Posts Tagged ‘dogs’

Vomiting in Dogs

September 1st, 2011

vomiting in dogsDogs vomit. A lot. But even more than the number of times your dogs has vomited, so is the long list of causes of vomiting in dogs.

This seemingly endless list is broken down into two relatively simple categories.

Regurgitation and actual vomiting.

Sometimes after a dog eats, the food stays in the esophagus and doesn’t make it all the way to the stomach. This can happen for a number of reasons, from a mass to a hernia or even an enlarged heart. Any cause results in the same thing though: food accumulates in the esophagus until it is overloaded, and the it goes right back out of the dog’s mouth, usually in tubular shape. It isn’t always immediate, and can occur up to 24 hours after the dog ate, so don’t rule it out as quickly as you might think. Also, the longer the food stays in the esophagus, the more digested it will appear.

Remember, vomiting in dogs is a cause of a disease or ailment, not the disease itself. If you would like personalized help for vomiting in your dog, or don’t know if you should be concerned, you can ask a vet for help in the question box to the right.

If your dog did however go through the full vomiting experience (nausea, lip licking, retching, and abdominal contractions, it is likely that this is true vomiting. The most common causes of vomiting are eating inedible food objects or food that just doesn’t agree with a dog’s stomach, eating too quickly, eating too soon after exercise, motion sickness, parasites, and stress. Yes, dogs do experience stress even without a daunting mortgage payment hanging over their fuzzy heads. Read the rest of this entry »

Giardia in Dogs

July 12th, 2011

Ask a Vet About Causes of Diarrhea in Dogs | Giardia

ask a vet online, dog diarrhea, giardia in dogs

Do you have a dog with sudden or relentless diarrhea? One of the common causes of diarrhea in dogs worldwide, indoor, or outdoor, big dog or teacup princess is caused by a single celled protozoan parasite called Giardia. Giardiasis is an acute or chronic gastrointestinal (GI) tract disease. It is characterized by diarrhea and weight loss in both dogs and cats.

Wondering what could be the cause of your pet’s diarrhea?  Ask a vet online now to find out what could be going on.

Giardia may infect dogs and cats. Some types of Giardia can also infect humans. Transmission is by the fecal-oral route, which means that the parasite is swallowed in food and water contaminated with feces. Note, your pet doesn’t have to eat feces to get the parasite. Usually the transmission is through contaminated water–think puddles, lakes, streams, or water that isn’t suited for drinking in some countries.

Giardia in dogs can be asymptomatic, but when signs are present, the most common one is diarrhea that results in the passage of large volumes of watery feces–think cow patty consistency. It has a distinct odor to it as well, one that I have become all too familiar with after being in veterinary medicine for over a decade. The color of the stool usually isn’t abnormal–if you are seeing grey, green, yellow, or black, you’re probably dealing with another culprit.

giardia in dogs, ask a vet, diarrhea in dogs

Giardia

Intermittent or chronic diarrhea, weight loss, decreased appetite, and vomiting occur less often. Rarely, acute or chronic large-bowel diarrhea may develop, with increased frequency and straining to defecate and the presence of mucus and red blood in the feces.

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Beat the heat with vet tips for a safe summer

July 9th, 2011

summer pet tips, ask a vet, ask the vet, heatstroke in pets

July is here, and along with it the official dog days of summer. Keep your pets safe during this heated season with these easy tips.

Outdoor smarts.

Dogs and cats can become dehydrated quickly, so give your pets plenty of water when they are outdoors, even if they are only out for a short period. Shady places are important so Fido can escape the sun when the temperature rises. In addition, don’t let your pet linger on hot asphalt. Lying on a hot surface cause your pet’s temp to quickly soar, and may even burn them. Of course our readers know to never leave your animals alone in a parked vehicle, but be sure to keep an eye out for careless dumb dumbs that do. Don’t forget–heatstroke can be fatal.

heatstroke in dogs, signs of overheated cat, overheated dog

Heatstroke is NOT this obvious.

Know how to tell if your pet is overheated.

The signs of heatstroke include excessive panting, difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, seizures, and an elevated body temperature of over 104 degrees, and even blue or bright red gums. Don’t forget—short-faced or stub-nosed breeds like pugs are more susceptible to overheating as they can’t pant as effectively. Also at risk are overweight pets, or those with concurrent illnesses, espeically heart or lung in origin.

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Overheating in Dogs

May 28th, 2011

heat stroke in dogs, online vet reviewsAs the weather warms up, it is important to brush up on your knowledge of heat stroke in pets.

Signs that your dog is overheated

Panting is one of the most early and common signs, followed by the dog appearing dull or disoriented. Breathing is usually fast and noisy. They may even collapse or convulse. Their gums may either be bright red or blue. Vomiting, diarrhea, and internal bleeding (manifesting as red/purple spots on the gums, skin, urine, or feces) may occur. Sudden death from cardiac arrhythmias is even a possibility.

If your dog is just panting and you aren’t sure if they are in danger for overheating, you can attempt to take their temperature. Heat stroke usually occurs at a temperature of 104 F and over . Keep in mind, rectal temperatures are the most accurate way to take your dog’s temperature, however, if they have stool in their rectum, it will be artificially lowered.

What should you do if you suspect your dog is overheated?

Grab your dog, wet him or her with cool tap water, and head to the veterinarian ASAP! Wrap your dog in a wet towel on the way to the hospital, as lowering the temperature (slowly, not rapidly) is of crucial and timely importance. Cool tap water, not ice, should be used. If you dog shows interest in drinking water, allow them by all means. If you dog is unconscious, make sure no water can get up their nose or mouth. Call your vet en route, so they can have a team prepared to act quickly! Read the rest of this entry »

Sticks, stones, and other mysterious things your dog eats

April 21st, 2011

ask a vet, pica, why dogs eat rocks, why dogs eat paper

Word's most expensive dog snack

Ask the vet why your dog eats things that aren’t food

Many dog owners have this problem:  your dog eats the most bizarre things.  Guest what?  Veterinary medicine has a term for it and a diagnosis even.

The consumption of nonfood items is called pica. Although pica can be a sign that a dog’s diet is lacking in nutrition, pica often occurs in puppies and young dogs as a result of boredom.

Puppies eat all kinds of objects, and they tend to explore their world with their mouths. Although we aren’t quite sure why puppies do this, many puppies tend to chew and eat a variety of inedible objects, from rocks to plastic bags and toys, clothing, and even pieces of wood. Most puppies grow out of this behavior as the morph into adult dogs, with only the mildest of discouragement from their owners.

ask a vet why my dog eats grassMany adult dogs that eat inedible objects may do so out of destructive chewing. This is different from pica, in that destructive chewing starts off as just that, chewing. Most doggy chewing doesn’t lead to actual swallowing of the object, but inevitably your dog may swallow bits and pieces. Dogs have an ever-impressive ability to swallow something that is in the back of their mouths without second thought.

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Puppy Love

April 6th, 2011

Hump day is hard enough, right?  Here’s a video to get you smiling through the rest of the week.

If you have any questions about your pet or have a question to ask a vet , we are on call for you 24/7.

Online Vet Reviews Spring Cleaning Tips to keep your pets safe

April 5th, 2011

ask a vet, online vetAsk a Vet

Though the mercury isn’t yet rising in our part of the world, spring time is here, and for many of us, a thorough spring cleaning is in order.

As you clean out your medicine cabinets and drawers, please remember that many pets often find pills tasty little treats (dogs) or toys to bat around on the floor and then ingest (cats).

One of the most common types of accidental ingestions that we see as VetLIVE veterinarians is pets that have gotten into medications. While many human drugs can be safely prescribed for dogs or cats, overdoses can be dangerous or deadly.

So which drugs are the common ones that pets get into? Listed below are some of the most common drugs pet owners report to us that their pets got into.

1. Aspirin. Did you know that giving a puppy even one baby aspirin can be fatal? Toxic quantities of aspirin can adversely affect all organs of your pet, including impaired blood clotting, vomiting and diarrhea, acute kidney failure, and even seizures.

2. Ibuprofen (or many similar drugs such as Aleve). For dogs, ibuprofen can easily exceed toxic levels. The most common cause of ibuprofen toxicity is a well-meaning owner who tries to alleviate pain in their dog by giving a dose he thinks is adequate or reasonable without knowing the toxic dose. The initial toxic effect is bleeding stomach ulcers. In addition to ulcers, increasing doses of ibuprofen eventually lead to kidney failure and, if left untreated, can be fatal.

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Household Substances Can Be Dangerous Not Only to Your Pet, But Also to Your Relationship

March 23rd, 2011
The entertaining chronicles of life as a veterinarian

It was several years ago but I remember that night well.  It was 3 AM on a Saturday morning when I was handed a chart for a three-year-old snorting Bulldog name Bennie that was having problems eating and holding down his chow. The confident rascal was known to eat garbage and the owners, a young bickering couple, reported that he had been left unattended the night before and had made a mess of the apartment.Cute dog chewing slipper

The x-ray showed something large in his stomach displacing food that in all probability was not going to pass. I showed the couple the x-rays and recommended removal through the use of an endoscopic camera. They couldn’t afford that so I told them that there was a small chance that if I made him vomit, I mean, really vomit, that the object may come out the way it came in. They agreed, so I administered the drug and waited.

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World Vets Japan Disaster Relief

March 17th, 2011

vets, sick petsOne of our favorite charities is in need of YOUR support. The first team of people from World Vets has arrived in Japan and have met up with Animal Friends Niigata . World Vets has been monitoring the situation in Japan with regards to the impact of the earthquake and tsunami that has recently hit the island nation. They are currently working to coordinate relief efforts for the animal victims affected by these unfortunate disasters. In addition, they have made contact with US Army veterinary associates stationed in Japan as well as Japan based animal charities and World Vets veterinary volunteers who remain on standby.

Your donations will help provide vet supplies and vet teams where they need help the most.
Also, if anyone in Japan or with connections to someone in Japan has a large space available (warehouse, modular building, large enclosures, etc.) where animals could be sheltered during this crisis, please either comment below or on the facebook page of World Vets, whichever is the easiest. We will make sure their CEO Dr. Cathy King gets the message.

They are working with several local resuce groups in Japan, and there is a need for additional space for animals that are being rescued (in the areas of Hikone, Shiga, and Niigata). Read the rest of this entry »

Pet Adoption Success Stories

March 14th, 2011

online vet reviews, online vet, ask a vetBaxter, the search and rescue canine

It was February 2006 when Baxter, a loveable and highly intelligent Golden Retriever was discovered by a member of a Search Dog Foundation in California. He was adopted and soon began training. He earned his canine search and rescue certification in 2007, and for years now Baxter and his handler Gary Durian have been traveling across the world to provide relief to those when disaster strikes.

Today, with Japan being under a national state of emergency, canines, firefighters, and paramedics are on their way. Baxter and his canine handler are one of many canine and human teams that arrived this past weekend in Japan to look for survivors buried underneath the rubble and debris as a result of the 8.9 magnitude earthquake and tsunami that ravaged the country last Friday. Officials estimate over 1,000 people may have lost their lives.

While your adopted pooch certainly doesn’t have to be a search and rescue star to be the hero of your life, it is important to remember that shelter and rescue pets have the full potential of pets from breeders, or worse, mills. Read the rest of this entry »