Monday, April 24, 2017

Adoption Monday: Mary, Rottweiler, Toronto, ON

Mary desperately needs an experienced large breed foster home. 

It seems that Mary had spent her life as a “breeder”. She is a very shy girl who has been let down by people, therefore it takes her a little time to warm up. Mary seems to recover quickly from her shyness if given the space to allow her to come to you. Once she has bonded, her true personality comes out.

Mary will lean into you for pets and love. She shows no food or toy aggression.

Mary has met some dogs while at the shelter and as long as they don’t rush over to her, she seems fine.

Mary needs a quiet home with large breed experience that is committed to helping Mary learn to trust again. 

She has given too much of her life already making profit for someone; it is time for her to know what it feels like to live in a home as a cherished member of a family.

Mary will also need a nice yard with a secure fence where she can enjoy the warm summer days. No children under the age of 14.

If you feel you have the home to help Mary shine, please visit and fill in the on-line application. Application to foster is the same as for adoption.


ANML-RESQ is a dedicated group of volunteers looking out for the 4-legged creatures we share this world with. Their goal is to save a dog or cat from being euthanized in a shelter, through no fault of their own - just in the wrong place at the wrong time. If they don't have a foster home available they will work with other reputable organizations to find a place.

ANML-RESQ relies solely on donations and fundraisers to spay/neuter, vaccinate and microchip their pets prior to adoption.  They don't even use funds for gas to transport the pets in their program to their new homes!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Top Veterinary Articles of the Week: Enlarged Lymph Nodes, Dewclaws, and more ...

Lymph Node Enlargement in Dogs & Cats – A Swelling Not to Be Ignored!

Dr. Christopher Byers/CriticalCareDVM

Lymph nodes you can feel. Image Willows

To understand the significance of enlarged lymph nodes, it's important to know what they are. Lymph nodes are part of the lymphatic system, a system that plays a major role in the immune system. A large part of its job is "taking out the garbage," in other words, transporting toxins and waste products from cells. The lymph nodes are "check-point stations" that can take care of minor infections or alert the immune system to a problem.

The reasons why the lymph nodes can become enlarged have to do with their function, and the causes range from infections, immune-mediated diseases, to cancer. The treatment, then, depends on the cause. There are often times when aspirating some of the content of the enlarged node and checking it out under a microscope is a great idea.

Not every time your dog has enlarged lymph node(s), it means it's cancer. But lymphoma is always a high suspect. Jasmine, though, had enlarged local lymph nodes a few times and every time it had to do with an infection and not cancer.

However, never ever ignore enlarged lymph nodes if you find any. Any cause behind it needs to be addressed, and in case it was a lymphoma, the speed of treatment has a significant bearing on prognosis.

Dog Dewclaws: What Are They Good for? You Might Be Surprised!

Dr. Marty Becker

Photo IHeartDogs. Check out IHeartDogs great article on the subject.

Dewclaws are weird things. It's like dogs were meant to have a thumb, but then nature changed its mind about it. Most of our dogs already had them removed before we got them. The argument behind it is that they are extremely prone to being injured. It is true that Jasmine's best buddy injured his enough times.

The main question is whether or not dew claws serve any function or not. And there are arguments that they do. If that's the case, automatic removal should be at least reconsidered.

Read Dr. Becker's thoughts.

Top 10 Mistakes New Pet Parents Make

Dr. Krista Magnifico/Diary of a Real-Life Veterinarian

We are all perfect and never make any mistakes, right? Oh, wait, that's probably on some different planet or in a different dimension. I certainly made mistakes, and I'm sure that one day, you might too.

What are the ten most common mistakes new pet parents make according to Dr. Magnifico?
  1. Not being prepared for their life to change
  2. Not understanding this is a living being who will need them, their wallet, and will have stumbles along the way
  3. Not making a designated pet place and allocating enough time
  4. Not knowing how to love on their terms
  5. Not being educated on the pet's breed, needs, and behaviors
  6. Not seeing life from their vantage point or standing on their paws
  7. Not sharing the joy of being a parent
  8. Not socializing early enough and thoroughly enough
  9. Not raising an independent, responsible member of society
  10. Not knowing who to get advice from and not getting help early enough

What do you think? Have you made any of these mistakes? Have you made different ones? Or have you not make any?

Read Dr. Krista's explanation behind her top ten list.

How to Identify and Treat Ant Bites in Dogs

Dr. Patrick Mahaney

Where I come from, we only had two kinds of ants, and while their bites stung, they weren't dangerous and didn't hurt for very long. And they'd leave you alone unless you stuck your face into an anthill, which, coincidentally, I happened to manage once.

Dogs, of course, are much more likely to stick their noses where they could get hurt; there was a number of times Cookie thought that digging in an ant hill would have been a great idea.

On top of that, not all ants were created equal, and some are much more dangerous than others, depending on where you live. Around here, ants are not high on my list of bug concerns. If I lived somewhere south, I'd look at things differently. Fire ants, for example, are a whole different story.

How do you recognize and treat ant bites? Find out in Dr. Mahaney's article.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Adoption Monday: Saige, Rottweiler, Toronto, ON

Saige is a very sweet girl who loves everyone she meets.

Saige is good with most all dogs although she would do best in a home with a large, laid back male. She adores her foster brother Jack.

Saige has met a lot of children on her walks and she is very respectful of them.

She has come a long way with her leash walks but she does get reactive when meeting dogs on leash during walks and having never gone for walks previously she can be reactive of vehicles or motorcycles pass by.

Saige needs a large breed experienced home that will continue with her leash training. She will need a home with a fenced in backyard where she can run and play and spend summer days laying in the sun.

Saige is not destructive when left alone in the home. She is spayed and up to date on vaccines.

If you are looking for the “total package” and a wonderful family companion, look no further. Saige could be just what you are looking for.


ANML-RESQ is a dedicated group of volunteers looking out for the 4-legged creatures we share this world with. Their goal is to save a dog or cat from being euthanized in a shelter, through no fault of their own - just in the wrong place at the wrong time. If they don't have a foster home available they will work with other reputable organizations to find a place.

ANML-RESQ relies solely on donations and fundraisers to spay/neuter, vaccinate and microchip their pets prior to adoption.  They don't even use funds for gas to transport the pets in their program to their new homes!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Top Veterinary Articles of the Week: Jerky Treats, Kibble and Raw, and more ...

A Vet Wants to Know: Why Are You Still Giving Your Dog Jerky Treats?

Dr. Eric Barchas

Have you ever bought treats for your dog from a bulk bin at your nearest pet store? I would like to hope that readers of this blog or any other educated dog parents would never do that. But stores are still loaded with this stuff ... somebody is buying it. We can't wait for pet stores to grow a conscience. But if nobody was buying, nobody would be selling. It's a simple equation.

Perhaps not everybody knows yet that such jerky treats can kill their dog. Perhaps they feel that it's not going to happen to them. Perhaps they can bring themselves to deprive their dog of the joy on munching on these.

There is a very simple solution. Make your own. Stop buying stuff that can potentially harm or even kill your dog.

Our dogs always loved jerky treats of all kinds. We've been making jerky treats ourselves for years. Get yourself a dehydrator and get "jerkin." It's easy. And it's the only way to have the cake and eat it too.

Is It OK to Mix a Raw Diet and Kibble?

Dr. Peter Dobias

This is a very interesting question the answer to which depends on whom you ask. Some veterinarians focused on nutrition say it's fine, and some say it is not. So how is it?

Or is the answer the same if you asked whether you can have a raw salad with cooked dinner? Strangely, nobody has asked that question as far as I know.

Why would anybody bring this up in the first place? It seems to be a matter of whether processed/cooked and raw foods digest the same way at the same speeds. And there are arguments about that. There are also debates whether the problem is that proteins and starches digest differently and at different speeds.

I don't think there is any evidence conclusive enough to determine who is right and who is wrong. I don't mix kibble and raw diet but do I think it's wrong? I think it depends how an individual dog does with it.

See what Dr. Dobias thinks.

Expert tips on dealing with your dog’s fear of thunderstorms

Dr. Marty Becker

Believe it or not, we've already had a few thunderstorms this year. We've been fortunate that other than JD's mild concern, I'm the one who is the most worried about such things. I call JD's concern mild because as long as he had either Jasmine or Cookie to mirror, he'd always calm down because they were calm.

For many dogs, though, a thunderstorm feels like an armageddon the end of the world. There are a number of products one can try to alleviate the thunderstorm anxiety, starting with herbal essences, calming pheromones or shirts and wraps.

Find out what Dr. Marty Becker recommends.

How to help your dog with painful ear infections

Dr. Krista Magnifico

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Useful Tips: What Do We Use for the Occasional Morning Stomach Upset?

First, I feel I have to emphasize that this tip is meant to mend an occasional morning stomach upset only. While it has become accepted that for some dogs waking up with an upset stomach every morning can be normal, I do not believe that. If my dog was consistently nauseous in the morning, I'd want to know exactly why that is happening.

Jasmine, for example, did have this issue consistently, whether or not she got something to eat before bed. Only years later she was finally diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Ever since she was a puppy she would refuse her breakfast and generally wouldn't eat anything until after a walk.

It is a familiar scenario.

A dog might frown at their breakfast, try to eat grass, their stomach might start making grumbly noises.

For Cookie, eating grass normally helps, however, when it's time for it to come out, the long pieces make that business quite challenging. Overall, I don't mind my dogs munching on grass a little bit but in excess, it can irritate the GI tract.

The theory is that this happens from acid build up in the stomach.

One of the recommendations I got from our vet was giving a soda cracker before bed. We did try that, and Cookie loves soda crackers for some reason, but it didn't seem to make any difference. Plus I didn't want to make it a habit and how would one predict what is to come the next morning?

The first time I got a similar idea was when Cookie was on NSAIDs after her injury.

She was out for lab workup so she had to skip her breakfast. The whole trip added up to a long day and by the time Cookie came home her stomach was all unhappy and making all sorts of noise. There was no way I could convince her to eat anything in order to give her the meds.

Going with the theory that it was from too much acid in the stomach, I remembered that at one time Jasmine was taking Tums to help with that. We did not have any but we did have calcium pills. Should work the same, right? So hubby pillinated her one of those. Not long after that the stomach upset cleared and I was able to feed and medicate her.

Cookie gets her belly upset in the morning every now and then.

When that happens, all she wants to do is to eat grass. Then, one morning, I remembered how well the calcium pill worked and I got the bright idea of offering her a little bit of sour cream. To my surprise, she accepted it even though she was refusing any other food. I fed her a bit of that and shortly after her stomach settled quite nicely.

I've used that for quite some time now and it works every time.

I'm sure plain yogurt could be used as well, however, we don't always have that. We always do have sour cream. I believe that either would work the same.

Of course, if your dog happens to have an issue with dairy, don't try this trick. Otherwise, though, it is safe and so far it's been very effective.

I would not use Pepto Bismol for my dog but I have no reservation offering a bit of safe sour cream.

If you decide to try it, let me know how it worked for your dog.

Don't forget, though, if your dog gets upset stomach daily, and/or is vomiting, do see a veterinarian.

Related articles:
Useful Tips: Bandaging Your Dog's Foot? 
Useful Tips: Stomach Unhappy from Too Much Acid?
Useful Tip: You Don't Have To Dish Out For An Expensive Dog Dryer
Useful Tips: Winter Dog Safety Tip
Useful Tips: Battling With The Fish Oil Gel Caps?
Useful Tips: Visual Chart
Dog First Aid Kit: What's In Yours? 
Wound Care - Scissor-Free Bandaging 
Useful Tips: Compounding at Home - DIY Medication Capsules 
Useful Tips: Dodging Deer Flies
What Do I Do When I Run out of Dog Food?