Friday, 26 June 2015

It’s Flea Season: What to Do to Protect Your Pets

Fleas are pests that can be very bothersome to your pets, and they can even cause problems for your household’s human residents. Fortunately, there are some simple but effective things you can do to help your pets stay flea free.

Keeping your pet’s bedding clean is a great proactive step to take. Regularly vacuum it, along with any other areas where your pet spends a lot of time. Be sure to empty the vacuum bag or dirt container afterwards though, because flea eggs can continue to thrive despite being vacuumed up.

It’s also wise to keep your exterior property well groomed, especially if your pet goes outside frequently. Fleas like to stay in areas of high humidity that are out of direct sunlight. With that in mind, you may need to treat lawn structures like benches and tables with solutions that repel fleas.

Keep all shrubs, trees and grassy areas well trimmed. Also, go a step further and make sure you don’t have any items on your property that could attract creatures like rodents. They can carry fleas, and if you have things like open garbage containers that could be inviting for those animals, the flea population in your yard may go up as well.

Your veterinarian will also have several suggestions for ways to prevent your pets from getting infested with fleas. It’s still easy to find flea collars at your local pet or grocery store, but if you’re looking for a more updated option that’s probably more effective, ask your veterinarian about topical treatments. They are usually applied at a pet’s hairline in a specific place such as the base of the neck. Just a few drops that are correctly applied to the coat can keep a pet free of fleas for weeks.

Thursday, 25 June 2015

What to Feed Your Guinea Pig for Optimal Health

Just like you, your guinea pig possesses specific nutritional requirements and should be fed with care. Most importantly, it is important to make sure that your guinea pig is getting the nutrients it needs from a varied balanced diet. Below are some of the most important aspects of a guinea pig’s safe diet.


Hay is an essential part of your guinea pigs digestive health, and they should have access to an unlimited amount. However, not all hay is created equal, and you should carefully select what you feed them. Most importantly, you should be purchasing green hay and not yellow. Yellow is likely straw, which could harm your pig. Timothy is the most beneficial type of hay and can be eaten in unlimited quantities. You may also select from a range of other hays for variety, but you need to purchase them in moderation.

Fresh Veggies

It is also important to feed your guinea pig fresh vegetables on a daily basis. While it is important to provide a variety of vegetables, green leafy veggies like lettuce, spinach and kale are the most beneficial. You can also occasionally feed your pet forages such as broccoli and parsley. Most importantly, you must feed your pig fresh vegetables and not wilted or rotting items.

Pig Pellets

Finally, pig pellets are an important part of your guinea pigs diet. However, you must give them in moderation as they are high in energy, and large quantities could result in an overweight or obese guinea pig. It is important to look for pellets high in vitamin C, as this is an important part of a guinea pig’s diet.

These are the 3 safest types of food for guinea pigs. While you can add variety with other foods, it is important to do so in moderation to prevent health problems. For information on an emergency vet in San Jose, click here.

High Cost of Cat's Weird Meals

Rocks, balls and even rugs have ended up inside dogs, cats and other pets, sometimes with more

When is it Time to Get Your Pet's Nails Trimmed?


Just like human fingernails, dog nails and cat claws grow constantly. Nails wear down naturally through play and walking, so there’s not always a need to trim them. Sometimes though, you’ll need to intervene.

Factors That Can Impact Nail and Claw Length

There are several things that can play a role in how long nails and claws get, including:

  • Physical activity level
  • Breed
  • The pet’s age

Determining the Appropriate Time for a Trim

When a dog’s nails are too long, they’ll make a clicking noise when the canine walks on hard surfaces. Also, nails that are the proper length should not touch the ground when the pet is standing, nor protrude over the toe pads.

Unlike the noise you might hear when a dog with overgrown nails walks on hard floors, there’s not usually a similar audible cue with cats. Instead, watch your cat carefully to see if the claws are repeatedly getting snagged on soft surfaces like carpet, or even your clothes. If your can feel your cat’s claws when it is sitting on your lap, that’s another sign it might be time for a trim.

Why Trimming is Important

A dog with overgrown claws may be prone to infections that can cause pain and other complications. Similarly, a cat may find that the claws turn back on themselves and puncture the paw pads. To learn more about a veterinary clinic in San Jose, visit this website.

DIY Eat: Juice Pulp Dog Treats

If you’ve jumped on the juicing bandwagon, you’re enjoying amazing, fresh, homemade juices, but likely wondering: isn’t there more

Protecting Your Cat With Important Vaccinations

When you bring your new adorable kitten home, he or she instantly becomes a part of your family, and you want your cat to live a long healthy life. Vaccinations are an important part of supporting your cat’s longevity. Overall, veterinarians agree that there is a set of core vaccinations that are important to all cats, and it is important that you complete them when recommended.

Panleukopenia Vaccine

Panleukopenia or feline distemper is highly contagious among cats and kittens as well as raccoons and minks. It can result in vomiting, fever and other symptoms. The disease is most harmful to young kittens and can result in serious life threatening symptoms. You should have your kitten vaccinated within their first year of life.


Rhinotracheitisand Calicivirus are respiratory diseases that are easily spread throughout the feline community. Once infected, your cat will be a lifetime carrier and will demonstrate symptoms intermittently during their life. The disease can eventually become fatal if respiratory issues increase. For example, Calcivirus can result in pneumonia. This vaccination should also be given within the first year of life.

Cat Mood by Tail


Tell the mood of your cat by observing how its tail is moving. For example, its tail will look similar when it is aggressive or submissive, but will be slightly different at a closer look.

Keep Your Chinchilla Health and Happy With Regular Baths

Chinchillas require very specific and unique care that differs from other household pets. In particular, you cannot give your chinchilla a water bath like other pets because their heavy coats are impossible to air dry and can produce fungus and fur erosion. Below is some important information on how to bathe your pet.

Purchasing Dust

In the wild, volcanic rocks are eroded into dust, which chinchillas collect in their fur. The dust then absorbs dirt, oils and other particles, leaving the fur clean. Because the dust found in the wild is unique, it is important that you purchase the appropriate dust from a respected retailer. The dust should be collected naturally and contain no added chemicals that could harm your pet.

Selecting a Container

When looking for a container for your chinchilla’s bath, you can use a non-tipping bowl or deep dish. However, a fish bowl or a specifically designed bathing house may be more adequate. Your chinchilla is likely going to bathe excitedly, and you want to prevent a larger mess than necessary. Therefore, a more enclosed container will keep your home cleaner.

Dogs Can Read That Smile On Your Face

When you and I look at a photograph of a human face, we can easily recognize the emotional state of the person pictured by their more

How Much Exercise Should Your Dog Be Getting?

Adequate exercise is essential for your dog to enjoy good health, but it also has an impact on daily behavioral patterns. If a dog isn’t exercised enough, he or she may dig holes, destroy items or bark excessively to cope with excessive energy and boredom.

Characteristics That Can Determine a Necessary Amount of Exercise

There are many things that can play a role in how much exercise your dog needs to be healthy and happy, such as:

  • Age
  • Breed
  • Overall health

General Rules of Thumb

Usually, it’s not sufficient to take a lap or two around the block and call it a day. Instead, your pet probably needs at least 30-60 minutes of exercise each day. Active breeds, such as Portuguese Water Dogs, Shetland Sheepdogs and Dalmatians, need at least 30 minutes of hard aerobic exercise, preferably on a daily basis.

Abyssinian Guinea Pig on a Lettuce Leaf


A tiny Abyssinian guinea pig is sitting on a lettuce leaf. This breed of guinea pigs has its own recommended care guide, breeds and interesting fur colors.

Monday, 15 June 2015

A Dog Will Improve Your Quality of Life

Everyone knows that a dog is man’s best friend, but is a dog the right pet for you and your family? Considering how many millions of animals end up in animal shelters every year, it’s important to research the responsibilities of ownership and what you can expect when you welcome on into your home. Here are some great reasons why you might want to own one of these great pets.

Dogs are loyal and protective. Since they are naturally social animals, their emotional bond to you is a strong and lifelong one. You will always be the most important thing in your dog’s life. This is why these animals provide such great companionship; you are never alone, from a fishing trip to a quiet evening at home.

Dogs encourage people to interact with each other, too. They can enhance your social life by making it easier for others to approach and talk to you. Many clubs and public areas like parks are specifically for people who own pooches to meet and socialize.

Since these animals need to get outside and walk, you will also increase your activity level and get more exercise. Not only can this improve your health and agility, but you will have more fun in your life while doing it because they are comical and love to play when they are outside. Along with that, they help you to relax and reduce stress. They comfort you when you are upset, and encourage leisure enjoyment of life.  Studies have shown that dog owners had lower blood pressure and fewer heart attacks. This is probably a combination of extra exercise and stress reduction. They are known to enhance self-esteem, confidence, and mental acuity. Having a companion around that never judges you, allows you to lead, and keeps you motivated can be a major mental boost.

Friday, 12 June 2015

Protect Your Dogs From Ticks

With tick season upon us, we spoke to Bruce Kornreich, Associate Director for Education and Outreach at the Cornell Feline Health Center, to learn the fine points of tick more

What is Tick-Borne Illness?


Each year, thousands of dogs are infected with a variety of preventable illnesses and parasites because of contact with ticks. Many of these tick-borne illnesses range are relatively minor health issues that can be handled by most vets with a simple treatment regimen. There are some that are more serious, though, as well as a variety of illnesses that are usually no big deal, but that can become more serious if they are complicated by other health issues.

Types of Illnesses

The following are a sampling of the more common types of illness that can be contracted by dogs through tick infestation.

  • Lyme disease
  • Canine Ehrlichiosis
  • Anaplasmosis
  • Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

These tick-borne illnesses are very different from each other, but they have some overlapping symptoms that can help you to recognize when to seek veterinary attention. Most notably, loss of appetite and either swelling or stiffness at the joints are both common symptoms in a variety of tick-related conditions.

Human Transmission

None of these conditions are directly contagious from dogs to humans, but ticks can transfer themselves from the pet to the owner, and some tick-borne illnesses like Lyme disease can affect humans who are bitten. The regular use of an effective tick prevention medication can keep your dog safe from infestation, making it that much easier to ensure your own safety while out and about.

Ticks are becoming more prevalent in many areas of the United States, making regular prevention important in all climates. To learn more about tick prevention and canine health, check out this vet website.

Why good nutrition matters

W. Jean Dodds, DVM, founder of Hemopet, the first nonprofit national blood bank program for animals, has built much of her considerable reputation on her work in the more

Thursday, 11 June 2015

How to Prevent Parvo

Parvo is one of the most contagious and deadly diseases that your dog can come into contact with. While the sickness only affects canines, the virus can be transmitted environmentally, as well as by contact with humans and other animals that have been exposed to it. The most common route of exposure is contact with infected canine feces.

The only totally foolproof way to prevent parvo is to get your dog vaccinated, and to keep up with any necessary boosters on time. No other method is as effective at preventing infection. At the same time, though, puppies have to reach a certain age to be eligible for some vaccinations, so it is important to know how to reduce exposure risks until your dog is old enough to be properly vaccinated.

Reducing Risk

Follow these steps to help keep your pup parvo-free until he or she can be vaccinated.

  • Limit unvaccinated canines’ exposure to other dogs, especially if you do not know their vaccination status. This includes dog-heavy environments like pet stores.
  • When visiting the vet, remember to keep your puppy in your arms so that you can remain in control of how much environmental exposure you have. Wrapping the pup in a blanket can help minimize risk.
  • If you regularly come into contact with other dogs, wash and change your clothes before handling an unvaccinated puppy.

Paris Hilton's Beloved Dog Tinkerbell Dies at 14

Tinkerbell is well known as being Hilton's best canine friend. Hilton and Tinkerbell was even one of our early cover girls on Modern Dog more

Cute Little Dog Ready for Close-up

Absolutely adorable little dog stares up at the camera like he’s just waiting for his forever home. Or maybe he’s begging forgiveness for being a naughty puppy?

Assessing Canine Temperament

Your dog’s temperament is a complex statement about its personality that combines breed heredity and environment, meaning that it is based on both the kind of dog you have and the kind of environment it has been exposed to. This includes prior training from humans, interactions with other animals, and much more. Assessing a dog’s temperament is useful in a variety of ways, because it can not only help with adoption, it can also help to determine if a canine is fit for work in search-and-rescue, law enforcement, and a variety of other roles.

Pertinent Information

Assessment is a combination of research and evaluation, and to be accurate it should take into account the following factors:

  • Breed information
  • Past history of aggression (or not)
  • Age
  • Sex
  • Pregnancy status
  • Health and well-being

All of these factors can change canine temperament, especially the last two.


The actual assessment exercise should be done in an environment that is clear of unpredictable distractions. This means that while you do want a couple of observers for safety purposes, you also want to avoid crowds or other heavily active areas, like busy streets. The exercises will involve a variety of tasks and your dog’s reaction to them, and they are most accurate when performed by someone with experience handling animals but without experience with your particular dog. This allows for a better representation of the dog’s general demeanor.

While assessment is used often for adoption purposes, it has a variety of other applications, including being useful as a planning tool if you need to travel with an animal. To learn more about temperament assessment, consult a veterinary clinic in San Jose.