Puppy Timeline: How Puppies Grow up to Be Dogs

Article Featured on Hillspet.com | By Jean Marie Bauhaus

Puppy development involves a lot of stages and milestones as puppies grow into adulthood. Whether you’ve adopted a puppy and you’re wondering when he’ll calm down and stop chewing on everything — or you’re simply curious about what puppies go through to become full-fledged dogs — this puppy timeline has the answers you’re looking for.

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Is Your Puppy Ready for Adult Dog Food

A puppy’s nutritional needs are different than those of adult dogs, but as your puppy grows, how will you know when it is time for adult dog food? The answer is more complicated than just your puppy’s age, but it is possible to make a safe and healthy choice for your growing friend.

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What is Normal for a Newborn Puppy

By Samantha Bloomfield | Article Featured on Veterinary Experts

If you have not bred a litter of puppies before it can be an anxious time. Knowing what is normal for a newborn puppy will help reduce some of that anxiety for you and also enable you to detect a problem early, which is vital if a sick puppy is to have any chance of survival.

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Surviving Your First 30 Days With a New Puppy

Article Featured on Vetstreet.com

You want to know the first two thoughts of a new puppy owner?

I got a new puppy!

Now what do I do?

Congratulations! You’ve just entered the Twilight Zone. In a good way, of course. For the next 10 or more years, you are going to have more fun and love and licks than you know what to do with. Let me help you get started with the first month, and then you and your puppy will be off and running to a great life together.

Going Home

The first day with your new puppy will involve traveling, whether it’s a short distance from the shelter or a local breeder or a long ride in a car or the cabin of a plane. This is the perfect opportunity to start teaching your puppy to love his crate. Be sure it’s well stocked with treats and, if possible, a towel or T-shirt that bears the scent of his mother and littermates. That will go a long way toward making him comfortable in his new surroundings.

When you arrive, make sure he potties before you bring him indoors. Praise him and give him a treat when he does. Keep him on leash inside — free run of the house is still far in his future.

Sit on the floor with him or on the sofa, if you plan to allow him on the furniture. Love on him and talk to him, so he gets to know the sound of your voice and touch of your hand. This is a great time to start teaching him that it’s OK for you to touch his paws, look inside or sniff his ears, rub his belly, touch his tail and groom him with a soft brush.

Remember that puppies don’t have good bladder or sphincter control yet, and excitement can make them need to pee or poop. Take your puppy out to potty after 15 to 20 minutes of play, as well as after every meal. A potty run should be the first thing you do with him in the morning and the last thing you do with him at night.

Let your puppy spend a short amount of time in his crate. This is a big day for him, and he needs some time to himself, so he can process his new situation. It’s okay to have the crate in the living room or some other area in the home where people are coming and going, but don’t bug him while he’s in there. Unless he needs to go potty, walk away calmly if he starts to whine or bark. Don’t let him out until he’s being quiet.

You’ll want to get your pup to the veterinarian within 48 hours of bringing him home. That’s important to make sure he’s in good health. Many puppy purchase contracts require an exam within that time frame as well. Without it, the seller may be unwilling to accept the pup’s return if he has a serious illness or congenital or hereditary defect.

The first visit can be strictly for a physical exam and weigh-in. It’s a good opportunity for your pup to meet some nice new people, get handled by them and get some yummy treats. Depending on when his last set of vaccinations took place, you can then schedule the next round of vaccinations.

Eating, Sleeping and Playing

Feeding your puppy does more than help him grow — it’s a way of bonding, and it gets him on a schedule that makes it easier for you to house-train him. Start with the food the breeder or shelter has been giving him. If you want to change it, gradually mix in the new food over a week to 10 days to limit tummy upset.

I don’t recommend free-feeding dogs — leaving food down all the time — at any point in their lives. A regular mealtime gives your dog something to look forward to, helps prevent obesity and ensures that you know if he is starting to eat less or becoming ravenous, both of which can indicate health problems. Consider hand-feeding your puppy for at least the first week he is with you. Just as you would if you were feeding him from a bowl, measure his food, so you don’t give too much. Give him pieces of kibble from your hand as long as he is sitting still or looking at you. Don’t reward him for jumping up, barking or doing anything else you don’t like. Feed him in different areas of the house.

If you walk away with the bowl and he follows you, give him some more. Sit in a chair or stand in the kitchen. Pretty soon, you can start asking him to do things, such as sit, down or spin for kibble rewards. This shouldn’t take more than a few minutes per meal, and any family member can do it.

The longer you hand-feed, the better. This will help your puppy to develop a soft mouth, so he doesn’t nip or bite when he takes things from your hands. It teaches trust and self-control. It helps him learn not to wolf down his food. And it creates a dog who will likely be crazy easy to train, because he will be so focused on you.

Your puppy’s socialization continues through the night — even though you’re both asleep. You may plan to let your pup sleep on the bed, but right now he’s still too young to be allowed that privilege. When it’s bedtime, take him out for one last pee and then matter-of-factly put him in his crate with a treat and his towel that smells like Mom. Don’t respond to whining or barking. Tell him good night and go to bed yourself. He’ll soon settle down, and your scent and the sound of your breathing will help to calm him.

Depending on his age, he might not be able to last through the night without another potty outing. If you hear whining or scratching at the crate door late at night, hustle him outdoors, so he can do his business, and then bring him right back in to his crate. You don’t want him to get the idea that you’ll play with him in the middle of the night.

You most likely bought a few toys before bringing your new pup home. Now that you’ve observed him for a couple of days, you probably have a better idea of how he likes to play and what types of toys intrigue him. If he’s a big pup who likes to chew, make sure his toys are tough. They shouldn’t have any pieces that he can chew off and swallow or any stuffing that can come out if he rips the toy apart.

Some pups are gobblers. They rapidly bite off and swallow pieces of rawhide or anything else they can chew up. Avoid giving them anything like that and stick to large, tough rubber items, such as balls that they can’t take a bite out of.

I’m a big fan of puzzle toys, too. Put food or treats inside and watch your puppy go to work trying to figure out how to get at them.

Learning Starts Early

Depending on where you got him, his breed and his individual breeder, your pup is anywhere from 7 to 12 weeks old. That’s right during his critical learning period, when he is soaking up all kinds of information about the world around him and how he should behave in it.

This critical period lasts until he is 14 to 16 weeks old, so you may have as little as a couple of weeks to make the absolute most of this rapid learning stage. Of course, he’ll still learn afterward, but the things you teach during this time — good and bad — will really stick in his memory, so make sure it’s the right stuff. The goal is for him to have lots of positive experiences with friendly people, dogs and cats.

Meeting the neighbors, learning the sounds in your home and neighborhood, and going to the veterinarian for the first time are all part of your puppy’s socialization process. Once he’s been with you for a week, it’s time to turbocharge his introduction to the world.

During his critical learning period, your puppy should meet at least 100 different people, not just the same 10 people over and over again. To get the numbers up, introduce him to the people delivering mail and packages and the gardeners in your neighborhood. Take him for short car rides and on errands, where you can take him into local businesses, such as the dry cleaners, a private postal service or an open-air shopping mall. (Be sure he potties outside immediately before you take him onto the premises, so he’s always welcome back.) If it’s a place where other dogs might go, carry him in a puppy sling or backpack or put him in a cart and don’t expose him to other dogs until your veterinarian tells you he’s had enough vaccinations. Take treats for strangers to give him.

Meeting new people and having lots of different experiences is important, because it gives a puppy broad experience to draw on later in life. A puppy who has met only middle-aged people or only your friends or neighbors doesn’t cope as well when he meets other types of people, such as young children, people wearing uniforms, people in wheelchairs or people from other cultures.

A little adversity during this time is good for your pup’s adventurous soul. Moderate amounts of stress during the socialization period can prepare a puppy to be ready for anything. Give him a change of elevation by putting him on top of a picnic table or clothes dryer, or surprise him with a toy while playing peekaboo. These simple things can help him become unflappable as he matures.

Time for School

The first two to three weeks after you bring him into your house is a great time to start training him at home. You’re teaching him how to learn and developing a relationship with him at the same time — a real win-win! It’s easy to teach tricks, such as sit, down, come, high-five, roll over and more. You should also start to work with him on important commands like “drop it” and “give it,” which not only improve his manners but can help to keep him safe.

Start looking for a good puppy kindergarten class as soon as you take your pup home. By the time he has typically had two sets of vaccinations — usually by 10 to 12 weeks of age — he’s ready to start school. Ask your veterinarian when your puppy is ready.

Puppy kindergarten classes offer socialization opportunities with other pups and people. The trainer can help you learn to teach your dog throughout his life. If you’re smart, you’ll never let learning end for your dog. Learning new things keeps his mind and body active and helps to keep him out of trouble.

Here are six things your puppy should be learning:

  • No teeth on people — ever!
  • No jumping up on people.
  • Always potty outside (don’t give him any chances to make a mistake).
  • Meeting people is great!
  • Going to the vet is fun!

Oregon Veterinary Specialty Hospital (OVSH) has been serving the Portland and Beaverton area community since 1979. Dr. Robert T. Franklin (Internal medicine) welcomes referrals from veterinarians all over the Pacific Northwest. Our goal is to help your pet regain health and live a long and happy life.

Oregon Veterinary Specialty Hospital

Address
9339 SW Beaverton Hillsdale Hwy,
Beaverton, OR 97005.

Phone: 503.292.3001
Fax: 503.292.6808
Email: info@ovshosp.com

10 Pet-Proofing Steps for New Dog Parents

Article By Dr. Becker | Featured on Mercola Pets

Bringing a new pet into the family is an exciting time, but it can also be stressful. There’s so much to remember and do to make your new animal companion’s homecoming a joyful and positive experience, it can be easy to overlook something – even something potentially hazardous.

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How to Tell If Your Dog Has Worms

Article Featured on PetHelpful

Worms are one of the most common health problems for a dog. Fortunately, most cases are also very treatable. Since your dog can’t speak English, you need to be vigilant and watch for any unusual behavior.

Unfortunately some types of worms do not cause noticeable symptoms until they dog’s health is at risk. But the most common types are fairly obvious.

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Original Article By PetMD
Think you know all there is to know about puppy and kitten nutrition? Are you aware that puppies and kittens are more sensitive to nutritional imbalances than adults, for example? Or that excess calcium intake can cause a puppy to develop orthopedic disease?
Go past Puppy and Kitten Nutrition 101 to learn lesser-known facts about their dietary needs. Then use this knowledge to provide your newest family member with the proper start in life she needs to thrive for years to come.

1. A Balanced Diet Is Even More Important for Growing Animals Than for Adults

All animals, regardless of age, need a balanced diet to thrive, but puppies and kittens are especially sensitive to nutritional imbalances, says Dr. Jonathan Stockman, a board-certified veterinary nutritionist at the James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital at Colorado State University in Fort Collins. “The requirements and the sensitivities to excess in nutrients are generally highest.”
One example is calcium, an essential dietary mineral that plays a critical role in bone development. In excess, calcium can cause a puppy to develop severe bone changes and orthopedic disease, he says. “Large and giant breed puppies are particularly sensitive to this, whereas adult dogs are able to regulate calcium absorption when the diet is high in calcium.”
 

2. Puppies Should Not Be Fed Adult Formula Food

Because they are sensitive to nutritional imbalances and their energy needs are greater, puppies should only be fed a growth formula diet, vets say.
Growth places the highest energy and nutrient demands than any other life stage on a dog or cat, apart from lactation, says Dr. Jessica Harris, a board-certified veterinary nutritionist at Carolina Ranch Animal Hospital in Garner, North Carolina. “The energy needs of a puppy are two-fold: 1) support the tissues already developed and 2) provide the energy required to form new tissues.”
Puppies use about 50 percent of their consumed energy for maintenance and 50 percent for new tissue development in the early growth phase, Harris says. “As the puppy gets older, the energy needed to support growth diminishes and proportionately shifts to support maintenance. Energy is provided by protein, fat, and carbohydrates. Thus, growth diets often provide a greater percentage of protein and fat to support growth than do adult maintenance diets.” Growth diets also provide optimal amounts of calcium, phosphorus, copper, and essential fatty acids, “which have an important role in bone formation and maturation, cartilage maturation, hair color, red blood cell development, and trainability.”

3. Unchecked Growth Can Be Harmful to a Dog’s Bones

Feeding a puppy to maintain her ideal body condition versus allowing maximum growth promotes the optimal rate of bone development, says Harris, who is also a clinical nutrition instructor at the Topeka, Kansas-based Mark Morris Institute.
“The adult weight and size of the animal is not impacted by whether the growth rate is rapid or slow, however, the risk of skeletal deformities increases with the rapidity of growth.”
Determining a puppy’s body condition score (BCS) is a reliable way to determine normal growth rate. Body scoring helps you gauge if your dog is maintaining a healthy muscle mass and body fat index. It’s something you can practice at home, using your hands and visual observation.

4. Young Animals Need Multiple Feeding Times to Thrive

Animals rely on reserves for energy in between meals, says Harris. “These energy reservoirs are stored glycogen in the liver or fat depots throughout the body. Ketones produced by the breakdown of lipid or amino acids can also provide energy.  As young animals often have limited reserves and are at risk for the development of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), multiple meals offered throughout the day best averts the onset of lethargy, trembling, weakness, lack of coordination, and seizures.”
Puppies should eat at least three meals per day, and kittens younger than 6 months should be fed more often, “For example, four to six times a day,” says Dr. Donna Raditic, a board-certified veterinary nutritionist with Nutrition and Integrative Medicine Consultants based in Athens, Georgia.
This should be accompanied by close monitoring—with your veterinarian—of body weight, muscle condition score (MCS), and BCS, Raditic adds. She encourages pet parents to use a food gram scale to weigh food and monitor daily caloric intake.
Just like human weight loss programs will use food gram scales to educate us about portion size and caloric intake, weighing your puppy/kitten’s diet right from the start will help you to be sure you are feeding the correct amount,” she says. “Adjusting intake in grams is much more accurate than going from one-eighth cup to one-fourth cup.”

5. Nutritional Needs Differ by Breed Size

There are a few key differences in the nutrient needs of large breed puppies as compared to small- to medium sized breeds, says Harris. Most of these focus on reducing the risk of developing orthopedic disease.
“Although the development of musculoskeletal disorders is multi-factorial and a complicated disease process, it has been correlated nutritionally with calcium, phosphorus, the calcium-phosphorus ratio, vitamin D, and energy intake,” she explains. “Large breed growth diets contain a little less than 1 percent calcium and more than adequately meet the growing large breed puppies’ calcium requirement. Small- to medium-sized breeds are less sensitive to slightly overfeeding or underfeeding calcium, and as a result, the level of calcium in foods for these puppies have a broader margin of safety.”

6. A Gruel Formula Can Help Ease the Weaning Process

Providing your companion with porridge-like formula during weaning—which starts when an animal is about 3 to 4 weeks old and is marked by the eruption of baby teeth and an interest in solid food—can help ease the process, Harris says.
“It has been largely successful to introduce a gruel made by blending a canned growth food with a canine/feline liquid milk replacer in a 1:1 ratio,” she says. “Alternatively, one part dry commercial food can be ground in a food processor and mixed with three parts of canine/feline liquid milk replacer.”
She says the young animal should always have access to the formula, and that it should be replaced three to four times a day. It will spoil and promote bacterial growth if left out at room temperature for prolonged periods.
It’s during playtime that a young animal typically encounters the gruel, then will progressively consume small amounts. “As the young animal’s interest increases, the liquid portion of the mixture can be gradually reduced until they are consuming only the canned or dry commercial growth diet, usually between 6 and 9 weeks of age,” Harris says. “This transition is a delicate balance between the mother, the young, and the owners and requires close monitoring and patience.”
Not all brands of milk replacer are equal, however. “Care should be taken when selecting the milk replacer, as not all brands meet the minimum nutrient requirements for growth per American Association of Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) for all labeled species.”

7. Feeding Methods are Not One-Size-Fits-All

Pet parents have three options for feeding growing puppies and kittens: Free choice, which makes the food available 24/7 (like an all-day buffet); time-limited, where food is out for a set period of time; and amount-limited, where portions are pre-determined.
“Each have their own benefits and drawbacks and what is right for one animal may not be the best option for another,” Harris says. “Therefore, it is strongly recommended that the [owner] have a discussion with their veterinarian about the best feeding option for their growing pet.”
Size and breed are factors that can impact that decision. For example, “free-feeding puppies can be problematic for the large, giant breeds,” says Raditic, who also co-founded the Companion Animal Nutrition & Wellness Institute.
“If rapid growth is induced, this may drive the genetics of these breeds at risk for developmental orthopedic disease (for example, hip or elbow dysplasia),”she says. “For small and medium breeds, it can be problematic increasing body fat—for these breeds are at risk for obesity and to be overweight.”

8. Working with Your Companion’s Natural Behavior Can Provide Additional Health Benefits

Working with an animal’s instincts can promote health and well-being. “Simulating normal feeding behavior will increase activity, reduce boredom, help with weight management and prevent obesity, and strengthen the bond between cat and owner,” says Dr. Amy Learn, a veterinarian at Cary Street Veterinary Hospital in Richmond, Virginia.
Cats are innate hunters, so work to add enrichment to their feeding regimen. “For example, using feeding toys or embracing a cat’s three-dimensional world,” Raditic says.
Dogs evolved as hunters, as well as scavengers. “These activities were a substantial part of their daily time budget and are not currently utilized when we hand them a bowl of food,” Raditic says. You can still honor a dog’s natural behavior, however, by allowing her to work for her food “with puzzle toys or programs like ‘learn to earn,’ which have been shown to provide mental stimulation,” explains Learn.
The more we understand about a young puppy or kitten’s dietary needs, the better care we’re able to provide. Early nutrition deeply impacts puppies and kittens and sets the stage for longevity and quality of life, Raditic says. “Every pet parent needs to understand and own this preventative care for their furry companion.”


Oregon Veterinary Specialty Hospital (OVSH) has been serving the Portland and Beaverton area community since 1979. Drs. Steven F. Skinner (Neurology, Neurosurgery) and Robert T. Franklin (Internal medicine.) We welcome referrals from veterinarians all over the Pacific Northwest. Our goal is to help your pet regain health and live a long and happy life.

Oregon Veterinary Specialty Hospital

Address
9339 SW Beaverton Hillsdale Hwy,
Beaverton, OR 97005.
Phone: 503.292.3001
Fax: 503.292.6808
Email: info@ovshosp.com

Dogs Love Rolling in Stinky Stuff

Original Article By HowStuffWorks
My setter-mix, McBeal, had a particular fetish. When she was still with me, my property was covered in trees. Every fall, as trees are wont to do, the leaves fell to the ground. Mix in some rain and various organic matter, such as Read more

10 Tips for Bringing Dogs and Cats Together

Original Article By Animal Planet
The war between cats and dogs is a topic of debate from Hollywood to hometowns. Multiple-pet owners have examples of cats that buddy up to their canine companions, of dogs chasing cats off their turf, or of the two species respectfully ignoring each other. The two don’t have to automatically “fight like cats and dogs.” Their ability to get along is shaped by their individual experiences with the other specie accumulated before they are paired. Their communication styles differ too which can lead to confusion: A dog wags his tail to show happiness and eagerness to play; a cat lashes her tail to indicate displeasure or anger. You can help them to share a home by keeping each pet’s best interests and instincts in mind. Here are 10 tips.

1. Promote puppy love and kitten closeness

Because puppies and kittens have had no (bad) experiences with each other, they will get along more quickly than older pets. So it makes sense, if you are thinking of having one of each, to get them as youngsters. Growing up together, they will form a bond. However, a puppy’s play may still be a bit rough for a fragile kitten that will always be tinier than her canine mate. Always supervise their interactions, even if they are friendly: A kitten may signal that she’s finished playing but the energetic puppy could still be eager to go, and his activity may confuse her. Teach the puppy to play by chasing a toy, never his smaller feline buddy; this will ensure he grows up respecting, not pursuing, smaller animals.

2. Make the match

A cat who is curious about but not fearful of dogs, and a dog who has at least a nodding acquaintance with felines are the ideal pairing. Whichever pet you’re adopting, a rescue organization or animal shelter will gladly work with you to help select the best candidate, based on the history and personality of the animal you’re choosing and the one at home.
A stray or feral cat that needs to be socialized and acclimated to indoor living can be a hazard to a resident dog, because she is accustomed to seeing dogs as the enemy, animals to be fought rather than befriended. And some dog breeds, such as terriers, hounds and herding dogs, shouldn’t live with cats. Their instincts, which drive them to catch, shake and kill prey, will endanger felines which they see as something to chase.

3. Slow that intro

Cats are both territorial and not fond of change, so a supervised, gradual awareness of another pet is the best method for keeping the peace. Patience is a must, because the introduction phase could take anywhere from a few days to several weeks, or longer in some cases. Stick to the animals’ preferred pace, and don’t force them to be together. Speak in soft, conversational tones to both animals, and spend quality time with each in their separate spaces, not neglecting the resident pet to give the new one extra attention. Letting each animal see the other for brief periods in a neutral room and gradually increasing the exposure, will assure them that there’s room for more than one pet.

4. Meet your restrained roomie

Keep your dog’s leash on during early meetings with your cat, so that if he becomes aggressive, even in play, you can limit his movements and calmly but firmly discipline him. If he’s trained, command him to take the “down-stay” position. Keep the cat out of the dog’s biting range, and allow her to escape the dog’s attention if she wants to (but not flee throughout your home!) You can also have the animals meet from opposite sides of a pet gate at first, but don’t allow them to touch noses or otherwise get too close until each is more accustomed to the sight of the other. Some pet owners place the cat or small dog in a carrier or crate, and let the other pet sniff and circle the confined animal. This depends largely on the disposition of the confined pet. He or she may be just fine with a stranger hovering outside, or feel trapped as the other pet investigates his or her arrival.

5. Offer a safe haven

The cat, whether a new arrival or current resident, should have a separate refuge of her own for at least a few days or a week, preferably in a room with a door or behind a pet gate. This area should be off-limits to the dog. Place a litter box, food and water, scratching post, toys and bed in this room. Your cat will feel more secure knowing she can get away from the unfamiliar experience of getting to know a dog. Don’t allow your canine to linger outside the room, as his presence will stress the cat and defeat the purpose of the separate space.

6. Mix scents with sensibility

Animals get to know one another through scent, not face-to-face meetings. Even before they see each other, you can help both pets become familiar with each other’s scent. Gently rub a T-shirt, sock, towel or washcloth over the dog, and place it near the cat’s food dish or bed. After a few days, rub the item with the dog’s scent over the cat, mingling their scents. Reverse the procedure for your dog. By offering both access to each other’s scents, you’ll make their initial meeting less stressful, as each pet will know that this other critter is not a total stranger.

7. Provide litter privacy please

Your cat’s litter box should always be in a spot where the dog cannot get at it. Invasion of her litter box will stress her out. If the dog interferes with the cat while she is doing her business, she may abandon the box and soil elsewhere in your home, where she feels less threatened.
Dogs have a disgusting habit of — ewww alert here — snacking on the contents of a cat’s litter box which they actually find very tasty (a very good reason never to kiss your dog or let him lick your face). The simplest solution to stopping this is to place the litter box where the cat can access it but the dog can’t, such as inside a space too small for the dog to enter. Or consider a covered litter box that gives the cat privacy but prevents the dog from getting in. Because cats can navigate in darkness while dogs can’t, placing the litter box in a darkened room may also work.

8. Keep cat claws in trim

If the cat feels threatened or stressed, she may react and injure the dog with her primary weapon: her claws. Therefore, those claws should be trimmed to ensure that a casual swipe of the paw — an instinctive, harmless move if her claws are sheathed — won’t be disastrous for your dog, especially during their early meetings.
Declawing your cat is not a good idea. She will feel, and be, defenseless around a dog, not to mention this is a painful procedure. If you feel that even trimmed claws are not safe enough, consider nail caps, which coat the cat’s claws with blunt endings, but keep the claws intact. These vinyl coverings, attached with a nontoxic adhesive, last about four to six weeks, while the cat’s claws grow out, and do not interfere with her usual extension and retraction of her claws.

9. Offer separate dining spots

Each pet should be able to eat undisturbed by the other, so set up individual feeding stations. You may want to serve the cat’s meals on an elevated surface such as a counter-top or windowsill to prevent the dog from wolfing down her food as well as his own. In addition to allowing each pet to dine in peace, “separate tables” ensure that each will eat his or her own food. Cat and dog food are not nutritionally interchangeable. While most cats have zero interest in Fido’s menu, dogs find the higher protein and fat content of cat food very appetizing. Regular cat food consumption can result in a nutritional imbalance and weight gain for dogs.

10. Hope for bffs but settle for nodding acquaintances

You may wish for the movie version of inseparable pals, but doggy devotion and kitty cordiality cannot be pushed — and animals won’t fake affection. Each brings his or her own quirks, habits and likes to the relationship. But by ensuring that your dog is well-trained in obedience, and giving the cat a high-up perch, such as a cat tree, you can create an atmosphere where friendship can blossom. The two may eventually accept one another, with minimal interaction but no animosity, or they may develop a genuine fondness for each other. If they’re both snuggling and shedding together on your bedspread, you’ll know they’ve teamed up to rule your home and heart.
 

Oregon Veterinary Specialty Hospital (OVSH) has been serving the Portland and Beaverton area community since 1979. Drs. Steven F. Skinner (Neurology, Neurosurgery) and Robert T. Franklin (Internal medicine.) We welcome referrals from veterinarians all over the Pacific Northwest. Our goal is to help your pet regain health and live a long and happy life.

Oregon Veterinary Specialty Hospital

Address
9339 SW Beaverton Hillsdale Hwy,
Beaverton, OR 97005.
Phone: 503.292.3001
Fax: 503.292.6808
Email: info@ovshosp.com

Summer heat can be dangerous for your pets!

Story by: Trisha Gedon Original Link
Summer is in full swing, and with it comes many opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. Pet owners often like spending time outside with family, friends and pets.
A lot of animals like spending time outside, and therefore, pet owners need to take precautions to ensure their animals stay safe in the summer heat, said Dr. Laura Nafe, assistant professor of small animal internal medicine at the Oklahoma State University Center for Veterinary Health Sciences.
“Just as you hydrate yourself and take precautions such as applying sunscreen and staying cool in the heat, it’s vital to keep a close eye on your pet when spending time outdoors, especially on a hot, sunny day,” Nafe said.
Dogs do not sweat like humans. Instead, they cool themselves primarily by panting. Excessive panting indicates your pet is overheated. Dogs also will seek shade to help cool themselves in the heat of the summer, and they enjoy a nice, cool breeze just like the rest of us.
“If you’re out for a walk or playing in the yard and your dog stops to sit or lie down, he is telling you that he is unable to keep cool enough for the activity,” she said. “A dog’s gums can be a good indicator of being overheated. Gums often appear more red early on when an animal is overheated, and become more pale if the dog is excessively overheated. In addition, a dog’s gums may be dry or sticky if the animal is not staying adequately hydrated.”
If you are spending time at a pond or lake with your dog, do not assume your pet will drink water from that source. Always bring water and a bowl with you and try to keep the water cool if possible. Your dog is likely accustomed to and prefers city water.
Dogs often love to travel in the car with you. Unfortunately, one of the most life-threatening mistakes people can make is to leave a pet in a vehicle in hot weather.
“Never, ever leave your dog in the car, even with the windows open. Cars heat up very quickly. As an example, on an 80-degree day, a car can heat up to 110 degrees in approximately 15 minutes,” Nafe said. “We’re well beyond the 80 degree days at this point in the summer, so extra precaution is necessary.”
Because dogs pant to keep themselves cool, taking in the hot air inside a vehicle has little cooling effect, and the animal will quickly overheat. Your pet may overheat and develop signs of heatstroke even after a few minutes spent in a sweltering car. As much as you enjoy your pet’s company, and as much as the pet enjoys a ride in the car, it is better to leave your pet at home on hot days.
Pet owners who enjoy going for a walk or run with their dog must remember asphalt gets very hot during the summer—hot enough to burn the pads on a dog’s foot. Before taking your dog for a walk, check the ground for hotness with one of your hands or bare feet. If you cannot keep your hand or foot on the ground for more than three seconds, it is certainly too hot for an animal. During the hot summer months, consider going on short walks early in the morning or later in the evening when the temperature is more bearable.
“Dogs who are older, overweight, have a thick coat, or have a pushed-in nose, such as bulldogs and pugs, are at increased risk of overheating,” she said. “It’s always a good idea to bring water for both you and your pet.”
Keeping your dog hydrated is essential to good health and is especially important during the summer months. If your dog is inside during the day, make sure it has fresh, cool water that remains in a shaded spot throughout the day, since sun coming through a window can heat a bowl of water. Most dogs will not drink hot water no matter how thirsty they are.
If your dog stays outside during the day, make sure the water bowl is in a place where it cannot be tipped over. Water bowls can be tipped over by dogs trying to make a cool spot to lie down. If possible, give your dog fresh, clean water several times throughout the day.
“Freeze containers of water to put in your pet’s outdoor water bowl,” Nafe said. “This will help ensure your furry friend’s water stays cooler for a longer period of time.”
Also, make sure to provide your pup with a shady area to get out of the sun. A small kiddie pool is a great way to provide a fun cooling-off spot where your dog can play.
“Despite all your precautions, your dog may still show signs of heat stress or heat stroke. Signs of heat stroke include heavy panting that does not resolve as the pet rests, increasing distress, a tongue color that is dark red to almost purple, weakness or collapse, hyper-salivation, vomiting and labored breathing,” Nafe said. “If you suspect a dog or cat is suffering from heat stroke, move him to a cooler environment immediately and apply cool water to the abdomen, ears and foot pads.”
Do not pour ice water over the whole animal, submerge your pet in a tub of cold water, or cover it in a cold, wet blanket, as these all may result in cooling your animal too quickly and decreasing blood flow to important areas. Once stable, get him to a veterinarian as quickly as possible, even if he seems to be cooling down and his temperature seems normal. Heat can cause internal damage to organs that is not obvious from the outside.
Keeping your dog well-groomed is another way to reduce the risk of heat stress and help keep the animal more comfortable in the summer heat. A natural coat that has been groomed offers protection from sunburn and acts as cooling insulation. Shaving your dog’s coat will take away that protection.
“Remember, your pet can’t tell you in words when something is wrong. As responsible pet owners, it’s your job to protect and provide for your pet,” she said. “If you’re feeling uncomfortably warm, it’s a sure bet your dog is, too.”


Oregon Veterinary Specialty Hospital (OVSH) has been serving the Portland and Beaverton area community since 1979. Drs. Steven F. Skinner (Neurology, Neurosurgery) and Robert T. Franklin (Internal medicine.) We welcome referrals from veterinarians all over the Pacific Northwest. Our goal is to help your pet regain health and live a long and happy life.

Oregon Veterinary Specialty Hospital

Address
9339 SW Beaverton Hillsdale Hwy,
Beaverton, OR 97005.
Phone: 503.292.3001
Fax: 503.292.6808
Email: info@ovshosp.com