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Blog: JoAnna Lou
Dog Walks Raise Money for Cancer Research
The 2 Million Dogs Foundation supports comparative oncology efforts
It seems everyone I talk to has a friend, relative or pet affected by cancer. The disease has touched way too many loved ones, both human and canine. As it turns out, when it comes to cancer, we may have more in common with dogs than we think. For instance mammary tumors are the most common tumors in intact female dogs and breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women. As more...
Blog: Shea Cox
The Science of Flatulence
There’s more to it than meets the nose!
As much as we might hate to admit it, flatulence is a normal biological function. A surprising amount of air is swallowed just with the simple act of eating, and if this is not burped out, it must exit through the other end. The amount of air swallowed tends to be increased when dogs feel they must eat quickly or in brachycephalic breeds (dogs with a compressed upper jaw and a short muzzle)...
Blog: Shea Cox
Be Prepared: Four Emergency Room Essentials
Lay the groundwork for quick, low-stress treatment
Working in the ER, I see a full range of preventable predicaments that complicate addressing a pet’s immediate health crisis. I’d like to highlight four simple measures you can take as a pet parent to prevent distress and concern should an emergency arise while you are away or if you need to seek care outside of your normal veterinary relationship. Records!! Keep a copy of every medical...
Blog: Shea Cox
A Vet’s Top 10 New Year’s Resolutions
Make 2012 happier and healthier for you and your pup
Veterinarians love putting together a plan of care for their patients—so why should New Year’s be an exception? Here are my suggestions for ten (I think fairly reasonable) resolutions that can make a big improvement for your dogs and you. For those who’ve already embraced many of these good habits, this list can serve as a chance to pat yourself on the back. Take your dog for more walks and...
Blog: Shea Cox
Christmas in the ER
A different kind of giving and receiving
While many people wake Christmas morning to open gifts and gather with family, we ER types begin and end our day with a slightly different routine. For me, my husband Scott, who is also an emergency veterinarian, and our two Dobie kids, Christmas Day begins with opening presents at 4 am, ends with eating a turkey dinner at 10 pm—with “challengingly good” chaos during the hours in between.  ...
Blog: Shea Cox
Dough Is A Don’t
Risks for dogs include obstruction and alcohol poisoning
My husband has recently taken up the delicious hobby of artisan bread baking. Although this is a pursuit my belly fully supports, it has reminded me of the dangers that raw bread dough poses for our pets. The risks are twofold. The first problem is that dough rapidly rises after ingestion and can cause life-threatening stomach distention and obstruction. The second—and potentially more serious—...
Blog: Shea Cox
Holiday Hazards for Pets
Tips for keeping your pet merry this season
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree! You are beautiful, but you can hurt me! As the holiday season gears up, have you noticed that with the increase in fun and festivities comes a simultaneous increase in the level pet mischief? There just seems to be no way for our curious pups to resist the allure of all that holiday paraphernalia.  Below is a list (all naughty, no nice!) of the common...
Blog: Guest Posts
Questions About Dog Breeding Won’t Go Away
New York Times Bulldog story exposes serious health issues, deep denial
In 2008, the BBC documentary “Pedigree Dogs Exposed”—which revealed high levels of disability, deformity and disease among purebred dogs—dropped like a bomb on the world of dog shows and breeding in the United Kingdom. A year-and-a-half later, the UK’s Kennel Club initiated steps to reform its practices and standards. Three years later, questions and calls for reform are finally gaining...
Blog: Shea Cox
Bloat, the Mother of All Emergencies
What you need to know about this life-threatening condition
There is no quicker way to jump to the front of the ER line than if you walk into the hospital with a distended dog. Bloat is a life-threatening condition that I treat frequently, and a good outcome is time-dependent. Last week, JoAnna Lou wrote about recognizing the signs of bloat and included an educational video of an Akita experiencing GDV (don’t worry, he survived!). This topic elicited...
Blog: Guest Posts
How Many Raisins in Raisin Bran?
A veterinarian with a potentially sick dog needed to know
Thanks to everyone who replied to my post, A Death in the Pack. Your stories and advice were both comforting and enlightening. Happily, Renzo dodged any long-term ill effects of his raisin binge and was back on stride within a few days. But there was one aspect of Raisingate that was not satisfactory. When I first brought Renzo in, my veterinarian tried to assess how many raisins he may have...

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