There is no doubt that animals are capable of forming strong bonds with the people and pets in their lives. It is therefore understandable for us to wonder if they are capable of comprehending loss. A common question asked by pet owners is whether or not their pets grieve the death of another pet?
The answer is that while we do not truly know how they are feeling, most pets exhibit signs of stress after the loss of a housemate. Incidentally many of these behaviors are similar to the ones exhibited by children experiencing sadness and grief.
While we cannot say that pets understand the concept and permanence of death, their stress response suggests that they do acknowledge and feel the absence of their companion’s presence.
A study conducted by the New Zealand Companion Animal Counsel surveyed the owners of 159 dogs and 152 cats. This study found that both dogs and cats exhibited stress behaviors following the death of a housemate.
So how can we help our beloved pets move forward?
Watching your furry family member go through signs of grief is not easy. However, there are a few things that we can do to help them through this process.
If your pet has stopped eating, is having vomiting or diarrhea, or is otherwise acting lethargic, please contact your Veterinarian.
Grief is a complex process that takes time. Every pet will process grief differently and, like humans, will experience stress in their own way. Give your pets the time they need and don’t be afraid to lean on each other.
Canine influenza has not been a Northern California health problem until the last few weeks. More than 50 suspected cases of this highly contagious upper respiratory virus have been identified by South Bay Veterinary hospitals since the 1st of the year.
The signs of this illness in dogs are cough, runny nose, fever, lethargy, eye discharge, and reduced appetite, but not all dogs will show signs of illness. The severity of illness associated with canine flu in dogs can range from no signs to severe illness resulting in pneumonia. The percentage of dogs infected with this disease that die is very small.
Most dogs recover within 2 to 3 weeks.
Almost all dogs are susceptible to canine flu infection, and illness tends to spread among dogs housed in kennels and shelters. Canine flu can spread to other dogs by aerosolized respiratory secretions (coughing and sneezing) from infected dogs, by uninfected dogs coming into contact with contaminated objects, and by moving contaminated objects or materials between infected and uninfected dogs. Therefore, dog owners whose dogs are coughing or showing other signs of respiratory disease should not expose their dog to other dogs. Clothing, equipment, surfaces, and hands should be cleaned and disinfected after exposure to dogs showing signs of respiratory disease.
As a precaution we are now requiring all canine boarding and grooming patients to receive the two shot vaccination series for influenza. We will be receiving all coughing dogs as potentially contagious (as we do for other potentially contagious upper respiratory diseases) and give clients specific isolation instructions when coming in for exams and treatment. We will be offering vaccination "clinics" to expedite the vaccination process shortly.
For further information regarding Canine influenza visit the links :
The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to organize and plan a budget for your pet as a means of anticipating both preventive care costs as well as unexpected medical expenses. As far as preventive care is concerned, it is always a good idea to have your pets examined and vaccinated once a year. Also, once your pets are considered "seniors," it is recommended that they see a doctor every six months.
The following list provides estimated costs for routine preventative care;
*Exams - $43-51
*Vaccines (per vaccine) - $20-65
*Heartworm testing per year - $39
*Fecal parasite/Giardia testing per year- $56
*Flea/tick prevention per month - $25
*Heartworm/intestinal parasite prevention per month - $22
*Nail trims and anal gland expression - $40
*Grooming - $25-80
It is also wise to pre-plan for emergency care and unexpected pet care expenses. Here are some examples of unexpected medical costs;
*ACL/TPLO repair (per surgery) - $2500-3500
*Diabetes $450-600 initially and approximately $120-$250 per month
*Feline Urinary Obstruction $750-1500 initially, $3000 if surgery is needed, followed by medication and prescription food at approximately $50 per month
*Pancreatitis - $300-1000
What financial options should you consider???
Pet Insurance: There are several options available for insurance but keep in mind that most pet insurances work as a reimbursement. The charges must be paid by the pet owner at the time that services are rendered and then the insurance company will reimburse the pet owner based on their insurance plan.
Care Credit: Care Credit is a credit based loan that can be used to cover not only the cost of veterinary medical expenses but also human medical expenses. We accept Care Credit as a payment option and offer 6 months no interest when your cost of care is over $200.
Savings Account: You can always set up a pet care specific savings account with any bank or credit union. Adding money to this account every payday will help offset the cost of veterinary care.
See our financial resource page for more information.
Unfortunately, veterinary hospitals are not financially able to extend credit for services. However, with some pre-planning you can take excellent care of your furry friends without breaking the bank!
In the veterinary world, the day after Thanksgiving has long been known as Pancreatitis Friday. Pancreatitis basically means inflammation of the pancreas. The pancreas is a V-shaped organ located behind the stomach and the first section of the small intestine. This organ aids in the metabolism of sugar and the production of insulin.
Why Pancreatitis Friday you ask???
During the holidays, while we humans are over indulging in rich, fatty foods, some of us allow our dogs to indulge as well. Giving our dogs table scraps or a small dish of our Thanksgiving meal may seem like a loving gesture but, this influx of high fat food is often the cause of Pancreatitis.
Symptoms that are associated with Pancreatitis include:
When a dog with symptoms associated with Pancreatitis is presented to the doctor, the doctor will likely perform some or all of the following diagnoses:
If a diagnosis of Pancreatitis is confirmed, the treatment will likely include some or all of the following:
The cost associated with the treatment of Pancreatitis can range from a few hundred dollars to well into the thousands depending on the severity of the case. The best way to avoid this unplanned expense is to keep your dog on their regular diet, even during the holidays. If you must give your furry friend something special, make sure it’s a dog friendly treat. Most dogs really just want to be loved by us, so give your dog what they really crave, love and attention. Take your buddy on a relaxing walk, go on a trip to the pet store, or cuddle up and watch TV together. Your dog will love spending the extra time with you!
Halloween Safety Tips for Your Pets !!
Halloween can be a fun and festive time for you and your furry friends but, it can also be a time of stress and downright DANGER!!
With these helpful tips, we hope that you and your fur babies can safely enjoy the holiday!
1. Beware of ALL chocolate treats!!! Chocolate can be lethal to dogs and cats. Also, avoid any candy or products with the artificial sweetener xylitol. Even a small amount of either chocolate or xylitol can cause vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, or an increased heart rate.
Check out these pet friendly treats for you furry family members:
Peanut Butter and Pumpkin Dog Treats (makes 25)
*2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
*1/2 cup canned pumpkin
*2 tablespoons peanut butter
*1/2 teaspoon salt
*1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
TASTY CAT CLAWS
Makes 18 treats
1/4 cup warm water
5 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons soft margarine
1 tablespoon cod liver oil
1 cup white flour
1/4 cup soy flour
2. Make sure your pets are in a secure area. Every year hundreds of pets go missing during the Halloween holiday. If you can bring your pets indoors, that is the safest option. Unfortunately, pranksters have been known to injure, poison, or steal pets.
3. Keep your pets away for from open doors. Even a friendly dog can be frightened by trick or treaters ringing the doorbell in scary costumes. Be mindful that dogs can easily feel threatened and defensive during the commotion of the holiday.
4. Black and orange cats should stay indoors a few days before and after Halloween. Every year the SPCA reports cases of these cats being abducted during the holiday period.
5. Please do not keep lit pumpkins around your pet. Yes, they are festive and pretty but they can easily be knocked over and cause fires.
6. If you are going to dress up your pets, please make sure they their costumes fit properly and supervise them your pets carefully while they are wearing them.
So, with your safety tool kit packed full, we hope you have fun celebrating with your fur babies this Halloween! If you do decide to opt for a costume, please enter our costume contest!
We’d love to see your photos and know if your “kids” enjoyed their home baked cookies!
Happy Halloween from all of us at Foothill Farms Veterinary Hospital!
February and September are our Dental Awareness Months! Professional dental care is an extremely important and often overlooked form of preventative veterinary medicine. Poor dental health can result in the obvious bad breath, but left untreated can evolve into a wide variety of problems ranging from tooth loss and pain to weight loss and organ dysfunction. The AVMA (American Association of Veterinary Medicine) continues to promote February as National Dental Awareness Month. We at FFVH support this campaign by offering 50% OFF the standard cleaning price for the entire month of February and September.
Utilizing dental radiographs as a key component of the thorough dental evaluation we strive to provide your pets with state of the art care. Most of your pets teeth are hidden under the gum line and are not visible. Dental radiographs help us to reveal and treat painful dental disease. Below are some examples of the benefits of dental cleaning as well as examples of lesions that would have been missed without dental x rays.
Come celebrate World Animal Reiki Day at FFVH on February 5th!! Shelter Animal Reiki Association (SARA) is promoting World Animal Reiki Day to "To raise awareness around the globe of the healing benefits of Reiki for animals as well as honor all animals as our spiritual teachers."
We will be providing FREE animal Reiki treatments between 12-4pm!! There will be gift bags for dogs and cats and a raffle for great prizes including Animal Reiki books and a free Animal Reiki class with Dr. and Shelley Malek! We hope to see you here for Reiki filled fun on February 5th!! #WorldAnimalReikiDay
February is Dental Awareness Month! Professional dental care is an extremely important and often overlooked form of preventative medicine. Poor dental health can result in the obvious bad breath, but left untreated can evolve into a wide variety of problems ranging from tooth loss and pain to weight loss and organ dysfunction. The AVMA (American Association of Veterinary Medicine) continues to promote February as Dental Awareness Month and we at FFVH support this campaign by offering 50% OFF the standard cleaning price the entire month of February. Book now to take advantage of this offer. Space is limited and due to popularity we fill up quickly.
Fleas have been a menace for many families and their pets this year and we are still in the midst of their peak season. When you find yourself dealing with the problem of fleas, it is to your benefit to treat your pets (ALL of them), treat your home, and treat your yard.
The flea life cycle consists of four stages: egg, larvae, pupa, and adult. A flea will transition from the pupa stage to an adult when it senses vibrations, carbon dioxide, or heat in the environment, all of which are indications that there is a food source nearby however, a flea can stay in the pupa stage for an extended amount of time if these variables are not present. Once a female flea has entered the adult stage, it can lay up to 30-50 eggs per day!! Also, adult fleas in the environment can live several months without a food source. We must consider a flea's ability to survive in adverse conditions when treating for fleas on our pets and in the environment.
Fleas Life Cycle. Digital image. CDC - DPDx - Fleas. Global Health, 29 Nov. 2013. Web. 29 July 2015.
Fleas are more than just a nuisance for your family. Fleas can transmit tapeworms to your pet which occurs when an infected flea is ingested. Also, some pets have an allergy to flea saliva which causes an irritation that can lead to incessant scratching and lesions on their skin.
There are a number of products on the market to kill fleas that are on your pet. Unfortunately, not all products available are effective so you must be mindful of what you are buying. Here are some options that we provide for cats and dogs:
Comfortis - monthly oral treatment that kills adult fleas.
Advantage - monthly topical treatment that kills adult fleas, flea eggs, and flea larvae.
Revolution - monthly topical treatment that kills adult fleas and flea eggs. It is also used for the prevention and/or treatment of sarcoptic mites, ear mites, heartworm disease, roundworms, and hookworms.
Comfortis - monthly oral treatment that kills adult fleas. We do not carry all sizes of Comfortis for dogs.
Nexgard - monthly oral treatment that kills adult fleas and American dog ticks, brown dog ticks, lonestar ticks, and black legged deer ticks.
Bravecto - oral treatment given every three months that kills adult fleas and American dog ticks, brown dog ticks, and black legged deer ticks.
Trifexis - monthly oral treatment that kills adult fleas and is used for the prevention and/or treatment of heartworm disease, roundworms, and hookworms.
Sentinel - monthly oral treatment that kills flea eggs and flea larvae and is used for the prevention and/or treatment of heartworm disease, roundworms, hookworms, and whipworms.
Advantage - monthly topical treatment that kills adult fleas, flea eggs, and flea larvae.
Advantix - monthly topical treatment that kills adult fleas, flea eggs, flea larvae, American dog ticks, brown dog ticks, lonestar ticks, black legged dog ticks, and repels biting flies and mosquitoes.
Advantage Multi - monthly topical treatment that kills adult fleas and is used for the prevention and/or treatment of sarcoptic mites, heartworm disease, roundworms, hookworms, and whipworms.
Revolution - monthly topical treatment that kills adult fleas, flea eggs, and is used for the prevention and/or treatment of American dog ticks, sarcoptic mites, ear mites, and heartworm disease.
In addition to using a product to treat your pets, you should also consider treating your home and your yard. There are a number of products available to treat your environment and you must be mindful that not all products are created equal. We carry a spray called Knockout that can be used to treat the inside of your home. You can always call your favorite pest control experts to aid in the treatment of your home and your yard.
Depending on the level of flea infestation in your home and on your pets the process of becoming flea free can take several months so be patient, persistent, and rest assured that there is light at the end of the tunnel!
For more information please visit the article on fleas at peteducation.com.