Attention Gardeners!

Part of Sue Ann’s Spring Blog series…

This is the time we start thinking about adding fertilizers and plant food to our gardens and lawn. If it is applied according to directions, you probably won’t have an issue with your pets getting sick from it. Try to put it down a day before it rains, so it can soak into the ground. However, you do want to make sure you don’t leave the bag open for your pet to get into because direct contact could cause serious toxicosis. You also want to make sure that your plant food and fertilizer is not mixed with other toxic products such as iron or insecticides as well because that could make them really sick too! If any of those things happen, call your vet or the emergency vet as soon as possible to prevent serious complications.

Bone meal, blood meal, feather meal, and fishmeal are also products to watch for. Not necessarily for the toxicity of the product, but because if ingested in larger amounts by a pet, they could result in a foreign body obstruction (FBO), severe pancreatitis or GI tract irritation. In addition, bone meal is often dusted on plant bulbs such as tulips, hyacinth and daffodil bulbs, which are extremely toxic to your dogs. Bone meal is highly palatable to dogs and can result in them digging up and ingesting your newly planted spring bulbs. If any of this happens, contact your vet or the emergency vet as soon as possible for treatment. You may need x-rays in the event of an FBO. You may also need fluids to help flush the system.

Mulch can be another toxin that you will need to protect your dogs from. Although it is usually shredded tree bark, it can also be compost (decaying matter) or Cocoa mulch, which is made from the shells or hulls of the cocoa bean. When it is first put down, there is a faint smell of chocolate, which is pretty enticing to dogs. If your dog decides he/she likes it and ingests more than a few licks, your dog could develop cocoa mulch poisoning, which is very similar to chocolate toxicosis. If your dog develops any of these clinical signs: agitation, vomiting, diarrhea, panting, tachycardia, polyuria, hyperthermia, muscle tremors or seizures, contact your veterinarian a.s.a.p.! Treatment may be necessary for 72-96 hours after ingestion or until the clinical signs are gone.

So, just a reminder – when doing your spring gardening, remember that there may be products which are toxic to your dogs and cats. The prognosis for the poisoned pet is fair to excellent when it is treated immediately. When in doubt, call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435.

( The information in this piece was summarized from “Fertilizer Dangers for Pets” by Dr. Justine Lee, DVM.

Spring is here, and you know what that means…

Part of Sue Ann’s Spring Blog series…

Yes, it is time to get your preventative care appointments scheduled! Fleas, Ticks, and Mosquito’s are on their way, and we all know it is more cost effective to prevent a disease than to treat one!

Your preventative care appointments will include a healthy exam, a plain heartworm test or a combination heartworm/tick disease test depending on your pet’s risk. It may also include vaccinations such as the Bordatella (Kennel Cough), Leptospirosis (A virus picked up from licking water), or Corona (virus picked up from sniffing stools {or worse}). We will also want to do a fecal exam to make sure that your pet has not picked up any parasites since the last time we’ve seen him/her. Again, the optional vaccines listed above depend on your pet’s risk factors such as; Do you go to the dog park? Do you board your dog? Does your dog lick from puddles of water on the ground? (in your yard or out) The Doctor and Tech staff will help you determine what is necessary to protect your pet.

Standards have changed…

It used to be that it was acceptable to take flea & tick and heartworm preventative beginning in early spring and continuing until the first frost. Not anymore! The standards changed several years ago and the new recommendation is to take these products year round. This should really not be an option. According to the Companion Animal Parasite Council (May 2016), there has been a 166 percent increase in positive heartworm cases from 2013 – 2015. And if you haven’t noticed, we have been having warmer weather in the typically colder months as well, which makes the flea & tick exposure greater for our pets.

We are ready!

We have a large variety of heartworm preventative medications including Heartgard, Triheart, Interceptor Plus and ProHeart 6. The first three are flavored treats; ProHeart 6 is a six-month preventative which is great for the healthy dog, and the client who has trouble remembering to give the monthly treat.

We also have a large variety of flea and tick preventative products in stock. Frontline Gold, Revolution, Vectra 3D which are monthly liquid, “spot on’s”, and Bravecto (treat form) which is good for 3 months. We have several other brands which we will be discontinuing, not because they are not good enough, but because we have too many types of products and we are working on narrowing it down. Please check out our specials page to see the clearance items for the flea and tick products. These deals may be especially helpful for you financially. We also have rebates, on just about everything else we offer, not only flea & tick products but heartworm products as well. You will want to call to find out what is the best product and deal for you.

Not just for dogs!

When you think flea/tick and heartworm preventative, you typically think about our canine friends. The bad news is that our feline friends can be affected by these parasites as well. The good news is that we have preventative for them too. If a cat gets heartworm disease, there is no treatment for it, so it is especially important to prevent this disease in them.

Preventatives come with a rebate and product guarantee!

Most of our products for flea and tick and heartworm preventative, whether for canine or feline, have very nice rebates. This makes our pricing very competitive with what you can find at the local store, plus when purchased through us they also come with a guarantee when administered properly.
There is no guarantee from the product you buy elsewhere. We also do not support any products purchased elsewhere. You would need to go back to the place you bought it for any issues you have with that product.

If you find you have questions regarding the flea/tick products or the heartworm preventatives, please give us a call at 262-547-7555.