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Benadryl for Dogs

Giving your dog Benadryl can help relieve a number of symptoms, but always check with your veterinarian before administering it. Remember: Benadryl is the brand name and not the name of the drug that produces the effects. Make sure the formulation you choose contains diphenhydramine as the only active ingredient before giving it to your pet. The main ingredients are usually displayed clearly on the front and back of the box. Dr. DuBose recommends giving a dose every 8 to 12 hours.

Don’t Get Ticked

MAKE YOUR YARD A FLEA- AND TICK-FREE ZONE #1 Clear yard debris. Fleas and ticks love tall grass and shady areas. Rake and dispose of leaves, mow the lawn and pull weeds. READ: Pet Safe Weed Killers » RELATED: Kill Weeds With Vinegar and Dish Detergent » #2 Sprinkle food-grade diatomaceous earth — DE — around the yard. It’s an off-white talc-like powder made from the fossilized remains of marine phytoplankton. Fleas and ticks have exoskeletons that can be pierced once exposed to diatomaceous earth. When that happens, the insects can’t retain water and they eventually dehydrate and die. But food-grade DE (approved for oral use) doesn't harm mammals. Read labels carefully to make certain that your purchase is safe for animals. The package must read "FOR ORAL USE." The topical form is toxic. If you’re not sure or the label doesn’t specify, call the number listed for the manufacturer. #3: Buy nematodes, tiny roundworms that eat ticks and fleas. You can find them in garden supply stores to spray or spread over the lawn. Pretty soon, you should notice that fleas and ticks have disappeared. Nematodes are not parasitic to mammals and don’t harm humans, pets or plants. They do, however, insert themselves into an insect’s body and send out a toxin that kills fleas and ticks within a short time. Because nematodes reproduce in the yard where they have been released, their effects will last for several months. #4: Spread cedar chips around your yard. Fleas and ticks don’t like the way they smell. Granted, the scent won’t kill them, but it will keep pesky critters at bay. #5: Plant rosemary. It keeps away the unfriendly four — fleas, ticks, mosquitoes and black

Spring Cleaning for Your Pet

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, spring is the season during which the gallbladder and liver are most active. The liver is associated with the eyes, paws, nails, hooves, tendons and ligaments. It also controls the smooth flow of qi (energy) throughout the body. Stress, whether from drugs, emotional causes or environmental toxins, leads to stagnant liver qi. This may be evidenced by red eyes, irritability, aggression, ligament or tendon damage, and weak, brittle nails — signs that your pet's liver needs tender loving care. No worries, however. Together, Dr. DuBose and you can nourish your pet's liver and restore the balance of qi to help it work efficiently. Pay attention to diet. Many chain store foods and treats are loaded with chemical additives, as well as artificial colors and flavors. Worse, they often contain indigestible ingredients and poor quality proteins and fillers that tax your pet's digestion. Stay away from processed food and treats when possible. Read the labels. Cook homemade foods. Chinese medicine teaches that the liver and gallbladder love the color green, so adding finely chopped or cooked, leafy greens, asparagus, broccoli and dandelion greens to your pet’s diet is a major plus. Beef, beef liver, chicken liver, eggs, carrots, beets, brown rice, apples, and fish oil are also healthy choices. As strange as it might sound, apple cider vinegar works well, too. Commonly reported benefits include skin and coat improvements, less itching and scratching, better mobility in older dogs and an improvement in overall health. Millet, wheat, rye and oatmeal also help the liver function more efficiently. Get Moving. The liver tends to stagnate over the winter when pets generally eat more and exercise less. To help the flow of qi, it’s important that your pet exercises

Gingerbread Snacks

From The Organic Dog Biscuit Cookbook INGREDIENTS 2 cups of whole-wheat flour 1½ cup of oat flour 1½ cup of brown rice flour 1 teaspoon of baking powder 1 teaspoon of ginger 1 teaspoon of cinnamon ½ teaspoon of baking powder 1 egg ¼ cup of safflower oil ¼ cup of molasses ¼ cup of peanut butter 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar ½ cup water (add slowly) DIRECTIONS Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients except water. Add water slowly and mix until dough forms. (If the dough seems too dry, add more water or if it's too wet, add more flour.) If your dough reaches a good consistency before the entire ½ cup of water is used, no worries.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, spoon out dough and roll into balls (about 1 inch in diameter) Place on  the cookie sheet. It's OK to place cookies close together; they won't expand much while baking. They also won't rise or flatten, so if you want a flatter cookie, press before baking. Bake 18 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool cookies on a wire rack, place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator.

The Skinny On How We Help Fat Cats and Dogs

Here’s the skinny, folks. Cats and dogs in the U.S. are getting fatter, and the sad truth is that most pet owners aren’t aware of the epidemic. A spring 2015 study by the Association for Pet Prevention highlights some pretty staggering numbers: 58% of our nation’s cats and 53% of dogs are considered overweight. The study also found most owners of fat pets who participated in the survey had no idea that their Fido was on the fluffy side. Unfortunately, obesity is now the biggest health threat to pets in the United States, according to researchers, and the costs of illness and injury as a direct result makes it the most treated medical problem in veterinary hospitals. Obesity also is one of the most preventable problems, but pet owners often let it go untreated. If your pet is overweight, veterinarians warn that you’re cheating him of a longer life — up to three years, according to some estimates. Obesity usually begins with too many snacks, too little exercise and a tendency toward table scraps. Sound familiar? Sometimes, just 3 extra pounds to a small dog feels more like 30. But simply being fat isn’t the only problem. Fatty tissue is a serious problem, too. The old school of thought was that fat (adipose tissue) stored energy and protected vital organs from injury. Newer research proves that fat isn't always so innocent, however. Adipose tissue is actually an endocrine organ that secretes hormones and cytokines, proteins produced by cells to regulate the body’s natural responses to disease and infection. But when the body releases too much of the protein, inflammation occurs and, over time, may predispose the body to develop chronic diseases including arthritis, diabetes, osteoarthritis, high

Ginger is Good for Dogs

Ginger, used in ancient Chinese herbal medicine for at least 2,000 years, is good for your dog’s health and helps prevent motion sickness. If your pet can’t stomach a car ride, try feeding ginger 30 minutes before. That should give the ginger enough time to take effect. Vomiting and motion sickness are symptoms of rebellious energy, called qi in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Feeding ginger helps restore harmony and gets qi moving in the right direction to improve digestion. And because ginger is a warming herb, it works naturally to heat the body. But there’s more. Ginger lowers cholesterol, ventilates lungs, circulates the blood, treats gallstones, lowers blood pressure and prevents blood clots from forming. If your dog experiences any of these problems, incorporate a ginger-based treat into his diet once or twice weekly. A word of caution, however: Ginger is not recommended for dogs that are anemic, have recently had surgery or that battle digestive problems, as the heat may worsen the condition. Ask your vet if ginger is OK for your pet, especially if he's following a prescription diet. Dr. DuBose also suggests serving ginger tea. Steep two thin slices of fresh ginger root in 1 cup of boiled water for 5 minutes. Cool completely and give to your pet 30 minutes before traveling. Dosage: Cats and small dogs: 1 to 2 teaspoons; medium to large dogs: ⅓ cup

Homemade Dog Food

We're told it will make Bowser's tail wag. Let us know if it's a hit or miss in your kitchen. INGREDIENTS 6 cups of water 1 pound of ground turkey 2 cups of cooked brown rice 1 teaspoon of dried rosemary 8 ounce package of frozen broccoli, carrots and cauliflower combination DIRECTIONS Place water, ground turkey, cooked rice, and rosemary into a large Dutch oven or iron skillet. Stir until the ground turkey is broken and evenly distributed throughout the mixture. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Add frozen vegetables, and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cool. Refrigerate until using. Makes 10 servings. Dr. DuBose says cooked rice is much easier for dogs to digest. In fact, she soaks rice in water overnight before cooking it. "Otherwise, it just comes out the other end."

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