Sunday, November 23, 2008

Amputation

If your pup is facing an amputation, or you just need help and advice from those experienced in amputation and what it means for your dog, the BEST resource around is the Tripawds site.

A lot of people consider amputation to be worse than death for their active pup, but trust me, dogs are better able to adapt a LOT better than humans when it comes to amputation because they have three other legs to support them.

The majority of dogs who have an amputation adapt amazingly well to life on three legs and can do what they use to do with four.

For some inspiring stories of dogs that don't know they lost a leg, or two, visit the sites below:

Tripawds (support, advice, and inspirational stories)

Faith the two-legged dog

Dominic the two legged greyhound video below

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Hydrocephalus in Pets

There's a wonderful new Website created by Baby Love's mom that gives wonderful and educational information on Hydrocephalus in pets.

If you need to know about this condition, I highly recommend this site, from someone who lived and loved a very special dog with the condition.

Hydrocephalus in Pets

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Help Organizations

Sometimes your pet becomes ill or injured and the cost of treatment is expensive. Below is a list of organizations that MAY be able to help you afford or provide low cost treatment for your gimpy. Remember, it doesn't hurt to ask, all they will say is "no", so try as many as possible.

Also, some breed specific clubs offer a vet assistance fund. Please check with your local breed specific chapter to see if one exists in your area.

The good people at Tripawds also has a list of help organizations, so I highly recommend you visit their list as well.  To see their list, click here

If you are a 501(c)3 Rescue and need help raising funds for gimpy dogs, please contact Gimpy Dogs to arrange to have your dog posted for fund raising. All links will go to your non-profit site, and all money will be donated straight to your organization.

Pet Food Stamps 

Brown Dog Foundation

Senior Dogs Project

Orthodogs Silver Lining

Lab Med (for rescued labs)

Handicapped Pets Help Fund

Corgi Aid

UK Assistance with Vet Funds

The Pet Fund

Care Credit

Angels4Animals

AAHA

United Animal Nation

The Travis Fund

Labrador Lifeline

IMOM Organization

Help a Pet organization

The Magic Bullet Fund (Helping dogs with cancer)

Actors and Other Animals (Serving the Greater Los Angeles, CA areas)

Pets in Need (Redwood City, CA area)

Nike Animal Rescue Foundation (NARF) San Francisco Bay area cities

Ashley's Angel Fund (North Carolina)

Bearen Foundation (Eugene, OR)

Volunteer Services for Animals (Rhode Island)

Good Samaritan Fund (Washington State University)

The ACME Foundation (Cobb, CA)

Pet Samaritan Fund (Utah)

University of Georgia College of Veterinarian Medicine (pdf brochures of various help funds)

Save Our Siberians - assist Siberian Husky rescue groups and individuals with non-routine expenses incurred for rescue dogs.

Help your dog fight cancer financial resource link


Angels for Animals

Brown Dog Foundation

Canine Cancer Awareness

Diabetic Pets Fund

Extend Credit

God's Creatures Ministry

NY SAVE (New York)

Pigger's Pals

Shakespeare Animal Fund

The Mosby Foundation

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Bloat

If you even suspect that your dog may suffer from bloat, time is of the essence, THIS IS A MEDICAL EMERGENCY THAT REQUIRES IMMEDIATE VET ATTENTION!

If you own a breed that is susceptible to bloat (Great Dane, St. Bernard, Weimaraner, for example), then learn the signs of bloat now, and learn what you can do to help prevent it.

Studies can't say for sure what really causes bloat, they have just been able to identify breeds and types of dogs that are more susceptible to it, ways to lessen the chances of getting it, and have dispelled some of the rumor and myth about it.

The following links are all encompassing in what bloat is, how to lessen the chances, dispelling myths (you may have read that raised bowls decrease the risk of bloat, but that is not true: raised bowls actually INCREASE the risk of bloat), and educate in how important it is to act fast if you suspect that your dog has bloat.

Learn about bloat now... it may help you save the life of your dog if it strikes:

Marvistavet resource

Video of a dog suffering from bloat (the dog is fine now)

Extract of the Bloat (GDV) Study

Wikipedia

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Thyroid Issues

From poor coats, aggressiveness, seizures, to heart issues, the thyroid can be the cause of a lot of symptoms. If your dog has been diagnosed with a thyroid condition, see the resources below to help you treat and live with thyroid issues in your gimpy.

Canis Major resource

Thyroid Info resource

Thyroid information from Dr. Dodds

Hypothyroidsim

OFA Thyroid resource

MARVISTAVET Resource

Arthritis

Below are some great articles about arthritis in dogs, and also resources to help manage the pain and support groups.

Canis Major Resource on arthritis

ASPCA Resource

Arthritis Foundation

Support Group

Alternative k9 nutrition group

Friday, August 15, 2008

Reverse Sneezing

My dog was making this horrible noise and I was sure she/he was choking or dying!
I think my dog is having a seizure because he/she was making this horrible noise and couldn't seem to breathe right!

If there is one sure fire freak out time, its when your dog is making horrible noises and can't seem to breathe. Maybe they are even pawing at their nose or mouth. I get people asking me all the time what a reverse sneeze is and what it sounds like. Frankly, its virtually impossible to describe it by writing about it, unless you describe it as sounding like someone trying to hack up a big loogie, but there are variations of the reverse sneeze that words simply can't describe.

To answer your next question: should I rub their nose, hold their nose shut, stick my hand down their throat, rub their neck, rub their throat, etc. to make it go away? Eh, I don't know if any of that actually helps, but hey, whatever makes you feel better (except the sticking your hand down their throat thing).

Thankfully, dog owners have captured their dogs in mid reverse sneeze, so I bring you... the concert of reverse sneezing. You may want to pass on the popcorn for this one:

A pug reverse sneezing

Boston Terrier reverse sneezing

A golden reverse sneezing

Not to be confused with a dog with kennel cough

Lupus

Lupus is an autoimmune disorder that can show itself from a simple skin rash to a possible fatal systemic disease. Just because your dog has a rash doesn’t mean that it has lupus! If your dog has a rash, please consult your vet for testing. Rashes can also be more benign things such as food allergies, ringworm, or mites. For more information on lupus, please consult the links below.

Discoid Lupus picture

Discoid Lupus explanation

Lupus Erythematosus

Very good article on the different types of lupus

Zinc-Responsive Dermatosis (ZRD)

Does your dog have crusty lesions around its mucus membranes (eyes, muzzle, foot pads, private area? Is your dog an: Alaskan malamute, American Eskimo dog, Samoyed, and Siberian husky, Doberman Pinscher, or Great Dane?

Its possible that your dog is suffering from Zinc-Responsive Dermatosis.

If you suspect that your dog has ZRD, please consult your vet for the proper treatment.

To find out more information, please visit these links:

Basic information on the disease

DVM360 article with pictures

Siberian Husky Health Foundation article

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Inducing vomiting in dogs

A lot of people ask, usually during a crisis, how to make their dogs throw up something they have eaten.

Before providing links to resources, I want everyone to be aware of some simple steps you need to take BEFORE you need to induce vomiting in your dog.

1.) Always keep your vet’s phone number handy. NEVER induce vomiting unless a vet tells you to do so.

2.) If your vet is closed, make sure you keep the number to your closest emergency vet handy. You should also know how close the emergency vet is, how long it will take to drive there, and that you know how to get there.

3.) Keep the Pet Poison Control number handy: (888) 426-4435 (Please note that you will most likely be charged a $60 consultation fee on a credit card if you call this number).

If you pet has ingested something that requires you to induce vomiting, your pet will most likely require immediate follow up care. Just because your pet threw up the substance or object, some of that substance may have entered the blood stream and you will need to ensure that proper follow up care is sought immediately.

You should never try to induce vomiting if your dog is unconscious, having difficulty breathing, choking, can’t stand, has ingested a caustic (like draino, bleach, etc.), or has ingested something more than 2 hours ago.

If you dog has ingested a large toy or soft toy, you should not induce vomiting as this may cause a blockage coming back up and your dog could suffocate. Get your dog to a vet so they can induce vomiting (if appropriate) where they have the tools to handle a blockage.

If you dog has ingested something sharp, do NOT induce vomiting. The force of the dog vomiting will cause that sharp object to pierce the esophagus on the way back up and will cause even more damage, if not death.

4.) Always have hydrogen peroxide on hand. The basic 3% solution found at most drug stores will work. Please note that hydrogen peroxide loses its effectiveness over time or when exposed to bright sunlight, so remember to throw out old bottles and buy new bottles periodically.

5.) Ask your vet for a syringe or purchase a liquid medicine dropper or syringe-like instrument for administering the peroxide. They just won’t voluntarily drink it, you’ll need to squirt it in their mouth (click here to see how to administer liquids with a syringe)

When you call your vet, you will need to tell them the following:

1.) size of your dog
2.) what they ingested
3.) how long ago it was ingested
4.) How much of it was ingested (if medicine, what is the dosage, how many pills, etc.)

Remember, have the proper tools on hand to induce vomiting
ONLY induce on the approval of your vet
Take your dog in immediately for follow up care

The following are links that describe how to induce vomiting. They should NOT be used instead of the direction of your vet, but are only to familiarize you with how to induce vomiting should your vet tell you to do so.

Suite 101 article (excellent article)

Dog First Aid 101 link

Pet Place link

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Pacemakers

Charlie was a busy executive. In charge of a very popular social networking site, he and his partner Opy worked tirelessly to market their site and bring together those with like interests.

As with all successful ventures, sometimes Charlie didn't take very good of himself, didn't get enough sleep or watch his diet. One day Charlie developed a nagging cough. A trip to the doctor, who diagnosed a slight chest infection and prescribed antibiotics didn't seem to take care of the cough. Then one night, Charlie had a seizure. He was rushed to the emergency clinic and was finally diagnosed with congestive heart failure.

Unfortunately for Charlie, he's a dog. While technology has advanced in human pacemaker technologies, and usually covered under health insurance, pacemakers for dogs isn't covered by most pet insurance companies, so its very cost prohibitive for owners, and most dogs aren't good candidates. If you've ever faced the vet who has told you that there is nothing to do but wait for the end, there is another alternative if it is available in your area, the pacemaker.

Luckily for Charlie, his owners were able to offer him this new leash on life.

To find out more about pacemakers and to read Charlie's story, please visit the informative site that Charlie's owners have created to educate others on this technology, and hopefully if faced with a grim diagnosis, there can be another alternative other than just waiting.

If you'd like to learn more about Dogs with Blogs, the social networking site that allows dogs to post their true feelings (even the gimpy ones) please visit their site.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Laryngeal Issues

Dogs can sometimes choke on food or water, cough after eating or drinking, or have breathing issues. Sometimes these "symptoms" are just a dog eating or drinking too fast, or like most humans, swallow "wrong". Sometimes these symptoms could be due to something more serious.

If your dog has been diagnosed with the laryngeal paralysis or trachea collapse, here are some resources to find out more about these issues:

Laryngeal Paralysis

Trachea Collapse

One Newfie's experience (questions and answers from an owner to their Neurologist)

Megaesophagus

Marvistavet link to Megaesophagus

A cool video of how one dog has learned how to eat with Megaesophagus


If you want to join a support group to find out more:

Yorkie Angel Patrol Collapsing Trachea Support Forum

Collapsing Trachea support group

Laryngeal Paralysis support group

Tracheotomy group


Megaesophagus Support Group