by Coco the Cat
Coco’s Thought of the Day
I am sad to say I have not caught the squirrel yet, but I am hopeful it will be soon. If you see that creature outside my window, tell him that he should be very afraid! He should fear the wrath of the Siamese!
I have noticed that there has been a lot of water dropping out of the sky, and occasionally loud, flashy noises. I’m not terribly fond of all that, but since it hasn’t come in my home yet, I guess I won’t perish from it. They tell me some animals do think that the loud flashy/bangy things are very scary. I think that’s sad, but Dr. Esra says there may be things we can do to help. So, if your pet is afraid of the noises, call the hospital! We might be able to help!
Butt Scoot Boogie!
You’ve all seen it! You’re sitting in your chair watching Survivor, and there your dog goes, scooting on his tush across the floor. First of all, eww….that is the carpet you walk barefoot on. Second, why is he doing that? Is something wrong?
Chances are, your dogs’ anal glands are full. All dogs have two small glands on either side of their tush that act as scent markers. When your dog has a bowel movement, the glands are supposed to put a small amount of scent on the stool and announce to the world that your dog was there!
In a lot of small dogs, and some larger ones, the anal glands don’t empty correctly and they get over full. This is uncomfortable for your dog, so he scoots on the floor to try and relieve them. If your dog does manage to empty those glands that way, you will know it. Anal glands are…ahem…smelly. In addition to causing your dog to scoot, anal glands can become impacted and infected, which is very painful for your dog. In serious cases, the anal glands can rupture, requiring surgery to fix.
If you notice your dog scooting, it’s generally time to call us so we can empty those glands for you. It’s a quick procedure, and you don’t have to deal with the mess. If your dog has a regular problem with his anal glands, there are supplements you can give them that will help them. Here at Nease Animal Hospital, we carry Glandex. Glandex helps your dog empty his anal glands naturally, so he doesn’t require a vet visits as often. It’s relatively inexpensive, and an all natural way to help your pooch feel a lot better.
While we are talking about tushes today….
We often get asked why we recommend fecal testing in dogs and cats on an annual basis. After all, most of our cats are indoor only and our dogs are on heartworm preventative, so the chance of them getting intestinal parasites is fairly low, right?
Well…..not so much.
We live in Florida, which pretty much means that if there is a parasite out there, we have a good chance of getting it. Some of the intestinal parasites such as hookworms can be contracted by simply walking over contaminated soil. So, if your pet walks outside, they can contract parasites. They can also get them from a flea. So if one flea comes into your house, it can give your pet parasites! In addition, some parasites can hide from us, so it may take one or more fecal exams to find the parasite your pet is hosting. The scariest part of all this is that some of the intestinal parasites can be passed to humans, so it is very important to make sure your pet doesn’t have them!
An annual parasite screening is fairly simple to do. Simply bring us a fresh stool sample, and we send it out to the lab. The lab screens the stool for parasites, and sends us the results. If they don’t see any parasites, then there is no further action you need to do. If the lab finds something, then we will prescribe the correct medication to take care of that parasite.
Children and Dog Safety
Dogs and Kids
There isn’t much cuter than pictures of dogs and kids enjoying each other companies. As long as we’ve had literature, there have been stories of children and their beloved dogs. Dogs like Lassie who take care of their kids and are always there to save the day, or more currently, Max, a former working military dog who saves his kid’s lives.
There is no doubt that kids and dogs can be a great thing, but you have to step aside from the stories a bit and remember that not all dogs are Lassie, Rin Tin Tin, or Max. Dogs all have individual likes and dislikes, and not all dogs enjoy children. In fact, many dogs barely tolerate things that we, as humans, take for granted, and that creates quite a safety hazard for our children. The majority of documented dog bites are on children, mainly because children don’t always read dog body language well and don’t know when the dog is saying enough. It’s up to us as the adults to make sure our kids are safe around all dogs! I have listed a few simple safety tips that will help keep you and your children safe.
Remember that MOST dogs do not like hugs. We humans like to hug, but dogs really don’t. It’s better to teach your children to gently pet dogs on their sides or back to show affection instead of encouraging kids to hug the dog. Hugging puts your child’s face right at tooth level, and if that particular dog doesn’t like the hug or is threatened by it, it’s a recipe for a very bad day for both child and dog.
Teach your child to ask the owners before approaching dogs. Not all dogs like strangers, or children, or they may not be feeling well, and it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Make sure to ALWAYS supervise children and dogs, even if this is your family dog and he’s been around kids. Children don’t always follow the rules, and it only takes a second for something bad to happen.
Teaching children to have gentle interactions with dogs is the best way to prevent a child from getting hurt. Allowing them to hit, grab, or climb on dogs backs does several things. It teaches the dogs that children cause them pain, it can seriously injure your dog, and if your dog isn’t that tolerant of children, it can get your child bitten.