The month of August is known as Itchy Pet Awareness Month, which aims to promote dog and cat skin health and your pet’s health and happiness. While commonly overlooked, itching is a medical condition that requires a proper diagnosis to effectively treat the true cause of the itch.
Why is My Pet Itching?
Dogs and cats usually come in contact with irritants by inhaling from the air or by direct contact with the skin. They may also develop allergies or sensitivities to food or treats in their diet. Some common outdoor allergens include parasites like fleas, ticks, lice or mites, insects, pollens, or even chemicals on lawns. Common indoor allergens include dust mites, molds, mildew, as well as household cleaners, detergents, and other products. Some pets may develop allergies that come and go with the seasons. Learn more about Seasonal Allergies in Dogs and Cats on our other blog.
Look Out for the Common Signs of Itch In Dogs and Cats:
Scratching is the most obvious sign of itch
Recurrent ear problems
If the scratching becomes intense, your dog or cat may damage their skin while trying to relieve the sensation. As a result, this can leave the skin with open wounds, and vulnerable to infections and the potential for hotspots. You may also notice hair loss, scabbing, and crusting due to excessive scratching, chewing, or rubbing. Because the symptoms of allergies are similar to other disorders, it’s important to speak with your veterinarian if you notice these behaviors.
How Do I Relieve My Pet’s Itching?
Consulting your veterinarian is important to determine the true cause of the itch and what treatment can best help your pet. Your veterinarian may prescribe an antihistamine or anti-inflammatory medication to help relieve your pet’s symptoms. They may also recommend bathing with a medicated shampoo to wash allergens away from the skin and reduce irritation.
This information is not intended to diagnose or treat any disease and is purely educational. Please seek advice from your pet’s veterinarian with any questions regarding the health of your pet.
At the peak of summer, the month of July has been established as National Pet Hydration Month. While keeping water available to indoor and outdoor pets may seem like common sense, the summer heat can increase risks for dehydration. Providing clean, fresh water for your dog or cat is the single best way to prevent dehydration. However, there are some other factors to consider when it comes to hydration and your pets.
Dehydration occurs when the body loses more fluid than it’s taking in. Water is vital to all living things. It affects every process in the body from organ function to circulation and digestion. Many articles describe the health benefits of humans maintaining water consumption, and the same goes for our furry friends. At the bottom line, keeping your pet hydrated is important to keeping them healthy.
How to Know if Your Pet is Dehydrated?
Common Signs of Dehydration:
Loss of appetite
Reduced energy levels
Lethargy or depression
Sunken, dry-looking eyes
Dry nose and gums
Loss of skin elasticity
You may be able to detect dehydration at home by gently pinching and lifting the skin over your dog or cat’s shoulder blades. Normally, the skin should quickly return back to its regular position. If the skin stays gathered when you release it, you may have a dehydrated cat on your hands. This is known as “skin tenting” and is a common sign of dehydration. However, this technique does not work as well in cats that are very overweight or very thin.
How to Check Your Pet’s Hydration
What Causes Dehydration?
Dehydration in dogs and cats can be caused by multiple things. When a pet has reduced water intake or increased fluid loss, they are prone to dehydration. This may also cause a loss of electrolytes, such as sodium and potassium which have important functions in the body.
Overheating in hot weather
Heavy work or exercise
A lack of clean drinking water
Acute illness or period of vomiting or diarrhea
An underlying health condition such as diabetes or kidney disease
How is Dehydration Treated?
Since dehydration is typically a symptom of a larger problem, your veterinarian will need to examine your dog or cat to identify and treat any underlying condition. Severe cases of dehydration require emergency veterinary attention. Without intervention, severe dehydration can lead to organ failure and death.
Prevention: How to Keep Your Pet Hydrated
The best way to keep your pet hydrated is to make fresh water available at all times and replace their water daily to encourage them to drink. Some pets, particularly cats, are finicky drinkers, prefer certain bowls, and even prefer to drink in certain locations. Some dogs and cats prefer to drink moving water from a pet water fountain bowl or a dripping kitchen faucet.
Use a portable or collapsible bowl if you are traveling or on the go.
Experiment with different water bowls, and consider trying a pet water fountain.
Make sure you offer enough water sources if you have a multi-pet household
Try offering wet food in your dog or cat’s diet can help provide a source of hydration.
Ask your veterinarian about a hydration supplement or electrolyte fluid.
Keep a good eye on your dog or cat’s drinking habits. If your pet has any sudden changes including a decrease or increase in drinking water, you should contact your veterinarian. Speak with your veterinarian about a liquid hydration supplement to help boost your pet’s fluid intake, or incorporating wet food into their diet.
Hydration and Electrolyte Supplements for Dogs and Cats
VetRxDirect carries a variety of hydration supplements, and we’ve highlighted some of them below!
Oralade is a ready-to-use, liquid formula for cats and dogs that includes balanced electrolytes, nutrients, amino acids, and glucose in purified water.
Oralade supports dogs and cats with critical nutritional and hydration needs.
Purina Hydra Care
Purina Hydra Care is a nutrient-enriched water supplement that promotes healthy hydration in cats.
It contains nutritional osmolytes to help cells absorb water and combat dehydration.
Encourages cats to consume more liquid than with just water alone. Learn more.
Thomas Pet Hydrade
HydrADE is an electrolyte replacement supplement for dogs and cats that helps support normal hydration and encourages water consumption.
Helps maintain positive fluid levels during episodes of dehydration in dogs and cats.
Pet-A-Lyte is a liquid electrolyte solution for dogs and cats.
Helps provide nutrients, electrolytes, and oral hydration.
Aids in recovery from illness or surgery.
Helps with mild fluid loss and dehydration.
Tasty chicken flavor.
This information is not intended to diagnose or treat any disease and is purely educational. Please seek advice from your pet’s veterinarian with any questions regarding the health of your pet.
Purina Hydra Care is a nutrient-enriched water supplement that promotes healthy hydration in cats. It contains nutritional osmolytes to help cells absorb water and combat dehydration. Hydra Care has a tempting liver flavor and helps encourage cats to consume more liquid. Hydra Care was shown to increase total liquid intake and decrease urine specific gravity when compared to cats consuming only water and dry food. This makes it ideal for cats that don’t consume enough water on their own. And, it may support cats with urinary and kidney problems. Purina Hydra Care is easy to feed, simply offer it in a third bowl, alongside your cat’s food and water.
Why is Hydration Important?
Water is vital to all living things. It affects every process in the body from organ function to circulation and digestion. There are many articles describing the health benefits of humans maintaining water consumption and the same goes for our furry friends. At the bottom line, keeping your cat hydrated is important to keeping them healthy. It also helps decrease the likelihood of urinary stones and helps the kidneys flush out toxins.
What Causes Dehydration in Cats?
As it turns out, cats may not be the most efficient drinkers. Deborah Greco, DVM, PhD, DACVIM, Purina senior research scientist, said when cats drink, they bring up the water from the bowl with their tongue and they form a column of water which they bite off. They’re not getting a lot of water all at once — only about three one-hundredths of a teaspoon per lap.
Dehydration in cats can be caused by multiple things. When a cat has reduced water intake or increased fluid loss, they are prone to dehydration. Overheating in hot weather, a lack of clean drinking water or a period of vomiting or diarrhea can cause fluid loss in cats. It can also be caused by another underlying health issue.
Cats can be prone to kidney disease which can progress to kidney failure. In these cases, the kidneys no longer function properly. In order to prevent dehydration, cats may require injectable fluids. Jessica Quimby, DVM, PhD, DACVIM stated that “Hydration is particularly important because when you have chronic kidney disease you can no longer hydrate or rehydrate yourself once you become dehydrated.”
Signs of Dehydration in Cats
The signs of dehydration are not always obvious. Only a veterinarian can provide proper diagnosis and treatment. Here’s what to look for:
Dry gums or dry mouth
Lethargy or depression
Loss of appetite
A decrease in skin elasticity
Elevated heart rate
You may be able to detect dehydration at home by gently pinching and lifting the skin over your cat’s shoulder blades. Normally, the skin should quickly return back to its regular position. If the skin stays gathered when you release it, you may have a dehydrated cat on your hands. This is known as “skin tenting” and is a common sign of dehydration. However, this technique does not work as well in cats that are very overweight or very thin.
Keep a good eye on your cat’s drinking habits. If your pet has any sudden changes including a decrease or increase in drinking water, you should contact your veterinarian.
How Can I Get My Cat to Drink More Water?
The first step is: Make fresh water available at all times. Giving your cat good quality water can turn to an effort-wasted if it isn’t replenished daily. Refreshing their water daily encourages them to drink it. Many owners find their cats are finicky drinkers and prefer certain types of bowls, and even prefer to drink in certain locations. Some cats prefer to drink moving water from a pet water fountain bowl or a dripping kitchen faucet. Offering wet food in your cat’s diet can help provide a source of hydration. More Creative ways to encourage your cat to drink more water. Sometimes, despite effort and creativity, cats still don’t drink enough water on their own.
How does Hydra Care Work?
Purina reported that cats offered Hydra Care during testing consumed on average 28% more liquid each day than cats consuming water only in addition to dry feeding. And it was shown to decrease urine specific gravity and osmolality when compared to cats consuming only water alone. Watch their video below to learn more about the science behind Hydra Care.
Is Hydra Care the new answer for cats that don’t drink enough water? Leave us a comment below!
When an injury or illness strikes, the immune system is your dog’s first line of defense. The immune system is a complex system of antibodies, white blood cells, and biological processes that work non stop to fight off foreign substances and infections. identify, attack, and kill bacteria, viruses, worms, and other pathogens that can harm the body. But when the immune system is compromised, so is your dog’s health and his ability to heal. Common immune system stressors in dogs and cats are:
Heredity: Some dog breeds are genetically predisposed to weaker immune systems or having immunodeficiency disorders.
Illness and injury: If your pet has been injured, suffers from a health condition, or is recovering from surgery, their immune system is challenged. Certain medications, such as antibiotics and steroids, can also suppress the immune system.
Life changes: We all know how stressful an illness, moving, having a new baby – or even welcoming a new puppy to the family – can be. They can take an emotional and physical toll on our pets, too.
Life stage: Working dogs, very active pets, and older pets also have a higher risk of immune system problems.
When your dog’s immune system isn’t working properly it can put them at risk for illness and over time, may lead to lower quality of life and more serious health concerns. Regular veterinary visits will help catch health problems early on, including those associated with the immune system. Your veterinarian may also recommend a nutritional supplement to help support the immune system as the body heals.
Imuquin for Dogs and Puppies
Imuquin is a supplement designed to help support a healthy immune system for dogs and puppies. The ingredients found in Imuquin may encourage normal function and responses of the immune system and immune cells. It contains Beta-glucan sourced from brewer’s yeast, marine lipids, and Omega 3 fatty acids EPA and DHA which may maintain normal inflammatory responses of the immune system. It also includes a blend of vitamins and minerals to support overall health. Immuquin Puppy is formulated to support dogs under the age of 6 months through growth and immune challenges. Imuquin is a powder that conveniently mixes with your dog’s food and is flavored with hydrolyzed chicken protein.
What if your dog or cat could tell you if they were in pain? We have the advantage of describing our aches and pains, but our pets don’t have it quite so easy. We may not be able to ask them, but we can learn what signs to look out for. It’s important to watch for subtle behavior changes. These may include changes in daily habits, activity level, body postures, vocalization, and facial expressions. Noticeable behavior changes may include aggression, self-mutilation, or self-protection. These changes are especially apparent when a normally friendly animal starts showing signs of aggression or vice versa. Some signs of pain are very distinct, for example, if your dog suddenly starts limping or has difficulty getting up from the floor. Keep in mind that cats are especially adept at hiding pain, and the warning signs may mimic other health problems, and vary widely.
Painful Signs In Dogs
Less playful, social, or hiding
Reduced daily activity
Changes in appetite and drinking
Changes in sleeping
Guarding or self-protection
Trembling, circling, or restless
Resists being held or picked up
Scratching, licking, or biting a certain body part
Limping or changes in mobility
Excessive panting at rest
Painful Signs in Cats
Won’t use the litterbox
Reluctance to jump up or down
Scratching, licking, or biting a certain body part
Avoiding physical contact or petting
Resists being held or picked up
Seeks more attention
Slows or stops grooming
Flattened ears, arched back, or tucked feet and/or abdomen
What Causes Pain?
Our pets can experience pain for a variety of reasons whether it’s acute pain, which happens suddenly due to injury, surgery, or illness. Chronic pain, which is persistent over time, may be due to conditions like arthritis, infections, cancer, nerve disorders, and other diseases. The exact source can be complex, so if you suspect your dog or cat is experiencing pain, the first step is always to talk to your veterinarian. Your vet will examine your pet to help diagnose the cause of it and provide treatment options that best fit your dog or cat’s needs.
Refrain from treating your dog or cat’s pain on your own. Certain types of pain relievers are toxic to animals, especially cats. Also, different types of pain require different types of treatment. Let your veterinarian decide if a pain reliever will manage their symptoms and prescribe the appropriate dosage.
VetRxDirect pharmacy offers a variety of prescription pain relievers for dogs and cats. We’ve included some of the most popular below. Visit our website for more information.
Onsior (robenacoxib) is the first non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) designed to relieve pain and inflammation in cats. This medicine is particularly useful for cats recovering from surgery or soft tissue injury.
Galliprant is a prescription medication for dogs with osteoarthritis that contains grapripant, a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). It works to target pain and swelling at its source by blocking the receptor, so your dog can keep moving. Learn more on our blog.
Meloxidyl (Meloxicam) is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that reduces inflammation in the body. Meloxicam is commonly prescribed for dogs with osteoarthritis and those who have undergone surgery.
Just as humans have a range of fears and anxieties – and coping mechanisms to handle them – so do our pets. Dogs and cats experience fear, phobias, and anxiousness towards objects or situations and react with certain behaviors. Consequently, some pets can develop negative, destructive, or aggressive behaviors. Treating problem behavior can be a multi-step process, and often requires time and patience.
Start by Learning
So what do you do if you have a pet that has begun reacting with negative behaviors First, observe your pet’s behavior closely to confirm what triggers the fear or anxiety and what the responses are. How long does the behavior occur? Is there anything that makes it better or worse? This information will be critical if you need to consult with your veterinarian.
Common triggers include:
Loud noises including fireworks, thunderstorms, construction, or street noise
Being home alone
Kenneling, boarding, traveling or moving
Car trips to vet or groomer
New family members
New or other pets in the house
Visitors or social gatherings
Changes to the environment or household
Change in daily routine
If you know what causes your dog or cat to feel fearful, you may plan ahead for these situations. Often, these situations are unavoidable. Dogs and cats can also express phobias to certain objects or situations. For example the vacuum cleaner or bathing. The fear of being home alone or separation anxiety is also common for pets. Next, take time to watch your pet to figure out what triggers them to feel anxious or stressed and what behaviors they express in response to it. Once identified, work with your pet to condition them to the object or situation. Try using training and give positive rewards to modify their behavior. Learn more about behavior modification techniques for dogs and for cats.
For some dogs and cats, these methods alone will not be enough. If you find yourselves in that position, consult with your veterinarian or a professional behaviorist. Some common signs may include but are not limited to:
Signs of Fear and Anxiety In Cats
Going outside litterbox
Avoidance or isolation
Signs of Fear and Anxiety in Dogs
Panting or trembling
Pacing or restlessness
Cowering or hiding
Excessive drooling or lip licking
Destructive or aggressive behavior
Excessive whining or barking
Time to Talk
Reporting behavior problems and concerns to your dog or cat’s veterinarian is important. Different medical conditions may cause changes in behavior. Your veterinarian can rule out any potential health problems. Document your dog or cat’s behavior in detail. Prepare to answer questions regarding frequency, duration, type, and patterns of the behavior. Your veterinarian may recommend training or behavior modification techniques. Supplements or prescription medication may be prescribed in addition to these methods. All treatments should be monitored by your vet.
VetRxDirect features a large selection of behavioral health products including over the counter supplements, pheromone products, and prescription medications for both dogs and cats. We’ve highlighted a few of the most popular below.
Solliquin is a nutritional supplement that encourages behavioral health in dogs and cats. Solliquin helps provide a feeling of calm and contentment during stressful events, without the use of sedation. Made with natural ingredients including magnolia and phellodendron extracts, l-theanine from green tea, and whey protein concentrate.
Reconcile, fluoxetine, is a prescription medication for dogs with certain behavior and cognitive disorders. It works by affecting serotonin levels in the brain that may be unbalanced. Reconcile is commonly prescribed to treat separation anxiety in dogs, and help relieve behavioral symptoms.
Feliway contains feline facial pheromones that help calm cats and control negative feline behaviors associated with stress and anxiety. The pheromones have a soothing effect without using tranquilizers or other medications. Feliway is also great for traveling and acclimating cats to new environments. Plug-In room diffuser, travel spray, and wipes allow for multiple applications.
Sileo is a prescription treatment for dogs that suffer from anxiety and behavioral problems caused by noises (noise aversion). It contains the sedative dexmedetomidine at a low dose to help calm dogs down, without heavy sedation, so they can keep fully functional. Sileo is an oral gel labeled to start working in 30-60 min and last 2-3 hours.
Have you ever questioned whether generic medications are really as good as the name brand medications? Or why there is a cost saving? Generic medications work the same way as brand-name medications do, and they are proven to have the same safety as the brand names. They contain the same active ingredient and are made to be used in the same exact way. The FDA strictly requires that all generics have the same dosage, effectiveness, strength, stability, and quality while in comparison to their brand name counterparts. As a result, generics also carry the same side effects, risks, and benefits as the brand name. The FDA regulates generic medications for both humans and animals, learn more on their website.
Generic drugs and brand name drugs have the same
Dosage Form (tablet, liquid, powder, etc)
Route of administration (oral, topical, etc)
Indications for use
Generics may include different inactive ingredients such as preservatives or fillers. The FDA also ensures the inactive ingredients of the generic medicine are acceptable. Because trademark laws prevent generic drugs from looking just like the brand name drug, the color and size may be different.
Why are generics cheaper?
Manufacturers of generic drugs do not have to repeat the costly laboratory and clinical trials that the brand name company invested in to gain the first FDA approval. This allows them to produce and sell the medication at a lower cost. When several companies begin to make the same medication, the competition helps keep the price down.
Manufacturing & Monitoring
Both brand name and generic drugs are manufactured with the same strict and high-quality standards by the FDA. The drugs must both be formulated to contain the same active ingredient in the same amounts. All ingredients, both active and inactive, must meet stringent quality standards.
After a generic drug is approved by the FDA, the quality and monitoring process continues. This includes ongoing tests for stability and reporting of side effects.
Lyme disease, also called Borreliosis, is an infectious disease caused by Borrelia bacteria. The disease is transmitted to humans and animals through the bite of an affected tick. A tick first picks up the bacteria by attaching to infected animals like deer, mice, or birds. The deer tick and black-legged tick are the ticks that commonly carry and spread the Borrelia bacteria, which is responsible for Lyme disease. Learn how ticks spread disease from the CDC. Ticks are found in forests or grassy, wooded areas near marshes, rivers, lakes or oceans. Deer ticks live in moist, shady areas near ground level, and cling to tall grass and brush.
Symptoms and Treatment
Photo courtesy CDC
The warning signs and symptoms of Lyme disease in dogs and cats can vary. Symptoms can appear months after a tick bite, may be vague, and often mimic other diseases leading to difficult or a potential misdiagnosis. If left untreated, Lyme infections can affect the kidneys, nervous system, and heart. Veterinarians can take an antibody blood test, which can show whether an animal has been exposed to the Borrelia bacteria and help determine an appropriate treatment. Common signs include:
Painful or swollen joints
Loss of appetite
Swollen lymph nodes
Antibiotics are commonly prescribed to treat Lyme infections in dogs and cats. Some animals may require more than one round of treatment to lessen signs of infection. Antibiotics may not eliminate the infection completely, which can lead to symptom flare-ups or permanent conditions.
Who Is at Risk?
Animals that spend time outdoors, especially in tick-infested areas, have a higher risk of exposure. Both people and animals may be bitten by ticks during outdoor activities or even while spending time in their own back yards. View forecasts for Lyme Disease in your area.
The best way to protect your pet from disease is avoidance from ticks and taking precautionary steps. Start by using a reliable tick-preventative product for your pet. Fortunately, there are highly effective preventative products for both cats and dogs. Preventatives must be used consistently in order to provide effective longterm tick control. It is best to talk with your veterinarian about which one is right for your pet and your area of the country. It is important that the product you use repels the types of ticks in your area. If you live in a climate with freezing temperatures, don’t be fooled, ticks can hibernate over the winter.
If spending time outdoors, it’s important to find and remove any ticks on you or your pet as soon as possible. The longer a tick stays attached, the more likely it will transmit disease. Pets can bring Lyme infected ticks into the house, which can then attach to other animals and people, spreading the disease.
How To Check Your Pet For Ticks:
Run your hands slowly over your dog or cat’s entire body feeling for bumps or lumps. Ticks can be very small and like to hide out inside ears, between toes, under the tail and collar, and in the armpit and groin areas. Don’t forget to check yourself too!
Additional Tips to Avoid Ticks
Vaccination. Preventative vaccines are available for dogs. Ask your veterinarian whether a Lyme disease vaccination is appropriate for your dog.
Keep lawns, shrubs, brush, and trees trimmed to help reduce tick populations.
Keep woodpiles neatly stacked and remove leaf piles.
Place a 3 ft barrier of wood chips or gravel between yards and wooded areas to prevent tick migration.
Consider a pesticide application to control an infestation. Use caution with pets.
Lyme Disease Risk to Humans
Dogs and cats cannot directly transmit this disease to humans. Because people and their pets are often together outdoors as well as indoors, a Lyme disease diagnosis for your pet could be a warning for you to consult a physician. Additionally, dogs and cats may bring infected ticks into the household, which can attach to another animal or person, and transmit disease. Learn more about Lyme disease in humans at CDC or Lyme Disease.org
VetRxDirect carries a large selection of tick preventatives for dogs and cats including topicals, oral medications, collars, shampoos, sprays, and products for the home. Visit our website for more information and check out a few we’ve listed below!
Effipro Plus is a topical treatment for cats that kills all stages of fleas and ticks including deer ticks, brown dog ticks, American dog ticks, and lone star ticks. It also kills chewing lice and repels mosquitoes that can carry heartworms. Apply Effipro Plus once a month for long-lasting, waterproof protection.
Bravecto is a prescription strength topical just for cats. Bravecto gives your cat protection against fleas and black-legged ticks (deer ticks) for 12 weeks,and dog ticks for 8 weeks. It contains fluralaner as a long-acting insecticide to not only kill but also help break the life cycle. Bravecto is also designed to eliminate fleas in as little as 8 hours.
NexGard is a prescription, chewable flea and tick preventative for dogs contains afoxolaner It kills adult fleas, black-legged tick, American dog tick, Lone Star tick, and brown dog tick. NexGard is formulated to give protection for 30 days and is FDA Approved to Prevent Lyme Disease
Effitix Plus is a broad spectrum topical for dogs. It kills and repels all life stages of fleas and ticks including brown dog ticks, deer ticks, lone star ticks, and American dog ticks. Effitix Plus also repels and kills mosquitoes that may carry heartworm, repels biting flies, kills lice, and helps control sarcoptic mange.
The start of the new year motivates many of us to set new goals and gain a fresh start for the upcoming year. Although, setting a resolution to make personal changes is often easier said than done whether we set the bar too high for ourselves or lose motivation along the way. What if we made resolutions with our pets? This New Year, try making some changes to improve your pet’s health and happiness. Happy, healthy pets can only help to make happy and healthy owners!
More Time For Playtime
Make a simple resolution to set aside dedicated time to play with your dog or cat. Use a classic favorite or try a new toy to keep them interested. Playtime is not only fun and stimulating but also gives your pet the positive social attention from you. Playtime is also a good way to get them up and moving, especially for indoor cats.
Tricks & Training
Challenge your dog or cat by teaching them a new trick or start some training. Sharpen up on obedience skills, join a training class, or work on some behavior problems. Teaching a new skill or practicing a learned one is a good way to keep your dog or cat’s brain active and promote mental health. Reward them on a job well done with positive reinforcements like training treats.
Don’t Skip the Vet
Scheduling your dog or cat for their yearly exams is essential to keep them healthy and happy. Prevention is the best medicine. Regular exams allow your veterinarian to detect any potential diseases, which are easier to manage when caught early. If your pet already has a medical condition, check-ups are vital to ensure your pet’s condition is being managed and allow your vet to adjust any treatments. You may need to visit your veterinarian more frequently if your pet is taking prescription medications or treatments like insulin injections or fluid therapy.
Stay On Schedule with Preventatives
Mark your calendar, set your phone reminders, and place your post-its to keep on schedule with flea & tick, dewormers, and heartworm preventatives. These medications are only effective for a specific amount of time so it’s important to give them on time. Skipping or delaying doses can leave your dog or cat unprotected from heartworm disease, intestinal parasites, fleas, ticks, mites, and other parasite infections. While being uncomfortable, these infections also pose a significant risk to your dog or cat’s health. And heartworm disease treatment is not currently available for cats. Learn more.
Keep Those Pearly Whites
Make a resolution to practice regular oral hygiene habits with your dog or cat. Dental care is often overlooked but it plays a large role in your pet’s overall health. Dental conditions like periodontal disease can cause inflamed gums and lead to painful tooth extractions. Regular cleanings and oral exams by your veterinarian paired with good home hygiene habits will keep your pet’s teeth in top condition. Accomplished with patience and pet toothpaste, daily brushing is one of the best ways to prevent plaque and tartar buildup. Dental chews, water additives, and dental diets are also very beneficial for dental care at home.
One of the most common resolutions for people is to start a healthy diet, make this one for your pet too! Always talk with your veterinarian about your pet’s current food and seek their advice before changing your dog or cat to a new food. Making sure your pet’s diet fits their nutritional needs is a great way to keep them healthy. Animals that are working and activities require different nutrition than young and growing or senior aged animals. Some medical issues require special therapeutic diets to help manage their condition.
Grooming your dog or cat is a great way to bond with your pet and keep them looking and feeling great. Brushing removes excess fur, reduces shedding inside your house, and distributes the natural oils of the skin. This can be a calming and productive activity for both you and your pet. Your pet will love the extra attention. It also allows you the chance to look over your pet’s body to check for any skin problems. Time for some new tools? Check out the furbliss grooming brush.
Have you made a New Year’s pet resolution? Leave us a comment below!
Vitamin B12 is an essential vitamin that plays important roles in within the body. It helps with the function of the brain and nervous system, cell growth, metabolism of fat and carbohydrates, and red blood cell formation. Vitamin B12, or cobalamin, is not made by the body and must be supplied by food or supplements. Having a lack of B12 can lead to other health problems. Both dogs and cats can develop a deficiency to this vitamin. It can also occur in those dogs and cats with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency. Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI) is a condition which prevents the proper digestion and absorption of nutrients from food due to a lack digestive enzymes in the pancreas. Animals suffering from EPI become deficient in multiple nutrients including vitamin B12. This is because they cannot absorb it from the food they eat. Some common signs include weight loss, anemia, lethargy, and decreased appetite. If you suspect your pet has a deficiency, talk with your veterinarian. Your veterinarian may prescribe Vitamin B12 injections or a supplement like Cobalequin.
B12 supplements are used to help increase and maintain vitamin levels in animals with deficiency, anemia, pancreatic insufficiency, and other conditions. They may be given as a one-time treatment by your veterinarian or prescribed routinely to help maintain your pet’s levels. Cobalequin is a supplement for dogs and cats that contains cobalamin, a form of vitamin B12. It helps increase and maintain levels of vitamin B12, and replace nutrients missing from your dog or cat’s regular diet. Cobalequin comes in a tasty, chicken flavored, chewable tablet making it easier for you to give than at-home injections.