Ahwatukee Animal Care Hospital

10855 South 48th Street
Phoenix, AZ 85048

(480)893-0533

www.ahwatukeeanimalcare.com


Cat Day is Coming! - 10/24/2018

October 29th is cat day! A great way to celebrate fantastic felines is to debunk some of the common myths about them.

Cats always land on their feet. It is often true that cats land on their feet; however, this isn’t always the case. Each spring and summer when the temperatures rise, the incidence of “high-rise syndrome” also rises. The term “high-rise syndrome” was coined in the 1980s when an animal treatment center in New York City treated over 100 cats that had fallen out of high-rise buildings during a five month period. Cats’ reflexes often allow them to turn right-side-up as they fall, depending on the height from which they fall. Cats falling from low heights don’t necessarily land on their feet because they don’t have time to right themselves. Even if a cat does land on her/his feet, she/he may sustain severe injuries to her/his back, pelvis, legs or head. Prevent falls by securing window screens and keep your cat off of rooftop decks and balconies.

Cats are low maintenance. No pet is truly “low maintenance”. Cats require fresh food and water every day, as well as litter box maintenance. They need love and attention. Playing with your cat and spending time grooming him/her should be a daily activity.

Cats can’t be trained. If your cat uses a litter box, your cat has been trained. You can train your cat to do other “tricks”, too. Cats can be trained to “come,” walk on a leash, scratch on a post rather than the furniture, get his/her nails trimmed, shake a paw, and even to sit, roll over, and shake a paw.

Cats are indifferent and aloof. Cats are just as loving as dogs. Cats can develop deep bonds with their family members and rely on their humans for companionship and care. Some cats develop separation anxiety if they are left alone for long periods of time.

Cats only purr when they are happy. Cats also purr when they are in pain. Purring may actually increase in a cat experiencing pain. If your cat is purring while showing signs of pain (i.e. changes in eating/drinking, litter box and grooming habits; and reluctance to be picked up or touched) seek veterinary care for your kitty.

Cats require milk. Cats do not need milk, unless you are thinking of newborn kittens who do need milk – their mother’s or a specially formulated kitten milk replacement- but not cow’s milk. If your cat has a well-balanced diet designed for your specific cat’s age , life stage, and health needs, he or she will get all of the nutrients required. Milk can cause stomach upset since most adult cats are lactose intolerant.

~  Rubbing butter on your cat’s paws will help him or her find his/her way home. When moving from one home to another, some people suggest rubbing butter on your cat’s paws. The idea behind this practice is that licking to remove the butter will also remove the scent of the previous home, as well as provide the cat the opportunity to survey the new home to become familiar with the scents, sights, and sounds. However, rubbing butter on your cat’s paws will only result in greasy paws and floors and will stress out your cat. To help your cat adjust to a new home, keep her/him indoors for at least two weeks. Don’t allow your cat out at night and accompany your cat the first several times he/she does go outdoors. Make sure your cat is microchipped so that, if he/she does get lost, there is a higher chance of being returned to your home.

Cats hate water. Most cats don’t like water, possibly because their coats don’t dry very quickly, leaving them soggy and cold. However, some cats do like water and will play and even swim in it.

Cats and dogs never get along. Dogs and cats often get along; however, it may take some time. If a new pet is being introduced into your home, take steps to make the introductions slowly. Keep the dog on his/her leash during initial introductions. Allow one pet to roam free while the other is confined. This allows each pet to become familiar with the other pet’s presence. Some dogs have a strong prey instinct and love to chase, pin or pick up other animals they perceive as fair game. This can include cats. Likewise, some cats may swat at, growl, or run and hide from dogs. Be aware, careful, and patient when you consider mixing dogs and cats in your home. Ask your veterinarian for help if you need it.

Cats are nocturnal. While it may seem like your cat is nocturnal, playing and performing crazy antics in the middle of the night, cats are actually crepuscular (most active during twilight -periods of dusk and dawn. This instinctive behavior comes from hunting when opportunities to capture prey are better and there is just enough light for them to see. If your cat is active at night you can train him/her to sleep at night be increasing his/her daytime activity level, feeding him/her the largest meal right before bedtime, and ignoring his/her nighttime antics. This may involve confining your cat to an area of the house where you can’t hear his/her requests to play.

 

 


October is Adopt-A-Dog Month - 10/17/2018

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has been in existence for almost two hundred years and is recognized as an organization devoted to helping animals worldwide. One of their efforts is the encouragement of adoption of shelter animals, to save animals lives that otherwise might be euthanized. October is Adopt-A Dog month, established in 1981 as an annual event to encourage people to save animals’ lives as well as to enrich their own lives by adopting a dog.

Millions of dogs all over the world are waiting in shelters to find their forever home and family. Tragically, for many of those dogs that never happens. If you are thinking about adopting a dog, a shelter or rescue dog will not only provide you with a companion, but you will save a life. Shelter and rescue dogs come in all shapes, sizes, ages, breeds, personalities, and colors, so you are sure to find just the pet you are searching for.

Research has shown the benefits of pet ownership. Owning a dog can have physical, mental, emotional and social benefits. Pet owners are happier than non-pet owners. They feel less lonely and have lower rates of depression. Pet owners seem to cope better with stress, grief, and loss. Pets are also wonderful for children, teaching them responsibility, empathy, and enhance self-esteem while helping to combat boredom and loneliness.

Having a dog can have a number of health benefits, leading to increased levels of physical activity and improved heart health, lower cholesterol and blood pressure. Growing up with a dog may help strengthen immune systems and may reduce the risk of allergies in children. Having a dog can also be a great way to meet people and break the ice in social situations. Having a furry face and a wagging tail meet you at the door when you get home can improve your mood and help you relax at the end of a busy day. Having a dog can also help you sleep better, providing a feeling of safety and that someone is keeping watch while you sleep.

So, if you’re thinking about getting a dog, make sure you check out the wonderful dogs in need of a home at your local shelter or go online to search for a rescue organization for the breed you’re looking for before you “shop” for a pet. You will be saving a life and the dog you bring home will be forever grateful and will give you unconditional love.


National Animal Safety and Protection Month - 10/01/2018

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2018 has brought severe weather to many parts of our world. Whether it was forest fires, flash floods, hurricanes, heat waves, flooding and landslides, earthquakes, or ice storms, Mother Nature has not always been kind.

These events serve as a reminder that we must be prepared for unexpected events and natural disasters. Not only is it important for you to have an emergency plan for yourself and your family, but also have one for your pets.

An emergency kit packed with items your pet(s) need should be ready before it is ever needed and easy to grab as you head out the door. Evacuation orders can happen quickly, and you may not have time to gather items you need. In the rush to leave your home and get to safety, you may forget essentials such as medication.

The following is a list of items to take with you and preparations to make in advance.

~  Be sure to have some food packed in Ziploc bags (to keep food dry and fresh) or canned food. If needed, be sure you have a can opener. This food supply should be enough to last at least one week. Be sure to swap out food every few months to ensure its freshness.

~  Bottled water is a must. In many emergency situations, water becomes contaminated with sewage or other contaminants that will make both you and your pet ill. Boiling water before consuming it will kill most bacteria, but will not remove chemicals such as pesticides that may make their way into the water supply during a disaster situation. Your dog will drink between 1/2 and 1 ounce of water per pound of body weight per day. In extreme heat, this will increase. Ensure you have enough water for both you and your pets during an emergency. As with your pet’s food, swap out water every few months to ensure its freshness.

~  Pack collapsible or travel dishes.

~  Your cat(s) will still need a place to eliminate, so having a litter box and a bag or box of litter packed is essential.

~  Waste bags are needed so that you can pick up your pet’s waste.

~  Pack some wipes so that you can clean your hands.

~  Keep some familiar items in your pet’s emergency kit and rotate these out so that they remain familiar. Consider packing a toy, a blanket, or a towel that your pet is familiar with in order to help reduce stress.

~ Have an extra comb or brush in your bag.

~  Have a carrying crate ready. This is especially important for your cat.

~  Have collars and leashes ready.

~  Keep a supply of your pet’s medication in the emergency kit. You will need to swap these medications out with fresh supplies frequently. Check with your veterinarian to see how often you should swap out your pet’s medications and which medications you should pack in your emergency kit. Obviously, refrigerated medications can’t be pre-packed. However, have frozen ice packs ready to help keep medications cold in the case you need to pack refrigerated meds when evacuating.

~ It’s a good idea to pack basic pet first aid supplies such as gauze pads, self-cling bandages(won’t stick to your pet’s fur), antiseptic wipes, cotton swabs,disposable gloves, petroleum jelly, thermometer, sterile saline solution, a muzzle to prevent biting, and a basic pet first aid book.

~  Ensure your pet is microchipped. Unfortunately, during many disasters, pets become separated from their owners. Microchipping increases the chances that you will be reunited with your pet if you become separated. Ensure you keep your contact information that is associated with the microchip up to date. Also, be sure your pet is wearing an ID tag on her/his collar with up-to-date contact information on it.

~  Don’t leave your pets behind. You may not be able to return to your home later.

~  Have a back-up plan. If evacuation orders are issued quickly or situations make it impossible for you to get home to gather your pets, make arrangements ahead of time to have a friend or neighbor pick up your pet(s) and the emergency kit for you.

Taking time to plan and prepare for a potential emergency is worth every minute it takes. Having a kit prepared for your pet(s) will reduce anxiety, stress, and frustration should you need to evacuate. Even if you end up staying in your home, these supplies may be needed if power or water supplies are disrupted during an emergency or severe weather event. Be prepared.


Animal Pain Awareness Month - 09/13/2018

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We all stub our toes, bang our elbows, or lift a heavy box the wrong way and twist our backs. But what about our furry friends? Your pet may cry out if he or she experiences sudden or acute pain; however, what if she or he doesn’t, or what if your pet is suffering from chronic pain, as is common with dental disease or arthritis? How do you know your pet is in pain?

Pets feel pain the same way we do, but they can’t tell us about it in the same way. Since they can’t use words, how do you know your pet is in pain? There are many signs that may indicate your pet is uncomfortable.

Signs of acute pain may be more obvious. For example, your pet may try to bite you or scratch you if you go near or touch the area that is painful. Signs of chronic pain may be less obvious.

Be sure to take your pet to the veterinarian if you notice any of the following changes or signs in your pet:

~ Decreased thirst or appetite

~ Decreased activity or reluctance to play

~ Reluctance to go for walks

~ Reluctance to go up and down stairs

~ Reluctance to jump on surfaces such as couches, chairs, or beds

~ Reluctance to lie down and/or difficulty rising

~ Lameness or holding a paw in the air when sitting

~ Difficulty finding a comfortable position, restlessness

~ Difficulty using the litter box or lapses in house training

~  Unusual body posture

~ Shaking or trembling

~ Hiding

~ Sleeping more or less than usual

~ Squinting, blinking, or rubbing the eyes

~ Licking (over-grooming) a particular area, such as a paw or the hind quarters

~ Fast and shallow breathing or panting for no apparent reason

~ Purring (purring can be related to pain)

~ Unusual vocalizing (including whining, howling, yelping, groaning, growling, and          whimpering in dogs; and purring, hissing, meowing, and growling in cats)

Don’t try to treat your pet’s pain on your own. Your pet may be experiencing what is called “referred pain” (pain felt in a part of the body other than its actual source). Your veterinarian will need to determine where the pain is originating from and treat it accordingly. Treatment may need to address more than just pain relief. For example, if your pet has a scratch on its cornea, this is what needs to be treated – pain medication will not correct the problem. Finally, many pain relievers that are safe for us humans to use are toxic and even fatal to dogs and cats.

Untreated pain is not something that any pet should experience. By paying attention to your pet’s behavior, you will be the first to notice the changes that may indicate that your pet is in pain. Know the signs, pay attention, and call your veterinarian if you notice any signs of possible pain. Your pet will thank you for taking good care of him or her.

 


Back To School Pet Tips - 08/29/2018

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Whether you’re a full-time student yourself, a teacher, a parent of school-age children, or completing courses while working, the relatively relaxed summer schedule has likely gone out the window now that the fall semester has started.

It’s important not to forget about the furry members of your family that will be left home after the family departs. It’s an adjustment for your pets.

It’s easy to  overlook your pets when your days are filled with early departures for work and school, carpooling, homework, and late returns from all of the after-school activities.

Here are some back to school pet tips that will take care of your pet’s needs and allow you to enjoy the time you spend together.

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Start your day with a loving greeting. It only takes a minute to give your pet a quick stroke, scratch behind the ears, or hug, and it will help you both start the day off on the right foot (paw).

Set your alarm clock 15 minutes early so that you will have time to take your dog for an early morning walk. This allow both of you to get some fresh air and exercise. It’s a great way to begin the day and allows some quiet time before the hustle and bustle of your day begins.

Enjoy breakfast together. When you and your family have breakfast, feed your pet at the same time.

Chat to your pet while you prepare lunches for school or work. play fetch with your dog or play chase games with your cat while you complete your morning routine.

Don’t make a big deal of leaving. Extended departures can increase separation anxiety. Instead, encourage your family to give your pet a quick, friendly “See you later! We will be back!” without prolonging the goodbye.

Consider giving your pet a toy filled with treats or kibble to encourage some interactive play while you are preparing to leave, especially for those pets that become distressed when everyone leaves. This will distract your pet and provide her/him with some entertainment while you’re away.

When you return home, take your dog outside to play or for a walk. This will help you wind down from the busy day while providing your pet with some much needed exercise. Chat to your dog while walking or playing and praise him/her.

Allow your pet to rest beside you or your children during homework. Any contact with you is good for your pet.

Set aside time to play. You both deserve some fun every day!

Spend some time petting and/or brushing your dog or cat.  Quality time and loving care will help both of you relax for the night.

Be sure to include all of your family members in caring for your pets. Assign each person a task (i.e. feeding, refreshing the water bowl, cleaning the litter box, playing, brushing). Enjoy each other!

Have a great school year!

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August 22nd is Take Your Cat To The Vet Day! - 08/18/2018

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Many of us consider our annual check-ups with the dentist, doctor, and optometrist the norm. These visits allow our healthcare providers to monitor our health and identify any issues that may impact our long-term well-being.

The same applies to your cat. Making time to take your cat to the veterinarian every year is just as important as scheduling your own health check-ups. Taking your cat for an annual physical examination, dental check-up and professional cleaning, rather than only seeing the veterinarian when your cat is sick or having a problem, is a step in the right direction for preventive care. Cats are masters at hiding illnesses and pain; therefore, routine exams can identify signs of disease before it becomes more serious or severe.

Cats age significantly faster than humans. cats can reach the “human age” of 15 by the end of their first year and about 24 by the end of their second year. Each subsequent calendar year, a cat ages about 4 years. That makes a 5 year-old cat about 36 in human years. Think of your own health – a lot can happen in four years. if your cat is seeing the veterinarian only every 2 or 3 years, this translates into 8 to 12 ‘cat years”.

It is crucial to have an annual examination so that your veterinarian can catch early signs of disease. prevention and early treatment is often less costly than waiting until your cat is ill or requires dental treatment.

Some common conditions that veterinarians may identify in cats are:

~  obesity

~  cystitis (inflammation of the bladder)

~  fleas

~  dental disease

~  heart murmur

~  feline upper respiratory infection

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At an annual visit, any concerns or behavior changes (weight gain/loss, eating patterns, activity level, other behaviors) that you may have noticed with your cat can be discussed and addressed with your veterinarian. These subtle changes may help your veterinarian uncover hidden issues that may not pose problems now, but could down the road.

Many people avoid taking their cat to the veterinarian because it is stressful (for both the cat and the owner). Taking a few steps prior to your appointment may reduce the stress your cat experiences. Leave the cat carrier our as an alternative sleeping spot, and make it as comfy as possible with familiar smelling blankets. If your cat only goes in the car to see the veterinarian, consider going on random car rides with your cat to reduce the association of the car with the veterinary clinic.

Remember an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Be an advocate for your cat’s health and well-being and make an appointment with your veterinarian today for an annual wellness exam for your cat.

 


Check The Chip Day Is Coming! - 08/08/2018

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Check the Chip Day is Coming up on August 15th! Many pets are microchipped for identification purposes just in case the pet becomes lost. However, the microchip is only as good as the information it carries. Therefore, it’s important to make certain you keep the information updated.

A microchip is a tiny computer chip that has a unique number. The chip is about the size of a grain of rice. The unique number on the chip is entered into an international database. Ideally, this number has been registered with the owner’s name and accurate contact information. However, if your pet was already microchipped when he or she came to live with you, the number may have been registered with the kennel club, or breeder from which the pet was purchased.

Once a microchip is implanted in your pet, it cannot be damaged or lost; however, very rarely a microchip will migrate. Microchipping is a permanent method of identification.

It is very important to update your information with the international database if your phone number, address, or email address changes. This is important because correct information will reunite you with your pet should he or she become lost. If information isn’t updated, animal shelters and clinics may not be able to locate the owner.

It is the pet’s owner’s responsibility to keep the registry informed of any change in contact information and to ensure the microchip is registered with the current owner.

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Check the Chip Day reminds owners to contact their veterinarian and make an appointment to have their pets’ microchips scanned. This ensures that the chip is where it is supposed to be; and allows the pet owner or veterinarian to check to ensure the chip is registered to the correct person and associated with the correct information.

If the pet owner already knows the microchip number, there is a free on-line tool available that allows owners to enter the number and find out which database the microchip is associated with. By visiting the corresponding database website, a pet owner can check the registered contact information and update, if necessary. The website for North American microchip registries is: http://www.petmicrochiplookup.org

If your pet isn’t already microchipped or you aren’t sure if she or her is microchipped, consider making an appointment with us to have a microchip implanted today!

 


Dog Swim Safety - 07/19/2018

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Summer is in full swing here in Arizona! Maybe you’re planning a trip to the river, lake or the beach to beat the heat for your family, including your pets. Or perhaps your backyard pool beckons your dog on our hot summer days.

Wherever you spend time cooling off and swimming with your dog this summer, remember these safety tips to prevent a drowning tragedy.

~  Check the water for hazards. Look for blue-green algae and skip the swim if there are any signs of this toxic bacteria in the water. Your dog can become very ill if he or she drinks water contaminated by blue-green algae. Also, be sure to check for fast moving water, debris, and/or rocks that could injure your dog.

~ Be especially cautious when young puppies and older dogs are near the water. Puppies may not have the required swimming skills yet. Older dogs may not realize that they are not as strong as they used to be.

~  No dog should be left unsupervised near the water, whether it be at your backyard pool, the river, lake or the beach. Your dog may suddenly tire and be unable to reach the pool exit or the shore, get into trouble in strong currents or riptides, or get caught up in debris, fishing lines, or other unseen hazards. It only takes a moment of unsupervised swimming for a dog to run into trouble.

~  Pay attention to your dog’s condition as the day goes on. If she or he appears to be getting tired, call it a day.

~  Not all dogs like water and some don’t have the natural instinct to do the “doggie paddle”. Do not force your dog to swim. Forcing him or her will only make your dog fearful of water and could have more serious consequences. If your dog panics, she or he may not be able to keep his or her head up and can quickly go under and down.

~  Teach your dog to swim if she or he doesn’t know how. If you don’t know how to start the process, consider enlisting the help of a dog trainer. We can recommend several for you. Use a dog life vest until your dog has learned the swimming skills he or she needs, or for the dogs who just don’t seem to “get it”. Supervision is still required, even when your dog is wearing a life vest.

~  If you are swimming in your pool, your dog may not be able to get out on his or her own. train your dog to use the stairs and/or lift him or her out when he or she swims to the edge.

~  If you are at the ocean, watch for jelly fish. Your dog doesn’t know that she or he should avoid these stinging creatures. Don’t allow your dog to eat fish or other sea creatures that have washed up on the shore – they can make your dog sick.

~  If the water is cold and you’re starting to feel cold, so is your dog. It’s time to call the swim over. Your dog won’t understand that it’s the water making him or her cold, and hypothermia is possible if the dog stays in the water.

~  Make sure you offer your dog fresh water all day. Swimming is exercise and your dog will need to replenish lost water. It is not ideal for your dog to drink water from the ocean (it may cause vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration), the river (it may contain bacteria and parasites that can cause illnesses such as Giardiosis, Cryptosporidiosis, Pseudomonas infections, and Leptospirosis, or the pool (high chlorine levels can cause gastrointestinal upset).

~  Be sure to rinse your dog off after swimming, whether he or she was in your pool, the river, a lake, a pond, or the ocean. Salt water, chlorine, algae, and contaminates can irritate your dog’s skin. Also, give her or him a good rub down to help her or him dry off. Spend some extra time drying your dog’s ears to help prevent ear infections.

~  Take a pet CPR course and/or consult our website for CPR tips just in case you need the knowledge. It’s good to be prepared.

Enjoy splashing with your dog! Have a good rest of your summer

 


Canine Overheating - 06/27/2018

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Arizona summer temperatures are soaring! Even a short walk in the early morning or evening is enough to make us hot and in need of a cool drink and a dip in the pool. Imagine how your dog feels if she or he has to stay outdoors for extended periods of time in the heat, especially during the extremely  hot daylight hours.

Overheating goes by many different names: heat stroke, heat prostration, or heat exhaustion. it doesn’t matter what you call it – overheating spells trouble for dogs. Our extreme Arizona heat can quickly cause more than just discomfort. It can make pets quite ill. Indeed, elevated body temperatures can be fatal.

Overheating is more likely to occur when both temperature and humidity are high, so monsoon season is especially dangerous. However, our summer temperature are so hot the danger for dogs is very present even when humidity is low. When the humidity is higher it makes it difficult for the body to cool itself.

When a dog experiences heat exhaustion, his or her body temperature may rise rapidly from about 101.5 degrees F to 104-105 degrees F. When the dog’s body reaches these temperatures, the dog is unable to regulate her or his body temperature, which continues to rise. At these temperatures, internal organs can be damaged and, without a quick cool down, major organs may become irreversibly damaged.

One of the most common causes of death due to heat exhaustion is dogs being left in a hot car with the windows closed (even for just a couple of minutes). Never leave your dog in the car, not even to run a “quick errand”.

Dogs are more prone to overheating because they don’t regulate their body temperature the same way people do. When we humans become overheated, we perspire. The perspiration evaporates and helps to cool the body.

Dogs don’t perspire. Dogs lose excess body heat by panting. However, panting doesn’t work as well as perspiring. Furthermore, dogs have a fur coat that they can’t remove. They can’t turn down the temperature on the thermostat, turn on a fan to sit in front of, or pour a tall, cold glass of water.

While all dogs can experience heat exhaustion, some are more prone to overheating than others. The very young or very old tend to have more difficulties with overheating. Overweight dogs are also more prone to overheating. Breeds with short noses, such as Pugs, Boston Terriers, Shih Tzus, and Bulldogs don’t dissipate heat as well as long-nosed breeds. Additionally, dogs with thick, heavy coats, such as Huskies and Saint Bernards, can overheat much more quickly than other dogs. These breeds require extra care and caution during hot weather.

It’s our responsibility to provide protection from the het for our dogs, especially those that spend a lot of time outdoors, or those more prone to overheating. It is important to make sure there is plenty of shade in the yard throughout the day. train your dog to rest in the shade by placing her or his water bowl and toys in the shade. Provide a constant supply of fresh, cool water. It doesn’t take long for water to heat up in our temperatures. Keep the water cool by adding ice cubes to the bowl.

Some dogs find a dip in the water very refreshing. A plastic kiddie pool works well. If you have a swimming pool, train your dog to swim and how to use the steps to exit the pool. Dogs can’t climb ladders. Accidental drownings occur all too frequently as dogs exhaust themselves when they can’t find a way out of the pool. if your pool only has a ladder, don’t allow your dog to go in the pool unless you can lift him or her out and you are supervising the swim.

Don’t exercise your dog during the day here in Arizona, especially the hottest part of the day. Sidewalks are far too hot to be walking your dog after 7 AM during our summer. Take your dogs for walks early in the morning before the concrete and air temperatures get too warm. Take shorter walks than usual. Bring a dog water bottle or collapsible water dish with lots of water and stop frequently for drink breaks. Find shaded areas to exercise. Give your dog a spray down with a hose when you finish exercising or your walk; however, let the water flow a few minutes before spraying your dog as water left sitting in the hose will be hot enough to burn your dog.

Signs of Over Heating

It’s important for you to recognize the warning signs of heat exhaustion. Pets that suffer from over heating may show the following signs:

Excessive panting

Pale Gums

Increased heart rate

Drooling thick, ropey saliva

Vomiting

With extreme heat exhaustion, dogs experience breathing difficulties and may become disoriented or non-responsive. They may collapse and be unable to move. In the most severe cases, dogs become comatose and die.

What To Do

if you notice any of these signs in your dog, provide emergency care and get to your veterinarian as quickly as possible. Immediately move your dog to a cooler area inside an air-conditioned house, under a shade tree, or in front of a fan. Wet your dog with cool (NOT ice cold) water. Gently wet her or him with a hose or immerse her or him in a tub of cool water DO NOT force your dog to drink water. Place wet towels on him or her and drive to your veterinary clinic with the air conditioner running in your car.

Your veterinarian will begin other life-saving measures in the hospital to avoid organ damage. This may include an IV with rehydrating fluids, medications to stabilize respiration and shock, and may include a hospital stay for further treatment and laboratory tests to assess organ function.

35819522_1972173549760982_6725717987224977408_n   Summer is a great time to be outdoors!

Enjoy the summer while you take care to prevent over heating in both your dog and yourself.

 

 

 


June Is National Pet Preparedness Month - 06/07/2018

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June is National Pet Preparedness Month. It’s a time to ensure that you are prepared for an emergency – not only for you, but also for your pets. The safety and survival of our pets lies with us, as pet owners, so take some time to make sure you have all of the supplies you need for your pet in the event of an emergency.

The following are items you should have packed in a “pet emergency kit.” Have this kit ready to take with you in case of evacuation.

Bottled water. In many emergency situations, water becomes contaminated and tap water is not safe to drink. You should have at least a 72 hour water supply for both yourself and your pet. How much water is a 72 hour supply?

A normal active person needs about 3/4 of a gallon (about 3 liters) of water (or other fluids) daily. In other words, for 72 hours, each person in your home needs about 2 1/2 gallons (9 liters) of water.

For pets, this amount varies depending on the size of the animal. Generally, a dog will drink between 1/2 to 1 ounce of water per pound of weight per day. In other words, a 65-pound dog will drink between 1/4 to 1/2 gallon (1-2 liters) of water daily. For 72 hours, this sized dog would need about 3/4-1 1/2 gallons (3-6 liters) of water.

A cat’s daily water requirement is about 5-10 ounces of water per day. Therefore, a cat would need about 15-30 ounces of water for 72 hours.

thumbnail_Unknown-5   In extreme heat, these water needs would be higher.

Food supply. Be sure to have a 72 hour food supply, including food and water bowls and a can opener, if you use canned pet food. Be sure to swap out food every few months to ensure that it stays fresh.

Pet medication. Keep a supply of your pet’s medication in your pet emergency kit. This is extremely important if your pet’s life depends on the medication. Swap out medication frequently, so that you always have fresh medicine in your kit.

Medical records and identification. Keep a copy of your pet’s medical records, along with your veterinarian’s contact information in your emergency kit. It’s also wise to keep a photo of your pet in the kit in case you are separated from him or her. If your pet is microchipped, keep a copy of the microchip number in the kit.

Toys, blankets, towels. These familiar items will help reduce the stress your pet will experience if you must evacuate your home. Consider rotating these items in the kit so that they remain familiar to your pet.

Brush and comb. Pack a brush and comb in your pet’s emergency kit. If your pet gets wet, you should towel her or him off and brush her or him well to avoid mats or hot spots.

Leash, collar, harness, crate. A carrying crate is essential when evacuating a cat. A sturdy leash and harness will help keep your dog safe and under control. Your pets may sense the distress in the situation and not respond to your commands as they normally would. Be patient with them.

Waste bags and hand wipes. Be sure to pack plenty of waste collection bags and hand wipes for quick hand cleaning.

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ALWAYS take your pet with you. Never leave your pets behind, thinking you can return and get them later. Situations change and conditions can deteriorate quickly and you may not be able to return to your home.

ALWAYS have a back-up plan. Be sure that a friend or neighbor has access to your home to retrieve your pet and emergency kit if you are unable to get home.

Take some time and prepare or update your pet’s emergency kit with all of the important necessities and develop an emergency plan with your family that includes your pets. Hopefully, you will never need the kit, but it is better to be prepared. Your pet is depending on you to take care of him or her!