All posts by Ashley Wright

Why Is my Cat Vocal at Night?

cat-familyIs your cat especially vocal at night? This is a common problem and it can be extremely annoying while you’re trying to sleep. Cats are nocturnal animals and they are most active at night. If the cat’s noise becomes a constant issue, you should consult with your veterinarian to figure out why the cat is making so much noise.

It’s important to consult with veterinarian because a common cause of vocalization is a physical problem. Your veterinarian can give the cat a complete exam to ensure that the animal is not sick or experiencing a painful problem. Problems like high blood pressure and hyperthyroidism can contribute to vocalization.

If your cat isn’t spayed or neutered, it is much more likely to be vocal at night and sometimes during the day. A female cat in heat will yowl loudly because it is ready to mate. Your veterinarian will encourage you to spay or neuter your cat. This not only helps with vocalization. It also reduces the already overcrowded pet problem.

Your cat may vocalize because it wants your attention. The best way to handle this is to take some time each day to spend time with your cat. The animal’s attention needs will be met and this can reduce vocalization. Even though cats appear highly independent, they become attached to their owners and need interaction.

Your veterinarian will suggest that you look for environmental causes of the yowling if the issue isn’t physical. Have you moved recently? Cats experience stress when they are in a new environment. Veterinarians at Pharr Road animal hospital often recommend restricting the cat to a small area such as one room until the cat has had time to adjust its new home. Sometimes, the cat vocalizes because it is bored. If so, you may need to look for ways to keep your cat entertained so that you can get some sleep. Look for creative ideas such as technology. There are tablet apps that can entertain cats. Some work because they encourage the cat’s natural instincts to chase small items. There are digital fishbowls that can keep cats busy as well. You can find a wide range of free and low-cost apps to prevent boredom.

How Green Vegetables Help Your Dog’s Kidneys

Dogs can develop health problems during their lifetimes. Dogs may have issues with their kidneys as they age. You should bring your dog to the veterinarian for annual exams on a regular basis. The veterinarian will help you manage the animals health in a variety of ways and can identify problems before they become serious.

If you have concerns about your dog’s long term health, talk to your veterinarian about how best to care for your pet. Veterinarians can recommend the best selection of cheap dog food, as well as one for higher price, and help you manage other concerns. Diet is of particular importance because your dog needs certain nutrients to thrive. There are some foods with health benefits that you may not be aware of. You may be surprised if your veterinarian makes suggestions you don’t expect. One of these may be to feed your dog certain green vegetables.

Your veterinarian may recommend that you feed your dog green vegetables to help protect its kidneys. You can give the vegetables in small amounts, especially when you first introduce them. Good vegetable choices include broccoli, strawberry tops and Swiss chard. Asparagus can provide your dog with vitamins including Vitamin A, B1, B2, C, E and other essential nutrients.

Cucumbers and celery can help to promote kidney health. Other helpful greens include collard greens, mustard greens, bok choy, dandelion greens and cabbage. Since dogs typically don’t chew their food, you may need to boil the vegetables or put them into a food processor. Kale is a superfood for humans and can provide many health benefits to dogs. It can prevent cancer and heart disease. Kale is packed with antioxidants which can improve health.

Some vegetables can cause health problems for your dog so be sure to consult with your veterinarian before introducing diet changes. For example, spinach is a bad choice for your dog’s diet. It contains oxalates which can be toxic to the animal’s kidneys in large amounts. Avoid parsley as it can cause diarrhea. Ask for the best vegetables and guidance on how to change the animal’s diet. Your veterinarian will recommend that you introduce new foods slowly so that the dog doesn’t experience stomach upset.

Preventative Medicine

healthy puppyAn important part of long-term pet health care is preventative medicine. Animals are vulnerable to a wide range of illnesses and injury. Many of these can be slowed or eliminated with preventative medicine. You can work with your veterinarian to learn more about the best preventative medicine for your pet.

One of the most fundamental kinds of preventative medicine is vaccinations. These can ward off a wide range of problems like feline leukemia, parasites, rabies, distemper, hepatitis and parovirus, among others. There are some optional vaccines that your veterinarian may recommend depending on where you live, the pet’s age and your lifestyle.

An annual exam is a key part of preventative medicine. Annual exams are not just a time to update vaccinations. A veterinarian can learn a lot about your pet through an annual exam. If your dog or cat has gained a significant amount of weight, the animal should be tested for diabetes. If your pet has diabetes, you can manage it through a weight loss diet and medication. If the animal is slowly gaining weight, your veterinarian may recommend a food change to prevent more weight gain.

There are some issues that affect certain breeds of animals that should be checked on a regular basis. Certain types of animals may develop joint problems or heart issues that can be managed if they are checked regularly. Your veterinarian can also administer screening tests and genetic screening tests so that you can develop a plan for the animal’s long-term health.

Dental health is an often-overlooked part of preventative medicine. Many animals are vulnerable to gum disease which is not only painful for the animal but can affect the pet’s general health. Your veterinarian may recommend daily or weekly brushings and annual professional cleanings.

Dogs need annual heartworm testing and should receive a prescription for heartworm prevention medications. Depending on your location, the doctor may also recommend tick and flea control actions. Older male cats are vulnerable to urinary tract problems which your veterinarian can assess on an annual basis. If these issues aren’t addressed, the animal can experience a great deal of pain. Over the long term, these problems can threaten your pet’s life. That’s why prevention is so important for animals.

Why is the Rattlesnake Vaccine Important for my Dog?

Rattlesnakes are active during the summer months in many parts of the United States, especially the southwest. Many people like to hike, camp or do other outside activities with their dogs. It’s a great way to bond with your pet and ensure that you both get plenty of exercise. However, when you are outdoors in certain regions, rattlesnakes are a real threat for both humans and pets. Some dogs often play in areas where rattlesnakes nest. This can lead to an unwelcome confrontation. A rattlesnake bite can cause serious injury and death.

rattlesnakeThe rattlesnake vaccine is designed to protect against the Western Diamondback Rattlesnake. It does not provide protection against other types of snake bites. The rattlesnake vaccine is appropriate for healthy dogs. It minimizes the effects of a bite. The vaccine stimulates your dog’s immune system to produce antibodies against the toxins that rattlesnake produces. This means your dog will be in less pain and less vulnerable if it is bitten by a Western Diamond Rattlesnake. The vaccine is a great form of preventative medicine against certain types of rattlesnake bites. Your veterinarian can explain the protection the vaccine will provide and the types of bites it will guard against.

When the vaccine is initially administered, your veterinarian will give the dog an initial injection. Then, the dog will receive a booster dose about a month later. The rattlesnake vaccine is not permanent. Your veterinarian will recommend that you give your dog booster shots on a yearly basis. If you live in a high risk rattlesnake vaccine, your veterinarian will probably recommend the vaccine twice a year. Your veterinarian will probably advise you to get the booster shot right around the start of the rattlesnake season.

Although vaccines are a great form of preventative medicine, they are not a perfective solution. If you don’t see the snake bite the dog, you can’t be sure what type of snake it is. In addition to preventative medicine, you should also become acquainted with available emergency veterinarian care in the local area. Your dog will probably need emergency care because the vaccine can’t completely protect your dog.

My Dog’s Nose is Swollen. What Should I Do?

Pets can develop some odd symptoms when they are ill. Dogs sometimes have swollen noses. While this may seem more amusing than concerning, it can actually be a sign of a serious problem. You should consult your veterinarian immediately if your dog’s nose swells.

pet allergiesDogs and cats can contract a fungal infection called aspergillosis. This infection can be disseminated or nasal. The nasal version attacks the dog’s sinuses, nose and nasal passages. Your veterinarian will need to examine the dog to determine if aspergillosis is present. Dogs typically contract this infection from direct contact. Since dogs tend to sniff almost everything, it’s easy for them to contract this sort of fungus through dust, grass clippings or hay. The veterinarian may perform a variety of tests such as a nasal swab or cultures from nasal discharges.

Nasal aspergillosis is simple to treat. Your veterinarian will apply an antifungal drug to the dog’s nasal passages and nose. The dog will need to be anesthetized for this treatment and then, you will need to monitor your dog to make sure he doesn’t show signs of the problem in the future.

Allergies can cause your dog’s nose to swell. Dogs can be allergic to pesticides, foods, grass, pollen and other irritants. Usually, a swollen nose is one of the first signs of allergies. You should consult your veterinarian to make sure the allergy isn’t severe. If it is, it could affect your dog’s breathing over time.

It’s important to have regular dental treatments for your dog. If your dog’s nose swells, it may be a sign of an infected tooth or gum disease. Your veterinarian can examine the dog and determine if the animal needs special treatment. Regular cleanings will prevent dental problems in most dogs.

Dogs get in to lots of things. Active dogs run around, play, run into bushes, yards and other places. Some get into scrapes with other dogs. They can easily hurt their noses. Often, a swollen nose is caused by a bruise, cut or a bite from another animal. Usually, these injuries heal quickly. Monitor the dog carefully for infection. You can clean the wound with a disinfectant and apply antibacterial ointment to the area. If it doesn’t heal or gets worse, make an appointment with your veterinarian.

Do Pets Have Allergies?

pet allergiesDoes your pet sneeze? Does your dog chew his feet? Does he rub his face or constantly lick his groin? Is your cat wheezing? These are all signs of pet allergies, which can make animals very uncomfortable. If you are concerned, you should consult with your veterinarian. Allergies are frustrating but they can be treated successfully in most cases.

Allergies can lead to serious problems for pets. Some animals begin scratching their skin so hard that they develop sores and welts which are vulnerable to infection. Dogs get recurring ear infections. Cats may have scabs on their faces. Hair loss is another symptom of chronic allergies.

Pet owners aren’t always familiar with the signs of allergies which can vary depending on the type of animal. Some cats make frequent noises that sound like they have hairballs. This can actually be wheezing that is allergy-related asthma. A veterinarian can x-ray the cat’s lungs and determine if the animal has asthma, which can be easily treated. Your cat will be much more comfortable if the asthma is addressed.

What are pets typically allergic to? Often, they are sensitive to the same things as humans. They can have reactions to foods, grass, pollen, trees and medications. Fleas often trigger allergic reactions in animals. Your veterinarian will ask you detailed questions about your pet’s behavior and the substances the animal is exposed to.

Your veterinarian will recommend a variety of treatments based on the source of the allergen. If it’s food-based, you will need to change the pet’s diet. You may need to experiment with a few foods to find one that your pet both likes and tolerates. Your veterinarian may recommend changes in flea repellents and household cleaners. The animal may additional special treatment for seasonal allergies.

If your pet has a severe allergy, your veterinarian may prescribe an epi-pen. This is a treatment that is used on humans with severe allergies. When your pet is exposed to a bug bite, chemical or other serious allergen, you will need to inject the animal with the epi-pen. This will reduce the severity of the reaction until you can reach an emergency veterinarian.

Is a Stray Cat Healthy Enough to Adopt?

stray pet adoptionThere are millions of stray cats in the United States and the number grows all of the time. Many sympathetic people find stray cats and consider adopting them. These animals can be good pets in some cases. Many were previously pets that were abandoned by irresponsible owners. Others are lost. It’s not unusual for a stray cat to adopt a friendly family and begin visiting the home regularly. If you are in this situation and find yourself getting attached to the cat, you should take some steps to make sure the animal is healthy enough for adoption.

Before adopting a stray cat, you should have its health evaluated by a veterinarian. Pet health is a serious issue because a sick animal could expose your family and other pets to serious illnesses. You should take the animal to a veterinarian for a pet health evaluation immediately.

The veterinarian will examine the animal and try to determine what kind of background the stray cat has. Was the cat previously a domestic pet? The veterinarian will examine the cat for a microchip so that it can be reunited with its owner if possible. Next, the doctor will check to see if the cat has been spayed or neutered. Veterinarians strongly recommend these operations to help reduce the stray animal population.

One of the most important factors in pet health is vaccination. Your veterinarian will probably recommend a course of vaccinations to protect the animal’s future health. When it comes to stray cats, doctors often want to do a series of tests to make sure the animal doesn’t have any pre-existing conditions. These may include Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV), feline diabetes, heart disease, liver disease and melanoma. You may still choose to adopt a cat with one of these issues but it’s important to understand the implications of these diseases. FIV is ultimately fatal although cats can lead comfortably for many years with the disease. FIV is contagious to other cats so you will want to check before you introduce a stray to your home. Other pet health conditions require medications and monitoring to keep the animal in good shape. A thorough evaluation will help you decide if the cat is a good match for your home.