Posts Tagged ‘Interesting Facts’

Home Dog Boarding Site Joins with VetLIVE

November 7th, 2012

We Are Pleased to Announce That Home Dog Boarding Site Partners With VetLIVE and are partners

Planning a trip without your dog can often be stressful, but with, making arrangements just became easier. provides a unique alternative to traditional kennels by allowing your dog to stay in a loving home with someone just like you. Since 2011 the Rover community has expanded to thousands of cities across the U.S., and with more than 70,000 members it makes finding the perfect dog sitter a snap.

As a dog-care industry leader, was founded on the commitment to provide peace of mind for owners, and safety for dogs. Unlike caged kennel facilities, allows sitters to care for dogs in their own home as well as the dog’s home; wherever the dog will be most comfortable!

“Cages can’t cuddle. We believe people feel much more at ease knowing that their dogs are receiving real love, in real homes when they are away” explains Aaron Easterly, CEO at “A significant goal of is to give pet owners true peace of mind while their dog is under the care of one of our member-sitters.”

In-home dog care has many benefits for the dog. The stress of a new environment such as a kennel can be very overwhelming for a dog in addition to any separation anxiety they may be experiencing. The most important benefit of in-home boarding is the dogs safety, happiness and parent’s peace of mind.

Home Dog Boarding

Boarding kennels can be very busy which may be distracting to caretakers at the facility. The caretaker may not have the appropriate time to spend with each dog to address its needs, provide the exercise it needs and make sure it is as comfortable as possible. While your dog is with an in-home sitter, they are are treated like the sitter’s own dog in an environment they are completely familiar with. To ease any worries an owner may have, has an insurance and satisfaction guarantee. “We have a community of sitters who love dogs and are committed to the health, safety and well-being of those in their care, so our insurance option just enables us to meet their goal and ours,” says Easterly. A new added bonus is our new partnership which gives members access to 24/7 vet support. helps their members create bark-worthy profiles by encouraging them to include photos, credentials, past and current experience, home details and other relevant information. Badges on sitter profiles indicate certifications such as CPR and First Aid. Profiles allow pet owners to learn about their potential sitter and to help them feel at ease about the person they are contacting. makes offering your pet sitting services easy and simple. Being a sitter is a great way to earn money while doing something you love – caring for dogs!

Perhaps the best part about being a Rover sitter is the opportunity to help the dog community through’s Sit a Dog, Save a LifeTM program, which enables sitters to donate a portion of their dog-sitting proceeds to participating charities. encourages a meet-n-greet with the sitter before the stay, so dogs and owners feel comfortable with the choice. Before the stay, owners receive an itinerary with important information such as feeding instructions and Veterinary care details. During the time of care, sitters and owners can take advantage of the Rover mobile app to check-in, share photos and log activities like walks or trips to the park.

We are beyond thrilled for our new partnership with and hope you utilize their services the next time you travel without your pet! Check out for more information.

Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Dr. Laci Schaible

Pet Nutrition: How to read a pet food label 101 by your online vet

November 17th, 2011

pet food label, pet nutrition, ask a vetPart One: Ask the vet

Choosing proper pet nutrition is one of the most important things that you as the pet parent can do to lengthen the healthy time that you and your pet will share together. After the melamine recall of 2007, pet owners internationally are taking a more active interest in pet nutrition.

Reading a pet food label can be quite the daunting task, but with a small amount of education, you can arm yourself with the information to make an informed decision.

We’ll start at the beginning. There are a few basics required to be on pet food labels. The manufacturer’s name, brand, and product, as well as what species the food is designated for, the net weight of the product, and a pet nutrition statement indicating if the food is for a juvenile, adult, etc. Not too many companies skip this basic info, and if they do, consider yourself warned.

Do you need to ask a vet about pet nutrition?  We provide online vet nutrition consultations, and you can get started by typing your question in the box to the right.

Here’s where it gets interesting.  The next broad area of the label to make sense of is defining what the food is labeled as.

The first group is the food that is labeled as 100% something, be it 100% beef, chicken,

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buffalo, you name it. If a pet food label says this, then it means that the product must be 95% or more of that particular food product they are claiming to be.

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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 »

Spay and Neuter Clinic Under Political Attack

July 23rd, 2011
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Click picture above to learn more.

While the phrase “spay and neuter your pets” is not new to anyone’s ears, there are still between 4-5 million animals that are euthanized each year across America. That number is down drastically from previous decades, when over 20 million dogs and cats were killed in U.S. Shelters. While countless people help spread this message, it really boils down to pet owners taking their pets to the vet to have the surgeries performed, and having the money to pay the bill.

While it shouldn’t be about politics, sometimes it is. Remind Alabama’s State Board it’s about the animals, and please take a moment to sign the petition and stay up to date HERE.

Low cost spay and neuter clinics have made a world of difference to our nation’s dog and cat overpopulation problem. Many vet hospitals charge an arm and a leg to spay and neuter a pet, and many of us rely on these clinics, especially in today’s economic condition. This is a good thing for people and the pets, right?

Surprisingly enough (and disappointingly) the Alabama State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners is actively trying to shut down local spay/neuter clinics. Their claim? The spay/neuter clinic is in violation of Alabama code because it isn’t owned by a veterinarian. 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


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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Blurring the definition of Pets

June 25th, 2011

Life happens in threes, or so they say, and it certainly has been true in our lives lately. Between a series of family emergencies and last minute flights cross-counntry, this little blog and our Twitter presence have been neglected. Now that things seem to have settled (fingers crossed), I wanted to share something from my recent trip to my mother in Texas.

I have treated tarantulas, hermit crabs, and the occassional chipmunk. I am rather difficult to surprise when it comes to what sick pet will enter the exam room. I was a bit stunned to see a particular animal, actually about a baker’s dozen of them, enclosed in an area no larger than 1 acre while I was on a jog while in the Lone Star State.

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It’s not the craziest pet animal I’ve heard of, but these pet deer looked less than happy.  I asked my mother about it, and she implied that neighbors were very upset about it, including a nearby police officer, but there was apparantly nothing that could legally be done about it. The owners claimed the deer were pets and the legal line was drawn that protected the animals. Read the rest of this entry »

Why do dogs eat grass?

February 21st, 2011

ask a vet, online vet, why do dogs eat grass

It’s a question I’ve heard more times than I can remember, and yes, as a dog owner, I too have seen my own dogs (and cats) go outside for a munch of the green stuff, chow down, and often times throw it right back out.

Dogs too often will seek out a natural remedy for their GI ailments, be it if their tummy is upset or if they are feeling a bit bloated and gassy. Typically they will nibble just a bit, but some dogs will graze more.

So why do dogs eat grass and then throw it up?

When they eat the blades of grass, it is believed the tiny “hairs” on the blade tickle the esophagus and stomach as they go do. This then often causes the dog to vomit, which may be just what the doctor ordered if something they ate is upsetting their tummy.

Many household and landscaping plants are poisonous to dogs, and dogs are no better botanists than their people, so make sure they don’t have access to the dangerous herbage.

Typically, dogs will chew and graze more when they are feeling well. The more they chew the grass, the more the blade becomes saturated with saliva, and in becoming so, it is less “tickly” as they swallow. These dogs may just be craving some roughage in their diet, or may find the texture appealing.

Alternatively, the quicker they gulp it down, the more likely they are to throw it right back up.

So, why do dogs find grass appealing?

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Vaccine Fine Print (Not Another Argument)

February 17th, 2011

ask a vet, online vet, online vet reviews, dog vaccinesWhile many pet owners are becoming more concerned about which vaccines they should let their vet give their pets (and you can read our take on that here) , one message they may not be clear on when they leave the vet’s office is.

Just because your new puppy got his first vaccines does not mean he is protected.

We have excellent vaccines available in veterinary medicine to help protect against many infectious diseases.

But they take time to work.

There is a period before a puppy or kitten reaches 16 weeks of age where their immune system switches from antibodies from the mother and their own. During this switchover, they essentially have no protection and are at risk for serious illness.

This is nothing to make light of. Many states have recently reported an increase of both canine parvovirus, as well as deadly distemper. Both diseases have a great vaccine, but unfortunately not every dog is vaccinated and many pets suffer because of it.

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Paws on Pads: iPad Proves Popular with Pets

January 10th, 2011

It’s been less than one year since Apple announced the arrival of the upcoming arrival of the iPad, and yet it seems like it’s been in our lives forever.

What is on your pet’s wishlist:  Apple products or the more traditional edible pet-treat variety?

Dr. Jed joined team Apple about six years ago when he purchased a MacBook with the points he had earned on his business card for opening costs of his hospital. This past November, again those points paid off as the iPad entered our lives.

online vet, ask a vet, my cat is sick, is my cat sick, my dog is sick, online vet advice, vet questionsApple products are taking over the world with their addictive crack-like properties. But wait! It appears that more than humans are susceptible to this addiction.

An iPad game for cats? That’s hardly the half of it. There are currently over 940 cat-related applications available for the iPad, which is ironic since the tablet doesn’t even come with a mouse. From butterfly games, to angry birds (a favorite of Dr. Jed’s), to string games, even a musical piano.

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Dogs on Airplanes: A Hazard for the Airline Passengers or the Dog?

December 7th, 2010

ask a vet a question, pet health problems, dog skin issuesPart One

As you may have seen on the news, a 12 pound Manchester terrier recently bit two people on an airplane en route from Newark to Phoenix. Though the bites were not serious, the pilot landed the plane in Pittsburgh as a precaution.

Granted, I have no idea how extensive the wounds were, but in my opinion, this pilot likely landed the plane to calm the passengers, not because the dog was posing an actual threat.

Fear-biting is believed to be the number one cause of dog bites sustained by people. People that are unfamiliar or uneducated in dog behaviour language will continue to be bitten everywhere they act on ignorance—the dog park, doggie day care, dog shows, or yes, even a plane.

Why, you say? I have been on planes where passengers became severly ill, more so than a dog bite—such as when Dr. Jed herniated a disc in his spine on our
L-O-O-O-O-O-O-O-N-G flight to SE Asia sitting in tiny seats engineered for the shorter Asian flying population (no joke).

Want further reason that the airline was not actually concerned about the safety of their passengers and was merely looking to diffuse the situation? The woman and her dog were indeed asked to not board the plane again when it re-embarked for it’s original destination.

The catch?  The woman and her viscious dog were allowed to board another plane shortly after.

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Is this the future of air travel? I think not.

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