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Wellness: Healthy Living
Looking for Dr Right
Searching for the ideal vet
We don’t ask for much. For starters, we want you to have the brains of Einstein, the compassion of Mother Teresa and the patience of Job. In terms of medical skills, we’d like you to possess the sleuthing abilities of television’s Dr. House, the empathy of Dr. Dolittle and the bedside manner of Marcus Welby, MD (but not be so ancient that you remember that kindly TV doctor). While we appreciate...
Wellness: Healthy Living
Nail Trimming Tips
Gather up a high quality pair of trimmers and some styptic powder, such as Kwik-Stop or other product, to stop bleeding if you nick the quick. You may want to sit on the floor with your dog in your lap, or have someone hold your dog on a table. Hold your dog’s paw firmly and push on the pads to extend the nail. Locate where the quick ends. With clear or light nails, it is easy to see the pink...
Wellness: Health Care
Power of Canine Determination
Back from the Brink
The first time I saw Mugsy, he was under anesthesia, prepped for surgery; huge patches of skin over his legs, chest and flanks were beginning to slough and surgical intervention was required. “Is that what I think it is?” I asked Dr. Khorzad, the ER attending in charge of the case. “Yep. Necrotizing fasciitis,” she replied, avoiding the more sensational and fear-mongering synonym: “flesh-eating...
Wellness: Health Care
Is It Time?
An examination of coming to terms with our worst fears
The way we loved her—my husband and I —ended in a fierce custody battle when we divorced, both of us threatening the other with lawyers and lawsuits. Which, of course, was ridiculous, since animals, as we found out, are not family but property. Which made Riva Jones technically mine, since I’d adopted her before the marriage. But as we all know, in matters of the heart, “technically” and “legally...
News: Guest Posts
Pet Loss Research:
How Does the Loss of a Dog Impact the Wellbeing of other Dogs in the Household?
I recently came upon the link for a pet loss survey through social media. My summer of 2013 had far too much pet loss. Curious, I went to the website, which is sponsored by the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine. I met the study criteria: over 18 years of age; have lost a pet from my household due to death, temporary or permanent absence; and at the time of the loss, had...
Wellness: Health Care
Saying Good-Bye
Palliative and hospice care making strides
My first contact from Stryker’s family came via email: “He was just diagnosed with anal cancer and also has a lymph node that is affected. We don’t think we want to put him through two surgeries. Would it be possible to set up a time for you to visit him?” Stryker, an exuberant eight-year-old chocolate Labrador, met me at the door with a stuffed manatee in his mouth. Tail wagging and full of...
Good Dog: Behavior & Training
Run for Your Quality of Your Dog's Life
Strategies for both you and your dog.
My favorite wooden salad servers are decorated with Bugsy’s teeth marks. Excluding unprovoked attacks on innocent squeaky toys and the occasional disemboweling of one of his stuffed animals, he wasn’t a destructive chewer by nature, and never damaged anything else. When I came home from work and saw him enjoying these Costa Rican souvenirs, I could hardly blame him, and felt no irritation...
Wellness: Food & Nutrition
GMO: Are genetically modified crops safe in your dog food?
A vet speaks out on genetically modified pet food.
Most dogs now dine on some type of genetically modified (GM) food, often in the form of corn and soy in their kibble. As these ingredients increasingly enter the food supply, we have one more reason to wonder if our shopping choices might be harming our pets. More animal feeding studies are needed, experts say, and a recent long-term, peer-reviewed report points out why. It found that a diet of...
Wellness: Recipes
Thursday Thanksgiving
Fast, easy and nutritious turkey feast.
It doesn’t have to be Thanksgiving to give thanks! Working in animal rescue, I’ve seen a lot of heartbreak, but I’ve also seen and experienced the love that a rescued animal can bring to a human and vice versa. Each one of my rescued dogs gives me so much joy and love every day—cooking for them and making sure they are healthy is the least I can do to say thanks. This recipe is chock-full of...
Wellness: Health Care
What makes a good vet?
It’s about time.
Every so often after an exhaustive consultation, I am the lucky recipient of a peculiar compliment: “I wish you were my doctor!” When I was a young veterinarian, I was thrilled to be held in higher esteem than my colleagues in human medicine. Now, years later, I see the sleight of hand in a trick that flatters my profession at the expense of another. It’s all about time. Time is critical to...

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