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More Thanksgiving tips for you and your pet

Nov 22 2017

Thanksgiving Pet Safety

From the AVMA website

 

 

Thanksgiving is a special holiday that brings together family and friends, but it also can carry some hazards for pets. Holiday food needs to be kept away from pets, and pet owners who travel need to either transport their pets safely or find safe accommodations for them at home. Follow these tips to keep your pets healthy and safe during the holiday.

Poison Risks

Overindulging in the family feast can be unhealthy for humans, but even worse for pets: Fatty foods are hard for animals to digest. Poultry bones can damage your pet’s digestive tract. And holiday sweets can contain ingredients that are poisonous to pets.

  • Keep the feast on the table—not under it.  Eating turkey or turkey skin – sometimes even a small amount – can cause a life-threatening condition in pets known as pancreatitis. Fatty foods are hard for animals to digest, and many foods that are healthy for people are poisonous to pets – including onions, raisins and grapes. If you want to share a Thanksgiving treat with your pet, make or buy a treat that is made just for them.
  • No pie or other desserts for your pooch. Chocolate can be harmful for pets, even though many dogs find it tempting and will sniff it out and eat it. The artificial sweetener called xylitol – commonly used in gum and sugar-free baked goods – also can be deadly if consumed by dogs or cats.
  • Yeast dough can cause problems for pets, including painful gas and potentially dangerous bloating.
  • Put the trash away where your pets can’t find it.  A turkey carcass sitting out on the carving table, or left in a trash container that is open or easily opened, could be deadly to your family pet. Dispose of turkey carcasses and bones – and anything used to wrap or tie the meat, such as strings, bags and packaging – in a covered, tightly secured trash bag placed in a closed trash container outdoors (or behind a closed, locked door).
  • Be careful with decorative plants. Don’t forget that some flowers and festive plants can be toxic to pets. These include amaryllis, Baby’s Breath, Sweet William, some ferns, hydrangeas and more. The ASPCA offers lists of plants that are toxic to both dogs and cats, but the safest route is simply to keep your pets away from all plants and table decorations.
  • Quick action can save lives. If you believe your pet has been poisoned or eaten something it shouldn’t have, call your veterinarian or local veterinary emergency clinic immediately. You may also want to call the ASPCA Poison Control Hotline: 888-426-4435. Signs of pet distress include: sudden changes in behavior, depression, pain, vomiting, or diarrhea. Contact your veterinarian immediately.

Precautions for Parties

If you’re hosting a party or overnight visitors, plan ahead to keep your pets safe and make the experience less stressful for everyone.

  • Visitors can upset your pets. Some pets are shy or excitable around new people or in crowds, and Thanksgiving often means many visitors at once and higher-than-usual noise and activity levels. If you know your dog or cat is nervous when people visit your home, put him/her in another room or a crate with a favorite toy. This will reduce the emotional stress on your pet and protect your guests from possible injury. If your pet is particularly upset by houseguests, talk to your veterinarian about possible solutions to this common problem.
    • If any of your guests have compromised immune systems (due to pregnancy, some diseases, or medications or treatments that suppress the immune system), make sure they’re aware of the pets (especially exotic pets) in your home so they can take extra precautions to protect themselves.
    • If you have exotic pets, remember that some people are uncomfortable around them and that these pets may be more easily stressed by the festivities. Keep exotic pets safely away from the hubbub of the holiday.
  • Watch the exits. Even if your pets are comfortable around guests, make sure you watch them closely, especially when people are entering or leaving your home. While you’re welcoming hungry guests and collecting coats, a four-legged family member may make a break for it out the door and become lost.
  • Identification tags and microchips reunite families. Make sure your pet has proper identification with your current contact information – particularly a microchip with up-to-date, registered information. That way, if they do sneak out, they’re more likely to be returned to you. If your pet isn’t already microchipped, talk to your veterinarian about the benefits of this simple procedure.
  • Watch your pets around festive decorations. Special holiday displays or candles are attractive to pets as well as people. Never leave a pet alone in an area with a lit candle; it could result in a fire. And pine cones, needles and other decorations can cause intestinal blockages or even perforate an animal’s intestine if eaten.

Travel Concerns

Whether you take your pets with you or leave them behind, take these precautions to safeguard them when traveling over the Thanksgiving holiday or at any other time of the year.

Your pet needs a health certificate from your veterinarian if you’re traveling across state lines or international borders, whether by air or car. Learn the requirements for any states you will visit or pass through, and schedule an appointment with your veterinarian to get the needed certificate within the timeframes required by those states.

Never leave pets alone in vehicles, even for a short time, regardless of the weather.

Pets should always be safely restrained in vehicles. This means using a secure harness or a carrier, placed in a location clear of airbags. This helps protect your pets if you brake or swerve suddenly, or get in an accident; keeps them away from potentially poisonous food or other items you are transporting; prevents them from causing dangerous distractions for the driver; and can prevent small animals from getting trapped in small spaces. Never transport your pet in the bed of a truck.

Talk with your veterinarian if you’re traveling by air and considering bringing your pet with you. Air travel can put pets at risk, especially short-nosed dogs. Your veterinarian is the best person to advise you regarding your own pet’s ability to travel.

Pack for your pet as well as yourself if you’re going to travel together. In addition to your pet’s food and medications, this includes bringing medical records, information to help identify your pet if it becomes lost, first aid supplies, and other items. 

Are you considering boarding your dog while you travel? Talk with your veterinarian to find out how best to protect your pet from canine flu and other contagious diseases, and to make sure your pet is up-to-date on vaccines.

Food Safety

Don’t forget to protect your family and loved ones from foodborne illnesses while cooking your Thanksgiving meal. Hand washing, and safe food handling and preparation, are important to make sure your holiday is a happy one. The U.S. Department of Agriculture offers tips for handling, thawing and cooking turkey, as well as saving your leftovers.

Thanksgiving Safety for your Pet!

Nov 17 2017

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Fall-time Fun with Leaves!

Nov 6 2017

Fall is such a wonderful time of year. Apple picking, cider, corn mazes, foliage and of course – big piles of leaves! Even though dogs may be drawn to attractive leaf piles like this, it’s very important to be aware that tick season is still upon us, and ticks love to hang out in those piles of leaves. Here are some tips to keep your pet tick-free this fall:

  • Don’t let ticks cozy up. Eliminate their favorite environments, such as leaf and garden litter, where ticks can sometimes survive even into winter.
  • Check for ticks frequently.
  • Continue using tick control and repellent products, especially if you spend a lot of time outdoors with your pet enjoying activities like hiking, camping, or hunting.
  • Ask your veterinarian about regular screening for tick-borne infections. (The Companion Animal Parasite Council recommends screening annually for tick-borne infections.)

Fortunately, as long as you’re aware of parasites, and ready to protect your dog, leaves can be what they should be; fun! Speaking of fun, check out the cutest videos of dogs having too much fun in piles of leaves!

1. Puppy pile-jumper!
This little Australian Shepherd can’t decide if he wants to jump in the leaves, run around the leaves or chase a stick – and we can’t decide which part is the cutest!

 
 

Video from @ruxin_and_finnick.

2. Leaf digger
Adorable Boxer-Husky mix, Yeti sure seems to be searching for something! At least he looks like he’s having fun though!

Video from @attack_of_the_yeti.

3. Fun in slow-motion
Dogs playing in leaves are automatically cute, but when you put it slow-mo? It’s even better! Watch this beautiful Labrador Retriever try and catch all of the leaves at once.

Video from @danaallyse.

Want more slow-mo? Watch this amazing video of cats drinking water in slow-motion >>

4. Leaf pile, party of 3
Aren’t these three goofballs making you want to join in on the fun?

Video from @firelillycreations.

5. Tennis ball in a leaf pile
Fetch is even more fun! This dive-bombing Dalmatian will find the ball, no question!

Video from @elysemarie20.

 

 Article originally from pethealthnetwork.com 

 

Halloween Contest!

Oct 23 2017

Costume Contest! Please post a picture of your dog or cat in their Halloween costume.

Please go to our facebook page to post; www.facebook.com/PRAHvet

 2 winners- 1 free exam for a dog, and 1 free exam for a cat.

Please share our post to get the most likes for your picture.

The dog and cat with the most likes will win. We can't wait to see your pictures!!

 

Pet Halloween Safety

Oct 13 2017

 

7 Things You Can Do to Make Halloween Safer for Your Pet from the AVMA website

 
  1. members: Get client handoutDon't feed your pets Halloween candy, especially if it contains chocolate or xylitol (a common sugar substitute found in sugar-free candies and gum);
  2. Make sure your pet is properly identified (microchip, collar and ID tag) in case s/he escapes through the open door while you're distracted with trick-or-treaters;
  3. Keep lit candles and jack-o-lanterns out of reach of pets;
  4. If you plan to put a costume on your pet, make sure it fits properly and is comfortable, doesn't have any pieces that can easily be chewed off, and doesn't interfere with your pet's sight, hearing, breathing, opening its mouth, or moving. Take time to get your pet accustomed to the costume before Halloween, and never leave your pet unsupervised while he/she is wearing a costume;
  5. Keep glow sticks and glow jewelry away from your pets. Although the liquid in these products isn't likely toxic, it tastes really bad and makes pets salivate excessively and act strangely;
  6. If your pet is wary of strangers or has a tendency to bite, put him/her in another room during trick-or-treating hours or provide him/her with a safe hiding place;
  7. Keep your pet inside.

 

 

 

Listen to our Animal Tracks podcast "Halloween Pet Safety Tips" for more advice on ensuring your pet’s health and safety this Halloween. In addition, our Halloween safety video shown below is available on the AVMA's YouTube channel.

10 Great Reasons to Adopt a Cat from a Shelter

Oct 2 2017

adopted cat plays with toy

If you’re considering bringing a feline companion into your home, and wondering where to look, an animal shelter is a great option. There are so many reasons to adopt from a shelter, but here are 10 of my favorites. 

1. You’ll save more than one life by adopting a cat
According to the ASPCA, 3.2 million cats can be found in shelters every year and of these, about 860,000 are euthanized annually. Adopting a cat not only helps one of these many animals, looking for a home, but also opens a space for shelters and rescue groups to take in another cat.

2. It makes good financial sense to adopt a cat 
For a relatively low fee, you’ll take home a cat that is already spayed or neutered, up-to-date on vaccines and microchipped. Many shelters and rescues will also include extras in the adoption fee such as a cat collar, a bag of food or pet insurance.

3. The personality of an adopted cat is known
Cats in many shelters interact with their caretakers and volunteers every day, and these people really get to know their personalities. Particularly with adult cats, you can find a companion with the type of temperament you’re looking for. You could find a playful, active cat or a calmer feline who prefers cuddling and a quieter environment.

4. It’s good for your mental health to adopt a cat
According to Research Gate, owning a cat, or any pet you adopt from a shelter, has been shown to have positive effects on humans’ ability to cope with stress, anxiety, depression and loneliness1. Taking a cat home from a shelter can improve your sense of happiness and general well-being.

5. Adopting a cat is great for your heart! 
A recent study found that owning a cat may lead to a reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease and stroke2. This is an important finding considering the AHA/ASA says, “Stroke is the number 3 cause of death in women and number 4 cause of death in men.

6. Cats improve children’s resistance to asthma
According to Clinical & Experimental Allergy, research has found that early exposure to a cat in the home can actually reduce infants’ sensitization to the allergens cats produce3. As a result, kids have a reduced chance of developing allergic diseases.

7. There’s a wide variety of cats to adopt 
You can find any type of cat you want at a shelter, from kittens to seniors, short-haired to long-haired, all sizes and colors. In fact, if you’re looking for a specific breed, such as a Siamese, you can contact cat-specific rescue groups to find your new friend.

8. A cat can make your other pets happy
If you have another cat, or a cat-friendly dog, bringing another cat home from a shelter can help reduce feelings of loneliness during the day when you’re out. Of course, you will want to ask the shelter to help you “cat test” your dog, and if you have a cat, expect a period of adjustment before the new and current cats feel comfortable together.

9. Cats are perfect for apartment dwellers 
If you live in an apartment, condo or other small space, a cat can be an excellent companion because cats don’t require lots of room or daily walks like a dog. Cats are generally low maintenance and if you provide them with toys (like cat trees and window rests for enrichment), they make wonderful roommates.

10. Cats are excellent senior companions
Cats, particularly older, calmer cats, can provide loving companionship to older adults. They’re easy to care for, and you can find one at a shelter that matches your lifestyle with some helpful advice from the shelter staff and volunteers.

These are just 10 reasons– there are many more! To adopt a cat, you can visit Petfinder and Adopt-a-Pet to find cats in shelters and rescues near you. Your veterinary office or local pet stores can also provide referrals to rescue groups and many hold cat adoptions themselves.

If you have any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian – they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your pets.

Resources

  1. Wells, Deborah. The Effects of Animals on Human Health and Well-Being. (2009). Journal of Social Issues, Vol. 65, No. 3, 2009, pp. 523--543.https://www.researchgate.net/publication/249390276_The_Effects_of_Animal...
  2. Ogechi, I., Snook, K., Davis, B.M. et al. High Blood Press Cardiovasc Prev (2016) 23: 245. doi:10.1007/s40292-016-0156-1
  3. Hesselmar B, Aberg N, Aberg B, Eriksson B, Bjorksten B. (1999) Does early exposure to cat or dog protect against later allergy development? Clinical and Experimental Allergy, Vol 29, 611-617. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10231320

 

Pet Health Tips for Autumn

Sep 26 2017

Our Top Pet Health Tips for Autumn

Keep your furry friends healthy and happy this fall!
Dog Checkups & Preventive Care

Woman with her dog during the fall season

Ahhh, Fall! This time of year means football, crisp air, colorful foliage and even, depending on where you live, a little bit of snow. It’s a great time to get outside with your pet; for a dog, there’s nothing like a romp in the leaves, while for cats, midday sunbeams have never felt better as the days get shorter and the nights get colder. When it comes to keeping your pet healthy and helping him enjoy fall to the fullest, there are some things to keep in mind. Read on for our top fall pet tips.

#1. Watch out for ticks in fall
Just because fall is here doesn’t mean that ticks aren’t still lurking. In fact, according to the University of Rhode Island, many species of ticks are active even into the winter and can survive the first frost. Here are some tips to keep your pet tick-free this fall:

  • Don’t let ticks cozy up. Eliminate their favorite environments, such as leaf and garden litter, where ticks can sometimes survive even into winter.
  • Check for ticks frequently.
  • Continue using tick control and repellent products, especially if you spend a lot of time outdoors with your pet enjoying activities like hiking, camping, or hunting.
  • Ask your veterinarian about regular screening for tick-borne infections. (The Companion Animal Parasite Council recommends screening annually for tick-borne infections.)

Rat poison

#2. Beware rat poison and other rodenticides
Fall is the time of year when mice, rats, and other rodents start to scurry for warmth. And where do they find it? You guessed it – your home!

Be careful when it comes to mouse traps and rodenticides like rat and mouse poison. Nobody wants an infestation of mice, but many poisons that are currently on the market can be very harmful to dogs and cats. Direct ingestion can be deadly.  Make sure you talk to your veterinarian about methods of pest control that are safe for your pets.

Even if you don’t have a rodent problem or choose to deal with mice and rats humanely using live traps, you never know what methods your neighbors are using. The carcasses of rodents that have been killed by rodenticides can also be dangerous, so if you see the telltale tail dangling from your pet’s mouth, make sure he drops it and keep an eye on him, and if you think your pet has eaten any of the rodent, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Mushroom

#3. There is a fungus amongus!
In some regions of the country, fall is just as wet as spring. That means that more mushrooms dot backyards and forest floors. While most mushrooms are perfectly safe, there’s a small percentage that are highly toxic to our furry friends (and to us!). Check out this handy guide from the ASPCA to stay informed about toxic mushrooms, and if you think your pet has gobbled up a toxic mushroom, contact the ASCPA Animal Poison Control Center immediately!

#4. Feed your pet right
It’s getting colder out there, and cool temperatures mean more energy is needed to stay warm. You’ll probably need to feed your pet a bit more food – food generates body heat, so pets who spend a lot of time exercising outdoors need to eat more than in the summer. However, don’t start dishing out more food just yet – make sure you talk to your veterinarian first, as every pet’s needs are different. 

Chocolate

 

#5. Watch out for antifreeze toxicity
In preparing for the winter months ahead, people tend to use fall to winterize their cars. This often involves changing fluids such as antifreeze, which can be deadly for pets. Consider this: one to two teaspoons of the stuff can kill a 10-pound dog! Less can kill a 10-pound cat.1

Part of the problem is ethylene glycol, a substance in antifreeze that has a sickly-sweet smell that entices pets to lap it up. That’s why it’s important to clean up spills immediately and make sure your pets steer clear of the garage while you’re working on your vehicle. 

#6. Beware chocolate and hearty foods 
The fall and winter parallel our holiday seasons, when we ramp up our intake of hearty, heavy foods and sweets. It’s important to make sure your pets don’t get into any foods that can make them sick; for dogs, this means chocolate, grapes, and raisins are off limits because they are toxic.

Just because some foods aren’t technically considered toxic to pets doesn’t mean they’re safe. Rich, high-fat foods can cause stomach problems such as diarrhea and gastroenteritis and even more serious conditions like pancreatitis. Also, think about small food items that can be choking hazards, like turkey bones around Thanksgiving.  Talk to your veterinarian to make sure you know what’s safe and what’s not.  

#7. Be careful with decorations
Holidays mean decorations! But be careful about leaving irregularly shaped objects and trinkets around the house. While you might like to get into the seasonal spirit, dogs and cats do too – in the form of sampling, say, decorative gourds or other fall props. Eating strange objects can be dangerous and lead to foreign body obstruction. 

If you have any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian – they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your pets.

 

Welcome Dr. Coleman!

Sep 11 2017

PRAH is excited to announce that we have added a new doctor to our practice! Dr. Coleman will be working part time with us- seeing patients, conducting surgeries, and dentals. Welcome Dr. Coleman!!

Dr. Coleman graduated from the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University in 2010. She worked in private practice in Massachusetts for 3 years following graduation, before moving to Virginia with her husband where he pursued an education in medicine at Georgetown University. She recently relocated to Rhode Island and joined the PRAH family in June of 2017. Dr. Coleman loves running, hiking, gardening, and hanging out at home on the East Side of Providence with her dog and five cats.

Hurricane Harvey- Please help animals in need

Aug 30 2017

We are sending good thoughts to all affected by the flooding from Hurricane Harvey. HSUS and local Texas shelters are all working together to save animals in need due to the flooding. Want to help? Please check the link below or text LOVE to 20222 to donate $10 to the HSUS Disaster Relief Fund. Every little bit helps.

 

www.humanesociety.org/harvey

New Saturday Hours

Aug 2 2017

We are exited to announce that we are extending our Saturday hours! Previously we were open two Saturdays a month from 8am-12pm.

Starting this month we will be open 8am-3pm on 8/12 and 8/19

In September we will be open 8am-3pm on 9/16 and 9/30

Give us a call at 274-7724 or  to book an appoinment!