Dr. Jack L. Stephens, president of Pets Best Insurance, founded pet insurance in the U.S. in 1981 with a mission to end euthanasia when pet owners couldn’t afford veterinary treatment. Dr. Stephens went on to present the first U.S. pet insurance policy to famous television dog, Lassie.
Dr. Jane Matheys is a veterinarian and guest blogger for pet health insurance provider, Pets Best Insurance.
Hello. I’m Dr. Jane Matheys from The Cat Doctor Veterinary Hospital and Hotel in Boise, Idaho. Today I’ll be answering some questions about general cat health from questions that were posted on Pets Best Insurance Facebook page.
The first one is from Chryssa. She says: “My cats are conditioned to come running for milk when they hear me eating cereal. I recently switched to almond milk, and I’m wondering if I can still let them lick the bowl when I’m done.”
First of all, let me just talk about milk products in general for kitty cats. To digest any of the dairy products, kitties need lactase enzyme, and they don’t make as much of this enzyme as people do. It can upset the kitty’s tummy and especially give them some diarrhea.
By Dr. Fiona, a veterinarian and guest blogger for pet health insurance provider, Pets Best Insurance.
The weather is warming up and everyone is headed out to enjoy the sunshine and fresh air! However, before you take your dog outside, be aware that the heat can be dangerous, even deadly, for dogs. Heat is especially dangerous if your dog is a short or flat nose dog breed.
1. What Are The Symptoms of Heat Stroke in Dogs?
Panting is a normal physiologic response to heat, but if after taking a break your pet continues to pant heavily, it is possible he or she could be getting heat stroke, which can be a medical emergency. Take your pet to a shady cool area and provide access to water.
Signs of heat stroke include heavy panting or difficulty breathing, bright red gums, wobbliness, vomiting, diarrhea and collapse. Seek immediate veterinary medical help if this occurs.
2. What Should I Do If I Suspect Dog Heat Stroke?
Heat stroke is a medical emergency and requires immediate veterinary attention. NEVER douse your pet in cold water if you think heat stroke is a possibility, instead move to a cool air-conditioned area and get to a veterinary clinic immediately.
3. Are Some Dog Breeds More Susceptible to Heat Stroke?
Veterinarian Dr. Fiona discusses dog health for the highly rated dog insurance provider, Pets Best.
Playing outside during the beautiful summer weather is great, however it exposes your dog to pesky bug bites and stings. Here are three common warm weather pests that may bite or sting your dog, and how to fight back.
Ticks can be gross, but it is important that they be removed from your dog to help prevent the spread of disease. If the tick is attached, use a pair of tweezers to grasp the tick’s body as close to the head and the dog’s skin as possible. Gently twist and pull the tick off. It is important to not jerk or pull too quickly, as this can cause the tick’s body to separate, potentially leaving the head behind. Clean the area and apply triple antibiotic ointment.
2. Insect Bites
Using a canine safe bug spray to help prevent insect bites is best, but if your pet does get bitten by an insect there are some things you can do at home. If your dog will let you ice the area, you can use a cold compress to help ease swelling and inflammation. Hydrocortisone ointment can be helpful to ease the itching (just don’t let your dog lick if off!).
3. Bee Stings
By Matt Hands, a volunteer dog shelter photographer and guest blogger for dog insurance provider, Pets Best Insurance.
After taking hundreds of photos of my mother-in-law’s grandchildren and our family dog, Fiddler, she invited me to start volunteering at the Meridian, Idaho dog-only SPCA shelter with her. The shelter photographer was overwhelmed and needed help, and I was happy to oblige.
My first few sessions were challenging. Longing to run free and play, the last thing on a shelter pet’s mind is sitting still for a picture. The dogs were typically afraid, agitated and unruly. After weeks of blurry and overexposed photos, I developed some tips and tricks for photographing dogs.
To be sure, I am no dog whisperer. My success in capturing emotionally provocative photos for the shelter comes more from gimmicks than canine psychology. Simply put, different breeds have different personalities. Here are some simple tips and tricks for capturing a special portrait of your dog in an outdoor setting with a point-and-shoot camera.
1. Get the Lighting Right
In a recent article on vetstreet.com, veterinarian Dr. Patty Khuly explains why even though she’s a veterinarian, she still needs pet insurance for her own pets. Especially for her French bulldog, Vincent, who has had a host of health issues.
Dr. Khuly says, “The reality…is that life is unpredictable and there’s always the possibility that your pet will suffer illness or sustain trauma. And since there’s no telling which it’ll be — a trouble-free life or one like Vincent’s — adopting pet insurance is how veterinarians increasingly recommend pet owners act responsibly to hedge against the very real prospect of financial euthanasia.
But pet insurance isn’t just for pet owners. Indeed, if Vincent’s story has taught me anything, it’s that even veterinarians need pet insurance. Really. Here’s why:
1. Because vet care is not free for veterinarians. Contrary to popular opinion, veterinary care does not suddenly become free when you become a veterinarian. Though my own personal store of knowledge is always on tap (though, technically, I still make student loan payments on it), I also require drugs, supplies, equipment and infrastructure — not to mention the staff to make it all happen.
Not free at all, is it? Consider it merely discounted compared to what it would cost you.
2. Because medical care is increasingly pricey.