we’re ready to answer any questions so that you can rest easy and enjoy your holiday.

 

Pet Claw Clipping

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close up of dog nail trimmingMany of us have let our pets’ claws grow a bit too long, trimming them only when it clearly becomes a noticeable problem for us. Maybe we wait until we receive one too many scratches by accident, or their claws begin to catch on things. Yes, it’s not always so terrible; after all, we do get them trimmed, eventually. However, it could be more problematic than you may think.

Long, catching claws can be torn.

If your pet’s claws become too long, they’re more likely to be hooked on things. The more this happens, the more the chance that they’ll pull, break the claw, and injure the claw and the toe. They may even break a toe.

Long claws can cause foot pain and growth problems.

Over time, claws that are too long force your pet to walk differently. This can cause your pet foot pain and distort the foot’s shape. These results are particularly bad for older pets at risk of arthritis.

Scratches are a problem, too.

Claws get dirty, it’s natural. So, scratches from your pet’s claws can cause infections. Even if you keep things clean, there’s no way to be 100 percent certain you can prevent an infection, particularly in children.

Clip carefully.

It’s not always easy to clip a pet claw. Pets may struggle and increase the chance of clipping too close to the quick. Generally, you want to cut enough so that you cannot hear the pet’s claws on the floor. Where to cut, precisely, can be hard to see on pets with dark claws.

Talk to your vet. At Pet Vet Hospitals, we offer pet claw clipping services for those who struggle with the task. In fact, the service is free with some other services. Overall, it is quick and cheap, and well worth the money for some.

 

More than Ear Mites

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dogs, dog, petsAs a pet owner, you have probably heard of ear mites. They are nasty, frustrating little problems that, if left unchecked, can spread and cause serious problems. However, they are not the only things with which you should be concerned. Checking your pet’s ears regularly is something you should do to prevent or control a myriad of issues.

Keep an eye out for excess dirt, wax, and discharge.

A little wax is normal and you’ll no doubt see some as you clean your pet’s ears—which you should do at least once weekly. However, excessive wax or anything else that oozes and seems to be too much for normal wax should be examined more carefully. There are many potential problem signs:

  • Strange smells
  • Excessive scratching
  • Too much shaking
  • Head tilting
  • Discharge or excessive wax
  • Signs of pain

These could be signs of a number of potential issues:

  • Ear allergies
  • Ear mites, parasites, and other critters
  • Bacterial infections
  • Yeast infections
  • Ear injury
  • Excess moisture

Clean and inspect regularly.

Ear problems are some of the most common problems that veterinarians see. They’re particularly common for pets with sagging sears, like basset hounds. The first thing you can do to prevent is clean your pet’s ears regularly and gently with appropriate wipes, and keep them dry. Generally, over-the-counter ear wipes are fine for one-a-week cleanings. If you want to be sure, ask your vet. Your pet’s doctor can prescribe or recommend something to help.

Your vet will always check your pet’s ears during a check-up, but a lot can happen between visits. So, inspect them yourself. Become accustomed to what the ears should look like so you catch problems early. If you’re concerned, see your vet. Contact us and we’ll take a look for you, and perform any other exam you need at Pet Vet Hospitals.