Quarterly Prints (Winter) 2018
What’s new at Claws & Paws?
2018 Calendars Are Here!!
If you haven’t picked up your free copy of our 2018 Claws & Paws Calendar, stop by today and get one. We have them available in our reception area. This year’s calendar features clients’ pets as a result of the 2nd Annual Calendar Contest we held in September. Congratulations once again to those selected for the calendar! This was a fun project and we are so happy to have you all as a part of our Claws & Paws Family. Be sure to watch for your opportunity to have your pet featured in next year’s calendar.
Emma Bernal & Kenzie McDonald Emma and Kenzie are our newest Technician Assistants. Both are students in the Pearland Independent School District. We are happy to have them join our team. These two are replacing Faith Butts, who is leaving to pursue her career in engineering. We wish her well.
Intestinal parasites are commonly found in our furry friends. To keep them healthy it is important to know what to look for, so we put together a quick reference guide here to help. We look under a microscope for eggs which can’t be seen with the naked eye.
Roundworms are found in the intestinal tract of dogs and cats. They are transmitted when a pet eats the contaminated feces from another infected animal. Signs and symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, emaciation, coughing, nasal discharge and a dull hair coat. Contact with contaminated feces can result in human ingestion and infection. They are sometimes found in human organs such as the brain or in the eyes. Yikes! If you suspect your pet may be infected, washing your hands diligently after handling feces is a must.
Hookworms are another commonly found parasite. They live in the small intestine and feed on mucosal blood. When left untreated, a hookworm infestation can cause severe anemia in puppies and kittens. Signs to look for include Gastro-Intestinal (GI) irritation, a pot-bellied appearance, weakness, diarrhea, bloody or tarry stools, anorexia, and depression, which if left untreated, can result in death. Unfortunately, Hookworms can be transmitted to humans. For example, one can become infected when wading through contaminated water.
Whipworms are another intestinal parasite, and are commonly found in young and adult dogs, but are rare in cats. They live in the large intestine and are transmitted by contaminated feces. Signs to watch for include intermittent diarrhea, weight loss, anemia, abdominal pain and flatulence. While this all may seem a bit scary, parasitic infections are treatable and can easily be identified with a simple fecal check.
If you have any concern about your pet, consider dropping off a fresh stool sample at our hospital and we can check for these and other parasites. And, remember to wash, wash, wash those hands! Many Heartworm Preventative products contain medicine to prevent these infections.
How to Calm Your Dog and Cat the Natural Way in Stressful Situations
Julie Wickel, DVM
Is your pet afraid of car rides? Thunderstorms? Strangers? The following is a list of things that you can do and give your dog or cat to help them with stress and anxiety.
- Exercise! Exercise is a great reliever for reducing boredom, stress and anxiety. Take your dog for a walk or run. Get your cat exercising with a hand-held laser light or toy.
- Distraction–Distract or have your pet associate the stressful event with a treat such as a favorite dessert/cookie, lap time, massage, favorite toy used only on those occasions, etc. Teach your dog a new command.
- Essential lavender oil. This is calming not only for our pets but also us. Dab a little on a blanket, clothing, or apply it (diluted) to your pet’s ears.
- One study was performed showing that pets calmed down with soothing classical music. Or, perhaps your baby is a Karen Carpenter fan.
- Melatonin is calming and also a sleep-aid.
- Amino acids such as l-theanine and l-tryptophan are relaxing.
- Dog and Cat Appeasing Pheromones are great at helping reduce stress. These are formulated as diffusers, collars and sprays.
- Massage–Who doesn’t like a good massage?
- If your baby likes to be brushed then brush before or during stressful events.
- Some pets respond well to Thundershirts. 11) Rescue Remedy for pets contains calming flower essences.
- There are various veterinary formulas on the market that contain combinations of flower essences, amino acids, and other supplements that help reduce stress.
- Homeopathic stress formulas are available that contain aconite, arsenicum and gelsemium.
- There are also various herbal formulas that contain passion flower, chamomile (very small doses in cats), lemon balm, valerian, ginseng, milky oats (avena sativa), skull cap, and St. John’s Wort, etc.
As you can see, numerous options are available to try for your pet. As always, please talk with your veterinarian for proper strengths and dosages before starting any supplements. For more information, please do not hesitate to talk with one of our friendly staff. We carry various herbal formulas, the appeasing pheromones and also conventional veterinary calming formulas in our hospital.
Pawsitive Planting with Pets! (a New Series)
Risk Level = HIGH
Here at Claws & Paws we see a number of plant and garden related toxicities every year. Most owners are simply not aware of the dangers lurking in their yards and neighborhoods until it is too late.
Sago Palm plants are one of the most popular landscape plants in our area of the US. Their evergreen nature and easy care make them an attractive choice for home and business owners. These plants can be commonly found at many gardening centers, big box stores, and larger hardware stores.
While they may be pretty to some, for veterinarians they are a constant reminder of the many pets that die annually from these highly toxic plants.
Every part of the sago palm plant is highly toxic to pets and people, especially the seeds. The sago palm’s active toxic agent, cycasin, is so potent that it has been known to cause death within hours of ingestion in some cases. This toxin causes liver failure and ultimately death, especially if left untreated. If your pet ingests any part of the sago palm, they may show the following symptoms: vomiting, blood in the stool, loose stools, yellowing of the skin, increased thirst, increased urination, neurological signs (depression, paralysis, seizures, etc.), and death. Blood and urine tests can be used to confirm liver failure caused by sago palm ingestion.
The best chance for recovery is to begin treatment early! If you suspect that your pet has eaten any part of the sago palm plant, seek immediate veterinary help. Your veterinarian may induce vomiting if ingestion was recent to limit the amount of toxin that is absorbed. Even when it is caught right away; additional treatments, including hospitalization and fluid therapy are often recommended to protect your pet’s liver.
If your pet is already showing symptoms of sago palm toxicity, or if tests have confirmed this, your veterinarian will need to perform additional treatment. This typically includes several days of hospitalization with intensive medical care and several months of medication at home. Unfortunately, even with medical care, many pets do not survive sago palm toxicity. If you believe that your pet has ingested any portion of a sago palm, no matter how small the amount may be, it is extremely important to call your veterinarian immediately. It could mean the difference between life and death.
We at Claws & Paws wish these plants came with a warning; unfortunately, they do not. We highly recommend the removal of all sago palms in your house or yard. Even if your pet does not normally chew on or eat plants, all it takes is one time. These plants are not worth it!
Interested in a Poop-Free Yard?
We have worked out an agreement with Poop Troops to offer one free month of yard pet waste pickup, with no strings attached. All you have to do is contact them at 877.930.POOP (7667) and to get your free month simply tell them you heard about them from Claws & Paws Veterinary Hospital® in Pearland. When signing up for this free month of service, you will be asked for credit card information, but you can cancel at any time. Many of our staff have signed up for this service and are very, very happy with not only the service received, but the customer service when dealing with staff of this company. This company is based out of Frisco, Texas, but they are currently expanding their service area to include the Greater Houston area.
We have a number of other helpful tools that you may be interested in as well. Visit our Helpful Info post to see a list of items that you may like.
We’re Expanding Our Social Reach with Snapchat
With the new year, comes new adventures. In January 2018 Claws & Paws Veterinary Hospital® launched their own Snapchat channel for those 60 Million U.S. and 150 Million Global daily active users (Forbes Magazine, Sep 2016). We are planning to “snap” daily to widen our online presence. For those using the app, we hope you’ll join us on our journey.
For those unfamiliar with Snapchat, it is a Social Media site that competes with Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for users and has a good grasp of younger social media users. Posts on Snapchat are called “Snaps” and only remain visible to the viewer for anywhere from 1-10 seconds. The viewer can choose to re-play or take a screenshot of a post; however, the poster will be notified if this occurs. But, they are gone forever after 24-hours.
Unlike other social media sites, one does not receive likes or comments publicly. If the viewer chooses to reply to a snap, it is received by the poster privately. This can then begin a private “messaging” thread. These ultimately disappear as well. You can, however, save any of your own snaps to your device’s camera roll, which can then be used on other social media sites.
Snapchat is known for its filters. This is often where those photos with filters such as rabbit ears and halos of olive leaves come from. To view a short video introduction to Snapchat, visit CPVH.com/Snapchat.
We will continue to develop and expand our social media presence. Please let our social media specialist know if you are interested or have any questions about Snapchat. Anytime your pet is with us at Claws & Paws, we’ll try to “snap” a moment in time and get it out there so you can see your baby when he or she is in our care. We understand the bond between people and pets and want to make sure we show you your baby during these times.
For all things Social Media related, you can now email us directly at Social@CPVH.com. We want to be able to assist you with any questions you may have. If your pet will be boarding with us and you would like us to send you photos of them while they are here, please let us know which Social Media Platform you prefer and we will do our best to accommodate your request. We understand it can be difficult to leave your baby behind and we want to help ease any nervousness you may have. We look forward to hearing from you.
The Staff at Claws & Paws Veterinary Hospital®