Daily Paws

Pet news, tips, entertainment and opinions from VetLocator.com

Archive for the ‘Pet Emergency’ Category

Resolve to give your pet the best pet year ever!

Thursday, January 16th, 2014


Here are 10 New Year’s resolutions to help you do just that.

If you are like me you spent some time putting together your 2014 New Year’s Resolutions to start this new year right.  Hopefully you remembered to include resolutions for your pets in yours, but just in case you have not, we thought it was a perfect time to give you some suggestions for resolutions to make 2014 an excellent year for both of you.

So without further ado, here are VetLocator’s Daily Paws 2014 Pet New Year’s Resolutions:

  1. I resolve to tell my pet I love him/her at least once a day.
    You may already do this, but for many of us (me included), making the conscious effort to do so ensures I tell my pets every day that I love them.  I know they thrive with those words being said.
  2. I resolve to take my pet to the vet for a healthy pet check up at least once, but preferably twice, this year.
    Sometimes our pets seem so darn healthy we don’t think it is necessary to take them to the vet but it is a good practice to have the vet give them a healthy pet check up at least once a year the same way we should resolve to do the same for ourselves and our families.
  3. I resolve to reserve at least 10 minutes a day of distraction free time devoted solely to sharing with my pet.
    This is such an important resolution to keep and it makes such a difference to your pet.  Many pets are well fed, get check-ups regularly, but spend such little quality time with their owners that they are quite neurotic and troublesome as a result.  For many pets, they feel it is their job to look after their owners and one of the ways they do their jobs is by helping us relax.  So make this resolution and help your pets help you to live a fuller and richer life, and by doing so you will help them in exactly the same way.
  4. I resolve to give my pet treats on a regular basis, but to not overdo the treats.
    I have this same resolution for myself – ha ha.  There is a fine line between giving treats appropriately and overdoing it and we will leave that for you to work out, but it is important to treat your pets from time to time.  It leaves you both in a good mood.
  5. I resolve to do a full body inspection of my pet at least once a month.
    Do you like to get massages?  Most people do and so does your pet.  While you are giving your pet an over-all stroking and massage, do a physical check out of how their body is.  Are there tender areas that are new?  Any bumps?  Anything seem unusual?  If so, schedule an appointment to investigate it further.
  6. I promise to give my pet a good brushing at least once a week.
    Most pets love to get a good brushing or combing.  I say once a week is good, but even a few times a month works.  Some pets are sensitive at first but will soon grow to like the  experience and will look forward to it as a treat from you.
  7. I promise to take a photo of my pet doing average and/or cute things either alone or with me in the picture, monthly.
    Our pets don’t live as long as we do unfortunately, so taking regular pictures of their time with us is a good way to keep a journal of your lives together.  Make sure you regularly save the photos to a folder or print them so they are not lost if your camera or phone has a problem.
  8. I promise to have a pet first aid kit ready in the event there is an emergency.
    Most people have a human emergency first aid kit to handle unforeseen emergencies but don’t have one set up for their pets.  We have a good suggestion for one on our website, and if you don’t yet have one of these, you can use our suggestions as a place to start.
  9. I resolve to keep an ID tag on my pet in the event he/she is ever lost.
    Keep a collar and tag on your pets, even if they are microchipped.  These days it is a good idea to use your mobile number rather than your home phone as the number on the tag because most people have their phones with them at all times, so should your pet get found by someone, you’ll know about it faster.
  10. I resolve to prepare 2 pet emergency information cards, one to keep in the emergency kit and one to have available for easy access or to give to a sitter that includes quick access to vital information.  (vet number, 24/7 emergency #, your cell phone number, poison control #, medications, pet license #, someone else to call in an emergency if you are not available).

There you go, our 2014 pet resolutions.  Have you made any others?  We’d love to hear them!  Just leave them in the comment section below.

Jerky Treat Mystery: Nearly 600 Pets Dead; Still No Source, FDA Says

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013
courtesy the Mawaka family

Photo courtesy: the Mawaka Family.   Toby, a 6-year-old Boston terrier, died in 2012 after his owners say he was sickened by chicken jerky pet treats made in China.

Nearly 600 pets have died and more than 3,600 have been sickened in an ongoing, mysterious outbreak of illnesses tied to jerky treats made in China, federal animal health officials said Tuesday.

Most of the cases have been in dogs of all breeds, ages and sizes — although 10 cats have been sickened, too — after eating chicken, duck and sweet potato jerky treats. The pace of the reported illnesses appears to have slowed, but federal Food and Drug Administration officials are now seeking extra help from veterinarians and pet owners in solving the ongoing puzzle.

“To date, testing for contaminants in jerky treats has not revealed a cause for the illnesses,” Martine Hartogensis, a deputy director for the FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine, said in the new report. “Despite these warnings, we have continued to receive reports of illnesses in both cats and dogs.”

The new numbers are up from some 500 deaths and 3,200 illnesses tallied in January, but the rate of reports has fallen sharply since then, mostly because two of the largest sellers of pet jerky treats announced recalls tied to the presence of unapproved antibiotic residue detected in the products.

FDA officials don’t think that antibiotic residue is the big problem that has stumped the agency since 2007, when pet owners started reporting their animals were suffering gastrointestinal and kidney problems after eating the popular jerky treats.

Instead, it’s likely that the recall of Nestle Purina PetCare Co.’s Waggin Train and Canyon Creek Ranch treats, plus Del Monte Corp.’s Milo’s Kitchen Chicken Jerky and Chicken Grillers home-style dog treats simply resulted in fewer treats being available. Three other smaller retailers also recalled the treats because of the problem.

In fact, FDA officials remain as uncertain as ever about the source of the problem that has led to reports of illnesses and warnings about the possibility of Fanconi syndrome and other kidney problems in animals that ate jerky treats.

“We still are extensively testing treats for a number of things,” Hartogensis told NBC News. “We do seem to be getting some leads, but we still have a little bit of a ways to go.”

Kendal Harr, a veterinary clinical pathologist who has been tracking the problem, says that the specific compound responsible for the illnesses continues to elude experts.

“I think that what it tells us is that the intoxicant is something that we’re not used to dealing with as a toxin in North America,” she said.

Now, in an open letter to US veterinarians, FDA officials are asking the vets to track and send detailed information about any animals sickened by jerky treats, including results of blood and urine tests. In addition, the agency is asking vets to send urine samples from suspect pets for analysis.

“This testing will allow FDA to get a better idea of how many of the suspected cases involve Fanconi syndrome, whether or not the pets display symptoms of kidney or urinary disease,” the report said.

About 60 percent of reports cite gastrointestinal illness in the animals, and about 30 percent flag kidney or urinary troubles, the report said. About 135 cases of Fanconi syndrome, a specific kind of kidney disease, have been reported.

At the same time that they’re seeking help from vets, FDA officials are putting out a fact sheet for owners that can be posted at veterinary hospitals, pet supply stores and other sites.

The agency has repeatedly cautioned that the treats are not necessary for a balanced diet, but the warnings stop short of a recall, Hartogensis said. The agency is still validating tests to detect the same kind of antibiotic residue that New York officials found earlier this year.

“If we do find an adulterated product, we will recall them,” Hartogensis said. “In terms of doing a blanket recall, at this point we don’t have enough evidence to do a blanket recall within the authority that we have.”

Because there’s no formal recall, it’s not possible to list affected brands, although a previous FDA analysis indicated that three of the top-selling brands of jerky treats sold in the U.S. were mentioned in connection with pet illnesses.

That doesn’t sit well with pet owners like Robin Pierre of Pine Bush, N.Y., who contends that Waggin’ Train chicken jerky treats were responsible for the sudden death in 2011 of her previously healthy 2-year-old pug, Bella, who developed kidney failure. She has long called for FDA to crack down on treat makers — and manufacturers.

“I am disgusted that our government continues to protect corporate American and China,” she told NBC News. “They need to start protecting the American consumer so that this does not happen again. As soon as a product is in doubt, a warning label should be placed at the point of sale so that consumers can make an educated choice.”

If a pet does become ill after eating the treats, FDA is asking owners to provide detailed information — up to and including results of a necropsy to test an animal’s tissues after death.

In the meantime, officials are trying to reach pet owners who might still have treats on hand to make sure they know about the potential problems.

“Right now, the focus for us is to make the public aware that these cases are still coming in,” she said.

Pet owners can report problems with jerky treats at the FDA’s consumer safety portal.

Read more information on: NBC News

Pet Safety Infographic: Pet Fire Safety

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

Featured By: The ComplianceAndSafety Blog

Saving for The Pet’s Rainy Day

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

For we, a really ill pet is the worst nightmare. Our furry friends are real members of the family, with paws wrapped tightly regarding the heartstrings. Whenever Fido or fluffy experiences a life-threatening disease or accident, it is really devastating and not only to the minds. A pet emergency will furthermore devastate the pocketbook.

A latest post inside Consumer Reports explored the worth of pet wellness insurance. Many pet owners purchase pet insurance plans expecting to protect not merely about routine care, however, those unexpected emergencies too. Unfortunately, because Consumer Reports determined, pet insurance seldom pays out over it costs.

What does Consumer Reports suggest? “We believe many pet owners is greater off passing up pet insurance plus rather placing certain funds inside an emergency “kitten.”

If you’re worried regarding the havoc routine care (e.g. exams, plus vaccinations plus dental cleanings) will wreak about a budget, and the expense of unexpected pet health emergencies, open a pet savings account. Your emergency “kitty” is there whenever you ought to cover the ideal friend’s health bills.

Consider this: According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), the average amount a pet owner could anticipate investing about a canine or feline relative (for food, supplies plus healthcare care) is $ 700 to $ 875 per annum in truth, the American Pet Products Association (APPA) estimates which Americans might invest over $ 50 billion about their dogs inside 2011 alone. Of which amount, $ 14.11 billion is projected to be invested about veterinary care.

The very respected American Pet Products Association yearly pet owner’s study reports which usual veterinary services for dogs average $ 248 a year plus $ 407 for surgical visits. For pets, veterinary services average $ 219 per year for routine visits plus $ 425 for operative visits.

A savings account is the smartest method to guarantee which these yearly expenses are covered without devastating the budget. With really a tiny monthly deposit, the pet’s rainy-day savings might grow instantly. Deposit $ 25 monthly plus you really need to have one pet’s yearly routine veterinary visits covered. Deposit more monthly and you may be willing for the inevitable emergency.

An a lot more responsible pet parent must combine their savings program with a veterinary discount system. These plans supply discounts about services at participating veterinarians plus are made to conserve a pet family at smallest twice of what they cost. They usually negotiate discounts with pet-related stores plus service services – kind of like an online wholesale club. Because these programs are not pet insurance, they do not have exclusions plus no complicated claims types.

Choosing the right vet and forming a partnership for life – your pet’s life

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

We all have problems.  The economy, who to vote for in the upcoming election, whether it’s going to rain and should you take an umbrella with you when you go out.

Problems.  Yeah.  They’re a part of life and we all have them.

Most people who have pets also have some sort of pet problems.  For us its the cats we have.  They are finicky.  One of them was the runt of the litter and she arrived with some serious immune and digestive issues.  Whenever I look at her it is with anxious eyes.  Is she thinner?  What’s she doing as far as twitching and licking.  Those are the tell-tale signs of a systemic problem that may need my attention very soon.

But for all that, she’s wonderful. She’s loving.  She’s a mean hunter that keeps the pests and rodents away from her home.  She’s ours and we are very glad she and her brother are sharing our offices.

I’ve gotten to know her veterinarian very well and I adore him.

Finding him, however, was not an easy task.  You’d think that in the business we have it would be easy to find a vet.  We know hundreds, and in our local area we have dozens to choose from within a 5 minute drive of our front door.   I almost feel like the Hairclub for men man when I say “Not only do we own VetLocator, but we use it too (as a reminder – and for those of you not familiar – the Hairclub for men man said “not only am I the owner but I’m a customer too” as he dramatically shows his partially bald head.

In my case I interviewed 3 or 4 veterinarians, went to one, then to another and then to a third vet.  Each was OK but I did not feel what I wanted to feel.  I didn’t feel a partnership with the vet or the office or something.

So I kept looking.

And my looking paid off.

I found a wonderful veterinarian that treated our little girl and changed her condition and symptoms so they were under control.  Finally.  I found a veterinarian who is great and his office and staff are equally wonderful.  He’s a keeper and we’ve formed a good partnership on keeping Kewpie healthy.

Today our cats are mostly very healthy and it is rare I need to contact our veterinarian.  Besides regular checkups I can control things pretty well from home.

But if I ever need something, have a question or an emergency I know my partner is there and the problems I am facing at the moment will be addressed and we’ll handle it together.

As I said, we all have problems.  Finding the right vet and forming a pet health partnership for your pets gives you one less problem to try and solve.

And that makes things just a little, or a lot, better.

Isn’t that a nice thing?

If you are looking for a pet health partner, do what I did.  Use our directory to locate the nearest ones to where you are, then interview them and the staff and office too, to find the one that is the best fit for you and your pets.  It is so worth the effort.

And if you need help, you can always contact our customer care.  We’re here for you too.


Daily Paws

Pet CPR – When To Use It To Save Your Pet’s Life

Friday, March 30th, 2012

Pet CPR & First Aid Taken from Rescue Critters, www.rescuecritters.com, makers of animal training mannequins.

The following is a simple breakdown of dog & cat CPR. It’s written for the average pet owner and in plain language. It uses the common accepted approach to pet cardiopulmonary resuscitation according to excepted standards of Pet First Aid courses throughout the United States. Pet First Aid is not intended to take the place of professional veterinary care. It is recommended that you take a Pet First Aid course from a certified instructor.

ABC’s (Airway, Breathing, Circulation)

Airway: Probably one of the most important things you can do after SAFETY is to make sure your dog or cat is breathing. To do this, you want to gently tap your dog or cat and call out their name to see if they move. Then (being careful not to get bitten or scratched) lean down close and LOOK, LISTEN AND FEEL for breathing.

  • Look: at the chest of the animal to see if it’s moving.
  • Listen: to see if you can hear them breathing.
  • Feel: on your cheek or back of your hand for a breath.

Breathing: If your dog or cat is not breathing, pull their tongue just a little bit, close the mouth and tilt their head just a little to open their Airway. Give them 4 -5 breaths from your (guess what?) mouth to their nose! This is Mouth-to-Snout resuscitation. You’ll want to give them just enough air to make the chest rise. Big dogs need more – little dogs or cats much less. Remember not to give too much air! You don’t want to hurt them.

Circulation: This means you’re checking to see if their heart is working OK. To do that you must check for a heart beat which is called a pulse. There are pulse points located in various areas on your dog or cat. For a dog the best place to find the pulse is on the inside of the rear leg, towards the top of the leg. This is called the Femoral Pulse. For a cat the best place to find the pulse is on the outside of the left front leg, just behind the shoulder. This is called an Apical Pulse.

Rescue Breathing

Rescue Breathing is when you have to breath for your dog or cat because they are not breathing on their own. You do this when your dog or cat has a pulse but is not breathing.

  • Step 1: First do your ABC’s, don’t forget to LOOK, LISTEN, and FEEL for breathing.
  • Step 2: If not breathing, give 4-5 breaths using Mouth-to-Snout resuscitation.
  • Step 3: Check for pulse on the Femoral Artery for dogs or check the Apical Pulse for cats or really small dogs.
  • Step 4: If there is a pulse, but no breathing start Mouth-to-Snout resuscitation giving 1 breath every 3 seconds. For cats or really small dogs, give 1 breath every 2 seconds.

CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation)

CPR: First do your ABC’s, don’t forget to LOOK, LISTEN, and FEEL for breathing. CPR can only be performed if your dog or cat is not breathing and has no pulse. Follow Steps 1,2,3 same as in Rescue Breathing. If there is no Pulse, start CPR

Dog = Place the dog on the ground or other hard surface with its right side down. Take it’s left front leg and bend at the elbow, rotating at the shoulder. The point where the elbow of the dog touches the body is where you place your hands for compressions. Put one hand on top of the other and clasp your fingers together. Lock your elbows and start performing compressions. Push approximately 2-3 inches deep. Give compressions first then a breath. After 1 minute check for a pulse. repeat if there’s no response.

  • Giant Dogs = Give 1 breath every 10 compressions.
  • Medium to large dogs = Give 1 breath every 5 compressions.
  • Small Dogs = Give 1 breath every 5 compressions.

Cats or really small dogs = Place the animal flat on the ground. Then put your hands on either side of the animal’s chest, right behind the shoulder blades with your palms over the heart (sandwiching the animal’s chest between both hands). Compress approximately ½ – 1 inch deep. After 1 minute, check for a pulse again.

  • Cats or really small dogs = Give 1 breath every 3 compressions.