Paws for Thought

Poochie Smoochie

Posted by on Jun 18, 2009 in Eyes, Ears & Teeth, Health & Wellness, Paws for Thought | 0 comments

Does Your Pooch Have Smoochable Breath? I think I hear a resounding “NO” screaming through the page from many of my readers out there. Even if your dog’s breath is minty fresh, pet oral hygiene should be taken seriously and monitored continuously. This will lead to not only pleasant breathe but could extend the life of your pet. How do you know if your pet’s dental health is less than pearly white? The first indicator is bad breath. I am not talking about typical doggie breath…but a can’t stand to be around you….odor that makes your pooches smooches something to be avoided. Also, discolored teeth, mouth pain, excessive drooling, bleeding gums or loss of appetite are all signs. As with humans, pets will build tartar and plaque if their teeth go uncared for. The build up of these two culprits may lead to gingivitis and then periodontal disease (gum disease). Gingivitis is treatable but Periodontal disease is not. It can be stopped and then managed by the proper professional treatment. You definitely do not want your dog or cat to get to this point. Poor dental hygiene can also lead to other problems such as Oro-Nasal Fistulas, Feline Odontoclastis Resorptive Lesions and finally Kidney, Liver or Heart Disease. The latter is life threatening and can lead to the death of the pet. It occurs by the bacteria gaining access to the blood stream through the compromised gums. Bacteria-laden plaque can actually lodge in the heart valves, liver, kidney and lungs. You will be happy to know that there are easy solutions to get you back on the road to pleasant doggie kisses. 1. Brusha Brusha Brusha- Yes, brush your pet’s teeth at least once a week. Use a special pet toothbrush or finger brush and pet toothpaste. Never use human toothpaste or baking soda. Not pet friendly. 2. H2O additives- There are many all natural products out there that you simply add to your pet’s water. So, as they drink throughout the day they are also cleaning their teeth. Many of my customers have tried this and have had wonderful results. A few great products are made by Triple Pet and Ark Naturals., 3. Mouth Sprays and Gels- If a toothbrush won’t work, an easier way may be to spray an all natural cleanser in the pet’s mouth or rub a gel on the teeth and gums with your finger. The PetZLife oral care gel and spray work wonders. These products are made with Grapefruit seed extract, Grape seed extract, Thyme oil, Neem oil, Rosemary oil, and Peppermint oil. This one is easy and highly recommended! 4. Rope toys and Chew Toys- Believe it or not play time can be a great time to get a bit of teeth cleaning in without your pet realizing it! While your dog is doing double duty as he earnestly chews his rope bone. 5. All Natural Dental Treats and Bones- Make sure that the dental treat you choose is highly digestible and made of all naturally products. These treats work but just make sure they will not lodge in your pet’s tummy or intestinal track. Flossie tendons by Merrick are wonderful as they help clean in between teeth. They are 100% beef tendon and digestible. Raw bones are great cleaners as well. Make sure the bones you feed your dog are either raw or slow roasted. Bones in any other form may splinter and cause harm to your pet. 6. Yearly Vet Cleanings- the hope is that by doing a few of the above, you can avoid as many...

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Get Ready for Hurricane Season!

Posted by on Jun 16, 2009 in Environment, Paws for Thought, Safety | 0 comments

Hurricane Season is officially upon us and many are preparing their homes and their families for a potential storm. What about your pet? Do you have a plan for your four legged family members? To safely flee the scene with Fido in tow: • Know where you will go. You can’t leave your pet behind, because even if they do survive the storm they could escape through a broken window, door, etc. They could get lost or harmed by predators and unsanitary conditions. A few helpful pet travel sites I found are:, and • Get your pet an i.d. tag or better yet micro-chipped. Micro-chipping can be done at your veterinarian’s office or you can oftentimes find low cost micro-chip clinics around your area.  I personally love TAGG, a pet GPS tracking device, that lets you know where your pet is at all times. • Have a pet carrier handy to transport your pet easily. For this situation, a simple plastic or rubber pet carrier will be ideal. Bring a crate along that offers your pet ample room to stand up, turn around and lay down. • Take up-to-date photos of your pet from all sides. Take these with you along with pet meds, i.d. and ownership papers. • Create Pet Disaster Kit: this should include: meds, medical records, collar, leash, food/water dishes, 14 day supply of food and H2O, manual can opener, blanket, toy, cleanser and disinfectant to handle wastes. Make sure to bring your waste pick up bags. Canned and freeze dried pet foods are good to always have on hand this season. • Create Pet Medical Emergency Kit include tweezers; scissors; tape, gauze pads and a roll of gauze to clean and cover injuries; an antiseptic solution for cleansing wounds; alcohol pads to clean scissors, tweezers and hands; antibiotic ointment; buffered aspirin for pain and inflammation and Benedryl to reduce allergic reactions to insect bites; and a thermometer (the normal temperature in dogs and cats is between 101 to 102 degrees). Early preparation is key! Be safe this...

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