What should I do if I think my dog has heat stroke?

If your dog has been in the heat and is lethargic or in a stupor, check the color of the gums. If  your pet's gums are dark (brick) red he/she may have heat stroke. You need to cool your pet by placing them in tepid (NOT COLD) water and place a fan near them. Take your pet's rectal temperature and call the hospital. The normal temperature for a cat or dog should not be greater than 103 degrees Fahrenheit. Pets with temperatures greater than 109 may not recover. Remember to start cooling your pet with tepid water and a fan before transporting to the closest veterinary hospital.

Pet Health FAQsMy Dog has been hit by a car! What do I do?

Every animal that has been hit by a car should be seen at an animal hospital immediately. Even pets that seem OK could have internal damage that could lead to death if left untreated. Every pet should receive shock therapy, observation and radiographs of the chest and abdomen. Don't wait! A pet that could be saved may die if you take the "lets wait and see" approach.

What do I do if My Pet has Diarrhea?

After withholding food and giving water only for 12 hours, start the bland diet below. Call the animal hospital if the stomach upset continues.

  • 2 Parts boiled white rice
  • 1 Part boiled skinless (boneless) chicken OR 1 Part boiled lean hamburger
  • Leave in separate containers and mix only when serving
  • Food can be warmed slightly prior to feeding
  • Give 4-5 small meals a day.
  • Amount should equal the animal's normal daily quantity of food

Continue diet 3-4 days or until stool appears normal, then slowly change back to regular diet, mixing 1/4 regular diet with 3/4 bland diet 2-3 days, then 1/2 regular diet with 1/2 bland diet for 2-3 days. Then 3/4 regular diet with 1/4 bland diet for 2-3 days. Continue to gradually reduce bland diet until back to regular diet.

Kaopectate: Plain Flavor

  • 1 tsp per 10 lbs
  • Up to 4 times a day after diarrhea episode
  • Do not give if giving Proviable Paste

What should I do when my dog gets sprayed by a skunk?

  1. Put on rubber gloves and old clothes and examine your dog for bites/scratches. Check their eyes for redness or discharge. If any injuries are found, contact your veterinarian before proceeding.
  2. Set up for bathing your dog, the sooner that you begin the easier it will be to remove the smell.
  3. Use a towel to wipe off dog/oils first *DO NOT wet/bathe your dog prior*
  4. Apply a small strip of eye lubricant (such as Puralube) to your dog's eyes to help protect them in case any solution splashes in.
  5. In an open plastic container mix:
    • 1 quart of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide (fresh bottle)
    • ΒΌ cup of Baking Soda
    • 1-2 teaspoons of Liquid Soap (Softsoap and Ivory are recommended)
    (To increase, some warm tap water may be added to enable complete coverage)
    Mix well and use immediately, as the solution will lose potency over time. Do not keep in a closed container as the container can explode and cause injury.
  6. Apply generously to affected areas. Massage solution deep into coat. Avoid getting the solution in the dogs eyes, ears, or mouth.
  7. Let solution sit on dogs coat for 5-10 minutes or until the odor is gone.
  8. Rinse dog with lukewarm water then wash with shampoo
  9. Repeat steps 3-7 as necessary
  10. Dry your dog well and give them a treat!

Tips:

  • If your dog has been sprayed in the face, you should rinse out the eyes with an eye irrigation solution (available over the counter at any drug store). Be very careful not to get any of the peroxide solution in the dogs eyes as it stings and can damage the eyes. If necessary, you can clean the hair around the eyes very carefully using a toothbrush. If the eyes have redness/discharge you should bring your dog to the veterinarian.
  • NEVER place the solution in a closed container or spray bottle, as the pressure will build up and the container could burst. This could cause serious injury to you and your dog.
  • DO NOT use higher concentrations of hydrogen peroxide or substitute baking soda with "similar" products. The altered chemical reaction could cause severe injury to you and your dog.
  • Be certain you use fresh hydrogen peroxide, as it becomes less concentrated over time. If you are unsure how old your hydrogen peroxide is (or if it is expired) get fresh bottles just in case.
  • The solution can be used to remove skunk odor from clothing and other fabrics. However, it can have a mild bleaching effect on some materials. In addition, your dog's coat may become slightly lighter as a result of the solution. If this happens, it should resolve over time.
  • To help avoid future meetings between skunks and your dog, try to prevent skunks from becoming attracted to your property. Do not leave food outside, including bird seed and fallen fruit from trees. Make sure garbage cans are well-secured. In addition, keep your dog within eye shot and keep her from running into wooded areas unattended.

What should I do if my pet is stung by a bee?

If your dog is stung by a bee, give Benadryl (diphenhydramine). Bee stings can cause a local or more regional swelling. Diphenhydramine, generic Benadryl, is an over the counter medication. Give 1 mg/pound every 4 to 6 hours. Big dogs should receive the appropriate number of 25 mg capsules. For example, a 75 pound dog can take three, 25 mg capsules every 4 to 6 hours. A little dog should take children's Benadryl liquid 12.5 mg/tsp. A 12 pound dog should receive 1 teaspoon every 4-6 hours. While this medication may cause drowsiness, be sure to call the hospital if you think there is any problem with breathing or systemic illness. The bee sting should resolve in 12-24 hours.

What should I do if my dog ate chocolate?

The toxins in chocolate are theobromine and caffeine. Their effects are dose dependent. Pure cocoa  and dark chocolate have much more of these toxins than milk chocolate, which is mostly sugar and milk. If your pet has eaten dark chocolate, baker's chocolate or pure baking cocoa you may have a toxic problem. If  it has been less than 20 minutes from the time the pet has eaten the chocolate, then make your pet vomit. You may use hydrogen peroxide. Give hydrogen peroxide by mouth until your pet starts to vomit. See chart below for hydrogen peroxide doses. Try to note the amount of material brought up. After the vomiting, do not feed and give water only for 12 hours then start a bland diet the next day. If your pet has consumed a significant amount of chocolate and it has been greater than 20 minutes, call the hospital for instructions and possible admittance for supportive care.

Use a children's dosing syringe or chicken baster to give the hydrogen peroxide. Give the dose once, wait 10 minutes, then repeat if the dog has not vomitted yet. Call the hospital if no vomit occurs after 2 doses of hydrogen peroxide.

Dogs only:

  • 2-10 lbs: 1 tbsp by mouth
  • 10-25 lbs: 2-4 tbsp by mouth
  • 25-50 lbs: 3-5 tbsp by mouth
  • 50-100 lbs: 1/2 cup-3/4 cup by mouth
  • > 100 lbs: 1 cup by mouth

What should I do if I trim my pet's nails too short?

If you trim your pet's nail too short and it bleeds, don't panic. This happens to everyone! Use corn starch, flour or a man's styptic pencil to stop the bleeding. If you are away from home, i.e., camping, walk your dog around in the mud and let it dry. When the bleeding has stopped give your pet a treat and big hug and try it again another day.

Many different products are available at pet stores to stop nail bleeding. You may want to keep one on hand.

What is the SNAP 4DX test

The Snap 4DX is a blood test that checks for Heartworm disease and three tick-borne diseases - Anaplasmosis, Lyme and Ehrlichia in dogs. Heartworm is a disease that is transmitted by mosquitoes.  Lyme disease is a bacterial infection transmitted by the deer tick. Anaplasmosis and Ehrlichia are also diseases that are transmitted by the tick. After a negative Snap4DX blood test, you can vaccinate your dog for Lyme disease annually. As pet owners, you always want to apply a topical flea and tick prevention product monthly all year round.

What is feline leukemia? How can my cat get it?

Feline Leukemia is a major infectious disease of cats. The virus is spread from cat to cat through saliva, the litter box, from grooming, some flea bites, a bite wound or from an infected mother to her kittens. A blood test will show if your cat has Feline Leukemia (FeLV). There are vaccines for feline leukemia that are available after a negative blood test.

What is Heartworm disease? How can my pet get it and how can it be prevented?

Heartworm disease may not be apparent in all dogs. Dogs should be tested annually for heartworm if not on year round prevention. Heartworm is transmitted through a mosquito bite and travels through the connective tissues to the heart. Heartworm prevention is highly recommended for all dogs (after a negative blood test); it should be given every 30 days all year round. Heartworm disease can be very costly to treat and if left untreated can lead to severe heart/lung/kidney disease, even death. If your dog has missed doses of heartworm prevention, please contact your veterinarian.

What is Leptospirosis (Lepto)?

Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease which means it can be passed from animals to people. Lepto is a deadly bacterial disease spread by wildlife and domestic animals. Lepto bacteria are shed through urine. To avoid your pet getting leptospirosis, avoid exposure to still or slow moving water and vaccinate your pet annually. Lepto can be passed from pet to owner, so owners need to wear gloves and masks when cleaning pet crates and handling bodily fluids/waste. It is recommended that all dogs be vaccinated yearly because of the zoonotic potential of the disease.

When should my new puppy or kitten be seen?

Puppies and kittens should be seen by their veterinarian at 8, 12 and 16 weeks of age. New animals should be isolated from other animals in the household until you and your veterinarian are sure they are free from contagious disease that could harm your other pets.

Can I get a disease from my pet?

Yes, you can get parasites, intestinal diseases, eye infections, and rabies from domestic animals, along with lots of other diseases. Dogs can carry the resistant staph organism - MERSA - on their fur/skin. Always consult with your doctor and pediatrician when either one or both of you are sick. Use good hygiene when cleaning up any animal mess.

One interesting source of information on the topic is the Worms & Germs Blog.

How often should my pet see a veterinarian?

All companion animals (cats, dogs, ferrets) should see their veterinarian for a physical exam, fecal exam, and appropriate blood testing and vaccinations annually. The kinds of vaccinations the pet gets varies depending on their management, age, and disease history. The recommended blood tests vary by their species, by management and age as well.

What vitamins and food additives can I give my pets?

There are lots of vitamins and additives you can buy at the pet store, human grocery store or human health food stores for pets - glucosamine is probably one of the most common ones. Always check the quality because vitamins and food additives are not regulated. Please make sure to pick a quality product. You can check this out on websites like ConsumerLab.com.

What over-the-counter medications can I give my pet?

All over-the-counter medications can be toxic to pets. Never give an over-the-counter medication without consulting your veterinarian or veterinary staff member. Doses vary by weight, age and species. We often recommend over-the-counter cough suppressants, antihistamines and stomach protectants. Non-steroidal anti-inflamatory (NSAIDS) medications like aspirin, Tylenol, ibuprofen, and Advil can kill pets. Never give Tylenol to a cat.  Never give ibuprofen or Advil to a dog. Contact your veterinarian for proper dosing of aspirin for cats and dogs before giving any medication you have at home. Giving the incorrect dose or frequency could put your pet's life at risk.