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Posts tagged ‘Celebration Veterinary Hospital’

Indoor Pee Pads for Dogs

cvhThe first time I saw one I wondered about their effectiveness, but then I figured there must be something to it or there wouldn’t be a market for this product. In my research I have learned a few things, some products are superior and come highly recommended, but these pads aren’t for all dogs.

Nothing beats the great outdoors, that goes for dogs and people! These pads shouldn’t become a a solution to not going on walks, your dog needs their exercise, so if you can’t provide that for your pooch, you should pay someone to walk the dog for you or place your dog into doggy daycare.

Here are the advised uses for these pads, only use with small breed pets, elderly pets that can’t make it outside, or in winter when going outside is difficult or too cold. Having said that there are a few disclaimers about using these products. It might take a few days and accidents before the dog understands what the pee pad is for. With larger breeds, you must recognize that some dogs traditionally lift their legs to pee are probably not going to aim for the pad, meaning you will find pee possibly on your walls and around the sides of the pad.

Some dogs are messy with their business kicking up grass after they have finished peeing outside, so your dog might kick pee off the pad and onto furniture or other surfaces. Not to mention that these pads can cause confusion when training a puppy,causing the puppy to pee on carpeted areas. Our advice is just don’t lean too heavily on the pad for training purposes.

Now that number one is out of the way, have you considered what’s going to happen with number two? Unlike cats, dogs don’t tidily do their business in the same place they pee, some dogs just go where they please, and with this pee pad, they might just start pooping where ever they please in the house because you have introduced peeing in the house.

The above are just considerations to take before running out and trying a pee pad. If you still think you should buy one, do your homework, don’t just buy a generic brand form the pet store, find one that comes highly recommended. This pee pad from Doctors Foster and Smith is highly recommended amongst its users. It has an 88% approval rating. But you should find something that’s right for your dog, Amazon has an array of peed pads and fake grass to choose from, just be sure to read the reviews before making your final selection.

What Are the Spots On Your Cat’s Iris?

CVHIf you’re like me and you have an older cat, you know that your little ball of fur will possibly start to show signs of his age through illnesses, or just lack of energy. What you may not know, is that older cat’s with yellow eyes are more likely than other types to contract Melanocytoma, the spotting of the iris. The iris is the colored portion of the cat’s eye.

These spots can be brown or black and be of any size and not cause immediate harm to your pet. However, if these spots begin to change shape, grow or multiply in number, you will have to bring your cat in to see a vet immediately.

Melanocytoma is the growth of abnormal tissue in or around your act’s eye, resulting in brown or black spots. Melanosis usually affects cats 12-14 years or older, but in rare cases can affect cats as young as 6 years. Cats can live comfortably for years with this condition without ever developing more serious symptoms or complications, but you should still keep an eye on the spots and take your cat in for regular check ups with the vet. As long as these spots stay flat on the iris they are benign.

Luckily, most cases of iris melanosis do not undergo malignant change to melanoma. In fact, a cat with progressive iris melanosis is more likely to develop glaucoma from infiltration and obstruction of the drainage angle (the area in the eye where the intraocular fluid drains) than he is to develop distant metastasis.

In the event that the spots increase in number or size, or change from their flat position and begin to appear bumpy, the disease has progressed to the next stage and have most likely become malignant. That means that they have become Melanoma and are cancerous and in need of immediate treatment. If left untreated, the cancer cells from the eye can detach and become lodged elsewhere in the body, spreading the cancer to another organ.

When Melanoma is caught early the treatment can successfully remove the cancerous cells. This is accomplished through the use of a laser by a veterinary surgeon. However, in some cases complete extraction of the eye may be necessary to stop the disease form progressing (removal of the eye).

Melanosis can also be caused by corneal ulcers or trauma. It is also possible for erosion to cause dark spots in the clear portion of cat’s eyes, according to Animal Eye Care. If your cat has been engaging in play or combat with another cat, it is possible for a scratch to the eye to become infected resulting in the dark spots. It is also possible for something to become lodged underneath the eyelid slicing the cornea and resulting in this sort of infection as well.

Should you notice something under your cat’s eyelid, do not try to remove it yourself, bring your cat to a vet immediately for treatment. You can further damage your cat’s eye trying to remove particles from under their eyelids.

Infections such as conjunctivitus can also cause spots in your cat’s eye. These are defined by squinting, discharge, and local inflammation. Treatment for these viruses depend on the type of infection or bacteria, most likely though your vet will prescribe eye drops or ointment to clear up any virus your cat may have caught. Remember when administering the medicine to give the complete dosage for the entire time, even if the eye heals. You need to keep giving your kitty the medicine until it is all gone.

Common Feline Health Problems

ID-10022760Cats are independent animals that make great pets for those who have busy day schedules. But there are a few health problems that if you don’t spot them, they can wreak havoc on your cat’s health.

Some of the most common problems which are easily treated include: fleas, nutrition and tape worms. In order to control these issues you need to be proactive, by using methods to control fleas (use flea collars, bath your cat and rid your house of fleas), ensure you’re feeding the best food to your feline and these should take care of the tapeworms, or prevent your cat from getting them. If you have an outdoor cat, doing these will prevent tapeworms in the house, but you don’t control what your cat eats and drinks outside, so you’ll have to be vigilant and watch your cats litter box for spaghetti shaped strings. Tape worms can cause your cat to vomit as well, so if your cat is throwing up, check for tape worms in the consistency of the vomit as well.

Vomiting is another common health issue among cats, simply because they are self cleaning animals. This self cleaning results in hairballs, but if your cat is vomiting more than just hair you should be concerned. Especially if the kitty becomes dehydrated, lethargic, or changes their behavior or meow. In these cases the vomiting may be signs of an infection, urinary tract disease, ingestion of poison or an inedible object, or possibly even diabetes. A quick visit to your vet can get your kitty the help he or she needs.

Gingivitis is commonly associated with health problems.Cats whose teeth aren’t cleaned regularly are at risk of developing gingivitis and complications from untreated plaque growth.The bacteria that grow from the build up of tartar can spread to other organs through the bloodstream and cause kidney damage. So you should have you cats teeth cleaned if you’re unable to do it yourself, and be sure to give you cat toys that promote healthy teeth and gums.

Upper respiratory problems are caused by feline calicivirus and feline herpes virus. Cats are more susceptible to these illnesses when they are in a multi-cat home, kept in close quarters with other cats, and share litter box and food with other cats. Symptoms include: runny nose, congestion, nasal discharge, fever, loss of appetite and rapid breathing. Regular vet check ups and keeping your cat indoors can eliminate some of the root causes of URI’s. Make sure your cats vaccines are up to date, and get your cat vaccinated when their vaccinations run out.

Urinary tract infections are just like the kind humans get, they’re painful, cause urinary crystals, blood in the urine, block urine flow, and increase the size of the bladder wall. Cats with this health issue will strain when relieving themselves and may even meow in pain. Your vet will need urine samples to be sure that your cat is suffering from a UTI, but once given the medication, your cat will be pain free in 10 days. You can prevent A UTI by keeping your cat in a stress-free environment and ensure their nutritional needs are being met.

Kidney failure is another common health problem for cats. This is caused by the aging process. Because this happens gradually, you may not know your cat is sick until they are truly sick and suffering from chronic renal failure. Extreme thirst and frequent urination are among the signs of CRF, along with drooling, dehydration, weight loss and bad breath. Although a cat can’t be cured of CRF, they can be kept comfortable with dietary changes and medication from a vet. If a CRF goes untreated it can lead to acute renal failure, which is deadly when left untreated.

These are the most common types of illnesses, but your feline could be exposed to a range of diseases when roaming outdoors. If your cat suddenly changes their eating or sleeping habits, loses or gains weight rapidly, changes their meow or behavior you should take your cat to the vet immediately. When caught early most illnesses are treatable with minimal health risks to your cat. So don’t wait to see if it gets better, if you’re worried about your cat, listen to your gut feelings and go see a vet, at least to put your mind at ease.

Can Your Dog Catch an STD?

ID-100223399Is it possible for unaltered dogs to catch STD’s? Absolutely. Animals don’t have any way of protecting themselves during sexual intercourse and are just as vulnerable as humans to STD’s. If you have not yet taken your dog for an operation, here are two reasons why you should seriously consider getting them fixed, Brucellosis and Canine Transmissible Venereal Tumor.

Brucellosis is also known as undulant fever. This disease is spread through sexual transmission, but most commonly through nose and mouth contact with the female dog’s infected vaginal discharge. It can also be spread through spontaneous loss of the puppy fetuses and whelping. Even males who have been castrated can carry the disease for several years. Puppies can carry the disease if born to an infected mother. This disease is highly contagious, meaning humans who are exposed to this disease are at risk of contracting it as well.

Symptoms of the disease include miscarriage, inflammation of the testes, and uterine infections. You will see a failure to conceive in a healthy female, male dogs who’s testicles decrease in size and produce abnormal semen. Both sexes can suffer from lethargy, loss of libido, premature aging and generalized lymph node enlargement.

Dogs in kennels and kept for breeding are most at risk of contracting undulant fever. To stop this disease form spreading have your vet screen for Brucellosis. Especially if you intend to breed your pet, or if you don’t plan to have them spayed or neutered. Brucellosis can be treated with antibiotics and isolation, but once a dog has this STD it is very hard to rid the system of it, and many vets will recommend eliminating a positive testing animal if it is a dog that breeds. Spaying and Neutering after testing positive does not cure the animal, it can remain in the system even after the dog has been fixed.

Canine Transmissible Venereal Tumor (CTVT) is a type of cancer that is spread by intercourse and licking. The female dog develops a mass that grows from the vaginal lining, while in male dogs a mass forms on the penis sheath. This cancer can also affect the face of a dog as well with masses growing on the muzzle.

CTVT is most common among young free roaming animals or stray animals. The females are more susceptible than males. CTVT is a single or multiple, pink-red, cauliflower-shaped lesions that can vary greatly in size. Neoplasms are relatively firm but fragile, especially those tumors involving the external genitalia. Other signs of infection include genital discharge, abnormal odor, and excessive licking.

The cancerous masses can be treated through surgery, radiation therapy and drugs. The good news is that there is a 90% cure rate for dogs infected with this disease.

My Dog has to Pee and it’s Raining!

ID-10076706We have been getting so much rain in Central Florida this year. I don’t know about you, but my dog always has to go to the bathroom when it is pouring down rain! Dogs are great pets, but no one enjoys the smell of a wet dog. I wish I had a cure all solution, but at least I have a few tips.

The easiest solution is to get out your umbrella to cover you and your dog from the incoming rain. You can also use bushes or buildings to try and block as much rain as possible. You could purchase a doggie raincoat or if you have a larger dog, a baby horse blanket would probably fit better. But, your dog will still get wet from the rain that has already fallen. You can purchase doggie rain boots, but they can be very difficult to get your pet adjusted to them. The easier answer is to dry off your dog and then spray some odor eliminating coat mist on his coat. It will keep your pet smelling much better in between baths! As always, we would love to give you professional advice specific to your pet. Just bring your pet in to Celebration Veterinary Hospital.

Overweight Dogs

132317Too many dogs are overweight and are much more prone to suffer from several health problems, like arthritis, diabetes, cardiovascular health issues and early death. Dieting and exercise individually are often not enough and a healthy combination of both are more effective. Over time, it is important to make sure that your dog is living at a healthy weight.

To start an exercise routine, start your dog exercising for 15 minutes a day. Then, build up to at least 30 to 60 minutes a day. For their diet, make sure you are feeding them lean proteins. Chicken breast, minced beef and white fish are excellent sources of lean protein.

Bring your dog into Celebration Veterinary Hospital to discuss your dog’s individual exercise and dietary needs. Every breed and dog are unique, so individual analysis is vital to make sure that your dog’s health is top notch.

Training Your Cat

ID-100186791Cats are one of the most popular and favorite pets to own, but it does take some training to protect your furniture and to get them to go to the bathroom in the correct location. Cats are much different than dogs, especially when it comes to training. Cats are not as social as dogs and are much more independent. That leads to cats not responding as easily to training as dogs. It will take more time and patience to train your cat, but it is possible.

Find out what a really special treat is for your cat. Maybe they love fresh chicken cut up into tiny bites. Maybe they love tuna or other cat treats. Some cats love meat-flavored baby food. Use those tasty treats together with positive reinforcement techniques. Make sure you praise your cat with their favorite treat as soon as they do what you are asking them to do. To help your cat learn more quickly, you can use a clicker. When the cat does a correct behavior, make a clicking sound with a clicker or a pen and then offer them their reward. It will take practice and repetition, but your cat will associate the clicking sound with reward and continue to do that behavior.

Remember that punishment is not an effective training method and should never be used. Punishment can teach cats to run away and can cause stress. Stress can cause other health and emotional problems. Bring your cat to Celebration Veterinary Hospital if you would like individualized advice on how to train your cat.

Photo by Gualberto107

 

Visit Your Vet When Your Cat has these Common Health Problems

ID-10022760We love our cats and want to take great care of them. Sometimes we don’t know what symptoms to look for and can miss the symptoms that our cat is showing us. Learn more about common cat health problems to take the best care of your cat.

Fleas – Many cats get fleas, especially in the summer months. Your cat can show several different symptoms, such as red or irritated skin, black dots on their skin, skin infections, hot spots, or hair loss. These might cause your cat to scratch or lick themselves frequently. Bring your cat to the vet to get proper care.

Vomiting – Cats often regurgitate, but it is unsafe when they vomit. If you are not sure of the difference, you will need to bring a sample in to your vet. Vomiting can quickly lead to dehydration, so look for the common symptoms of drooling or abdominal heaving. Vomiting can have many causes, such as eating something poisonous or something not intended to be eaten, cat diabetes, or a urinary tract infection.

Feline Lower Urinary Tract Diseases (FLUTD) – A lot of cats suffer from FLUTD and they need to be treated quickly by a veterinarian to avoid other problems or permanent damage. It can be caused by obesity, stress, or by eating dry food. Pay attention to difficulty urinating or blood in the urine. Cats can show signs up depression, dehydration and a lack of an appetite. Vomiting is also a symptom of FLUTD. If you see these signs, go to your vet immediately.

Diarrhea – If diarrhea has lasted for more than 12 hours, is bloody, or is accompanied by other symptoms, take your cat to the veterinarian. Also, make sure they are drinking plenty of water to avoid dehydration. Diarrhea can be a sign of allergies, infection, liver disease or cancer.

Tapeworms – Tapeworms live and grown inside your cat’s small intestine and can grow up to two feet in length. If your cat is losing weight, eating more or vomiting, monitor their feces. Look for small white worms that look like grains of rice and take them to the vet.

Eye Problems –  If your cat has watery eyes, fur stained from tears, eye gunk or other concerns with their eyes, take them to the vet. They can be symptoms of eye problems like glaucoma and cataracts. They can also be symptoms of retinal disease, viruses and trauma.

Obesity – Studies show that 40-50% of cats are obese, which can lead to many other health problems. Visit your veterinarian to discuss your cat’s diet.

Celebration Veterinary Hospital would love to discuss medical concerns and find solutions with you. We are located in the Water Tower Shoppes on 192 in Celebration, Florida. If you are near Disney World in Central Florida, we are easy to find.  Come in for a consultation.

- Photo by Carlos Porto

Train your Dog with Positive Reinforcement

133187Dogs are great pets! They are very loyal and love their owners deeply. They are a vital part of our lives and we want them to be happy. Trained dogs are able to express themselves to their family. They are also better behaved and don’t need to seek negative attention. Good communication leads to a happier life. So, who wouldn’t want to train their pet?

Training your dog is a process that starts when your dog is only a puppy. As you spend time with your puppy, pay attention to how they express themselves. They communicate with their entire bodies, but especially with their eyes and ears. As you learn about their reactions, you will be able to communicate with them more effectively. For example, if you know your dog puts their head down and their ears back when they are frightened, you will know how to protect them. Their barks also communicate many messages. Listen for the subtle differences between a dog barking for attention and the bark to express the need to go to the bathroom.

Start training your puppy from the first day you have them. Puppies are very curious and are paying attention to everything. Like a child, they are soaking up knowledge like a sponge! The most successful way to train your dog is with positive reinforcement. Simply petting your dog is a reward that your dog loves. Don’t give them food every time they do something right, as obesity in dogs is very dangerous to their health. Praise your dog. Remember, you are focusing on the positive behaviors and ignoring the negative behaviors. Don’t punish your dog and definitely don’t hit your dog.  If the bad behaviors are ignored and the positive alternative is rewarded, you are successfully training your dog. Just be careful to not reward negative behaviors unintentionally. For example, if your dog is barking, do not pet them to get them to be quiet. That is rewarding their behavior of barking.

For more assistance with your dog, bring them to Celebration Veterinary Hospital. We are passionate about getting to know your pet and giving you more specific advice. If you are in Central Florida, you can find us in the Water Tower Shoppes. We are on 192 in Celebration near Walt Disney World and near Kissimmee, Florida.