Living With Your Pet

Remember your pet is depending on you for its happiness and health.

Grooming

Dogs: It is essential to your dog’s well-being that you routinely bathe it, brush its teeth and trim its nail. Remember protect your pup’s eyes and ears when bathing. Also your veterinarian may recommend you not to bathe your puppy if it’s younger than 10 to 12 weeks old.

Cats: Cats are good at grooming themselves, but a bath can be given if necessary. It is also a good idea to regularly brush your cat to prevent hair from matting. If you need to bathe your cat do so somewhere where there is wood for the cat to grip to. Make sure to use shampoo for cats and kittens. Some tips put cotton balls in your kitten’s ears and use ophthalmic ointment for its eyes. Routinely brush your kitten’s teeth with a special tooth brush you can get from your veterinarian.

 

Mealtime

Puppies: there is a wide variety of foods and preparations that are available to you and your pup. Your veterinarian should be able to provide you with your main source of information to make the best choice for your pet. In general puppies are fed 3 times a day when they are 6 to 12 weeks old. Once they are 12 weeks to 6 months old they only need to be fed twice a day and once they are older than that they only need to be fed once or twice a day.

Kittens: dry foods are most often the economical choice that comes with the advantage that it will help reduce plaque and tartar buildup in your kitten’s teeth. How much you feed your cat or kitten will depend on its age, size and activity level. With dry food you can to it at free-choice or a set time, however with wet food you want to do it at a set time. Consult your veterinarian for the best diet for your cat or kitten.

 

Seasonal Care

Heat Stroke: it is very important to know that a heatstroke can kill or seriously injure your pet. Tips to avoid a heatstroke: never leave your pet in the car, especially on a warm day and exercise your pet during the cool part of the day. Look out for rapid breathing, loud panting or even staggering. If you see any of these contact a professional. Put your animal in a shady, airy area and sponge it off with cool water.

 

Flea Season: fleas cause your pet suffering and with the biting and scratching. It’s a vicious cycle, because they lay eggs and then new fleas are born. Adult fleas can cause your pet serious medical problems such as dermatitis, tapeworms and in some cases anemia. The best way to control fleas is with prevention, before flea season even starts, you should start address the problem. If it’s too late and your poor pet is feeling the pain of fleas don’t worry your veterinarian is a flea expert and can advise you on how to handle the problem.

 

Fireworks: it’s no surprise that your pet and fireworks just don’t mix. The sound can terrify your animal causing them to run away. Their ears are far more sensitive than our and the explosive noise can cause damage to their hearing.

 

Back to School: some cats and dogs will want to tag along when your kids walks are drives to school this can get them lost. Don’t take them for the car ride either, they will learn the way and could end out sneaking out of your yard to find their way to your child’s school. Before the new school year starts, give your kids and the dogs short periods of separation this will help when the school year actually starts.

 

The Holiday season and your cat: no surprise here that the holiday season can cause your cat some serious strife. Here are some items to look out for: mistletoes & artificial snow are poisonous, ornament fragments, string, ribbon and tinsel can cause serious stomach problems for your cat. Even light cords can cause shocks or burns.

 

Winter Weather: its bet to keep your pets inside during the winter months. If this option just isn’t possible then try elevating them off the group, or make sure their shelter is insulated or heated. Make sure they have warm water and extra calories to help keep them warm.

Your car’s engine: during the cold season it’s typical for some animals to climb on your vehicles engine to try and keep warm. Before starting your car honk the horn a few times to startle any possible animals out of there.

 

Frostbite and Snow Removal Salt: immediately remove any snow and salt from your pet’s paws. If the skin is frostbitten it will be red or gray and may even slough. Applying warm moist towels will help to though out the frost bite, however you should contact your veterinarian as soon as possible. Remember snow removal products are highly poisonous so keep it out of reach from your pets and children.

 

Holiday Winter Products and toxicity: although holiday decorations and plants are beautiful, some of them can be toxic to your animal. Below are some details about toxicities but please remember THESE ARE ONLY GENERAL GUIDES, WE RECOMMEND YOU SEEK PROFESSIONAL TREATMENT AS SOON AS POSSIBLE TO

 

ENSURE YOUR PET’S SAFETY.

 

Low Toxicity:

1. Poinsettia leaves & stems

2. Balsam, pine, cedar and fir

3. Angel hair (spun glass)

4. Christmas tree preservatives

5. Snow sprays & flock

6. Tree ornaments

7. Super glue

8. Styrofoam

9. Icicles (tinsel)

10. Crayons & paints

 

Moderate Toxicity:

1. Fireplace colors & salts

2. Plastic model cement

3. Holly berries and leaves

4. bubbling lights (methylene chloride)

5. Snow scenes (may contain salmonella)

6. Aftershaves, perfumes & alcoholic beverages

7. Chocolate (dark is more toxic than milk)

 

Highly Toxic:

1. Mistletoe (especially berries)

2. Epoxy adhesives & antifreeze

 

Special Notes: some items may be considered low or moderate toxicity but can still cause severe problems. For instance angel hair is considered to be of low toxicity but it can irritate eyes, skin and the gastrointestinal tract. Same goes for Christmas tree preservatives it varies on the amount ingested. Antifreeze can cause rapid death.

 

Final Holiday Notes: make sure your pets are welcomed if traveling, don’t let anyone give them any special treats that might make them sick. Be extra weary of foods, drinks, decorations, and electrical cords.

 

Recognizing your pet’s illnesses: only healthy pets are happy pets. So keep this in mind the American Veterinary Medical Association suggest that you consult your vet if your pet begins showing any of the following symptoms:

 

1. Abnormal discharges from: eyes, ears, nose, any opening on the body

2. Abnormal behavior: aggression, sluggishness

3. Abnormal lumps

4. Abnormal movements: limping, difficulty getting up or lying down.

5. Loss of appetite, visible weight loss or gain, excessive water consumption

6. Abnormal bowel movements: difficult, abnormal or uncontrolled

7. Excessive habits: head shaking, scratching, licking or biting parts of the body

8. Skin and fur changes: dandruff, hair loss, open sores, a ragged or dull coat

9. Foul breath, excessive tarter deposits

First Aid: the most effective emergency aid is when it is done quickly but calmly. Injured or sick animals tend to be in a frightened state which may make them dangerous, so if an emergency first aid is necessary remember to protect yourself even when it’s your own animal. The best way to handle a cat is with gloves or by wrapping it in a blanket. If you are handling a dog then you should use a muzzle. Always keep our phone number along with other emergency numbers with you in case of any questions of seriousness.

 

Family Pets: all animals run the risk of getting poisoned for a series of places. Here is a small list: snakes, plants and several materials around the home such as: pesticides, weed killers, lawn sprays, fertilizers and plants.

 

If your pet is poisoned here are some things you can do:

Keep your pet warm, try to determine when it was digested and what it was that was eaten. Don’t forget immediately contact us and your neatest poison control center.

 

It’s important to remember when you bring your pet in bring the container or label with of what the poison was with you. Most often poisoning is accidental, keeping this in mind keep your materials out of reach and emergency numbers handy.

 

 

 

 

About Kelly's Animal Hospital

Kelly’s Animal Hospital is a full-service veterinary medical facility, located in Port St. Lucie, Florida. The professional and courteous staff at Kelly’s Animal Hospital seeks to provide the best possible medical, surgical, and dental care for their highly-valued patients.

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150 NW Central Park Plaza

Port Saint Lucie, FL 34986

772-336-8111

772-336-7916

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