Traveling with your pet

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For many families, summer means family vacations which means traveling. Whether it’s to the beach, Disneyworld, or even just to a local campground or lake, the chance to break away from the daily grind can be irresistible. For those of us with pets planning for even a long weekend away also involves deciding how to care for our pets, or – if traveling with a pet – how to accommodate his or her needs.

For those considering bringing their pets along for the fun, there are some considerations that should factor into your pet’s travel plans.

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Fourth of July Fun.

Did you know that more pets go missing on July 4th than any other day of the year? Unfortunately the safety concerns surrounding the 4th of July, don’t stop with missing pets.  With a few precautions taken before the big day you can ensure your pet stays happy, calm, and safe.

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Lawn and Garden Safety

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Over the past week I have found myself spending more and more time outdoors as the temperatures rise and the days get longer.  Weekends have been filled with yard work to try and beautify our lawn and (lets be honest here) try to keep alive all the beautiful landscaping that came with the first home we purchased last summer.  I may have been born with ten fingers and ten toes, but I think someone forgot to bless me with the green thumb that seems to have skipped a generation in my family.  However I am doing my best to learn the ins and outs of gardening and landscaping which means I have also been keeping an eye on the products I am using and the plants around my home to insure the safety of my furry children as well as the handful of friendly neighborhood cats.

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Canine Influenza

Do you remember the Great Canine Influenza Outbreak of 2015?  Most of us outside the Chicagoland area were left unaffected but unfortunately Canine Influenza (CIV) seems to be causing quite a stir so far in 2016 with multiple local media outlets covering reports of cases in neighboring McLean county and even at the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital.  Unfortunately, this is an illness that is likely to continue to make headlines in the weeks to come.  I hope to be able to place some of you at ease with some cold hard facts about precautionary measures you can take, and what to expect if your pet is suspected of being affected.

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Whats the big deal about Heartworms?

Heartworm

When it comes to the well being of our furry family members, their heath and happiness is always our priority. One of the best ways to keep your pet(s) healthy is to practice preventative medicine.  Prevention of heartworm disease is a very important piece of the preventative medicine puzzle. The first step in prevention of any illness is having a better understanding of the disease. Continue reading “Whats the big deal about Heartworms?”

Ditch the Itch

April showers bring May flowers! Unfortunately along with the flowers comes the re-emergence of allergy season.  Nationwide pet insurance, recently sorted its database of more than 550,000 insured pets to determine the top 10 dog medical conditions in 2015. Number one on that list was Skin Allergies.   Continue reading “Ditch the Itch”

The Thunder Rolls

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As we jump feet first into Spring, it is easy to get excited about the great things to come.  Grilling outdoors, flowers in bloom, sunshine for days, etc.  Unfortunately while some of us may revel in the winds and showers that April brings, some of our furry counterparts are less than thrilled for the exciting weather developments that accompany the start of Spring.  If you are the owner of a pet with a “storm phobia” you are not alone.

It’s a condition we deal with frequently as veterinarians, and sometimes as pet owners ourselves.  Just like a systemic illness each pet with a storm phobia is different. The manifestations and coping mechanisms for each pet’s phobia will vary.  Some cases may be minor, resulting in some restlessness or panting, while other pets end up costing owners large sums of money in home repair as their dog attempts to tunnel through dry-wall or destroy furniture.  Although we may not be able to eradicate the signs of unease in their entirety, it is important to address these behaviors and lessen their severity (as much for your sanity as your pet’s).

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