News & Events
Five Cities Veterinary Hospital Veterinarians share petcare tips, tackle interesting topics in the world of animal medicine, latest promotions and events, and personal experiences that hopefully help you to understand your pets better.
If you're like me, you check the labels on the food you purchase for yourself, why not for your pet! There are 5 popular terms that the Manufacturers' use on your pets food.
Pet Food Labels – 5 terms Manufacturers use most.
Before learning about the 5 most used labels on pet food, let’s talk about Ingredients and nutrients.
We all look at labels on our own food; Ingredients, nutrients etc. What’s the difference? Well, here’s some information that both that may help you. “Ingredients” are the vehicles that provide the “nutrients”, while “nutrients” are food components that support life and are metabolically useful. For example, Lamb is an ingredient that provides nutrients such as protein, fatty acids & vitamins.
On to the 5 Pet Food Label Terms!
1. “Natural”. When a pet food is marked “natural” this means that according to FDA guidelines food ingredients have not had any chemical alterations.
2. “Organic”. If a label/container says “Organic” then at least 95% of ingredient must be organic. The word “Organic” refers to a food or ingredient lacking genetically modified organisms or “GMO”.
3. & 4. “All Life Stages” or “Adult Maintenance”. These are formulated to meet requirements for a growing puppy or kitten. This is usually means that its higher in calories, calcium and phosphorus. Watch for phrases such as “Senior Medley”, that brand marketing is often used, which can be confusing to consumers. Always read the pet food packaging carefully; Some “Flowery” language usually amounts to nothing; The food’s nutrient profile is still “All Life Stages” which may not be appropriate for an adult or mature pet. A mature pet is recommended to stock with “Adult Maintenance” which can be designed for their appropriate nutritional needs.
5. “Supplemental” Foods. The word “Supplement” carries several shifty definitions depending on your source. Most Veterinarians state this signifies a pet product intended to augment not replace a regular diet. Be careful to not confuse a pet food for supplemental use with one meant for daily consumption.
As always, check with your Veterinarian on whether any of these 5 “Labels” would be helpful for your particular pet.Full Story
Spring time is upon us! Here's some information to consider before you start your Spring planting!
Spring flowers and plants are so colorful and create beautiful landscapes! If you own a dog or cat or both, here are some plants you should stay away from to avoid deadly exposure.
Sago Palms. They are bright green and add lush color to any landscape. Ingestion can induce vomiting, liver failure, seizures and often times death.
Amaryllis and Lillies. This effects Cats mostly. If ingested, the most common reaction is kidney failure.
Lily of the Valley, Oleander and Fox glove. These plants contain Cardia Glycoside which is naturally produced by plants and can have devastating results if ingested.
Rhododendron. All parts of the rhododendron plant are toxic for dogs. Symptoms include gastrointestinal upset followed by weakness, paralysis, and abnormal heart rhythms. Large doses can be fatal.
Japanese Yew. Japanese yew contains toxins called taxine A and B, which can be fatal if ingested by dogs, cats, horses or people. The primary symptoms are tremors, difficulty breathing and vomiting as well as seizures in dogs. Ingesting the plant can cause sudden death due to heart failure. Any person or animal that has eaten any part of the plant needs immediate medical treatment. Strangely, the plant isn’t toxic to white-tailed deer, which relish the taste of the foliage. Because of its toxic properties, Japanese yew shouldn’t be planted in family gardens where children and animals play. The bright green foliage and red berries make festive holiday decorations, but you shouldn’t use them in homes with children or pets, or in homes where children may visit over the holidays.
Castor Bean. Castor Beans contain Ricin and are highly toxic. They can cause multiple organ failure and should be avoided by all animals.
Autumn Crocus. The Autumn Crocus (Colchicum autumnale) is a flower that physically resembles a true Crocus plant, but is actually a lily. This flower, if ingested, can cause vomiting, diarrhea, trouble breathing, shock, seizures and possible death.
Hops. Hops are used in beer brewing. Ingestion by dogs causes their body temperature to sky rocket! Reported cases of Hops ingestion, temperatures spiked to as high as 108 which causes, organ damage or failure, brain swelling and kidney failure.Full Story
News & Events
Although this past year has seen very little rainfall there are still plenty of allergens in our area to cause allergies for our dogs and cats. Allergy is a state of hypersensitivity in which exposure to a harmless substance known as an allergen induces the body’s immune system to “overreact”. The incidence of allergies is increasing in both humans and their pets. People with allergies usually have “hay fever” (watery eyes, runny nose and sneezing) or asthma. While dogs and cats can rarely also have respiratory allergies, more commonly they experience the effects of allergic hypersensitivities as skin problems. Though there are a variety of presentations, this can often be seen as redness and itching, recurring skin or ear infections, and hair loss. This is sometimes called eczema or atopic dermatitis. Coping with an itchy pet can be an extremely frustrating experience for you, the pet owner, and can truly test the limits of the human-animal bond. Persistent scratching and chewing by the pet can also result in self-excoriation and open wounds. The following information is intended to provide the pet owner with a basic understanding of the most common underlying causes of itching and allergies in small animals.
Almost all pet owners would admit they have heard about things like pet overpopulation, crowding at animal shelters, the need for humane societies to help animals who don’t have homes and the importance of spaying and neutering your pets. The problem is, there are quite a few “myths” out there which can make deciding whether or not to have your pet altered very difficult. Here are a few common misconceptions as well as some great reasons to consider spaying or neutering your furry family members!
The Berg girls have a love for animals just like their parents. I’m sure it comes as no surprise to anyone to learn our family has 3 cats, 2 dogs, a corn snake, a leopard gecko, a tree frog (caught in church under a pew), 3 rabbits, more guppies than we know what to do with (don’t frogs eat guppies??) and 4 horses. Why do we have so many animals? Well, to put it bluntly, because we are suckers. That plus the fact that our children seem to be able to find pets or make pets out of pretty much anything they find. The majority of our pets are cast-offs that needed homes. Orphaned kittens that we got too attached to, a dog that was hit by a car and whose owner couldn’t afford care, horses slated for euthanasia because of injuries that prevented them from racing, and so on. And though it feels like I’m taking care of a farm every day as I make my way around feeding, cleaning, grooming, etc., it’s worth every second.
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