FLEAS, TICKS & SKEETERS… OH MY!!!!

With the warmer temps come all the insect critters. We’re fully stocked with shampoos, sprays, diatomaceous earth, essential oils, herbal collars and monthly spot-ons that are safe for your dog and for your family, and made in the USA! From noted holistic vet, Dr. Peter Dobias DVM, here are “Eight Steps To Choosing A Safe Flea Product For Your Dog” (for the full blog article, please visit peterdobias.com for this and other great information)

  1. Choose a topical product over oral treatment
  2. Choose a residual wash or and spray product used together over a highly concentrated spot treatment that absorbs and stays in the body for a month
  3. Choose a natural product over chemical ones
  4. Read reviews of other dog lovers before you purchase a new product
  5. Pick a product that is not preserved with artificial chemicals
  6. Go with brands not manufactured in China to avoid poor quality or tainted ingredients
  7. Visit the Environmental Protection Agency’s website to see if there are any reports of fatalities related to the product. If there are reported fatalities, do not risk your dog’s life by using such product.
  8. Go for a product that is guaranteed to work so you do not waste your money and can help your dog promptly.             (and we’ll add 9.) If the product says “use gloves to apply” you can bet you won’t want it around your children or on your pet. So, come see us for better choices that really work!
Animal connection dog cat

Natural (Holistic) Solutions for Your Dog or Cat’s Anxiety

Anxiety affects pets as much as people. Traditional veterinarians might prescribe smaller dosages of the same anti-anxiety medications – such as Valium and Paxil – used for humans to treat pets. These drugs often have powerful side effects. Unless your pet is completely and dangerously out of control, natural solutions for anxiety are safer and as effective.

Determine the Cause

Natural solutions for your pet’s anxiety aren’t one-size-fits-all. It’s crucial to narrow down exactly what stresses your pet. Sometimes the answer is obvious, such as Fourth of July fireworks. If you’re not sure about the trigger, observe your pet carefully. Have there been any changes in the household recently? Is the pet experiencing a new routine? Inappropriate elimination in cats – a euphemism for going outside the box –often results from anxiety. Have your pet examined by your holistic veterinarian to determine whether your pet’s anxiety derives from a health or psychological issue. If it’s the latter, explore natural therapies for treatment.

Essential Oils

If you have a dog, keep lavender essential oil on hand.  This aromatic oil helps calm agitated canines – and it smells good. Lavender oil boasts soothing properties, but like all essential oils, it is quite powerful. That’s why it’s important to dilute essential oils with carrier oils, such as sesame or sweet almond for use with cats. However, dogs need the oil to be applied in a “neat” fashion and therefore the oils do not need dilution. One rule of thumb – mix 10 drops of essential oil into .5 ounce carrier oil.

Let your dog sniff the oil from the vial, or place a few drops on a bandanna and tie it around his neck. Try putting a drop or two in your hand and then petting your dog down the length of his body, or apply a drop around the ears. Another option: Use a diffuser and allow lavender oil to permeate the room. Lavender is one of the few essential oils safe to use on cats – very sparingly. Never place lavender directly on the cat, but a drop or two on the bedding in the cat carrier can ease feline travel nerves.

Other essential oils with soothing properties for dogs include:

  • Valerian – aids in calming noise anxiety
  • Vetiver- subdues nervous dogs
  • Ylang ylang – helpful for separation anxiety.

Purchase only high quality, therapeutic-grade essential oils for your pet’s therapy. View our line of Young Living Oils

Flower Essences

Flower essences are similar to essential oils in that they derive from plant-based materials. While many essential oils have medicinal properties, flowers essences heal only on the emotional level. Perhaps the best-known flower essence is Rescue Remedy, a distillation of five flowers – cherry plum, clematis, impatiens, Rock rose and Star of Bethlehem -essences designed to restore  calm in stressful situations. Available in a vial or as a spray, it’s another must-have for pet owners. Unlike essential oils, flower essences are safe for felines.

Certain flower essences are created for very specific issues. For example, gentian restores confidence, while larch boosts the esteem of scared animals. They sound like the same thing, but there is a subtle difference. Work with your holistic veterinarian to find the right flower essence for your pet’s problem.

Compression Shirts

If thunder or similar loud noises terrifies your dog, he or she doesn’t necessarily need anti-anxiety medication. What may help is a compression shirt, a garment using gentle pressure to make the dog feel secure, much like infant swaddling. While compression shirts won’t help all dogs with noise anxiety, many owners report good results. That’s especially true when essential oils, flower essences and other complementary therapies are also used.

Professional Help

If your dog suffers from severe separation anxiety, high-stress levels, or other behavioral concerns you’ve probably tried all the standard methods to resolve the issue. If nothing has worked, contact Pattie, Animal Connection’s owner, and animal telepathy, expert.

Learn more about our Behavior Consulting services here.

 

 

 

References Noted:

http://thebark.com/content/essential-oils-and-dogs

http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/essential-oils-for-scared-dogs/

http://animalwellnessmagazine.com/flower-essences-for-anxious-dogs/

https://www.caninejournal.com/thunder-jacket-for-dogs/

“PET FOOLED” MOVIE – Sunday, Feb.26 at 2 pm

HAVE YOU HEARD ABOUT THE DOCUMENTARY, “PET FOOLED?” It’s an in-depth exposé of the inner workings of the commercial pet food industry, the majority of which is owned by only a few multi-conglomerate companies. With the help of veterinarians Dr. Barbara Royal and Dr. Karen Becker, filmmaker Kohl Harrington takes viewers on an entertaining and eye-opening journey exploring all facets of a secretive industry, which has operated largely unchallenged until now.  We’ll be showing this incredible film at our store on February 26 at 2 pm. Light refreshments will be served. This event is free, but please call the store to register so we will have enough seating for all. We can promise it will be well worth your time to attend. Check our Facebook page for updates on this in-store event. Contact us for more info!

BRUSH UP ON YOUR PET’S DENTAL HEALTH!

February is dental month for pets! And, the best products for better dental health are better foods! Great choices like our raw, dehydrated, or freeze dried foods or higher protein kibbles don’t have the useless carbs and sugars that allow tartar or yeast to develop, which then causes bad breath, gingivitis and tooth decay. Stock up on digestive enzyme products, like Leba III Spray, ProDen Plaque Off, Indigenous Dental Bones or Willard Water. These products are extremely helpful and easy to use. Plus we offer a great selection of toothbrushes and toothpaste and we’ll be happy to show you how to get your pet used to regular brushing. Don’t forget, teeth brushing is included at no charge when we groom your dogs or cats! Here’s to great smiles for all your pets!

BE OUR CANINE (and feline) VALENTINE!

We’re celebrating the ones who give us unconditional love February 11 – 14 with fun events, store specials, and gifts from our heart to yours! Sign up for PET PORTRAITS, SUNDAY. FEB 12 from 1-4 pm – a photo of you and your met makes the perfect Valentine card! WIN $100 OF HONEST KITCHEN “LOVE” – over 40 lbs of grain free, ranch raised beef and veggies, holistic goodness your dog is sure to love! Register all week long, winner announced Feb.14. FREE SMOOCHES AND NUZZLES, yummy treats also from Honest Kitchen you’ll want to give all year long. VALENTINE’S BAKERY GOODIES – beautifully decorated cookies for dogs, and we’ll have sweet treats for their people too! SHARE THE LOVE WITH PET RESCUE GROUPS! We’ll also be accepting donations for pet food and supplies, a true gift from the heart for pets in need! Check out our Facebook page for more info and events you won’t want to miss!

TIME TO SWITCH TO “COLD WEATHER PROTEINS”

We’re big believers in changing your pet’s food choices along with the seasons. With the cold winter months, it’s time to try warming proteins like chicken, pheasant, venison, trout and lamb. They’ll help create inner warmth they’ll need for extra energy now through March. If their joints are a little stiff and sore especially on these cool damp mornings, add a little tumeric to their diet to help keep them flexible and supple. If you are feeding our higher protein kibbles, like Orijen or Acana, we recommend a little warm water or bone broth, not only for the extra liquid intake, but to keep their tummy’s warm! You can always warm up any of our frozen or dehydrated food options to make they extra yummy, too.

Feel free to contact us with any questions about cold weather proteins.

OUR TIPS TO KEEP YOUR PETS SAFE ON NEW YEAR’S EVE!

New Year’s Eve is a big night for fireworks and parties, which can be scary for your pets. Keep your pets indoors and create a calming environment with soft music. Put some Young Living essential oils, like Lavender or Peace & Calming on a cotton ball and put it gently in their ear or stoke it on their chest and back for soothing aromatherapy. Add our Bach Flowers “Rescue Remedy” to their drinking water or on a treat for natural stress relief. Provide a Kong toy filled with their favorite treat or a No-Hide chew to detract them from the noise. And especially make sure your pets are microchipped and/or wearing identification tags in case they get loose, panic and become lost. We’ll be open New Year’s Eve until 3pm and can help you… and your pets… have a safe holiday!

sick dog under a blanket

Pet Emergencies: The Most Common Issues and How to Address Them

It never fails. Your pet appears sick or injured after your veterinarian has closed for the day. If you live near a 24/7 veterinary hospital, that’s where you must take your animal. Those in rural areas might live considerable distances from such a facility or not have transportation. In each case, when do you know your pet must receive attention as soon as possible and when can it wait until tomorrow? Here are some common issues found in dogs and cats and the best way to address them. Always call your animal care practitioner for advice!

Motor Vehicle Accidents and Other Trauma

If your pet is hit by a motor vehicle or experiences another type of trauma, that’s a veterinary emergency. If the animal is conscious, they may try to bite or scratch, so take care when moving him. If possible, put the pet in a carrier or box, or wrap him gently in a blanket. If you have clean bandages or similar material available, cover any open wounds. Call the emergency hospital and let them know you are on the way, so trained staff can move the animal from your car.

Even if your dog or cat seems fine after an encounter with a vehicle, they still needs an emergency vet visit. They could suffer from internal bleeding or other complications that aren’t immediately apparent.

Bleeding

While an animal with severe bleeding requires emergency treatment, the American Veterinary Medical Association advises taking pets with less serious bleeding to the emergency vet if the bleeding doesn’t stop within five minutes. If your pet bleeds at all from his mouth, anus or nose, coughs up blood or has bloody urine, an immediate trip to the vet is imperative, according to the AVMA.  

Poisoning

If you suspect your pet has been poisoned, time is of the essence. Signs of poisoning include:

  • Excessive drooling
  • Vomiting – especially of blood
  • Diarrhea
  • Coughing up blood
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Collapse

If you know what your pet ingested, your vet may advise you to induce vomiting by giving the animal a teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide. Do not induce vomiting if you don’t know what is poisoning your pet or without consulting a vet or poison control center. Get your pet to an emergency veterinary hospital at once. If your pet threw up, bring a vomit sample to the vet. It may provide the answer as to what poisoned your pet.

Choking

If your pet is choking, you may not have time to get him to an emergency vet even if there’s one fairly close.  Taking care not to get bitten, look into the mouth and see if you can view and/or remove the blockage. The ASPCA advises performing a modified Heimlich maneuver, consisting of a sharp rap to your pet’s chest.

Eye Injuries

Eye problems are always an emergency. Without prompt attention, pets with eye issues may lose some or all of their vision.

Vomiting and Diarrhea

Sometimes these gastrointestinal issues require emergency treatment, but they often can wait until the next day. It’s an emergency if:

  • A kitten or puppy experiences vomiting or diarrhea. Young animals easily dehydrate and die.
  • A dog repeatedly tries to vomit but nothing comes up. That’s a sign of “bloat” – formally known as gastric dilatation and volvulus – which is fatal without emergency surgery.
  • Continuous vomiting and/or diarrhea.
  • Vomiting and diarrhea with blood.
  • The pet has diabetes or another serious disease.

Seizures

Watching your pet go through a seizure is a scary experience, but it isn’t always an emergency. Animals experiencing a seizure may lose consciousness, convulse, fall over and “paddle” their legs uncontrollably. They may defecate, urinate or hypersalivate. If the seizure lasts only a minute or so, and no other seizures follow, you can likely wait until the next day or so to take your pet to the vet, although you should always call your vet for advice. If the seizure lasts more than five minutes or the episodes occur in succession, your pet needs immediate attention.

References

http://www.vcahospitals.com/main/pet-health-information/article/animal-health/common-emergencies-in-dogs/754

https://www.vets-now.com/pet-owners/pet-care-advice/top-pet-emergency/

https://www.avma.org/public/EmergencyCare/Pages/animal-emergencies.aspx

http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/general-pet-care/emergency-care-your-pet

http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/pet-owners/basics/signs-of-poisoning-in-dogs-and-cats/