Summer as a rule is foxtail season. This year, with the drought in California coupled with drier vegetation, seem to be even more prevalent with these nasty barbed grass-like weed.
Foxtails seem to wedge themselves into almost any place on our pets. Frequently we see them lodged in between toes, inside ears, around eyes, and their genitals. If you see them licking themselves a lot, check it out. Foxtails simply dig themselves directly into a patch of skin. The danger of foxtails goes beyond simple irritation. Because these tough seeds don’t break down inside the body, an embedded foxtail can lead to serious infection for your dog. It can even lead to death if left untreated.
The seeds can be hard to find in your dog’s fur. Look and feel carefuly. My dog had one lodged in his throat after he licked it from some area on his body. They had to put him out to extract it from his trachea.
Don’t forget to look in and around your cat or pooch’s mouth and gums. Check your pet’s paws nightly. Carefully inspect the paw pads for foxtails — especially between the toes. If your pet loves the outdoors, brush them daily.
The easiest way to prevent foxtail problems is to keep your pet out of overgrown, grassy areas. be a responsible pet parent. You should also pull out any foxtail plants you find in your yard. Also consider trimming your dog’s hair during foxtail season, especially if it tends to persistently get foxtails in one spot.
Meanwhile, these pesky plant pieces can cause our pets pain and make them very uncomfortable, and foxtails that remain in place for a long enough time have the potential to cause infection.
If you believe your pet has a foxtail in an especially sensitive spot, call your Vet right away to get your pet seen and have the foxtail removed. The sooner a foxtail is removed the better the outcome for your pet.
Miserable little pests that annoy your pet and you. In 1997, the pet community began using a product called Advantage – a once-a-month topical product that worked miraculously well at killing adult fleas. Many holistic-minded pet parents had concerns about the chemicals used in the product, it seemed to be relatively safe and worked beautifully to keep our pets flea-free over the past 20 years.
Unfortunately, in 2014 the flea control products suddenly stopped working. No one really knows why, but fleas were more resistant to them.
Fleas have a rather complicated life cycle. Only 5% of the flea population exists as adult fleas – these are the fleas we can see on our pets. The majority of the flea population is made up of eggs (50%) that hatch into larvae (35%) and evolve into pupae (10%). Look at killing fleas from the “ground up” to lower their population and protect our pets.
Treating carpets and cracks in hardwood floors, furniture crevices, and bedding, is important. We spray CEDAR OIL (see product on Right side of this Page for Cedar Oil) on our Pets bedding after we wash in Hot water. Laundering bedding and blankets that your fur children regularly lay on is a critical first step. Do this regularly, once a month is a good goal between the months of April and November.
Vacuuming hardwood floors and carpet weekly is important! Some people also use carpet and hardwood floor steam cleaners to apply heat, which is effective against flea larvae. We steam clean (professionally) every 6 months.
Applying safe products like Flea Busters powder into the cracks before vacuuming or sweeping can double your chances of killing the larvae and eggs. Many people use the spray of Cedar Oil or Buck Mountain Herbal Flea Powder sprinkled regularly onto their pet’s bedding to kill adult fleas.
Yards and bushes should should be treated. Flea larva, eggs, and adults live under bushes in the shady areas of your yard and in your garden. Removing overgrown brush and grasses can help remove the fleas’ habitat. Sprinkling organic nematodes (which can be purchased at local nurseries) under bushes is a safe, non-toxic way to dry up and kill the parasites.
A number of Pet Parents successfully use the oral medication, Comfortis as a flea deterrent. Another, second-generation of Advantage, called Advantage II.
Personally, we don’t follow the “apply every 4-6 weeks”. We are mindful about the pesticide being applied to the skin or in their system. We keep a close eye on my pets and administer Comfortis or Advantage or Revolution as needed. We don’t allow one flea on their body. It could be very irritating for your pet and it could lead into a bigger problem for them. Our choice/method of “as needed” works for us and our pet family. Our pets flea environment is controlled and we have never had a problem.
Make sure you are prepared BEFORE the emergency happens.
Do you have a neighbor (s) designated to go to your house to care for your pet incase you do not make it home? Car accidents happen. Earthquakes happen. Fires happen.
BE ahead of the game!
Exercise regularly and enrich your dog’s life with stimulating activities
Your dog needs physical exercise and mental stimulation daily. Just turning him out into the back yard isn’t enough! They love their pack/family and get lonely when left alone for too long!
Make time for your family-your pet. Consider hiring a dog walker if your work schedule is too busy for daily walks.
Don’t forget that one of the gifts our dogs give us is an incentive to move our own bodies. Daily walks prevent obesity and improve the health and well-being of you both.
Training sessions and playing games with your dog on a regular basis are two great ways to keep him/her mentally agile and also help build a strong bond of fun and love between you.
Remember to groom them regular. It’s another bonding experience.
Keep an eye on their dental health.
At this time of the year, people often bring lily flowers and plants into their homes to celebrate Valentine’s Day, Easter and Passover, springtime and many other occasions. Although these flowers are beautiful to look at, they have the potential to be extremely dangerous, especially to cats – something most florists don’t know, and, as a result, they don’t know to warn clients who purchase them.
What can be confusing to many cat owners is that there are both safe and dangerous lilies, and it’s important to know the difference. Safe lilies include the peace, Peruvian, and calla lilies. The more dangerous lilies are true lilies of the Lilium or Hemerocallis species. Examples of some of these dangerous lilies include the tiger, day, Asiatic hybrid, Easter, Japanese show, rubrum, stargazer, red, western, and wood lilies-all of which are highly toxic and potentially fatal to cats! Even a small ingestion, such as a single petal or leaf, or even the pollen or water from the vase the lilies are in, can result in severe, sudden kidney failure.
Interestingly, the lily of the valley variety does not cause kidney failure, but it can cause life-threatening heart arrhythmias and death when ingested by both cats and dogs.
If you see your cat eating, licking, or even sniffing any part of a lily, bring your cat immediately to a veterinarian for medical care – and bring the plant, too. The sooner you bring in your cat, the better and more efficiently the lily poisoning can be treated. Treatments can include inducing vomiting if the kitty has very recently ingested the plant, but more importantly, flushing the kidneys with aggressive intravenous fluids as soon as possible.
The Pet Poison Helpline is a great resource to call, along with your regular veterinarian or local veterinary emergency clinic. The helpline is open 24/7 and can be reached at 855-764-7661.
found this on PBS for Kids:
So you’ve never experienced the death of a close family member or friend, but you do know this: when your dog died suddenly, you were devastated. You felt sad, shocked, and angry, but people kept saying, “Come on, it’s just a dog!” and this made you feel silly for being so upset.
The death of a pet is very different from the death of a person, but we can still learn a lot about grieving from these experiences. In fact, grieving for a pet follows the same basic pattern as it does for people. After all, our pets are members of our family and, sometimes, our best friends. They love us unconditionally and we feel responsible for their safety and happiness.
If you’re struggling with the death of an animal you loved very deeply, consider these ideas:
Hold a funeral or memorial so you can “say goodbye.”
Cry as much as you need to, and talk about what you’re feeling to anyone who will listen and not judge.
Use creativity to express yourself and remember your pet. Maybe make a photo Album. Or Plant a special Plant in the Garden for your pet.
When we lose a pet, it’s very tempting to run right out and get a new “replacement” to fill the empty space in our home and heart. Try not to rush into anything, and give yourself time to work through your emotions.
Hannah, 10, told us how she got through the grieving process after her cat, Tasha, was hit by a car and killed: “I knew I couldn’t bring Tasha back, but a few months later we went to the animal shelter. I fell in love with this new kitty and adopted him, which meant that we saved his life. I liked the idea that we honored Tasha by giving life to another cat.”
February is DENTAL DISCOUNT month at Entirely Pets. Our sale is going on until the end of Feb.
You can click here to save 10% off dental products. Be sure your pet’s teeth are in good health. Your pet’s dental care is more important than you think. If neglected it can lead to kidney or heart illness. Get your pet’s teeth cleaned regularly.
I was watching the TODAY show this morning and saw the most wonderful clip of a woman and her passion for Cats. She is in her late 30’s and she rescues adult cats from shelters. Love her!
She also fosters kittens and helps find them permanent homes.
She adopted an older cat, YODA, from a shelter. Yoda was showing signs of distress so she brought him to the Veterinarian. The Vet said Yoda had about 7 months to live as his heart was compromised. She and her husband decided to keep Yoda until the end of his life and give him the best for the time he had left on this earth.
Fostering a litter of kittens, Yoda wanted to go into the “kitten” room. He immediately became “papa” and started to attend to them. grooming them and hanging out with them day and night. He was there for the kittens in a Papa sort of way. They loved cuddling and sleeping with him. Seven litters later and check-ups with his Veterinarian, Yoda’s heart was healing.
Healing. The condition was not there as it was before. Wow…think about that! ~ Caring for others and feeling of value~ BEAUTIFUL!
Love heals. Especially the sick heart.
Exercise regularly and enrich your dog’s life with stimulating activities
Your dog needs physical exercise and mental stimulation daily. Just turning him out into the back yard isn’t enough! They love their pack and get lonely when left alone for too long! Make time for your family-your pet. Consider hiring a dog walker if your work schedule is too busy for daily walks. Don’t forget that one of the gifts our dogs give us is an incentive to move our own bodies. Daily walks prevent obesity and improve the health and well-being of you both.
Training sessions and playing games with your dog on a regular basis are two great ways to keep him mentally agile and also help build a strong bond of fun and love between you.
Protect your dog from himself or herself
Having a dog is very different than having a child, but many of the same basic safety principles apply. If you drive with your dog, make sure he or she is safely secured in your car with a seat belt (in the back seat to protect her from air bags) or in the proper sized crate. Dogs love to sit up front, untethered and on your lap, but this is extremely dangerous. This can lead to tragic results.
Your home can be just as dangerous as your car for dogs. It is extremely important to “dog-proof” your house, garage, and yard. Is the fencing secure? Are there any toxins or pesticides they can get into? It doesn’t take much. Be mindful.
It may seem obvious but is worth mentioning: Always keep your dog on a leash near traffic or in large crowds. Even in familiar surroundings, your dog can excitedly dash off to chase a squirrel, a dog or a cat, the results could be disastrous.
Remember to trust your instincts.
If you have a feeling that there is something “off” with your pet’s health, take him to a veterinarian who will take your concerns seriously.
source: Dr. Jennifer Taylor at Creature Comfort in Oakland California…and Myself, Barbara Tapella
Your dog or cat may be curious about the pumpkins sitting on your front porch. It’s already Halloween, and your pumpkin may be beautifully carved. While it’s best your pet doesn’t eat that pumpkin, canned natural pumpkin (unsweetened – not pie filling), pumpkin seeds, and cooked fresh pumpkin have many benefits for dogs and cats. There is good reason that pumpkin is often a top ingredient in higher quality kibble. It can help with the following pet ailments:
1) Digestive Health: Pumpkin is a fabulous source of fiber for our furry friends, as well as for us. Pureed pumpkin (with no added sugar or spice) can help dogs and cats with both constipation and diarrhea. Adding a tablespoon or two (in proportion to their size) to their regular meal is known to help keep them regular. I have Labs, so anything is edible, and I’m sure they would eat it right out of the can if I allowed, but most cats are usually a little more finicky. It can also help dogs and cats with indigestion or upset stomachs.
2) Urinary Health: According to Veterinarians Laci and Jed Schaible, co-founders of VetLive.com, pumpkin seeds are high in essential fatty acids and antioxidants (good for overall healthy skin and fur), and the oils in pumpkins’ flesh and seeds are believed to support urinary health. They are also an excellent source of Vitamin A, beta-carotene, potassium and iron, and may even reduce the likelihood your pet will develop cancer.
3) Weight Loss: I’ve written about the dangers and commonality of pet obesity. Dogs seem to naturally love pumpkin. If you are looking to take a few pounds off of your pup or cat, try reducing a portion of their food and replace it with the same portion of canned pumpkin. Their tummy will feel just as full, and they might even thank you for the additional flavor.
I made and baked some great small treats with pumpkin for my pups and they LOVE them!
Source: Lisa Spector is a concert pianist, Juilliard graduate, canine music expert, and local director of Camp Unleashed in California. By combining her passion for music with her love of dogs, she co-founded Through a Dog’s Ear, the first music clinically demonstrated to relieve anxiety issues in dogs. She shares her home and her heart with her two adorable “career change” Labrador Retrievers from Guide Dogs for the Blind, Sanchez and Gina…. And a bit ‘o Barb.