Saturday, February 24, 2018

Top Veterinary Articles of the Week: Cholecalciferol Intoxication, Borborygmi, and more ...

Cholecalciferol Intoxication – Too Much of a Good Thing

Christopher Byers/CriticalCareDVM

Top Veterinary Articles of the Week: Cholecalciferol Intoxication, Borborygmi, and more ...
Vitamin D deficiency can lead to problems such as Rickets. Vitamin D toxicity can cause death.
Photo vetbook

Are you asking yourself, what the heck is cholecalciferol? Cholecalciferol is vitamin D3. There are actually five forms of vitamin D; who knew? D3 is the form that skin synthesizes during exposure to sunlight and it is the form used in vitamin supplements.

Active vitamin D is a steroid hormone which regulates calcium absorption, regulates body levels of calcium and phosphorus and mineralization of bones. Deficiency manifests where calcium is needed, particularly in bones but can also affect heart function and immune function.

Too much vitamin D, on the other hand, can be extremely toxic. How toxic? It is used in certain rodenticides; that's how toxic.

Learn all about it in Dr. Byers' article.

US Canine Flu Update

Dr. Scott Weese/Worms and Germs Blog

This year's flu season seems to be quite horrific. Definitely for the bipeds but dog flu is going around too, particularly in some regions. Northern California and Nevada seem to be the worst.

Check out Worms and Germs Blog for updates.

Why Dogs Mark and What To Do about It

Dr. Marty Becker

Top Veterinary Articles: Why Dogs Mark and What To Do about It

For dogs, marking is a normal behavior. It's the way they communicate with each other and other animals. When Cookie marks on a fox trail or urine, I praise her for "using her words."

It can become a problem, though, when your dog decides they ought to mark inside the house. I feel fortunate that none of our dogs ever got that bright idea. Though Roxy, when she was staying at a farm, in a large dog house with other dogs, she would deposit her poop just at the entrance. People were wondering why the heck she would poop in the house. She had a very good reason, though, it kept all the other dogs out and she had the place all to herself.

If your dog starts soiling in the house, the first step is to make sure there isn't an underlying medical issue. That might be a UTI but it could also be something unrelated to the urinary tract. It could be because your dog cannot help it or it could be a marking behavior. But, even a marking behavior might happen because your dog isn't feeling well and is trying to secure a safe space for themselves.

Find out about this on Dr. Becker's blog.

Is Your Dog’s Stomach Making Noises?

Dr. Eric Barchas

Noisy stomach happens. Is it a sign of a problem? It can be.

"The gurgling sounds are produced when gas moves from one portion of the intestines to another." ~Dr. Eric Barchas

Based on my experience, I put stomach noises into two categories--bubbly sounds and gurgly sounds.

With Jasmine, gurgly belly it came hand-in-hand with an upset stomach and an IBD flare-up. Cookie gets a noisy stomach for a similar reason when her belly is upset. The sounds seem to be a result of an empty stomach because a loss of appetite always comes first, followed by the noises.

The sound I'm talking about here is very distinct; not your regular "bubbly" sounds. Very loud, too. The normal bubbly sounds can be heard only from up close. To me, the difference between normal stomach noises and an upset belly noises is pretty clear.

Besides IBD, serious causes of stomach noises include intestinal parasites, foreign bodies, hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, toxicities or adverse reactions to medications, metabolic or glandular disorders, and even cancer.

As with most things, it's important to look at the big picture. Are there other symptoms such as loss of appetite, lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea? Does it happen frequently?

Read Dr. Barchas' article to find out more.

Triggers Spinal Disc Ruptures, Severe Pain, Nerve Damage, Even Paralysis

Dr. Karen Becker/Mercola Healthy Pets

Researchers at the University of California-Davis recently identified a genetic mutation linked to chondrodystrophy (CDDY). Chondrodystrophy is a condition that interferes with normal development of cartilage and, among other things, can trigger premature degeneration of intervertebral discs. The list of breeds in which this genetic mutation was found is quite long but it generally includes "short" dogs.

Find out more in Dr. Becker's article.

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