Wanted to share some fun to start off your Saturday morning. May you find something to do this weekend that makes you as happy as this Pug in his ball pit. Enjoy!
Dr. Franklin and Dr. Earp accepting the ice bucket challenge!
Many common household items can pose a threat to our animal companions—even some items specifically meant for pets could cause health problems.
To protect your pet, simply use common sense and take the same precautions you would with a child.
Although rodent poisons and insecticides are the most common sources of companion animal poisoning, the following list of less common, but potentially toxic, agents should be avoided if at all possible.
Dangers just outside your door
- Antifreeze that contains ethylene glycol has a sweet taste that attracts animals but is deadly if consumed in even small quantities; one teaspoon can kill a seven-pound cat. The HSUS recommends pet owners use a safe antifreeze in their vehicles. Look for antifreeze that contains propylene glycol, which is safe for animals if ingested in small amounts. Ethylene glycol can also be found in common household products like snow globes, so be sure to keep these things out the reach of animals. Read more about antifreeze hazards »
- Cocoa mulch contains ingredients that can be deadly to pets if ingested. The mulch, sold in garden supply stores, has a chocolate scent that is appetizing to some animals.
- Chemicals used on lawns and gardens, such as fertilizer and plant food, can be easily accessible and fatal to a pet allowed in the yard unsupervised.
- De-icing salts used to melt snow and ice are paw irritants that can be poisonous if licked off. Paws should be washed and dried as soon as the animal comes in from the snow. Other options include doggie boots with Velcro straps to protect Fido’s feet, and making cats indoor pets.
- Cans and garbage can pose a danger when cats or smaller dogs attempt to lick food from a disposed can, sometimes getting their head caught inside the can. To be sure this doesn’t happen, squeeze the open end of the can closed before disposing.
- Traps and poisons Pest control companies frequently use glue traps, live traps and poisons to kill rodents. Even if you would never use such methods to eliminate rodents, your neighbor might. Dogs and cats can be poisoned if they eat a rodent who has been killed by poison (called secondary poisoning).
Threats inside the house
- Cedar and other soft wood shavings, including pine, emit fumes that may be dangerous to small mammals like hamsters and gerbils.
- Insect control products, such as the insecticides used in many over-the-counter flea and tick remedies, may be toxic to companion animals. Prescription flea and tick control products are much safer and more effective. Pet owners should never use any product without first consulting a veterinarian. Read more about potential poisoning from flea and tick products »
- Human medications, such as pain killers (including aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen), cold medicines, anti-cancer drugs, anti-depressants, vitamins, and diet pills can all be toxic to animals. Keep medicine containers and tubes of ointments and creams away from pets who could chew through them, and be vigilant about finding and disposing of any dropped pills.
- Poisonous household plants, including azalea, dieffenbachia (dumb cane), lilies, mistletoe, and philodendron. See our full list of poisonous plants »
- String, yarn, rubber bands, and even dental floss are easy to swallow and can cause intestinal blockages or strangulation.
- Toys with movable parts—like squeaky toys or stuffed animals with plastic eyes—can pose a choking hazard to animals. Take the same precautions with pets as you would with a small child.
- Rawhide dog chews may be contaminated with Salmonella, which can infect pets and humans who come in contact with the chews. This kind of treat should be offered to a pet only with supervision, as they can pose a choking hazard as well.
- Holiday decorations and lights pose a risk to cats and dogs. Keep these items out of the reach of animals, and, if possible, confine your pet to an undecorated area while you are out of the home. Read more about holiday choking hazards in this FDA PDF »
- Chocolate is poisonous to dogs, cats, and ferrets. Read more about why chocolate is dangerous to dogs in this FDA PDF »
- Fumes from nonstick cooking surfaces and self-cleaning ovens can be deadly to birds. Always be cautious when using any pump or aerosol spray around birds.
- Leftovers, such as chicken bones, might shatter and choke a cat or dog. human foods to keep away from pets include onions and onion powder; alcoholic beverages; yeast dough; coffee grounds and beans; salt; macadamia nuts; tomato, potato, and rhubarb leaves and stems; avocados (toxic to birds, mice, rabbits, horses, cattle, and dairy goats); grapes; and anything with mold growing on it. See our full list of people foods that might harm pets »
Tools for keeping your pet safe
The HSUS recommends that pet owners use all household products with caution. We also recommend that you put together a pet first aid kit (for dogs and cats) and have a manual readily available.
If all of your precautions fail, and you believe that your pet has been poisoned, contact your veterinarian or emergency veterinary service immediately. Signs of poisoning include listlessness, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle tremors, lack of coordination, and fever.
You can also call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center hotline 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 888-426-4435 for a fee of $65 per case. If you call the hotline, be prepared to provide the name of the poison your animal was exposed to; the amount and how long ago; the species, breed, age, sex, and weight of your pet; and the symptoms your pet is displaying. You’ll also be asked to provide your name, address, phone number, and credit card information.
Getting ready to add a new dog to your household? We found some good tips from The Humane Society on how to make this new addition a successful one!
The key to helping your new dog make a successful adjustment to your home is being prepared and being patient. It can take anywhere from two days to two months for you and your pet to adjust to each other. The following tips can help ensure a smooth transition.
First, gather your dog’s supplies
Prepare the things your dog will need in advance. You’ll need a collar and leash, food and water bowls, food, and, of course, some toys. And don’t forget to order an identification tag right away.
Establish house rules in advance
Work out your dog-care regimen in advance among the human members of your household. Who will walk the dog first thing in the morning? Who will feed him at night? Will Fido be allowed on the couch, or won’t he? Where will he rest at night? Are there any rooms in the house that are off-limits?
Plan your dog’s arrival
Try to arrange the arrival of your new dog for a weekend or when you can be home for a few days. Get to know each other and spend some quality time together. Don’t forget the jealousy factor—make sure you don’t neglect other pets and people in your household!
Be prepared for housetraining
Assume your new dog is not housetrained, and work from there. Read over the housetraining information given to you at the time of adoption and check out our housetraining tips for puppies or adult dogs. Be consistent, and maintain a routine. A little extra effort on your part to come home straight from work each day will pay off in easier, faster housetraining.
Make sure all your pets are healthy
Animal shelters take in animals with widely varying backgrounds, some of whom have not been previously vaccinated. Inevitably, despite the best efforts of shelter workers, viruses can be spread and may occasionally go home with adopted animals. If you already have dogs or cats at home, make sure they are up-to-date on their shots and in good general health before introducing your new pet dog.
Take your new dog to the veterinarian within a week after adoption. There, he will receive a health check and any needed vaccinations. If your dog has not been spayed or neutered, make that appointment! There are already far too many homeless puppies and dogs; don’t let your new pet add to the problem. Most likely, the shelter will require that you have your pet spayed or neutered anyway. If you need more information about why it is so important to spay or neuter your dog, read our online information on spaying and neutering.
Give your dog a crate
A crate may look to you like the canine equivalent of a jail cell, but to your dog, who instinctively likes to den, it’s a room of his own. It makes housetraining and obedience-training easier and saves your dog from the headache of being yelled at unnecessarily for problem behavior. Of course, you won’t want to crate your dog all day or all night, or he will consider it a jail cell. Just a few, regular hours a day should be sufficient.
The crate should not contain wire where his collar or paws can get caught, and should be roomy enough to allow your dog to stand up, turn around, and sit comfortably in normal posture. More on crate training »
If a crate isn’t an option, consider some sort of confinement to a dog-proofed part of your home. A portion of the kitchen or family room can serve the purpose very well. (A baby gate works perfectly.)
Use training and discipline to create a happy home
Dogs need order. Let your pet know from the start who is the boss. When you catch him doing something he shouldn’t, don’t lose your cool. Stay calm, and let him know immediately, in a loud and disapproving voice, that he has misbehaved. Reward him with praise when he does well, too! Sign up for a local dog obedience class, and you’ll learn what a joy it is to have a well-trained dog. Also be sure to read our tip sheet on training your dog with positive reinforcement.
Let the games begin
Dogs need an active life. That means you should plan plenty of exercise and game time for your pet. Enjoy jogging or Frisbee? You can bet your dog will, too. If running around the park is too energetic for your taste, try throwing a ball or a stick, or just going for a long walk together. When you take a drive in the country or visit family and friends, bring your dog and a leash along.
Be patient and enjoy the results
Finally, be reasonable in your expectations. Life with you is a different experience for your new companion, so give him time to adjust. You’ll soon find out that you’ve made a friend for life. No one will ever greet you with as much enthusiasm or provide you with as much unqualified love and loyalty as your dog will. Be patient, and you will be amply rewarded.
As you enjoy the next couple of days of beautiful spring weather working in your yard, we have few tips for from The Humane Society on helping out the wild animals in the neighborhood.
Spring Forward — for Wildlife
As the air and soil warm, animals also get more active, bringing life with a new season. At our wildlife care centers, that means babies, and lots of them. In March, April and May last year, our three affiliated wildlife care centers (in California, Florida, and Massachusetts) took in more than 1,600 animals – from barn owls to turtles to foxes. To help animals at this time of year, there are some ways you can help, or some rules to pass on to neighbors and friends.
Ten Ways to Spring for Wildlife this Spring
- Create a Humane Backyard. Perhaps the best way to help wildlife this spring is to create your own sanctuary for them in your own backyard, patio, or balcony.
- Postpone your spring tree cutting. Squirrels and raccoons den in tree hollows with babies, and trees become nest sites for woodpeckers and all manner of songbirds. Your trees may be occupied, so before cutting, survey as best you can for active dens or nests. Learn more about humane spring cleaning here.
- Scrap the trap. Spring and summer is when wild animals search out secluded dens and nest sites for raising young – and some of those sites may be in your attic, chimney, or under your deck. Whether you are having issues with prairie dogs, skunks, or pigeons, there are resources available to help you and them.
- Re-nest baby birds. It’s a myth that if you touch a baby bird, the parents will abandon their baby. There are signs to look for to see if they need help here.
- Don’t kidnap fawns. People don’t realize that it’s entirely normal for deer to “park” their fawns in yards or other “hiding” spots. The doe will only visit and nurse her fawn a few times a day to avoid attracting predators to her scent. Unless you know that the mother is dead, or if the fawn has been crying and wandering around all day, leave him or her alone.
- Leave baby rabbits. If the nest is intact and the babies are not injured, leave them be. Mother rabbits only visit their young 2-3 times a day. If you’re concerned, you can put an “X” of sticks or yarn over the nest to assess if the mother is returning to nurse them. If the X stays perfectly in place for 12+ hours, they may be orphaned and need to go to a wildlife rehabilitator.
- Put up your woodchuck fence. Set up protection for your vegetable garden now – see our tips for preventing conflicts with woodchucks here.
- Contain your trash. Many wild animal “problems” are actually created by poor garbage disposal practices. Keep trash indoors until the morning of pick-up, use an outdoor storage container (available at home building stores), or use Animal Stopper garbage cans, which have built in bungee cords and are virtually raccoon proof.
- Don’t rush to judgment about rabies . It’s false that seeing raccoons, foxes, or coyotes active during daylight means they have rabies. Only if they are acting strangely — circling, dragging themselves, acting injured or unusually aggressive or tame, should you call an animal control officer for assistance.
- Support your local wildlife rehabilitator and follow our animal care centers. In addition to volunteering or providing financial support, you can help by donating towels and blankets and other items to wildlife care centers. You can get other tips and learn of rescues and release stories by liking Humane Wildlife Services and our affiliated animal sanctuaries and rehabilitation centers on Facebook: South Florida Wildlife Center, The Fund for Animals Wildlife Center, Cape Wildlife Center, Duchess Sanctuary,Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch and Doris Day Equine Center.
The HSUS is our nation’s largest animal care provider, and much of that work involves protecting wildlife. Wildlife need our help, especially during the spring.
Dr. Robert Franklin is the topic of an article featured in the Spring 2014 edition of Washington State magazine.
Those of us at Laurelwood Animal Hospital congratulate him! The article and link are below:
Robert Franklin ’75, ’76, ’79—A new leash on life
by Eric Apalategui | © Washington State University
Over more than three decades, veterinarian Dr. Robert Franklin has advocated for animal welfare—even when those animals never set a paw into his specialty practice in Beaverton, Oregon.
Franklin ’75 BS, ’76 BS, ’79 DVM is on the frontlines of animal wellbeing and companionship issues in the Pacific Northwest, whether he’s working behind the scenes to save a stray or squarely in the spotlight ensuring that famed orca Keiko was getting appropriate medical care.
“The animal welfare movement is waiting for veterinarians to lead it like we should,” says Franklin, who recently received Washington State University’s Distinguished Veterinary Alumnus Award. “We’ve got to look at what’s in the best interests of the animals we take care of.”
“I think he’s somewhat of a pioneer,” says David Frei, an admirer who is best known as the cohost of the Westminster Kennel Club’s annual dog show in New York City.
Frei says Franklin always seems to be out front with new ideas in the pet world, actively supporting endeavors such as hospice care for terminally ill animals and grief counseling for their human companions, setting up pet blood banks, and pairing at-risk children or prison inmates with shelter animals.
“He’s making it a better world for animals, and he’s making it a better world for people,” says Frei, who met Franklin when they both served on the board of what is now Pet Partners, a Bellevue-based nonprofit organization that promotes pet companionship, therapy, and service to improve people’s lives.
“The benefit of animals is far more a reality than I think the human medical community is willing to admit,” Franklin says.
When he served on the executive board of the Oregon Veterinary Medical Association (OVMA), including a term as president in 1998, he helped convince state legislators to make animal abuse a Class C felony. He also helped change the state law for dogs who kill livestock, giving them a chance to avoid a death sentence if they could be resettled out of temptation’s way. Franklin later pushed for a law that required veterinarians to report suspected cases of animal abuse.
“We do know that there is a direct relationship between people who abuse animals and their tendency to be violent” to people, says Franklin.
“He’s always challenging the profession to reconsider our points of view on animal welfare,” says Glenn Kolb, executive director of the OVMA. In 2013 the association awarded Franklin its highest honor, a Meritorious Service Award. “Bob was really at the forefront of getting the organization to move in the right direction,” says Kolb.
Franklin was leading the state veterinary board when Keiko was at the Oregon Coast Aquarium, following his star turn in the movieFree Willy, recovering from living in poor conditions at a Mexican amusement park.
A rift over his medical care developed between the Newport aquarium’s vet and a California-based vet for the Free Willy-Keiko Foundation, which was planning to release him back into the North Atlantic Ocean in 2002, where he was captured as a youngster in 1979.
Franklin and the OVMA demanded that an independent veterinarian give Keiko a checkup. Even though that exam showed Keiko’s health had improved significantly in Oregon, Franklin disagreed with the plan to release an animal that had spent its entire adult life as an aquarium entertainer.
“This whale was like a pet. He was sitting off the coast of Norway, playing with kids” after his release, says Franklin, who believed Keiko was doomed well before the orca died in 2003, in part because the animal didn’t belong to a pack like his wild kin. “There was no way he was going to survive.”
Franklin shows the same passion for his patients at Oregon Veterinary Specialty Hospital, where he is a partner and specializes in internal medicine.
“This is a guy (who) will turn things upside-down to get to a proper diagnosis,” says Trish Clark, a psychologist who started out as a pet-owner and now teams with Franklin to help homeless cats in the Portland area. “He’s just unbelievably dedicated.”
Born on Long Island, New York, and raised for a time in Bellevue, Washington, Franklin has always kept pets and longed to be a veterinarian from his earliest memory. At WSU, he fell under the influence of Professor Leo K. Bustad ’49 DVM, a groundbreaking researcher of the human-animal bond and cofounder of the organization that would become Pet Partners.
“We think Leo would be looking down and be quite proud of Bob Franklin,” says Frei.
It can be a crime to leave pets outside in extreme temperatures without food and shelter
Cold weather can be deadly for pets. As the temperature plummets in many parts of the country, The Humane Society of the United States sees a marked increase in the number of complaints about dogs and cats who have been left outside with no food or shelter.
We encourage you to contact local law enforcement agencies, because pets left outside in extreme temperatures, especially without food and shelter, are at risk of hypothermia, frostbite, and even death. Their owners are at risk of facing criminal charges.
The act of leaving a pet outside without food or adequate shelter often receives less attention than a violent attack against an animal, but neglect is a crime. “Especially in these cold months, it is important for people to bring their pets inside and for others to report neglected animals to law enforcement,” says Ashley Mauceri, The HSUS’s manager for cruelty response, who fields these calls.
Animal neglect is one of the most common forms of animal cruelty, and is investigated more by police and animal control agencies than any other form of animal abuse. Our most constant companions—dogs and cats—feel the effects of winter weather as much as we do, only they are often cast outside to weather the cold or a storm owing to a misconception that the fur on their backs will insulate them from suffering. Without proper shelter, food, and water, these domesticated animals’ chances of survival in frigid temperatures is greatly decreased. Any pet owners who aren’t sure what protections their pets need during cold weather, can read The HSUS’s cold-weather advice for keeping pets safe.
While views on animal welfare vary from region to region, there are laws in place in every state to prevent needless suffering. Callers to The HSUS report numerous cases across the country of animals left out in the cold, but the organization is also working with an increasing number of law enforcement agencies that recognize the importance of intervention in these cases.
- Animal neglect is considered a misdemeanor crime in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.
- Felony penalties can be levied in Mass. and Okla. for any animal neglect case.
- Felony charges can be applied in animal neglect resulting in death in Calif., Conn., Fla., and Washington, D.C.
- Report what you see: Take note of the date, time, exact location, and the type of animal(s) involved and write down as many details as possible about the situation. Video and photographic documentation of the animal, the location, the surrounding area, etc. (even a cell phone photo) will help bolster your case.
- Contact your local animal control agency or county sheriff’s office and present your complaint and evidence. Take detailed notes regarding who you speak with and when. Respectfully follow up in a few days if the situation has not been remedied.
- If you need advice, call The HSUS or email us. Because we aren’t a law-enforcement agency, we cannot take legal action, but we can provide expert counsel.
- If you have pets, follow our advice for keeping them safe in cold weather.
The holidays have arrived, and if you are one of the fortunate ones with friends and family that you like to spend time with, the holidays mean parties, dinners, gift exchanges and get-togethers. Whether you will be the host of one of these fetes, or whether you’ll be packing up the family and pet for a cross-town trip to visit family and/or friends, know before you go how you are going to keep everyone calm and comfortable, so that everyone has a good time.
Visiting … Visitors
If you are the “visitee,” you will want to do a little preparation before the guests arrive. Many of us consider our pets to be members of the family, and we enjoy having them with us in as we celebrate good times. But, when our pets are not used to have more than a few people around, they can get overly excited, and things can stop being fun. The jumping, the grabbing food from hands and tables, the barking … all of these things can lead to some embarrassing situations, and can even frighten some guests who are not accustomed to having animals around. In the weeks before the event, take some time to work on your pet’s manners and reinforce obedience training. You might try some small gatherings with some pet friendly people who can help you to reinforce your pet’s manners, so that when the bigger party night comes, your pet will already be prepared.
If, on the other hand, you know that your pet will not be able to hold back his exuberance, set aside a safe room where he can stay for the duration of the event. Make the space comfortable with a bed or rug, water, toys, and maybe some treats. Close this area off to the guests so that you can be sure that your pet, and your guests, are safe. Remember to either tell your guests that your pet should be left alone, tape a sign to the door saying “do not open,” or place a hook and eye lock on the door so that people know that it is not to be opened. The last thing you want is for a very excited pet to dash through the house, and possibly out the door to the outside of the house.
Traveling With Your Pet
Leaving the familiarity of home can provoke anxiety in people and animals. If you are traveling by car, be sure to bring along some of your pet’s favorite toys, a blanket or pillow bed, and his regular food. If your pet is used to sleeping in a crate, bring it along so he can sleep in his familiar space.
We advise keeping pets in a travel safe crate so that the animal is not able to move freely though the car. This covers a few bases. Keeping animals in travel crates prevents them from getting underfoot or on your lap while you are driving — an obvious hazard — it prevents them from being thrown from the car should an accident occur, and it prevents them from getting free/running away during rest stops or after minor accidents have occurred. We can tell you that these unhappy events do occur and are reported in the news frequently enough to make them worth noting. If you cannot fit a crate into your car, you can use a pet approved safety belt/harness to keep your pet in her seat, where she belongs.
On that note, make sure your pet is wearing identification at all times, and pack an emergency first aid kit for pets in case of an emergency. And don’t forget to take frequent breaks to allow for rest and relief.
If You Leave Your Pet Behind — Boarding
Before choosing a boarding facility for your pet, take a quick tour of the facility to check out the accommodations. You will want to be sure that it is clean and well kept, and that there is ample space given for the animals to exercise daily.
Have your questions ready before you go. Things you may want to know are: how many animals are kept together in one space; can you bring your pet’s food so that his digestive system will not be upset by an abrupt change in food; will you be able to bring along toys and other familiar comfort objects from home?
If you do not feel comfortable with a boarding facility, whether for your pet’s emotional comfort or because of health concerns, and you do not have the option of taking your pet along with you, give yourself plenty of time to ask around the neighborhood for someone to pet-sit in your home or theirs, or do some research into local pet-sitters that will come to your home to check in and care for your pet, or will take your pet into their home. The better prepared you are, the less stress there will be for you and your pet, and the better your holiday celebrations will be.
Keep to a Routine
One of the best things you can do throughout it all is to stay to a familiar schedule. This means taking walks at the same time that you always do, and feeding at the same time as usual. It might help to create an alarm system on your mobile phone to remind you of your pet’s daily routine. Also, don’t forget to take time to play and show affection, so that your pet does not feel thrown off balance by all of the activity and distractions.
Original article found at https://www.petmd.com/dog/seasonal/evr_multi_dealing_with_holiday_stress#.UrjWDvRDuSo
Follow our tips to keep pets safe and comfortable
From the Humane Society Website https://www.humanesociety.org/animals/resources/tips/protect_pets_winter.html
In many areas, winter is a season of bitter cold and numbing wetness. Extra precautions during winter months will make sure your four-footed family members stay safe and warm.
Help your pets remain happy and healthy during the colder months by following these simple guidelines:
Keep pets indoors and warm
Don’t leave dogs or cats outdoors when the temperature drops. Most dogs, and all cats, are safer indoors, except when taken out for exercise. No matter what the temperature, wind chill can threaten a pet’s life. Regardless of the season, shorthaired, very young, or old dogs and all cats should never be left outside without supervision. Short-coated dogs may feel more comfortable wearing a sweater during walks.
The best way to keep your pets safe (and happy) is to keep them with you
Take precautions if your dog spends a lot of time outside
A dog or cat is happiest and healthiest when kept indoors. If for some reason your dog is outdoors much of the day, he or she must be protected by a dry, draft-free shelter that is large enough to allow the dog to sit and lie down comfortably, but small enough to hold in his/her body heat. The floor should be raised a few inches off the ground and covered with cedar shavings or straw. The house should be turned to face away from the wind, and the doorway should be covered with waterproof burlap or heavy plastic.
Help neighborhood outdoor cats
If there are outdoor cats, either owned pets or community cats (ferals, who are scared of people, and strays, who are lost or abandoned pets) in your area, remember that they need protection from the elements as well as food and water. It’s easy to give them a hand.
Give your pets plenty of water
Pets who spend a lot of time outdoors need more food in the winter because keeping warm depletes energy. Routinely check your pet’s water dish to make certain the water is fresh and unfrozen. Use plastic food and water bowls rather than metal; when the temperature is low, your pet’s tongue can stick and freeze to metal.
Be careful with cats, wildlife, and cars
Warm engines in parked cars attract cats and small wildlife, who may crawl up under the hood. To avoid injuring any hidden animals, bang on your car’s hood to scare them away before starting your engine.
Protect paws from salt
The salt and other chemicals used to melt snow and ice can irritate the pads of your pet’s feet. Wipe all paws with a damp towel before your pet licks them and irritates his/her mouth.
Avoid antifreeze poisoning
Antifreeze is a deadly poison, but it has a sweet taste that may attract animals and children. Wipe up spills and store antifreeze (and all household chemicals) out of reach. Coolants and antifreeze made with propylene glycol are less toxic to pets, wildlife, and family. Read more about pets and antifreeze »
The best tip of all: keep your pets with you
Probably the best prescription for winter’s woes is to keep your dog or cat inside with you and your family. The happiest dogs are those who are taken out frequently for walks and exercise, but kept inside the rest of the time.
Dogs and cats are social animals who crave human companionship. Your animal companions deserve to live indoors with you and your family.