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6 Easter Foods to Avoid Sharing with Pets

Posted on: April 16th, 2014 by

An English bulldog wearing bunny ears stares at an Easter basket of candy.Easter is coming up, and much of the day is spent around food, including baskets full of goodies. You may be wondering if you should share your Easter dinner with your pet. While some traditional Easter foods are non-toxic to dogs and cats, they can still cause an upset stomach and lead to diarrhea and vomiting. Here’s a list of commonly consumed foods at Easter and whether or not to share them with your pet.

1. Ham

Easter ham is perhaps the most traditional part of Easter dinner. Ham is high in calories and fat which can cause diarrhea in dogs and cats and also lead to life-threatening pancreatitis in dogs. High calorie foods also cause weight gain in pets. Just 3 ounces of ham is over 25% of the daily calories needed in a 25 pound dog.

2. Mashed Potatoes

Although potatoes are typically harmless in dogs, make sure that your mashed potatoes are not made with any onions or garlic which are toxic to dogs. The butter and milk that are added to mashed potatoes can cause diarrhea in your pets because dogs are often lactose intolerant and cats can be as well.

3. Green Beans

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Breed Guide: Great Dane

Posted on: April 14th, 2014 by

Great DaneDr. Fiona is a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best, a dog insurance and cat insurance agency

About the Great Dane

Height (to base of neck): female 28-32″, male 30-34″

Weight: female: 100-130 lbs, male: 120-200 lbs

Color: There are six accepted coat colors: fawn, brindle, blue, black, harlequin and mantle.

Origin: Germany

Coat: Short

Life Expectancy: 6-8 years

Energy level: Moderate

Exercise needs: Low to moderate

Is a Great Dane the Right Dog Breed for You?

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5 Rules Cats Live By

Posted on: April 11th, 2014 by

cat sitting on a bookBy Arden Moore, a certified cat and dog behaviorist with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. Arden is an author, radio host, and writer for Pets Best, a cat insurance and dog insurance agency.

Whether you just adopted a frisky kitten or a calm adult cat, you can improve the communication with your feline by recognizing how cats think. As important as it is to give consistent verbal and non-verbal cues to your feline, it is vital to also embrace their view of sharing a home with you.

Here are five important feline characteristics to recognize:

1. Cats prefer set routines. They like to wake up at a certain time, eat at a certain time, and expect you home at a certain time. They quickly learn your daily schedule and adapt accordingly. That may partially explain why some cats wake their people up a few minutes before their alarm clocks chime.

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6 Tips to Stop Severe Bleeding in Dogs

Posted on: April 9th, 2014 by

An American bulldog gets a wound wrapped on his leg.

By Arden Moore, a certified pet first aid/CPR instructor with Pet Tech, a hands-on training program. Arden is an author, radio host, and writer for Pets Best, a pet insurance agency for dogs and cats.

Dogs can suffer severe injuries where they start profusely bleeding for a variety of reasons. For instance, your dog may get bitten by another animal, step on broken glass, or get their nail caught and ripped. So you need to know how to act quickly to stop the flowing blood.

April is National Pet First Aid Awareness Month – a good reminder to enroll in a veterinarian-approved pet first aid class. In a pet emergency, minutes count. Knowing what to do – and what not to do – can make the big difference in saving your dog’s life. The purpose of pet first aid is to stabilize and immobilize a pet safely until he can receive proper treatment by a veterinarian.

First, note that there are three types of bleeding:

  • Capillary, characterized by superficial blood oozing, such as from a nick in the tip of the ear or clipping a toenail to close to the quick.
  • Venous, characterized by a slower flow of dark-red blood. This is the oxygen depleted blood going back to the heart.
  • Arterial, characterized by spurting, bright red blood. This is the most serious type of bleeding as a dog who loses more than 30 percent of blood volume in a matter of minutes can develop serious shock.

To keep yourself safe and to administer to your dog who has a serious bleeding wound, follow these six steps:

1. Muzzle your dog to prevent being bitten; dogs who are frightened or in pain will often act out of instinct- even the nicest dog may bite when scared. Keep a muzzle in your pet first-aid kit and one in your car. You can use nylon leashes or large triangle bandage to wrap around your dog’s muzzle to still allow him to breathe but not to bite.

2. Apply direct pressure on the wound by using sterile gauze pads. If gauze pads are not available, use a clean t-shirt or towel.

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Breed Guide: Siberian Husky

Posted on: April 7th, 2014 by

Siberian HuskyDr. Fiona is a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best, a dog insurance and cat insurance agency

About the Siberian Husky

Height (to base of neck): female 20-23″, male 21-25″

Weight: female: 35-50 lbs, male 45-60 lbs

Color: Varied, usually with white paws and legs, facial markings, and tail tip. Commonly black and white, less commonly copper-red and white, grey and white, and pure white.

Origin: Siberia, Russia

Coat: Thick two layered coat with a dense undercoat and a longer topcoat of short, straight guard hairs.

Life Expectancy: 12-14 years

Energy level: High

Exercise needs: high

Is a Siberian Husky the Right Dog Breed for You?

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