Arthritis in your Pet
As the weather begins to cool down it is a good time to remember that your pet may start to feel uncomfortable. Just like in humans the cooler weather can aggravate the joints of our pets that are affected by arthritis.
Signs and symptoms of arthritis in dogs and cats:
stiffness or slowness when getting up or down, or after resting
difficulty going up or down stairs or for cats unwillingness to jump
reduction in activity or a reluctance to exercise
dragging back legs, worn toenails or reluctance to groom in cats
Although arthritis can't be cured there are many different steps we can take to reduce the discomfort that our pets may feel.
Ensuring your pet stays lean and fit and isn't carrying any extra weight is a great way to reduce any added stress on the joints. Managing diet and providing daily gentle exercise are steps we can take to keep our pets healthy and comfortable.
Omega-3 rich diet
Omega 3 fatty acids help block the inflammation around joints that causes pain. They also suppress the activity of an enzyme that causes cartilage damage, thus slowing the progression of arthritis. Omega 3 is found in certain veterinary diets at appropriate doses for managing arthritis.
If the arthritis is severe your veterinarian may recommend anti-inflammatory medications or injections that can help to protect the joint cartilage.
If you are concerned that your pet is slowing down due to arthritis book an appointment with your vet to discuss.
For the month of May receive 10% off your horse's Hendra vaccination and if it is your horse's first vaccine receive a free microchip valued at $58 as well!
As the weather cools we see the 'tick season' begin to slow down. However we still see tick paralysis affected animals all year round. It is important to stay vigilant with checking your pet for ticks and also ensuring that all tick prevention is up to date.
As the temperature drops and home heating systems kick on, the resulting dry air can rob your dog’s skin of essential moisture and cause dry, flaky, sensitive skin. Dry skin can be just as irritating, itchy and uncomfortable for our dogs as it is for us. So if dry winter skin is making your dog miserable, here’s what you need to know.
Simply put, dandruff is dry skin cells that have flaked off of the skin’s surface and are visible either on the skin, in your dog’s coat or anywhere your dog tends to frequent. Known as seborrhea in veterinary-speak, dandruff occurs naturally as new skin cells replace old ones which are then shed into the environment. During winter months, dry skin might not seem like a big deal — although it can be unsightly and very uncomfortable. However, a buildup of dandruff can be a sign of a more serious health problem.
Increased dandruff has several causes
The culprits behind dandruff and flaky skin in dogs include:
Grooming, either too much or too little
Poor nutrition, especially a lack of essential fatty acids
Hypothyroidism (inadequate thyroid hormone production)
Cushing’s disease (excessive cortisol production)
Even if you suspect that your dog’s dandruff is caused by the dry winter weather, it’s a good idea to talk with your veterinarian in order to rule out more serious issues. And if you notice your dog’s dry skin is accompanied by other troubling signs, a trip to the veterinary clinic is definitely necessary.
Tips for managing your dog’s dry skin
Once your veterinarian has confirmed that your dog’s dandruff and itching are caused by dry skin, here are five tips for managing his or her skin and coat during cold weather:
Brush your dog at least once or twice daily to remove skin flakes and loose hair. Not only will brushing help your dog feel good and keep his or her coat shiny, but it also helps stimulate and distribute the skin’s natural oils that form a protective, moisturizing barrier.
Bathe your dog less frequently during winter months since bathing can remove the skin’s natural oils and valuable moisture. If bathing is necessary, use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner made specifically for dogs. Lukewarm water instead of hot water cleans as effectively but doesn’t dry out the skin as much.
Run humidifiers in your home to add some much-needed moisture into the air.
Feed your dog a quality, nutritionally balanced food, preferably one with proper levels of essential omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
Provide plenty of fresh, clean water to help your dog maintain his or her hydration. Even mild dehydration can contribute to skin flakiness and dryness.