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Questions and Answers - Veterinary Medicine

Find answers to common small animal veterinary questions here - fleas, parvo, pancreatitis, HGE, Benadryl, aspirin, and more. Learn about veterinary conditions and diseases of dogs and cats.
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Boarding Your Pets
Making an appointment to board your dog or cat at the kennel while you are away is the first step, but don't forget these important tips to make sure everything goes smoothly.

Do Microchips Cause Cancer?
The pet microchips and cancer question has surfaced and re-surfaced over the years, causing worry for those who have had their pets microchipped. Is there a risk? Are microchips worth it? Let’s look at the pros and cons.

Does a Hen Need a Rooster to Lay Eggs?
Keeping chickens for eggs and as pets is popular in both rural and in urban areas. I have kept chickens and geese as pets for 17 years and never tire of watching them root around the yard. I have been asked many times if hens will lay eggs without a rooster around. Do they? How often do they lay eggs? This FAQ addresses these questions and looks...

Safe Dog Walking Etiquette
Letting dogs run up to greet other dogs and people could be more than you bargained for. Here are some tips for safe dog walking.

Laparoscopy In Veterinary Medicine
Many of the diagnostic and treatment options available to humans are also available for animals. Guest Author Dr. Alvaro Larin, DVM, a veterinary surgeon in Miami, Florida, discusses the use of laparoscopy in veterinary medicine, for diagnosing and treating a variety of conditions.

Pet Travel Tip - Finding Petsitters on the Road
Getting there might not be the hardest part. What do you do if you are in a new city and need to leave your pet for a few hours? This viewer offers some great tips to help keep your pet happy and a piece of mind for you while traveling.

Cat Carrier Training
Some people dislike using a carrier for their cat as much as their cats dislike being in it. Here are some tips to make your cat carrier more inviting for your cat, and less struggle for both of you.

Can My Family Become Infested with Lice From Our Pet?
Lice are a commonly diagnosed parasite in people. Often, the family pet gets blamed for the spread of lice to the family. However, in reality, dogs and cats do not pass lice to people.

Rabies in Pets - Dealing with Dogs and Cats That Have Been Exposed to Rabies
Rabies is a zoonotic disease that can be passed from pets to people. If you suspect that your pet is not current on rabies vaccination and has been bitten, please see your veterinarian.

Cat Carriers - share your favorite types of cat carriers and crate training tips
Gone are the days where the only choice for cat transport was a plastic box carrier. While this works well for many cats, we now have options. What are your favorite types of cat carriers. What training tips can you offer for cat carrier happiness?

Vetericyn® - Broad Spectrum Antimicrobial
Vetericyn® is a non-toxic, non-irritating treatment for use on all animals. It is a broad-spectrucm antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal agent and does not harm healthy tissue. Learn more about the use of Vetericyn® for wounds and topical infections.

Review: It's a Dog's Life...but It's Your Carpet
A humorous, sometimes irreverent, look at questions people ask (or wish they could ask) their veterinarian.

Heat Stroke from Groomer Cage Dryer
Heat stroke is a danger in summer months, especially for pets left in parked cars. Another risk factor for heat stroke may not be so obvious: how your pet's hair is dried.

Hot Spots
How to keep your dog "cool" when skin irritations flare up.

Dog Neuter - Was my dog really neutered?
You take your male dog in to be neutered, and after he is back home, it appears that the testicles are still there. Or are they? Learn the answer to this common question, why it may happen, and if you should be concerned.

Preventing Ear Infections in Cats
Preventing an ear infection for your cat may not be totally possible, but there are some things you can do to help make ear infections less likely. Learn some tips for keeping your cat free of ear infections.

Preventing Ear Infections in Dogs
Ear infections are irritating and sometimes painful for your dog so prevention is preferable, if possible. Learn some tips to help you keep your dog free of ear infections.

Complications of Chronic Ear Infections or Otitis in the Cat
Ear infections in cats can lead to many different types of complications. Learn about some of the complications that your cat might experience as a result of an ear infection.

Complications of Chronic Ear Infections or Otitis in the Dog
Otitis and ear infections in the dog are often chronic and can lead to many different types of complications. Learn about some of the complications that occur in a dog with otitis and/or ear infection.

Treatment of Otitis and Ear Infections in Dogs
Otitis and ear infections in dogs can have many different causes and, in order to be successful, treatment of the ear disease must be based on the cause. Learn about the treatment options for canine otitis and ear infections.

Treatment of Feline Ear Infections
Ear infections in cats are irritating and sometimes painful. Treatment must be based on the cause of the infection. Learn about the options for treating feline ear infections.

Symptoms and Diagnosis of Ear Infections in Cats
Ear infections in cats are common. Cat owners should know the symptoms of ear infections and monitor their cat for them. Learn the symptoms of feline ear infections and find out what your veterinarian might need to do to diagnose an ear infection for your cat.

Symptoms and Diagnosis of Otitis in Dogs
Ear infections and otitis are both very common in dogs. Learn to recognize the symptoms of canine ear infections and otitis and how the problem is diagnosed.

Causes of Ear Infections and Otitis in Dogs
Ear infections and otitis in dogs are common and there are many different potential causes. Learn more about the things that cause canine ear problems.

How to Clean Your Dog or Cat's Ears
Cleaning your dog or cat's ears should be part of your regular grooming routine for your pet. Learn how to properly clean your dog or cat's ears.

Pet Summer Safety Tip: Water - Don't Leave Home Without It
Warmer weather is on the way -- are you prepared? This Quick Tip offers a way to have fresh water available on the road for your traveling pet companions.

Summer Pet Safety Tips
Summertime and the living is easy. A nice thought and often true, but not usually without some foresight and planning where pets are concerned. Humans can change into cooler clothes, get inside for the air conditioned coolness and pack a water bottle to stay hydrated. Pets have a harder time of it when the temperatures soar. Learn about the dangers of summer heat, thunderstorm and fireworks phobias, water safety and more in this summertime safety tip archive.

Ear Hematomas in Dogs and Cats
An ear hematoma is an uncomfortable situation for a dog or cat. Learn about the potential causes and the treatment options for canine and feline auricular hematomas.

How to Feed a Cat with Diabetes
Cats with diabetes mellitus require a strictly controlled diet. Find out what, when and how to feed a cat with diabetes.

DAP Spray - Dog Appeasing Pheromone
DAP, or Dog Appeasing Pheromone, spray is a natural and non-toxic aid to calm dogs stressed by loud noises (fireworks, thunder), car rides, meeting new people/new baby, being separated from their people, and other stressful situations.

Glossary Term: Pyotraumatic Dermatitis
Pyotraumatic Dermatitis is more common than you think, especially in dogs. This condition can be seen at any time, but more commonly seen in the warmer months. What does this term mean, and what are the clinical signs seen with this condition?

Can Dogs with Diabetes Be Treated Without Insulin Injections?
Dogs with diabetes are most frequently treated with insulin injections. However, many dog owners would prefer not to give their dog daily injections. Are there alternatives for diabetic dogs besides insulin injections?

Fireworks and Thunder - Tips for Coping with Loud Noise Phobias
How dogs and cats react to loud noises varies widely. Some animals seem unaffected, others will jump through glass windows in terror. For animals that are afraid of loud noises, they can't help it, and the effect often multiplies if left untreated. What works for one pet may not work for another. Here are some things to try to help reduce loud...

How to Feed a Dog with Diabetes
Dogs with diabetes mellitus require a strictly controlled diet. Find out what, when and how to feed a dog with diabetes.

Can Cats with Diabetes Be Treated Without Insulin Injections?
Cats with diabetes are frequently treated with insulin injections. However, as a diabetic cat owner, you may prefer not to give insulin injections to your cat. Are there alternatives to insulin injections for a diabetic cat?

DEET Toxicity in a Cat
DEET is an effective bug repellent for humans, but not recommended for use on pets. At this time (2011), there are no DEET products labeled for use in pets. This toxicology case report details the clinical signs and treatment for a cat sprayed with DEET to protect from insect bites.

Can Feline Diabetes Be Cured?
Feline diabetes is a common endocrine disease in cats. However, if your cat is diagnosed with diabetes mellitus early in the course of disease, it is possible for your cat to go into remission and not require insulin injections or other medications any longer.

Canine and Feline Diabetes - The Somogyi Effect
For dogs and cats with diabetes, overdosage of insulin can lead to a phenomenon known as Somogyi effect. Learn how and why blood glucose levels can actually end up too high in diabetic dogs and cats overdosed with insulin.

Treating Canine Diabetes Mellitus
Canine diabetes mellitus is one of the most commonly diagnosed endocrine diseases in the dog. Learn about the basics of treating a dog for diabetes.

Can Canine Diabetes Be Cured?
Canine diabetes mellitus is a serious disease and is frequently diagnosed in dogs. Although diabetes mellitus can be controlled for your dog, usually through periodic insulin injections, treatment for dogs with diabetes mellitus is usually lifelong and it is unlikely that your dog will ever be cured of the disease.

Veterinary Questions: Leaking Puppy
Fresh from the e-mailbox. A viewer asks: "my puppy is about 7 months old and today she came in with a leakage from her anus that is a light brown color and smells like oil, should I be concerned?"

Monitoring a Dog or Cat with Diabetes
Canine and feline diabetes are both serious diseases in the dog and cat respectively. If your pet has diabetes, he will need to be monitored closely. Learn the basics of how dogs and cats with diabetes are monitored, including the testing that is used to evaluate health and progress.

Treating Feline Diabetes Mellitus
Feline diabetes mellitus is a serious and potentially life-threatening disease. Learn about the basics of treating a cat with diabetes.

How to Do a Blood Glucose Curve for Your Diabetic Dog or Cat
For a diabetic dog or cat, a blood glucose curve is an essential part of evaluating their progress and health. Learn how to perform a blood glucose curve at home for your dog or cat with diabetes.

Hypoglycemia and the Diabetic Dog or Cat
Hypoglycemia is a potential complication of both canine and feline diabetes mellitus. Learn about the symptoms and causes of hypoglycemia in diabetic dogs and cats as well as how to treat it.

Fireworks and Thunder - Loud Noise Phobias
Fireworks aren't just for the 4th of July anymore. We have them to celebrate New Year's Eve, amusement park shows, and baseball games. Same with thunderstorms, while more common in spring and summer, they can happen all year round. Here are resources to learn more about fireworks and thunder problems in pets (loud noise phobias) and how to keep...

Tips for keeping your pet cool and comfortable
The summer heat is on for many of us. While many people enjoy the cool comfort of the air conditioning at work, what about the pets? This article offers some quick tips to making sure your pets are as comfortable as possible during the "dog days of summer".

Pet Microchips - is your dog or cat microchipped?
Thanks to microchips, the small computer chip ID implants used by shelters, rescue groups and veterinarians, thousands of pets have found their way back home. Some pets wandered away and became lost or injured. In some cases, stolen. Many reunions take place months or years after the pet first went missing. Microchips work when tags fall off or...

Summer Fun - Summer Safety
Summer pet safety, keep your pets safe from seasonal hazards

What are the signs seen with antifreeze toxicity in dogs and cats?
Acute cases of antifreeze toxicity (when an animal consumes antifreeze) often present as if the animal is intoxicated with alcohol. This is an emergency situation, and life threatening within hours. Please see your veterinarian immediately. Success of treatment depends on quick treatment.

Heartworm Disease
Learn about the worm life cycle, how this disease is treated, and why prevention is so important.

Heartworms and Heartworm Disease in Cats
Heartworms can infect cats as well as dogs. In cats, heartworm disease tends to show up as respiratory disease rather than heart disease. Feline heartworm disease can be fatal for infected cats.

Patent Ductus Arteriosus (PDA) - A Congenital Heart Disease of Dogs
Heart disease in dogs can have many causes. Patent ductus arteriosus is the most common congenital heart disease in the canine.

Diabetes Mellitus in the Cat
Cats with diabetes mellitus have an abnormally functioning pancreas which results in elevated glucose (or sugar) in the blood stream. Learn more about the causes of feline diabetes mellitus and the symptoms that cats with diabetes mellitus might display.

Diabetes - Living With A Diabetic Dog Or Cat
The diagnosis of diabetes can be daunting. For many people, monitoring blood glucose and giving daily insulin injections to their pets seems like mission impossible. After some time and practice though, managing your diabetic patient can become second nature. What stories and tips can you share with others who live with diabetic pets,...

Summer Dangers Besides the Heat
Familiarizing yourself with common yard and garden hazards and taking some preventative measures now can help you to keep your pets safe all summer long.

Ear Mites
About ear mites in cats and dogs, including risk factors, signs, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and prevention.

Using Ivermectin in Dogs and Cats
Ivermectin in dogs and cats is used for many different purposes. It is also used at many different dosages depending on the reason for treatment. Learn more about the uses of ivermectin in dogs and cats.

Pimobendan (Vetmedin®) in Dogs and Cats
Pimobendan (Vetmedin®)is used in dogs and in cats to treat various types of heart disease. Learn more about how pimobendan can help dogs and cats with heart disease.

Diabetes Mellitus
Diabetes mellitus is a common disease of dogs and cats. Diabetes mellitus occurs when insulin-secreting cells of the pancreas are destroyed and the body is no longer able to regulate glucose (sugar). This results in high levels of glucose in the blood and urine. Learn more about diabetes mellitus in dogs and cats and how this disease is...

Safety and Side Effects of Ivermectin in Dogs and Cats
Ivermectin is used in dogs and cats to treat a variety of parasitic diseases. It is also a popular heartworm prevention medicine. Learn about the safety and side effects of ivermectin for dogs and cats.

Enalapril (Enacard®, Vasotec®) in Dogs and Cats
Enalapril (Enacard®, Vasotec®), an ACE (angiotensin converting enzyme) inhibitor, is used to treat dogs and cats with heart disease, kidney disease and high blood pressure. Learn more about the usages and potential side effects of enalapril in dogs and cats.

Benazepril in Dogs and Cats
Benazepril, also known as Fortekor® or Lotensin®, is used in dogs and cats to treat various conditions. Learn more about the potential uses and possible side effects of benazepril in dogs and cats.

Torn Toenails
How to take care of torn and cut-too-close toenails.

Dogs Left In Cars - Risk of Heat Stroke on Warm Days
Every year I see pets, especially dogs, left in the car while the owner "runs a quick errand" inside a store or restaurant. The windows are cracked open, the dog will be fine, right? It's only for a few minutes. Considering that the closed up car acts like a greenhouse and the inside temperatures can soar to 120F in "just a few minutes," instead...

Can Ivermectin-Based Heartworm Prevention Medicines Be Used in Collie Breeds?
Ivermectin is commonly used as a heartworm prevention medicine in dogs. However, some breeds of dog such as Collies and similar breeds can have a gene mutation known as MDR1. How safe is ivermectin for collies and similar breeds of dogs?

Causes of Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM) Related Heart Disease in Dogs
Heart disease in dogs is a common diagnosis. In large breed dogs, dilated cardiomyopathy is the most common cause of heart disease. Learn more about canine dilated cardiomyopathy and what causes this heart disease in dogs.

Tricuspid Valve Disease - Heart Disease Related to the Tricuspid Valve in Dogs
Though valvular heart disease in dogs is most commonly caused by mitral gland degeneration, tricuspid valve degeneration can also occur. Learn about how heart disease and heart failure can result from tricuspid valve disease in dogs and about the signs of this type of canine heart disease.

Furosemide (Lasix®) in Dogs and Cats
Furosemide (Lasix®) is used in dogs and cats to treat congestive heart failure and other causes of fluid build-up in the lungs and elsewhere. Learn more about how and when furosemide is used to treat dogs and cats.

Diagnosing and Monitoring Canine Valvular Heart Disease
Canine heart disease is common and valvular heart disease is the most common cause of heart disease in dogs. Learn about the methods veterinarians use to diagnose mitral and tricuspid valve heart disease and read about ways to monitor your dog at home.

Treatment of Heart Disease Caused by Degenerative Valve Disease in Dogs
Heart disease in dogs caused by degeneration of the mitral and/or tricuspid valves is a common diagnosis. Learn about the medications and techniques commonly used to treat valvular heart disease in dogs.

Mitral Valve Disease - The Most Common Cause of Valvular Heart Disease in Dogs
Heart disease is common in dogs. Valvular heart disease is the most common cause of heart disease and is especially common in small breed dogs. The mitral valve is the valve of the heart that is most often affected. Learn more about mitral valve disease in dogs.

Diagnosing Dilated Cardiomyopathy and Screening Dogs for Heart Disease
Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is a common heart disease in large breed dogs. Learn what techniques are used to diagnose dogs that are sick because of DCM and how healthy dogs can be screened for heart disease caused by dilated cardiomyopathy.

Treatment and Prognosis of Dilated Cardiomyopathy in Dogs
Canine dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is a heart disease that affects large breed dogs most often. Learn about the treatment options for dogs that have dilated cardiomyopathy and the prognosis for dogs diagnosed with heart disease caused by DCM.

Signs of Heart Disease Caused by Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM) in Dogs
Dogs with dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) can suffer from all of the signs of heart failure. Learn about the signs of heart disease in dogs caused by dilated cardiomyopathy.

Hairballs
Hairballs are common problems for cats, rabbits, ferrets. Trichobezoars are occasionally found in dogs and humans too. Learn why they are formed, signs to watch for, and how to treat and prevent hairball formation.

Treatment of Heartworm Disease in Dogs - Slow Kill Versus Immiticide Treatment
Heartworm treatment in dogs is risky with any method. Learn about the relative risks of the slow kill method with monthly ivermectin-containing heartworm preventive medications versus using melarsomine (Immiticide®) to treat canine heartworm disease.

Aspirin
Can you give a pet aspirin? Read the answer to this common question.

Dog Eye Diseases
Common eye diseases of dogs, including Cherry Eye, Eyelash Problems, Entropion. If your dog is pawing at, rubbing or shows signs of pain or irritation around the eyes, seek veterinary help as soon as possible, as eye conditions can change quickly.

Signs of Heartworm Disease in Dogs
Canine heartworm disease is a potential cause of heart failure as well as damage to the lungs in dogs. Learn about heartworms and the signs of heartworm disease in infected dogs.

Treatment of Heartworm Disease in Dogs
Treatment of heartworm disease in dogs is possible but is not without risk. Learn about the options available for treating a dog with heartworm disease and the risks involved with treatment of canine heartworm disease.

Valvular Heart Disease in Dogs - The Basics of Canine Degenerative Valve Disease
The most common cause of heart disease in dogs, especially small breed dogs, is valvular heart disease. Learn how disease of the mitral and tricuspid valves of the canine heart can cause heart disease and heart failure for affected dogs.

Book Review: Social Media for Veterinary Professionals
These days, veterinary practices, like all businesses, need to be online. Not having the time, money, or skills to create a web site or manage social media is no excuse, because whether you are online or not, your clients are. And they are talking about your practice. This book, authored by veterinary practice manager Brenda Tassava CVPM CVJ,...

Kit4Cat Litter Box Sand for Cat Urine Collection
Kit4Cat is a way to easily collect cat urine for analysis at home or in the clinic. This photo gallery is a companion piece to my review of this product, showing how "hydrophobic" sand works.

Heartworm Disease in Dogs and Cats
Heartworm disease is caused by a parasite that lives mainly in the blood vessels of the lung and in the heart. Heartworm disease has been seen in several species, but dogs are very susceptible. Cats can be severely affected even by only a single heartworm. Heartworm disease may be fatal and difficult to treat, but fortunately heartworm disease...

Kit4Cat - Hydrophobic Litter Box Sand for Urine Collection and Analysis
Kit4Cat is a new way to easily and collect cat urine for analysis. Unlike other non-absorbent materials, sand is a natural litter box material, cats use this readily. Urine is easily suctioned up with the enclosed pipette. This method of urine collection is less invasive than a cystocentesis (collecting urine via a needle into the bladder), and...

Aspirin
Can you give a pet aspirin? Read the answer to this common question.

My Stinky Dog
What to do when shampoo isn't enough...

Tapeworms: What wormer is best?
Tapeworms are a very common parasite of dogs and cats. Most commonly transmitted by fleas, this parasite is also transmissible to humans who accidentally eat an infected flea (i.e. infants and children). Treatment for tapeworm infection in pets is easy if the correct drug is used.

Docked Tail
Ear cropping is banned in many countries but still allowed in the United States. Learn more about this elective, cosmetic surgery performed on some breeds of dogs.

Feline Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM)
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is the most common heart disease diagnosed in cats. Learn how feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is treated and the prognosis for cats with HCM.

Diagnosing and Treating Feline Dilated Cardiomyopathy
Feline dilated cardiomyopathy is one of the forms of heart disease seen in cats. Learn about how dilated cardiomyopathy in cats is diagnosed and how it is treated.

Refractory Epilepsy and/or Seizures in Dogs and Cats
Seizures and epilepsy in dogs and cats are sometimes not responsive to treatment. Learn about some of the reasons your dog or cat may have refractory epilepsy and seizures that continue with medication.

Potassium Bromide (KBr) for Treating Seizures in Dogs and Cats
Seizures caused by epilepsy in dogs and cats can be treated with several different medications, including potassium bromide (KBr). Learn about how potassium bromide is used in canine and feline epilepsy, its advantages and disadvantages and potential side effects.

Treating Heart Disease and Heart Failure in Dogs and Cats
Heart disease and heart failure in dogs and cats can be quite serious. Learn about the different medications commonly used to treat heart disease and congestive heart failure for dogs and cats.

Is Heart Disease the Same as Heart Failure?
Heart disease in dogs and cats is commonly diagnosed and in many cases will eventually lead to heart failure. Learn the difference between heart disease and heart failure in dogs and cats.

Anti-Seizure Medications
Phenobarbital is the medication that is most commonly used to treat seizures and epilepsy in dogs and cats. There are other medications for canine and feline seizures too. Learn more about traditional and newer seizure control medications.

Diazepam (Valium®) in Dogs and Cats
Diazepam (Valium®) is used for several purposes in dogs and cats. Read about the usages and the potential side effects of diazepam for dogs and cats.

Gabapentin in Dogs and Cats
Gabapentin can be used in dogs and cats to relieve pain and treat seizures. Learn about the uses of gabapentin in dogs and cats and how it can be used to treat seizures and/or pain.

Levetiracetam (Keppra®) in Dogs and Cats
Levetiracetam (Keppra®) is an anti-epileptic drug that can be used to treat seizures in dogs and cats. Read about how levetiracetam can help prevent seizures in dogs and cats and about the potential side effects of levetiracetam in dogs and cats as well.

Treating Canine Seizures and/or Epilepsy with Felbamate
Dogs frequently suffer from seizures and/or epilepsy. Felbamate is one of the new generation antiepileptic drugs that is being used to treat seizures in dogs. Find out more about using felbamate to treat seizures in dogs.

Frequently Asked Questions About Seizures in Dogs and Cats
Seizures and epilepsy are a common diagnosis in both dogs and cats. Learn the answers to frequently asked questions about epilepsy and other seizure disorders in dogs and cats.

Docked Tails - What is your opinion of cosmetic tail docking in dogs?
Tail docking is amputation of the tail. Sometimes there is a medical reason for these surgeries, such as repeated or non-healing injuries. For many breeds, the reason is cosmetic. What is your opinion of tail docking for cosmetic reasons?

Westminster 2011 - Veterinary Professionals and Service Dogs
Westminster 2011 - Veterinary Professionals and Service Dogs at the 135th Westminster Dog Show

Westminster 2011 - Veterinary Professionals and Service Dogs
Westminster 2011 - Veterinary Professionals and Service Dogs at the 135th Westminster Dog Show

Ear Crops and Tail Docks - What is your opinion of cosmetic ear crops and...
Ear cropping is when the floppy ear portion of some dog breeds is surgically removed - amputated - to make the ear stand up. Tail docking is done for some breeds and is the amputation of the tail, the length of remaining portion of tail is determined by the breed standard. Sometimes there is a medical reason for these surgeries. Many times the...

Why Does My Dog Hyperventilate When Excited?
A viewer asks: "My two year old dog, 'Puppy,' hyperventilates when family members visit. Sometimes it lasts too long for my comfort. Do you have any suggestions that will help Puppy?" This FAQ explores some possible causes for this dog to have abnormal respiration when excited.

Seizures in Cats
Seizures are one of the most common neurological problems seen in cats and dogs. A seizure happens when the cerebral cortex, part of the brain, functions abnormally. There are many different diseases that can cause seizures in dogs and cats. Sometimes, as in the case of idiopathic epilepsy, the cause of seizure activity is unknown.

Seizures in Cats
Seizures are one of the most common neurological problems seen in cats and dogs. A seizure happens when the cerebral cortex, part of the brain, functions abnormally. There are many different diseases that can cause seizures in dogs and cats. Sometimes, as in the case of idiopathic epilepsy, the cause of seizure activity is unknown.

Dog and Cat Vaccinations - How do you feel about dog and cat vaccinations?
It used to be that dogs and cats were examined and vaccinated every year, as soon as that reminder card came in the mail. In recent years, with the development of new vaccine technologies and ways to assess risks and protection levels, thoughts on vaccination protocols have changed. Many veterinarians now follow the The American Animal Hospital...

Seizures and Epilepsy in Dogs and Cats
Seizures are one of the most common neurological problems that are seen in both dogs and cats. Seizures have many possible causes and signs seen vary with the animal and the cause. Learn more about seizures in pets - the signs, possible causes, diagnosis and treatment options in this collection of resources.

Treating Canine Seizures or Epilepsy
Canine seizures or epilepsy can be treated in many different ways. Learn about the medications used to treat seizures or epilepsy in dogs.

Treating Cats with Epilepsy and/or Seizures
Seizures or epilepsy can occur in cats. Learn about the medications that are used to treat seizures and epilepsy in cats.

Phenobarbital for Treating Seizures and Epilepsy in Dogs and Cats
Phenobarbital is commonly used to treat seizures and epilepsy in dogs and cats. Learn how phenobarbital works in dogs and cats. Find out the benefits and possible side effects of using phenobarbital for your dog or cat.

Canine Seizures - Causes of Seizures in Dogs
Seizures in dogs can occur for many different reasons. Explore the various causes of canine seizures.

Causes of Seizures in Cats
Feline seizures can have many different causes. Learn about the diseases and conditions that can cause seizures in cats.

What is Status Epilepticus and How Does It Affect Dogs and Cats
Status epilepticus is defined as a persistent state of seizure. Learn how status epilepticus can affect dogs and cats and what you should do if your dog or cat has a seizure that will not stop.

Diagnosing Seizures and Epilepsy in Dogs and Cats
Seizures are a common problem in dogs and are sometimes seen in cats also. Seizures may be due to epilepsy or to other diseases or conditions. Learn how veterinarians diagnose the cause of canine and feline seizures and/or epilepsy.

Comparing Canine and Feline Seizures to Other Diseases or Conditions
Canine and feline seizures are a common neurological occurrence. However, there are a few other diseases that can appear similar to a seizure in a dog or cat. Learn what conditions to look for and how to tell them apart from a seizure in your dog or cat.

What To Do if Your Dog or Cat Is Having a Seizure
Watching your dog or cat have a seizure is a frightening experience. Learn how to take care of your dog or cat if he does have a seizure.

Seizures in Cats - Types of Feline Seizures
Seizures are not as common in cats as they are in dogs. However, they can occur and can be focal or generalized. Learn how to recognize the appearance of a cat seizure.

Canine Seizures - Types of Seizures in Dogs
Seizures can occur in dogs and can take several different forms. Learn the different types of seizures which dogs can suffer and how to recognize a canine seizure.

Heart Disease in Cats
Heart disease in cats is common, but often asymptomatic. Learn to recognize the signs of heart problems in cats, various causes, diagnostic and treatment options, and how to manage your heart patient pet at home. Related: Heart Diease in Dogs

Meet Mike the Bluetick Coonhound
In this interview, meet Mike, a Bluetick Coonhound, shown by Susan Lloyd, a veterinarian from North Carolina. This is the first appearance of the Bluetick Coonhound breed at Westminster. This breed is joined by 5 other "new breeds" for 2011: the Boykin Spaniel, Redbone Coonhound, Cane Corso, Leonberger, and the Icelandic Sheepdog.

Heart Disease in Cats

Heart disease in cats is common, but often asymptomatic. Learn to recognize the signs of heart problems in cats, various causes, diagnostic and treatment options, and how to manage your heart patient pet at home.

Heart Disease in Cats

Heart disease in cats is common, but often asymptomatic. Learn to recognize the signs of heart problems in cats, various causes, diagnostic and treatment options, and how to manage your heart patient pet at home.

Westminster Dog Show 2011
The coverage for the 135th Westminster Dog Show will focus on working dogs and veterinary professionals who show dogs at this show. We check back in with Terri Marks DVM, who we met in 2008 with her Mastiff Bo and revisted in 2010 with her French Bulldog, Porter . This year, we will meet many more interesting dogs and their people at this...

Dilated Cardiomyopathy in Cats
Dilated cardiomyopathy is one of the types of cardiomyopathies that can cause heart disease in cats. Learn about the causes and signs of feline dilated cardiomyopathy.

Symptoms and Diagnosis of Cats with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM)
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, or HCM, is a commonly diagnosed heart disease in cats. Learn to recognize the symptoms of feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and find out how HCM is diagnosed in the cat.

Heart Disease in Dogs and Cats - Tell us about your pet's heart disease
Heart disease is common in dogs and cats. The signs can be difficult to detect at first, but coughing, exercise intolerance, and difficulty breathing are common signs of heart (and lung) problems. Some heart diseases, such as heartworm, are preventable and treatable. Some conditions (e.g.) murmurs may be a congenital problem. What signs did you...

Types of Cardiomyopathies in Cats
Cardiomyopathies are common heart diseases in cats. While the majority of feline cardiomyopathies are hypertrophic, they may also be dilated, restrictive or unclassified.

Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) in Cats
In cats, HCM or hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a serious heart disease. Find out what causes feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

Meet Rufus The Bull Terrier Therapy Dog

Westminster Dog Show Index
The first Westminster Dog Show was held in 1877 and has a rich history . This show is America's second-longest continuously held sporting event, behind only the Kentucky Derby. The show is held on the second Monday and Tuesday of February. This page is an archive of my coverage of this event, starting in 2008. Feature stories include therapy...

What causes a bad odor around eyes?
A viewer asks: "My Shih Tzu has an bad odor around his eyes. What causes that?" This is a common problem and one that needs daily attention to help keep odors and skin inflammation under control.

Stinky Pets

Bad odors in dogs and cats may indicate a health problem such as dental disease, anal sac abscess, infected ears, or a hot spot. In other cases, a bad odor may simply indicate that the pet needs a bath. Learn to smell the difference and visit your vet when needed.

Hemorrhagic Gastroenteritis (HGE)
HGE, or Hemorrhagic Gastroenteritis, is a potentially life-threatening diarrheal disease with no known cause. Learn about this disease, and why it is important to seek veterinary care early for a successful recovery.

Heart Murmurs in Cats
Heart murmurs are occasionally heard in cats and do indicate the presence of heart disease. However, the severity of the heart disease cannot be evaluated by the sound of the heart murmur itself.

Adoption Success - share your stories and tips for pet adoption and rescue...
The decision to add a new pet to the family is one that should not be taken lightly. Stories of animals being returned to the shelter, for whatever reason, are heartbreaking.The inspiring story of Kelsey the Twice-Adopted dog offers good advice about making a potentially difficult adoption work. Patience, commitment and training are keys for...

How did your adopted pet change your life?
Adoptions of dogs, cats and other pets happen in many ways - strays that show up on your doorstep, shelter adoptions, via breed rescue groups, meet and greets at public events, and sometimes through your veterinarian. How did you find your new best friend? Was it love at first site, or an adoption after much consideration? Please tell us about...See submissions

Signs of Heart Disease in the Cat
Heart disease and heart failure are commonly seen in cats. Learn to recognize the symptoms of feline heart disease and heart failure.

Signs of Heart Disease in the Dog
The symptoms of heart disease in dogs are a result of heart failure. Learn to recognize the signs of canine heart disease and heart failure.

Causes of Heart Disease in Dogs
Heart disease in dogs is common. Canine heart disease can have many different causes.

Diagnosing Canine and Feline Heart Disease and Heart Failure
Canine and feline heart disease is common and can be life-threatening. Learn how heart disease and heart failure is diagnosed in dogs and cats.

Causes of Heart Disease in Cats
Heart disease in cats can be a devastating disease. There are many different diseases that can cause feline heart disease.

Heart Murmurs in Dogs
Heart murmurs are frequently heard in dogs and may indicate the presence of heart disease. However, the severity of the heart disease cannot be evaluated by the sound of the heart murmur itself.

Home Care of a Dog or Cat with Heart Disease or Heart Failure
Heart disease and/or heart failure is a frightening diagnosis for a pet owner. Learn how to care for and what to watch for if your dog or cat has heart disease or is suffering from heart failure.

Vacation Checklist for Pet Caretakers
This list is a general "before the trip" preparedness checklist to help make your trip as worry free as possible. Your pet may have special needs not covered on this list. I have found that if I mentally make my deadline for getting everything done 2 days before I leave, that leaves plenty of time for "last minute emergencies" and trips to the...

Dental Care: Tips for taking care of your pet's teeth
Puppies and kittens lose their "baby" teeth in the first year. Getting your pet used to having their mouth examined and teeth brushed is a good start to healthy teeth and gums. As pets age, dental tartar and plaque may affect not only the teeth, but gums, heart and internal organs as well. Here are some dental health resources to keep your pet...

Anipryl® - Help for Senior Dogs?
If your pet has a clean bill of health, but showing behavioral signs of "old age," you may want to speak to your veterinarian about a medication called Anipryl®. This drug has been approved to help animals with cognitive dysfunction. Your results may vary, but for some animals it has worked well for dementia-related symptoms.

Chocolate Toxicity

Chocolate toxicity is one of the number one concerns of pet lovers, even though there are other foods and household items that are much more toxic. Here are the top chocolate questions about pets eating chocolate.

How Much Chocolate is Toxic to Dogs and Cats?
The answer to "how much chocolate is toxic" varies widely on the type of chocolate, size of dog or cat, and how much they have consumed. Here are some guidelines and calculators to see how much is too much for each situation.

How is chocolate toxicity treated?

Pet Health and Veterinary Apps for Smartphones and Computers
In September 2009, I reviewed the Jive Media Pet First Aid app. Since then, the app (short for "application" - a program for smartphones, iPads and computers) market has grown tremendously. Pet health apps are part of that growth. What are your favorite pet-related apps? Have they helped your pet in a time of crisis or to achieve a healthier...

New Year's Resolutions for Pets - What Are Your New Year's Resolutions for...
I am not a big fan of making resolutions for my pets or myself. It seems to be a set up for disappointment. That said, I am a fan of being aware of positive changes and the power of telling someone else or writing it down. Small steps are best, and 100% compliance isn't necessary for success, but this leads to more steps and more positive...

Treating Dogs and Cats with Allergies Caused by Atopy
Atopy is frequent cause of allergies in dogs and cats. Learn about the treatment of allergies caused by atopy in dogs and cats.

Common Causes of Hair Loss and Scratching in Dogs and Cats
Hair loss and scratching in dogs and cats are commonly seen symptoms. There are many diseases that can cause hair loss and scratching in dogs and cats. These are some of the most common causes.

Skin Problems in Dogs and Cats - Secrets to Prevent Skin Problems in Dogs and...
Skin Problems in Dogs and Cats - Secrets to Prevent Skin Problems in Dogs and Cats

Most Common Causes of Allergies in Dogs and Cats
Allergies in dogs and cats are a common cause of skin problems. Fleas, substances in the environment and foods are the most common causes of allergies in dogs and cats.

Dermatitis in Dogs and Cats Caused by Bacterial and Yeast Infections
Yeast and bacterial infections can contribute to dermatitis in dogs and cats. Treatment of yeast and bacterial infections in dogs and cats involves anti-fungal medications and antibiotics, respectively.

Canine and Feline Flea Allergy Treatment
Flea allergies in dogs and cats are common causes of skin disease. Treatment of flea allergies in dogs and cats requires controlling the flea infestation.

Diagnosing Hair Loss and Scratching in Dogs and Cats
Hair loss and scratching in dogs and cats are frequent causes of veterinary visits. There are several diagnostic tests your veterinarian will want to perform to help diagnose the cause of hair loss and scratching in your dog or cat.

Foods Toxic to Pets - Yeast Bread Dough
Dough that has yeast in it poses a hazard to pets who consume it in large quantity. The risks are two-fold. The first risk is that the dough may rise after ingestion, causing intestinal obstruction. Secondly, the yeast can ferment sugars, creating a secondary problem of ethanol (alcohol) poisoning in the animal. Ahna Brutlag DVM and Justine A....

New Year's Resolutions for Pets & Their People
It is the start of a new year, and people's thoughts often turn to diet and exercise, making up for holiday indulgences. But there are more things to consider than simply diet and exercise when it comes to being a good pet owner and animal lover. Here, in no particular order, are 10 tips to a healthier lifestyle for animals in need and our own...

Iron Toxicity in Dogs and Cats
Iron toxicosis in pets (usually dogs) is most often seen after eating large quantities of vitamins and mineral supplements especially iron-heavy pre-natal vitamins. These tablets be sugar-coated, making them attractive to dogs. Other possibilities include disposable hand warmers and some types of fertilizers. Learn what signs are seen with iron...

Treatment of Dogs and Cats with Food Allergy
Food allergy in dogs and cats can cause skin disease, itching and scratching. Treatment for food allergy in dogs and cats requires feeding protein and carbohydrate sources to which your dog or cat is not allergic.

Common Symptoms of Dog and Cat Allergies
Allergies are a common problems in dogs and cats. Allergies in dogs and cats can cause skin and ear problems as well as other symptoms.

Beware of Batteries
Batteries of all shapes and sizes are in many everyday objects. We know to keep batteries out of reach of pets, but what about the TV remote, cell phone, toys, or other small chewable items that require batteries? Batteries contain acidic or alkaline chemicals, heavy metals, and the lithium button batteries may even pass an electric current to...

Holiday Hazards - String Things
Pets are naturally curious, and the "newness" of holiday decorations, gifts, and toys (even those intended for pets) can be enticing to check out, or chew up. This Quick Tip is a reminder of items that pose a hazard for a condition known as a linear foreign body.

Poisonous Holiday Plants
Bright ornamental plants are a great way to dress up the house during the holidays and a dreary winter. Pet owners should be aware however, that many of these common plants are poisonous to pets. Gastrointestinal upset is the most common finding, but if enough plant material is ingested, seizures, coma or death is possible. Read this Quick Tip...

Sophie the Dog: My Personal Story of Pet Shelter Adoption
I wanted to help animals in need and decided to donate some pet food to my local shelter. I have to be honest... I was a little intimidated by the thought. I have, of course, worked with shelters and rescue animals over the years, and quite frankly, it can be depressing. Too many animals. Too few homes. So I sent my husband on this errand....

Meet Our New Adopted Dog
Inspired by my friends on Twitter, the Iams Home for the Holidays campaign, plus just being the "right time" for our family, we started checking out available dogs on Petfinder.com. I was a little surprised and encouraged to discover that the first few dogs I checked into had already found homes. Then my husband got involved. He hadn't forgotten...

Online Pet Adoption Guide: Help for those considering adopting a pet
Are you considering adopting a pet? Learn what type of pet is best for you, your family, and your lifestyle. Find photos and information online about adoptable pets in your area. What if you aren't ready to adopt at this time but want to help animals in need? Find out the answers to these questions and more in this online adoption article.

Pet Adoption: Home for the Holidays Part 2
One year ago, we adopted Argos, a retired racing Greyhound. He had quite a racing career, and at 4 years of age, he was used to the scheduled life on the track. It took him a while to get used to a varied and much looser "schedule" and other aspects of living in a home with people and other pets. Here is a recap of the last year.

Tell us about your favorite pet supply store (online or brick and mortar)
Pet supplies - food, toys, beds, treats, and more for dogs and cats is a rapidly growing market. Consumers have many online and brick and mortar choices to shop at these days. Some offer great deals and great service, some do not. Please share your favorite places to shop for pet supplies and food, and why you like them. If you have had a...See submissions

Interview with Joshua Leeds and Lisa Spector, Creators of "Through A Dog's Ear"
When I saw a press release about "clinically demonstrated" music used to calm down dogs in stressful environments or with anxiety behavior problems, I was keenly interested to learn more. How was this music clinically demonstrated, and does it really work? Find out in this in-depth interview with the creators of "Through A Dog's Ear" book and CD.

Kibble Nibble Dog Toy
The Kibble Nibble Dog Toy is a thinking dog treat dispenser. This toy will keep your dog active, thinking and busy. It is a great toy to keep your dog from being bored (and possibly destructive) while you are away, and for times when your dog may be stressed, such as a thunderstorm. My dogs are not highly food motivated, but on the advice of a...

AAHA Helping Pets Fund
The American Animal Hospital Association, or AAHA, is a non-profit veterinary organization that that accredits companion animal veterinary hospitals in the US and Canada. The AAHA Helping Pets Fund helps people provide necessary veterinary care for their pets. To learn more about this fund program, I interviewed Tamara Fox, the AAHA Helping...

Grateful for Pets - How do your pets create an attitude of gratitude?
Pets bring so much to our lives. Ask any pet lover what they are grateful for, and invariably they will respond with "my pets." But what exactly does being grateful for pets mean? Do your pets show appreciation? How do they tell you that they are thankful? Please share your thoughts about pets and gratitude.

Grateful For...
Ask any pet lover what they are grateful for, and invariably they will respond "my pets." But what exactly does that mean? I love my pets and very grateful for every day I get to spend with them. I wouldn't have it any other way! Admittedly, there are those times that I am cleaning up various bodily wastes, feeling sad over items chewed, and...

Rabies vaccinations 1 year or 3 years - what is the difference?
There have been lots of discussions (and confusion) about cat and dog vaccinations. The standard of care for decades was to vaccinate dogs and cats annually for several common diseases. Now the recommendation from most veterinarians is every three years, with careful selection of the vaccines needed for each specific pet. The one exception is...

Top 5 most common holiday calls to Pet Poison Helpline in 2009

I asked veterinary specialists Ahna Brutlag DVM and Justine A. Lee DVM DACVECC to list the top 5 pet safety and poisoning questions they have received during the holidays at Pet Poison Helpline. Here is their list of calls received so far during the 2009 holiday season.

Related Reading
Top 10 Pet Poison Prevention Tips
Icky Things Pets Eat

More from Pet Poison Helpline
Veterinary toxicology case reports and articles

Second opinions - how did you seek answers from another vet or from y…
No matter how much you love your vet, there may come a day when you are unsure of the answers received, or you have remaining questions about your pet's care. Should you seek a second opinion? This may be as simple as scheduling some time to talk and ask questions of your current vet. Other times, you may want to see another vet or a veterinary specialist for an opinion. What worked getting your …

What can we do about our sock-eating dog?
A forum member asked this question: "My 3 yr. old dog has begun eating my children's dirty socks. He did this a few months ago and we switched his dog food to Purina Dog Chow and it stopped. Been 3 months and he's started again. I'm terrified he's going to choke to death on a sock and as diligent as we are about keeping them picked up - he still seems to find one. If this is a food issue, can any…

Holiday Pets – Safety, Fun and Gifts for Your Pets Holidays
Help ensure that your pets are ready for the holidays. Shopping for pets and their people are just part of the preparations. Learn about keeping your pets safe during the holidays, holiday travel tips, gift ideas for pets, vets and your animal loving friends and family.  The About.com Pet Guides are here to help with a variety of topics on...

Dog Neuter Surgery
Enter the operating room and see a canine castration, more commonly known as dog neuter surgery. This procedure requires general anesthesia maintained with inhalation (gas) anesthetic. Many veterinarians also give IV fluids, monitor heart and respiratory rates, blood pressure, oxygen saturation levels, and give medications to control pain during this surgery. This photo gallery focuses on the sur…

Methods or tools you have used to prevent pets from licking, chewing …
Most people are familiar with the traditional "cone" or e-collar used to prevent dogs and cats from licking, biting or scratching at surgical incisions or wounds. Cumbersome and sometimes uncomfortable for the pet, we now have new versions of this tool that are a nice alternative for many pets. Have you used an "e-collar alternative" for your pet such as inflatable collars or fabric cones? Please…

E-collar "cone" alternatives for dogs and cats
Elizabethan collars, or more commonly known as e-collars, are often used in veterinary medicine and sometimes referred to as a cone, lampshade, or "the cone of shame" as in the movie UP. These cones are used to prevent dogs and cats from biting, scratching and licking wounds, incisions, or other injured areas. Cumbersome and sometimes...

Finding a pet sitter or kennel - share your tips for finding the best…
Our pets are our family. They share our lives, homes and, when possible, travel with us. Sometimes though, traveling with our pets is not feasible. In those times, we must make arrangements for pet care. Will your pet go to a boarding kennel, a friend's house, or will someone come to your house to take care of your pets? There are many things to consider when seeking the "best" care for your pet …

Finding a Veterinarian You Love - Share your tips for finding a veter…
Most of us have experienced needing to find a new vet at some point. Whether you just moved to a new location, adopted a first pet, or need to find a new vet (or specialist) for your current pets, how did you do it? In the "old days" people would turn to the phone book, now more often it is Google. Did a friend recommend a vet or did an...

Meet DrV - Vet Blogger at PawCurious
Veterinarians know the value of client education. A client knowledgeable about pet health will often recognize signs of illness early on and is well-equipped to follow through with diagnostic and treatment plans. Veterinarians have traditionally reached out to clients in the hospital setting. Now, increasing numbers of veterinarians are reaching out to clients via the Internet. Meet one vet who i…

Pet Safety Tips - Keeping pets safe in the home and while traveling
Pets are often unpredictable. They chew things up, they eat things they shouldn't, and get get in places we wouldn't. What have you done to make your household and pet travel times safer for pets? Did you think ahead or learn the hard way? Please share your experiences (and photos if you have them) of ways to keep dogs, cats and other pets safe and healthy.

Cats and Clothes Dryers
Cats are known for wanting to seek out warm and cozy places to curl up in. Unknown to many people, the clothes dryer is one of those places, often ending up in injury or death. I have seen this firsthand, and it is heartbreaking. It is always an unknown mistake by busy people doing laundry. I warn people whenever I can about this very real...

Pet First Aid Kits - Submit Your Tips for Making and Using A …
Building your own pet First Aid Kit can be a daunting task. Here are some kit-building tips for those who want to make their own. There are also many pet First Aid Kits available for purchase. Have you built or used a pet First Aid kit? What items did you find most useful? Please share your kit-building tips and tips for learning about and performing First Aid on pets.

How to Build a First Aid Kit for Your Pet
A pet first aid kit is the first step in being prepared should an animal emergency happen. Just what to put in the pet first aid kit is a common question. While there are many pre-made kits that may be purchased for pets, building your own kit (or adding to a pre-made one) may be the best way to have a kit customized for your pet's lifestyle and...

Meet Forum Host KahluaDanes
Meet our forum host Dale, better known as KahluaDanes, who has helped out in the Veterinary Medicine and other About.com forums for years. Dale is a vet tech with years of experience, I appreciate her veterinary and animal behavior and reproduction background. Thank you Dale!

Skunks - what you need to know if your pet has been sprayed by a skunk
Skunks normally mind their own business, but sometimes they are provoked to spray by an unsuspecting curious pet. What do they spray, why do they spray, and how do you get rid of the odor are common questions answered here. Also, is the spray toxic? Find out what you need to do for post-skunk first aid for your pets to be safe.

Skunked - Tell us about your stinky skunk-pet interactions
Many of us have had the unpleasant realization, usually at night, uh oh, my dog has been skunked! With a direct attack, the odor is often so strong that the amount of skunk oil on the pet may be underestimated. This can lead to bringing the dog or articles of clothing in the house a bit too soon. I have read some accounts of people needed to vacate their home for a few days to deal with the odor.…

What to do if your pet is sprayed in the eyes with skunk spray
Dogs, whether just curious or in "attack" mode, often find out what a skunk is with a spray of that offensive spray up close; in their face. A common question is "how do I get skunk spray out of my dog's eyes?" Is the skunk spray harmful and should you worry beyond the horrible stench? Read this tip for skunk spray first aid.

Skunked! Why skunks spray and how to remove the odor from skunks
Your dog barks frantically, or maybe zooms off in another direction. Then you smell it. Skunk! I think that this has happened to each dog I have lived with at some point in their life. Some escape with just a spritz, other dogs come back dripping in skunk juice. Not good. Learn about skunks, why and how they spray, and what to do if you get skunked.

Protect Your Pet from Wild Animal Attacks
Wild animals sting, bite, and poke our pets. What animals should you be concerned about? This depends on where you live. Here are some tips to keep your pet safe while camping, hiking or out in the backyard.

Tongue Tip - Turn off paper shredder auto run setting to project your…
Curious pets and auto-run paper shredding machines can be a dangerous mix. This type of story appears every so often in the news and is not an urban legend; pets and small children really do get injured by these machines. Usually the damage occurs by a machine set to turn on as soon as paper is inserted, but sometimes children helping parents shred papers are also victims.

Animal Emergencies - Keep Numbers in Your Cell Phone to be Prepared f…
Most people have their vet's phone number close at hand, if not memorized. What about other types of animal emergencies? Do you know who to call and what the phone number is? Having emergency phone numbers stored in your phone could make all of the difference if you find an animal injured on a dark road at night.

Money saving tips to help pet lovers afford vet care, food an…
These are tough economic times for people and pets, and sadly, record numbers of animals are being abandoned and surrendered at shelters. Some people are even having to make difficult decisions regarding euthanasia when faced with pet health problems and high vet bills (also known as "economic euthanasia"). In spite of this depressing news, there are ways to help. Please share what works for you …

Interview with Dr. Nancy Kay - Author of Speaking For Spot
Nancy Kay DVM DACVIM, is the author of Speaking For Spot, a book about pet patient advocacy. I reviewed Speaking For Spot and found it to be an excellent resource for both pet lovers and veterinarians. I was pleased that Dr. Kay was available for an interview. Now viewers can get to know her better and learn about the "how and why" of this book.

Twitter: Do You Tweet?
I had looked at Twitter before, but just didn't "get" it and figured it was not for me. Thank goodness Trisha Torrey, Guide to Patient Empowerment at About.com introduced me to Twitter. While a bit confusing at first, Twitter is a great way to learn new things and meet people with similar veterinary interests.

Money and Pets: Taking Care of Our Pets in Tough Economic Times
News of tough economic times is everywhere, every day. People are spending less on themselves and on their pets. What have you sacrificed in terms of pet food or pet care? See how others are coping, and learn some money-saving tips to use at the food store and the veterinary office.

Flea Question: What are those little "black pepper" spots on my dog?
This Frequently Asked Question is from Margaret. My question is: my dog has these little black things in her fur that like little spots of black pepper. I took one off him today and it is real hard and cracks when I put it between my fingers. He has many of them on his little body. He went to the groomers last month and she didn't say anything...

Pet Supplies and Food: Save Money with eCoupons
This tip is a companion piece to the "Ways to Save Money on Pet Care and Vet Bills" article. Many online retailers offer discounts and money-saving coupon on pet supplies and food. Find out how to start saving here.

9 Ways to Save Money on Pet Care and Vet Bills
Pets not only require our time and attention, they require our money, too. Food, vaccinations, and veterinary medical care all add up. In today's tough economy, people are rethinking their personal expenses and cutting the budget where they can. Here are some tips to keep your pet in good health while saving money.

Veterinary Pet Care and How-To Videos
Learn pet care and nutrition tips and watch how to administer medications, groom your pet and assess the optimal weight and body condition.

Veterinary Knowledge Quizzes
Test your knowledge about veterinary terminology, diseases and parasites.

Anthrax
Veterinary and human information about this much-talked about zoonotic disease.

BARF Diet
The diet with the interesting name -- the "Bones And Raw Food" or "Biologically Appropriate Raw Foods" (BARF) diet, has people talking. Read about this method of feeding your pet, and what our viewers have to say about it.

Chocolate Toxicity
Chocolate is toxic to pets. How much is too much?

Bugs & Benadryl®
Learn what an insect bite/sting allergic reaction looks like in a dog (photos), and a viewer's account of using Benadryl® to counteract an allergic reaction in her dog.

Catnip
Is Catnip safe? Why do some cats go crazy with Catnip?

Dental Health
Do pets need their teeth cleaned? Yes! Learn about pet dental health, and how to keep your pet's teeth healthy.

Fleas: Be Free of Fleas -- Part I
A discussion of the flea lifecycle, and why it is important to understand for total flea control.

Fleas: Be Free of Fleas -- Part II
Make the fleas flee! Learn about the variety of flea products that are available today, and why using a combination of products is essential to be flea-free.

Finding the right petsitter for your pets
I am not a frequent traveler. I am not sure if this is because I prefer staying home or the fact that I have so many pets. I have to be honest; the single biggest stressor for me as a traveler is what to do with my pets! This article was written to be used as a checklist for finding the most suitable caretaker for your pets when you are traveling.

Holiday Eating & Pets
Holiday feeding guidelines to keep your pet healthy.

Itching, Scratching, and Hair Loss
What makes your pet itch, and what you can do to help soothe and protect your pet's skin.

Lipomas (fatty tumors)
A common lump in dogs, occasionally seen in cats. It is always advisable to have every lump checked out by your vet.

Mad Cow Disease (BSE)
What causes Mad Cow disease? What are the symptoms in cattle?

Neuter Surgery in Dogs and Cats
Learn about this common surgery, also known as castration, and why it is important for the health of your pet.

Medication: Why won't my vet just refill my pet's prescription?
Pet owners commonly ask why they can't get a medication refilled for their pet without an examination. Whether for a recurring infection or a chronic condition that requires medication, your vet will likely want to see your pet on a regular basis prior to dispensing medication. Read this FAQ to learn the reasons why a check-in with the vet is required in most cases.

Pancreatitis
Fatty foods and other risk factors for this disease. Find out what to watch for.

Parasites - Danger Lurks In Your Home And Garden!
The team at Farnam Pet Products discuss pests that pose health risk to pets and humans. Parasite illustrations included. First in a 5 part series on pet parasites.

Poisonings in Pets
Learn how to identify a possible poisoning, and how to keep your pet safe.

Rabies
Health alert information about this fatal viral disease that is transmissible to humans.

Pet Care: How To Choose A Petsitter Or Kennel For Your Pet
Pets are part of the family and should have thorough, conscientious care while we are away. Here's how to choose the best pet care for your pet when you are away.

Good Grooming: A Matter of Life and Health
Good grooming isn't just for looks -- keeping your pet groomed is important for overall health, too. Learn why "good grooming" is more than brushing your pet's coat -- it is an healthy way to view your pet's home care and prevent costly (and often unnecessary) trips to the vet's office.

Salivary Gland Cyst (Sialocoele or Mucocoele)
Learn about this condition also called sialocele or salivary mucocele.

Seizures (Epilepsy)
How to identify a seizure and what medications are available to control seizures.

Senior Cats
The feline senior years -- what to expect, when to call the vet.

Senior Dogs
The canine senior years -- what to expect, when to call the vet.

Should I Call the Vet?
Is my pet really sick, or should I wait to call the vet?

Should I Call the Vet? - Part II
Arthritis in pets, excess water drinking, and spaying older animals.

Toxoplasmosis - A Zoonotic Disease Involving Cats and People
Toxoplasmosis is a disease that can infect cats and people. It is especially dangerous for pregnant women. Learn about toxoplasmosis and how to protect yourself from this disease.

Should I Call the Vet? - Part III
Bad breath, dental anesthesia, cat urinary problems.

Spaying (Ovariohysterectomy)
learn about this common surgery, and why it is important for the health of your pet.

Suture Site Healing
A veterinary question from the Veterinary Medicine Forum. A viewer asks if her dog's postoperative healing is normal.

Why Do Vets Do That?
Answers to common questions about veterinary care in general.

Zoonotic Diseases
Diseases that are transmissible between animals and humans.

Canine Parvovirus (CPV) Transmission - Can my dogs spread parvo to another dog?
A viewer asks this question about Parvo: I recently traveled with my two dogs that are vaccinated. I stayed with a friend who had a ten-month old dog that was not vaccinated. After we were there for two days, her dog got sick and died from Parvo. Could my dogs carry the virus from stopovers at roadside rest areas and given it to her dog? This was a very sad situations and I need to know if it was because of my visit." Learn about parvovirus and transmission in this FAQ.

Ear Infections, Ear Mites and Aural Hematomas
Common questions about Ear Infections, Ear Mites and Aural Hematomas in dogs and cats.

Getting Rid Of Poison Ivy, Oak, and Sumac on Pets
Dogs and cats do not suffer the allergenic effects of poison ivy, sumac or oak like humans do, but they can transmit the oil of these plants to humans on their hair. This means that your pet can bring you poison ivy (and related) even though you haven't been in the woods. The oil responsible for the rashes and blisters that humans get is very hardy and long-lived. Here are some tips for getting rid of it on your pets.

Poison Ivy - My Pet's Encounter With Poison Ivy
A common question on this site is if pets can "get" poison ivy. Not in the sense that humans do, with a intensely itchy, blister-filled rash like humans, but dogs and cats can transmit poison ivy, oak and sumac. This happens because the allergenic (toxic) part of these plants is an oil called urushiol and it is easily spread by fur, clothing and other surfaces. Has your pet helped spread poison ivy/oak/sumac to human family members? Please share your story and any poison ivy tips you may have.

Poison Ivy, Poison Oak, Poison Sumac and Pets

Poison Ivy, Poison Oak, Poison Sumac are common plants throughout the US. Reactions in humans range from none to severe. The questions of if pets can get poison ivy or if they can spread poison ivy (and related plants) to their human family are common. Here are resources and tips about poison ivy, oak and sumac and keeping pets and people safe.

Frito Feet: Why do dog paws smell like Fritos, Corn Nuts or Popcorn?
Questions about pet odors are common. Often a bad smell indicates a problem or disease process, but not always. What should you do if you notice that your dog's feet have a odor, often described as smelling like corn chips or old popcorn? Is this something to worry about? Read this FAQ to find out more about "Frito Feet."

Do Dogs And Cats Get Poison Ivy?
Poison ivy, poison oak and poison sumac are found in various combinations in wooded areas throughout North America (except Alaska and Hawaii). All of these plants contain a resin oil that for some individuals is highly allergenic. This oil is absorbed rapidly through the skin, producing intensely itchy and blistered lesions in susceptible individuals. Do dogs and cats get poison ivy? Can they spread poison ivy to humans? Learn more about these plants and pets in this FAQ.

Senior Dementia in Dogs
Have you noticed odd behaviors in your senior dog that you can't explain? Do dogs get Alzheimer's? Here is a list of the most common signs seen with senior dementia in dogs. Related: Senior Dementia in Cats As with all behavior changes, please see your veterinarian first to rule out a medical problem first, as many diseases can have...

Why does my pet scoot?
Both dogs and cats have anal sacs that may become impacted or infected if not emptying properly. This causes itching, scooting and pain. Severe cases may abscess and rupture. Learn the signs of anal sac problems and how to keep your pet comfortable and scoot-free.

Senior Dementia in Cats
Do cats get Alzheimer's? Is it normal behavior for a senior cat, or is there a problem? Here is a list of the most common signs seen with senior dementia in cats. Related: Senior Dementia in Dogs As with all behavior changes, please see your veterinarian first to rule out a medical problem first, as many diseases can have the same...

Tell us about your veterinary or vet tech school
Questions about veterinary schools and veterinary technology programs are common on this site. Each school has different strengths and weaknesses. Schools change over time, too. I attended my veterinary class reunion and toured Oregon State College of Veterinary Medicine. We were impressed at the changes involved with converting from a large...See submissions

Quick Facts About Porcupines, Quills and Pets
Pocupines and skunks are primarily nocturnal animals that unleash nasty surprises on unsuspecting dogs and their humans. Skunk spray is mostly annoying, although may have health effects at close range. Porcupines, on the other hand, have a much more serious weapon: quills. Porcupine quills are commonly found on the muzzle, face, head and...

Tell us about your dog's experience with porcupine quills
Porcupines and dogs are never a good mix. Quills have one-way barbs and may work themselves inside the body, causing severe problems and even death in some cases. It is always best to call your veterinarian for cases like this; removed quickly under anesthesia reduces the chances of quills working in deeper. Please share your dog's story of meeting up with a porcupine and how things turned out.See submissions

Dog Toy Reviews
The variety and number of dog toys available now is amazing - something for every dog. Not all dog toys are created equal, though. Safety and appropriateness are the two top concerns, as any veterinarian will tell you, retrieving a toy stuck in the stomach or intestines happens, even with the "best" toys. Selecting toys appropriate for your dog's size and personality and providing supervised play time is important. What are your favorite dog toys, and why?See submissions

Firework Toxicity
Firework and thunder noise phobias and anxieties may cause dogs and cats to tremble, drool and pace. In more serious cases, animals have been known...

Dental Care Tips and Tools - Share your home dental care tips and tools for...
Dental Care Tips and Tools - Share your home dental care tips and tools for dog and cat dental health

Pet Dental Care Tips and Tools
It is always best to start with a visit to your veterinarian and a professional dental cleaning if needed. Your veterinarian can show you the best...

Stinky Pets - Tell us about your stinky pet
Bad odors in dogs and cats may indicate a health problem such as dental disease, anal sac abscess, infected ears, or a hot spot. In other cases, a bad odor may simply indicate that the pet needs a bath. Learn to smell the difference and visit your vet when needed.

Zinc Toxicosis in Dogs and Cats from Eating Pennies and Other Zinc-Containing...
Zinc Toxicosis in Dogs and Cats from Eating Pennies and Other Zinc-Containing Items

Senior Pets - Older dogs and cats have lots of love to share
Senior pets have a special place in my heart. While they may take extra time and extra care to accommodate for the changes seen in old age, they still give their all to their human family members. The stories of seniors up for adoption are usually heartbreaking - an owner dies or is too ill or elderly to care for the pet, the family moves,...See submissions

Adoption Resources - all about dog, cat and other pet adoptions
The struggling economy and rising costs mean more animals than ever are in need of homes. Learn where to find local adoption resources, online adoption options, and how you can help animals in need -- even if you can't adopt at this time. Read adoption success stories to know what to expect when you add a new pet to your home. This helps ensure...

Halloween Hazards and Pets - Keep Your Pet Safe
There are many pet hazards related to this October holiday -- some are well-known (i.e. the dangers of chocolate overindulgence), and some aren't. Learn what to be aware of to protect your pet and stay safe this year!

Halloween Costumes and Safety Concerns for Pets
The selection of Halloween costumes for pets gets bigger and better each year. There are definitely some cute and funny costumes, but I always wonder if they are safe - can any buttons or baubles be chewed off and swallowed? What about ribbons or stringy decorations? Cats are well known for suffering from "linear foreign bodies" - when the...

Pet Life Jackets
I have mentioned pet life jackets before on this site as they relate to overall safety in the summer and around water. This article examines pet life jackets more closely and will hopefully help pet owners decide if a life jacket is a good idea for their pet(s). I've decided that they are a great idea for my dog, Sophie.

Twilight Time: The Long Goodbye
The "how will I know it is time" question is a common one for vets and one of the most common questions asked on this site. Of course, there isn't one clear-cut answer for this question. The nature of the disease or condition, the general health of the pet, and the household/living situation all play a part in this process. As can be expected,...

Pet Loss & Grief
Today, with pets living longer, healthier lives and enjoying such an integral position in the human family, grief over losing a pet is a serious concern. Thankfully, fellow pet lovers, veterinary schools and counseling professionals now offer a wide variety of resources for those experiencing the pain of losing a dearly loved pet. This article...

Senior Pet Adoptions
I am particularly fond of senior pets and pet adoptions. Thanks to Petfinder, the popular pet adoption site, November is the time to celebrate both. Here are my top 5 reasons that senior pets deserve a "first look," and helpful resources for senior pet adoption and showing off our favorite senior pets.

Holiday Gift Ideas For Pets & Their People
Personal pet preferences and safety concerns should be considered first when selecting presents for both pets and people who love them. This list of gift ideas offers "safe" choices that should be suitable for all of the pets and pet lovers on your list.

What Is A Hot Spot?
Also known as "pyotraumatic dermatitis", these common pet skin lesions are usually caused (and made worse) by biting, licking, or scratching.

Ear Cropping
Ear cropping is banned in many countries but still allowed in the United States. Learn more about this elective, cosmetic surgery performed on some breeds of dogs.

Easter and Springtime Hazards for Dogs and Cats
Ah, spring. It is nice to have a little color after a long winter. Easter and springtime decorations (and edibles) liven the scenery, but also pose a potential hazard to pets. Who knew that plastic Easter grass could be dangerous? Spring is a great time to take an inventory of potential pet hazards. It's better than the alternative of spending...

Protect Your Pets From Getting Sunburned
People are realizing dangers of sun exposure. Now this sun care attention is turning to our pets. White animals and those that have a summer hair cut or with naturally thin (or nonexistent!) hair coats are particularly sensitive to the sun, and may suffer the same ills as humans: sunburn and skin cancers. This Quick Tip offers ideas and cautions...

Diabetes Mellitus in the Dog
Diabetes mellitus can affect dogs and causes an increase in the blood sugar level that usually needs to be managed with insulin. Learn more about the causes and symptoms of canine diabetes mellitus.

Diagnosing Canine and Feline Diabetes Mellitus
Diabetes mellitus is common in both dogs and cats. Learn about the different diagnostic tests that are used to diagnose canine and feline diabetes mellitus.

Pet Nutrition Questions Part 2
This is the second of a continuing series of Q & A on pet nutrition. Questions about dog and cat foods were submitted by viewers. In this interview, Pet Nutritionist Dr. Marcie Campion, Ph.D. answers questions about diet and medical conditions in pets.

Recognizing Arthritis in Dogs
Arthritis is common in dogs. Canine arthritis can be quite painful. Being able to recognize the symptoms of arthritis in your dog is important.

Candy and Food Gifts - Prevent Pet Pilfering
Most people are aware that chocolate is toxic to pets, and knowledgeable pet owners would never think of giving their dog an entire box of chocolates to enjoy (and likely become sick). This Quick Tip is a reminder for special occasions and holidays where gifts abound - think twice before leaving gifts and curious pets unattended.

Seizures and Epilepsy in Dogs and Cats
Seizures and epilepsy can occur in both dogs and cats. Learn how the terms seizure and epilepsy are defined and understand the difference between how the words seizures and epilepsy are used in the dog and cat.

Adverse reactions - Has your pet experienced an adverse reaction to a drug or...
Has your pet experienced an adverse reaction to a drug or topical medication/product? The first thing to do is call your vet as soon as possible. It is a good idea to write down any details you can remember - the time and method of administration, what signs were noted, and what time(s) those signs appeared. It is important to report these...

Camping With Pets
Summer is almost here, and for many people, that means dusting off the camping gear! The fresh air, recreational activities, camp food, campfire, and some well-deserved relaxation are all part of camping. Unfortunately, so are the insect bites, burned or soggy camp food, lumpy beds, and bad weather conditions. Learn how to prevent accidents and...

Pet Insurance Shopping Tips
Shopping for health insurance, whether for humans or pets, is confusing. So many options. So many exclusions. We can't predict the future -- what plan will best suit our needs and grow with us? Asking questions is the first step to ruling out plans that won't work and finding plans that will. Assistance with finding a health plan that offers the...

Ear Hematoma - Had An Ear Infection And Now The Ear Is Swollen
A VetMed Viewer asks: "My American Bulldog has a chronic ear fungus that he scratches at and it is infected and keeps filling up with blood. He’s been to the vet twice this week and now it’s filled up again, his poor ear is sticking straight out. He’s on antibiotics too, any home remedy til we can get back to our vet?"

Bad Breath and Drooling - Is it a bad tooth?
For a cat still active for his age but showing signs of drooling and sporting an unkempt hair coat, a thorough oral exam is necessary. While diseased gums and or teeth are always a possibility, other conditions must be ruled out. Learn more in this FAQ.

Pet Nutrition Q & A
Dr. Marcie Campion, Ph.D., veterinary nutritionist and Scientific Relations Manager at P&G Pet Care answers viewer questions about dog and cat nutrition in a series of interviews. Topics include supplements, general nutrition, medical conditions and diet, and label reading tips.

Family vacations: should your pet stay at home or travel with you?
I am noticing more "pet friendly" places to stay and visit lately, which supports the idea that more people are choosing to bring their pets on trips and vacations. Do you travel with pets, or are you more inclined to find a kennel or petsitter? This Quick Tip examines taking your pets on vacation and if it is a good choice for your particular...

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