Posts Tagged: pet care in elmhurst il
Around the holidays our homes are filled with all sorts of objects that aren’t there the rest of the year. Many times this includes festive plants of all kinds. These plants often end up in the mouths of curious pets, especially puppies and kittens. Some may not cause any problems at all, but many cause side effects ranging from mild to severe. Here is the low-down on a few of the more common holiday house guests:
While the poinsettia plant is perhaps the most infamous holiday plant, its reputation is not entirely deserved. Its extreme toxicity is largely an urban legend. The plant is mildly toxic and irritating to the mucous membranes. While it is unlikely to cause severe illness, it is probably best to keep this plant out of reach.
The level of toxicity of mistletoe largely depends on the variety, but the berries of both the American and European variety cause stomach irritation at small doses. At larger doses, it can trigger much more serious problems (including low blood pressure, seizures, and disorientation).
Eating holly can result in severe stomach upset in dogs and cats. Signs that your pet has eaten holly include smacking of lips, drooling, head shaking, vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite.
Lilies are very popular around the holidays, but they are deadly for cats. Ingestion causes severe stomach upset, heart arrhythmias, kidney failure, and death.
Don’t discount the tree! The oils and sap can be irritating to the mouth and stomach, which can lead to drooling and vomiting.
How to know who to trust with your pet’s grooming
Choosing somewhere to have your pet groomed can be difficult. A plethora of grooming salons have popped up in recent years, and sometimes it can be almost impossible to tell which ones are good and not-so-good until you find out first hand. Of course, we will tell you that our groomers are the best in the area, but we would rather you come to that conclusion on your own! Here are some factors to consider when choosing a groomer for your pet:
- Does the groomer personalize services?
For instance, certain pets may require special shampoos for itchy skin, have trouble with their ears, or need their coat trimmed a certain way. Our groomers are willing to groom to your pet’s needs, not a one-size-fits-all template.
- Does the groomer require proof of vaccination?
Requiring vaccinations protects your pet. Be wary of any establishment that does not ask for this information. We require all vaccines to be documented and current at the time of your appointment.
- Does the groomer know you and your pet?
Many groomers turn and burn through many pets a day and don’t have time to get to know each client. After a grooming session or two, your pet should be greeted by name!
- Does your pet get treated like the prince/princess s/he is?
Likewise, when a groomer has many pets to groom in a day s/he is unable to take the time to pamper your pet. Our groomers take pride in treating each individual pet to a spa day, taking time to allow even nervous pets to relax and enjoy themselves!
- What kinds of hours do they keep?
Do you have to work around the groomer’s schedule or do they work with yours? We are happy to work around your day care or boarding schedules.
- Can they accommodate special requests? Do they have a working knowledge of your needs?
If you have a show or performance pet, it may need to be groomed in a certain manner. Does your groomer have an in-depth knowledge of your needs? Thinking of changing up Fluffy’s look and going with a pink coat? Can your groomer accomplish that? Be sure to ask!
- What happens if the pet needs medical attention?
Injuries and accidents can happen, particularly if you choose a groomer where care and experience are lacking. In the unlikely event of a problem, Elmhurst Animal Care Center has veterinarians on staff that can immediately attend to your pet. It is also convenient to have a veterinarian around so that any minor medical issues can be addressed during your pet’s grooming appointment.
Elmhurst Animal Care Center is proud to have an experienced, caring grooming staff to attend to your pets. We hope that you trust us with your grooming needs. Because a picture is worth a thousand words, here are just a few to help you see what a great job we do!
Happy holiday season to all of our friends, furry and otherwise! We hope that this is a happy, healthy time of year for you all. While we love to see all of you, we don’t want your pet to visit us unexpectedly during the holidays, so we are providing you with a list of the top five holiday foods that will land your pet in the hospital.
Top Five Holiday Foods That Can Land Your Pet in the Hospital
It’s the main ingredient in many seasonal treats, and your pets may want to indulge as much as you do. It is best, however, for our four-legged friends to avoid chocolate in all of its forms. The offending ingredient is theobromine which is found in the highest concentrations in baking and dark chocolate. Toxicity is dose dependent, which means that the smaller your critter, the less theobromine it will take to cause problems. At lower doses, pets will experience jitteriness and vomiting/diarrhea. At higher doses, much more serious effects can occur including increased or irregular heart rate, seizures, or even death.
Before you throw a piece of Aunt Louise’s fruitcake to Fido, think twice. Raisins and grapes can cause irreversible kidney damage in pets. Some animals seem to be more sensitive than others, and there is no way to know how sensitive yours is until it is too late.
Most people would never intentionally give their pet alcohol, however that glass of eggnog on the end table may prove to be too tempting for Rover to avoid. Alcohol ingestion can lead to low heart rate, hypoglycemia, seizures, even respiratory failure. Also beware of desserts containing alcohol and raw yeast-containing dough that can produce alcohol as it ferments.
- Artificial sweeteners
If you have candies or sweets around that contain the artificial sweetener xylitol, know that even small amounts can cause a life-threatening decrease in blood sugar and liver failure in dogs.
- Table scraps
Ingestion of people food, particularly fatty, rich foods can lead to mild to severe digestive upset, sometimes requiring hospitalization. Some animals may even experience pancreatitis, a sometimes serious inflammation of the pancreas.
Enjoy the holiday with your pets. Just be sure that the only holiday treats they get are pet safe!
Cats are pretty self-sufficient, right? While this is true, it reality we can do a lot to extend the length and quality of our cat’s life. Paying attention to the following can really do a lot to add years to your time together:
- Keep your cat indoors if at all possible. Disease, parasites, predators, and man-made dangers such as cars lurk outside for even the savviest of kitties.
- Follow veterinary care recommendations. Routine examinations, vaccinations, parasite prevention, and dental care are important. We have your cat’s best interest at heart and knows that including these types of things into your care routine is vital to your cat’s well being.
- Provide an enriching environment. Cats are naturally curious, and the indoors can get boring. Interactive toys and climbing equipment are enjoyed. Also, dedicated playtime that utilizes your cat’s hunting instincts is important. Lure toys, laser pointers, and other cat-specific toys are great for this.
- Emphasize good nutrition. Provide fresh, clean water and a quality, balanced diet for your cat. Consult with your veterinarian if you think your cat is under- or over-weight.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment for your cat to be seen, give us call!
- It’s all about the water! Play in the sprinkler, bust out the wading pool, or take a dip in the lake. Always make sure your pet is supervised and rinse him/her off with clean water after swimming.
- Enjoy a frozen treat. Check out special doggy confections like Frosty Paws, make a giant popsicle by freezing treats or toys into a huge ice cube, or head to your local ice cream joint- many have items on the menu for dogs.
- Pack a picnic. Put together some of (both of your) favorite treats and find a shady spot to enjoy. Don’t forget a bowl and fresh water for your pet.
- Outsmart the sun. Head out for a walk or visit the dog park before the sun fully comes up or at twilight during the coolest parts of the day.
It may be hot out there, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the great outdoors! If you have any questions, please give us a call!
We have all experienced it: You are minding your own business, walking your dog quietly when a friendly, over-excited (or not-so-friendly, borderline aggressive) dog pulling an owner at the end of a leash comes barreling into your personal space.
Worst case scenario, your dog is not so thrilled at the sight of the other dog, or the other dog is not as thrilled as its owner perceives and chaos ensues. Best case scenario, one or both dogs, although friendly, develop bad habits regarding interactions with other humans and dogs. Keep the following cardinal rules of leash etiquette in mind when taking your dog in public:
- Not all dogs are friendly. Even if your dog is, be sure to give other pets plenty of “personal” space unless you ask the owner’s permission to approach.
- Not all people like all dogs. Another dog walker may be terrified of your dog. Don’t allow your pet to jump on or rush at others.
- Consider ditching the flexi-lead. While it’s convenient to let your dog roam, it is impossible to maintain control of your pet while on a flexi-lead. They are also much less sturdy and more likely to break in times of need.
- If you do use a flexi-lead, keep it locked at 6 feet when other people or dogs are around.
- Train your pup! Exuberant, friendly dogs and cautious, fearful dogs alike benefit from training sessions.
Contact us if you’d like some recommendations for local trainers.
Heartworm disease is no joke. It is a very serious problem for pets that, with a little effort, is almost completely preventable. Here are a few facts regarding heartworm disease so that you can better understand how to protect your pet:
- Heartworms grow inside the heart, lungs, and associated vessels.
- Heartworm disease is transmitted by female mosquitoes.
- Both dogs and cats can become infected.
- Heartworm disease has been found in ALL 50 states.
- Pets that are infected may not exhibit any signs until serious problems and even death occur.
- There is a treatment for heartworm disease in dogs, although the treatment is expensive and can have a high risk of complications. No treatment is currently available for cats.
Contact us and we can help you to decide what the best preventative plan is for your pet. By educating yourself you can protect your dog or cat from this scary disease.
Ah, the dreaded butt-drag. Every pet owner has experienced it. But what does it mean? Don’t ignore it! If your dog is carpet surfing, there is a reason. Here are the most common causes:
- Anal sacs – All dogs and cat have little sacs right inside the rectum that contain a stinky fluid. Normally this fluid is expressed when your pet has a bowel movement. Sometimes the glands can become clogged or infected, however, resulting in a very irritating pressure that can be painful. You can help avoid this by bringing your pet in for grooming, which can include anal gland expression.
- Parasites – Intestinal parasites such as tapeworms can cause irritation around the rectum, resulting in scooting.
- Allergies – Allergies, in particular food allergies, can cause an itchy behind. Give us a call if you suspect this may be the case for your pet.
- Irritation – Anything irritating such as debris stuck in the hair around the rectum or inflammation secondary to diarrhea can result in your pet dragging or licking at its bottom excessively.
- Fleas – Fleas love to hang out around the back half of the animal, which can sometimes result in scooting. Fleas can also carry tapeworms, another culprit!
So next time you catch your pet dragging its rear end on your white rug, don’t yell at him or her- Make an appointment to get it checked out! Your dog or cat is trying to tell you something!