Tuesday, 20 March 2018

7 Household Dangers for Pets

As a pet owner, it’s likely that you use extra caution with certain chemicals and toxins in your home that can be harmful to your four-legged family members. But, things like insecticides and rodenticides are just scratching the surface. Keep an eye out for these everyday household items that may pose a threat to your pet’s well-being!

Human Food

Most of us like to show our pets how much we love them by slipping them some yummy table scraps. And, it’s not just chocolate, grapes and raisins that should stay out of your pet’s bowl. Foods like avocados, macadamia nuts, onions, garlic, and foods containing xylitol such as gum and certain peanut butters are no good. You’ll also want to be sure your pet steers clear of coffee grounds, yeast and alcohol.

Cooked meats can pose a serious threat to your pet’s health, too. Bones can become brittle when cooked, increasing the chance of breaking or splintering which is a big issue when ingested by your animal companion.

Human Medications

We know to keep our medications out of the reach of children, but human medicine can be enticing for curious noses and paws, too! From prescription to over-the-counter, human medications are not safe for our four-legged friends. Even inhalers can pose a danger, so be sure to keep your medications out of reach of your kids (two- and four-legged alike).

House Plants

Many people know that poinsettias and lilies are toxic to cats, but plant varieties such as azalea, rhododendron and sago palm are some of the less commonly known hazards! Additionally, kalanchoe flowers and schefflera leaves are often found in homes and can be harmful to pets.

Household Cleaners

You may be aware that chemicals like bleach and detergents can pose a threat to your pet. If ingested (or even inhaled), other common substances such as disinfectants or antifreeze can also be harmful to your pet. Don’t forget about garden fertilizers or paint chips containing heavy metals, too!

Essential Oils

While essential oils might be helpful for treating human ailments, many of these substances are volatile compounds, which mean they can be toxic to your animal companion. Cats can be especially sensitive to the scents in essential oils. Keep in mind that what is safe for you to use isn’t necessarily safe to use with your pet nearby.

For Rabbits

In addition to the dangers listed above, Rabbits can face special risks when it comes to toxic substances. There can be traces of cyanide in almonds, cassava roots, mangoes and millet sprouts, so those are not safe foods to feed to your bunny! A substance called “psoralen,” found in Parsnips, is also poisonous! Growing your own veggies in a garden might be great for people, but not all veggies are safe for rabbits. Stay away from eggplants, potato plants, sweet potato plants, tomato plants and the root of mustard plants.

Odds and Ends

Poisons aren’t the only thing that can pose a threat to your four-legged family members! Keep an eye out for other dangers like loose strings (especially attached to blinds or dental floss!), rubber bands, treated toilet water and plastic bags. In the winter time, ice melt can get into paw pads and injure the skin. Coins and other small objects such as lip balm, batteries, socks and hair ties can look or smell appetizing to your pet, but could cause serious internal damage if ingested.

While accidents happen, the best way to keep your pet happy and healthy is to know what to look for and keep a close watch over potential hazards in the home. If your pet does consume something they shouldn’t or even if you suspect they may have gotten into something unsafe, take them to the nearest emergency veterinarian right away!

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Jasmine and Iris: Animal Friends' Home to Home Adoption Program

Jasmine and Iris were rescued about 4 years ago when they were just kittens. As part of a litter of young kittens, they had nowhere else to go, so a Good Samaritan who fell in love with them stepped in and gave a home to these two adorable kitties.

Now 4 years old, Jasmine and Iris are in search of a new home because a new member of their family is severely allergic to cats. In their current home, they spend their days playing with each other and even get along great with a canine sibling! These wonderful, friendly and lovable kitties need a home where they will get all of the playtime, love and attention they’ve grown accustomed to.

If you think your family might be the right fit for these sweet girls, contact Debbie at debbie.waldo@icloud.com.

Monday, 5 March 2018

Wellness Wednesdays

The hallmark of our Howard Ash Animal Wellness Center is to provide affordable wellness services to financially struggling pet owners. At Animal Friends, we know that just because a family may have fallen on difficult economic times, doesn’t mean their pets don’t deserve high quality veterinary care. By giving our community access to low-cost, high-quality services, we can keep pets healthy and at home with caring families – where they belong.

Scheduling a yearly wellness visit is the best way to keep your pet healthy. Not only will it provide your pet with preventative care they may need – such as a heartworm test, general blood work and vaccinations – it is the perfect time to identify any number of potentially life threatening conditions and begin treatment. As your pet ages, their need for routine care may increase. We recommend that pets older than 7 years have a preventative care appointment twice each year.

To help low-income families keep their four-legged members feeling their best, Animal Friends is proud to introduce Wellness Wednesdays at our Howard Ash Animal Wellness Center.

Now, you can schedule a wellness visit that includes a physical exam by a licensed veterinarian. From there you can opt to get your pet routine vaccinations, flea and tick treatments and tests to detect conditions such as heartworm, Lyme disease, feline leukemia and FIV. You can also make appointments for routine illnesses, like ear and eye infections or sneezing and coughing. And, you’ll be provided with any necessary medication during your visit so you won’t need to make an extra trip to the pharmacy!

By offering low-cost wellness services with compassionate staff in a judgment-free zone, we know that we’ll be helping our clients and their pets – and we look forward to doing so.

Wellness visits are by appointment only. To schedule your visit, contact our Clinic Services team at 412.847.7004 or click here to learn more.