FOOD ALLERGIES AND YOUR PET

A food allergy is present when a dog or cat has an allergic hypersensitivity reaction to a product contained in a diet. These allergic reactions can be due to protein sources which may include beef, poultry, pork, fish, eggs, or soybeans. Sometimes the pet may be allergic to the carbohydrate source which may include wheat, corn or rice. Additives, colorings, flavorings and preservatives may also be to blame.

Symptoms of a food allergy

The two major syndromes of a food allergy are skin allergies with unrelenting scratching and gastrointestinal problems accompanied by vomiting and diarrhea.

Skin Allergies

Pets with skin problems have year-round scratching, which is not resolved by bathing or using antihistamines or steroids. Different areas of the body can be involved including the ears, paws, inguinal and axillary region, the forelegs and face. In some dogs and cats, the only area affected by the food allergy are the ears.

Gastrointestinal Allergies

Pets with gastrointestinal food allergies have symptoms of vomiting, diarrhea or both. Initially the episodes of vomiting or diarrhea may be intermittent but eventually they occur daily in association with feeding.

Diagnosis of a Food Allergy

There is no reliable blood test or skin test for diagnosing a food allergy. A food trial is the only alternative. The diagnosis of a food allergy is established by feeding the patient a hypoallergenic diet consisting of a novel protein ( a protein never fed before) and carbohydrate diet for the next 4-8 weeks and observing the patient for improvement. During the initial testing period, no other foods, treats, or supplements should be fed. Once a pet develops a food allergy, the allergy is present for the rest of the pet’s life.

Hypoallergenic/Food Allergy Diets

There are several diets available for dogs and cats in both dry and canned presentations. These are balanced diets, which can be fed for the entire life of your pet.

Dogs:

Eukanuba Diets
Fish and Potato
– comes in 13oz. cans
– comes in 6lb, 15lb, and 30lb bags.

IVD Diets
Venison and Potato
– comes in 13oz. cans
-comes in 8lb, 17lb and 25lb bags

Duck and Potato
-comes in 13oz. cans
-comes in 8lb, 17lb and 25lb bags

Hill’s Prescription Diets
D/D Duck and Rice, D/D Egg and Rice, D/D Salmon and Rice
-comes in 13oz cans
-comes in 8lb, 18lb and 20lb bags

Z/D Ultra Allergen-Free
-comes in 13oz.and 5.5oz cans
-comes in 8lb, 18lb and 25lb bags.

Cats:

IVD Diets
Venison and Pea, Duck and Pea, Rabbit and Pea
– comes in 5.5 oz cans
– comes in 8lb and 17lb bags

rott puppy

Some Important Facts About Food Allergies:

– A change from one commercial pet food to another commercial pet food will not improve a food allergy. All commercial pet foods have similar ingredients used to formulate the diet and the only difference between them (from an allergy standpoint) is the price and the color of the packaging.

-A dog or cat can develop a food allergy at any age.

– A dog or cat can develop a food allergy to a diet that it has eaten it’s entire life.

– Only the hypoallergenic diet can be fed to a dog with a food allergy. Table scraps, dog treats, chewable treats (cow hooves, or pig ears), vitamin and mineral supplements or even monthly heartworm medication can be responsible for a continuation of the food allergies even when
the hypoallergenic diet is fed.

– The goal of the food trial is to see if the pet’s symptoms subside while being fed the hypoallergenic diet.

DENTAL CARE AND YOUR PET

The Staff at Newport Hills Animal Hospital wants to provide the best possible medical care for your pet. Proper dental care is one of the most important areas of preventative medical care. Diseases involving the mouth occur in over 90% of dogs and cats by 3 years of age if there is not regular care of the teeth and gums.

Signs and symptoms of poor dental health include the following:

  • Persistent, foul mouth odor
  • Inflamed gums (redness, swelling or tenderness)
  • Plaque formation
  • Tartar formation
  • Bleeding gums
  • Loose or infected teeth
  • Mouth pain

The Importance Of Regular Dental Care

Imagine how your teeth would look and feel if you didn’t brush them regularly. Now imagine what would happen if you never brushed them at all. You would have severe gum problems, foul breath,
dental tartar and the loss of teeth. Uncontrolled dental disease can lead to health problems in other parts of the body including internal infection, heart and kidney disease, weight loss and loss of appetite.

Anesthesia and Dentistry

A thorough cleaning of the teeth requires general anesthesia. We use the safest anesthetic protocol possible for each particular case. In our effort to offer the most recent advances in veterinary medicine, we use Sevoflurane for dogs and Isoflurane for cats for the induction of anesthesia. These human anesthetics approved for use in pets allow us to avoid using injectable anesthetics, which have prolonged effects and narrower safety margins. All patients’ heart rates and respiratory rates are monitored with a pulse oximeter during every procedure.

Blood Test And Urinalysis

We require that all pets over 5 years of age have a current blood test and urinalysis prior to any anesthetic procedure. This is done in an effort to make the anesthetic procedure as safe as possible for your pet as well as to alert the doctor to any additional needs your pet may have prior to the procedure.

Cleaning and Examination

All surfaces of the teeth are cleaned with an ultrasonic scaler or scaled by hand. The mouth, including the teeth, tongue, gums and throat are examined for abnormalities. Abnormal teeth with evidence of periodontitis are examined for pockets beneath the gum line.

X-rays

Dental x-rays using a human dental x-ray machine are utilized to examine teeth which are loose, broken, painful, or show evidence of periodontal infection.

Extractions

Extraction of diseased teeth is sometimes necessary to control infection and to remove painful teeth. The decision to remove a tooth is based on both visual and x-ray examination.

Medications

All pets with periodontal disease need to be on oral antibiotics for 14-28 days. All pets, requiring extractions need to be on oral antibiotics for 7 days following the procedure. For those pets requiring extractions, pain medication is given at the time of the procedure and also sent home if additional pain control is necessary.

In Conclusion……

Routine dental care is a crucial part of your veterinarian‘s plan of preventative medicine for your pet. There are certain steps we can take to ensure that our pets remain healthy and happy. A simple examination by your veterinarian can determine whether or not your pet needs a dental cleaning at this time. Your veterinarian can also instruct you in methods of daily dental care to help maintain your pet’s oral health. Please feel free to ask us for more information.

Top 10 Tips To A Healthier Dog

We all want our pups to live a long, happy, healthy life and there are things every dog parent can do to help make that happen. Here are 10 tips to help any dog feel happier and healthier.

1. Spay Or Neuter

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(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

Spaying stops a female dog from going into heat and can help prevent breast cancer and pyometra, or infection of the uterus. Neutering a male dog can mellow out aggressive behavior and help prevent testicular cancer, prostate disease, and hernias.

2. Vaccinate

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(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

By three months of age, the protective antibodies naturally passed along through a mother’s milk have been used up and your puppy needs to be vaccinated to help protect him or her against many common infectious diseases, including leptospirosis, distemper and parvovirus, as well as a rabies vaccination. Your vet may also recommend vaccinations for kennel cough and Lyme disease. Vaccinations will save your dog’s life.

3. Visit Your Vet

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(Picture Credit: Getty Images)

(Picture Credit: Getty Images)

Like you, dogs need regular visits to the doctor to ensure good health. An annual health check gives your vet the chance to nip any illness or health concerns in the bud before they can cause big problems and bills. The vet will ask about your pet’s behavior, eating, and exercise habits, while checking your dog’s vital stats. Check at your local pet store for low-cost pet clinics that can help keep costs down.

4. Declare War On Fleas And Ticks

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(Picture Credit: Getty Images)

(Picture Credit: Getty Images)

Fleas can cause health problems beyond itchy skin. They can be the source of allergies, anemia, and tapeworms. Fortunately there are a myriad of flea control products available, including Advantage and Frontline, two of the most popular. Monthly applications should be given based on the weight of your dog. Keep in mind when you are gearing up for your flea wars you must treat all your pets, not just the ones where fleas are obvious.

You especially have to be vigilant in warmer months and with global warming those warmer months seem to last longer and longer, which means you may need to extend those summer treatments.

5. Treat Heartworm By Preventing It

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(Picture Credit: Getty Images)

(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

Heartworm is very difficult to treat and can be fatal for your dog so prevention is the key. Giving your dog one dose monthly of a tablet, like Heartguard, can stop heartworm before it starts.

6. Exercise Your Dog Every Day

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(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

And not just a quick jaunt around the block. Exercise through walking and playing with your dog will keep your little buddy physically fit, mentally healthy, and reduce the chance of belligerent and destructive behavior as well. Regular exercise also helps your dog maintain a healthy weight and heart, while increasing muscle mass. Your dog’s exercise requirements will be different depending on breed, sex, age, and health.

7. Watch Your Dog’s Weight

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(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

Lack of exercise and overfeeding is as much a problem in pets as it is in people. Your dog cannot decide how much exercise he or she needs or what kind of food is best to eat; only you can do that. Arthritis, liver disease, and coronary disease are just a few of the health issues facing an overweight dog. To help your dog lose weight, your vet may recommend a mix of exercise and switching to a low-calorie brand of food, or gradually reducing the amount of regular food you feed your dog. If your pup is overweight talk to your vet to figure out the best course of action.

8. Weekly Health Checks

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(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

One of the best ways to prevent health issues is to check up on your dog weekly. First, inspect your dog’s coat and skin for swelling, flakes or scabs. Then look into your dog’s ears and eyes for any signs of redness or discharge. Finally watch for any changes in eating or drinking habits. If anything differs from what’s normal for your dog, consult your vet.

9. Stay Away From Dangerous Foods

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(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center compiled a list of foods that could be dangerous, even poisonous for your dog: alcoholic beverages, chocolate, avocado, coffee, fatty foods, macadamia nuts, spoiled or moldy foods, onions and onion powder, grapes and raisins, salt, garlic, yeast dough, and products sweetened with xylitol. Post this list and be sure your family and any caregivers are aware of it.

10. Brush Those Teeth!

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(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

(Picture Credit: Shutterstock)

Bad breath can be a sign of teeth or gum problems. Particles of food, saliva, and bacteria known as plaque can build up on the gums and teeth and cause infection. If you don’t treat this, infection can result in tooth decay and even move into the bloodstream and affect your pet’s heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, bones, and joints. Inspect teeth and gums weekly, and check with your vet for instructions on regular brushing with canine toothpaste.
Read more at https://dogtime.com/dog-health/general/659-ten-steps-to-a-healthier-dog-aspca#wzMXf4bHmkezH76o.99
Read more at https://dogtime.com/dog-health/general/659-ten-steps-to-a-healthier-dog-aspca#cjf01X7m46WXIFoQ.99

6 at-home pet grooming tips

1. To avoid your dog’s hair getting matted, brush him/her out at least once a week

2. To avoid ear infections, wipe your dog’s ears once a week, or depending on activity level

3. To shorten your dog’s blood vessel in their nails AKA “Quick”, walk him/her a lot on asphalt to naturally file down the nail.

4. To avoid the nails getting too long and curling in on your dog’s paws – causing a puncture wound, you should take your dog in for a nail trim regularly

5. If your dog is experiencing extremely dry skin, apply raw coconut oil on the skin before giving a bath

6. Omega 3 Fatty Acids are very good for the coat and skin of your furry friend, they are found in many treats like Cod Skin (sold at our store for $1), and Salmon Skin (also sold at our store for $2); there are a number of supplements that will help with your dog’s skin, one of our favorites is Nootie’s Progility Skin & Coat (also sold at our store for $19.99)

What Makes Our Grooming Services Different Than Other Places?

Before we decided to open House of Paw with the concept of Completely Cage-FREE, we used to take our dogs to groomers regularly, but every time we went to pick them up, they seemed traumatized and feeling abandoned. We didn’t understand why at first, until we asked to see what our dogs did while they were there.

The process was as follows, as soon as our dogs went there for their appointments, they would wait in a tiny cage without water, then they would go in for their showers, then they are placed in another cage for drying (put in mind, there are a few cases of dogs dying in these cages, as they are too harsh for some dogs to breathe), after they are put in this cage for almost an hour, until they are fully dry, they then wait their turn to see the groomer for their haircut.

This process is extremely hard on any dog and no dog should be through this experience, that’s why we came up with the Cage-FREE grooming idea. Our process is completely different than that of a regular grooming place. In most cases, your pup goes directly to the bathing room, after they are done bathing, they are then hand blow dried to insure the dog’s safety and comfort. After they are done drying, the bather then places the dog in the grooming room to get groomed. The whole process takes about 1 hour and 30 mins to 3 hours, depending on the size of your dog and the condition of his/her coat.

In some cases where we are extremely busy, dogs get to enjoy the playing are with other dogs, playing around, watching TV, laying on the beds. At no point is your dog ever caged, left alone, or crying.

We care for the dogs, just the same way we care for ours <3