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Keeping Pets Safe on the Fourth of July

Keeping Pets Safe on the Fourth of July

Fireworks may provide excitement and joy to us humans, but for our pets, the loud crackles and booms are downright terrifying. Follow these tips to keep your pets safe during fireworks season:

  • Keep your pets inside. You can muffle outside noise by leaving a television or radio on and closing your curtains.
  • Block small cubbies where your pets could get stuck. In an attempt to hide from the noise, your pets (particularly small dogs and cats) may try to weasel themselves into small areas, where they could then become stuck. To avoid this, block off small areas, but make sure you leave a few cozy places where your pets can hide safely.
  • Microchip your pets! Scared pets may run off in an attempt to flee the noise. Make sure even your indoor pets are microchipped, and their registration is updated, well before festivities are set to begin.

If loud noises make your pet anxious regularly, talk with your veterinarian about anxiety-reducing techniques and anxiety medication. We recommend Sileo, an effective and easy to administer treatment we carry at Pet Medical Center of Edmond, which can help with noise aversion.

Schedule an appointment at Pet Medical Center of Edmond online or by calling 405-757-2132.

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Scheduling Your Appointment Online Is Now Even Easier

Scheduling Your Appointment Online Is Now Even Easier

We’re excited to announce the launch of PetPartner App at Pet Medical Center of Edmond. Scheduling your appointment online and receiving reminders about upcoming appointments will be easier than ever. Download the free app on your iPhone or Android phone and sign up to:

  • Make your pet’s next appointment
  • Sign up for text and email reminders
  • Keep track of all your pet’s care, including vaccination and appointment history

Sign up for your free PetPartner App account today!

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Keep Your Pets Safe From the Heat This Summer

Keep Your Pets Safe From the Heat This Summer

Pets have a difficult time staying cool during the hot summer months. This means they are at an increased risk of dehydration and heat stroke. As an owner, it is important you take the necessary precautions to ensure your cat or dog is safe this summer.

  • Always have abundant fresh, clean water readily accessible to your pet.
  • Never leave your pet in a hot car. Vehicle interiors can soar to nearly 160°F on an average summer day, quickly overheating your pet to fatal temperatures.
  • Do not over-exercise your pet. Outdoor activity in the summer months is more taxing than during cooler times of the year. Pets are susceptible to heat exhaustion and dehydration after even moderate exercise.
  • When possible, keep pets indoors, in a cool, air-conditioned area.
  • Do not shave or trim your pet. Their coat is an important part of their natural cooling system, keeping the sun’s harmful rays from penetrating to the skin, causing overheating and sunburn.

Overheating Warning Signs

Symptoms of overheating include excessive panting (short, shallow breaths), increased heart rate, drooling, and in advanced cases, seizures, collapse, vomiting and bloody diarrhea. If you observe these symptoms, please contact Pet Medical Center of Edmond immediately at 405-348-6580, we will advise you on how to best proceed.

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Preparing for Emergencies When You Have Pets

Preparing for Emergencies When You Have Pets

As we all know, it’s currently tornado season, which means we must regularly take stock of our emergency kits and plan for any and all potential emergency situations. Here are a few tips for keeping your pets safe during a tornado.

Update identification. If you’ve recently moved, make sure your pets’ identifications match your current address in case they become frightened and run off.

Store supplies for them, too. Add pet food, extra water and a litter box and/or puppy pads to your emergency kit. It’s also a good idea to bring your pets’ crates into the shelter so they have somewhere safe and familiar to hide.

Pet-proof your shelter. Remove any items that could poison your pets if they ingested them, and close off small areas where your pets could get stuck.

Bring your pets inside. No matter what, even if your cats spend most of their time outdoors, you need to bring them inside your shelter with you if there is a tornado warning in place.

For more tips on protecting your pets during a tornado, contact Pet Medical Center of Edmond online or by calling 405-757-2132.

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Microchip Your Pets Before Your Busy Summer

Microchip Your Pets Before Your Busy Summer

One out of every three pets will become lost at some point in their lives, and pets are more likely to become lost in the summer since they spend more time outside and in unfamiliar areas. Microchip implants can help reunite these lost pets with their owners. Not only are microchips effective, they’re permanent, too. You’ll never have to worry about your pet’s microchip falling off, like you do with a collar.

Once it is placed, the chip transmits radio waves that include a tracking number. When your pet is brought to a veterinarian or animal shelter or found by animal control, authorities plug your pet’s microchip ID into a database and, from there, pull up your contact information and let you know that your pet has been found.

Pet Medical Center of Edmond believes microchipping is the safest, most effective method of pet identification available, as it helps reunite more than 15,000 lost pets with their owners every month.

You can schedule an appointment to get your pet microchipped online or by calling us at 405-757-2132.

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Wellness Packages at Pet Medical Center of Edmond

One year in your pet’s life is equivalent to approximately seven human years. Many health problems or changes can occur in that amount of time! Our wellness packages were designed to consider all the possible health issues that could affect your pets throughout their lives.

Our kitten and puppy packages are tailored to what the little ones need in their first years, including vaccinations, spaying or neutering, and disease screenings. They also include several products, such as food, treats, and preventatives, to help your pet start out right.

Adult and senior pets’ needs vary based on their health, so we offer several different wellness packages for adult and senior dogs and cats. These packages all include an annual wellness exam, vaccination updates, disease screenings, and an extra exam to be used for any reason during the year. Based on your pet’s needs, additional screenings may be necessary, and we have packages to accommodate those pets, too.

Our packages promote preventative health care for your pets and are convenient and affordable for you. Pets are great at hiding signs of disease, so with these packages, we can find problems earlier and start treatment earlier.  We want your pets to have long and healthy lives!

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U.S. State Dogs: Does Oklahoma Need a State Dog?

Oklahoma has a state game bird (the turkey) and even a state insect (the honeybee) and even a state furbearer (the raccoon). But despite the state being populated with dog enthusiasts, we are not among the 12 states that have declared an official state dog. Oklahoma, are we ready for a state dog?

Who has one and how does Oklahoma get one?
Maryland was the first state to name a dog breed as a state symbol, naming the Chesapeake Bay Retriever in 1964. Pennsylvania followed the year after, naming the Great Dane as its official breed. Other official state dogs also are indigenous to their state, including the Boston Terrier in Massachusetts and the Alaskan Malamute in Alaska. Pennsylvania picked the Great Dane not because of its origin, but because its role in its history. The Great Dane was introduced by early settlers in Pennsylvania who used the breed as hunting and working dogs.

Champions of designating state dogs often point to the role dogs play in our society, their psychological benefits and to educating people about responsible pet ownership.
Not to mention that people simply love dogs. Two of the more recent successful campaigns to name a state dog have been started by schoolchildren. In 2007, Alaskan kindergarten student Paige Hill’s idea created the campaign for the Alaskan Malamute which would convince Rep. Berta Gardner to support the bill in 2009, with it becoming law in 2010. Elementary school students from Bedford, New Hampshire, won their campaign for the Chinook in 2009.

There have been a variety of campaigns in other states to select a state dog; some are still under way and some have failed. Most recently Maine and Oregon proposed state dogs. Check out a list of all state dogs, here.

What does it take to get an Oklahoma State Dog?
Symbols are often adopted after a concerted effort by citizens to have a significant item recognized for its importance to the state.

In Oklahoma, a state symbol is typically done via executive order or legislative resolution, said Liz McNeill, director of Communications and Public Affairs at the Oklahoma House of Representatives.

“If you followed the path of legislative resolution you would need a legislator to carry the bill,” McNeill explained.

Citizens, organizations or school children often research a particular symbol and approach a law maker requesting to bring forward a bill. They track the bill through the Legislative process, often providing further information about their request to the Legislature.
If approved by the Legislature, the bill is enacted and there is a new state symbol.
To learn more about Oklahoma’s current state symbols and state animals, click here.

Most popular dogs in Oklahoma
So with a process laid out, what dogs would be good candidates for Oklahoma’s state dog?
According to BarkPost the English Bulldog is the most popular dog in the state, and Rover.com lists Boxers as Oklahoma’s top dog. The good, old Labrador Retriever won out in 38 states, and was once again listed as America’s favorite dog by the American Kennel Club in 2016.

It’s not easy to choose one dog over another. As any pet owner would tell you their favorite breed is THE best breed. Recalling the Oklahoma state vegetable is a watermelon controversy, perhaps we should follow Colorado’s example which declared shelter or rescue as the official Colorado state pet. Declaring Oklahoma service dogs such as K-9 officers or search and rescue dogs that have played such an important role in our states recent history sounds like a perfectly uncontroversial solution.

US State Dog

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Signs of Dental Disease in Dogs

Signs of Dental Disease in Dogs

Periodontal disease, or dental disease, affects more adult dogs and cats than any other health condition. The American Veterinary Medical Association found that up to 85% of adult dogs have dental disease. Unfortunately, many dog owners do not know the warning signs of dog dental disease, how it is treated, or how deadly it can become. To help your dog live a long, healthy life, you need to understand these key points of dental disease.

Can Dog Dental Disease Cause Other Health Problems?
Dog dental disease occurs when bacteria and plaque stay on the teeth for an extended period of time, usually five days. When the material hardens into tartar, it causes the teeth to erode. As the bacteria grow, they may produce different strains of bacteria and toxins, which can result in internal organ failure.

How Widespread Is Dog Dental Disease?
Your dog’s risk for developing dog dental disease increases by 20 % every year after age 3. This means that your furry-kid will have a 100 % risk for developing the disease by the time they are 8 years old. However, dog dental disease is completely preventable if you know what to look for.

What Are the Signs of Dog Dental Disease?
The hallmark sign of dog dental disease is and will always be bad breath. However, many dog owners tend to think their dog’s breath will always smell bad. If you have brushed your dog’s teeth, with an appropriate dog toothpaste, and the odor does not clear up, your dog likely has dental disease.

Malaise is the second most-common sign of dog dental disease. The disease causes pain and discomfort for your dog, in the same way you would feel bad if you had a severe toothache or cavity. Since the condition may cause other health problems, you may notice lethargy, restlessness, excessive gnawing on toys, reduced appetite, excessive water consumption, or symptoms of other medical issues, such as changes in excretory habits.

What Can Be Done to Prevent Dog Dental Disease?
Brushing your dog’s teeth is the most effective way to prevent dog dental disease. Brush his or her teeth every day if your dog will allow it. For dogs that won’t, pet-product manufacturers have created a ton of different dental cleaning products, such as Greenies, to help with reducing plaque and tartar buildup. However, you should not substitute all brushing for the use of such dental edibles. For easy at home dental care, you can start by applying a small amount of tooth paste to your finger and quickly/gently rub along the top teeth and gum line.

Additionally, you should stray from feeding your dog table food. Human food may contain harmful amounts of bacteria and disrupt your dog’s state of nutrition, which will exacerbate dog dental disease. Also, you should not give your dog liquids containing sugars, unless directed to do so by your veterinarian.

Your dog’s teeth should be cleaned annually by a professional. The process is simple, and your dog is usually placed under anesthesia to complete a full set of dental radiographs and cleaning. Furthermore, this is the treatment for dog’s already suffering from dental disease. Depending on the severity of the condition, your dog may need to take antibiotics, steroids, or other medication to help deal with the infectious nature of dog dental disease.

Although dog dental disease affects the vast majority of dogs, regardless of breed, you can take action against it. By understanding the disease and encouraging proactive behaviors, you can stop this debilitating disease. Remember dog dental disease is completely preventable.

If you have any more questions about your pooch’s dental care, book an appointment online to work with our professionals who have made animal care their lives work.

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New Year’s Resolutions: Healthy Pets

Pet Resolutions 2016

The new year is just around the corner, and we’re sure you have a personal resolution in mind. But what about making one for your pet? Many of the same resolutions you make for yourself you can also apply to your animal.

Before you make your pet resolution for next year, read what Dr. Hufnagel recommends for keeping your pet healthy, and check out other pet parent’s resolutions.

Three Pet New Year’s resolutions to consider from Dr. Hufnagel

 

Resolution 1: Exercise more.

exercise moreThe physical health benefits of regular and moderate exercise are obvious. Exercise in pets, as well as humans, aids in weight management, keeps muscles toned and joints limber, and benefits cardiovascular health.

Often overlooked is the mental health benefit of regular exercise. Pets respond well to structure and regimentation, so schedule exercise regularly twice a day, even if only for 10 to 15 minutes.  Try to induce panting with the exercise.

Dogs are obvious candidates for walks outside the home. A change in scenery and forced exercise is much better than simply letting the dog out into the back yard.

Most cats will enjoy active toys, like chasing a laser pointer around the room, batting at a toy at the end of a fishing pole or playing with any variety of commercial chase-a-ball toys. Again, try to exercise your pet enough to induce panting.

Resolution 2: Lose weight.

Obesity in pets is caused by a major malnutrition problem. While exercise is certainly helpful, reducing or controlling daily calorie intake is the most effective way to manage weight.  Obesity contributes to diabetes and arthritis in both dogs and cats.

Use of a measuring cup and feeding individual meals is much better than simply keeping the food bowl full for free-choice feeding.

Eliminate junk food treats. If sugar or a sugar source is listed within the first three to four ingredients on the label, then you know you have a junk food. I also suggest breaking up a treat into small chunks. Pets don’t care if the treat is big, but rather they simply respond to the treat event. Feeding fewer treats — even healthy treats — but increasing the number of treat events is a great way to psychologically soften the blow of reducing calorie intake.

Certain fruits and vegetables can be offered to pets. Even many cats enjoy melon or cantaloupe-type fruits. But be careful: DO NOT OFFER RAISINS OR GRAPES, as this fruit can induce kidney damage in some animals.

Resolution 3: Improve dental health.  

Dental disease continues to be the most overlooked preventative health problem in the pet population. Dental plaque produces tartar and gingivitis, which then progresses to periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is quite uncomfortable and painful, and the bacterial infection of the mouth will also have negative impact on other parts of the body. Dogs and cats require dental x-rays and cleaning similar to humans.

Once daily brushing of teeth is by far the least costly and most effective preventative tool for pets, as well as humans. Brushing of the teeth of dogs and cats requires a slow training process. Ask any of our staff for training instructions.

2016 New Year’s resolutions from our pet parents:

Christy with Maya

Christy with Maya

Christy would like to spend more time taking her dogs Champ and Zeus with her to the dog park because they really enjoy it. Her hope for her cat, Maya, is that she is able to gain more weight with the medical treatment she is receiving at Pet Medical Center.

 

Jeremy with Faeden

Jeremy with Faeden

Jeremy’s New Year’s Resolution for Faeden is to get a teeth cleaning from the veterinarian.

 


Melissa with Ivey and Rosie

Melissa with Ivey and Rosie

Melissa’s goal for these lovely ladies in 2016 is to exercise more with walks around the neighborhood and Lake Hefner.

 

Kamille with Willow

Kamille with Willow

Kamille’s New Year’s resolution is to make Willow her hiking and running buddy.

We at Pet Medical Center of Edmond are so thankful to have all of you as a part of our extended family, and we wish you a happy 2016.

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Holiday Pet Hazards

holiday pet dangers

Christmas is the most wonderful time of year for all involved: pets and humans alike. Some of our favorite things about this time of year are the decorations, food and festivities.

Our pets love all of these things as well and that’s why this time of year, requires extra safety precautions for our pets.

Christmas Trees

Live

  • Keep clear of loose pine needles because if ingested they can puncture the intestinal wall.
  • Don’t add extra chemicals or additives to the water pot that the tree is in because if your pet drinks it, it could be fatal.

Fake

  • Don’t let the cats climb around in the Christmas tree due the fire hazards it may cause, a possible electrocution from chewing on the light wires or sharp objects which could hurt them , try using a repellent spray such as apple bitter, available at Petsmart, to spray around the tree.
  • Mount the tree to a secure wall for large dogs that have the infamous swinging tail and those cats that you just can’t keep from swinging on the tree branches.

Decorations

Decorations are what makes the Christmas tree come alive but they can be more of a nuisance when it comes to our pets.

  • Try not to use glass ornaments because your pets may mistake them for toys and play with them. When ornament breaks, your pet could ingest the pieces causing internal issues or because they are glass and on the floor anyone could get hurt.
  • Don’t use tinsel. It can be deadly to our pets if ingested, so we recommend just leaving it off of the tree.

Lights & Candles

When it comes to young kittens and puppies, everything is free game for chew toys.

  • Christmas lights can cause electrocution and should be secured to the wall or covered with cord covers.
  • Be sure to keep those yummy smelling candles out of the reach of the swinging tail, dogs can knock them over with their tails causing a fire or getting burned badly. Never leave candles unattended or blow them out when leaving the room.

Holiday Plants

Holiday plants such as poinsettias, holly and mistletoe are poisonous to our pets.

  • Keep all holiday plants out of your pet’s reach or use an artificial alternative.
  • Holly, when ingested, can cause pets to suffer nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Mistletoe can cause gastrointestinal upset and cardiovascular problems.
  • Many varieties of lilies can cause kidney failure in cats if ingested. If you choose to decorate with these plants, keep them out of the reach of your pets or opt for the artificial version.

Read this article, for more on the dangers of toxic plants and the specific plants that are harmful to pets.

Holiday Treats

Let’s be honest, the food is one of the best parts about this time of year but not all foods are safe for your pets.

  • Make sure your pets stay on their normal diet and caution visitors to not feed your pet table scraps or treats.
  • Do not feed your pet turkey or chicken bones. These bones splinter and can get lodged in the intestinal wall requiring surgery.
  • Say no to giving your pet high fat foods such as gravies, potato latkes and poultry skins that may cause your pets to go into serious intestinal distress.
  • Keep specialty candies, nuts and treats out of your pet’s reach. Things like dark chocolate, candies and nuts can cause diarrhea, vomiting and obstruction in their throat or intestinal tract.

For a full list of toxic foods, visit VPI’s toxic food guide for pets.

Having Company

Tis the season for having your friends and family over but make sure you also keep a close eye on your pet.

  • Watch when guest come in and out that your sneaky pet does not slip out open doors. Since this is a likely situation make sure ahead of time, that your pet is properly collared and tagged. It would also be a good idea to have your pet micro-chipped so if they escape, it will be easier to find them.
  • Ask guests to keep an eye out for pets under foot and remind them that sometimes your normally friendly dog or cat may be less willing to deal with the enthusiastic children and rooms full of unfamiliar people.
  • Provide a quiet place with a blanket and fresh water for your pets to retreat to when the festivities get too stressful.

We at Pet Medical Center of Edmond wish you and your fur families a fun and safe holiday season.

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Protect your Pets from the Winter’s Chill

Winter-Pet-Tips

Dealing with the unpredictable weather changes in Oklahoma is much like riding a roller coaster. As we ride from Fall into Winter, it is important that we prepare our pets for the cooler months ahead.

Your pets bodies react very similar the way human’s bodies do when it’s cold outside. Just as we are prone to Frost Bite and other illnesses that go along with the winter season, as are your furry friends.

What Can you do to Prepare your Pets for Winter?

Bundle Em’ up

To keep warm we wear coats, snow boots and scarves. Your animals should also have a collection of Winter attire. This is especially helpful for your pets that have a short hair coats. If you’re looking for a local boutique to get your little guy a cozy sweater or coat, we recommend stopping by One Lucky Mutt and you might want to check out A1 Pet Emporium, as well. Don’t forget about keeping their paws warm. Try some paw covers (booties) they can help protect your pet’s paws against cuts on sharp, icy surfaces as well as snow build up between the toes.

Limit Cold Weather Exposure

Be sure to acclimate your pets to the cold weather. If your pets don’t reside outside for long periods of time during the warmer months, then don’t expect them to be able to spend extended amounts of time out during the cold months. A pet’s ability to tolerate cold weather varies from pet to pet based on many things: age, activity level, hair coat, health and body fat stores. The cold weather may require you to shorten the lengths of those W-A­-L-K’s and some days you may not even use that word around them.  Pets with thicker hair coats tend to tolerate the cold weather a bit longer than those with short hair but precautions are still needed for both.

Don’t use unsafe Deicers

Although we don’t see much snow or ice here, there are still those times we get the infamous ice storm or heavy snow. Many people will use deicers on their vehicle windshields or sidewalks and driveways. These products can raise the risk of poisoning your pets if their paws and underbellies are not cleaned after being outside or taking walks. Using pet safe deicers on your property will protect your pets and other pets in your neighborhood. Most pet stores carry this but you could also try Safepaw.

Keep Outside Pets Warm

If you have outdoor pets (dog or cat) it is important to give them a warm shelter out of the cold. Ideally, bringing them inside is best but the garage can be yet another option.  If neither of these options are possible, a nice dog house, elevated off of the ground will be sufficient.

Be sure to place straw or wood shavings covered with warm bedding in the doghouse. Be sure the doghouse is of sufficient size for your pet and the bedding adequate to keep them warm. Warming pads placed under blankets are also available for dog houses but consider fire hazards. There are a variety of choices when it comes to choosing the best doghouse for your pets; wood, plastic, insulated and heated. When the temperatures drop to below freezing, sleeping outside without the proper shelter can be deadly.

Check your Car

Because cats also like to keep warm, they have a tendency to climb under the hood of vehicles for shelter. Check underneath your car, honk the horn or bang on the hood of your vehicle before starting the engine.

Provide Proper Nutrition

Let us not forget how important fresh water and nutrition is for the winter months as well. It doesn’t take long for water to freeze during those frigid winter months. Be sure to check the water bowls multiple times a day to break the layer of ice so that they can access their water. Outdoor pets will require more calories in the winter to generate enough body heat and energy to keep them warm. For questions about your pet’s nutrition needs during the winter months, be sure to consult with one of our veterinarians.

The best tip we can give you is to tune into your pets needs during the winter months. If they are showing signs of anxiety, whining, weakness, slow or stiff movement or no movement at all. Contact our office to schedule an appointment immediately.

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What Thanksgiving Foods are Bad for Dogs?

A-Dogs-Thanksgiving-FINAL

 

It’s always important to pay attention to what your dog is eating. But the Holidays are a busy time and it makes it more challenging to babysit your pup to be sure they are not devouring what could potentially harm them. Take a look at the above graphic to see a cheat sheet of the Thanksgiving foods you’ll want to keep out of your dog’s reach.

The foods that are listed above, can not only harm your dog, but some of them are potentially life threatening, if your dog takes in a large quantity of them. If you see your dog acting off, and you think they may have eaten any of the above foods, it’s best to bring them in for check up.

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What are the best ways to exercise with your dog?

woman working out

Working out with your canine can be a great experience for both you and your dog. Conversely, if not approached in the correct way, it can be a terrible experience for all involved. By following a few guidelines, you can experience a fun and a playful way to bond while reaping the benefits of cardiovascular activity.

You should respect the health of your pet as you do your own well-being. Before exercising with your dog, take him in for a check-up to make sure your dog is physically fit enough to handle a long run or longer periods of play. Consider your dog’s age, health issues and the obstacles you may encounter while on your excursions.

Remember, this workout is more for your dog’s benefit than yours. If you have an older dog, you may have to take it a little easier than if your dog is just a pup. However, if you have a puppy, make sure he or she is up to the task before getting too far to turn around and make it back safely.

Tips for Working Out with Your Dog

Start off slow to increase longevity

In regards to working out with your canine pal, always start slow to warm up. After warming up, be sure to build up your dog’s stamina over a period of time before attempting to perform a long run or hard work out. Again, make sure they have the ability to do so before attempting physical activity. Humans would train for a marathon months out before competing on race day, building up mileage over time. Take this same thought process into your dog’s regimen as well. Don’t forget the post-workout routine.  It is recommended that you walk your pooch for at least 10 minutes after they are through working out to make sure their muscles can properly cool down.

Consider your dog’s breed

Whether you have a large retriever or a small weenie dog, exercise is important. Weight issues can adversely affect the way they live and even worse, their lifespan. Consider your dog’s breed before implementing a workout routine. Some dogs are built as sprinters, so bringing them along for your 10K training runs may not be your best bet, but going to the park and playing fetch will be right up their alley. Other dog breeds can handle longer endurance-based activities and can tolerate longer distances.

Weather will affect their performance

The environment and its elements are commonly disregarded when thinking about pets. A cool, damp morning might be perfect temperature-wise but can increase the chance of your dog slipping while running. During the summer, cooler morning runs or late evening walks will help both you and your pet to avoid heat strokes. Restricting activity to the cooler times in the day will also help your pet avoid hot surfaces that may burn their pads and cause damage to their paws. Humans have shoes to protect our feet in the middle of the day, but our pets don’t have that luxury.

Hydration is Key

If you take anything away from this article, make sure it’s this: stay hydrated. It’s always a great idea to have water on your for both you and your pooch to keep the liquids flowing. Remember, our pets depend on us greatly. Don’t push it too hard, as exercising should always be fun for our furry friends.

Afterward, be sure to check up on your pet. If you go on a hike, check for burrs and ticks, scrapes and cuts and allow your pet to properly rest before your next outing.

Advice from Professional Dog Trainer, Kris Butler, at American Dog Obedience Center

Consider your dog’s stage of life and current physical condition

Kris emphasizes that when trying to assess an exercise regimen for your dog, you should also consider the age of the dog and the individual’s current condition. Young dogs’ growth plates should be monitored closely by a veterinarian before engaging them in strenuous activity. Kris is a certified a Fit Paws Master Trainer. She recommends once you’ve decided on an exercise program, look at using Fit Paws inflatable equipment. Because the surface is unstable, like that of a yoga ball, it will work your dog’s physical core and will help increase their balance. Utilizing an effective workout plan for you dog will help add to their quality of life.

Working out should never be work for your pet. Make a game out of it and make sure they’re enjoying themselves. Always engage with your pet throughout the workout and be aware of your pet’s tendencies during activity. A quick run or a long hike can be an extremely gratifying activity for you and as long as you both are happy, you’ll have a very satisfied and equally grateful pup.

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Paws for Life Advice: How Can You Help the Local Shelter?

Paws-for-life-fundraising-event

Every dog and cat deserves a loving family; unfortunately local shelters are overwhelmed by the high number of animals in their facilities. Alongside other organizations seeking to help, Paws for Life is a group that assists shelters by rescuing and helping healthy animals find good homes and families. Paws for Life is a nonprofit organization who works in partnership with the Edmond Animal Shelter and assists rescue groups primarily with the medical costs of the animal.

Shelter Facts from the National SPCA

  • Approximately 2.7 million shelter animals are adopted each year (1.4 million dogs and 1.3 million cats).
  • Each year, approximately 2.7 million animals are euthanized (1.2 million dogs and 1.4 million cats).
  • About 649,000 animals that enter shelters as strays are returned to their owners. Of those, 542,000 are dogs and only 100,000 are cats.

Funding is needed for these animals and if the community can increase donations and time volunteering there is still hope. Some things you can start doing to help are to adopt from the shelter or give a donation towards an organization with a good cause like Paws for Life. By doing these two things, you will aid in the mission of seeing every animal cared for in the way that it should be.

3 Ways to Lessen the Number of Animals in the Shelter

Pick the right pet for your family

Before you get a new pet, be sure you honestly consider important questions like “How much time can you spend with a pet each day?” or “How will a pet affect your other relationships? “ When you adopt a new pet you never want it to be an impulse decision, it needs to be a commitment you are certain of and that you have the ability to love and care for this animal. Visit our “Choosing a Pet” page to answer more of these questions.

If your pet gets lost, locate them quickly

Microchipping your pets could be well worth it if they get lost. Many people choose to microchip their animals in case their pet runs off, or gets loose they will be more likely to reunite with them quickly and safely.

Microchipping Myths

I don’t want a stranger to be able to access my personal information through my pet’s microchip.

Most scanners will only show your pet’s microchip number and the phone number for the company to which it’s registered. Pet owners tell the company what information they want to release to the person who finds their lost pet. Some companies will even set up a reunion for you.

I don’t want to put my pet through the pain of getting a microchip.

Microchipping your pet is quick and is similar to a vaccination. A needle containing the chip is inserted underneath your pet’s skin, the chip is released, and the needle is removed — a process which takes only a few seconds. Typically, we either numb the area where we will insert the chip first or implant it during another sedated procedure.

Microchipping costs too much.

At Pet Medical Center of Edmond, it’s inexpensive and includes a one year registration with HomeAgain. It will be more than worth it if your animal ever gets loose.

Give to your local shelter

Maybe you know you are too busy to have a pet or your heart breaks when you think about homeless animals. You can donate your time and volunteer with the animals or you can donate financially towards their medical needs. Remember that every little bit you donate, whether time or cash, will help every animal to achieve the highest quality of life.

Volunteer Story

“I will never forget Hooch.  He was an 11 year old dog with a snaggle tooth and a family came and adopted him and kept him for the few years he had left. I thought this was sweet,” said Lauri McDougall, legal assistant and former volunteer at Paws for Life.

At Pet Medical Center of Edmond, we believe in doing everything we can to make animals happy and live a long life. We are teaming up with Paws for Life September 4th – November 10th. When you donate any amount up $2,000 we will match your donation and give it to Paws for Life.

You can also purchase raffle tickets in our office for a chance win one of the following prizes a cat or dog goody basket containing treats, food, an annual exam and more.

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