Posts Tagged ‘Interesting Cases’

“Tasters” and Strange Exam Room Behavior

November 29th, 2010
Some pet owners cross the line to find themselves in embarrassing situations

Labradore retriever pet health questions

Photo by Emildom

Pet owners are a curious bunch, myself included.  I am always amazed at our cautious nature.  Even though their vet tells them to feed x, or give medicine y, you never really know if they are actually going to do z.  But the strangest precautionary pet owners are the “tasters.”  Tasting your dog’s gourmet Honest Kitchen dog food is one thing, but sometimes the pet owners I meet in this profession really make me wonder.

Any various forms of pet owners who can not help themselves but to insert pet medications, pet products, or pet food into their mouths.

Let me introduce you to Cocoa and her taster pet parent. Cocoa was a very rambunctious sweet lab. But she had a problem with furniture.  She really liked to change its aesthetic design– as in, rip it apart. Due to the fact that behavioral modification takes time and effort, we needed a short term solution while we worked towards long-term training, besides locking her up in a crate.

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Organic: Do you Know What it Really Means?

November 19th, 2010

organic seal, USDA organic seal, organic food, organic, USDAThey are everywhere. On your menu, on the shelves of wine stores, their own section at the supermarket, even their own supermarket. As I sit here drinking my organic milk—under the direct recommendation of someone whose family owns and operates a dairy farm–I wonder what information the public is receiving.

So what does the organic label mean? It means the food product has been made in accordance with the standards set by the National Organic Standards Board. For meat, these standards have to do with housing, feed, and health-care. Read the rest of this entry »

Win a Copy of “A Dog’s Purpose” by W. Bruce Cameron

November 14th, 2010
Freebies, Prizes, and Fun!

gift, present

A heart-warming story that at times makes you laugh, and other times makes you cry.

Win a copy of the heart-warming story told through a dog’s eyes SIGNED BY THE AUTHOR HIMSELF!

In honor of National Shelter Appreciation Week, this book is a sweet and touching reminder of why adopting, and not buying is so important.

A Dog’s Purpose - By W. Bruce Cameron – A Novel for Humans – tells the story of a dog who finds himself reincarnated and decides there must be a reason, a purpose he must fulfill, and until he does so, he’ll continue to be reborn.

a dog's purpose book

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How can you tell if a dog is a fighter or just got in a fight? It can be a dangerous undertaking for all involved. Part II

November 14th, 2010

Now back to inner city rescues and practices:

In an inner city practice or rescue, it is often hard to tell which pit bulls were attacked in a fighting ring and which were attacked by accident.  I mean, a lot of these fighters are not pros.  Many of them adopt these dogs and don’t pay thousands for pedigree fighters.  Others just “adopt” them or steal them off the streets or from families.  And it is only fair to report if you have absolutely enough evidence to do so.

Cute Pit Bull Terrier

Here are the signs I looked for:

The People:

  1. Tried to pay cash in the room and didn’t want a record of it
  2. Arrives with a large group of friends
  3. Asked for extra pain meds, antibiotics, vitamins, supply catalogs, extra bandages, ointment, etc.
  4. Catch them going through the drawers Read the rest of this entry »

When Bloody Diarrhea Gets Life-Threatening

November 14th, 2010
toy poodleSince I have been in poop mode, writing about diarrhea on Dawg Business, I wanted to share some information with you on a lesser known cause of life-threatening cause of acute diarrhea.

I hadn’t been out of vet school very long when I met Casper, a 2 year old toy poodle, and he is a text-book example of a mysterious and not  well-understood condition, known as Hemorrhagic Gastroenteritis.

Casper’s mom brought him in to the hospital, complete with diaper. It was late in the night, and she debated about bringing him in, but her decision to do so saved his life.

Casper was listless, badly dehydrated, and when I touched his gums to evaluate how quickly they filled back with color, the fill time was over 3 seconds. This is BAD NEWS in the veterinary world.

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How can you tell if a dog is a fighter or just got in a fight? It can be a dangerous undertaking for all involved. Part I of II

November 14th, 2010

Reporting dog fighting can be really confusing and dangerous for an inner city vet.  Here is an article about how I handled it in inner city Philadelphia.

Dog fighting is a felony in all fifty States and veterinarians are mandated reporters of animal cruelty in many States and provided immunity for good faith reporting in other states.  But these laws are constantly changing.  All I knew was that when I was practicing in center city Philadelphia, I was not practicing in a State where I was protected or immune from civil action if I reported in error.  Not to mention, I practiced in a very dangerous neighborhood at the time, and was often terrified to do the right thing- but I did anyway. It was complicated in practice and at the shelter where I volunteered occasionally.

Dog fight

Inner city pit bulls were the main dogs that presented as the biters or bitten.  They fought with other dogs because they were not trained to do so.  For two years I had fighting dogs popping out of my exam rooms and survived it with the help of a skilled staff, muzzles, and patience.  Of course pit bulls, if properly trained like any dogs, can be great family dogs.  They can be sweet, loyal, and fun.  It’s just that the majority of bite wounds and dog attacks I saw in the poor part of center city Philadelphia were untrained pit bulls.  It was a fact.

Most of the dogs I suspected to be fighters were pit bulls, Chow Chows, Boxers, and hybrids.

Uneducated poor pet owners that shouldn’t be pet owners owned the majority of the mean pit bulls I saw.   Believe it or not, it was not uncommon for there to be accidental dog fights fights in the parking lot.  There was even an attack in a car out front.

More to follow…

Dr. Jed

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Dr. Jed Schaible VMD

This post is part of the 2010 Blogathon Fund Raising Charity Initiative.

VetLIVE is trying to raise money for National Mill Dog Rescue. National Mill Dog Rescue (NMDR) has saved over 3828 dogs and counting. At National Mill Dog Rescue, “It’s all about the dogs.” NMDR has pledged to put an end to the cruelty and evil of the commercial breeding industry, more commonly known as puppy mills. Through educating the public and through the use of their 500 volunteers, NMDR is on the cutting edge of saving mill pets and helping improve the industry. NMDR is a 501c3 nonprofit organization.

Please simply press the “Donate” button below to contribute. All size donations are accepted!

A Dog’s Purpose Signed Book Giveaway

November 13th, 2010
Freebies, Prizes, and Fun!gift, present

Win a signed copy of the heart-warming story told through a dog’s eyes.

In honor of National Shelter Appreciation Week, this book is a sweet and touching reminder of why adopting, and not buying is so important.

A Dog’s Purpose - By W. Bruce Cameron – A Novel for Humans – tells the story of a dog who finds himself reincarnated and decides there must be a reason, a purpose he must fulfill, and until he does so, he’ll continue to be reborn.

a dog's purpose book

A New York Times Bestseller!

Thanks to Tor & Forge Books and A Dog’s Purpose for supporting this cause and generously donating copies of the books.

Read the official contest rules here

Comment below and tell us how your beloved dog came into your life.

Why there are big dogs, little dogs, but just mid-sized cats | Ask The Vet

November 3rd, 2010

Dogs really get the dirty end of the stick, which by the way they love to fetch anyway.  This is due to the differing histories of dog and cat domestication.

Ask The Vet | Lion with puppy

The association between people and cats was much different than that of people and dogs.  Cats are thought to have co-inhabited people’s spaces due to the fact that human settlements had more pests such as mice and rats.  The cats were welcome as pest controllers and they still are for many clients we know.

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My pet has diarrhea? Stories from my Diary-rrhea

October 24th, 2010

Check out our first guest post at Dawg Business– a very comprehensive blog resource for dog health problems and dog wellness.  It is written by a pet owner and is easy to read while still being very informative.

The post I wrote is on doggy diarrhea– a humorous approach to a subject we are all to familiar with!

Dr. Laci AKA Dr. Poop

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Online vet, Dr. Laci Nash Schaible, DVM

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Separation Anxiety | Why Buffy (The Dog, Not The Vampire Slayer) Always Walks Backwards Through a Door

October 17th, 2010

Separation anxiety is very common in dogs.  And, the dog symptoms are very unique.  The behaviors associated with the distress of being in the absence of their pet parent or not having adequate access to their pet parent can manifest in the destruction of property, chewing, peeing, pooping, barking (and the subsequent law enforcement officer showing up at your door), and more.

Online vet talks about Separation anxiety in a Shih Tzu

It is estimated that 14% of dogs have separation anxiety in some form.  Although dogs are the main patients who usually start showing signs at the age of 12 to 36 months, cats are also affected but at a slighter older age.  My sister’s cat has separation anxiety manifesting as self-mutilation. Unfortunately, she spent a lot of money at vet offices trying to figure out why her cat chewed on her nipples before driving a far distance to have us check her out.  Her cat got very attached to her when she was at home with an illness for over a month, and when she went back to work, the separation anxiety ensued.

That is not uncommon… when a pet has exclusive access to a person and they are suddenly cut off from them, they feel abandoned, their stress increases, and they try to cope with “abnormal” behaviors – like nipple licking in my sister’s cat’s case.  Other contributing factors to separation anxiety (SA) include traumatic occurrences in the absence of their pet parents (lightning strike, a break-in, or a fire), or severe illness that decreases the pet’s ability to cope.

One of the most common misconceptions is that pets that have separation anxiety have been spoiled or have been coddled.  This has been disproved in the behavior literature.  Explain how your pet is behaving and ask a vet if your pet may have signs of separation anxiety.

Buffy, The Moonwalker

Here is an example of a dog that had acute onset of SA after a traumatic occurrence while their pet parent was not home.  Buffy is a 13-year-old Shih Tzu who was brought to my office for destroying pillows and pooping on the carpet.  Buffy never did this before, but the strangest thing was that her behavior changed after a thunderstorm and that she suddenly began to walk through the sliding door to the sun room backwards – only when leaving the sun room to go back into the living room. She also had disappeared in the basement for several hours until she was pulled out from behind the drier after a thunderstorm.

Walking backwards- I wanted to see this so the client took a video.  I should have kept that video. Turns out, after Buffy was done sunning, she would walk to the sliding door, do a 180, and then walk backwards for four feet, turn around and run.  It turns out that lightening struck while her back was turned during a lightening storm, so she had to be sure to “watch her back” and destroy things to cope. Read the rest of this entry »