This is Sherman. He is a very sweet 3 yr old Chihuahua mix who is in need of a home where he can get lots of love and attention. His home circumstances changed and he is currently being looked after by a family member that has a very busy schedule. Sherman is current on vaccinations, neutered and microchiped. Please share or reply if you are interested.
How to choose a food-dispensing cat toy:
Just like dogs, cats need mental exercise on a regular basis. They need mentally stimulating activities to keep them from getting bored or anxious. There are lots of toys at the pet store that we can buy to ensure that our cats get their physical exercise, but what can we do to give their brains a workout too?
Cats are natural predators and have to work for their food, so food dispensing toys are an ideal way to give your cat a mental workout. Find or make a toy that your cat has to spend some time learning to solve. When choosing (or making) a food dispensing toy, here are some guidelines to keep in mind.
A food dispensing toy should be durable. Find one that will withstand repeated rough treatment.
Choose a toy that is easy to clean to ensure that it will be cleaned once in a while. This is important for a toy that holds food.
Make sure you use healthy treats or food in the toy, and that the total daily calories you are giving your cat are appropriate for his size and age.
Keep in mind that the toy should not be used for regular feedings. Put regular meals in your cat’s food bowl.
You don’t want to overuse a food dispensing toy. It’s best to use a variety of strategies to keep your cat engaged and healthy. If you have any questions about how to keep your cat physically and mentally active, contact Claus Paws, your Vancouver WA cat vet.
With National Poison Prevention Week coming up in March, we thought it might be a good time to share some helpful reminders on reducing the risks of accidental poisoning for your pets.
- Store all pesticides in airtight containers out of your pet’s reach.
- Dispose of contents properly and safely.
- Purchase garbage cans that have locking lids, and keep them in a heavy frame so your pet cannot knock them over.
- Keep pets off of lawns that have been sprayed with pesticide.
- If your pet does come in contact with this type of substance, wash their feet immediately with warm soapy water and rinse thoroughly.
- Keep your pets from playing in and / or digging in vegetable gardens or flower beds.
- Keep compost piles out of reach.
- Never give your pet human medicine without your veterinarian’s direct instruction to do so.
This list will offer a quick reference for some of the most common household and outdoor substances that your pet might come in contact with. Keep these products out of the reach of your children and your pets.
C = cardiovascular toxin
GI = gastrointestinal toxin
R = respiratory toxin
N = neurological toxin
KO = kidney/organ failure
* = Substance is especially dangerous and can be fatal.
Alcohol (all beverages, ethanol, methanol, isopropyl): N
Almonds* (kernel in the pit contains cyanide): R
Amaryllis bulb*: GI, N
Apricot* (kernel in the pit contains cyanide): R
Autumn crocus (Colchicum autumnale)*: GI, C
Avocado (leaves, seeds, stem, skin)*: C, S, KO, fatal to birds
Azalea (entire rhododendron family): C, GI, N
Bird of Paradise: GI
Bleeding heart*: C
Bracken fern: N
Buckeye: GI, N
Buttercup (Ranunculus): GI
Caffeine: GI, N
Caladium *: KO
Calla lily*: KO
Castor bean* (can be fatal if chewed): GI, C, N
Cherry (kernel in the pit contains cyanide): R
Chinese sacred or heavenly bamboo*: R, contains cyanide
Chocolate*: GI, N
Choke cherry, unripe berries*: R, contains cyanide
Chrysanthemum (a natural source of pyrethrins): GI, N
Crocus bulb: GI, N
Croton (Codiaeum sp.): GI
Cyclamen bulb: GI
Delphinium, larkspur, monkshood*: N
Dumb cane (Dieffenbachia)*: GI, R, severe mouth swelling
Elderberry, unripe berries*: R, contains cyanide
English ivy (All Hedera species of ivy): GI
Fig (Ficus): General allergan, dermatitis
Four-o’clocks (Mirabilis): GI
Foxglove (Digitalis)*: C, can be fatal
Garlic* (raw or spoiled): GI
Hyacinth bulbs: GI
Hydrangea*: R, contains cyanide
Holly berries: GI
Iris corms: GI
Jimson weed*: R
Kalanchoe*: C, can be fatal
Lantana*: KO (liver failure)
Lily (bulbs of most species): GI
Lily-of-the-valley*: C, can be fatal
Lupine species: N
Marijuana or hemp (Cannabis)*: N, GI, can be fatal
Mistletoe berries*: N, C, shock
Morning glory*: N, Seeds toxic to birds
Mountain laurel: C
Narcissus, daffodil (Narcissus): GI
Oak* (remove bark for use as a bird perch): KO
Oleander*: C, very poisonous, can be fatal
Onions* (raw or spoiled): GI
Peach* (kernel in the pit contains cyanide): R
Pencil cactus/plant* (Euphorbia sp.): GI, dermatitis
Philodendron (all species)*: KO
Poinsettia (many hybrids, avoid them all): GI, dermatitis
Potato (leaves and stem): GI, N
Rhubarb leaves*: KO
Rosary Pea (Arbus sp.)* (Can be fatal if chewed): GI, C, N
Scheffelera (umbrella plant)*: KO
Shamrock (Oxalis sp.)*: KO
Spurge (Euphorbia sp.): GI
Tomatoes (leaves and stem): GI, N
Yew*: C, fatal to most animals
(Osta Elliot-“Lead Technician” and her baby “Rocko”)
On February 20th, pet lovers everywhere observe National Love Your Pet Day. This holiday is a day set aside to give extra attention to and pamper your pets. This is a good day to focus on the special relationship that you have with your pets.
Did you know that most households in the United States have at least one pet? In the United States, dogs are slightly more popular than cats, but not by much. Pets are not limited to the canine and feline categories. There are quite a few who prefer the companionship of birds, reptiles, fish or rats. Whoever your pet companion is, we are sure you will enjoy spending a little extra time with them on National Love Your Pet Day and reap the benefits, as well such as stress relief and lower blood pressure. So on February 20 (and every day) show your appreciation to your pets!
HOW TO OBSERVE
Bring your pet a special treat, take an extra long walk or give them more attention on National Love Your Pet Day. Whatever you decide to do, spoil and appreciate your pets! Use #NationalLoveYourPetDay to post on social media.
How to tell if your dog is in pain
Nobody wants to see their dog suffering and in pain or discomfort. At times, sometimes it can be very difficult to know for sure whether or not your dog is in pain. Sure, sometimes it’s quite obvious – a noticeable limp, large cut, or observed trauma, such as being struck by a car. But other times your dog’s signs of pain can be far more subtle. It’s at these times that people often need guidance on what to look for in order to know if their dog is in pain.
Looking for Bodily Changes
Watch for limping. One of the most obvious signs of pain is limping. Limping occurs when it hurts to put weight on a leg.
Keep an eye out for other mobility issues. Aside from limping, you may see other mobility changes. For example your dog may have trouble getting up or down. It might also move around more slowly than usual, or show a reluctance to do certain activities.
- If a leg is causing pain, they are less likely to use it, and sometimes may rely on the other three legs.
- Dogs in pain will also typically move around less.
Observe changes in posture.
- Hesitance to go up or down stairs, run, or jump can be a sign of pain.
Note the position that your dog holds its head or tail. Any change from normal posture, such as a hanging or tucked tail in a dog that normally has an active tail, can be evidence of pain.
Take note of your dog’s breathing. If your dog is in pain, you may see an increase in their respiratory rate or heavy panting.
- If your dog is holding a leg differently than it normally does, it could be a sign that it is in pain.
- Pain may also cause your dog to stand with its back arched or to be very stiff when standing or moving.
Check your dog’s eyes. Your dog’s eyes can tell you a lot about any pain it might be experiencing. If there is pain in the eye area, you may see squinting, redness, cloudiness, or a discharge.
- A dog that pants persistently, especially in cool weather, may be in pain.
- Your dog also may be rubbing at the area that hurts. If your dog rubs around its eyes frequently, this could be a sign of discomfort in this area.
- The eyes can also give you a clue about pain in other areas. Squinting can be a sign of pain in the eye area, but some dogs will also squint when they are experiencing pain elsewhere.
- Dilated pupils can also be a sign that your dog is in pain.
Looking for Behavioral changes
Beware of biting. Pain can change a dog’s behavior. Even a friendly dog in great pain will be more likely to bite.
Monitor your dog’s eating. A dog in pain may decrease its food consumption. If your dog suddenly has a decreased appetite, this may be a sign of pain.
- Even a dog that has never bitten before may bite when approached if it is experiencing significant pain.
- A dog in pain may also bite if you touch or move a painful area. The natural response, when a painful area is touched, is to turn toward that area. The dog may try to bite out of instinct.
- You may first see warning signs such as growling. A dog on the verge of biting may pin its ears back or show its teeth. This is a natural protection mechanism that a dog may use to try to prevent further pain.
Watch for signs of restlessness. A dog in pain may experience restlessness or an inability to get comfortable. Your dog may show this by pacing, repeatedly readjusting its position, or getting up and down frequently.Notice sleep changes. A dog in pain may experience changes in its normal sleep schedule. A dog in pain may either sleep more than usual, or have difficulty sleeping.Listen for changes in the dog’s vocalization. Unusual vocalizations including moaning, groaning, whimpering, yipping, and even growling can all be signs of pain.
- A dog with mouth pain may also drop food when it eats.
Look for avoidance behaviors. Avoidance behaviors, such as hiding or shying away from contact with people or other animals are common when a dog is in pain. These behaviors are efforts to avoid potentially painful situations.
- These sounds may be associated with particular movements, such as when first getting up. That can help to give you a clue about the nature of the pain.
- A dog that is normally vocal may also suddenly become quiet.
Pay attention to your dog’s potty habits. Being aware of your dog’s normal bathroom habits can help you recognize many different problems.
- If your dog moves its head away when you try to pet it or makes other moves to avoid touch, this can be a sign it is in pain. Take note of such behaviors if your dog normally likes being touched.
- These behaviors can go along with a dog being more withdrawn and less interactive than normal.
- You may also notice an attitude of depression or mental dullness if your dog is experiencing pain.
- Note that some dogs may seek more attention, rather than avoiding it, if they are in pain. You should take note of either avoidance or unusually high levels of attention-seeking behaviors.
- When a dog is in pain you may notice that it exhibits a different posture when it urinates or defecates. For example, a male dog that normally lifts his leg to urinate might not.
- You may also see a change in how often your dog needs to do its business. Or, your dog may have accidents if it is painful for them to get to the area where they usually go.
- Pain can also change the consistency of a dog’s stool, due to the related stress. It can also lead to constipation.