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Stolen Great Danes

Stolen from a trainer’s home in Homestead/Miami FL area on July 20, 2014, a very large reward in the amount of $20,000 will be given for any information leading to the recovery of 4 stolen Great Dane pups. Correspondence from one of the owners to NBC News: “Dear NBC News, Last Sunday July 20, 4 Great Danes puppies (2 of which were mine) were stolen from my trainer’s home in Homestead/Miami FL area~ While the police have been notified, they have not been extremely helpful. The best chance we have of finding our puppies is to do what we have been doing all week which is to get the word out as well as the photos of our stolen babies. We have gotten coverage from the news stations in Miami including WPLG Local 10, CBS Miami Channel 4, and NBC Miami Channel 6. This media coverage along with tens and tens of thousands of shares on Facebook were a huge help in getting our story out, however, today, Monday July 28, now 8 days after the puppies were stolen, it seems to have died down. It is my sincere hope that you could please help our story go out nationwide. We honestly believe that the thieves who have our babies intend to sell them as soon as the “buzz” dies down. On behalf of myself, and the other owners of the dogs who were stolen, Elena Ledon Bustillo, Elyades Betancourt, and Sid & Cyndi Calk, we will not rest until our babies are home with us…. We will NEVER let the “buzz” die down. If you have any questions or are able to help at all, please feel free to contact me, Kathleen 239-209-8052 or email fendanegreatdanes@hotmail.com With sincere thanks,” Additional Information and Photos from Craigslist: All 4 puppies are microchipped and the micro-chip company has been notified. All vets, clinics, shelters have received STOLEN POSTERS of the 4 Dane Puppies. 2 are fawns (solid tan color with dark black faces)~ 1 male 1 female 2 are harlequins(white with black patches)~1 male 1 female   Post by PreciousPets. Let’s get the buzz going again!  Please share this with as many people as you can to help these heartbroken owners get their babies back home again ASAP!

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 29, 2014, 8:16 pm
Lyme Disease - An Emerging Problem

The call of the Great Outdoors … it’s hard to resist in the summer months, especially for dogs craving a bit of adventure. However, this year, many pet parents are concerned about the prevalence of Lyme disease, as well as its symptoms like joint pain. How can you protect your canine from this illness that’s on the rise in the U.S.? Our pet product formulator, Dr. Jane Bicks, brings you all the details about the recent outbreak, including steps you can take to keep your pet kids safe this summer. Read the latest from Dr. Jane now …

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 28, 2014, 1:36 pm
Should You Shave Your Pet?

Nearly everywhere in America, this summer is a scorcher, and we know that as a responsible pet parent, you want to do everything you can to keep your best four-legged friends cool. So when you look at your Pomeranian, Golden Retriever or long-haired cat wearing a thick, fluffy coat, you might feel tempted to break out your grooming tools and give him a serious hair cut. But hold those clippers! While you or I would hate to sport a fur coat in 100-degree weather, your pets’ fur coats are actually providing them with heat relief. “A dog’s coat is kind of like insulation for your house,” explains Dr. Louise Murray, Vice President of the ASPCA Animal Hospital. “Insulation stops your home from getting too cold in winter, but it also keeps it from overheating in summer—and your dog’s coat does the same thing.” Dogs’ coats have several layers, and these layers are essential to your dog’s comfort in the heat. Robbing your dog of this natural cooling system can lead to discomfort and overheating. And keeping your dog cool isn’t the only reason to leave his coat intact, Dr. Murray warns. Your dog’s coat prevents your pup from getting sunburn and helps protect her from skin cancer. So what can you do? “It’s OK to trim your long-haired dog’s long hair, such as any hair that hangs down on his legs,” Dr. Murray says. Just never attempt to clip mats off your pet’s coat with scissors, Dr. Murray adds. And if you’ve got a long-haired kitty, leave her coat intact. Instead, brush her a little more frequently during the hot summer months. To protect your pet from sunburn and skin cancer, save longer walks for evenings, and consider applying pet-specific sun block to thinly covered areas like the bridge of your dog’s nose, the tips of his ears and his belly, Dr. Murray suggests, noting that pets with thin coats, as well as those with white or light-colored coats, are especially at risk for sun damage. Of course, pet parents should remember to keep pets inside with plenty of water during hot days—hydration is key! Source:  ASPCA  

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 24, 2014, 2:18 pm
Dog in Back of Car

Dog-Friendly Travel: Road Trip Checklist Article courtesy of PetAlive Since summer has arrived, what better time than now to hit the open road with one of your favorite companions? However, preparing your 4-legged friend for a 4-wheel road trip adventure is a must to ensure that his health and well-being stay intact along the way. 1. Make sure your dog is comfortable in the car. For safety, many experts recommend purchasing a dog harness/seat belt or carrier. Several weeks before your departure, take your dog on a few short, local rides and get him accustomed to riding. This will also give you a chance to see if he has any tendencies to get anxious or carsick. 2. Practice bathroom breaks. Some dogs are only able to have bowel movements in familiar territory. Consider if the areas you’ll be stopping at will have adequate grassy areas, and if you need to help train your dog to go to the bathroom in different environments. While still at home, give your pet a few weeks to get adapted to a potty cue phrase, and offer a reward afterwards for reinforcement. 3. Plan your lodging itinerary. Not all hotels are dog-friendly, so make sure you check and confirm by phone before you book. For recommendations, check out this blog post. 4. Keep your pet to a schedule. As much as possible, keep your pet on the same bathroom and feeding schedule as he would have at home to minimize the chance for any accidents or digestive upset. 5. Exercise your pet. In addition to potty breaks, give your pet ample time to go for a long walk, run around and relax.  Packing along a favorite toy can help keep him entertained while he’s cooped up in the car until you reach your next break spot. 6. Keep your dog’s head in the car. While most dogs love the feel of the breeze on their face, this can not only be dangerous, but can also be harmful to the eyes. Excessive wind can lead to dry eyes and road debris can lead to scratches and irritation. 7. Watch out for wooded/grassy areas. While your pet may be excited to roam, be aware of possible ticks, snakes and other dangers. Keep your pet on a tight leash and check him thoroughly after a hike. Make sure vaccinations are current.  If you do find a tick, prompt and correct removal is of the utmost importance to your pet…to you too!  Here are some tips on how NOT to remove a tick! 8. Pack the essentials. Before your trip, make sure you have all your pet’s medicines and natural remedies on hand. Check your pet’s collar and tag to be sure it’s secure and up-to-date. Pack an extra leash, plenty of bottled water, feeding bowls, food and bags for waste pickup. EasyTravel Solution™ — Homeopathic remedy to relieve motion sickness for balanced digestion and calm, happy cats and dogs during travel.  

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 20, 2014, 10:33 pm
Grains in Pet Food

In all my years of learning as much as I can about pet food ingredients, I find it very disheartening that so many pet parents are dead set against feeding grains to their pets.  Who started this anyway?  Where does this come from?  What I really find disturbing is the pet food manufacturers are giving in to this ‘fear of grains’ and are appropriately manufacturing new pet food formulas promoting grain-free, just to keep the money rolling in.  Well, this is my opinion, and I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels this way. Did you know that grains are actually healthy?  They’re loaded with protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals, amino acids and more.  So tell me, when was the last time you saw a wolf in the wild, after a fresh kill, pull out the contents of their prey’s digestive tract and toss it all aside?  Well maybe not recently, but you will notice that the stomach contents is one of the first items on their menu. So, since it’s all in the timing, and this information just shared with me by Jay P. Margedant, President of Flint River Ranch couldn’t have been timed better, I want to share with you and any other interested pet parents, the valuable nutrition our pets receive from a vast majority of grains, and then get the reaction from all you ‘Say No to Grain’ers”! “We hear from people who have questions about pet products and what they feed to their pets. Some are wondering if a grain-free diet better than one that contains some grains. Truly, there is not one type of diet that is best for every dog and cat in the world. All pets have different metabolism & nutritional needs and results vary depending on their individual metabolism and the nutrition that is presented. Flint River Ranch has always advocated adjusting your pets diet to meet their nutritional needs. Some pets may do well on a grain-free kibble while others find success with formulas that have healthy grains or a unique carbohydrate mix.   It is important to remember that what holds dry kibble together when it’s cooked (or baked as in the case of Flint River Ranch products!) is its carbohydrate source.  All dry kibbles need a carbohydrate to bind the ingredients together. “Grain-free” does not mean carbohydrate-free. Carbohydrates can be from a grain source like potatoes, conventional grains, tapioca or non-cereal grains. Here are some of the popular carbohydrates used in making dry kibble for dogs and cats: • Brown Rice: Complex carbohydrate that (once cooked) is fairly easy to digest. Brown Rice is a source of fiber and contains magnesium, 4 different B-Vitamins, calcium, iron, protein and zinc. • Oatmeal: Naturally rich in soluble and insoluble fiber, B-vitamins, Vitamin E, Zinc, Selenium, Copper, iron, protein, calcium, Manganese and Magnesium and is considered gluten free. • Millet: A grass seed, not a grain.  Gluten Free, high in fiber and protein, B-complex vitamins, calcium, zinc, iron Vitamin E, and contains essential amino acids (18 amino acids!). • Potato: Quick to digest, gluten-free, Vitamin C, B-complex, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc. • Sweet Potato: Easy to digest, gluten-free, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Iron, Magnesium, Potassium, and carotenoids (antioxidants) • Peas: Gluten-free, Vitamin-B complex, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Vitamin A, Calcium, Iron, Copper, Zinc, Protein and Manganese. • Tapioca: Fiber source, gluten free, calcium, phosphorous, potassium, iron, B-vitamins, and Magnesium. Gluten free. • Quinoa: Seed from a vegetable plant related to spinach and beets, not considered a grain: High in protein & fiber, gluten free, Vitamin B-complex, complex carbohydrate • Whole Wheat: Good source of fiber, easy to digest, contains protein, calcium, Vitamins B6, E & K, manganese, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, zinc, selenium and copper. • Chickpeas (Garbanzo beans): Contain protein, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc and Vitamins A, E, K & C.Rich in B Vitamins. Gluten free. • Lentils: Contain protein, Vitamins B, C, E, K, phosphorus, potassium, copper, selenium, calcium, iron and manganese. Gluten free.   The nutritional benefits of the ingredients above are not 100% complete; there are other trace minerals and vitamins in the ingredients used to make various formulas. Some of these ingredients listed are gluten free, others are not.  My point is to show you that there are nutritional benefits to all of the carbohydrate sources used to make dry kibble. Additionally, foods with carbohydrates that break down quickly during digestion and release glucose rapidly into the bloodstream have a high Glycemic Index. Foods with carbohydrates that break down more slowly release glucose more gradually into the bloodstream and have a low Glycemic Index. The slower carbohydrates are broken down, the more likely it is the body will use up the glucose, rather than store it as fat. (lesson for us all!)  Additionally, complex carbohydrates that break down slower allow time for the body to readily absorb valuable nutrients.     Flint River Ranch provides different formulas for flavor variety and to assist with the various nutritional needs of your pets. If your dog doesn’t have an issue with grains, then find the best formula your pet does well on; they may do great on our Original Canine Kibble and/or our Lamb & Millet formula. It may be that they do well on our limited grain formulas; we present our Trout & Potato and Duck & Oatmeal for you to try. (Yes, we do use oats, but oats are free of the antigens and used when the body has an allergic outbreak.  There are no other commercial grains in these formulas.)   And remember, it is not always just “ingredients” that are the key to a healthy formula. Superior nutrition also has to do with the delivery method of all ingredients & nutrients. We use a superior oven-baking process that others don’t. This makes an even better, more nutritionally dense formula if given the same ingredients. I’ll always bet on our slow oven-baking process over the quick-steamed, extruded products any day!...

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 16, 2014, 4:46 pm
Veterinarian Medicine

Veterinarian Medicine and Essential Oils Essential oils have been used very successfully on many different kinds of animals from tiny kittens to 2,000 lb. Draft horses. Animals respond to essential oils similarly to humans. Animals are not as sensitive to the phenol and sesquiterpine constituents so the oils can be applied “neat” or full strength. A determination must be made which oils are applicable to the situation. For long term treatments or health regimens, a few drops of oil can be applied 3-4 times daily. General Guidelines: For small animals (cats & small dogs) apply 3-4 drops per application. For larger animals (large dogs) apply 6-7 drops per application. For horses apply 15-20 drops per application. Helpful Tips: For open wounds or hard-to-reach areas, oils can be put in a spray bottle sprayed directly on location. After applying the oils locally, cover the open wound with Rose Ointment. It seals the wound & protects it from further infection. It also prevents the essential oils from evaporating. There is no right or wrong way to apply essential oils. Use common sense and good judgement as you experiment with different methods. Take care not to get essential oils in the animal’s eye. When treating animals with essential oils internally, make sure that the oils are pure and free of chemicals, solvents, and adulterants. How to Apply Essential Oils: For non-ungulate animals (not having hooves), oils can be applied to paws for fast absorption. For hoofed animals, apply oils on the spine or auricular points of the ears. Apply on the gums, tongue, or underneath the top lip. Sprinkle a few drops on the spine or flanks and massage them in. For a dog or cat, apply on the pads of their feet. Examples of Applications: When treating animals for viral or bacterial infection, arthritis, virus, bone injury, use the same oil and protocol recommended for humans. EXAMPLE: If you have a high-spirited, jittery horse that is tough to saddle, apply Peace & Calming and Valor on yourself. As you approach him, he will have a tendency to bow his head or flare his nostrils when he perceives the aroma. Kneel down or squat beside him and remain still so that the animal can become accustomed to the smell. As he breathes in the fragrances, he will become calmer and easier to manage. Animal Treatment A to Z Arthritis: (common in older animals and pure breeds) To prevent: Power Meal and Sulfurzyme. Arthritis: Ortho Ease or PanAway (massage on location or put several drops in animal feed). Use Raindrop-like application of PanAway, birch or wintergreen, pine or spruce and massage the location. For larger animals use at leas 2 times more oil than a normal raindrop would call for on humans. Put Power Meal or Sulfurzyme in feed or fodder. Small animals: 1/8 to ¼ serving per day. Large animals 2-4 servings per day. Birthing: Gentle Baby. Bleeding: geranium, helichrysum. Bones (pain, spurs) all animals: PanAway, birch or wintergreen , lemongrass and spruce. Bones (fractured or broken) Mix PanAway with 20-30 drops of birch or wintergreen, and spruce. Cover the area. After 15 minutes, rub in 10-15 more drops of birch or wintergreen and spruce. Cover with Ortho Sport Massage Oil. Calming: Peace & Calming, Trauma Life, lavender (domestic animals respond very quickly to the smell). Colds and flu: Small animals put 1-3 drops Exodus II, Immupower, or Di-Tone in feed or fodder. For large animals, use 10-20 drops. Colic: For large animals (cows) put 10-20 drops of Di-Tone in feed or fodder. For small animals, use 1-3 drops. Inflammation: Apply Ortho Ease, PanAway, pine, birch or wintergreen, or spruce on location. Put Sulfurzyme in feed. Insect Repellent: Put 10 drops each of citronella, Purification, eucalyptus and peppermint in 8 ounce spray bottle with water. Alternate formula: Put 2 drops pine, 2 drops Eucalyptus (globulus), 5-10 drops of citronella in a spray bottle of water. Shake vigorously and spray over area. Floral waters such as peppermint and Idaho tansy can also be used. Ligaments/tendons (torn or sprained): Apply lemongrass and lavender (equal parts) on location and cover area. For small animals or birds, dilute essential oils with V-6 Mixing Oil (2 parts mixing oil to 1 part essential oil). Mineral deficiencies: Mineral Essence. (In one case, an animal stopped chewing on furniture when his mineral deficiency was met). Mites (ear mites): Apply Purification and peppermint to a Q-Tip and swab the inside of the ear. Nervous anxiety: Valor, Trauma Life, geranium, lavender and valerian. Pain: Helichrysum Saddle sores: Melrose and Rose Ointment. Shiny coats: Rosemary and sandalwood. Sinus problems: Diffuse Raven, R. C., pine, myrtle, and Eucalyptus (radiata) in animal’s sleeping quarters or sprinkle on bed. Strangle in horses: Mix 4 parts Exodus II with 1 part Melrose. Ticks: To remove ticks, apply 1 drop cinnamon or peppermint on Q-Tip and swab on tick. Trauma: Trauma Life, Valor, Peace & Calming, melissa, rosewood, lavender, valerian and chamomile. Tumors or cancers: Mix frankincense with lavender or clove and apply on area of tumor. Worms and parasites: ParaFree and Di-Tone. Wounds (open or abrasions): Melrose, helichrysum and Rose Ointment. We recommend Young Living Essential Oils due to their high quality and purity! To learn how Essential Oils can benefit your pets, click here. To order Young Living Essential Oils, click here. To order any of the items above, call 800-371-2928 and use the referral number 827420.

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 13, 2014, 8:46 pm
Frosty Paws Ice Cream Treats for Pets

Frosty Paws ice cream treats will be a big hit with your dogs in your home during these hot months.  Well actually, it’ll be a big hit outside cause I don’t think many of us want melted ‘ice cream’ all over the rugs and floor!  lol  These are so easy to make and might I add, very nutritious too.  Since they’re made with ingredients we ourselves eat on a regular basis, go ahead and try one and tell us what you think!  32 ounces vanilla yogurt 1 mashed banana or 1 jar of baby fruit 2 tablespoons peanut butter 2 tablespoons honey Blend all together and freeze in either 3 ounce paper cups, ice cube trays or empty styrofoam egg cartons.  I’ve even been tempted to fill Kong’s and freeze…WOW, this was a BIG hit!!! Let us know if these were a hit in your household and what other mold you may have used!   

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 10, 2014, 5:32 pm
Sloppy Kiss

If you love animals and love to send eCards like I do, then you’re going to absolutely LOVE Sloppy Kiss Cards!  I became hooked several years ago when a friend sent me a birthday ecard in which a Boxer dog was the star of this hilarious animation.  To those of you who know me, you’ll know all about my passion and obsession for Boxers.  My first thought was ‘how did she do this?’  Immediately I began my investigation and discovered that I could do this too, and not just using Boxers, but a huge selection of over 250+ breeds of dogs, cats and other pets!  I was instantly in puppy heaven, putting it mildly! Sloppy Kiss Cards is an animated ecard greeting service for pet lovers and pet businesses. Each ecard tells a story. You choose and name the dog, cat, horse, bird, fish or other pet that stars in your ecard. They offer over 250 pets to choose from when customizing your dog ecard, cat ecard or pet ecard. If you can’t find a photo of your breed, you can upload your own photo. There are animated ecards for just about every holiday and occasion you can think of.  The service works just like other ecard services where you can schedule your ecards ahead of time (or send immediately), track when they’ve been opened and even maintain your own easy-to-use address book for future sending.  There is NO limit on how many ecards you can send…it is UNLIMITED! “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”  ~ Maya Angelou You can sign-up for your Sloppy Kiss Cards FREE 30-Day Trial and start sending ecards immediately.  If you enjoy the service after using it for 30 days, and want to keep it, it’s just a mere $13.95 a year…yes, ONE YEAR!   I could go on and on about how much I love Sloppy Kiss Cards, but the only way you’re going to understand is to try it yourself, for FREE! Personalized Ecard Campaigns for Pet Businesses Every ecard customized with your client’s pet & name. The automated way to send pet ecards for birthdays, holidays, reminders and more! Drive Repeat Business Build & Maintain Relationships Save Time & Money Promote Your Business How it works Upload Contacts Select eCard Select Campaign Type Personalize & Send There are eCards specific  for Veterinarians, Pet Sitters, Dog Groomers, Dog Boarding, Dog Walkers, Doggie Daycares, Breeders, Pet Stores and more … Learn more and get started TODAY!

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 8, 2014, 5:30 pm
Dog Sitting in Car

Article courtesy of PetAlive What is Car Sickness? Any motion that a pet is not used to can cause them to feel ill and disorientated. While some animals see a car trip as an exciting journey, for others it can become a stressful time of feeling ill and unwell. The first signs of car sickness are yawning and excessive drooling (sometimes followed by vomiting). What Causes Car Sickness? Car sickness can be caused by: * Car motion * Confinement * Previous bad experiences in a car * A first-time ride * Anticipation of the destination Help for Car Sickness Conditioning can go a long way in helping your pet to overcome car sickness. Sit with your pet inside a parked car with the engine off, playing with toys and giving your pet praise and positive attention. Let your pet get used to these new surroundings. Initially, just sit in the car with your pet and give him/her lots of praise and love for not showing any symptoms of sickness. Next, repeat the same thing for the next few days, but this time, run the engine (don’t forget the praise!). Next, when the engine is running, try backing out of the driveway and then pulling up to the house again. Continue showing praise. Finally, try going around the block and keep this up until your pet is able to ride without getting sick. For severe cases and for long trips, you may want to try motion sickness medication – always consult with your vet. Natural remedies There are many herbal and homeopathic remedies that can safely help treat and prevent car sickness without harmful side effects for your pet. Zingiber officinalis has a long history of use in relieving the symptoms of nausea, vomiting, indigestion, flatulence and dizziness. Working mainly in the digestive tract, Zingiber boosts digestive fluids and neutralizes acids, making it an effective alternative to conventional anti-nausea medication. Mentha piperita relaxes the muscles of the digestive tract and stimulates the flow of natural digestive juices and bile, while Kalium phosphate provides quick relief of a ‘nervous stomach’. Aconite and Cocculus are homeopathic remedies that treat illness accompanied by fear, anxiety and panic attacks. Pulsatilla vulgaris helps to calm and soothe animals during bouts of travel sickness. It is particularly useful in animals that are averse to being confined in small areas. Tips to Prevent Car Sickness A number of steps can be taken to help prevent car sickness. Here are some helpful tips: * While traveling with your pet in the car, open a window a crack to get some fresh air. * It is important that the dog be able to see out of the window so try to arrange a spot in the car that the dog can get up onto and see the road ahead. * Train your dog to get in and out of the car with a specific command. This will teach him or her not to get into strangers’ cars. * Safety first while on the road. If your dog is jumping around inside your car, put him or her in a crate for a short while. After your pet has settled down, open the crate and offer some freedom so long he or she behaves. EasyTravel Solution: Homeopathic remedy to relieve motion sickness for balanced digestion and calm, happy cats and dogs during travel  

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 6, 2014, 6:08 pm
Running Dog

Prior to anticipated fireworks, vigorous exercise and play will help to mentally and physically tire the animal so that they are less responsive to the stimuli. Another benefit of exercise is that it increases natural serotonin levels, which can have a sedative effect. Wags of Wisdom “You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.” -Erma Bombeck Wishing everyone a wonderful and safe 4th of July!!!

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 3, 2014, 1:41 pm
Dog in Pool

Did you know that heat stroke (hyperthermia) can occur in pets that are overly exercised during a heat wave, even while outdoors? It’s true! Dogs have very few sweat glands – most are in between their paw pads – which is why they must pant in order to cool themselves down when their body temperature gets too high. A dog’s normal body temperature is between 100 to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit but if it gets over 104 degrees, your pet could be at risk for hyperthermia which could lead to unconsciousness, coma, or even death! It is important though for your dog to continue to get his or her regular daily exercise despite the heat so here’s a list of activities and tips that you and your pet can use to get some exercise in on those especially unforgiving summer days: 5 Exercise Tips to Keep Your Dog Cool and Fit This Summer: * Go for your daily walk, run or bike ride before sunrise or after sunset as the weather is usually cooler than during the day . * Make sure your dog always has a constant supply of water to keep his or her body temperature down and be sure to allow for frequent breaks throughout your exercise routine. * Try running your dog on the treadmill at home while having the air conditioner or a fan turned on. * Doggie daycare facilities will usually have indoor activities for dogs when the weather outside is too hot for the dogs to play in. Just make sure that the facility will have the air conditioning on. * If you’re near a beach, lake or swimming pool, going for a swim or playing fetch in the water will keep your pet cool while exercising. Hopefully this list also helps sparks your imagination to think of new ways for your pet to stay cool and fit this summer!  If you have any other cool tips for me to add to this list, please post them in the Comments below!

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Author: Bree
Posted: July 1, 2014, 5:40 pm
Help Your Pet Relax This July 4th

Yup, no lie….the 4th of July is right around the corner!  Are you ready for the fireworks?  Is your dog? As you make your shopping list for the 4th of July this year, don’t forget that fireworks can cause intense anxiety in dogs and cats.  And festivities aren’t the only summer stressers for pets – thunderstorms and summer travel can be just as bad.  So when you prep for that BBQ or picnic, add Flower Essences and a Thundershirt to your list. continue reading  >>

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 29, 2014, 7:13 pm
Ice Bucket Treat for Dogs

Would your dog play with an ice bucket?  Probably, but wouldn’t it be better if it had some frozen, and even tasty, treats inside of it?  Here’s a fun, home-made treat to keep your dog cool during the ‘dog days’ of summer! Fill a pail or bucket with water or chicken stock, toys, treats, carrots, etc and freeze!  This will keep your pups busy for hours outside!  Yeah, you wouldn’t want to let your dog have this inside, not unless you have a little baby pool in the house, and he/she will stay in it!  We’d love to hear from our readers who have done this!  What kind of treats did you freeze?  Please let us know in the comments below, and you’ll probably give others some great ideas!

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 27, 2014, 11:40 am
Couple Files Suit After Woman Claims She Got Salmonella from Dog Food

Suit: Elmwood Park woman contracted salmonella from dog food A west suburban couple filed a federal lawsuit Monday against Diamond Pet Foods, claiming the woman was one of dozens people to contract salmonella from tainted dog food in 2012. Joanna and Cezary Cygan, of Elmwood Park, filed the product liability and negligence lawsuit against Diamond Pet Foods Wednesday in U.S. District Court. Diamond Pet Foods initiated a voluntary recall on some of their pet food products in April 2012, after an FDA investigation at the company’s Gaston, South Carolina, factory revealed an outbreak of Salmonella Infantis in dry dog food, according to the lawsuit. The recalled products were produced between December 2011 and April 2012. As of July 2012, 49 people — 47 individuals in 20 states and two others in Canada — were infected with salmonella from dry dog food produced by Diamond Pet Foods, according to the Center for Disease Control. Joanna Cygan purchased Diamond Pet Food dog food sometime in 2012 and fed her dog from the bags regularly, according to the lawsuit. In August 2012, Cygan began experiencing severe gastrointestinal discomfort, including vomiting and diarrhea, and her condition deteriorated rapidly to the point where she could not move and feared for her life, the suit claims. She was taken to Gottlieb Memorial Hospital in Melrose Park the next day when her temperature climbed to 104 degrees, the suit alleges. Cygan tested positive for a salmonella bacteria infection and the lawsuit claims the Illinois Department of Public Health concluded the source of her infection was the contaminated dog food. The severity of her infection, the suit alleges, complicated the care and treatment of her diabetes, while Cygan used the product “exactly as intended: by feeding her dog daily.” The seven-count lawsuit claims product liability, negligence, fraudulent misrepresentation, and breach of implied warranty, among other things. The Cygans are seeking an undisclosed amount in damages. Diamond Pet Foods has not yet been served with the suit, said Vice President Mark Schell, who declined to comment on it Tuesday evening. Copyright SunTimes

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 24, 2014, 10:24 pm
Cat and Dog Playing Chess Behavior

Fur-kids can be fascinating. And sometimes, a little confusing. In the latest from Dr. Jane, our holistic veterinarian takes a look at a few of the baffling behaviors that make pet parents scratch their head. From your dog circling around the ground just prior to eliminating wastes, to the real reasons behind your cat’s meow, don’t miss this intriguing exposé on creature curiosities. Read on to find out the skinny on common-but-puzzling pet behaviors. We love our companion animals. But sometimes their actions are mystifying, if not altogether baffling. Fortunately, our own Dr. Jane is on-hand to offer some rationale behind some of the most perplexing pet behaviors. Why Does My Dog Stare At Me? Dogs stare at their human companions for any number of reasons. Often, it’s because they want something from you: a tasty snack, a walk around the block, an impromptu game of fetch, etc. Dogs can also stare as a form of attention-seeking behavior. Others are simply indicating neediness for human touch, praise or direction. With more perceptive dogs, they may actually be attempting to read an emotion in our facial expressions. Rest assured that in most cases, staring is considered to be a positive behavior, as most trainers encourage dogs to stare at their pet parents. There are instances, however, where staring at a dog can be considered confrontational or a direct challenge (in the wild, canines stare down their challengers). Staring deeply into a canine’s eyes is an activity that should only be engaged within the bounds of a healthy human-dog relationship. If you aren’t sure, don’t do it before talking it over with an animal behaviorist. Why Does My Dog Turn in Circles Before He Poops? Not all dogs do it, but many pet parents have watched with confusion at a dog who spins in circles, then steps from one back paw to the other before doing his business. No one knows for sure why dogs do this, but there are several theories. Twirling in circles may be evolutionarily beneficial, in that it enables wild dogs to scan the horizon for predators, so as not to be attacked while in a vulnerable position. Other experts believe the walking helps get the bowels moving. Canines have scent glands in their paws, so twirling might be another way for them to spread their scent around, letting other dogs know that the territory has been claimed. Why Does My Cat Lick Me? How many of you have had a cat that licks you incessantly? Well, experts in feline behavior believe that when a cat grooms and licks another cat or a human, they’re conveying trust, affection and caring. These licks are actually ‘kisses’ and a sign that your cat feels happy and safe. When a cat bonds to a human, there can be no limit to feline affection. Why Does My Cat Meow At Me? Anyone who has ever lived with a vocal cat has certainly asked this question. The experts say that when a cat meows at their humans, they’re asking for something. Over time, felines have figured out that meowing gets results, but why is this so effective? Feline behaviorists believe that ‘meowing’ is actually a cat’s way of imitating the cry of a human infant. It’s a behavior that kittens learn early on, as kittens meow to their mothers, often because they’re hungry. I find it interesting that cat meows can vary depending on what they are asking for. For example, the meow to ‘go outside’ can sound very different from the one for ‘feed me’. Experts have also found that cats meow differently to different people. For the most part, when a kitty is making a vocal request, it is out of pleasure and trust that their human companion will fulfill the feline’s every need. If your cat is obsessively meowing and the behavior is increasing, it is always a good idea to get your kitty checked by your local veterinarian. Certain medical conditions, such as hyperthyroidism, can cause excessive vocalization. If you have a question about your pet kid’s behavior, please share it with us in the comments section below! Thank you for all you do to make the world a better place for companion animals. Dr. Jane Bicks

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 19, 2014, 12:26 pm
Dog in Hot Oven

Rayne Nolte was in the parking lot of a Mankato, Minnesota, mall last week when she spotted Roxie, a Yorkie mix, trapped in a car. The temperature was 88 degrees with a heat index of 103, and the car’s owner was gone. You may have found yourself in Rayne’s situation before. Many pet parents believe that cracking a window is enough to keep their dogs cool in the car while they make a quick pit stop—but they couldn’t be more wrong. “Automobile temperatures can very quickly rise to dangerous levels; the average temperature increase in a parked car is 40 degrees, and the majority of this increase occurs in the first 15 to 30 minutes,” says Dr. Louise Murray, Vice President of ASPCA Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital. When it’s 80 degrees outside, your car will be a staggering 114 degrees after 30 minutes! Worse still, dogs can’t cool themselves down as easily as people, and once they overheat, they can suffer extensive organ damage or die. Luckily, Rayne made all the right moves. Follow her lead by taking these simple steps. Step 1: Try to Locate the Pet Parent Roxie’s people were nowhere in sight, so Rayne called mall security, who tried to find Roxie’s family through the loudspeaker. (You can ask most stores to do this.) Step 2: Educate Rayne couldn’t find Roxie’s pet parents, but if you do, explain the dangers of leaving a pet in a hot car. Make sure the pet gets out of the car as soon as possible. Step 3: Call 911 Fourteen states have enacted specific laws that protect dogs in hot cars, as have many municipalities—but even in places lacking such a law, leaving an animal in a hot car may constitute cruelty. Rayne and the mall security officers dialed 911. When the police pulled Roxie from the steamy vehicle, she was very ill but soon on the road to recovery. Step 4: Pat Yourself on the Back Pets are counting on people like you to save their lives. Rayne rescued Roxie just in time, and she made a full recovery! And according to the Mankato Free Press, the pet-sitter who left Roxie in the car was charged with a petty misdemeanor. For more ways to help animals beat the heat, please visit ASPCA’s Pet Care pages.

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 17, 2014, 3:55 pm
Dog Pancreatitis Symptoms and Treatment

My Dog Has Pancreatitis. Can a Raw Dog Food Diet Help? By Robert Mueller, B. Pharm. While it’s true that our dogs are carnivores, it’s important to note that they are also very resourceful scavengers and, as such, can survive eating foods that are essentially detrimental to their health and longevity.  Yes, your dog can live off of kibble and canned pet foods (which are high in carbohydrates) and they may even appear to be quite healthy and happy on this type of diet for the first few years. But here’s something important that I must share with you.  In my 30+ years experience of formulating and feeding raw food diets for zoo carnivores, racing greyhound, and household dogs and cats, I’ve come in contact with many different breeds, conditions, styles of feeding, and opinions from pet parents, vets, and specialists.  Yet one of the things that is constant and remains very clear is the fact that the signs of degenerative disease most often appear in dogs around the age of 5-6 years old that are fed a commercial pet food diet.  Unfortunately dog pancreatitis is one such degenerative disease. What is Canine Pancreatitis? Pancreatitis literally means ‘inflammation of the pancreas’.  A dog that has been diagnosed with pancreatitis is essentially suffering from an inflamed pancreas that is either damaged or stressed, which prevents it from functioning properly. The pancreas has two functions: first, it has a major role in the regulation of the metabolism of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, and secondly, it produces digestive enzymes.  When the pancreas releases enzymes prematurely, they begin to digest the pancreas itself.  This is what we see in cases of pancreatitis in dogs.  Signs of pancreatitis in dogs include vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and abdominal pain.  If pancreatitis is suspected, your veterinarian will most likely conduct a blood test to check to see if your dog’s enzyme levels are elevated.  They may also request a CT scan, ultrasound, or MRI for further confirmation of the disease. Canine pancreatitis can range from mild, moderate, or severe.  If left untreated, this disease can cause various health complications – such as damage to the surrounding organs, heart arrhythmias, sepsis, or Malabsorption Syndrome – some of which can be fatal. What Causes Pancreatitis in Dogs? Canine pancreatitis is usually seen in middle-aged dogs that have spent a lifetime being fed a diet mainly consisting of cooked and processed foods.  Some alternative veterinarians believe it is because high-carbohydrate based pet foods, which are hard for pets to digest, overstress the pancreas, quickly depleting its enzyme reserves. Pets on steroid treatments (which are commonly used to treat allergies in dogs or canine arthritis) are also susceptible to developing pancreatitis, as are overweight or obese dogs.  Dogs that are regularly fed table scraps, which are usually very high in fat, are also susceptible. The common anti-seizure medication, potassium bromide, taken by epileptic dogs to treat epileptic seizures has also been linked to increased instances of pancreatitis in dogs.   However, not all dogs with pancreatitis contract the disease from food or medication.  Certain breeds are more prone to contract the disease, such as Yorkshire terriers and Schnauzers. How to Treat Pancreatitis in Dogs The common treatment for pancreatitis in dogs is the use of medication to treat the various symptoms, such as vomiting and diarrhea.  Conventional veterinarians will usually prescribe a prescription dog food or recommend feeding a bland, low fat dog food.  Unfortunately, these diets are high in carbohydrates and not very appetizing for the animal. It has been my experience that feeding a natural, raw food diet is very beneficial when treating pancreatitis in dogs.  Raw, uncooked foods contain an abundance of live, active enzymes.  These living enzymes help with the digestion process, and also reduce stress on the pancreas that is forced to produce additional enzymes to break down the food. This makes a raw food diet the best dog food for pancreatitis. Again, it’s important to remember that dogs with pancreatitis should be fed a low fat dog food in order to reduce further aggravation to the pancreas.  Stay away from meat proteins that are high in fat, such as lamb and pork.  Instead, feed meats that are lower in fat, like chicken or beef – and if they are raw and uncooked, it is even better. I’ve seen firsthand how effective it is to feed the BARF Diet (aka biologically appropriate raw food) to dogs suffering from pancreatitis.  It improves their appetite, digestion, and absorption of nutrients.  Here’s a recent testimonial from one of my clients who decided to feed raw to her pancreatic dog – you’ll be amazed by her story… “I cant thank you all enough for saving Charlie’s life! Our doggie just turned 7 and he became so ill that he almost didn’t recover. End of July 2013 he was shaky and couldn’t hold his head up or go near water or food. We rushed him to the hospital and discovered he was diabetic with his glucose at 800. The vet said we have 2 choices, to either administer insulin every 12 hours for the rest of his life or have him put down (that was never going to happen). So he stayed in ICU for 7 days and finally came home. Two weeks ago, my mom called and said Charlie is vomiting uncontrollably and has diarrhea also, so I rushed him to his vet and after blood work he was diagnosed with pancreatitis. The range is to be under 200 and his was 839. The vet gave him tons of injections and sent him home with tons of anti-biotics and many other meds. A week later he started vomiting again and I rushed him back to his vet. Blood work was repeated and his pancreatitis range was now at 1000. The vet called me in with the saddest look on his face and asked what my plan was for Charlie. I began hysterically crying as I couldn’t imagine our life without...

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 13, 2014, 4:12 pm
Skinny Dog

© by Bree Weasner, PreciousPets.org LLC A question that is asked of us many times is why their dog just can’t seem to gain weight. Just recently, we were contacted by an owner of a skinny dog who advised us that the dog had been checked out by the veterinarian and got a clean bill of health. Unfortunately, the dog never finishes her food, so what is a pet parent to do to fatten up their dog? The dog is probably just a svelte dog that doesn’t need to be fattened up. Yet, if you insist on trying to put a few pounds on her, these are some possible suggestions: Add a vegetable enzyme such as Prozyme to her food to increase the amounts of nutrients absorbed into her body. (We also recommend Natur’s Way MSE Probiotic Supplements.) Feed her a high-quality puppy food, 3 or 4 times daily. If she is a small dog, add 1/8 tsp. of corn oil; for a large dog, add 1/2 tsp. of corn oil to each meal. Walk her up and down the steps, and give her lots of other exercise to get those muscles bulked up. If you already feed some raw food to your dog, then you will definitely want to learn about Satin Balls Recipe, which will put weight on your healthy dog very quickly. Please tell us your “skinny” story in the comments below. Something you say will surely help at least one other dog owner.

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 10, 2014, 6:47 pm
White Dog Running in Grass

In the summer of one of the most turbulent economic periods in a lifetime, Americans are rediscovering simplicity and frugality.  These days, it’s not uncommon to see a small group playing an impromptu game of Frisbee, or a couple enjoying a nature hike through a local park, or an extended family spending an afternoon in the backyard barbecuing. The summer months provide ample opportunities for outdoor fun, whether your idea of open-air enjoyment is a power-walk with your dog or watching an afternoon storm roll in from the safety of a back porch with your cat.  These activities help us brush away the winter cobwebs, shedding new light on our daily life.  But sometimes, we make discoveries that are not altogether pleasant.  Too often, the thinner, summer coats of our pets can reveal what winter coats have hidden from plain view – reddened skin irritations, possibly the sign of a seasonal or chronic allergy. That’s right … just like humans, pets suffer from allergies.  Allergens can come from any number of sources, including grasses, trees, molds, dust mites and flea bites.  Even their food may contain allergens.  With all of these possible culprits, how can a pet parent learn what’s causing their pet’s allergy? The first step for many of us is to hop online.  We know that information is plentiful on the internet, even if not all of it is trustworthy. That inclination, to try and uncover the reasons ourselves, especially when that impulse is coupled with hard economic times, can lead to a scenario where many pet parents will try to diagnose Fido’s or Fluffy’s allergies on their own, without veterinary assistance.  But the cause of allergies is notoriously difficult to pin down because it so hard to isolate one possible cause from another. If you want to determine whether or not your four-footer is truly suffering from an environmental or food-related allergy, you should have your vet do an evaluation.  They will use either a blood test or a skin test, or perhaps both, to assess what allergens are producing the symptoms. When animals experience allergic reactions, their bodies alter normal hormone production.  Some of the resultant chemical reactions can lead to cellular inflammation, the process bodies use to remove the allergens.  To understand this process, consider the following example:  the common flea bite. Commonly, after a flea bite, there may be swelling and possible irritation (usually itchiness).  But if your dog or cat has a flea allergy, the reaction is a much larger rash with severe itching. This is the body attempting to eliminate the allergen; in this case, flea saliva. So, what’s the best way to nip allergies in the bud? Leading holistic practitioners and natural-care veterinarians have long endorsed foods and supplements rich in omega-3 fatty acids, especially those coming from fish oil, which help inhibit the body’s inflammatory response.  And the amazing properties of omega-3’s don’t end there.  When coupled with omega-6’s derived from a source like flaxseed, a balanced blend of these fatty acids are known to provide much-needed support by helping to strengthen the body’s natural response to allergens.  They do this by enhancing the functions of the immune system and by fortifying the walls of individual cells in the body.  At the same time, omega-3’s also help to protect neurological and blood systems.  If you encounter information disparaging the inclusion of fatty acids in the diets of companion animals – either from online sources, friends or even veterinarians – it may be based upon outdated beliefs about these nutrients. If you are not already feeding your companion a diet rich in omega-3’s like Life’s Abundance, you might consider incorporating into your pet’s diet a supplemental source of omega-3’s, either in chewable tablet form (like Skin & Coat Formula) or in capsule form (many of our customers provide Sealogix for their pets).  Dr. Jane advises against feeding omega-3 supplements in the half-hour immediately before and after a meal, as the precise balance of fats can be thrown off, resulting in diminished absorption of those beneficial nutrients.  Under no circumstances should you add liquid fish oil to dry food. If you believe that your favored feline or precious pup suffers from allergies, please schedule time with your trusted veterinarian to determine the appropriate treatment, and consider incorporating essential fatty acids in your pet’s diet.  By taking a proactive stance now, your pet might be able to avoid allergic reactions in the future.

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 8, 2014, 10:49 pm
Dog Wearing Swamp Cooler

by Dr. Jean Hofve, DVM, OnlyNaturalPet Most of us are out and about much more in the summer, including many of our pets! But summer comes with its own set of potential problems. Common sense, preventive measures and following some simple summer safety tips can prevent illness and injuries for our pets. Here are our Top 10 tips for a safe and happy summer: 1. Prevent Parasites!  Fleas, ticks, mosquitoes, and other parasites are a year-round problem where warm weather is the norm, but in summer they’re practically everywhere. Not only are these pests a nuisance to your dog or cat, but they can carry tapeworms, heartworms, and diseases such as Lyme, Bartonella (often called cat-scratch disease, although dogs actually carry more species of this nasty bacteria than cats), West Nile Virus, leptospirosis, and even bubonic plague. Keeping your pet parasite-free requires a broad approach and vigilance on your part, with a little help from effective preventives. (See our comprehensive article on fleas here. Many natural products are available; talk to your vet about what’s needed for your area. 2. Stay Cool!   Pets can succumb to heatstroke, so be sure that whenever your pet is outdoors, he always has a shelter from the sun, and plenty of fresh water. Add ice cubes or blocks to the water to keep it cool longer. If it’s extremely hot and humid in your area, consider a cooling vest for your dog. Don’t jog or bike with your dog in hot mid-day temperatures; stick to morning and evening. This is especially important for short-nosed (brachycephalic) dogs (Pekes, Pugs, Bulldogs, etc.) or those with double-thick coats or long hair (huskies, shepherds, collies, some terriers and retrievers). Continue Reading  >>

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 5, 2014, 9:58 am
Alternative Therapies for Joint Problems in Pets Video

Like humans, companion animals are living longer. That means more and more dogs and cats must deal with complications from chronic degenerative diseases, such as arthritis. Pain associated with joint problems can more than cramp your pet’s style, it can also stop them in their tracks. Thankfully, our good doctor is here to report on therapies that many remain unaware of – specifically, class 4 laser therapy. In the latest episode of Pet Talk, Dr. Sarah, Staff Veterinarian, Life’s Abundance reveals how these light treatments can make a significant improvement in your pet kid’s quality of life. Recent estimates put the number of dogs suffering from joint disease and chronic pain at nearly ten million, a significant percentage of the population. And, with more and more senior pet kids in American homes, those numbers are likely to remain high. Fortunately, veterinarians have adopted a treatment previously used only for humans, and it’s one that is dramatically improving the quality of life for pet patients. In this episode of Pet Talk, Dr. Sarah explains how laser therapy offers a ray of hope for dogs and cats dealing with the pain associated with degenerative joint disease. Be sure to share this important message on alternative therapies with your fellow pet parents! Original Source:  Life’s Abundance

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Author: Bree
Posted: June 2, 2014, 7:51 pm
My Dog Smells Like Fish

Companion animals and humans share all sorts of similar health problems. And then there are issues that are uniquely canine or feline. For example, have you ever wondered why your pet kid scooches his butt across the carpet, but were afraid to ask?  Ever wonder why your dog smells like fish?  Turns out, this could signal a potentially serious glandular problem. If you’re unfamiliar with this unfortunate yet all-too-common condition, you should definitely check out Dr. Jane’s latest message. Don’t wait another moment, read Dr. Jane’s post now …

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 29, 2014, 4:25 am
Do Not Leave Pets Unattended in Hot Cars

Signing the petition asking Gov. McCrory to sign into law House Bill 612. Bill 612 would make it a crime to leave pets unattended in a car in hot or cold conditions. Petition by Debbie Lovette of Fuquay Varina, NC: “My husband and I were making our way back to our car after shopping when we heard a dog crying pitifully, nonstop in the parking lot. It was 80+ degrees outside and the owner had left the driver’s side window cracked no more than two inches; he had no shade or water. The little Maltese was panting profusely and his beard hair was completely saturated with drool. I instinctively called the 911 to have an officer help us before the dog died from heat exhaustion. When the police officer arrived, he told us that the owner wasn’t doing anything illegal. I was not only appalled, but heartbroken that we could do nothing more than stand idly by while this little dog suffered. Less than three days later, Jennifer King was profiled on the local news after she was charged with killing her two dogs by leaving them in her car while she shopped. I wonder if that little Maltese needlessly suffered the same fate. Please sign this petition and urge Governor McCrory to sign Bill 612 into law. Give our law enforcement officials the authority to save the lives of helpless animals that may die without their help.” You can also call Gov. Pat McCrory: Reach out to Gov. Pat McCrory via phone: (919) 814-2000. And Tweet at @PatMcCroryNC: Copy & Paste: @PatMcCroryNC – I support House Bill 612! To: Gov. Patrick McCrory, North Carolina Please Sign House Bill 612 into Law. Give our law enforcement officials the authority to save the lives of helpless animals that may die without their help. Sincerely, [Your name] PLEASE SIGN Petition here and PLEASE SHARE using sharing link below (Share This +)!

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 28, 2014, 8:10 pm
Pet Medicine Injection

You may know that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) works to keep foods and drugs safe for you and your family, but you may not realize the agency does much of the same for your pets. FDA engages in pharmacovigilance; that is, it monitors reports of adverse drug events (unexpected and sometimes serious side effects) from manufacturers, veterinarians and animal owners. Monitoring this information can result in changes in product labeling to better communicate drug safety information. In addition, the agency maintains a website through which consumers can report safety problems related to pet foods. “People value their pets and may not realize that FDA is constantly on the lookout for signs that there is a medication or food on the market that could result in adverse health events,” says John Baker, a veterinarian and director of the Division of Veterinary Product Safety (DVPS) within the agency’s Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM). Drug Safety In Fiscal Year 2013, FDA received 86,444 reports of adverse drug events from manufacturers, veterinarians, and consumers. Baker explains that while manufacturers are required by law to report adverse drug events, veterinarians and consumers are encouraged to report on a voluntary basis. Instructions for pet owners on reporting can be found at fda.gov. CVM’s pharmacovigilance efforts can lead to: revisions in product labels, “Dear Doctor” letters to veterinarians warning of potential safety issues, client information sheets informing pet owners of important drug information, and articles in veterinary journals. In addition, to get the word out about its pharmacovigilance efforts, FDA reaches out to veterinarians at professional meetings, continuing education courses and conferences. More recently, FDA has begun reaching out to technicians in veterinary practices, too, to encourage them to report issues of concern with veterinary drugs. “We’re suggesting that more vet techs assume the responsibility for adverse event reporting for vets who may be too tied up to do so in the course of a busy day,” Baker says. Monitoring Errors, Pet Medications Even if the medication itself is safe for your pet when given correctly, there are a number of ways medication errors can occur when the prescription is filled or when you dispense it to your pet. In 2008, CVM also began monitoring reports of medication errors and focusing on ways to increase the safe use of those medications by pet owners. According to Linda Kim-Jung, a pharmacist and safety reviewer in DVPS, some causes of medication errors include: drug names that look alike or sound alike; drug labels that look alike; drug dosage devices (such as oral syringes) that are difficult to use because of poor design or unclear directions for use; use of error-prone abbreviations or symbols on written prescriptions; illegible handwriting on prescriptions; and miscommunication when verbally prescribing orders. To help prevent such errors, CVM evaluates drug names, labeling, packaging and product design before a drug is approved, Kim-Jung says. “After a drug goes on the market, we also review adverse drug reports, which sometimes describe medication errors,” Kim-Jung adds. FDA also educates veterinary professionals and the public about veterinary medication errors and ways to minimize and prevent medication errors. For more information, please see the FDA/CVM Veterinary Medication Errors web page. Monitoring Problems with Pet Foods Pet foods also come under FDA’s purview. Lee Anne Palmer, VMD, a veterinarian and safety reviewer at CVM says that consumers may recall that in 2007, FDA confirmed that many dogs and cats in the U.S. were developing kidney failure after eating pet foods contaminated with the chemical compound melamine. Pet food manufacturers voluntarily recalled more than 100 brands of dog and cat food across the nation as a result of an intensive investigation by the FDA. More recently, FDA has asked veterinarians and pet owners to report dog illnesses related to eating chicken, duck, or sweet potato jerky treats, nearly all of which are imported from China. As a result, FDA has received many well-documented case reports that will greatly assist its continuing investigation into pet illnesses and deaths associated with these products. “Although the pet food supply in the U.S. is very safe, we want to be as aware as possible of any problems connected with animals eating pet foods,” Palmer says. “To that end, we encourage consumers to report adverse events they think may be related to pet foods and to provide as much information as possible.” In calendar year 2013, CVM received over 3,000 pet food adverse event and product problem reports. FDA scientists analyze trends over time and may identify clusters of illness tied to a particular product, looking for consistencies in such things as lot numbers or brand names. This kind of information helps FDA target problems and decide whether to collect product samples for laboratory analysis. “Many product recalls have been a direct result of adverse event reporting by animal owners, veterinarians and manufacturers,” Palmer says. Pet owners, veterinarians, and concerned citizens can report complaints about pet food products electronically through the agency’s Safety Reporting Portal. The online questionnaire asks for information about brand name, product type, package size, lot number and use-by dates. Petowners and veterinarians can also report by calling the FDA District Offices. Palmer says that lot numbers and use-by dates are particularly important in helping FDA track down potential problem sources. Consumers can also find the answers to frequently asked questions about pet food safety reporting at fda.gov. This article appears on FDA’s Consumer Updates page, which features the latest on all FDA-regulated products.

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 22, 2014, 1:36 pm
Petco Will Stop Selling Pet Treats From China

Petco to Stop Selling Pet Treats Made in China Yes, you read correctly!  I am still in shock!  Now let’s see how many other pet chains will follow, and who are brave enough to announce it to the world!  Please share your thoughts below in the comments! ABC News is reporting: Petco said Tuesday that it will stop selling dog and cat treats made in China by the end of this year due to ongoing fears that the imported treats are making pets sick. Investigators at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration haven’t been able to figure out why pets are getting ill from the treats since the agency began receiving reports of illnesses in 2007. In an update last week, the FDA said it has received more than 4,800 complaints of pet illnesses and more than 1,000 reports of dog deaths after eating Chinese-made chicken, duck or sweet potato jerky treats. The FDA said tests found antiviral drug amantadine in some samples of imported chicken jerky treats sold a year or more ago, but doesn’t think it caused the illnesses. The FDA said it will continue to investigate. Petco said that shoppers have asked it to stop selling treats from China. The pet food retailer said it is switching them out for treats that are made in the U.S., New Zealand, Australia and South America. It already began cutting down on the amount of Chinese-made treats three years ago, said Petco Vice President John Sturm. It expects to completely get rid of them in all its 1,300 stores by the end of this year. The San Diego company doesn’t sell any pet food made in China. Rival PetSmart Inc., which is based in Phoenix and also runs about 1,300 stores, didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. Source:  ABC News

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 20, 2014, 10:40 pm
Dog with Treat

Pet Jerky Recall 2014: Treats Lead To 4,800 Complaints, Including Over 1,000 Dead Dogs And 3 People Who Fell Ill The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are teaming up to investigate over 1,000 dog deaths and three people who fell ill after consuming  chicken, duck and sweet potato pet jerky imported from China. Following the FDA’s last update back on October 22, 2013, 4,800 complaints of illness, some including multiple pets in one household, have been reported to the agency involving 5,600 dogs, 24 cats and three people. According to the FDA’s latest report, around 60 percent of the cases were tied to gastrointestinal and liver disease, 30 percent kidney or urinary disease, and 10 percent that included neurologic, dermatologic, and immunologic symptoms. Approximately, 15 percent of kidney and urinary cases also tested positive for Fanconi syndrome, a rare kidney disease tied to reported cases of pet and human illnesses. The FDA has still been unable to identify an exact cause for the sudden outbreak. The FDA and CDC are collaborating on a study tracking food consumed by sick dogs reported to the agency compared to what healthy dogs ate. Researchers hope the analysis will be able to tell what type of food (human or pet food) is making pets and people sick. The FDA has already performed 26 post mortem examinations on 26 dogs reported to the agency since October 2013. It was discovered that 13 of these dogs had consumed pet jerky and 11 showed signs of kidney disease while two were identified with gastrointestinal disease. “The agency continues to review case records, test treat samples from reported cases, screen tissue, blood, urinary and fecal samples, and communicate with the attending veterinarians and pet owners to thoroughly investigate select cases,” the FDA said in a statement. “Because of the volume of information received in response to the Dear Veterinarian letter, the agency has not completed an update to our online case spreadsheets. FDA plans to complete and post these updates in the coming months.” Of the three humans who fell ill as a result of consuming pet jerky, two were toddlers who ingested it accidently and one adult who was snacking on the pet treat for unknown reasons, NBC News reported. One of the toddlers was diagnosed with a salmonella infection and the other suffered from a gastrointestinal illness and fever, similar to the symptoms experienced by dogs in the same household. The adult reportedly suffered from symptoms including nausea and headache. “Testing of jerky pet treats from China has also revealed the presence of the drug amantadine in some samples containing chicken,” the FDA added. “These samples were from jerky pet treats that were sold a year or more ago. Amantadine is an antiviral that is FDA-approved for use in people. It has also been used in an extra-label manner (using an approved drug in a way that isn’t listed on the label) in dogs for pain control, but FDA prohibited its use in poultry in 2006.” Source:  Medical Daily

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 19, 2014, 3:30 pm
Bravo Pet Food Recall

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – May 14, 2014 – Manchester, CT – Bravo is recalling select lots and product(s) of Bravo Pet Food because they have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. Listeria monocytogenes is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women. However, healthy cats and dogs rarely become sick from Listeria. Animals ill with Listeria will display symptoms similar to the ones listed above for humans. People who have concerns about whether their pet has Listeria should contact their veterinarian. The recalled product was distributed nationwide to distributors, retail stores, internet retailers and directly to consumers. The product can be identified by the batch ID code (best used by date) printed on the side of the plastic tube or on a label on the box. The recalled products are as follows: 1) These products are being recalled because they may have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. PRODUCT: RAW FOOD DIET BRAVO! BEEF BLEND FOR DOGS AND CATS (Made in New Zealand) All 2lb., 5lb., and 10lb. tubes Product Numbers: 52-102, 52-105, 52-110 Best Used By Date: 10/10/15 or earlier PRODUCT: RAW FOOD DIET BRAVO! BEEF BLEND FOR DOGS AND CATS (Made in New Zealand) All 2lb., 5lb., and 10lb. tubes Product Numbers: 52-102, 52-105, 52-110 Best Used By Date: 10/10/15 or earlier 2) These products are being recalled out of an abundance of caution because while they did not test positive for pathogens, they were manufactured in the same manufacturing facility or on the same day as products that did test positive. PRODUCT: RAW FOOD DIET BRAVO! LAMB BLEND FOR DOGS AND CATS (Made in New Zealand) All 2lb., 5lb., and 10lb. tubes Product Numbers: 42-102, 42-105, 42-110 Best Used By Date: 10/10/15 or earlier PRODUCT: RAW FOOD DIET BRAVO! LAMB BASIC FOR DOGS AND CATS (Made in New Zealand) 2lb. tubes Product Number: 42-202 Best Used By Date: 10/10/15 or earlier PRODUCT: RAW FOOD DIET BRAVO! BEEF & BEEF HEART FOR DOGS AND CATS (Made in New Zealand) 5lb. tubes Product Number: 53-130 Best Used By Date: 10/10/15 or earlier PRODUCT: RAW FOOD DIET BRAVO! 100% PURE & NATURAL PREMIUM GRASS-FED BUFFALO FOR DOGS AND CATS (Manufactured by: Bravo! Manchester, CT) NET WT 2LBS (32 OZ) .91KG (Tubes) Product Number: 72-222 Best Used By Date: 1/7/16 PRODUCT: BRAVO! TURKEY BALANCE FORMULA (Manufactured by: Bravo! Manchester, CT) NET WT 2 LBS (32 OZ) .09KG, Chub (tube) Product Number: 31-402 Best Used By Dates: 1/7/16 and 2/11/16 NET WT 5 LBS (80 OZ) 2.3KG, Chub (tube) Product Number: 31-405 Best Used By Dates: 1/7/16 and 2/11/16 PRODUCT: RAW FOOD DIET BRAVO! LAMB BLEND FOR DOGS AND CATS (Manufactured by: Bravo! Manchester, CT) 5 LBS (80 OZ) 2.3KG, Chub (tube) Product Number: 42-105 Best Used By Date: 2/11/16 This voluntary recall has been issued because the FDA has reported an independent lab detected the bacteria in a sample during a recent review. The company has received a limited number of reports of dogs experiencing nausea and diarrhea that may be associated with these specific products. The company has received no reports of human illness as a result of these products. Bravo discontinued all manufacturing in New Zealand on October 10, 2013. Bravo will immediately start working with distributors and retailers to properly dispose of any affected product left on freezer shelves. The company will also be announcing the recall to pet owners to ensure they dispose of any affected product that has been purchased. Bravo is issuing this action out of an abundance of caution and sincerely regrets any inconvenience to pet owners as a result of this announcement. The recalled product should not be sold or fed to pets. Pet owners who have the affected product at home should dispose of this product in a safe manner (example, a securely covered trash receptacle). They can return to the store where purchased and submit the Product Recall Claim Form available on the Bravo website www.bravopetfoods.com for a full refund or store credit. More information on the Bravo recall can also be found at www.bravopetfoods.com, or call toll free (866) 922-9222. Source:  FDA Recalls

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 15, 2014, 2:47 am
Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother’s Day to all the Doggie & Kitty Moms out there as well as ALL the Human Moms, from all of us at PreciousPets.org!

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 11, 2014, 12:55 pm
Poisoned Meatballs Left for Dogs

More servings of poisoned meat treats for dogs apparently left on street in San Francisco This time, the targeted area is the Sunset District. A woman found pill-stuffed meat treats while walking her dog. There they were, all served up on a plate near a San Francisco street corner. Dog trainer Shura Kelly was walking her dogs with a friend Monday when they came upon a white dish laden with odd-shapped meat pieces with pills stuffed inside. The plate also contained a tea light candle and quarters. “It’s bizarre,” Kelly told the San Francisco Chronicle. The city by the bay has already suffered a series of canine poison scares begining last summer when someone left meatballs filled with strychinine in two districts of San Francisco. Those cruel deposits killed a 7-year-old dachshund named Oskar. In February, police found 35 balls of meat in the Twin Peaks area, nestled in shrubs and bushes and set on curbs — places dogs like to sniff out during walks. Monday’s find has been sent for testing to determine what substance is in the pills.   Source: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/poisoned-meat-treats-designed-dogs-apparently-found-san-francisco-article-1.1781773#

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 8, 2014, 3:43 pm
First Monthly Dose Heartworm Preventative

The beginning of Spring is when veterinarians inspect dogs & cats for heartworm organisms and put pets on heartworm prevention medicines. Most vets suggest giving your pet a monthly or day-to-day pill as a heartworm preventative, but this can be dangerous as the drug for heartworm is a chemical. The ingredients in this medicine include a chemical pesticide, which can cause illness when administered via heartworm pill every day or month. The side effects of treatment are dangerous and can cause harm to your pet. Learn more about Natural Heartworm Prevention: www.preciouspets.org/natural-heartworm-prevention Always have your vet do a heartworm test before beginning any preventive protocol. The numbers on the maps below represent the Months!   Natural Heartworm Prevention: www.preciouspets.org/natural-heartworm-prevention    

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 7, 2014, 12:32 pm
Service Dogs Help Diabetes Patients

You’d do anything for your four-legged friends, but sometimes it’s the animals that care for us.  Watch how the Bay Area’s amazing service dogs at Dogs 4 Diabetics learn their life-saving skills and to see these miracle dogs in action. You won’t believe what they can do! CONCORD, Calif. (KGO) — Service dogs have been helping the disabled and visually impaired for decades. But now an innovative program started in the Bay Area is now training dogs to help another group of people manage a potentially dangerous disease. As a diabetic, Suzi Powers has to stay aware of both her blood sugar levels and her food intake. But now she’s hoping a new live-in coach will be able to help. He’s a black lab by the name of Laser, who can sense changes in Powers’ blood stream. “Throughout the day, sugars going up and down, he’ll let me know when I’m started to trend down,” Powers explained to ABC7 News. Full Story: http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/health&id=9528505#&cmp=ggp-kgo-article-9528505

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 6, 2014, 12:53 pm
Kitty Cat's First Shell Game

If you think most cats aren’t smart, watch this adorable kitty, whose name is Kido!  Kido should be nominated for this week’s most talented and adorable precious pet!  Watch this smart kitty how he plays a shell game with his owner, and how he wins every single time! Kido’s owner writes:  “I know all cats and dogs are smart. The main purpose of sharing this video is not to show how smart Kido is, but to share my joy of knowing that Kido was willing to play shell game with me and he got it right, regardless of how he did it. If you are a pet owner, you know how hard it is to get them to do something, especially on the first time (without previous training). So I am proud of him regardless what harsh comments you may provide. Kido was abandoned twice in the first 6 months of his life. When he was about to be listed on a shelter’s kill-list, I met him and he has become the love of my life since then. I could never understand how people would abandon a sweet and fun kitty like Kido. It’s their loss and I hope they will realize. I hope all homeless animals can find their forever loving home.” Kido even has his own Facebook page! http://www.facebook.com/kido.li.7 So, do you think your cat is smarter than Kido?   Please let us know in the comments below!  

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 5, 2014, 7:56 pm
Obie the Obese Dachshund

If you ever thought your pup was ‘pleasantly plump’, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet!  Meet Obie the Dachshund, who, one year ago, weighed in at a whopping 77 pounds!   The average Dachshund weighs a maximum of 32 pounds. Obie was more than twice the normal weight for these breeds.  It was reported that Obie was nearly fed to death by his elderly owners, who eventually gave him up because of their own waning health. But have no fear. He’s been adopted by Portland-based veterinary technician Nora Vanetta. After months of diet, exercise and a tummy tuck, Obie has already lost 40 pounds, with about 7 more pounds to go! WARNING:  This video may be disturbing for some viewers, BUT the story does have a very happy ending…or should I say, a very happy New Beginning!  Read full story below! Full Story: http://www.today.com/pets/obese-no-more-obie-helps-other-dogs-shape-6C9773380 Could your dog stand to lose a few pounds?  We highly recommend Life’s Abundance Weight Loss Formula for Adult Dogs, a safe, natural, never-recalled, made in the USA formula, where you feed your dog according to his/her present weight, and NOT the weight he/she should be!   Click here to learn more  >>

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 4, 2014, 3:16 pm
Hammond Cop Allegedly Abuses K9 Partner

COP K9 ABUSE? A police officer in Indiana has been placed on leave after this video surfaced on YouTube. It shows some pretty rough treatment of his K9 companion. The local mayor called the video “shocking and disturbing.” We’ve posted it in the link, but we’ll warn you that there is extremely strong profanity in the YouTube video. How does this make you feel?  Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! ***Proceed with caution*** Full Story: http://www.myfoxtampabay.com/story/25408186/hammond-cop-allegedly-abuses-k-9-partner

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Author: Bree
Posted: May 2, 2014, 10:22 pm
Dr. Sarah, Life's Abundance Staff Veterinarian

by Dr. Sarah, Life’s Abundance Staff Veterinarian This month’s episode of Pet Talk with Dr. Sarah is just for felines. Turns out, that myth about finicky appetites doesn’t mean they won’t consume things that can damage their little bodies. You may think you know what human foods a cat should and should not eat, but we guarantee that some of these will surprise you. We’re talking about more than just avoiding stomach upset; some of these ingestibles may prove lethal to a cat. Because your cat’s long-term wellness is our primary concern, Dr. Sarah is throwing in an extra ‘must-avoid’ product, along with info about what constitutes a truly balanced diet for optimal kitty health. To learn which people foods should be kept safely out of kitty’s reach, click here to watch the latest episode of Pet Talk now!

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 27, 2014, 6:55 pm
Clifford's Explosive Diarrhea

When Your Pet Has Diarrhea “Diarrhea is one of the most common medical symptoms of cats and dogs,” says Dr. Sheila McCullough, veterinarian at the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine Teaching Hospital. “An owner’s first reaction to diarrhea should be to note when it started, how often it is happening, how much your pet is straining to defecate, and what the character of the diarrhea is–bloody, black, mucous-like, or otherwise. In addition, you should try to recall unusual items that your pet may have eaten.” Diarrhea occurs when an accumulation of dissolved substances in the intestine causes excess water to move into the intestine. “This accumulation may be a result of decreased absorption of food, increased secretion of electrolytes by the intestine, or both. An example of overload of an absorbable solute is fructose overload. For instance, if you eat three pounds of grapes, an hour later you may be in trouble,” says Dr. Aslam Hassan, professor of gastrointestinal physiology at the college. Fructose needs help to be absorbed into the body. These helpers come in the form of carriers. If there is too much fructose, carriers may not be numerous enough to be effective. A lot of fructose will be retained in the bowel causing diarrhea. If your pet eats something it cannot absorb–i.e., adult cats and dogs  can’t absorb milk sugar lactose–the overload of solutes in the intestine may cause diarrhea. If not much intestine is functioning, there is a decreased amount of area to absorb food.   This decreased surface area can be caused by surgical removal of a part of the bowel, diseased state of the bowel, or decreased interaction time between the intestine and food.  Mucosa–the lining of the intestine–needs time to absorb what is ingested. Diseases can cause more rapid movement of food through the intestine. Veterinarians may suggest motility modifiers (drugs that can increase or decrease movement of food through the intestines) to help control the diarrhea for 24 to 48 hours until diagnoses can be made. Motility modifiers should not be used long term. “For example, if  your pet has E. coli-induced diarrhea, motility modifiers will retain the toxin that E. coli secretes and may cause life-threatening distention of the bowel,” explains Dr. Hassan. It is important to realize that a high frequency of bowel movements is not synonymous with diarrhea. Your pet can have more than one bowel movement a day; as long as the amount of fecal water is normal, that’s OK. When diarrhea begins in your pet, notify your veterinarian for help in deciding whether you should wait the diarrhea out or make an appointment to have the problem assessed. This is especially significant in young pets. “If your puppy or kitten who has not had its vaccination series gets diarrhea, you should call your veterinarian right away,” says Dr. McCullough.  “Viral diarrheas, such as parvo virus, could kill your young pet. Puppies and kittens dehydrate very quickly.” Veterinarians can initiate rehydration and fluid support. For diarrhea in adult pets, Dr. McCullough suggests withholding food for 12 to 24 hours.  “Then start your pet on small frequent meals of boiled hamburger and rice and see if the diarrhea stops.” However, if blood, foreign objects, or greasy feces are being passed, you should make an appointment with your veterinarian. Chronic diarrhea with sustained weight loss needs to be assessed by your veterinarian as well. “We need to find out whether  weight loss is associated with diarrhea or something else,” explains Dr. McCullough. Coming home to a pet unable to control bowel movements because of diarrhea is not a pleasant experience, as most pet owner’s know. When Dr. McCullough’s own animals have diarrhea, she puts them in a room with a linoleum floor that can easily be cleaned. Crating your dog with diarrhea may lead to a bigger mess. Not only will pets potentially cover themselves with their own feces, but pets may also direct the diarrheal spray outside of the cage and damage household items. Dr. McCullough suggests these tips to prevent diarrhea in pets: Don’t feed pets people food. People food may cause diarrhea as well as pancreatitis.  Keep pets away from foreign objects they can swallow. Get puppies and kittens vaccinated and keep your pets away from unvaccinated animals. Keep pets on a steady balanced diet; ask your veterinarian what the best diet is for your pet. Have your pet’s stool checked every year to control parasites. Feces consistency and content are clues veterinarians rely on to tell them what might be occurring with your pet. You can use these clues as well if you watch your pet’s feces for changes. Also, when you do bring your pet to the veterinarian, bring a fresh stool sample.  For further information about diarrhea in pets, call your local veterinarian. Article Courtesy of College of Veterinary Medicine Illinois NOTE:  If you’ve recently changed your pet’s diet and are experiencing loose stools, please read the article on How to Properly Introduce Your Pet to a New Diet here! Product Recommendations:  RuniPoo Relief, Scour-Aid and Natural Defense

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 24, 2014, 5:34 pm
Dog Proof Gardens

We all love our dogs, but people who also love gardens are oftentimes challenged with trying to have both. Dogs own their yards, and that means they fly through flower beds, dig holes and pull up our prized roses. It’s all perfectly natural for our best friend, but it certainly causes the human tons of frustration. Many people want both and they can have it, with a little ingenuity! Start with a fence, but make it a stylish one. A white picket fence, a beautiful wood privacy fence or pleasing to the eye wrought iron all make attractive perimeter fences and will harmonize with any garden. If your looking for inexpensive, try deer fencing, which installs easily and appears invisible once it is up. This makes it easy to protect already existing landscaping. It’s important not to plant right next to the fence. There should be at least a two foot strip along the inside of the fence. Dogs like to patrol their property and if you plant next to the fence you will consistently have trampled plants. What you can do both inside and outside the fence is have large shrubs like burning bush to help camouflage the fence. We have metal fencing for our dog area and we have burning bush and lilac trees on the outside of the fence. After owning the house for twenty years, we have some really nice sized trees and bushes that hide a lot of our fencing and make it more pleasing to the eye. Within the fenced in yard, there are several things you can do to protect your plants from the dog. You can weave the invisible deer fencing through existing bushes and gardens so your dog does not have access to them, or you can put a nice low fence to be a pretty barrier and train the dog to stay on the right side of the fence. This might take awhile, but with a little patience and not too much frustration, your dog can learn that the “other side of the fence” is off limits. Dogs are natural diggers and it is just plain fun for them, as well as providing a cool spot to lay in to get away from the heat. Relocating a specially designated spot for digging is a great idea. An ideal spot is under the deck. This provides escape from the heat where dogs can dig to their hearts content, and you can even but shrubs around the deck to hide the spot. I love water gardens and fountains, but you need to be careful for the sake of the dog. Make sure you have a shallow rim all the way around the inside of the pond in which you can place flat rocks and low plant to give the dogs an exit. Because no matter how hard you try, there are some dogs who were made for water and will jump in no matter what you do. If you want a cool spot for the dog and aren’t worried about being in Home and Garden, you can get a kiddie pool specifically for the dog. Rest the pool against the edge of the digging deck or a patio and then you can plant house plants and flowering plants in containers around the rest of the pool to hide it from the neighbors. Your garden will need paths and if its in the dogs area, plan for dog friendly paths. Mulch makes great path material or nice large, flat rocks that look great in a natural garden setting. Be sure to keep compost piles out of the area the dog is allowed in order to avoid dog in compost problems, and be sure to use pet friendly products for you lawn. Trees help shade the yard and give the dog a cool place to lie and watch squirrels and birds. Make sure you do not weed your garden in the presence of your dog because it will give your dog the idea that pulling up plants is a good thing. The same goes with planting because your dog will get the idea that digging is good. You need to do these things when the dog is inside taking a nap. You certainly can make the effort and have a nice garden and lawn and a dog. However, be realistic and do not expect a perfect lawn. Dogs do tend to cause brown spots when they urinate on the grass. You can control it a little by training you dog to eliminate in one specific area in the yard. But it will still happen. We always have to give up that Lawn and Garden perfection when we choose to have a dog.

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 20, 2014, 2:26 pm
Garlic Benefits

Garlic Benefits for Dogs:  Is Garlic Good for Dogs? Like many powerful herbs, garlic has been tested for a vast array of medical conditions.  The following list includes the most common applications for dogs. Garlic has a high sulfur content, and it is thought that the sulfur, excreted through the dog’s skin, repels fleas, ticks, mites and other biting insects.  The sulfur excretion can also help rid the dog of bacterial or fungal microbes that may be present on the skin, helping to heal itching, irritated skin. Fleas aren’t the only pests put off by garlic.  Worms in the digestive tract are repelled by garlic.  In a dog that has had repeated infestations of worms, garlic can be fed once or twice a week as a preventative. Garlic is also a potent anti-fungal agent.  It can be used topically on fungal skin infections. Sulfur excretion also occurs in the dog’s lungs, making garlic a strong expectorant.  It encourages the expulsion of irritants such as dust, spores and pollen from the lungs, and helps kill any bacteria that may be present in the lungs.  This makes it a perfect remedy for hay fever, seasonal allergies, kennel cough, or any other respiratory problems. Garlic also kills bacteria internally.  Any conditions or infections that are caused by bacteria, internal and external, can be treated with garlic supplementation.  It can also help prevent wounds from becoming infected. Owners of diabetic dogs, take note: Animal and human studies have shown that garlic can reduce blood-sugar levels.  Researchers noted an increase in serum insulin and improvement in liver glycogen storage after garlic administration. In humans, garlic’s most publicized successes have concerned its ability to lower blood cholesterol and prevent blood clotting.  Because it improves circulation, dogs who suffer from arthritis will benefit from periodic garlic supplementation. Garlic also promotes the production of white blood cells, thus strengthening the dog’s resistance to infection of all kinds.  That makes it a powerful treatment for dogs with low or compromised immunity (such as hunting dogs that are worked heavily in cold and wet weather, or show dogs that are taken to numerous shows or competitions).  This would include exhaustion and other nonspecific conditions associated with a subtle decline in health.  Garlic can help bolster an immune response following exposure to strange dogs. Immune system support is also helpful for newborn puppies and their mothers.  In this case, a smaller dose of garlic would be fed to the mother.  Garlic is passed through her milk to the puppies, benefiting both by fighting infections.  Due to this antibacterial action, as well as its ability to support digestive function, garlic combats diarrhea in puppies. Human studies have demonstrated that allicin, the ‘active ingredient’ in garlic, increases the levels of two important antioxidant enzymes in the blood: catylase and glutathione peroxidase, confirming the antioxidant and free-radical scavenging potential of allicin. Garlic has been shown to help re-colonize bacteria in the gut, so garlic supplementation can be beneficial for any dog that has been treated with conventional antibiotics, which can wipe out ‘good’ gut bacteria. Garlic is widely thought to have anti-cancer properties.  The research is promising enough that garlic is recommended for any dog with cancer. If you feed dried garlic, whether in a powdered or granulated form, the important thing is to get garlic that has not been heat-treated.  Also, if you are taking garlic tablets, it is important to know whether your brand is actually dissolving after you take it.   Fresh garlic is the least expensive option, and is the most potent form of the herb.  But not everyone is willing to spend time chopping it up for their dogs to eat, and not all dogs will eat it, even if it is mixed into their food.  You may have to experiment a little to determine which form is most palatable for your dog.  The fussiest eaters may benefit from pure, cold-processed garlic oil, which several manufacturers produce in gelatin capsules. Begin with a low dose, introducing garlic in increasing amounts over a week or two until you are feeding the entire dose.  According to Self, an average dose of garlic for large dogs should be about one fresh, crushed garlic clove per day.  If you feed pure, cold-pressed garlic powder or granules, the equivalent is about a half-teaspoon.  The suggestion for medium-sized dogs is half a clove (or 1/4 teaspoon of powder); for small dogs, give just a quarter clove (or a pinch or two of the powder). As with any drug or herb, it’s important to watch for any sensitivities particular in your dog’s body.  Some herbalists say that a high daily dose of fresh garlic, given for long periods of time, can deplete the intestinal flora.  If the condition you are treating is seasonal, or if the treatment is successful, slowly decrease the dose after the dog improves and maintains the improvement. If you are looking for a natural garlic-based flea and tick preventative during this season, we recommend Flea Free.  Click here to learn all about this popular product line, and how it can help your pets, and even YOU!  My Boxers are given crushed garlic (from the supermarket) and Flea Free Food Supplement, alternately. If you’d rather stay away from garlic to begin with, but still ensure your pet is protected against fleas and ticks, we highly recommend PetZone Flea & Tick Protector.   PetZone Flea & Tick Protector will replace your once-a-month flea and tick medication, and is safe for ALL animals of ALL ages, including humans.  Remember, garlic is NOT safe for puppies, kittens and nursing mommas, but our Flea & Tick Protector is!   Just attach to your baby’s ID tag on his/her collar and forget about it until it’s time to replace!  Learn more about PetZone Flea & Tick Protector.

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 17, 2014, 3:19 pm
Changes Ahead for the Pet Food Industry

With yet another pet food recall last week — this time it was the two-pound, five-pound, and 15-pound bags of Abady Highest Quality Maintenance and Growth Formula for Cats because of possible Salmonella contamination — pet owners have to wonder why premium pet foods continue to have recalls. If you have a pet then you surely know how difficult it can be to choose a quality pet food these days. You can no longer simply grab a “good” food off the shelf. Since the pet food recalls in 2007, being a responsible pet owner typically includes learning to read pet food labels — knowing ingredients, looking at the guaranteed analysis, and being familiar with the jargon used by the industry. Lots of people take it farther and want to know where ingredients are sourced, who makes the food, and other nitty gritty information about recipes. No matter. As careful as people have been in choosing pet foods in recent years, there have still been recalls affecting premium brands. How can that be? continue reading  >>

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 15, 2014, 7:12 pm
Password Reminder

If you haven’t heard yet, there’s a new and dangerous bug called the Heartbleed bug that is being called the most dangerous internet security threat ever seen on the internet, AND it affects YOU, the pet parents…and I’ll get to this in a moment! This isn’t a traditional virus, trojan or worm that infects our computers that our computer anti-virus programs will catch, but worse!  In simple terms, it infects the web host itself, such as Facebook, Google, Pinterest, Yahoo and others.  This bug is already there (at these sites) just waiting for you to log in.   It already has your information and passwords, and it is just confirming what it already knows to get even more info from you.  Once they have your passwords, they are sold ASAP.  This is a nightmare and the site remains compromised until they fix this security issue.  If you use any popular internet service such as Facebook, Pinterest, Google, Yahoo, GoDaddy and several others, and you haven’t changed your passwords for these accounts in a while, you need to change them ASAP!  But BEFORE you do, check to see if any of the services you use on a regular basis are on the current Heartbleed Hit List, which will also give you more detailed information on what, exactly, the Heartbleed bug really is. If sites you visit frequently that require you to login are not on the Heartbleed Hit List and you want to be sure they’re safe BEFORE you login, you can check them individually at the Heartbleed test site! Now to pet parents…it is a known fact that most pet parents will simply use their pet’s name as their password, across multiply sites too (including financial sites)!  Why?…because it’s so easy to remember!  Why is this so dangerous?…because these types of passwords are just too easy for hackers to crack, which can lead to fraud and even identity theft!  Tips & Tricks for Painlessly Changing Your Passwords For maximum security, passwords should be a minimum of 7 characters, a mix of upper and lower case, a few symbols, and a sense of humor.  Also, do not use the same password across multiply sites, especially really important and sensitive sites (like you don’t want to use the same password you use for Facebook to be used for your bank).  So are you ready to jump out the window yet at the thought of having to change all your passwords?  Don’t!!!  Here’s a great tip to secure your passwords, and you can even still use your pet’s name!  

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 14, 2014, 3:24 pm
Stop Horrific Dog Meat Trade

Chinese activists recently stood up to dog meat traders and rescued 900 dogs bound for slaughter for human consumption. Many of the dogs were clearly stolen family pets, even wearing tags and collars: Huskies, German Shepherds, Poodles and the like, many extremely ill and dying from the slave ship like conditions of the truck and cages. One woman found her lost Golden Retriever on the truck, but was told she could not take him home unless she paid off the trader. The activists were beaten and after a 50 hour standoff finally rescued all of the dogs. However, by that time some dogs had died and the activists were forced to bury them at the scene. For the entire story including updates, please see://www.dogheirs.com/lucybrucey/posts/2886-animal-rights-activisits-in-china-are-fighting-for-the-lives-of-927-dogs And see also video: Chinese ARA’S rescued 900 dogs,many were clearly stolen family pets! The world has watched these pictures and videos in astonishment that in this day and age people could be so fiendish and barbaric. Everyday dogs and cats are dying in the smashed cages on the trucks, denied food and water for days, then skinned alive in front of the other dogs to increase terror and suffering. Some of the dogs give birth while in the cages and many pups die because of crushing, filthy conditions or simply falling out of the cages. Workers throw the cages to the ground when unloading the trucks, breaking the bones of the dogs. A recent undercover operation showed the skinned animals actually able to still lift their heads after being thrown into a pile of other dogs. The fact that China has absolutely no laws for the care and humane treatment of animals is outrageous. We ask you, President Xi Jinping, to put animal cruelty laws in place now and to ban all aspects of the dog meat and dog and cat fur trades. The world is watching. We stand with the brave activists who saved the 900 dogs in Anwen town. (Text is sourced from the petition below) Please SIGN THE PETITION to support the Chinese activists without fail at: https://www.change.org/petitions/stop-horrific-dog-meat-trade-demand-china-make-animal-cruelty-laws Multiply your impact into dozens more by sharing this petition (use Sharing links below) and recruiting people you know to sign.  Thank you!

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 12, 2014, 3:32 pm
Dog Straining to Urinate

Holistic Remedies for Urinary Tract Infections in Pets© by Bree Weasner, PreciousPets.org LLC Urinary tract infections (UTI) in pets, like humans, are not uncommon, but they are uncomfortable. A UTI occurs when bacteria makes it way into the bladder or urethra, causing symptoms like painful urination. If a urinary tract infection is not caught early, it can spread to the kidneys and lead to dangerous complications for your pet. Holistic and non-Holistic veterinarians will both treat a UTI with antibiotics, but holistic vets take it a step further. They use various natural remedies to not only cure the infection, but to strengthen the immune system and correct any bacterial imbalances to prevent further sickness or reoccurring urinary tract infections. Knowing the warning signs of a potential UTI will help you to get your dog or cat medical care right away! So what are the signs to look for? 1. Blood in urine2. Dog or cat may cry or strain during urination3. Urine has a abnormal odor4. Your dog expresses the need to go outside to do his business, but has frequent accidents inside How can you help your pet? You can safely, naturally and effectively treat both the causes and symptoms of a UTI or bladder infection with UTI-Free, a herbal and homeopathic remedy. UTI-Free keeps your pet free of urinary tract infections without the use of antibiotics. You can also reduce irritation in your pet with herbs and herbal tinctures like Goldenrod Horsetail Compound to sooth a disturbed urinary system. Dogs less than 15lbs should have ½ dropper-full of the tincture twice a day until they are well. Bigger dogs can have 1-2 droppers-full per day. Simply mix the tincture into their food. Alcohol tinctures are not recommended for cats, so herbal tea is the best choice for our feline friends. Look for herbal combinations that include goldenrod, parsley, marsh mallow root, horsetail and elderberry (Urinary Tea Blend). One teaspoon of cooled tea three times a day is sufficient for cats. Cantharis works to relieve pain in your pet and will ease discomfort when urinating. Two or three 30C pellets at the first sight of infection and repetition of the treatment once every hour for three hours. Your pet does not need to swallow the pellets, just put it in his/her mouth so it can be absorbed. If no change within 12 hours, call your vet. Humans often use cranberry to treat UTIs, and it works well for pets, too. Cranberry stops bacteria and it acidifies urine, which stops bacteria from thriving. Giving your pet one capsule of Cranberry for every 20 pounds they way works well, as does Uva Ursi. Another way to treat and prevent urinary tract infections is to boost your pet’s immune system with Transfer Factor XF, Cordyvant and ThymuPro. This blend of proprietary ingredients is a powerful supplement that activates and enhances the immune system’s ability to react to pathogens. Vitamin C is a natural anti-inflammatory that is good for the bladder. Pets under 15 lbs should be given 250mg Vitamin C 2x a day. Pets 15-50 pounds should have 50mg twice a day, and bigger dogs may have up to 1000mg twice a day. Vitamin C may cause diarrhea in your pet, so use a buffered form like Ester C. While antibiotics kill infection, they also kill beneficial bacteria. Giving your pet a probiotic that contains Lactobacillus Bifidus will help to restore the natural balance of bacteria. Pets under 20 pounds can have 1/8 tsp. twice a day. Larger pets may have ¼ tsp. twice a day. Yogurt works well, too. Switching to a natural food like Life’s Abundance and ridding your pet of chemical-filled commercial pet food will help to make them healthier overall as natural pet food does not contain additives and preservatives. Making sure that your pet always has clean filtered/spring water is important as chlorine is not good for your pet and may turn them off to water. If your pet struggles with drinking a lot of water, moisten their food with water or chicken broth.   If your dog or cat is recovering from a UTI, make sure that they get plenty of pee breaks! You should encourage them to urinate as much as possible to avoid build-up in the bladder. Be sure they always have access to a clean litter box or are able to go outside. Females that are spayed early on can develop loose tissue where urine can build up around the urethra. In female cats, the urethra is short and bacteria can quickly go to the bladder. By wiping your cat’s bottom with a baby wipe or wet paper towel after urination, you can remove some bacteria before it moves upstream. When to call your Vet Urinary tract infections typically clear up quickly with antibiotics, but they can get worse very quickly. If you’ve tried some of the remedies above, and a day or two later your pet is still sick, make an appointment with your vet right away. Pets can develop a stone that stops them from urinating, and it requires emergency treatment. This type of urethra blockage is not uncommon in male cats.

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 11, 2014, 7:12 pm
KNBC Joel Grover Investigation

For most pet owners, their pet is a beloved family member.  But are you aware that you are accidentally poisoning your pet with one-spot flea & tick treatment and outdoor fertilizers? Read the following links and forward them to your family, friends and neighbors to provide them information the Chemical Pet Industry doesn’t want you or them to know about. Not only are you poisoning your pets but these toxic anti-parasite products have devastating effects on your children’s health too. Watch this video from KNBC Joel Grover Investigation How do YOU feel after watching this video? How much do YOU care? What are YOU going to do to help pets stop being treated with toxic chemical products?  Safer products are available – products that will effectively protect pets from parasites, without negative consequences to their health. Click here to learn more about a 100 % toxic–free product for safe and effective protection of your pet from fleas and ticks.  

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 9, 2014, 6:29 pm
Mars Petcare

Mars has agreed to buy Procter & Gamble‘s Iams, Eukanuba and Natura brands in major markets for $2.9 billion in cash, the companies announced in a joint press release. From a press release posted on PetAge.com:     Mars has agreed to buy Procter & Gamble‘s Iams, Eukanuba and Natura brands in major markets for $2.9 billion in cash, the companies announced in a joint press release.     The strategic move for Mars Petcare will expand its already large portfolio of pet brands, and signals Proctor & Gamble’s move to reduce its pet segment.     “Exiting Pet Care is an important step in our strategy to focus P&G’s portfolio on the core businesses where we can create the most value for consumers and shareowners,” A.G. Lafley, P&G’s chairman, president and chief executive officer, said. “The transaction creates value for P&G shareowners, and we are confident that the business will thrive at Mars, a leading company in pet care.”     The geographic regions included in the acquisition, which account for approximately 80 percent of P&G Pet Care’s global sales, include North America, Latin America and other selected countries. The agreement includes an option for Mars to acquire the business in several additional countries.  Markets not included in the transaction are primarily European Union countries.     P&G said it is developing alternate plans to sell its Pet Care business in these markets.     “This acquisition is a perfect fit with our Mars Petcare vision of making A Better World For Pets,”  Todd Lachman, Mars Petcare global president, said. “The deal reinforces our leadership in pet nutrition and veterinary science, attracts world class talent and grows our world leading portfolio.”     The companies expect to complete the transaction in the second-half of 2014, subject to regulatory approvals. From P&G website: MCLEAN, Va. & CINCINNATI–(BUSINESS WIRE)–MCLEAN, Va. & CINCINNATI–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Mars, Incorporated and The Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) today announce that Mars has agreed to buy the IAMS®, EUKANUBA®, and NATURA® brands in major markets for US$2.9 Billion in cash. This is a significant strategic move for Mars Petcare to complement its large and growing global Petcare business. The companies expect to complete the transaction in the second-half of 2014, subject to regulatory approvals. Mars Petcare is one of the world’s leading pet food and veterinary care providers and employs more than 35,000 Associates across 50 countries. Upon completion of the transaction, IAMS®, EUKANUBA®, and NATURA® brands will join Mars Petcare’s billion dollar stable mates PEDIGREE®, WHISKAS®, BANFIELD®, and ROYAL CANIN®. Mars Petcare Global President, Todd Lachman, said: “We view the addition of the IAMS®, EUKANUBA®, and NATURA® brands as exceptionally strategic. This acquisition is a perfect fit with our Mars Petcare vision of making A BETTER WORLD FOR PETS™. The deal reinforces our leadership in pet nutrition and veterinary science, attracts world class talent and grows our world leading portfolio. “Paul Iams, an animal nutritionist, founded the Iams Company in 1946. His philosophies created very strong foundations for these remarkable brands which will now complement our existing Mars Petcare portfolio.” P&G’s Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, A.G. Lafley, said: “Exiting Pet Care is an important step in our strategy to focus P&G’s portfolio on the core businesses where we can create the most value for consumers and shareowners. The transaction creates value for P&G shareowners, and we are confident that the business will thrive at Mars, a leading company in pet care.” The geographic regions included in the acquisition, which account for approximately 80% of P&G Pet Care’s global sales, include North America, Latin America and other selected countries. The agreement includes an option for Mars to acquire the business in several additional countries. Markets not included in the transaction are primarily European Union countries. P&G said it is developing alternate plans to sell its Pet Care business in these markets. P&G Financial Impacts: P&G said that it will begin reporting results of the global Pet Care business as discontinued operations as of the April-June 2014 quarter. As a result, P&G expects to restate earnings of approximately $0.03 and $0.04 per share from core earnings to discontinued operations for fiscal years 2013 and 2014, respectively, leaving its fiscal year 2014 core earnings per share growth rate guidance unchanged. The company added that the one-time earnings impact from the divestiture and ongoing earnings per share dilution are not expected to have a material impact on fiscal year 2015 results. P&G said that net cash proceeds from the transaction would be used for general corporate purposes. About Mars, Incorporated In 1911, Frank C. Mars made the first Mars candies in his Tacoma, Washington kitchen and established Mars’ first roots as a confectionery company. In the 1920s, Forrest E. Mars, Sr. joined his father in business and together they launched the MILKY WAY® bar. In 1932, Forrest, Sr. moved to the United Kingdom with a dream of building a business based on the objective of creating a “mutuality of benefits for all stakeholders” – this objective serves as the foundation of Mars, Incorporated today. Based in McLean, Virginia, Mars has net sales of more than $33 billion, six business segments including Petcare, Chocolate, Wrigley, Food, Drinks, Symbioscience, and more than 75,000 Associates worldwide that are putting its Principles into action to make a difference for people and the planet through its performance. Mars brands include: Petcare – PEDIGREE®, ROYAL CANIN®, WHISKAS®, BANFIELD® Pet Hospital, NUTRO®, SHEBA®, DREAMIES® and CESAR®; Chocolate – M&M’S®, SNICKERS®, DOVE®, GALAXY®, MARS®, MILKY WAY® and TWIX®; Wrigley – DOUBLEMINT®, EXTRA®, ORBIT® and 5™ chewing gums, SKITTLES® and STARBURST® candies, and ALTOIDS® AND LIFESAVERS® mints. Food –UNCLE BEN’S®, DOLMIO®, EBLY®, MASTERFOODS®, SEEDS OF CHANGE® and ROYCO®; Drinks – ALTERRA ® Coffee Roasterscoffee, THE BRIGHT TEA CO.® tea,DOVE®/GALAXY® Hot Chocolate, and FLAVIA® brewer; Symbioscience – COCOAVIA® and WISDOM PANEL®.

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 9, 2014, 2:52 pm
Azalea – Rhododendron Species

Five Toxic Plants That Can Seriously Injure Your Dog If you’re a dog lover, thoughts of summertime conjure memories of long evening strolls and outdoor recreation with your dog. In fact, you may have already started this summer to create new fond memories. Given that, the last thing you want on one of your nature walks is for your canine companion to be sidelined by an injury. Unfortunately, many pet parents don’t realize until it’s too late that there are menacing toxins lurking in the plants of both cultivated and wild landscapes. Plants that you are used to seeing in public parks, your neighborhood and perhaps even in your own backyard can lead to devastating effects. In what follows, Dr. Jane will review five of these dangerous plants so that you will be able to identify and avoid them when you’re with your dog. First up are four plants commonly used in landscaping that are actually toxic to canines … continue reading »

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 7, 2014, 11:56 am
Dog TV

Of all the TV and Cable channels we have to choose from, I never thought, in my wildest dreams, that a brand new channel just for dogs has arrived. Yes, you read correctly, a television channel just for fluffy! Imagine this, no matter what hours you work or you’re away from home, Dog TV will keep your pup entertained for hours on end with their 24/7 line-up…maybe with a little puppy nap in between! Their schedule is backed up by scientific research to include shows to help relax your pet, stimulate them into playfulness and even provide them exposure to to life’s day-to-day sounds and activities from a dog’s viewpoint to help them cope with the real world…all while you’re not home! Of course, I can already see us animal lovers hogging the remote control from our family members or better yet, this channel would be perfect for pet lovers who, for whatever reason cannot have a pet, want to bring the dog world into their homes. Who says we can’t watch too? You’ve gotta watch this to believe it and let us know your thoughts! We’d love to hear them! Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy Want to know more? Then check it out for yourself at Dog TV. So what do you think about Dog TV? Tell us your thoughts and whether you’d subscribe to this channel for your spoiled pup!  

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 5, 2014, 6:07 pm
Diamond Pet Foods

CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. (Legal Newsline) – April 3, 2014 – A settlement has been reached in a class action lawsuit alleging Diamond Pet Foods manufactured and distributed certain pet food products that allegedly led to illness and death in some animals that consumed them. The lawsuit was first filed in 2012 by New York resident Barbara Marciano, who claimed the dog food manufactured by Diamond Pet Foods caused her one of her dogs, Benji, to become ill and die, and another one of her dogs, Pepsi, to experience lethargy. There are three subclasses of class members. Subclass I includes consumers who purchased certain pet food products in 2011 and 2012. The defendants will create a settlement fund limited to a maximum of $750,000 to pay claims from those who purchased the pet food. Members of this subclass who submit a valid claim form will receive either payment up to a maximum value of two bags of pet food per pet; or a pro rata share of the net proceeds of the settlement fund for this subclass not to exceed the actual or estimated purchase price of up to two bags of the pet food per pet if the settlement fund is exhausted, if the total amount claimed by the eligible Subclass I members exceeds the funds available. If applicable, Subclass I members can request reimbursement of the cost of veterinary care and/or the fair market value of the pet as set forth in Subclass II, according to the settlement order. The defendants will create a settlement fund limited to a total maximum of $1.25 million to pay claims from Subclass II. Members of this subclass who submit a valid claim form will receive a full reimbursement of the actual cost of veterinarian testing, care and/or treatment. The defendants will not be required to reimburse for any portion of the veterinary bill that is unrelated to suspected or actual salmonella illness. Subclass II members will only reimbursed for those veterinary or related charges deemed reasonable, necessary and typical within the class member’s community, according to the settlement order. If the settlement fund is exhausted, Subclass II members will receive a pro rata share of the net proceeds of the settlement fund. If death of a pet or animal is claimed, a class member submitting a valid claim shall receive the fair market value of the pet, or, if the settlement fund is exhausted, a pro rata share of the market value of the pet; and, if applicable, relief for veterinary care of the pet. The defendants will provide relief in the form of coupons to pay claims for Subclass III. Class members who submit valid claim forms shall receive one or more coupons with a face value of $2. A maximum of 50,000 coupons will be distributed. Class members must submit a valid claim form by July 11. A final hearing will be held on Sept. 15. Attorneys have until 28 days before the settlement hearing to file applications for award of attorneys’ fees and expenses. The defendants deny any wrongdoing but have agreed to a settlement to avoid the expense and uncertainty of trial. Marciano claims prior to the recall, Diamond never warned her or any other member of the class that the recalled pet food would cause their pets to have health problems and possibly die. In April 2012, the Food and Drug Administration, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and other state and local officials, investigated a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella infections. The FDA’s investigation was prompted by Department of Agriculture officials from various states who reported they discovered Salmonella in unopened or sealed packages of Diamond brands. The FDA’s investigation revealed that a total of 14 people from nine states were infected by the outbreak and subsequently, the FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine detected a strain of Salmonella virus at Diamond’s manufacturing plant in Gaston, S.C., according to the suit. Starting on April 6, 2012, Diamond initiated several recalls of its pet food due to Salmonella and in all, it recalled nine brands of pet food, including Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul, Country Value, Diamond, Diamond Naturals, Premium Edge, Professional, 4Health, Taste of the Wild, Apex, Kirkland Signature and Canidae. The plaintiffs were represented by Samuel H. Rudman, Mario Alba Jr., Mark S. Reich and William H. Geddish of Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd. The case is assigned to District Judge Sandra J. Feuerstein. U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York case number: 2:12-cv-02708 Source:  Legal Newsline

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 3, 2014, 6:04 pm
Natural Remedies for Fleas

Natural Remedies for Fleas – Home Treatments for Your Home and Pets Fleas on your Pet 1. Give your dog 1/2 clove of crushed garlic, mixed in with your dog’s food, once a day. Good bye, fleas. To keep your dog flea free, continue giving garlic everyday. Garlic is safe and promotes good digestive health.  Remember though that garlic is NOT safe for puppies, kittens and nursing mommas.   2. Brewer’s yeast added to the diet has been touted as a sure cure for fleas, but recently information has come to light suggesting that the large amount of brewer’s yeast necessary to eliminate fleas might cause health problems. Instead of adding brewer’s yeast to your dog’s diet, try sprinkling it on your pet. Thoroughly rub it into the coat to make sure it reaches the skin. It is best to do this outside, because the fleas cannot stand the smell of yeast and will jump off of your pet. Note: you can use brewer’s yeast in conjunction with garlic. 3. Mix a few drops of the herb pennyroyal or eucalyptus oil into your pet’s shampoo. Note: Undiluted pennyroyal oil can be toxic and should never be used at full strength. 4. Use a flea spray on your dog. Sprays containing D-limonene or pyrethrins are effective and less toxic than some sprays.  The best natural insect spray we have found and use daily is Nature’s Way. Fleas in the Environment 1. For fleas in the house you can sprinkle table salt on carpets, floors, furniture, and in cracks and crevices around baseboards where fleas hide. Wait one or two hours and vacuum.  Boric Acid Treatment is also safe, and lasts up to one year.  You might also consider Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth, which can be taken internally as well, for many health benefits! 2. Vacuuming is an extremely effective, nontoxic way to keep the flea population down. Be sure to change the vacuum bag frequently when you have a flea problem, after each vacuuming is best. Or you can take the bag outside after each use and put it in direct sun which will kill the fleas inside. Then you can reuse the bag. If you have a big freezer you can also put the bag in the freezer to kill the fleas inside it. 3. Wash your pet’s bedding at least once week. 4. Plug in a night light and put a wide pan partially filled with water underneath. Some will leap toward the light, fall in the pan and drown in the water. 5. You can sprinkle diatoms (diatomaceous earth) on carpeting and upholstered furniture. 6. For yard infestations use nematodes-microscopic worms. These are available at pet and garden stores.  Garl-Or3 Yard and Garden Spray is a natural and all purpose garlic-based spray that greatly reduces insects. 7. For an uncontrollable, out-of-control flea infestation in your home, organic cedar oil is the #1 recommended solution.  Works as an instant kill solution for flea infestations, it is effective at ridding your home and pets of pests, but it is safe enough to use on your children! Hint: You can drown any fleas you find in alcohol. We recommend Flea Free, a natural line of flea and tick prevention products.  If you are already suffering a flea infestation in your home and on your pets, we highly recommend Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth and/or Cedar Oil, depending on your needs! Once you’ve completely eliminated all fleas and larvae, it’s time to arm your pet with a PetZone Flea & Tick Protector disk, which will ward off fleas and ticks naturally, safely and effectively!  PetZone Flea & Tick Protector is safe and effective for ALL animals of ALL ages, including humans!    Learn more about PetZone Flea & Tick Protector here.

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Author: Bree
Posted: April 1, 2014, 8:48 am
Cat with Ringworm

Ringworm in Animals and Pets © by Bree Weasner, PreciousPets.org LLC Ringworm occurs occasionally in pets and it is not actually caused by a worm, but a fungus, and the lesion is not always shaped like a ring. Fungus is everywhere, and so it isn’t easy to figure which pets will develop Ringworm. Some dogs and cats are carriers of Ringworm and they can transmit the disease to other animals and people. Ringworm is more common in young animals and those with weakened immune systems (for example-FeLV).  Ringworm can be transmitted to people, but just because a pet has Ringworm does not mean they will automatically transfer it to a human. Fungi of Significance in Ringworm Microsporum canis - Source is typically cats, most often long-hair cats.  Microsporum gypseum - This type of Ringworm typically is from dogs and cats that dig into contaminated soil.  Trichophyton mentagrophytes – Infects dogs and cats that are exposed to rodents or borrows where rodents live. Which of these 3 types of Ringworm occur depends on the animal and their geographic location. Symptoms of Ringworm Skin lesions that show up when Ringworm is present do not always look like a ring. Hair loss in small patches occurs, and these patches will disappear and reappear on different parts of the body. It is important to know that the diagnosis of Ringworm cannot be made simply from the lesion. These symptoms may be due to other diseases or allergies. Diagnosis All Ringworm diagnosis requires testing. If a human has been diagnosed with Ringworm, it is possible they contracted it from their pet, even if the pet is without symptoms. This is especially true for multiple cat households.  One way Ringworm is diagnosed is with a Woods lamp aka a black light. Species will fluoresce if present. Hair is then cultured and sent to a lab to determine if the fungus is present or not. Treatment for Ringworm A special shampoo is used to treat ringworms, and it isn’t uncommon for pet’s hair to be clipped. Anti fungal creams are also used, especially in areas where there is little hair growth. Some of these medications include Clotrimazole, Miconazole, Chlorhexidene and Ketoconazole. Oral anti-fungal medications are also used at times, but it is important to know the potential side effects when giving the animal chemical based medications. If you’re looking for a natural treatment that is both safe and effective, Nature’s Defender with 100% natural cedar oil  treats ringworm, infections, would, lacerations, lesions, rain rot and more. This product can also be used as a dipping solution to eliminate fleas, mites and help other skin problems. Natur’s Defender replaces toxic chemicals and does not have negative side effects. In some animals, Ringworm will resolve itself on its own, but it should be treated at the first sign of infection.  “A four month old kitten had a severe skin condition that was diagnosed as ringworm.  After four months of conventional therapy, the resistant ringworm infection was not resolved.  We put the kitten on Transfer Factor and within 5 days there were no apparent ringworm lesions remaining.  Within a few weeks all the hair had grown back – and the now 9 month old cat has a beautiful, glossy coat.  The ringworm lesions have not returned.”?  Sam Jones, DVM If you happen to have Goldenseal Tincture at home, you could try this easy recipe as well. Recommended Product: Transfer Factor Preventing Ringworm It is nearly impossible to prevent exposure to Ringworm. Routine hygiene such as frequent hand washing and keeping your pets clean will help to combat the problems. Keeping your pet healthy will enable them to have a strong immune system, which in turn will enable them to fight disease more effectively.    

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Author: Bree
Posted: March 31, 2014, 3:33 pm
Natural Heartworm Prevention Program

Natural Heartworm Prevention and Protection© by Bree Weasner, PreciousPets.org LLC The beginning of Spring is when veterinarians inspect dogs & cats for heartworm organisms and put pets on heartworm prevention medicines. Most vets suggest giving your pet a monthly or day-to-day pill for heartworm prevention, but this can be dangerous as the drug for heartworm is a chemical. The ingredients in this medicine include a chemical pesticide, which can cause illness when administered via heartworm pill every day or month. The side effects of treatment are dangerous and can cause harm to your pet. Some of these side effects are seizure, diarrhea, vomiting and fatigue. In addition, chemical heartworm medication makes the kidneys and liver work harder as they need to eliminate toxins from the body. This causes the body’s immune system to weaken, which makes your pet more susceptible to disease. The good news is that holistic and alternative veterinarians recommend natural and effective methods that are safe, free of harmful side effects and don’t contribute to illness like arthritis, liver/kidney disease, allergies and others. Heartworm Explained and Causes Heartworm is a parasite that mostly infects dogs, but cats can be infected as well. Heartworm is extremely dangerous to your pet and an infestation can kill if left untreated. Heartworm is transmitted to animals by infected mosquitos, (not all mosquitos carry the disease) and when the mosquito bites the animal, their larvae move throughout your pet’s body to the heart and lungs. From there, adult worms grow and cause serious & potentially life threatening damage. How do I know if my Pet is Infected? Symptoms of heartworm disease: • Changes in weight/loss• Fatigue• Breathing problems• Coughing It is important to note that during the beginning stages of the disease, there may not be any symptoms. Heartworm is diagnosed through a blood test. How do you treat Heartworm? Conventional Heartworm treatment includes medication that is both preventative and medication that rids worms from the heart & lungs if the disease is advanced. While this medication is effective, it is acknowledged by vet professionals that there are a number of health risks that come along with this treatment because the medication contains pesticides that accumulate in the body over a period of time. Heartworm is also dangerous because dead heartworms may become dislodged and block blood vessels, causing immediate death. Surgery is sometimes needed to remove these worms. Deciding on a prevention and treatment route, whether it is conventional, homeopathic or a combination of both is a decision you should make with your veterinarian. There are many homeopathic and holistic methods to treat heartworm without the use of chemicals and many vets across North America integrate more holistic methods into treatment in order to maintain and promote the health of animals. Alternative Heartworm Prevention & Treatment There are a few steps you must take as a pet owner to protect your pet against heartworm, as there isn’t a magic pill. Be sure to follow the steps and tips below in conjunction with your vet’s supervision. Healthy Diet Holistic vets around the world agree that commercial, processed pet foods are detrimental to pet health. Raw food like fruits, vegetables, meat, bones and water are the best foods you can give your pet. Cats are meat eaters, so raw meat, bones and chicken giblets are good for your cat. You should avoid giving your pet milk and foods with sugar, artificial flavors and preservatives. Life’s Abundance is a great natural alternative to commercial pet food. Immune System Health Animals with a healthy immune system are less likely to be bitten by mosquitos. If your pet has a healthy immune system and is bit, their natural defense system will work better to kill off larvae. Some of the contributing factors to a weakened immune system include frequent antibiotics/vaccinations, low quality pet foods, improper diet, stress and synthetic medications. A healthy liver is imperative to the health of your pet. It prevents illness, removes waste and toxins, so it must work properly. Immunity and Liver Support ensures that your pet’s liver stays healthy and strong, along with a robust immune system. Look for our Buy 2, Get 1 Free Special! Heart Health and Circulation Like humans, heart health and proper circulation is vital to your pet’s ability to fight off disease. Good circulation allows white blood cells to fight disease and red blood cells to carry oxygen. Proper diet and adequate exercise are important parts of a healthy heart and circulation system. Heart & Circulation Tonic benefits your pet in the war against heartworms and other illnesses. Look for our Buy 2, Get 1 FREE Special! De-Worming If you live in an area with a high risk for heartworm, prevention is key. Consulting with a holistic veterinarian on your options for a homeopathic heartworm prevention and treatment plan will help to fight off heartworm before it occurs. We recommend the use of PetAlive Parasite Dr.  to prevent infestations and improve overall health. Parasite Dr. contains “bitter” ingredients that make the animal unattractive to ticks, fleas and mosquitos. Parasite Dr. also contains natural anti-parasitic properties that kill and rid the body of worms. Consult with your vet before beginning at home treatment if your pet appears to be ill. Benefits of PetAlive Parasite Dr: • Rid and protect your pet against parasites like heartworm, roundworm and tapeworm• Balance digestive health, soothe digestive system• Cleanse the digestive system to improve function• Reduce yeast and protect against bacterial infection• Reduce nausea, bloating and flatulence in your pet• Improve energy levels Look for our Buy 2 & Get 1 Free Special Lastly, keep mosquitos away from pets! Everyday use of Flea Free will keep fleas, ticks, mosquitos and other pests away from pets in a natural and chemical-free manner. An all-natural formula, Flea Free is so safe that it is effective for human consumption!   The Natural Heartworm Prevention Program (NSP) is also effective and consists of three products. These products include Artemisia Combination (Monthly De-Wormer), HSII (Heart Health),...

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Author: Bree
Posted: March 30, 2014, 9:06 am