A wellness plan offers a way to prepay for pet health care services. Different than insurance, a wellness plan often requires a pet owner to sign a contract for a particular time period, usually 12 months. The pet owner then pays a monthly fee and receives a set of services that may include exams, laboratory tests, vaccinations, spaying or neutering, nail trims, deworming, heartworm testing, dental care, and others. Participants in pet wellness plans also often receive discounts on additional veterinary services. Several plans may be available based upon the type of pet you have and how old he or she is. There may also be different tiers or levels depending on the services bundled into the plan. For example, a “puppy plan” that includes spay/neuter, microchipping, and other services may be more expensive than an “adult dog plan” that doesn’t include these one-time services. In addition to the monthly fee, there is often a sign-up fee or one-time membership fee, which is paid up front. ...more
Gary Riggs, DVM, spends most of his time working with exotic pets. So when it comes to advice on pocket pets—small animals such as guinea pigs, hamsters, mice, rats, gerbils, chinchillas, and sugar gliders—he’s a good person to ask. Riggs is a veterinarian at three Ohio clinics, NorthCoast Bird and Exotic Specialty Hospital, Barberton Veterinary Clinic, and The Animal Clinic of Wadsworth. ...more
Have you ever noticed a groaning dog as he slowly struggles to stand after a nap? Or a cat who is no longer interested in boisterous physical activity? These could be signs of arthritis, which results in a deterioration of the cartilage (cushion) between the joints and bones, which results in pain and limited movement. But there are actions you can take to help prevent this degenerative joint disease and preserve your pet’s quality of life. ...more
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Pet International of Miami, Fla., is recalling 1,500 units of 6" Beef Trachea pet treat because it has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. Salmonella can affect animals eating, and humans handling, the contaminated products. ...more
In 2013, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center responded to 180,000 calls about pets exposed to potentially poisonous substances. Of these calls, 15 percent were due to insecticide exposure, 10 percent to household products, 5.5 percent to rodenticides, and more than 2 percent to lawn and garden products. More than 90 percent of pet poisonings occur in our homes, so it’s important to become familiar with these common household items. ...more
Coffee with a calico? Tea with a tabby? Or just want to unwind with a feline?
Enter the “cat café.” ...more
Do you feel confident that you can safely and efficiently get your pet to emergency services at a moment’s notice if you need to?
Adrenaline can be a lifesaver, but it can also highjack your brainpower. The moment you realize your pet has an emergency, your body will kick you into high gear, giving you power to move faster and quicker than you would normally be able to, which can save your life and the lives of others. However, recruiting most of the body’s blood supply, including what the brain needs to think, is what creates that strength. So, while the body is empowered, the brain is left drained. ...more
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Oma's Pride of Avon, Conn., has recalled Purr-Complete Feline Poultry Meal because it has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. Salmonella can affect pets who have consumed, and humans who have handled, contaminated products. If your pet has consumed the affected product and is experiencing lethargy, diarrhea, fever, vomiting, decreased appetite, fever, or abdominal pain contact your veterinarian immediately. ...more