Safe Travel with Pets

Many families travel with their pets for the holidays. Here are some holiday travel safety tips from Dr. Katie Cox, DVM.

The summer holidays are coming and that means many families will be traveling with their pets. This can be a stressful time for both pets and their families because of the change in day-to-day routine and new environments for the animal. Stress can manifest as many forms, such as fear and apprehension, which could make your pet hide, become nauseous, or show signs of aggression that are not normal for your pet. There are many ways to help decrease stress for our furry friends, whether it be for car or air travel.

Thundershirts can help decrease your pet’s travel anxiety.

Many over-the-counter options are available to help decrease anxiety in dogs and cats. The Thunder shirt is an effective tool that can help comfort your pet and decrease reactions to loud noises. This works by adding mild pressure to your animal’s body, like a hug, to decrease reaction to stimulus. Check your favorite pet store for Thunder shirts or look online at thundershirt.com.

There are a variety of supplements and medications on the market to help with fear and stress, so be sure to talk with your veterinarian about your method of travel. Medications used for sedation are not recommended for plane travel because they can upset the pressure in the brain and affect your animal’s balance. Continue…

Summer Safety Tips for Pets

summer dogWe all love spending the long, sunny days of summer outdoors with our pets, but we have to be careful with our pets in the hot weather. Here are some summer safety tips to keep you pet safe this summer:
Provide fresh drinking water at all times, indoors and outdoors.
Safe outdoor temperatures for pets vary by breed and size.
Dogs with “stubby” noses or what’s known as brachealcephalic, can’t cool down as fast or as good as one with a longer snout.
Do not walk/ exercise your pet mid day. Heat from the sun not only beats down on you and your dog but also concrete or asphalt. If your hand cannot remain a few seconds on the pavement without you removing it, then your pet’s feet should not be on it!   Burns can occur and severely damage the bottom paw pads, this can be very painful and result in your pet’s inability to walk, or stand. Be aware that they cannot verbalize that they/ or their feet are too hot.

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Summer Pet Safety Tips

is your pet safe this summer - fairgorunds animal hospitalThere are many things to think about this summer in terms of keeping your pet safe. Here are some summer pet safety tips that we here at Fairgrounds Animal Hospital hope will keep your pets happy, healthy and having fun:

Do You Take Your Pet Camping or Hiking?

Great! Please make sure they are covered when it comes to ticks and heartworms. There are most likely mosquitoes where you are pitching your tent, and mosquitoes are the carrier for heartworm that can be life threatening for dogs and cats. Ticks have been seen in our area, and are certainly in the mountains and forests. If a tick is on your dog for more than 24 hours, it can transmit disease.  Continue…

Summer Travel with Pets

Summer is here! Are you planning some summer travel with your pet?

Summer is here, and people (and their pets) are traveling more than ever! But before you take off to the beach, the park, or the lake or make those or plan summer travel with your pet make sure you think about where you’re going and what risks there may be for the health of your furry friend. Continue…

Travel Anxiety in Pets

Anxiety caused by a certain event is called situational anxiety, and some dogs and cats can have mild to severe anxiety when faced with a long trip in the car. We avoid these situations when we can, but sometimes, as with a move or an extended vacation—we need to get our animals there. Training/desensitizing by taking the pet on multiple short trips to show them nothing bad will happen works often, but sometimes we don’t anticipate that situation long enough before it arrives, or, in rare cases, the short trips prove to have little effect on the anxiety. In such cases, we can resort to having a veterinarian examine our pets for any underlying issues, and then prescribe appropriate medications that range from treating mild to severe anxiety. Continue…

The Playful and Inquisitive Ferret

Ferrets are very playful and fun – they are great exotic pets for adults and older kids.

Ferrets are Playful and Inquisitive Pets

Ferrets are unique animals from the weasel family. Ferrets are both playful and inquisitive pets. They have a long body with a flexible spine. Ferrets are very playful and fun – they make great exotic pets for adults and older kids! They should be kept in a big cage with a closed bottom and several layers to run and play. Ferrets love to hide and burrow in blankets, so provide a few un-frayed little ones to snuggle up in. Ferrets are also curious and want to explore everything! When they are out and about in the house, ferrets tend to find their way into anything and can get themselves stuck into areas where it is hard to get them out. Supervise them anytime they are out running around!  Continue…

Holiday Pet Safety

holiday-pet-safety    The big holidays are coming, which means special consideration should be taken for our pets and holiday pet safety, since they can experience something drastically different than we do during the merriment of our celebrations. Trick-or-treaters and loud parties can be scary, the thanksgiving turkey on the table can be tempting, well-intentioned guests can give scraps under the table, and Christmas tree lights can present a danger to our pets. Here are a few holiday pet safety tips to keep your cat or dog safe and happy during the holiday season! First, make sure your pet has a safe retreat for holiday parties and Halloween night. Pets are attached to their secure environment and having that intruded upon can sometimes be over stimulating or induce anxiety. Even if your pet is happy to join the festivities, keep a special calm, quiet corner or room available for them that has a comfy crate or bed to hideaway in, food and water, and familiar toys and treats. Visit them a few times during the bustle and give them some love. You are their protector and the leader of their pack, and if you show everything is ok it can help reassure your nervous pet. Continue…

The Dangerous Pink Drink – Pets and Antifreeze

By: Dr. Katie Cox – Fairgrounds Animal Hospital

Antifreeze or ethylene glycol is a common winter necessity for many people in the fall and winter months. While it helps keep pipes and cars from freezing, it is a toxic and sometimes lethal fluid for many animals, including dogs, cats, poultry and cattle. Due to the sweet taste and the fact that it remains in a liquid form in the cold temperatures, many animals (mostly dogs and cats) ingest the liquid or walk through it and then later lick their paws. A small amount of this liquid can be deadly to our furry friends. As little as ½ of a teaspoon is toxic to an 8-pound cat. A toxic dose for a 60-pound dog is 1.3 teaspoons.

Ethylene glycol is broken down into several components in the body that cause severe kidney damage which can quickly progress to kidney failure. Many times, dogs and cats will show clinical signs within hours of ingestion of the liquid. It has also been shown that absorption of the fluid through the skin can be poisonous in cats. The most common signs that dogs and cats exhibit are very similar to those of an intoxicated person. Pets may vomit, walk around as though they are drunk, drink and urinate excessively and become dehydrated very quickly. Within 12-24 hours in cats and 36-72 hours in dogs, animals may stop urinating, exhibit vomiting, diarrhea, excessive salivation, have difficulty breathing and even experience seizures or become comatose.  Any animal that is seen drinking antifreeze or is suspected of drinking it needs immediate veterinary care. There is not an over the counter treatment that owners can administer at home. If you see or suspect that your animal has ingested antifreeze, call your veterinary office right away. Please be candid about the possible ingestion. Our job as a veterinary clinic is not to make assumptions, but to treat your pets to the best of our ability. The best way we can do that is by knowing what we are treating. 

To prevent antifreeze ingestion in your animals, keep it high on a shelf and away from any place they can jump to. If the garage is a warm place for your animals to stay, make sure they cannot reach it or knock it over. Check frequently for any leaks in the bottle or areas where it is used in the household. We care for your animals and want everyone to have a safe and happy winter!

posted in:  Pet Safety

To MicroChip or Not to MicroChip?

A Look Into Microchipping Your Pet

By Tamara Kees

 20150617_094400 (1)   September is travel safety and microchip awareness month at Fairgrounds Animal Hospital, so let’s start by talking microchips! We know you might be wondering what a microchip is, and why you would want one for your pet. Microchips are essentially an ID tag that can never fall off or be taken away if your pet is ever lost or kidnapped—unlike the tags on his or her collar. It is not a tracking device, but it can still dramatically increase the odds that a lost or kidnapped pet will make it back home! A microchip can be scanned at any vet clinic or animal shelter, and the staff makes sure to scan every pet that is new to them during the first visit. A microchip implanted on your pet will be registered under your name, and as long as you update the associated company with changes in your phone number and address, it will have your current contact information attached. Many, many lost or kidnapped pets have been returned home safely because they had a registered microchip in place! Continue…

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posted in:  Microchips  |  Pet Safety

Heat Exhaustion in Dogs

By Tamara Kees

  heat exaustion in dogs - fairgorunds animal hospital  July is Summer Safety Month here at Fairgrounds Animal Hospital, and we’d love to keep you in the know about a serious and sometimes fatal condition these hot days can bring: heat exhaustion and heatstroke. Every summer we admit several dogs who have been overheated and are in serious trouble. For some, it’s already too late to save them. We don’t ever want to see our clients and patients suffer from this preventable tragedy, so today we’ll discuss how to detect heat exhaustion, what to do if you see your dog in distress from overheating, and ways you can make sure it never happens to your furry family members! Continue…