Monday, February 23, 2015

Puppy Vaccinations

Puppy Vaccinations

The puppy vaccination series is one of the most important aspects of your puppy's early life. Vaccinating pets has been a controversial subject for years. Many people worry that we are over-vaccinating out pets, possibly putting them at risk for auto-immune issues and vaccine reactions. That's part of the reason many vets are moving towards a three-year protocol (rather than annual) for adult dogs. However, when it comes to puppies it's a different story. Just like human babies, puppies (and kittens) need basic immunizations at the very least. Plus, the vaccine visits allow your vet to examine your puppy every few weeks and monitor his growth and overall health. Talk to your vet about the best immunization schedule for your puppy. More »
Boston Terrier Puppy - Photo of Boston Terrier Ace - Photo © Jodi Mallory
Ace, an 8 week old Boston Terrier. Photo © Jodi Mallory

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Essential Puppy Supplies

Your new puppy will need certain items from the very start. Some are essential for your pup's well-being, while others are quite helpful. Most important items include a leash and collar with identification, food and water bowls, and chew toys. You should also get a nice dog bed and, preferably, a crate or kennel. Some if these items can last as your puppy ages, but bear in mind that most of them will need to be replaced when your puppy grows. Collars may be adjustable to a certain point. A kennel can be purchased in a larger size for the future, but should be blocked off with boxes or other objects to make it the right size for the puppy. Be prepared for the expenses associated with dog ownership so you can budget accordingly. More »
Puppy at Empty Food Bowl - Hungry Puppy - Photo © sanjoyg on flickr
Photo © sanjoyg on flickr

Choosing Your Puppy's Food

Your puppy's diet can make all the difference in his future health and well-being. Before you decide on a puppy food, do your research. Talk to your vet, other pet professionals, and fellow dog owners. Remember that if the food you initially choose does not meet your expectations, you can gradually switch to another food. In today's dog-friendly world, the choices of diet seem endless. Some owners like to feed premium foods, while many feel that holistic/natural diets are best. However, homemade and raw diets are becoming increasingly popular. While researching puppy food, consider the quality of ingredients, inclusion of proper nutrients, and taste. Basically, the food should be good for your puppy and he should like eating it. More »
Is Your Puppy Showing The Signs? Stop This Early Sign Of Aggression!
Puppy at Veterinarian - Photo of Puppy at Vet - Photo by Getty Images
Photo by Getty Images

Keeping Your Puppy Healthy

Preferably, you will find a veterinarian before you get a puppy. Within a few days of taking your new puppy home, you should bring him to your vet for a general exam. Your vet can help identify any potential heath issues early on, and advise you on caring for your puppy long-term. This initial visit also opens the doors of communication with you and your vet. Over the course of your puppy's first six months, you will see a lot of your vet. This begins with vaccines and usually leads to spay or neuter. Typically, puppies should be spayed or neutered around six months of age. To help keep your puppy's expenses down, you may consider purchasing pet health insurance, which could cover up to 80% of your dog's health care costs.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Puppies 101 By Jenna Stregowski, RVT.

Bringing a new puppy into your home will change your life forever. Puppies are definitely a lot of work, but the also bring plenty of joy to your world. Whether you are getting your first puppy or just need a refresher course, this is what you'll need to know. From welcoming your new puppy home, to training and health information, these tips will help you get your puppy on the right track to adulthood.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Should I induce vomiting after my dog ingests a toxin? By Jenna Stregowski, RVT

Question: Should I induce vomiting after my dog ingests a toxin?
Answer: Sometimes, but not always.
If you believe that your dog has ingested a dangerous substance, it is essential to act right away. However, you should never induce vomiting without first speaking with a veterinary professional. Begin by calling a veterinarian's office or an animal poison control hotline. You should have the package and a sample of the toxin with you during the phone call, if available. The quicker you can explain what your pet ate, the faster therapy can begin.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Heartworm Prevention Options for Your Dog By Jenna Stregowski, RVT

Heartworm disease is a life-threatening parasitic infection that invades the hearts and lungs of dogs. Because heartworms are spread solely by the mosquito, any dog exposed to mosquitos is at risk. Heartworm disease is a relatively common disease in dogs that has been seen everywhere in the United States. Because of this, the American Heartworm Society currently recommends year-round treatment with a heartworm preventative for all dogs in the US regardless of climate. However, dogs in the Southeast are at the highest risk.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Dog Weight Loss and Maintenance By Jenna Stregowski, RVT

Pug Dog on Scale - Photo © American Images Inc / Getty Images

Obesity in dogs is a growing problem. As with humans, overweight pets are at a high risk for a variety of health issues such as diabetes and heart disease. Weight loss is the key to preventing these health problems or helping to treat them if they have already begun.
Weight loss for dogs is clearly not a matter of willpower for the dog. Owners, however, may need to use willpower to resist those begging eyes. Remember, food is not love! As a reward to your dog, try offering personal attention and toys.