V23I1 (Feb/Mar 2021)

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Animal Wellness

Animal Wellness


CONTENTS February/March 2021

Columns 14 SPOTLIGHT Vaccinating your adult dog or cat

Rather than having your adult dog or cat vaccinated every year, consider these important factors and make an informed decision that will optimize his health and well-being.

34 Features 10

Raw meat and bones — the answer to periodontal disease?


raining your dog — it’s about T more than obedience

A look at how nutrition impacts your dog or cat’s dental health, and why a raw diet may be the best way to prevent periodontal disease.


Training should involve a science-based positive approach that encourages dogs to learn through discovery, play, and reward.

H ow chiropractic care can help dogs with digestive upsets

Chiropractic care isn’t just for back problems — it can also help relieve digestive upsets in your canine companion.



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he art of dog T walking

Dog walking isn’t just a task… it’s an art! Here’s everything you need to buy, do and know to turn your amateur stroll into a brilliant masterpiece.


20 FUN & GAMES Create an indoor obstacle course for your dog!

When winter weather drives you indoors, entertain your canine companion by building your own indoor dog obstacle course.

22 NEED TO KNOW Pet theft

Pet theft is a serious problem and the pandemic has made it worse. Luckily, there’s lots you can do to protect your dog or cat from being stolen.


It’s true that cats can contract COVID-19. Let’s look at how, and what you can do to protect your own feline companion.


Managing your dog or cat’s emotional state takes the stress out of vet visits Recognizing and managing your dog or cat’s emotional state and primary needs can help take the stress out of vet visits.


26 SAFETY FIRST How disinfectant and sanitizer use may be affecting our animals During the pandemic, we’ve been spending extra time disinfecting and sanitizing our homes and hands. Is this chemical exposure having an adverse effect on our dogs and cats?

28 DENTAL CARE Homeopathic help for your dog or cat’s dental problems Discover how homeopathy can help treat dental disease in your canine or feline companion.


A 15-minute weekly dog grooming routine Make grooming your pup quick and easy with this 15-minute weekly regimen!


How electro-pollution affects your dog or cat Electromagnetic radiation from wireless technology is having an adverse impact on human and animal health. Here’s how to help protect your dog or cat from this electro-pollution.




Ayurvedic health for your dog

How Tui Na can help ease your cat’s arthritis

Canine conditions that respond well to acupuncture


Incorporating these ancient Ayurvedic principles and techniques into your dog’s lifestyle will help prevent illness while increasing his everyday health and well-being.


Choosing a wheelchair for a dog with mobility issues If your dog has mobility problems, the right wheelchair can make a huge difference to his quality of life.



Tui Na, also known as acupressure-massage, is an effective way to alleviate the discomfort of arthritis in cats.



Preparing your home for a new dog Adopting or rescuing a new dog? Here are six ways to prepare your home and family so the newcomer’s arrival goes as smoothly as possible.


Many health problems in dogs, from allergies to kidney disease, respond well to acupuncture. Here are the most common conditions this ancient modality can help treat.


De-stress with a cat coloring book! There’s a reason we loved to color so much as children — it’s relaxing as well as fun! Add a cat coloring book to the mix and you have the perfect solution to stress.

Departments 7 Editorial 18 In the news 32 Product picks

57 Beat the February blues!

60 Wellness

resource guide

37 Training tips

75 To the rescue

43 From the NASC

78 Let's get social

50 In the news

79 Marketplace

Social Media

79 Events 80 Must reads 81 Classifieds 82 Newsworthy

Tips, contests and more! AnimalWellnessMagazine

News, events, and tips! @ AW_magazine

Tips, pet photos, and more! AnimalWellnessMagazine

Crafts, laughs, and more! AnimalWellness

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For a long, healthy life!



EDITORIAL DEPARTMENT Editor-in-Chief: Dana Cox Managing Editor: Ann Brightman Senior Content Editor: Emily Watson Senior Graphic Designer: Dawn Cumby-Dallin Senior Graphic Designer: Alyssa Dow Graphic Design Intern: Ethan Vorstenbosch Social/Digital Media Manager: Jamie McClure Editorial/Multimedia Specialist: Lucas Graham Web Design & Development: Lace Imson Cover Image Courtesy of: Tatiana Gladskik COLUMNISTS & CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Sally E. Bahner Ian Billinghurst, BVSc (Hons), BScAgr Dip Ed Christina Chambreau, DVM, CVH Carmen Colitz, PhD, DACVO Laurin Cooke, DVM W. Jean Dodds, DVM Nicole Ellis, CPDT-KA Janet Gordon Palm, DVM, CVCP Jodie Gruenstern, DVM, CVA Krystn Janisse Katie B. Kangas, DVM, CVA, CVCP Terri McCalla, MS, DACVO Judy Morgan, DVM, CVA, CVCP, CVFT Sandra Murphy Ingrid Niesman, MS, PhD Bill Ormston, DVM Amanda Ree Scott Reinhardt Amy Snow Victoria Stilwell Lori Wade Tonya Wilhelm Nancy Zidonis ADMINISTRATION & SALES President/C.E.O.: Tim Hockley Accounting: Susan Smith Circulation & Office Manager: Libby Sinden Subscription Services/Marketing & Administration Associate: Brittany Silloats


Tatiana Gladskik

Here are two besties who know how to weather this COVID winter – just cuddle up and relax! You can do the same with this issue of Animal Wellness, which features loads of timely topics from dental care to activities you can enjoy at home with your own dog or cat.


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SUBMISSIONS: Please email all editorial material to Ann Brightman, Managing Editor, at ann@redstonemediagroup.com. We welcome previously unpublished articles and color pictures either in jpeg, tif or disc form at 300 dpi. We cannot guarantee that either articles or pictures will be used or that they will be returned. We reserve the right to publish all letters received. You can also mail submissions to: Animal Wellness Magazine, 160 Charlotte St., Suite 202, Peterborough, ON, Canada K9J 2T8. Please direct other correspondence to info@redstonemediagroup.com.

ADVERTISING SALES National Sales Manager/Editorial Associate: Kat Shaw, (866) 764-1212 ext. 315 katshaw@redstonemediagroup.com Western Regional Manager: Becky Starr, (866) 764-1212 ext. 221 becky@redstonemediagroup.com Multimedia Consultant: Britt Silver, (866) 764-1212 ext 226 britt@redstonemediagroup.com CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING: Libby Sinden classifiedads@animalwellnessmagazine.com TO SUBSCRIBE: Subscription price at time of this issue is $24.00 in the U.S. and Canada, including taxes for six issues shipped via surface mail. Subscriptions can be processed by: Website: www.animalwellnessmagazine.com Phone: (866) 764-1212 ext 115 US MAIL: Animal Wellness Magazine, 6834 S University Blvd PMB 155 Centennial, CO 80122 CDN MAIL: Animal Wellness Magazine, 160 Charlotte St., Suite 202, Peterborough, ON, Canada K9J 2T8 Subscriptions are payable by VISA, MasterCard, American Express, check or money order. The material in this magazine is not intended to replace the care of veterinary practitioners. The opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the editor, and different views may appear in other issues. Redstone Media Group Inc., publisher of Animal Wellness, does not promote any of the products orservices advertised by a third party advertiser in this publication, nor does Redstone Media Group Inc. verify the accuracy of any claims made in connection with such advertisers. Refund policy: call or write our customer service department and we will refund unmailed issues. DEALER INQUIRIES WELCOME: Animal Wellness Magazine is available at a discount for resale in retail shops and through various organizations. Call Libby at (866) 764-1212 ext 100 and ask for dealer magazine sales, fax us at (705) 742-4596 or e-mail at libby@animalwellnessmagazine.com


Animal Wellness Magazine (ISSN 1710-1190) is published six times a year by Redstone Media Group Inc. Publications Mail Agreement #40884047. Entire contents copyrightŠ 2021. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted by any means, without prior written permission of the publisher. Publication date: January 2021. proudly supporting

improving the lives of animals... one reader at a time.



dilemmas U

p until about 12 years ago, we always had big dogs. These huskies and husky mixes were harder for rescues to adopt out so they ended up with us. From a dental standpoint, they made our lives pretty easy. A raw diet that included some raw bones, and some maintenance toothbrushing seemed to take care of their beautiful smiles. Our husky, Sabrina, absolutely loved to get her teeth brushed, though that may have had more to do with the peanut butter-flavored toothpaste than the actual brushing! But then we adopted Muffie, our adorable little Shih Poo. As befits her genetics and puppy mill background, her teeth require way more attention. And it’s incredible how tightly a nine-pound dog can close her mouth when she wants to. Fortunately, we’ve solved our dental dilemma. The solution includes a baby-sized toothbrush, flavored toothpaste, dental spray and a lot of “sweet talk” that involves many repetitions of “Good girl!” Muffie still has dental cleanings at the vet’s office and has even had a few teeth removed (some were so loose I’m surprised they didn’t fall out!) but our system definitely helps. In this issue of Animal Wellness, we address why keeping your dog or cat’s pearly whites clean and healthy is an important step towards optimizing his well-being. To start, we feature a comprehensive article on how nutrition can affect your animal’s dental health, both positively or negatively. We also look at how homeopathy can be used to effectively support dental wellness and even help treat periodontal disease in dogs and cats. I’m definitely looking forward to trying some of these remedies with Muffie!

As the pandemic wears on, and we continue spending much of our time at home, you might be wondering how your four-legged friend is being affected long-term by your COVID-related lifestyle changes. This issue provides crucial information on how increased antiseptic use, along with the ramped-up electromagnetic radiation produced by our phones, tablets and other devices, may be influencing your dog or cat’s well-being. You’ll also find timely advice on how to keep your dog active with an indoor obstacle course, along with ways to make the most of your daily walks. Learn how to incorporate a 15-minute dog grooming routine into your schedule, and discover why coloring is such a great way to reduce stress (it’s even better with a cat coloring book)! On the topic of felines, we feature an informative article on COVID-19 in cats and whether or not you need to be concerned about your own kitty. While it’s hard to say when life will get back to normal, continuing to maintain the health and well-being of our dogs and cats can help give us a sense of control and peace — and thank them for the dependable love and companionship they give us during these unpredictable and unprecedented times!

Dana Cox Editor-in-Cheif

Visit our facebook page at facebook.com/AnimalWellnessMagazine Feline Wellness


CONTRIBUTORS Veterinarian Dr. Ian Billinghurst received his Veterinary Science degree (honors) from Sydney University in Australia in 1976, and has been in companion animal practice since then. He founded the BARF diet concept, and has written several books on animal nutrition, including Give Your Dog a Bone and The BARF Diet. He is working on a range of e-books dealing with raw nutrition for dogs and cats. p. 10

Amy Snow and Nancy Zidonis are the authors of ACU-CAT: A Guide to Feline Acupressure, ACU-HORSE: A Guide to Equine Acupressure and ACU-DOG: A Guide to Canine Acupressure. They founded Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Resources, offering books, manuals, DVDs, apps, meridian charts, and consulting services. Contact 303-681-3030, animalacupressure.com or tallgrass@animalacupressure.com. p. 62

Veterinarian Dr. Christina Chambreau (ChristinaChambreau.com) has been teaching holistic approaches to health since she began using homeopathy in her practice 36 years ago. She has a Pet Health Coaching phone consulting practice where you can get help moving down the path to health for your animals. She is also the author of the Healthy Animal’s Journal series, including e-books for cats and dogs. p. 28

Tonya Wilhelm is a dog training and cat care specialist who promotes positive ways to prevent and manage behavior issues. One of the top ten dog trainers in the US, she has helped thousands build happy relationships with their dogs using humane, positive methods. She wrote Proactive Puppy Care; offers dog training classes; provides training and behavior services; and does workshops at pet expos (raisingyourpetsnaturally.com). p. 66

Veterinarian Dr. Jean Dodds received her veterinary degree in 1964 from the Ontario Veterinary College. In 1986, she established Hemopet, the first non-profit national blood bank program for animals. Dr. Dodds has been a member of many committees on hematology, animal models of human disease and veterinary medicine. She received the Holistic Veterinarian of the Year Award from the AHVMA in 1994. p. 14

Sally E. Bahner specializes in cat-related issues, specifically nutrition, holistic care and behavior. She has offered her services as a feline behavior and care consultant and gives classes on cat care. Sally is the resident cat behavior expert on Tracie Hotchner’s Cat Chat radio program, and a member of the Cat Writers’ Association and the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. p. 76

Veterinarian Dr. Janet Gordon Palm has been practicing integrative medicine since graduating from Kennesaw State University in 1981. Her multi-species practice, Animobility Integrative Veterinary Services, offers LLLT, VOM, craniosacral, osteopathy and more. Dr. Palm also uses concepts of respecting body language in all species she works with, resulting in an enhanced veterinary experience for all. p. 40

Ingrid Niesman MD, PhD, is the Director of the Electron Microscopy Facility at SDSU. Besides teaching and managing, she has an active research program designed to understand the molecular aspects of feline cognitive dysfunction. Ingrid is also a frequent contributor to feline-focused websites. p. 38

Veterinarian Dr. Jodie Gruenstern is a UW-Madison and Chi Institute graduate. She has practiced small animal and holistic medicine in Wisconsin and Arizona for over 35 years. Her focus is natural nutrition, Western and Chinese herbals, essential oils, and acupuncture. Dr. Jodie is the author of Live with Your Pet in Mind. She formulates natural pet products as owner of Dr. Jodie’s Natural Pets (drjodiesnaturalpets.com) and sees patients for holistic consultations and anesthesia-free teeth cleaning. p. 26 Veterinarian Dr. Katie Kangas graduated from the University of Wisconsin Veterinary College in 1993. She achieved her CVA certification at the Chi Institute in 2008, followed by additional training in Advanced Acupuncture, Food Therapy, Herbal Medicine and Veterinary Orthopedic Manipulation. Dr. Kangas owns Integrative Veterinary Care in San Diego, California. Her areas of special interest include nutrition/food medicine, dental health and pain management. p. 46 Veterinarian Dr. Judy Morgan graduated from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine in 1984. She later earned certification for Veterinary Orthopedic Manipulation, and certifications for Acupuncture and Food Therapy from the Chi Institute. Dr. Morgan is a holistic veterinarian certified in acupuncture, food therapy, and chiropractic care. She has authored four books on holistic pet care and feeding, and has over 700 educational videos on Facebook and YouTube (drjudymorgan.com). p. 68 Veterinarian Dr. William Ormston graduated from Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1988. He received certification from the AVCA and began using chiropractic to treat his animal patients. Jubilee Animal Health is a mobile practice in the Dallas Metroplex area where he cares for animals using mostly alternative methods. p. 52


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Amanda Ree is a certified Ayurvedic health practitioner, meditation teacher and yoga instructor. Through her childhood, she worked at her family’s Lake Tahoe pet store, where she developed an especially deep bond with dogs. In 2016, Amanda created her company Sama Dog: Wellbeing for Dogs + Their Humans which focuses on holistic care inspired by Ayurveda. p. 54 Victoria Stilwell is a world-renowned dog trainer, TV personality, author and public speaker, best known as the star of the hit TV series It's Me or the Dog. She is widely recognized as a leader in the field of animal behavior, and is the Editor-In-Chief of Positively (positively.com) and CEO of Victoria Stilwell Positively Dog Training (VSPDT), a global network of world-class positive reinforcement dog trainers. p. 34

Lori Wade is a journalist from Louisville. She is a content writer who has experience in small editions. Lori is currently engaged in news and conceptual articles on the pet care and veterinary industry. You can find her on LinkedIn. p. 58.

Krystn Janisse is a pet nutrition enthusiast and content writer for homesalive.ca. A lover of all animals, she enjoys sharing her passion for animal welfare with others. p. 20

Sandra Murphy lives in St Louis, Missouri. When she's not writing, she works as a pet sitter. p. 22


D gs Cats


A look at how nutrition impacts your dog or cat’s dental health, and why a raw diet may be the best way to prevent periodontal disease.

If you have a dog or cat with periodontal disease, you’re familiar with the signs. They include bleeding and painful gums; foul breath; tartar-covered teeth that loosen and may even come out; and receding gums with pus-filled pockets round the tooth roots. Needless to say, periodontal disease is very unpleasant — and very painful for your dog or cat. On the plus side, maintaining good dental health in your animal companion may be as easy as providing him with a diet of raw meat and bones.

PERIODONTAL DISEASE IS ENDEMIC Periodontal disease is one of the first degenerative disease processes to afflict today’s domestic cats and dogs; in fact, it often starts before the animals even hit puberty. By the age of five, around 85% of dogs and cats are exhibiting some degree of periodontal disease. This problem is reaching epidemic proportions in the canine and feline population throughout the


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Western world. And it is also a far more dangerous problem for our furry family members than it is for we humans. One of the first signs that a dog or cat has periodontal disease is a line of red, inflamed tissue along the gum-line. Unfortunately, this is not something most people notice. Over time, however, particularly when people fail to take suitable preventative measures, the signs of advancing disease become difficult to dismiss. These can include excessive drooling, pawing at the mouth, pain when eating, reluctance to chew, and food dropping from the mouth when eating. Facial swelling, a reluctance to be handled round the head, and even aggression may also occur. Periodontal disease starts insidiously as simple gingivitis, an inflammation of the gum-line with no damage to the supporting tooth structures. At this stage, basic hygiene

Your dog or cat’s oral


To best deal with any health problem, it is vital to understand how it arises in the first place. What are the inciting factors and what, if anything, can we do about them? This is the deceptively simple approach to dealing with every health problem we might encounter in ourselves or our animals. In the case of periodontal disease, however, we need to look a little more closely at the canine and feline mouth before we can gain that understanding.

measures (teeth cleaning) or even a change in diet may be enough to halt it in its tracks. But left untreated, the problem can become progressive, and to a degree, even irreversible, including actual loss (resorption) of the jawbone itself. Worse yet, periodontal disease can have long-term and debilitating consequences for other parts of the body, including the cardiovascular, respiratory, and immune systems, the kidneys, and less commonly, the reproductive system (the latter is less common only because most dogs and cats are spayed or neutered at a young age). The mouth has become a focus of infection that is quietly and insidiously spreading blood-borne bacterial infections around the body.

SO WHAT’S THE SOLUTION? Many experts will say that the only way to prevent periodontal disease dogs and cats is by daily cleaning their teeth with a toothbrush and specially-formulated toothpaste. But that isn’t the only answer. In fact, periodontal disease, as bad and as common as it is, does not have to be. It can be prevented, and (to a degree) even reversed and obliterated once established. The clues to the solution lie in some simple epidemiological observations. When I was a veterinary student in the early to mid-1970s, our lecturers stressed that we wouldn’t see a lot of animals with diseases of the periodontium if we practiced veterinary medicine here in Australia. Should we choose to practice in North America, we would find periodontal disease to be one of the most common problems we would encounter. After graduating as a veterinary surgeon, however, I witnessed a gradual increase in the incidence of periodontal disease in Australia, most particularly in the smaller dog breeds, with the Maltese terrier being a prime example. Now, we

The first thing we notice is the millions upon millions of bacteria that inhabit this space. This moist, warm, and foodfilled cavern with its enamel-covered teeth and its many nooks and crannies is the perfect environment for supporting this bacteria. And yes, they are supposed to be there; we have labeled this group of creatures the oral “microbiome”. These single-celled organisms have lived in harmony with creatures like dogs, cats, and humans since multicellular life began some 600 million years ago. And the key to this harmony (health) or disharmony (disease -- in this case, periodontal disease) is food. In a healthy mouth, the bacteria are principally air-loving species, the so-called gram-positive bacteria.* But when conditions are ripe for disharmony, air-hating, gram-negative bacterial species* tend to predominate. So what factors determine the makeup of the oral microbiome in our cats and dogs? When healthy bacteria predominate, they will stimulate a healthy immune response and ensure that the unhealthy bacteria do not thrive. If dental health is neglected, a biofilm of unhealthy bacteria begins to build up on the tooth enamel. As a film of plaque (made up of bacterial bodies and food debris) builds up, the increasingly anaerobic conditions begin to favor the presence of gram-negative and hostile bacteria. These bacteria love the lack of oxygen and begin to thrive, out-competing the healthy bacteria and taking over as the principal organisms within the oral microbiome. It is at this stage that the secretions of these unhealthy bacteria, together with the immune system’s over-reaction to their presence, begins its damaging effects on the tissues that support the teeth. Periodontal disease has begun. *When pathologists stain bacteria in order to see them under the microscope, they can use the gram stain procedure. Gram-negative bacteria (found principally at the back end of the animal…e.g. in the colon) stain red, while gram-positive bacteria (found principally at the front end… e.g. in the mouth), stain purple. Animal Wellness


What about advanced cases of


If your dog or cat’s periodontal problems are advanced, with over 25% of the supporting structures (including bone) damaged or lost, professional cleaning and suitable antibiotics became mandatory. But even at this stage, following veterinary intervention, the daily feeding of raw food will go a long way towards the repair and maintenance of your animal’s oral health. Raw meat and bones will ensure the re-introduction of a much healthier microbiome to his mouth. It will physically and chemically clean his teeth, and ensure an oral environment (including a robust immune system) that will keep periodontal disease at bay.

Australian vets find that periodontal disease is as common here as it is in the rest of the developed world — in all breeds of dogs and cats. The question is, why? The answer turns out to be deceptively simple. The increased incidence of periodontal disease in Australia parallels the decreased feeding of raw foods and bones in canine and feline populations. In the 70s, Australian dogs and cats gnawed on raw meaty bones and chunky pieces of raw meat. Tough and abrasive animal tissues had been a constant and normal part of their diets from time immemorial. In contrast, dogs and cats in the US and Canada (in the 70s and today) consume a diet that — for the most part — lacks these simple food items.

WHY RAW FOOD IS SO GOOD FOR DENTAL HEALTH How do raw meat and bones chart a healthy course for the canine and feline mouth? Their role is multifactorial. It involves optimal immune system functioning; the constant repopulation of the oral cavity with those organisms found in the raw food; the chemical nature


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of raw food; and the physical cleansing activities of meat, bone, cartilage, and tendons on tooth enamel and gums. In short, raw food creates the optimal conditions for healthy teeth and gums. This explains why the Australian cat and dog population was largely free of periodontal disease in the 1970s; it was because the food they ate fostered oral health. Meanwhile, this type of food was not part of the canine and feline diet in North America.

THE BOTTOM LINE The solution to periodontal disease in dogs and cats is therefore quite simple — all that’s required is a change in diet. The answer lies in the daily use of nature’s toothbrush — the humble raw, meaty bone with its attached cartilage and tendons, together with large chunks of tough, raw meat. Even if your dog or cat eats a dry or canned diet, the addition of raw food will help keep his teeth and gums healthy. We know this through our comparison of Australian and North American dogs and cats back in the seventies — and because a growing number of people are turning back to this time-honored and effective way to rid their dogs and cats of periodontal disease, with excellent results. You can learn more about raw feeding at drianbillinghurst.com.

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Rather than having your adult dog or cat vaccinated every year, consider these important factors and make an informed decision that will optimize his health and well-being.

D gs Cats

By W. Jean Dodds, DVM


We’ve been hearing a lot over the past decade or so about the risks associated with over-vaccination in dogs and cats. A growing number of animals parents now think twice before subjecting their four-legged friends to yearly boosters, once their animals have had their core vaccines as youngsters. For those who are still on the fence, this article explores important factors to consider when creating vaccination strategies for adult dogs and cats.

BENEFITS AND RISKS OF VACCINATION There is little doubt that the application of modern vaccine technology has permitted us to effectively protect companion animals (and people) against serious infectious diseases. However, vaccinations are increasingly recognized


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(albeit still rarely) as contributors to immune-mediated blood, skin, bowel, bone, and joint diseases, bone marrow and organ failure, central nervous system excitation, and behavioral aberrations. Genetic predisposition to these adverse events (termed vaccinosis) has also been documented. It must be recognized, however, that we have the luxury of expressing these concerns today only because the risk of disease has been effectively reduced by the widespread use of vaccination programs. Nevertheless, the accumulated evidence indicates that vaccination protocols should no longer be considered a “one size fits all” program.

can in dogs. Other cancers, such as leukemia, have been also been associated with vaccines.

In cats, while adverse vaccine reactions may be less commonly seen, aggressive tumors (fibrosarcomas) can occasionally arise at the site of vaccination, as they

In support of the size hypothesis, I have studied healthy, adult, small breed dogs who had not been vaccinated for at least three years. The dogs were given

VACCINE DOSAGE IN DOGS — SIZE MATTERS Dogs are currently all given the same quantity of vaccine, regardless of their size or breed. Not surprisingly, more adverse events have been documented in smaller dogs. Logically, toy and small dogs should require less vaccine than giant and large dogs in order to be fully immunized. Similarly, puppies (and kittens) should require less vaccine volume to immunize than adults do.

a half-dose of bivalent distemper and parvovirus vaccine, whereby all of them developed increased and sustained serum vaccine antibody titers. Presumably, this approach would apply also to puppies, and further research is needed.

VACCINATE WISELY, AND ONLY WHEN NEEDED There is no such thing as an “up to date” or “due” vaccination. When an adequate immune memory has already been established, there is little reason to administer booster vaccines, and it would be unwise to introduce unnecessary antigen, adjuvant, and other excipients, as well as preservatives, by doing so. Serum antibody titers can be measured triennially or more often if needed, to assess whether a given animal’s humoral immune response has fallen below levels of adequate immune memory. In that event, an appropriate vaccine booster can be administered. For legally required rabies vaccines, these alternative options are often limited.

Vaccination can provide an immune response that is similar in duration to that which follows a natural infection. In general, adaptive immunity to viruses develops earliest and is highly effective. Such antiviral immune responses often result in the development of sterile immunity and the duration of immunity (DOI) is often lifelong. In contrast, adaptive immunity to bacteria, fungi, or parasites develops more slowly. The DOI is generally short compared with most systemic viral infections. Sterile immunity to these infectious agents is less commonly engendered. Titers do not distinguish between immunity generated by vaccination and/or exposure to the disease, although the magnitude of immunity produced just by vaccination is usually lower. In adult dogs and cats, core vaccines should not be given more than every three years, and serological and challenge studies actually indicate that protection likely lasts much longer than that — from seven to nine years. With this in mind, measuring serum antibody titers is preferable to regular boosters.


VACCINOSIS The diagnosis of vaccinosis is an exclusionary one, as typically nothing will be found to explain the presenting symptoms. Our experience indicates that the animal should be given the oral homeopathic medicine, Thuja occidentalis (for all vaccines other than rabies), and homeopathic Lyssin, to alleviate the symptoms of vaccineinduced rabies miasm. Therapy often includes modest doses of steroids, initially for five to seven days and, if needed, in tapering doses over four to six weeks, to stop the inflammatory process and clinical symptoms. These animals should not receive further vaccine boosters; in the case of rabies vaccine, exemption should be sought on a case-by-case basis but may not be granted in some locales.



It’s important to understand that vaccination does not always equate to immunization. Vaccines may not always produce the needed or desired immune protective response, especially if the vaccine itself was inadequately prepared (very rare), but also if the animal is a genetic lowor non-responder to that vaccine (quite common in certain dog breeds and their families, such as Akitas, greyhounds, and Labrador retrievers, especially black Labs). In the latter case, the animal will be susceptible lifelong to the disease of concern, and revaccination will not help and could even be harmful.

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ALTERNATIVES TO CURRENT VACCINE PRACTICES Measuring serum antibody titers voiding unnecessary vaccines A or over-vaccinating eferring vaccination of sick or D febrile individuals Tailoring specific minimal vaccination protocols for dogs of breed types or families known to be at increased risk for vaccinosis, such as Weimaraners, great Danes (especially harlequins), Akitas, standard poodles, Vizslas, Old English sheepdogs, and any white or light-colored dogs, including mixed breeds (except in virulent disease outbreaks, orphans, or those deprived of colostrum) tarting vaccination series later, S such as at nine to ten weeks of age when the immune system is more robust atching your dog or cat’s W behavior and overall health after boosters voiding revaccination of A animals already experiencing a significant adverse event Avoiding revaccination of vaccinated, immunized geriatrics

COMPLIANCE OR RESISTANCE TO CURRENT VACCINE GUIDELINES The issues discussed above have been legitimately raised for over two decades, but why is this knowledge still considered controversial? Have veterinarians embraced the national and international policies on vaccination guidelines? Do dog and cat parents trust veterinarians to be up-to-date on these issues? Do they believe veterinarians have a conflict of interest if they derive income from annual booster vaccinations? While some veterinarians still tell their clients there is no scientific evidence linking vaccinations with adverse effects and serious illness, this fallacy confuses an impressionable client. On the other hand, vaccine and anti-vaccine zealots abound with hysteria and misinformation. Neither of these polarized views is helpful. Veterinary practitioners may simply believe what they originally learned about vaccines and are therefore less inclined to change or “fix” what is perceived to be unbroken. Annual vaccination has been the single most important reason why the majority of people bring their dogs and cats to the vet’s for an annual check-up or “wellness visit”. When combined with a failure to understand the principles of vaccinal immunity, it is not surprising that attempts to change vaccines and vaccination programs have created significant controversy. As stated by the American Animal Hospital Association’s 2003 guidelines: “No vaccine is always safe, no vaccine is always protective, and no vaccine is always indicated. Misunderstanding, misinformation, and the conservative nature of [the veterinary] profession have largely slowed adoption of protocols


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advocating decreased frequency of vaccination. Immunological memory provides durations of immunity for core infectious diseases that far exceed the traditional recommendations for annual vaccination. This is supported by a growing body of veterinary information as well as well-developed epidemiological vigilance in human medicine that indicates immunity induced by vaccination is extremely long lasting and, in most cases, lifelong.” These statements were groundbreaking at the time, and still apply today.

VACCINES SHOULD BE INDIVIDUALIZED TO EACH PATIENT “Vaccination should be just one part of a holistic preventive healthcare program for pets that is most simply delivered within the framework of an annual health check consultation,” said the late Professor Michael J. Day. “Vaccination is an act of veterinary science that should be considered as individualized medicine, tailored for the needs of the individual pet, and delivered as one part of a preventive medicine program in an annual health check visit.” Before vaccination, therefore, it’s important to consider your dog or cat’s individual risk of exposure to the disease in question, along with your geographical location, and lifestyle factors. While vaccines have traditionally been a regular part of every dog and cat’s annual wellness check, things are changing. The health risks of overvaccination, the growing use of titer testing, and studies demonstrating vaccine durations of immunity lasting seven to nine years, are prompting more people to reconsider yearly boosters and work with integrative or holistic veterinarians to create vaccine programs tailored to the needs of their individual dogs and cats.

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CREDITS DOG FOR HEALING A Florida teen has become famous on Tik Tok for sharing

O. Photo courtesy of Helge

videos of how his bond with his dog has helped him battle Tourette Syndrome. Videos of 16-year-old Shane Koch and his dog Callum, dancing and cuddling together, have attracted over one million followers.

helped him manage his

The first two genius dogs the researchers have identified are Rico, a border collie from Spain, and Whiskey, a border collie from Norway. Thanks to a worldwide search with the help of social media, four more genius dogs have been identified and Shany and her researchers are eager to find more to further their study on the minds of these extraordinary canines.

sounds or repetitive movements, often called “tics”. These

Tourette’s. “He notices when I do the tics, and he’ll nudge me,” Shane says. “He can literally sense when I do those tics, and as I feel it coming, a lot of the stress will go away.”

Tourette Syndrome is a disorder that causes unwanted tics can come in the form of repetitive eye-blinking or shoulder-shrugging, or of blurting out unusual sounds or offensive words. Before Callum came into his life, Shane says he couldn’t control his tics and his illness caused him to be bullied and isolated. “I was made fun of by teachers and students, and sometimes I would get in trouble,” he says. But since he met Callum, he says his condition has become much more manageable.




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Visit their Tik Tok page “Callumtheridgy”.

Photo: @shanekochofficial

Shane’s dog, Callum, has

Do you think your dog has more brains than average? You could be right. Researchers in Budapest, Hungary have discovered that some dogs with a rare level of intelligence are able to learn up to six new words in the span of one week. As part of their research, dubbed the Genius Dog Challenge, manager Shany Dror and her colleagues are conducting real-time livestreams on Facebook and Youtube, allowing viewers to experience trials in which a group of exceptionally intelligent dogs identify and retrieve toys based on names they have recently learned.

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Create an indoor obstacle course for your dog! By Krystn Janisse

When winter weather drives you indoors, it’s important to find ways to keep your dog occupied and active. Entertain your canine companion by building your own indoor dog obstacle course.

For many active and high energy dogs, spending the day inside can be boring. Typical indoor activities might not be engaging enough to keep your pup happy. It’s time to get creative and use objects in your home to make a new and exciting game you can both enjoy — a dog obstacle course!

Tunnel All it takes is a few dining chairs and a large blanket. Line up two rows of chairs back-to-back. Leave enough space in the middle of the rows for your dog to safely run between. If you want to make it a little more realistic, take a large blanket and drape it over the chairs so it creates a darker tunnel for your dog to run through. Remember to have a tasty reward waiting for him at the other end.


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crafty indoor obstacles for dogs

Building an indoor obstacle course for your pup doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. Check out these simple tips to turn your home into a fun play space for your dog.

Zig Zag Hurdles

Grab a small foot stool for your dog to leap. Bigger dogs should be capable of clearing it with no problem, but smaller breeds should be more cautious. Teach them to jump on the stool and then down the other side.

The zig zag obstacle is an excellent training exercise for dogs. Set up a row of small obstacles on the floor, like boxes, chairs, or even shoes. The goal is to get your dog to zig zag through the obstacles all the way down the line. This one is best taught using a “follow the leader” technique. Encourage your dog to follow you through the zig zag. Give him extra incentive with some tasty snacks if he doesn’t seem interested.

Stairs Teaching your dog to crawl is a great exercise. You’ll need a low table, like a coffee table, that your dog can comfortably fit under. Encourage your dog to crawl on his belly under the table from one end to the other. This obstacle is better suited to small and medium-sized breeds, but depending on the height of your table, a larger breed may enjoy this game too.

Illustrations courtesy of Jessica Hong

Army crawl

Stairs are a built-in obstacle for your dog. Having him run the stairs a few times will get his blood pumping and intensify the obstacle course. This works best on carpeted stairs. Smooth materials can be slippery, and you want to make sure your dog doesn’t get injured while playing.

Put it all together

Now that you have a few basic ideas, it’s time to put them all together into a full indoor canine obstacle course. The possibilities are endless, so get creative! Remember to change up the obstacle course occasionally to keep your dog from getting bored.

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Pet theft

D gs Cats

By Sandra Murphy

Pet theft is a serious problem and the pandemic has made it worse. Luckily, there’s lots you can do to protect your dog or cat from being stolen.

While it’s not something we like to think about, pet theft is a growing problem in both the US and Canada. According to the Animal Legal Defense Fund, an estimated two million companion animals are stolen each year in the US alone. And thanks to the pandemic, pet theft is becoming increasingly common. People are adopting and buying dogs and cats in record numbers to help alleviate stress, loneliness and isolation. Meanwhile, desperate economic times are driving others to turn to theft, taking advantage of the demand for companion animals by stealing them and selling them for their own profit. You might not think it’s something you need to worry about, but it’s always


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better to be safe than sorry. This article offers valuable tips to prevent your own dog or cat from becoming a victim of theft.

WHICH ANIMALS ARE TARGETED THE MOST? Purebreds, small dogs, and cats are in high demand for apartment and city dwellers, while puppies and kittens are popular with families, so these animals are stolen more often. Some dogs are even stolen to order. Cats most at risk are the easily recognizable breeds such as Siamese, Sphynx, and long-haired breeds like ragdolls or Maine coons. The American Kennel Club reports that the dog breeds

most apt to be stolen are Siberian huskies for their striking looks; friendly Labradors; toy and mini poodles, Shih tzus, Yorkshire terriers, and Maltese for their size; German shepherds (mostly stolen as puppies), bulldogs (since winning Best in Show in 2019), and French bulldogs for their charm.

DOES ID PROTECT AGAINST THEFT? Not really. While ID for your dog or cat is certainly important, it won’t necessarily prevent him from being stolen. Collar tags and GPS devices can be removed, and microchips only work if they’re scanned. If a thief says he’s selling his mother’s dog, a previous chip won’t raise an alarm.

This doesn’t mean you should forget about providing your dog or cat with identification — it’s still vital to finding your animal if he ever wanders away or gets lost on his own. (For more about ID, see “The best ID options for your dog” in AW V22I6).

TOP 10 TIPS FOR PREVENTING PET THEFT 1. Don’t leave your dog alone in the yard, even if it’s fenced in. “Dogs are most vulnerable in the front or side yard,” adds Daniel Caughill, co-founder of The Dog Tale. “The easiest opportunity to steal a dog is while their person is indoors. You may be able to keep an eye

on him through the window, but thieves can pull up, grab your dog, and drive off in a matter of seconds.” 2. Put padlocks on the gate. 3. Teach your dog not to jump up to be petted over the fence. 4. Don’t let either your dog or cat roam at large. 5. Keep your cat indoors unless you have an enclosure or can train him to walk on a harness and leash. Keep enclosure doors locked, and be sure to supervise your cat. Never tether him outside alone on a lead.

What should you do if your animal is stolen? If you’re ever unfortunate enough to have your dog or cat stolen, follow these steps: • File a police report. •D istribute flyers. •P ost current photos on social media. •C heck “for sale” ads, as your animal is apt to be resold. •K now his microchip number as proof he’s yours. •C heck with rescues, shelters, and neighborhood email lists to see if other thefts have occurred.

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Are there any laws against pet theft? “Most states view the stealing of a dog as an insignificant crime,” says David Reischer, Esquire, New York Attorney and CEO of LegalAdvice.com. “Even though people consider their animals a member of the family, the law views stealing a dog or cat as theft of personal property, meaning it’s a mere larceny, penalized the same as stealing jewelry or other private possessions. Kidnapping a person is a serious criminal offense but the law simply does not view taking a dog or cat as a comparable crime. In the majority of states, it’s a misdemeanor, and penalties include relatively minuscule fines and little to no jail time. New York, however, classifies theft of a dog as a felony punishable by up to six months in jail.” In fact, only 15 states include animal theft in their criminal code: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma. Rhode Island, Virginia, Texas, Washington, and West Virginia. California and Louisiana base penalties on the monetary value of the stolen animals. In Louisiana, for example, if the dog is worth $500 or more, the thief can go to jail for up to ten years. If the dog is worth less than $500, fines and less jail time are applicable. Virginia, meanwhile, classifies the theft of a dog as a Class 5 felony, punishable by up to ten years in jail. Dognapping is also a felony in Oklahoma, and is punishable with a jail sentence of six months to three years, plus a fine that’s triple the value of the dog. Mississippi also classifies theft as a felony with jail time of up to six months and/or a fine up to $500.


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opportunistic snatch-and-grab types . Most thieves are

A break-in might happen for a “high value” animal, but is less likely.

6. When walking your dog, vary your routes and walk times. It’s not only safer — it’s also more interesting for both of you! 7. Take notice if someone watches to see where you live, asks too many questions about your dog (e.g. is she spayed, purebred, did she cost a lot?), or wants to make friends with her.

CEO of Doctor Sniffs Bed Bug Dogs. “People think they’ll only be inside for a minute but the line could be long or they see someone they know and stop to say hi. It’s risky because it would only take a moment for a thief to untie the dog’s leash and walk away with him.”

8. Say no if someone offers to give your dog a treat. This is also a good idea for nutritional reasons.

10. This should go without saying, but don’t leave your dog in the car, even for a few minutes. Not only is it dangerous in warm weather, but it gives a thief the opportunity to pop the lock, grab the pup, and be gone before anyone notices.

9. If you’re doing errands while walking your dog, never leave him tied outside a store while you’re in shopping. “I see dogs tied outside businesses when I’m walking my scent detection dogs,” says Diana Ludwiczak,

Protecting your dog or cat from theft simply means being vigilant. Never leave him unsupervised outdoors or in your vehicle, and pay attention to any inner voice that tells you when something’s just not right. Thieves are smart… but you can be smarter!

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HOW DISINFECTANT AND SANITIZER USE MAY BE AFFECTING OUR ANIMALS D gs Cats During the pandemic, many of us have been spending a lot of extra time disinfecting and sanitizing our homes and hands to help protect our families from the COVID-19 virus. Is this additional chemical exposure having an adverse effect on our dogs and cats? By Jodie Gruenstern, DVM, CVA

For almost a year now, many of us have been using extra disinfectant and sanitizer in our homes and on our hands in order to help keep the COVID-19 virus at bay. But does this also mean we’re exposing our dogs and cats to an extra burden of toxic residues? Our animal companions do a lot of sniffing and licking as they go about their days, and studies show that dogs and especially cats have as high or even higher levels of toxic chemicals in their blood than their human counterparts in the same home. What alternative choices could you make to keep your entire family safe — both human and animal?

WHAT ARE SANITIZERS AND DISINFECTANTS ACTUALLY MADE OF? Household disinfectants Quaternary ammonium compounds are the primary chemical used in household


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disinfectants such as Lysol. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) grades Lysol Disinfectant Spray, Crisp Linen with an “F”, adding that the “top scoring factors” are the “potential for developmental/endocrine/reproductive effects, acute aquatic toxicity, and respiratory effects.” Many animal parents spray these disinfectants into the air, and onto countertops, doorknobs, and trash cans. Versions of these products are used in mop buckets and toilet bowls. So it’s easy to envision how our dogs and cats can get these chemicals on their paws and into their mouths. I have witnessed a rise in the use of allergy medications such as Apoquel and Cytopoint during the pandemic. How many of the “allergies” that animals are being diagnosed with are actually lung or skin irritations caused by the

use of chemicals such those found in disinfectants? Hand sanitizers In June 2020, researchers reported over 9,000 alcoholic hand sanitizer exposure cases in children, and recognized that even a small amount of alcohol can cause alcohol poisoning with symptoms of confusion, vomiting, drowsiness, and even respiratory arrest and death. Hand sanitizer usage has also actually increased antimicrobial resistance and the risk of viral disease. Unfortunately, the veterinary field rarely associates exposures such as these with problems in dogs and cats, but it’s certain that our animals are at as much risk as our children. Some brands of hand sanitizers, along with homemade versions, contain a toxic version of alcohol called methanol. Despite expert recommendations against doing so, many people are making their

own hand sanitizers. If you are one of them, be sure to choose a safe resource for which ingredients to use. Methanol must be avoided. Possibly of greater concern than the ingestion of a toxic hand sanitizer is the increased susceptibility to resistant infections in environments where strong antibacterials are used repeatedly, leading to the development of “super bugs” such as MRSA or Clostridium difficile. This problem has been demonstrated in facilities where therapy dogs have contracted these organisms from resident patients in nursing facilities. Triclosan used to be found in 75% of liquid hand soaps and some hand sanitizers. Triclosan is an endocrine disruptor and interferes with thyroid hormone. Overuse promotes antibiotic resistance, leading to the development of superbugs and untreatable infections, such as MRSA. Recently, triclosan has been banned from most, though not all, applications. However, we must deal with residues in the environment and watch for potentially toxic triclosan replacements in the marketplace.

The natural constituents in clove oil have been shown to kill bacteria and viruses. • Wash hands — and paws — frequently: Just use natural soap and water! In 2005, an advisory panel to the FDA stated there is no evidence that antibacterial products are more effective than regular soap and water!

• Avoid toxic purchases: Read ingredient labels where provided, and visit websites for more information about toxins (e.g. ewg.org).

• Replace disinfectants and sanitizers with safer alternatives: For example, use high quality therapeutic-grade essential oils. The natural constituents in clove oil have been shown to kill bacteria and viruses. It has anti-cancer properties and in appropriate dosages is even safe when ingested. Clove can be used topically and can have positive effects on the respiratory tract. It is just one example of many essential oils or oil blends that can be used as safe and effective alternatives to the toxic chemicals that are currently being overused and are contributing to the pollution in our world.

• Decrease dust: Vacuum and wet mop! Use steam cleaners. Clean your air duct systems.

• Follow public health guidelines for your area: You can help protect yourself, and reduce your need for

Remember, EPA-approved products, cleansers, sanitizers, soaps, shampoos, etc. do not need to have their ingredients listed on product labels. In fact, many are patent protected. Avoid brands that are not transparent with their ingredient lists.


constant disinfecting and sanitizing, by continuing to follow public health recommendations for your municipality, state and/or province. In spite of the pandemic fatigue we are all experiencing now, try to stay home as much as possible, except for work, school, groceries, or other essential tasks; limit your personal contacts, especially when it comes to guests coming into your home; and wear a mask while practicing social distancing when you are out and about. The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically increased our use of disinfectants and sanitizers in our homes, yet many of us have not taken into consideration how it might be affecting our dogs and cats. By taking alternative steps to keep your family and home virus-free, you can cut down on the use of these chemicals and help your dog or cat stay healthy.


cfpub.epa.gov/si/si_public_record_ report.cfm?dirEntryId=333993&Lab =NHEERL ewg.org/guides/cleaners/2639LYSOLDisinfectantSprayCrispLinen/ medlineplus.gov/ency/ article/000816.htm ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/ PMC3819475/ ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/ PMC6558202/ ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/ PMC7320712/ pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih. gov/21500827/ pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih. gov/23403100/ sciencenotes.org/easy-andeffective-homemade-hand-sanitizerrecipe/ sourcewatch.org/index.php/ Triclosan

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By Christina Chambreau, DVM, CVH

Discover how homeopathy can help treat dental disease in your canine or feline companion.


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The health of your dog or cat’s teeth and gums is vital to his quality of life. The pain and discomfort caused by inflamed gums and bad teeth can make him miserable. The good news is that there are many ways to help alleviate dental problems, and protect the health of his teeth and gums. This article focuses on how carefully prescribed, individualized homeopathic remedies can be an effective solution to dental disease. The selection of a homeopathic medicine is based on the theory of “like cures like”. Remedies are chosen based on how they match the animal’s symptoms. When done correctly, a state of complete health can be regained. If you’re considering homeopathy for your dog or cat’s dental issues (or any other condition), it’s important to work with an experienced homeopathic veterinarian — there are 4,000 remedies, and if they are not used correctly, the symptoms may not resolve, or may return. Homeopathic remedies can be purchased at most health food and pet health stores, or bought online. The most common potency is a 30c. Ignore everything on the label except the name of the remedy and its potency.

DENTAL PROBLEMS AND MATCHING HOMEOPATHIC REMEDIES • Pain, bleeding, and after dental work: Aconitum napellus, Arnica montana, Arsenicum album, Belladonna, Hypericum, Ipecacuanha, Lachesis, Phosphorus, Staphysagria • Abscess: Calcarea carbonica, Hepar sulphuricum, Mercurius solubilis, Phosphorus, Silicea A tooth root abscess causes swelling of the cheek and is usually treated by removing the tooth, which is often a big

molar that needs major surgery. If an abscess has just been diagnosed and your dog or cat is not in too much pain, you could try one of the following remedies, or schedule a phone appointment with a veterinary homeopath. These medicines can also help with smaller abscesses that can be seen on the gums, or from an injury. • Gum disease — gingivitis, stomatitis: Aconite, Belladonna, Lachesis, Hepar sulphuricum, Lachesis, Mercurius solubilis, Phosphorus Gum problems usually indicate a fairly serious imbalance, so you may start with one of these medicines while scheduling an appointment with a veterinary homeopath. Well prescribed homeopathic medicines have allowed many cats to keep their teeth, even with severe stomatitis.

breaking a tooth on a rock, or coming home after surgery. Gums can be swollen. Pain is worse with cold food or drink. Worse at night and in cold, dry weather.

Arnica montana — First to give for any trauma, if there is no fear and terror. It can control bleeding, bruising, and pain in the mouth tissues. Animals needing Arnica (injury, broken tooth, sore gums, any pain) are so sensitive to pain that they do not want you to come near them. After a dose of Arnica, they may be easier to examine and treat.

As you can see, the same medicines can help different conditions. When they match the energetic pattern of the ill animal, they restore balance and allow self-healing. It’s important to realize that homeopathic remedies are selected for their general characteristics, not just for the specific medical condition — more on this below.

THE REMEDIES IN DETAIL Aconitum napellus — First to give if there is great fear, fever, anxiety, or shock. These states could be caused by an injury,

WHAT ABOUT TARTAR? While Fragaeria and Calcalus renalis are reputed to prevent tartar buildup, I have not seen much benefit. When you have been able to build health at a deep level, and are feeding a good dental diet, the tartar will actually dissolve on its own.

Arsenic album — Chosen for toothaches that are worse at night, especially between midnight and 2 A.M, and that are relieved by warm water. Your cat or dog may be restless, even when lying down. These animals are often more thirsty, especially for small sips of water. They usually seek heat. Belladonna — Pain is severe, burning and throbbing. It’s worse at night, worse on contact (as when chewing food or toys), and in the open air. Fever may be present. Hairless areas of the body, including Animal Wellness


PREVENTING DENTAL PROBLEMS AND IMPROVING OVERALL HEALTH • Feed a fresh food diet containing big enough chunks that your animal can sink his teeth into them. Raw bones are also excellent. (For more on how nutrition can influence your dog or cat’s dental health, turn to page 10.) • Use homeopathy or other modalities, under the guidance of a trained practitioner, to eliminate even the earliest warning signs of internal imbalance.

the mouth and gums, seem flushed and very red. Behavior may be excitable and even aggressive.

Ipecacuanha — For gushing bright red bleeding from the gums. Give this remedy on your way to the veterinary clinic.

Calcarea carbonica — Young dogs and cats often need this remedy. They are usually plump, round, sweet animals who can be very stubborn, sluggish, and phlegmatic. Cats may lick you when petted. A red flag that this medicine is needed is when these animals eat litter, dirt, or other indigestible substances. Wet weather makes them feel worse.

Lachesis — The blood is a dark, even purple color. Gums are swollen and have a dusky color. The animal feels worse in hot weather and hot rooms. The rabies vaccine can be the trigger for problems that will resolve with Lachesis. It is always good, when your dog or cat becomes ill in any way, to see if it started after a vaccine or drug treatment. Problems tend to be on the left side of the animal, or start on the left and then move to the right. Often, he will not want any collar or pressure on his neck and throat.

Hepar sulphuricum — These animals are very sensitive, so exhibit a lot of pain, and can be grouchy and snappish. They are very chilly.

• Have your dog or cat’s teeth and gums checked regularly by your veterinarian. • For better overall health, minimize toxins (pesticides, cleaners, vaccines, and other chemicals). • Discover what the best mental and physical exercise is for your cat or dog, and engage him in it every day for general well-being.


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Hypericum perforatum — Excellent for any problems in nerve-rich areas, including the teeth and gums. If your cat or dog acts as if he is experiencing a stinging or sharp pain, yet is fine when you touch and examine him, or if he is still painful after the Arnica, reach for Hypericum. If he has never shown an aversion to being touched or approached, you could start with Hypericum rather than Arnica.

Mercurius solubilis — Copious salivation is very common when this remedy is needed, as are really putrid odors of the mouth, saliva, and even feces or vomit. Lots of straining before, during, or after trying to defecate, even when stools are fairly normal. Animals needing Mercurius cannot tolerate temperatures that are too hot or too cold.

Phosphorus — Excellent for stopping bleeding, especially when the blood is bright red. This could occur after dental surgery, or because the animal chewed too vigorously on a stick, or suffered another injury. Animals needing Phosphorus often love company, like to play, enjoy petting, are thirsty for cold water, and may be sensitive to noises. The anus is often gaping open.

Staphysagria — If incisions were made during dentistry, or there was an injury such as a cut, note if there has been a behavior change in the animal. In people, this remedy is often needed for pain and nervousness after a tooth extraction.

ADMINISTERING HOMEOPATHIC MEDICINE If you find a homeopathic medicine in this article (or from other sources) that seems to match your dog or cat’s individual traits, you can use any potency available until you are able to consult with a homeopathic veternary. The commonly-available 30c may

Pulsatilla — Cold water or ice cubes seem to relieve gum pain in these animals, and they feel better in general in cold, open air. They are super clingy, need a lot of reassurance, and the pain is lessened when cuddled. They stop wanting to drink water, or drink a lot less. If you see discharge from an abscess it would be a creamy color with no odor.

Homeopathy, along with basic holistic health approaches, can help with acute dental problems, and ease recovery from dental work. Most exciting is that when prescribed by a trained homeopathic vet, this modality can improve health to the point where your cat or dog has super healthy teeth, rarely becomes ill in other ways, and lives a long life.

come in small sugar pellets. Put one to three pellets into ½ cup of water in a small jar or dropper bottle. Shake it hard ten times, then gently lift up the animal’s lip and squirt the mixture onto the gums or the front of the mouth. If his mouth is so painful that it cannot be touched, you can put a few drops into a little cream cheese, cottage cheese, or a bit of water or broth to be licked up. Observe any changes. The best result is an improvement in

Silicea — Abscesses around the roots of the teeth and gums often need Silicea. The pain is worse from drinking cold water. These animals are often timid or fearful, and problems can arise after vaccination. Silicea is often needed for chronic problems that just are not completely healing. It can help expel splinters or plant awns from gums (or other areas).

energy, behavior, and general well-being. When you notice that improvement waning, repeat the dose after shaking the mixture again. If nothing has changed after 30 minutes, give a second, then a third dose. If there is still no improvement, see if one of the other medicines fits better, or seek professional help from your vet.

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What we love: The products are free of additives and artificial preservatives, and contain no gluten or added sugar.

Natural dental products for dogs and cats For natural and effective products to support your dog or cat’s dental health, look no further than Swedencare USA. Their ProDen PlaqueOff® Dental Bones and Powder are made with 100% natural and sustainably harvested sea kelp. The bones come in several natural flavors, including Chicken, Turkey, and Veggie.


Reach for the horizon! What we love: They bake and dehydrate every treat to lock in flavor and freshness without preservatives.

Handcrafted with loving care

If you want to boost your dog’s nutrition, try Horizon Pet Nutrition’s Legacy line. It combines the high meat content of the ancestral carnivore diet with a convenient kibble format. Packed with beneficial animal proteins such as salmon, chicken and turkey, along with fresh fruits and vegetables, botanicals, and more.


What we love:

Looking for a high quality treat option? Milly & Me’s natural treats are handcrafted in small batches using specificallychosen natural ingredients. They’re made from 100% real foods in 100 Mile House, British Columbia, Canada. Get 15% off all their natural treats by using code TREATS15!

Also contains antioxidants and immune system enhancers to help optimize wellness.


What we love: The online course accommodates all levels of participant, from animal parents to professionals.

Learn pet first aid Emergencies happen, and being able to respond quickly if your dog or cat needs immediate help can save his life. Walks 'N' Wags has been offering Pet First Aid courses since 2003. Their online course includes hands-on practice and multiple choice quizzes, and free email and phone support from a tutor.



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All-in-one carrier, bed, and car seat Many cats and dogs associate travel with negative experiences, such as trips to the vet. The Sleepypod mobile pet bed allows your animal to travel safely in the comfort of his own bed — and that reduces travel stress because it’s already a trusted part of his everyday life. Just zip on the lid and you’re both ready to go.


What we love:

What we love:

The beds are certified by the Center for Pet Safety for animals 15 pounds and under.

This product is gentle enough for kittens and puppies as well as adult animals.

Better oral health is one scoop away Dental disease can make your dog or cat miserable, and impact his overall health and quality of life. Give him the gift of oral health with a daily scoop of ProBiora Pet, an oral care probiotic specifically created to keep animals’ teeth and gums healthy, freshen breath, and whiten teeth.

Nix bugs with cedar oil


What we love:

Spring is on the horizon, and fleas, ticks and other pests will soon be making a reappearance. Goodwinol Shampoo contains cedar oil, a naturally-occurring insecticide. It helps alleviate itching, flaking and excessive scratching, and leaves coats shiny and lustrous.

It’s easy to use — just sprinkle on his food once a day.


What we love:

It’s also packed with prebiotics and antioxidants.

These supplements are special! Featuring a complete source of essential nutrients, paired with cutting-edge absorption technology, ALL-IN™ reinvents the canine supplement so you can go all in with your dog’s health! Natural and clinically proven, it promotes digestive, bone and joint, cellular, mental, cardiovascular, and immune health.


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By Victoria Stilwell

– IT’S ABOUT MORE THAN OBEDIENCE Dog training has undergone something of a revolution in the last number of years. People used to think it was only about teaching dogs obedience commands, usually with the use of heavyhanded punishment-based techniques. But these methods have largely been overtaken by a more science-based positive training approach that encourages dogs to learn through discovery, play, and reward. Not only is this latter approach more effective, it also encourages cooperation based on mutual trust rather than pain, fear, and intimidation. Here’s how to train your own dog using positive, reward-based methods.

SIT The sit cue is often one of the first people want to teach their dogs. But before you start, ask yourself why you are teaching your dog this cue. Is it so you can control him in different environments? Is it a safety cue you can use in busy areas? Will it encourage him to listen? If your answer is “all of the above” you’re ready to start. You should never push your dog into a sit — it’s incredibly easy to do without the use of force. Teach your dog to sit quickly and painlessly by following these easy steps:

q Hold a treat or toy near his nose and wait for him to figure out how he is going to get it out of your hand. Some dogs will lick or paw at the treat, but don’t give it to him until he puts his behind on the floor.

w When your dog finally works out that he’ll get the reward when his behind hits the floor, give him the treat or toy and praise him.


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e Repeat this process until your dog is sitting reliably, then add the word “sit” as he is in the process of sitting, so he begins to associate the word with the action.

r When he is sitting repeatedly, start saying the word “sit” as you present the treat or toy to him. He will gradually associate the word with the action and respond to your vocal cue.

DOWN This is another basic cue that can be valuable for impulse control and for encouraging your dog to settle in any situation. There is never any need to force your dog into a down — it can (and should) be taught in a completely force-free way.

q Use a treat or toy and ask your dog to sit. w Place your hand, with the reward in it, palm down on the floor. Let your dog sniff it, but do not let her have the treat or toy. Do not give a cue yet, or say anything at all.

e Your dog will try and work out how she is going to get the reward from your hand. As soon as she lies down on her belly, give her the reward and praise her.

r Repeat the same exercise several times: wait for the action, catch it, give her the reward, and praise her.

t The next step is to put in the vocal cue and hand signal. As your dog is in the act of lying down, say “down” and lower your hand, palm down, onto the floor. Repeat this, but

not so many times that your dog gets bored. If you have a large dog, the action of having to lie down and get up again multiple times might be too much for her, so go easy.

y Finally, ask your dog to “down” using the vocal and hand signal before she has even started to lie down.

u Release your dog by saying “okay” when you want her to get up again.

RECALL Having a dog that comes when called is a critical part of the teaching process. This is one of the most important cues you can teach your dog. Do not make the mistake of using a shock collar for recall training. These devices can cause your dog extreme physical and emotional distress. A really reliable recall is taught in stages. If you take this training slowly and don’t rush your dog through the process, you’ll find that he’ll want to come to you. Stage 1: Catching the behavior • Start in a distraction-free indoor environment so your dog can focus only on you. • Whenever he comes to you on his own, wait until he is a couple of feet away, then say his name and the word “come”. • When he gets to you, praise him as much as possible. • With this exercise, your dog will learn that coming to you is a really good thing. After a while, you can lengthen the distance between the two of you and start using the word “come” when he is approaching you from further away. • Coming to you should always be rewarded, whatever the circumstance and no matter how long it took your dog to respond. • Motivate your dog to come by acting excited, running away from him, waving a toy, or having delicious food for him when he gets to you. This will show him that coming back to you the best thing he can do. Stage 2: Solidifying the cue through play • Make sure you play this game with another person your dog is comfortable with. • Start the game in a quiet indoor environment so it is easy for your dog to focus on you. • Hold your dog back while the other person calls him excitedly. Try not to use his name or the cue word, but talk Animal Wellness


CHANGE YOUR TRAINING MINDSET When teaching your dog basic compliance or “obedience”, think less about him “obeying” you, and more about teaching him the skills he will need to live successfully in his environment. Whether your dog is a puppy or a senior, it’s never too late to teach these skills, including basic cues that will help build a positive training foundation. You’ll notice that many of the methods outlined in this article involve letting your dog figure out what you want from him. It’s a more organic way of teaching; it encourages him to think rather than having you impose your will on him, or physically manipulate him into different positions. Your dog will learn faster and be more focused on you.

excitedly to “gee” him up. Do not release him until the person calls his name, followed by the cue word “come”. • When the cue word is given, release your dog and let him run to the person calling him. As soon as he gets there, the person should praise and reward him with a game of tug or a food reward. • When your dog has had his reward, have the other person hold him back as you call him, then release him as you say his name followed by the “come” cue word. When he comes to you, reward him with another game of tug or a treat. • Repeat this game back and forth, but only do a few repetitions so your dog does not get bored or too tired. Keeping it fresh means the game is always fun to play. Stage 3: Adding vocal cue and hand signal • Now that your dog knows what “come” means, you can use the cue word to call him to you while adding a hand signal. Hand signals are always good to build with vocal cues — this way, even if your dog can’t hear you, he will understand what the hand signal means. This is important if your dog is some distance away from you. • Start in a quiet indoor environment. Walk away from your dog and call his name followed by the cue word and a hand signal. Praise and reward him when he comes to you. • Start increasing the distance you call him from, and praise him for compliance. If he does not respond, go back to the previous shorter distance and repeat. • Only practice this cue for a few minutes so your dog does not get bored. Again, the secret to success is to always keep it fun, exciting and fresh. • When your dog recognizes the hand signal, try calling his name and using the hand signal by itself, without the vocal cue. You will then be able to use a combination of the vocal cue only, the hand signal only or the two together. • Now that your dog knows what the “come” cue word means, you can start to call him from different rooms or other areas where he cannot see you. This will encourage him to respond even when you are out of sight. Stage 4: Taking it outside • Now your dog is consistently coming to you in a distraction-free indoor environment, you can proof your recall cue by taking it outside. • Practice the recall in your yard and then gradually build up to the point where you can use it in a park or similar environment. • The ultimate test is to use the recall when your dog is engaged in a different activity. Wait for a lull in that activity, and then call your dog to you. Praise his decision to comply. Training your dog does not have to be costly or intense, and the more enjoyable it is for both of you, the better the results will be.


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Not all dogs are food-motivated, which can make treat training ineffective. Here’s how to use toys as training rewards instead. This may be hard to believe, but not all dogs are motivated by food — and that's okay. Food is not the only reward in the world. This article is aimed at dogs who are unmotivated by treat-free training, but the tips that follow can be a good change of routine for any dog — including those that find food too exciting and can’t focus on learning when there’s the slightest possibility of treats.

BEFORE YOU START The first step is to determine if your dog really isn’t food-motivated or if he’s simply full and not interested in eating at the moment. I often train my dogs using their dinners. This is a fun way to keep them lean and fit without giving them an additional meal’s worth of treats in between times. Before dinner, when your dog is hungry, try training him with a few pieces of his food and see if his motivation level spikes a bit. If so, that's great: you can work on your training with his dinnertime meals. If your dog is truly food-unmotivated, you can confirm it by using a higher-value food. If I had a choice between pasta and

a cracker, I’m going to hold out for pasta (you probably would too). Similarly, if you’re using dry, hard treats for training, try one with more scent and flavor.

with the Frisbee and let him play for a minute or two. If that toy isn’t deemed a sufficiently exciting reward, step it up to next level; in this case, the hedgehog toy.


Remember that you can make his toys more exciting by squeaking and moving them around, thereby increasing his drive for them. And when you’re done, hide the toys to keep them extra special for the next training session.

Still not interested in food? That’s okay! Think about your dog’s toys and arrange them in order of excitement level. For example, a ball provides a good time, a Frisbee offers off-the-wall excitement…but his squeaky hedgehog toy tops them all. We can make a list of the joy level each of these toys brings in this example, from lowest to highest: • Ball • Frisbee • Hedgehog toy • A new toy that only comes out at training time! We know the ball is lowest on the “joy list”. So get out the Frisbee, hide it behind you, and start with a simple cue such as “sit”; but instead of rewarding your dog with food when he sits, reward him

If you have a dog that runs away with his toys, keep him on a long leash during training to keep him near you. A good choice is Sleepypod’s Power Leash. As you work on this, you’ll discover a range of other rewards your dog enjoys besides treats, and this will lead to new ways of working together. Enjoy your training adventures!

Nicole Ellis is a pet lifestyle expert, certified professional dog trainer and co-author of Working Like a Dog. She has appeared on The Today Show, NBC, Fox and MSN as well as Mashable, Pet360, Travel+Leisure, Huffington Post and more. Nicole’s dogs, Maggie and Rossi, are animal actors and appear in campaigns for Shiseido, AT&T, Neiman Marcus, Target, Uber, Oh Joy!, iFetch, Jax & Bones, Benjamin Moore and more. Animal Wellness



Cats AND COVID-19 By Ingrid Niesman, MS, PhD

It’s true that cats can contract COVID-19. Let’s look at how, and what you can do to protect your own feline companion.

When I wrote my first article about cats and COVID-19 back in March of 2020, there were no confirmed cases. Since then, a number of felines, including large cats in zoos as well as domestic cats, have contracted the virus. So what does this mean to you as a cat parent? What should you watch for in your feline companion, and what do we need to do to keep our cats and ourselves safe? This article looks at the latest discoveries about COVID-19 in cats.

Cats can get COVID for the same reasons we do Early on, scientists determined that the virus binds to ACE2 and co-opts its function for entry into cells. ACE2 receptors line the noses, lungs, and guts of human and cats. Although there are small differences, feline and human ACE2 are essentially the same. What this means is that cats can get this disease the same way humans can. Airborne virus is breathed in, infects nasal cells, and disseminates throughout the body. Moreover, cats clean themselves extensively, opening up a second potential route of oral infection that would be rare in humans.

Do cats give the virus to each other? Several highlypublicized studies have demonstrated that,

in experimental settings, cats can infect other cats with the virus. However, the data is murky on cat-tocat transmission in COVID-19 positive households. Demonstrating this type of transmission is difficult since too many variables are involved, such as a cat’s preference for one family member, room, or resource. However, several groups are providing new data on the prevalence of positive cats in homes with COVID-19 cases. In general, the studies report limited transmission, although larger surveys may reveal more information in upcoming months. “While we have had no housecat swabs test positive for virus, we have preliminary data that some are antibody positive, but these positives are not correlated to serious disease in these animals,” says Tufts University researcher, Kaitlyn Sawatzki, PhD, who has been surveying cat-loving households in the New England area.

COVID-19 testing for cats Part of the reason our understanding of feline infections remains incomplete

While both humans and cats can transmit COVID-19 to other cats, there have been

no reports of a cat-to-human case. case


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Do existing health issues make COVID worse in cats?

Underlying health issues that may contribute to worsened clinical outcomes for cats are not known at this time. Worldwide, only three cats are known to have died from apparent COVID-19 symptoms to date. However, trends seen in human cases suggest the following factors may also accelerate or exacerbate the illness in cats:

is because of issues surrounding COVID-19 testing for cats. Few tests are approved for animal use. To obtain a test for a cat, approval from the state veterinarian is usually required. Costs add extra complexities, making the window of opportunity extremely narrow for detecting active cases. This means we are possibly underreporting the actual number of cases in cats. One thing is clear, though — if cats were presenting more routinely with COVID-19 symptoms, we would see increased testing and scientific concern, but we are not.

Commonsense precautions Keep in mind that for indoor cats, the risk of contracting COVID-19 is extremely low. • The best prevention is to keep your cat at home, and limit non-household people from interacting with him. • If you or someone in your household has suspected or confirmed COVID-19, limit or avoid interactions with your cat during the quarantine period. “Treat your cat as another member of your household if you are COVID positive and avoid close contact as much as possible,” says UC Davis veterinarian, Dr. Kate Hurley. “Alas, this is not the time to have him sleep in your bed or cuddle up with you.”

• Studies show that cats shed virus in their feces, albeit for only a short time after infection. So it’s important to keep areas clean and disinfected, especially in multi-cat households with communal litter boxes. Scoop litter regularly. Wear a mask and gloves. Double bag the scooped material; some litters are dusty and the particles can disperse into the air. If possible, have an air-purifying unit close by. • Last but far from least, be sure your cat enjoys a healthy lifestyle to help keep his immune system working well.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19 in cats? Sick cats are not always easy to recognize. Early signs of infection may be missed or ignored. If you or a family member has COVID-19, watch for lethargy, breathing issues, respiratory discharges, coughing, sneezing, and diarrhea in your cat. Report any symptoms to your veterinarian as soon as possible. A sick cat should be isolated for 14 days in a safe and comfortable place in your home.

Moving forward As the pandemic wears on, science will continue learning more about the COVID-19 virus in humans and other species, including cats. To keep abreast of new developments, look for the best scientifically-guided information. For

• Age • Obesity • History of repeated respiratory infections • Heart ailments • Undiagnosed viral or bacterial infections

example, the UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine program has a very detailed website devoted to COVID-19 support for both clinicians and the public. It offers practical advice for animal parents, fosters and adopters, along with a long list of web resources, including the most up to date CDC, AVMA and WSAVA guidelines (sheltermedicine.com/ library/resources/?r=animal-services-role-incovid-19-support-coronavirusesandpets).

Concerns among cat parents Back in May of 2020, University of Indiana veterinarian, Dr. Katharine Watson, conducted a survey looking at concerns about COVID-19 among animal parents. At the time, we were still in the early phases of the pandemic and anxiety was running high. According to Dr. Watson’s survey, 60% of veterinarians had clients who were worried about their animals contracting the virus. “In my own practice, and through informal conversations with other practices, it appears that people are now calming down about infections in their pets,” says Dr. Watson. “There is less worry about the virus — but people should still be vigilant about any abnormal respiratory or GI signs.” Animal Wellness





D gs Cats Seeing the veterinarian on a regular basis is a necessary part of being an animal parent. Recognizing and managing your dog or cat’s emotional state and primary needs can help take the stress out of vet visits.

By Janet Gordon Palm, DVM, CVCP

Dogs and cats experience varying “moods” or emotional states that can shift instantly in response to different circumstances or environments. If their primary emotional needs are not recognized and managed, stress levels increase. This is why so many dogs and cats become agitated or anxious at the vet’s office. Understanding more about your animal’s emotional state, and how it changes, can help you respond better to his primary needs in the moment, thereby reducing his stress.

YOUR ANIMAL’S NEEDS AND EMOTIONAL STATES Natural horsemanship clinicians Pat and Linda Parelli created a simple template of observation and intuition applied to horses


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and called it HorsenalityTM. As a student of animals all my life, I resonated with this concept and extrapolated to all species, including dogs and cats. I have termed this multi-species inclusion AnEmotionalityTM. Here’s how it works. The individual’s primary need at any time will vary, depending on his emotional state at that time.

• Environment • Spirit level (low, medium or high energy) An example of how needs and emotional states are connected can be seen in a stressed dog or cat that is fearful for his safety. During such a time, he will not be treat- or play-motivated, even if he loves these things under normal conditions.

An animal’s hierarchy of needs: • Safety • Comfort

• Play • Food

His emotional states depend on these four factors: • Genetics • Learned behaviors

LEFT BRAIN, RIGHT BRAIN…EXTROVERT OR INTROVERT? The ability to recognize an animal’s shift from confident to fearful, and to manage his needs, can be learned through an understanding of the following components.

See full size versions online at: https://animalwellnessmagazine.com/managing-emotional-states-dog-cat

Emotional components: •R ight Brain (RB): Emotional, sensitive, fearful, timid, insecure; searching for safety and leadership. Repetitive routine helps animal feel confident. • Left Brain (LB): Confident, dominant, naughty, stubborn, clever; makes own rules if you don’t provide them; challenges your leadership. Action components: •E xtrovert (E): Expends energy; needs to MOVE his feet before he can think it through. • I ntrovert (I): Conserves energy; needs time to THINK before he can move or react. Since these “moods” can shift instantly, recognizing when to incorporate strategies that answer the animal’s emotional currency at the time reduces stress as he feels his primary needs at the moment are being managed. Although an animal may possess primarily one or two traits (introvert or extrovert, right or left brained), different situations and environments, such as a visit to the vet, can allow other traits to show up. Addressing the primary needs of each



Primary need

Left Brain Introvert (LBI)

Confident, stubborn, resistant to movement until enough motivation. Food rewards work.

“What’s in it for me?”

Right Brain Extrovert (RBE)

Fears for safety, needs to run, bolt, attack. Feels trapped when restrained. Food rewards are not accepted until safety managed.

“Focus me!”

Right Brain Introvert (RBI)

Fears for safety, comfort, prefers not to move, hides from eye contact. Seeks close contact. Food rewards not accepted until safety managed.

“Be gentle with me”

Left Brain Extrovert (LBE )

Confident, outgoing, needs activity, welcomes eye contact which can escalate the behavior. Play, tricks, food rewards gladly accepted.

“Play with me!”

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See full size versions online at: https://animalwellnessmagazine.com/managing-emotional-states-dog-cat

dog or cat will help manage the emotions and result in stress reduction.

CLINICAL EXAMPLES RBE (Safety) Think of the fear-biting German shepherd or fractious cat. This may also include animals that are completely left brained at home, but are over-stimulated to right brain tendencies by their need to feel safe in a new environment. These animals are not treat-motivated until they can be encouraged to access their left brain thinking. Decreasing pressure by incorporating approach and retreat (with lots of retreat) and little to no eye contact would be beneficial. For example, the fear-biting German shepherd may need to be ignored initially while you’re conversing with the vet, so you can approach the intended evaluation in stages. RBI: (Comfort) These animals appear to be calm, but can explode unpredictably once their threshold is met. They can be the silent sufferers who hate conflict, become catatonic, hide, and allow their stress cortisol levels to wreak havoc on their well-being. Taking time with these animals and proceeding slowly and gently is helpful. Incorporate lots of approach and retreat. Another example is the anxious dog that can’t look at you. Direct eye contact is a form of pressure in this emotional state. Allow time for the dog to relax. If he is ignored for a while, he may become curious and turn to sniff you. This is your permission to engage. LBE: (Play) Playful, energetic and naughty! Labs, border collies, terriers, fly ball and agility stars, and hunting dogs are examples. These dogs usually love coming to the clinic. Cats that investigate all cupboards and surfaces, and go up to greet the vet, fit this profile. Motivation in the exam room can include asking these animals to perform a trick, offering a toy, or allowing them to “work” for a treat reward. LBI: (Incentive) Stubborn, argumentative, refusing to budge, and can be a bully. Picture the


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cat lying on his chest and stomach on the exam table with his paws turned in, and who complains when being picked up. Or the dog that prefers to sit or lie where he can’t be reached, or refuses to be led or come when called. These animals can usually be motivated with treat rewards. Remember that dogs and cats don’t understand that veterinary checkups are for their own health and well-being. Gaining an understanding of your animal’s state of mind during a vet visit (or any other stressful situation), as well as what motivates him, and then attending to his primary needs, results in a more positive and less stressful experience for everyone.

From the NASC Protect your dog or cat’s vision with checkups

and antioxidant support By Terri McCalla, MS, DACVO and Carmen Colitz, PhD, DACVO

As dogs and cats age, they may experience some of the same vision concerns we do. But because these animals are good at compensating for vision loss, you may not notice early on that their vision is changing. Their senses of hearing and smell are thousands of times better than ours, which means they have a very good ability to adapt to vision loss. In fact, dogs and cats tend to get around fairly well until they have lost about 80% of their vision in both eyes. At this point, it becomes quite obvious they aren’t seeing well, especially if age-related cognitive decline is also occurring. That’s because we and our animals actually “see” with our brains; our eyes are the collectors of light, packaging it and sending it to the brain for interpretation. Most often, dogs and cats only end up at the veterinarian’s office with eye problems when their people notice redness, discharge, squinting, and/or cloudiness in the eyes. These clinical signs are good reasons to have your animal checked, of course, as they could signal an injury or infection that needs treatment. Without intervention, a seemingly minor issue could quickly escalate into a serious problem.

Many ocular conditions once considered hopeless are not necessarily so today because animal parents have knowledge on their side. A few steps you can take to support your dog or cat’s vision health include knowing whether he is at risk for an ocular disease (likely related to breed or age); diligently watching for signs of vision change; having his vision checked annually; and giving daily antioxidant supplements to help maintain the cellular health of the eye, and protect the retina and lens against the damaging effects of oxidative stress. Oxidative stress occurs when there is an imbalance of free radicals and antioxidants in the body. Free radicals are unstable molecules produced by the body during normal metabolic processes, as well as by external factors such as dietary deficiencies, ongoing stress, or exposure to environmental toxins like pollution and pesticides. Free radicals seek to stabilize themselves by stealing an electron from a healthy molecule. Antioxidants are substances that neutralize or remove free radicals by donating an electron. The body produces antioxidants naturally, but antioxidants given through diet and supplementation may

support already healthy cells while helping to ensure your dog or cat is protected from the effects of oxidative stress, which can lead to chronic inflammation and degenerative changes. Antioxidants such as lutein, zeaxanthin, astaxanthin, grapeseed extract, and vitamins C and E may help protect the lens of the eye against a variety of oxidative stressors. Omega-3 fatty acids may complement these antioxidants in support of vision health. Beginning vision care and prevention early in your dog or cat’s life will offer the best outcomes. In those with declining vision — especially older animals — successful eye health support does not necessarily mean a return to full vision, but it does provide your dog or cat with the best possible quality of life.

Terri McCalla, MS, DACVO, is a consulting veterinarian for Animal Necessity and the creator of Ocu-GLO™, co-founder of Animal HealthQuest LLC, and owns Animal Eye Care LLC, a private referral ophthalmology practice in Bellingham, WA. Carmen Colitz, PhD, DACVO, is one of the world’s leading veterinary ophthalmologists, as well as a consulting veterinarian for Animal Necessity and co-founder of Animal HealthQuest LLC. Animal Wellness



A 15-minute weekly

Make grooming your pup quick and easy with this 15-minute weekly regimen!

By Emily Watson

Raise your hand if you’ve ever been too busy to groom your dog. We’ve all been there! When you juggle a lot of responsibilities, brushing Fido can slip a little too low on the priority list. But regular grooming is an extremely important part of your dog’s healthcare routine, so skipping it too often isn’t ideal. To make sure your dog stays looking and feeling his best, try working this 15-minute grooming routine into your weekly schedule. It’s quick, easy, and covers all the bases!

READY, SET, GROOM! 0:00–4:59 — Brush him from head to tail

It’s not a race! Even if you’re short on time, dog grooming shouldn’t be rushed. Take the full 15 minutes (or longer) to ensure your pup is receiving the loving care and attention he deserves.


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The first five minutes of your grooming session should be dedicated to brushing out your pup’s coat — especially if he has long hair! Pay special attention to areas that tend to collect mats, like the underbelly and legs. Use a comb to gently remove any tangles, then use a slicker or bristle brush over his entire body. Be sure to research what tools are best for his coat type.

You can also use this time to check his body for lumps, bumps or any other abnormalities.

sticks and stones can get wedged in the tight space between his paw pads. Clean them well, and apply a natural paw balm to keep his pads supple and protected from the elements.

5:00–5:59 — Wipe his eyes and ears Moisten a cotton ball in witch hazel, water, or a natural ear-cleaning solution. Carefully wipe around your dog’s eyes, lightly rubbing away any tear stains. Moisten a new cotton ball, and gently wipe his ears, removing any loose dirt or debris. Take care not to insert the cotton ball or your finger directly into the ear canal.

11:00–13:59 — Brush his teeth Don’t rush this step. Take the full two minutes to brush your companion’s pearly whites, going slowly to remove any built-up plaque that can lead to tartar. Keep an eye on your dog’s body language as you go — some pups don’t like their mouths handled, especially for long periods of time. If he appears uncomfortable, stop.

6:00–8:59 — Trim his toenails If your dog isn’t accustomed to having his nails trimmed, this step will take longer. If he’s a seasoned pro, take one paw at a time and trim each of his nails using doggie nail trimmers. Be careful not to cut too deep — just trim the shell of the nail, not the quick (see figure below right).

Your dog only needs his nails trimmed every three or four weeks. If they’ve been trimmed recently, skip this part of your weekly routine.

9:00–10:59 — Tend to his paws We’re not done with the feet quite yet! Carefully examine each paw for any injuries or embedded objects — you’d be surprised at how easily

Coconut oil is a good alternative to doggie toothpaste. It contains lauric acid, which kills bacteria that causes tooth decay and bad breath.

14:00–15:00 — Praise, praise, praise!

GROOMING KIT When time is of the essence, it helps to have a grooming kit at the ready! Invest in a small basket, bag, or storage box and assemble the following items, so they’re ready to go when you’re ready to groom. ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔

rush B Comb Cotton balls Witch hazel or ear cleaning solution Nail trimmers Doggie toothbrush Doggie toothpaste Treats

in a “good dog” or two for good measure. Make every second count! Don’t have 15 minutes to spare? It’s time to delegate! Book an appointment with your groomer, or pay your sister to tackle this quick routine once a week. Whatever you do, don’t let grooming fall by the wayside!

It’s important to end your grooming session on a good note. Offering plenty of praise will ensure that your dog forms a positive association around grooming, and looks forward to your next session. Toss him a few of his favorite treats, give him plenty of kisses and Cross-section of a dog's nail snuggles, and throw Animal Wellness




Electromagnetic radiation from wireless technology is having an adverse impact on the health of both people and animals. Here’s how to help protect your dog or cat from this electro-pollution.

D gs Cats By Katie B. Kangas, DVM, CVA, CVCP

Within the last few decades, wireless technology has expanded rapidly around the world. This means most humans and animals are living in a dense sea of electromagnetic energy waves, often referred to as electromagnetic fields (EMFs) or electromagnetic radiation (EMR). Cell towers, cell phones, computers, tablets and more emit this electromagnetic energy. Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have become even more dependent on these devices in the past year, which means many of us — along with our dogs and cats — are in almost constant proximity to


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wireless connections for both work and personal communications. Let’s look at why this is a concern, along with some steps you can take to help protect both your human and animal family from the effects of electro-pollution.

WHY DOES ELECTROMAGNETIC RADIATION AFFECT HEALTH? Current EMR levels are now estimated to be 100 to 200 million times greater than they were just a century ago. Numerous

studies reveal that homeostasis (normal function and balance) within the body is dramatically affected, both physically and energetically, by increasing EMR levels, with negative consequences on the health of people, animals, and even plant life. The reason living bodies are so greatly affected by EMR is because we are all energy in physical form. All living bodies actually have their own biofields (scientifically measured energy emissions). Indeed, all our cells and tissues communicate with each

other via subtle electromagnetic signals and biochemical reactions. Neurons relay signals by transmitting electric impulses, and tiny electrical currents are generated in the body from the chemical reactions that occur during normal bodily functions. The heart is certainly an electrically active organ, as evidenced by an electrocardiogram. In fact, most biochemical reactions, from digestion to brain activities, are powered with the rearrangement of charged particles. Signal pathways carry this energetic information, which gets translated into physiologic processes in the body. Problems arise with continuous exposure to manmade (unnatural) EMR, which distorts and disrupts normal cellular communications, resulting in abnormal cellular metabolism, and ultimately in disease. The proximity of the source to our physical bodies is more important than the power level (or wattage) of the radiation. EMFs dissipate with distance. In other words, a low-powered source located very close to you is more dangerous than a more powerful source a long distance away. Also, the longer the exposure time, the more hazardous. The advent of 5G (see sidebar on page 48) will compound both of these issues — i.e. there will be more sources of EMR around us, positioned closer to us, and emitting more powerful and continuous radiation.

WHAT ARE THE ADVERSE EFFECTS OF ELECTROPOLLUTION? EMFs are known to cause direct and indirect damage to cells and DNA. Numerous publications and research studies cite a vast array of health issues

caused or impacted by EMFs. The World Health Organization and the International Agency for Research on Cancer have classified EMR (EMFs) as a “probable carcinogen”. Many experts have validated that electro-pollution-induced biological stress compromises normal physiology and intercellular communication, as mentioned above, leading to the breakdown of healthy cellular processes. Specifically, cell function deteriorates, cell membranes are altered, free radical damage occurs, nutrients cannot enter the cell, and toxins cannot be excreted. Numerous studies have shown the harmful effects of EMR on the immune system, enzyme syntheses, and nervous system function, as well as on learning, moods, and behavioral patterns. All aspects of physiology at the molecular, cellular, and biochemical levels can potentially be damaged by EMR exposure. Physical effects and symptoms are diverse and variable, and are typically not recognized as having any association with EMR. However, certain individuals (people and animals) are highly sensitive to EMR, and feel noticeably worse effects in close proximity to devices, routers, cell towers, smart meters, etc. Symptoms can include fatigue, headaches, dizziness/vertigo, tinnitus, anxiety, depression, insomnia (poor sleep), weakened immunity, etc. These symptoms can seem vague, as there are many conditions that can lead to them. That said, toxins are certainly known to contribute damage to cells and tissues, leading to numerous ill effects, and EMR is indeed “toxic”, especially

at the high saturation of exposure we have in our world today. Studies have shown that endocrine (hormone system) function appears particularly harmed by the effects of EMR. We have certainly seen a dramatic increase in endocrine diseases (thyroid, pituitary, adrenal, etc.) in animals and people over the last 20 years. Electromagnetic radiation acts as a hormone disrupter and specific studies have shown that EMR has a direct effect on melatonin production. Although melatonin is well known for its association with regulating the circadian rhythms governing the sleep/wake cycle, this hormone also happens to be one of the most efficient destroyers of free radicals. Through various mechanisms, melatonin supports the immune system and counteracts stressinduced immune suppression. Neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine play a major role in moods, and decreased serotonin levels are associated with depression. Studies have found that serotonin and dopamine levels were both significantly depressed immediately following exposure to magnetic fields. Companion animals, like people, are facing exponentially increasing exposure rates to EMR toxicity, since they (via their human counterparts) are surrounded with multiple devices most of the time. Animals and people who live in (or near) densely-populated cities are exposed to dramatically higher EMR, since there are many more towers and electrical systems in these regions as compared to rural areas.

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• Use headsets for mobile phones. • K eep phones in airplane mode as often as possible. • Try to keep a distance of 12” to 20” from your computer screen — that way, you and your animal are Concerns surround 5th generation exposed to a dramatically lowered technology for cellular networks. First, magnetic field (so if your cat likes 5G emits “ultra high frequencies”. sleeping on your keyboard, find Previous cellular generations emitted him a new place to snooze!). from 1 GHz to 6 GHz frequencies. 5G • Turn off the wi-fi in your cell towers may emit frequencies as high home when you are sleeping as 300 GHz. The higher the frequency, or when you leave the house the shorter the length of each wave. and your animals are home. This means more waves reach and • Avoid the use of smart interact with our bodies in the same meters. length of time. • Keep animals, children, and yourself away from routers Secondly, 5G technology requires “ultra and other devices as much high intensity”. Since the shorter length as possible. millimeter waves (MMV) used in 5G do not travel as far (and get obstructed 2. Minimize the effects of more easily), the signal would not radiation. Specific options include be reliable with our current number EMF protectors such as subtle of cell towers. To compensate, many energy technologies, diodes, and more “mini cell towers” will have to be pendants. These tools are designed installed. It is estimated that a mini cell to “harmonize” the stressful EMFs, tower will be needed for every two to which decreases the harmful impacts eight houses, greatly increasing our on the cells in the body. Many of these EMF exposure. devices are created by reputable energy design companies. EMF protectors come PROTECTING YOUR DOG in various formats and sizes and can be OR CAT (AND YOURSELF) used in your home, car, and workplace/ FROM ELECTRO-POLLUTION office. They can be attached to mobile phones and other personal devices, Leading authorities in hormone health worn as a pendant, and fastened to your and EMR safety are recommending three animal’s collar/tag. levels of intervention to adequately protect against electro-pollution. 3 . Strengthen the body’s metabolic


1. Reduce exposure as much as possible. This can be done by avoiding constant proximity to EMFs. It is important to note that magnetic field levels are highest near the radiation source, and decrease rapidly the farther away you get from the source. • Use the speaker function for talking on your phone to avoid having the device right next to your head.


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systems. This supports the correction of cell damage and is done through a healthy diet and lifestyle. As always, the value of a nutrient-rich diet containing foods and/or supplements that either deliver or promote antioxidant activity is very beneficial. Feeding your dog or cat a fully balanced fresh food diet is the best health strategy. Nutritional supplements can be used to provide additional benefits, and may include antioxidants

like melatonin, N-acetylcysteine, SAMe, lipoic acid, green tea, CoQ10, selenium, and vitamins A, C and E. As always, it is best to work with a holistic or integrative vet to choose a good supplement plan for your animal. The first herbal supplements to be tested against cell phone radiation was gingko biloba. Pre-treatment with this brainprotective herb was shown to reverse cell phone-induced oxidative stress and depletion of antioxidant enzymes. Resveratrol and grape seed extract are also reported to protect against the oxidative stress induced by cellphones. In today’s world, it’s impossible to completely remove yourself and your dog or cat from the sea of electromagnetic radiation we now live in. But by taking these three important steps, you can do a great deal to protect your best friend’s health, and your own, from the effects of EMR.


What is resveratrol and how can it benefit your canine companion?

UNDERSTANDING THE BENEFITS OF RESVERATROL FOR DOGS Resvera-what? Resveratrol! This naturally-occurring plant compound is found primarily in the skin of grapes, which is why red wine is considered by many to be a health-boosting beverage. While you shouldn’t offer your pup a glass of merlot, there are other ways he can reap the benefits of resveratrol. Let’s take a closer look at this compound, its benefits, and some of the best ways to boost your canine companion’s intake.

WHAT IS RESVERATROL? Resveratrol is a phenol produced by a number of plants as a form of protection against bacteria, fungi and other pathogens. It’s primarily obtained from the roots of Polygonum cuspidatum (a plant extensively used in traditional Japanese and Chinese medicine) as well as peanuts, blueberries and, as we’ve seen, grapes. Resveratrol does not contain the dangerous substance that makes grapes toxic to dogs, so it’s safe for canines to consume. In fact, it’s extremely beneficial!

THE BENEFITS ARE NUMEROUS Resveratrol has been the focus of numerous research studies, and has been

shown to offer several health benefits to both humans and companion animals: • Helps support cognitive function • Offers antioxidant protection • Helps eliminate free radicals associated with the aging process • Supports normal bodily functions • Helps support normal cardiovascular function • Supplies nutrients for a healthy coat and skin • Maintains and supports healthy vision • Decreases the risk of cancer and stroke • Supports a healthy immune system • Helps maintain general health A study published in 2019 investigated the impact of a supplement containing resveratrol and tocopherol (JUVENIA®) on the harmful effects of oxidative stress in adult dogs. The results confirm that this supplementation positively modulates creatine phosphokinase and alkaline phosphatase, which are considered favorable biomarkers for sarcopenia, bone formation, and acceleration in the bone remodelling process. Since chronic degenerative conditions accelerate aging, the use of antioxidant supplementation — such as those containing resveratrol — could be useful in improving the quality of life of dogs.

BOOST HER HEALTH WITH RESVERATROL! Want to boost your pup’s resveratrol intake? Add a few blueberries or a tablespoon of natural peanut butter to her meals! You can also talk to your vet about whether or not a resveratrol supplement is right for your companion. While dogs don’t require this compound in large amounts, some animal supplement companies have added it to their formulas due to the wide range of health benefits it offers. Juvenia Pets, for instance, offers a line of antioxidant chews and gels for dogs containing resveratrol, curcumin, fish oil and vitamins A and E.

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This goes to show that adopting a dog (or cat!) is not a decision that should be made without a lot of consideration, along with a wholehearted commitment to caring for the animal for the span of his lifetime.






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The health and wellness of cats living in shelters is a huge concern. One of the top reasons for euthanasia in shelters is due to cats contracting a disease while in their care, the most common of these being upper respiratory disease. In a new study funded by Morris Animal Foundation at the University of California, Davis, researchers have found that reducing the incidence of upper respiratory disease in shelter cats could be as simple as changing the way animals are housed. Trials of a new two-compartment housing unit that provides room for cats to hide, as well as separating their food and litter box areas, has shown drastic reductions in cases of upper respiratory infections, along with decreased stress levels. The new cage design has been adopted worldwide, revolutionizing the way cats live in rescue organizations.


Photo courtesy of The Million Cat Challenge

The COVID-19 pandemic has led many people in isolation to adopt a dog to combat the loneliness of social distancing. But some of these new animal parents have found themselves overwhelmed with the responsibility of caring for their new companions. Shockingly, a recent survey found that 73% of people who became dog parents for the first time last year are considering re-homing their animals once the pandemic ends — likely due to a lack of preparation and knowledge when it comes to dog care.

Do dental treats make a difference?


By Scott Reinhardt

Many people overlook the importance of dental hygiene in dogs and cats. According to the American Veterinary Dental College, it’s estimated that most animals show signs of periodontal disease by three years of age. Since the primary sign of early dental disease is bad breath, it often goes untreated because people may think that bad breath is something dogs and cats inherently have. Periodontal disease can cause some serious health issues for our dogs and cats, and this is why it’s very important to maintain good oral hygiene. Otherwise, animals can lose teeth, and suffer pain from infection and abscesses. Infection in the mouth can then spread to other parts of the body. Poor dental health has even been linked to heart disease. Regularly brushing your dog or cat’s teeth and providing him with a healthy diet and treats helps keep his mouth healthy and avoid gum disease. However, we all know that brushing an animal’s teeth can pose quite the challenge.

INCORPORATE DAILY DENTAL TREATS Fortunately, dental treats and bones are an easy, effective, and delicious way to improve dental health. As the only dental chew on the market that uses the proven PlaqueOff® System, Swedencare Dental Dog Bones offer extended dental benefits to the dogs that need them most. They scrub away plaque and tartar, then help keep teeth clean and freshen doggie breath. Swedencare offers regular size dental bones in four flavors, including Bacon, Chicken, Turkey, and Veggie. Mini bones for toy and small breed dogs come in Vegetable Fusion and Vegetable Fusion Blueberry flavors. The bones are made from natural sea kelp with vegan probiotics, and are also grainfree and gluten-free, as well as naturally rich in Omega fatty acids.

powder form and can be used over the animal’s food to help reduce the fundamental cause of bad breath and plaque and tartar development. They also lead to better gum health for the animal. Swedencare USA’s Proden PlaqueOff® powder can be used once daily over wet or dry food. The powder is 100% natural sustainably-harvested sea kelp, from along the North Atlantic coast, is free of additives and artificial preservatives, and contains no gluten or added sugar.


Swedencare USA is an expert in animal dental care products that have been shown to decrease tartar and bad breath and increase overall health and longevity. The products are made using ProDen PlaqueOff®, an all-natural food supplement that supports oral health for dogs and cats with a specially-selected algae harvested in the North Atlantic. swedencareusa.com

For both dogs and cats, sprinkling a dental powder over food is another easy way to improve overall dental health without having to use a toothbrush. These supplements are available in

Scott Reinhardt is VP Sales & Marketing North America for Swedencare USA. He has extensive experience in sales, brand development and managerial expertise in the US and Canadian pet specialty consumer products channel. He is an accomplished strategic marketer with prior experience in consumer sales as an Operations Manager of a high volume big box retail chain. Animal Wellness


By Bill Ormston, DVM





Chiropractic care isn’t just for back problems — it can also help relieve digestive upsets in your canine companion.

Chiropractic care is geared at correcting musculoskeletal problems in humans, dogs, and other animals. Dogs with sore backs, as well as those that are unable to turn correctly, respond favorably to chiropractic care. But did you know that chiropractic can also help dogs with digestive issues? Let’s find out how.

THE CONNECTION BETWEEN MUSCLES AND THE GI SYSTEM The GI system is comprised of smooth muscle that must contract appropriately to move ingesta through the digestive tract. This coordinated movement is orchestrated by the central nervous system, and is aided by the muscles of the back and abdomen. Poor coordination and improper communication between the brain and bowels lead to poor muscle tone and inappropriate movement, causing problems with digestion, which in turn leads to digestive upsets.


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The muscles of the abdomen and back are very important in supporting the organs of the GI tract and providing the abdominal press necessary for the proper expulsion that occurs during routine urination and defecation. Weak or sore back muscles will hinder your dog’s ability to properly squat for elimination, while weak or saggy abdominal muscles will hinder the abdominal press needed to to help move waste products towards the outside. Basically, most digestive upsets are caused by the inappropriate movement of waste through the GI tract.

HOW CHIROPRACTIC WORKS Chiropractic care works well for musculoskeletal problems because it helps restore nerve flow to the target organ. When an area of the spine is not moving, it accumulates

inflammation. The canine chiropractor rehabilitating your dog to strengthen his If your dog is suffering finds areas of the spine that are not abdominal muscles. Just as in humans, from digestive problems moving correctly and applies a specific canine cross-training will help to build force to restore movement, which even strength and flexibility, including of any kind, it’s important aids in reducing inflammation in that in the abdominal area. However, this that he first sees a area. This reduction of inflammation muscle training can only be done once removes pressure from the nerves as the signal from the brain is turned on veterinarian so you can they exit the spinal column. It has via the chiropractic alignment. Think get to the root cause of been proven that the weight of a of it like reading a book in a dim room; feather on a nerve will decrease the it can be done with difficulty, but once the issue before deciding rate at which impulses travel along you turn on the light it can be done on any treatment plan, that nerve by 50%! A decrease in much more easily and accurately. So too whether it includes communication between the brain and when it comes to correcting the muscles muscles results in improper function in and around your dog’s abdomen and chiropractic care or not. and weakening of the muscle, digestive tract. including those of the abdomen and back. “The quality of healing is Note that this healing process may directly proportional to the functional capability of the central take time. The muscles of the abdomen and digestive tract nervous system to send and receive messages,” says Jason didn’t become weak overnight, and they won’t become Edwards, MD. strong overnight either. In dogs recovering from an acute case or dealing with recurrent, chronic issues, a session with USING CHIROPRACTIC TO HELP a certified animal chiropractor every couple of weeks will TREAT DIGESTIVE UPSETS increase the rate of healing and aid in preventing more bouts of uncomfortable and sometimes serious digestive tract issues. Now that we can see how digestive upsets, muscle function, and communication from the brain are related, we can discuss adding chiropractic to the treatment plan for digestive issues. Chiropractic is a modality that allows the body’s own intelligence to aid in healing. This is the same intelligence that enabled two cells (the egg and sperm) to grow into the magnificent animal that is your dog. According to an article in the European Spine Journal, “Proper spinal function can help balance a key component of the body, the autonomic nervous system, which regulates many aspects of the health from blood pressure, heart rate, and breathing to gut function, sexual arousal and controlling stress.” Your dog’s chiropractor should be certified by the American Veterinary Chiropractic Association (AVCA). In Canada, the Veterinary Chiropractic Learning Centre program is approved by the AVCA and the College of Animal Chiropractors. If your dog is having symptoms of an acute digestive problem, you may need to use some traditional treatments from your veterinarian along with a visit from your certified canine chiropractor. A canine chiropractor will examine and adjust your dog’s spine. Aligning his spine is the first line of defense in helping with digestive problems. In order to help him with chronic digestive issues, the chiropractor will also offer you suggestions for Animal Wellness



h t l a e h c i d e v r A yu FOR YOUR DOG By Amanda Ree

The oldest tricks in the book are sometimes the best. This is certainly true of the timeless healing science of Ayurveda. This proven and highly effective 5,000-year-old modality can be applied to our dogs with good results. Using some simple and easy-to-apply techniques from the Ayurvedic approach, your dog can enjoy great improvement in his overall health and well-being.

An individualized approach It’s important to know that Ayurveda is not a “one size fits all” approach. It teaches that all sentient beings have a unique mind-body personality, also referred to as their “dosha”.


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Incorporating these ancient Ayurvedic principles and techniques into your dog’s lifestyle will help prevent illness while increasing his everyday health and well-being.

Knowing your dog’s dosha can be very helpful in determining his natural tendencies, behaviors, disposition, and common ailments. It also helps you pinpoint what your dog needs in order to achieve and/or maintain steady, vibrant health, and can provide an access point to the root of his physical, emotional, and behavioral issues. A clear Ayurvedic roadmap can be tailored to support your pup’s wellness and longevity, and essentially bring him back into his natural state of balance.

each carry our own unique ratio or combination of them — and so do our dogs. It is this personal “recipe” that determines one’s primary dosha or constitution.

Understanding the three doshas

Ayurveda provides specific practices, techniques, and lifestyle shifts to assist us in balancing all three doshas. When we or our dogs experience a certain physical,

There are three doshas: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. All beings are made up of all three doshas, but we

For example, a Vata type will have more Space + Air; a Pitta type more Fire + Water; and a Kapha type more Earth + Water. This gives us a wonderful foundation for better understanding how the elements, which are obvious outside of us, are also present inside of us.

Ayurvedic lifestyle recommendations are especially applicable to dogs because they support healing through the senses — taste, touch, smell, and sight. emotional, or even spiritual challenge, Ayurveda guides us towards which dosha needs attention.

Dosha qualities — and how to address imbalances in your dog When the doshas appear to be out of balance, Ayurveda offers specific steps to regain that balance through lifestyle changes and natural treatments. This boosts your ability to address your dog’s health and behavioral issues at the root source, supports the length and quality of his life, and even creates a deeper soul connection between you.

out of balance may express itself as anxiety, fear, or hyperactivity. A Vataimbalanced dog may have a weak appetite, lose weight, or struggle with arthritis. If your dog is shy, insecure, or fidgety, Vata imbalance could be the culprit.

purposeful, and attentive canine. Too much Pitta will often be evidenced by skin problems (including rashes), digestive disorders, and inflammation. Mentally, a Pitta-imbalanced dog might have some aggression, be overly intense, or exhibit jealous behavior.

How to balance this dosha:

How to balance this dosha:

• You can help balance Vata dosha by thinking consistency. If your dog is Vata imbalanced, establish a grounding routine that includes an exceptionally stable and peaceful environment. Your dog will benefit from regular exercise followed by massage (add in some deep audible breathing) and a good brushing.

• Pitta pups favor foods and environments that are cooling in order to regulate their heat. During the hot seasons, they should have a cool resting spot designated just for them. Cucumber, apple, pumpkin puree, and parsley — all cooling foods — can be added to their diet, along with a bit of coconut oil.

1. VATA dosha has dry, light, and mobile qualities. When a dog’s Vata is in balance, he is active, energetic, and very social. Vata that’s

• Nourishing foods for Vata are warm and moist, and include goat’s milk, healthy oils, and lightly-cooked root vegetables. • The scents of vanilla or cedar, used very lightly and never directly on your dog’s hair or skin, will provide grounding and balance.

2. PITTA dosha shows as being hot, moist, and sharp. A dog with his Pitta in balance is a focused,



Over the centuries, we have slowly moved away from the natural world and its ability to nurture and heal our bodies and minds. And we’ve brought our canine companions right along with us. We are currently living in an era of significant medical advances that help treat disease and injuries.

• It’s best for Pitta dogs to avoid intense situations or overstimulation.

These are important developments, of course, but why isn’t our focus also on promoting everyday health and well-being, which doubles as preventative medicine? Ayurveda does exactly that. It offers innumerable natural methods and practices to reconnect the body/ mind to its innate healing capability. Animal Wellness


Many enjoy a good swim or time near water. During playtime, skip the roughhousing and introduce mentallystimulating activities instead, like agility, games, or fetch. • Especially light scents, such as rose or lavender, can help a Pitta-imbalanced pup regain balance. • Every dog will enjoy meditating, but Pittas in particular should meditate with you daily.

to “keep Kaphas moving” and provide a daily schedule of invigorating play and activity. • Use bright, energizing colors and patterns on their bedding, collars, etc. to add energy. • Keep meals on the lighter side by including pureed leafy green vegetables and a small amount of finely-chopped ginger to stimulate digestion. Avoid avoid heavy, fatty foods, processed foods and treats (aka junk food for dogs).

3. KAPHA dosha presents as stable, consistent, and heavy. A balanced Kapha dog is strong, reliable, and has great stamina. Excessive Kapha leads to stagnation, lethargy, and possessive behavior. A dog that is withdrawn, overweight, or unaccepting of change could be Kapha imbalanced.

How to balance this dosha: • Kapha canines need activity. Although it’s common for Kaphas to want to withdraw or hide when out of balance, dog parents should remember


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• Kaphas may benefit from very light scents of cinnamon or sage.

To find out what your dog’s primary dosha is, take a quick Dog Dosha Quiz at SamaDog.com/Quiz.

Understanding the three doshas helps us better understand our dogs

and allows us to more easily work with nature to enhance their overall well-being. Ayurvedic lifestyle recommendations are especially applicable to our canine companions because they support healing through the senses — taste, touch, smell, and sight. Canines live in an entirely sensory-oriented world, so by adjusting their environments, we can literally change their lives. Most important of all, enjoy your Ayurvedic journey towards a more natural lifestyle together. By practicing the suggestions presented in this article, you’ll soon see healing benefits in your canine companion — physically, behaviorally, and in the form of a more profound bond with your best friend.

Disclaimer: The information presented in this article is not intended as a substitute for professional medical or behavioral advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified animal health care provider with any questions you may have regarding your dog’s medical or behavioral condition/s.

February BEAT THE


Superfoods from the sea

Treat your dog or cat to something new and healthy. Canned wild seafood and treats from Healthy Shores feature marine superfoods. They’re produced on Vancouver Island by St. Jean’s Cannery — seafood experts since 1961. Your animals will taste the difference with nature’s best food from Canada’s West Coast! healthyshores.com

Brighten up his accessories

Need some cheering up? Add some color and pizzazz to your dog’s accessories with a quality beaded dog collar or leash from The Kenyan Collection. There are loads of colors and designs to choose from, all created by Maasai artisans to promote economic growth, commerce and trade in Kenya. kenyancollection.com

Rejuvenate with resveratrol!

Resveratrol is a naturally-occurring plant compound offering a wide range of health benefits, from protecting against pathogens to supporting cognitive function. Juvenia Pets’ line of antioxidant chews and gels for dogs feature resveratrol as well as curcumin, fish oil and vitamins A and E for a winter wellness boost. juveniapets.com

“Slide” away from inflammation

Inflammation is a key factor in arthritis, decreased immune function and other issues. To help, Clear Conscience Pet’s recently-relaunched SLIDERS® brand of holistic meaty treats feature BTC™ Bio-Active Turmeric Complex, with high potency turmeric extract, organic coconut oil, black pepper extract, Boswellia serrata and more. clearconsciencepet.com

Prebiotic supplement for good gut health

Stress, diet changes, vaccinations, and antibiotics can turn your dog’s gut into an unfriendly environment and force beneficial microbes to go dormant. Dyna Pro is a prebiotic supplement that creates the ideal conditions for good microbes to come out of dormancy, multiply, and thrive. animalandhumannutrition101.com

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MOBILITY MATTERS Factors that affect mobility: Arthritis Hip dysplasia Neurological problems Acute injury

By Lori Wade

CHOOSING A WHEELCHAIR FOR A DOG WITH MOBILITY ISSUES If your dog has mobility problems, the right wheelchair can make a huge difference to his quality of life. One of the joys of sharing your life with a dog is going for walks together. But mobility problems caused by aging, injury or disease can make even a simple trip across the room painful or even impossible for some dogs. In the past, a loss of mobility usually meant the end, but thanks to canine wheelchairs and mobility carts, specially designed and fitted to suit each dog’s body type, capabilities, and limitations, even animals that are partially paralyzed can get moving again and enjoy good quality of life.


increases the burden on their weightbearing joints. Fortunately, you can choose between both rear-support and full-support wheelchair options.

i s attached to a pair of connecting horizontal rails. This arrangement provides gentle, much-needed support for weakened or painful rear legs.

• A typical rear-support dog wheelchair features a pair of wheels attached to metal struts and rails. In addition to straps that anchor the wheels to the dog’s back legs, another support harness behind the dog’s front legs

•A full-support wheelchair bears a strong resemblance to a rear-support wheelchair except that it includes an additional, smaller pair of wheels near the dog’s front legs, as well as a sling to support the his midsection

HEALTH CHALLENGES THAT IMPACT MOBILITY Numerous health issues can have a direct impact on mobility in dogs. Here are a few examples:

NEUROLOGICAL PROBLEMS: A stroke, spinal cord injury, or neurological disease may cause a dog to lose function in one or more legs.

ARTHRITIS: This condition afflicts dogs

Dog wheelchairs are not created equal, and that’s a good thing. Some dogs need assistance only for their rear legs, while others need help taking the load off all four limbs. The latter often proves true for dogs who struggle with osteoarthritis, especially if obesity


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as it does humans, and for the same reasons. In its most common form, osteoarthritis, the cartilage within joints deteriorates, making movement painful.

HIP DYSPLASIA: This is a congenital problem in which there's too much play in the hip joint; the resulting instability causes progressive joint damage and pain.

ACUTE INJURY: An acute injury to one or more limbs may make normal walking impossible. Some health challenges may call for only temporary wheelchair use, while others may mean your dog needs a wheelchair for an indefinite period. Think about whether you should rent a wheelchair or purchase one outright.

SELECTING A SIZE The size and weight of your dog will obviously affect the size of the wheelchair you rent or buy for him. Companies such as K9 Carts provide helpful tips and measurement guides. They also make multiple sizes of wheelchairs with built-in adjustability, allowing you to fine-tune their fit for your own dog’s unique dimension.

OTHER TIPS TO ENHANCE YOUR DOG’S WHEELCHAIR EXPERIENCE Little things can mean a lot in the world of canine wheelchairs, including weight and strength, and the wheels themselves: • T he lighter the wheelchair, the better for dogs who struggle to get around. • You also need to know that the design, material, and construction will be durable enough for safe, secure, longterm use. Aircraft-grade aluminum offers the ideal combination of these two attributes. • Cheaper foam wheels aren’t likely to hold up well over rough terrain or lots

of walks. Overly-hard or rigid wheels may prove sturdier, but they can make for a rough ride. Tough, air-filled wheels can provide reliable service while also giving your dog that extra degree of shock absorption to help him over those inevitable bumps in the road.

THE GETTING-ACQUAINTED PROCESS Your dog will need to get familiar with his new wheelchair before you simply strap him in and take him for a walk. Remember that he has no idea what this strange thing is, much less understand that it’s supposed to be strapped onto him. Take your time during this getting-acquainted process. In fact, don’t even strap your dog into the wheelchair at first; simply leave it near his bed and let him accept it as a harmless, normal household item. Once he seems to have done so, you can try placing him in the harness and letting him get the feel of the wheelchair. With that accomplished, see if you can get your dog to make short trips within the home by playing with him or tempting him with treats. If he seems to

HOW TO DETERMINE IF HE NEEDS A FULLSUPPORT WHEELCHAIR If you aren’t sure whether or not your dog might need a full-support wheelchair, you can figure it out by performing something called the towel test. Create a makeshift sling out of an old towel, cutting two holes in it to accommodate your dog's rear legs. Place his rear legs through the holes, then gently lift his hindquarters with the towel and see how well he balances or ambulates on his front legs. If the front legs seem weak or wobbly, go for a full-support wheelchair.

get around smoothly in his wheelchair, you’re ready to start taking him on walks. Your dog will love his new freedom — and you’ll love watching him enjoy it!

WHERE TO FIND DOG WHEELCHAIRS K9 Carts k9carts.com My Pets Brace mypetsbrace.com Walkin’ Wheels handicappedpets.com

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INTEGRATIVE VETS Affordable Holistic Animal Therapies West Hollywood, CA USA Phone: 323-304-2984 Ballantrae Animal Hospital Margaret Hacking, DVM Stouffville, ON Canada Phone: (905) 640-6809 Website: www.AnimalWellnessCentre.com Beechmount Animal Hospital Waterloo, ON Canada Phone: (519) 888-6590 Website: www.beechmountanhosp.ca Dr. Lisa Burgess Millgrove Veterinary Services Millgrove, ON Canada Phone: (905) 690-4557 Email: service@burgessvet.com Website: www.millgrovevet.com Sharon R. Doolittle, DVM, Inc. Smithfield, RI USA Phone: (401) 349-2668 Email: vetinfo@holisticanimalvet.com Website: www.holisticanimalvet.com

Janice DeFonda Can We Talk Fayetteville, NY USA Phone: (315) 329-0116 Email: angelwhispurr@gmail.com Website: www.angelwhispurr.com

Dr. Autumn Drouin, DVM, ND and Dr. Sasan Haghighat (Hyatt), DVM, CVA North-East Newmarket Veterinary Service Newmarket, ON Canada Phone: (905) 830-1030 Email: holisticveterinarian@gmail.com Website: www.holistic-vet.ca

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• Acupuncture • Chiropractic •Conventional Medicine •Therapeutic Nutrition •Traditional Chinese Medicine Guelph, Ontario, Canada (519)836-2782 www.GuelphVet.com info@GuelphVet.com Harwood Oaks Animal Clinic Bedford, TX USA Phone: 817-354-7676 Website: www.harwoodoaksanimalclinic.com Hawks Prairie Veterinary Hospital Lacey, WA USA Phone: (360) 459-6556 Email: hawksprairievet@yahoo.com Website: www.hawksprairieveterinaryhospital.com Holistic Animal Care Stephanie Chalmers, DVM, CVH Santa Rosa, CA USA Phone: (707) 538-4643 Home Vet Weston, CT USA Phone: (203) 222-7979 Website: www.homevet.com

Carrie Hutchinson, VMD Rockledge Veterinary Clinic Rockledge, PA USA Phone: (215) 379-1677 Email: info@rockledgevet.com Website: www.rockledgevet.com

Essex Animal Hospital Essex, ON CAN Phone: (519) 776-7325 Email: info@essexanimalhospital.ca Website: www.essexanimalhospital.ca Family Veterinary Center Haydenville, MA USA Phone: (413) 268-8387 Website: www.famvets.com


Individualized, Integrative Veterinary Care

Horizon Veterinary Services Susan Maier, DVM Simpsonville, KY USA Phone: (502) 722-8231 Email: horizonvetserv@yahoo.com Website: www.horizonvetserv.com

Lydia Hiby Mysticviz Burbank, CA USA Phone: (818)-244-0091 Website: www.lydiahiby.com Lynn McKenzie Animal Energy Sedona, AZ USA Phone: (512) 827-0505 x 8642 Email: lynn@animalenergy.com Website: www.animalenergy.com

Dr. Caroline Goulard, DVM, CCRT, CVA, CVPP Paws on the Go Laguna Woods, CA USA Phone: (949) 707-1696 Email: cgoulard@pawsonthego.net Website: www.pawsonthego.net

Integrated Veterinary Clinic Sacramento, CA USA Phone: 916-454-1825 Gail Jewell, DVM Kelowna, BC Canada Phone: (888) 622-8300 Website: www.holisticvet.ca

communicators • integrative vets • natural products • pet psychics • publications • Reiki therapy • schools & wellness education • shelters & rescues •

SCHOOLS & WELLNESS EDUCATION PetMassage, Ltd. Toledo, OH USA Toll Free: (800) 779-1001 Phone: (419) 475-3539 Email: info@petmassage.com Website: www.petmassage.com



MANUFACTURERS & DISTRIBUTORS Azmira Holistic Animal Care Tuscon, AZ USA Phone: (800) 497-5665 Email: info@azmira.com Website: www.azmira.com

NATURAL PRODUCT RETAILERS Dog Gone Dirt All Natural Dog & Horse Skin Care Products Crescent City, FL USA Phone: (386) 559-3454 Email: doggonedirt@yahoo.com Website: www.doggonedirt.com

Well Animal Institute Brighton, CO USA Phone: (303) 514-0076 Email: info@wellanimalinstitute.com Website: www.wellanimalinstitute.com


Dr. Shawn Messonnier Paws and Claws Vet Clinic Plano, TX USA Phone: (972) 712-0893 Email: shawnvet@sbcglobal.net Website: https://pawsandclawsanimalhospital.com/ Mark Newkirk, VMD Newkirk Family Veterinarians Egg Harbor Township, NJ USA Phone: (609) 645-2120 Email: mnewk@alternativevet.com Website: www.alternativevet.com

Healing Touch for Animals Highlands Ranch, CO USA Phone: (303) 470-6572 Email: drea@healingtouchforanimals.com Website: www.healingtouchforanimals.com

Alaskan Malamute Mt. Gilead, OH USA Phone: (419) 512-2423 Email: shaman@brightnet.net American Brittany Rescue Sugar Grove, IL USA Phone: (866) BRIT-911 Email: rhonda@americanbrittanyrescue.org Website: www.americanbrittanyrescue.org

REIKI THERAPY Aileen D’Angelo, RMT, Cn. TPM Hoof, Paw & Claw Reiki Northboro, MA USA Phone: (508) 393-3684 Email: hoofpawclaw@verizon.net Website: www.reikiforcritters.com

Animal Avengers Los Angeles, CA USA Phone: (323) 655-4220 Email: admin@animalavengers.com Website: www.animalavengers.com

Amy Pikalek Hikari Natural Healing Madison, WI USA Phone: (608) 886-8778 Email: hikarihealing@yahoo.com Website: www.facebook.com/HikariHealing/

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Animal Wellness




Tui Na

can help ease your cat’s arthritis

By Amy Snow & Nancy Zidonis

Tui Na, also known as acupressure-massage, is an effective way to alleviate the the discomfort of arthritis in cats.

Cats are tricksters. Their wild ancestors evolved not to show weakness or pain lest they fall prey to other predators in the wild. Our domesticated cats have the same “ancestral” mindset, so it can be difficult to assess when they may be suffering from painful conditions such as osteoarthritis. That means it’s up to us as to watch for any subtle signs of arthritis encroaching on our cats’ joints, and to take steps to relieve their discomfort using the tools available to us — including Tui Na, a form of Chinese acupressure-massage.

with litter box avoidance, changes in her gait, matted fur along her spine, and/or changes in behavior and personality. Is your cat sleeping more? Is she seeking sunny spots and other warm places to curl up in more than ever before? If your cat’s coat appears scruffy and matted, it’s because she doesn’t have the flexibility to groom herself as thoroughly as she used to, because she is not able to twist and reach her back and chest. These are common indicators of osteoarthritis in a cat.



To be absolutely sure your cat’s condition is arthritis, visit your holistic or integrative veterinarian to rule out other health conditions that can present in a similar fashion. Depending on the severity of your cat’s condition, your vet may recommend ways to make your cat more comfortable, including dietary supplements, weight management, an exercise routine, pain relief medication — and complementary therapies such as acupressure-massage.

These ancient concepts are really very effective and simple: if the body is cold, it needs to be warmed. So when a limb or joint is experiencing a cold syndrome, it needs to be warmed to relieve pain and encourage healthy tissue.

Basically, arthritis is the degeneration of cartilage between the bones, leading to a painful progression of joint disease. Cats tend to develop arthritis in their shoulders, hips, elbows, stifles (knees), and tarsi (ankles). Any cat over the age of seven can become arthritic; however, joint disease is more common and more severe in cats over the age of 12. As your cat ages, watch for any reluctance to jump on furniture, along


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In Chinese medicine, osteoarthritis is considered a “cold” condition because the underlying effect is the deterioration and loss of living tissue. There are times when arthritis presents as acute inflammation (heat) and painful swelling; however, the cartilage and bone are experiencing a sort of death and therefore become cold. This is why, in Chinese medicine, arthritis is considered a “cold” syndrome.

TUI NA: ACUPRESSUREMASSAGE Ancient Chinese doctors were highly adept at soothing the aches and pain of arthritis. Feline and human bodies have

not changed since then. The bodywork techniques used to soothe and warm arthritic limbs in ancient times have been used consistently for thousands of years. These warming techniques are called Tui Na.

one hand forward and the other back across the joint. Continue to increase the speed as you repeat the forward and back motion to build warming friction around your cat’s joint.

Tui Na (pronounced “tway naah”) is the original Chinese acupressuremassage. Two hands-on techniques known to warm the limbs can help improve your cat’s comfort and mobility. The beauty of these techniques is that you can practice working with your cat to help her.


limb, shoulder, or spine going from top to bottom or from head toward the tail depending on your intended location. Next, draw back along the same “channel” you used doing the forward motion. Continue by moving up and back along the channel, repeatedly and rhythmically, to create a warming effect.

Cou Fa

1. Cou Fa The first technique is called Cou Fa (pronounced “soo [long ‘o’] fa”). This is a rolling and rubbing technique where the friction of the rubbing creates heat.

2. Tui Fa The second technique is Tui Fa (pronounced “tway fa”). This hands-on technique is highly versatile. Tui Fa can be used easily along your cat’s limbs, spine, hips, and shoulders to increase energetic movement and warmth.

It’s best to perform Cou Fa with your cat lying on her side. Place one hand under her fore or hind limb to support it. Place your opposite hand directly on top of the limb in the same location. Then start to slowly, rhythmically, and gently move

Place one hand on your cat. Using your opposite hand, place your forefinger and middle finger where you want to begin. Then gently glide along the

Tui Fa

Most cats love Tui Na — especially if you, as her special person, are helping her feel better. She may take a while to get the message that you want her to feel her best, so give it a try when she seems open to having a Tui Na session with you. The point is to share a time of healing with her!

COMMON SIGNS of arthritis and degenerative joint disease in cats Limited mobility:

Difficulty grooming:

Less activity:

•D ifficulty getting up or down •R eluctance to jump up

•L ess time

• I ncreased sleeping •L ess time exploring

or down

•A voiding stairs •S tiffness or lameness •S wollen or hot joints •D ifficulty using litter box


•S cruffy, matted appearance

•E xcessive grooming of joints

or playing

•R educed social interaction

Changes in temperament: •P ersonality change • I rritable or reactive when petted

•A voiding other animals and people

•L onger, sharper nails Animal Wellness


HOW GUT HEALTH AND IMMUNE SYSTEM SUPPORT CAN HELP DOGS WITH CANCER Learn why your dog’s gut and immune system can help him combat the effects of cancer and cancer treatment. Cancer and cancer treatments often have negative effects on a dog’s immune, digestive, integumentary (skin, hair, nails etc.) and other physiologic systems. Common impacts from the disease and its treatment include lethargy, digestive upset, weight loss, lameness, rapid heart rate/breathing, unusual discharge, pain and swelling. But if dogs are supported through nutrition systems aimed at preserving their healthy function, the opposite can also be true. The health of these systems can play a critical role in how well the animal maintains a high quality of life throughout the disease’s progression and how well the side effects of treatment are tolerated.

THE LINK BETWEEN IMMUNITY, THE GUT AND CANCER Depending on the state of the dog’s microbiome, the right gut bacteria can produce several defenses that will help preserve good health. Through positive interaction between the animal’s microbiota (microorganisms in his digestive tract) and his immune system, a beneficial body response that targets disease-causing organisms can be encouraged. In other words — the healthier the gut, the healthier the immune system and ultimately, the healthier the animal.


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starvation and apoptosis. These diets also increase the levels of ketone bodies available for energy production in normal cells, but not in cancer cells.2

THE IMPORTANCE OF NUTRITIONAL SUPPORT A purpose-built and well integrated nutrition system that includes the right vitamins, minerals, amino acids, mushroom and plant extracts, and effective levels of Omega-3s (specifically DHA) can reduce inflammation and degradation of the gastrointestinal system lining, and guard against liver toxicity. These conditions often accompany cancer, and sometimes also manifest as the side effects of treatment. Gut health can be enhanced with diets that are rich in protein and naturallyoccurring antioxidants, especially when their levels are carefully balanced to not interfere with the efficacy of treatments such as chemo and radio therapy.

There’s a lot to consider when formulating a diet for dogs battling chronic disease. Working with your veterinarian to determine which nutrients best support gut and immune health, reduce inflammation, and guard against the damaging side effects of treatments can help assure the best outcome.

THE CASE FOR LOW-CARB DIETS Studies have demonstrated the importance of limiting carbohydrates when building a nutrition plan for dogs with cancer: • Studies have linked carbohydrate-rich diets to colorectal cancer in humans.1 • Carbohydrate-restricted (along with high-fat) diets produce cancer cell


Belcheva A, Martin A. Gut microbiota and colon cancer: the carbohydrate link. Mol Cell Oncol. 2014;2(1):e969630. Published 2014 Nov 11. doi:10.4161/23723548.2014.969630


V ergati M, Krasniqi E, Monte GD, et al. Ketogenic Diet and Other Dietary Intervention Strategies in the Treatment of Cancer. Curr Med Chem. 2017;24(12):1170‐1185. doi:10.2174 /0929867324666170116122915

Canine Biologics (caninebiologics.com) is the only company dedicated exclusively to developing nutritional systems for canines with cancer. With its recently released, cancer-focused Integrated Nutrition System, it helps take the guesswork out of this challenging process.

Animal Wellness



By Tonya Wilhelm

Preparing your home for a


Adopting or rescuing a new dog? Here are six ways to prepare your home and family so the newcomer’s arrival goes as smoothly as possible.

Adopting or rescuing a new dog is undeniably exciting. You can’t wait to bring him home, and welcome into your life and heart. But before you do, there are some important preparations to make. You need to ensure your home is as safe and animal-friendly as possible, and that your family knows what to do and how to help in order to make the transition as smooth as possible. Here are six steps to successfully integrating your new best friend into your household.

Puppy-proof your house — inside and out

Young dogs and puppies are notorious for getting into mischief, but so are some adult canines! It’s better to make sure your home is free of temptation rather than end up chasing your new dog when he has the remote control in his mouth, or grabs a loaf of bread off the table. Look at your home through a dog’s point of view. What can he reach, chew, or knock over? Remove these items, pick up your shoes, and shut bedroom, bathroom, and office doors. Many of these measures will only be temporary as you and your dog get used to each other and he eases into his new environment.


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Next, take a walk around your yard. If it’s fenced in, check the gate, along with the height and bottom of the fence. Are there any large gaps your dog can get through? Is there anything along the fenceline that he could climb in order to jump over? If he’s a small to medium-sized dog, make sure he can’t wedge his head between any boards or rails. Even if you have a securely fenced-in yard, it’s wise to take your

Take him out often

I would suggest every 30 minutes in the beginning. dog outside on a leash instead of allowing him free access to the space, at least until he settles in.

your family ➋ Include in the preparations Some dogs adjust to their new lives without missing a beat. Others need some quiet time to acclimatize to the people in the home. Have a family discussion prior to adopting your dog to determine what everyone’s role will be. Who will feed him, do potty duty,

and take him for walks? What are some good games you can all play with your new dog? It’s best for everyone to be on the same page right from the start.

Go shopping before you bring him home

Do all your shopping for supplies before you bring your dog home. Purchase healthy food and treats, bowls, toys, leashes, a harness, a bed and crate. If you don’t have a local vet, find one; it’s always a good idea to take your new dog to the vet for a meet and greet, along with a physical, within a week of bringing him home.

Start on housetraining right away

If your dog isn’t already housetrained, you need to start as soon as you bring him home. Regardless of his age, treat him as if he’s a small puppy. Keep your eyes on him at all times unless he is in his crate. This way, you will learn to tell when he needs to go outside, while helping to avoid potty accidents in the house. Take him out often — I would suggest every 30 minutes in the beginning.

Keep him on a leash, and when he does his business, praise him and give him a tasty snack. If he’s enjoying his outside time, don’t rush him back indoors right away; allow him to sniff around and enjoy the fresh air. If you find any housetraining mistakes inside the house, never punish your dog. Simply clean up the mess. If you catch him starting to eliminate inside, don’t reprimand him; just grab the leash and calmly take him outside. When a dog is punished or yelled at for eliminating indoors, he won’t understand that the unwanted behavior is going inside the house; instead, he’ll think that peeing or pooping in front of you is bad. This can lead to even more potty mistakes, along with other undesirable behaviors such as eating poop and refusing to eliminate while on a leash.

Keep training fun and positive

Training your new dog in a positive manner is a great way to jumpstart a good relationship. The key is to ensure that you and your dog are having fun. You can teach your dog a variety of behaviors in the comfort of your home, or in your yard. Remember to use reward-based methods. This means giving your dog plenty of praise and treats when he follows a cue, and simply withholding them when he doesn’t, while avoiding any verbal or physical punishment. Dogs that have learned basic behavior cues such as sit, down, stay, and watch are a joy to be around. Dogs that are also taught fun tricks such as bow, circle, hand touch, and more are eager to continue learning and look to their humans for entertainment and guidance. If you’re unsure about training your new dog on your own, seek the guidance of a positive dog trainer. Group training classes can be beneficial if your dog is comfortable around other people, dogs, and new environments. If he is a bit reserved or unsure, private dog training would be the better option.

Remember the power of threes

In dog rescue, we talk about the power of threes. Three days, three weeks, three months. What this means is that rescued dogs tend to undergo three behavior changes during these timeframes. During the first three days of adoption, dogs can be a bit in shock. What is going on? Where am I? Who are these people? At three weeks, they start to open up, and become more relaxed in their new homes. Around the three-month mark, they seem to settle well into their groove and their full personalities start to show. Adopting or rescuing a dog is a big step, and important for both of you. You are giving him a new lease on life, and he is giving you unconditional love and companionship. Following these steps will help ensure a successful and lifelong bond. Animal Wellness




acupuncture By Judy Morgan, DVM, CVA, CVCP, CVFT

A wide variety of health problems in dogs, from allergies to kidney disease, respond well to acupuncture. Here’s a look at the most common conditions this ancient healing modality can help treat.

When it comes to alternative therapies for dogs, acupuncture is one of the most well-known, even among those who practice mainstream medicine. It’s not surprising, considering how long acupuncture has been around — and how effective it can be in the treatment of a wide range of health problems in our canine companions. This article focuses on the most common conditions in dogs that acupuncture can help with.


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DOGS RESPOND WELL TO ACUPUNCTURE Acupuncture is an effective treatment for dogs. In, fact, many clients who seek acupuncture therapy for their dogs have reached an impasse with traditional veterinary medicine when it comes to solving a chronic problem, or they have found that their dogs cannot tolerate the traditional medications used to treat disease.

The most common conditions to be treated with acupuncture include musculoskeletal problems such as pain from osteoarthritis, hip dysplasia, and ACL tears; mobility problems such as paresis or paralysis; gastrointestinal disorders; allergies and immune system disorders; and chronic kidney disease. While most dogs will react slightly when an acupuncture needle is inserted, many will sleep or become very tranquil once the needles are in place.

• Allergies Inhaled allergies in dogs, also called atopy, can be particularly difficult to treat. A multimodal approach is required to provide relief. Allergies are a breakdown of an out-of-balance immune system reacting excessively to innocuous antigens. A deficient response by the immune system to an antigen may result in recurrent infections; up to 80% of dogs with allergies develop secondary skin infections.

• Back pain Dogs with back pain commonly have decreased range of motion in their leg joints, and sore muscles due to tension and spasms. By inserting acupuncture needles, the stimulation of nerves at points deep in the musculature along the spine will cause a release of endorphins, opioid peptides that decrease pain transmission along nerves. In cases of intervertebral disc disease, both pain control and nerve regeneration may be achieved using acupuncture. The needles have a local effect on muscle spasms and pain, but also stimulate nerves that travel to the spinal cord and brainstem to provide pain relief.

By using known acupuncture points, balance can be restored to the immune system; commonly-used points include LI-4 and LI-11 on the front legs, ST-36 on the hind legs, and GV-14 on the midline over the shoulders. Allergies can be difficult to treat, requiring months or years to alleviate. Avoiding known allergens, making dietary and environmental changes, and incorporating herbal therapy may be required along with acupuncture.

• Osteoarthritis pain Treatment of osteoarthritis pain in specific joints can be accomplished by inserting acupuncture needles in “local points” surrounding the joint. Tissue microtrauma from needle insertion triggers a release of chemicals that cause increased blood and lymph flow to the area. This causes blood vessel dilation, which increases the local immune response, bringing oxygen-carrying red blood cells and immune-responsive white blood cells to heal and repair damaged tissues. Additionally, muscles and tissues in the surrounding area will relax, leading to decreased pain.

• Gastrointestinal problems Gastrointestinal diseases may result in vomiting and diarrhea secondary to food allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, motility disorders, or aging changes. The stomach, intestines, pancreas, and liver are all involved in the digestion of food. Any of these organs can be out of balance, requiring treatment with acupuncture. The veterinarian will first determine where the imbalance resides within the body, then rebalance using acupuncture to heal the problem. Dogs with blood or mucus in the vomitus or stool are suffering from too much heat in the body (excess Yang) while those passing watery gray stool with undigested food have too much moisture (excess Dampness) and weak


Acupuncture has been used on animals for over 3,000 years, originating in China as a way to treat horses injured during war. By the 17th century, the study of veterinary acupuncture had reached Europe. In 1974, a special symposium entitled “Acupuncture for the Veterinarian” was held in the United States. Since then, acupuncture has gained in popularity with over 150,000 trained veterinarians in veterinary clinics across the US. Traditionally, veterinary acupuncture has been performed with sterilized, stainless steel needles inserted into acupuncture points in the body. Today, treatments may also involve injections, cold lasers, pressure, heat, cold, electricity, and implants of gold or silver. Acupuncture is believed to work by stimulating neural-hormonal pathways to release hormones that reduce pain and inflammation.


Treatments are repeated every few days or weeks for the first few sessions; after that, they may have longer intervals. Generally, three to five sessions are recommended to get the full benefits that might develop, as the effects are cumulative. Follow-up treatment intervals depend on the issue being treated. The more chronic or advanced the disease state, the more acupuncture treatments are needed. Animal Wellness


digestion. The first condition would be treated with acupuncture points to drain heat, while the second would be treated with acupuncture points to drain the Dampness and warm the body. Dietary changes to suit the above Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM) patterns should be instituted along with acupuncture treatments. Home-prepared, human-grade foods are preferred, as the diet can be individualized for each patient. Herbal therapy may also be warranted. • Kidney disease Kidney disease in dogs may be acute or chronic. Acute kidney disease may result from the ingestion of toxins, poisons, or medications, as well as infection, or decreased blood flow to the kidneys secondary to shock or organ failure. Chronic kidney disease is more common, and is due to aging, chronic disease, or exposure to external pathogens.

Unfortunately, chronic kidney disease may not be detected until its late stages as the symptoms may be more subtle. Increased thirst and urination, decreased appetite, vomiting, and bad breath may be signs of disease, but symptoms of failure are not seen until approximately 75% of the kidney tissue is nonfunctional. Annual or semi-annual lab work including blood chemistries and urinalysis should be performed to determine early signs of decreased kidney function.

kidney disease, improving urine flow, decreasing inflammation, strengthening the hind end, and eliminating incontinence. Common acupuncture points for treating chronic kidney disease include BL-23, KI-3, KI-7, and KI-10.

No conventional or alternative medical treatment can reverse chronic kidney disease, as the disease involves the death of kidney cells with replacement by scar tissue. The rate of progression in any individual dog may be slowed, but not stopped, by various treatments.

Dietary changes would also be appropriate for dogs with chronic kidney disease, along with herbal formulas to suit the TCVM pattern diagnosis.

Acupuncture can help slow disease progression by decreasing the high blood pressure associated with


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Some dogs will have dry nose, foot pads, and coat, with excessive thirst and panting. Others may drink little, be urine or stool incontinent, have weakness in the hind end, and seek warmth. Acupuncture points would be chosen to fit the pattern the individual dog is showing.

Acupuncture is an important tool in the medical toolbox utilized by holistic and integrative veterinary practitioners. While the conditions discussed above are the ones most commonly treated with acupuncture, many others could be added to the list. Don’t overlook this powerful modality!





When applied correctly, therapeutic taping can help prevent injuries in dogs when they’re exercising.

IN DOGS DURING EXERCISE Taping works pretty much the same for dogs as it does for humans during exercise. It lifts the skin from the nerves, fascia, muscles, and other connective tissues below it. By creating more space between these layers of tissue, taping reduces the pressure of inflammation caused by lymphatic fluid, which builds up with overuse or injury. The elasticity of therapeutic taping allows it to stretch with the skin, so it supports rather than restricts movement.

2. Pulled abdominal muscle Stiffness or pain in the abdominal region is often the first sign of this injury.

Since dogs are covered in hair, therapeutic tape for canines is a bit different. “It’s designed to stimulate and lift the hair follicles, thereby elevating space to reduce swelling and increase range of motion,” says Mona Angel, Director of Education at Kinesio. “The tape gives a continuous stimulation to the target area, which can give muscle and ligaments a chance to rest by taking the pressure off of those areas.”

TAPING METHODS TO PREVENT COMMON INJURIES 1. Torn or detached biceps muscle at the shoulder This injury occurs when there is force or sudden impact on the shoulder joint. A dog with a torn or detached biceps might have an unnatural posture or may be placing less weight on the injured leg.

3. Inflammation or tear in inner thigh This is one of the most frequent areas of muscle damage in a working dog. Watch for pain, stiffness or reduced range of motion.

Taping can help keep senior dogs comfortable during exercise, and help increase mobility and prevent injury in canine athletes and working breeds. Use therapeutic taping on the target areas when you observe pain, stiffness or weakness. Look for a tape that’s lightweight, breathable, and allows full range of motion. “The thickness and weight should be designed to approximate the weight and thickness of skin,” says Mona. “Ideally, it should have an adhesive pattern designed to work with a dog’s hair follicles, and should promote ease of movement — not hinder it!”

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isn’t Dog walking it’s an art! just a task… thing you Here’s every w , do and kno need to buy amateur to turn your brilliant stroll into a . masterpiece


Traditional — Inexpensive, available in a wide variety of styles, great for everyday use

Martingale — Ideal for dogs who slip out of traditional collars

HARNESSES • Reduce pulling • Offer more support and security • Protect the windpipe

Back-clip — Prevents leash from getting tangled between the dog’s legs

Front-clip — Offers maximum control, good for training purposes


TIP: Don’t forget identification! Microchip your dog and buy her an engraved ID tag at your local pet store.


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Ideal for everyday walking and basic training

Option for more control during training or on busy streets

Waist loop allows for handsfree walks, great for runners or hikers

TOOLS TO AVOID ✖ Choke collars ✖ Prong collars ✖ Retractable leashes

The Training

“Sit, stay” — Use this basic command TIP: Train her indoors! You can’t expect a dog to behave on a walk until she has developed basic manners. Practicing her sitting, heeling and recall skills in a safe space without distractions will set her up for success in the great outdoors.

when waiting at crosswalks, or if your dog gets taunted by a passing squirrel.

“Heel” — This can take a while to master, but every dog should know how to walk without pulling. Visit animalwellnessmagazine.com/ dog-walk-without-pulling for some tips on teaching this behavior.

“Come” — Dogs without good recall skills have no business being off-leash, so make sure she’s well-versed in this command before unclipping her. Even if you don’t plan to let her run free, this is a good skill to work on in case she ever gets loose while you’re out for a walk.

TOP 5 TIPS FOR TIP: Know someone with a dog? Ask them if they want to walk together! Not only will this give you some company, it’ll help socialize your dog and introduce you to new walking locales you might not have discovered on your own.

Safety Considerations Wear reflectors — This is especially important if you’re walking when it’s dark out, or along busy streets

Stick to safe routes — Roads with narrow shoulders and no sidewalks are no place to walk your dog. The same goes for dark alleys, icy paths and remote areas with no cell service. Use common sense when picking a route!

Perfect Dog Walks 1

Keep it fresh. Prevent boredom and maximize excitement by switching up the route each time you head out.


Don’t forget the poop bags!

3 4

Carry water and treats. If you get


Walk regularly. A well-exercised

Watch for signs of fatigue or injury — Keep an eye on your pup on walks, especially if he’s a senior or has an existing health condition. Pay extra close attention to his well-being if the weather is extreme.

Be mindful of other dogs — Your dog might be a social butterfly,

It’s your “doody” as a dog parent to pick up after your pooch.

him a backpack, he can carry his own!

Let him sniff. Dogs need mental stimulation as much as they need physical exercise, so let him explore with his senses.

dog is a well-behaved dog. In other words, the more you walk him, the better walking partner he’ll be!

but not every dog is! Approach strange canines with caution, and always ask their guardians before letting your dog get too close.

Only let her off-leash if she’s trained — No recall, no freedom! Learn how to train the off-leash dog at animalwellnessmagazine. com/training-the-off-leash-dog.

TIP: If you don’t have time to walk your dog for at least 15 minutes, two to three times a day, hire a dog walker!

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Photos courtesy of Rosier Days Dog Rescue Society

Rosier Days Dog Rescue Society

Animal Wellness will donate 25% of each subscription purchased using promo code RDDR to Rosier Days Dog Rescue Society.

Along with the rest of the staff, volunteers and foster families, the directors at the Rosier Days locations ensure that dogs find their perfect forever homes. Clockwise from left: Emily Erickson, director, Victoria; Tabitha Strong, director, Calgary; and Angela Good, director, Victoria.

LOCATION: Victoria, BC and Calgary, AB YEAR ESTABLISHED: 2013 NUMBER OF STAFF/VOLUNTEERS/FOSTER HOMES: RDDR has four passionate directors and six major volunteers. “Between both locations, we have approximately 15 foster homes,” says Tabitha Strong, Director of Calgary Operations. TYPES OF ANIMAL THEY WORK WITH: Rosier Days Dog Rescue Society (RDDR) takes in shelter dogs that are in immediate life-threatening situations, or from shelters that need the space to make room for other dogs in desperate need. FUNDRAISING PROJECTS: As a small organization, most of RDDR’s fundraising efforts are done in pet stores. “Seasonal photoshoots and meet and greets are two of the most effective ways to fundraise here,” says Tabitha. “Other efforts include partnering with local artists and venues for online sales and promotions.” FAVORITE RESCUE STORY: “If you were to ask each of our directors what their favorite rescue story is, we would all have a hard time choosing just one,” says Tabitha. “The dogs that come into our care are each so special in their own way. Our group is incredibly passionate about giving each dog a fair chance at a new start and we believe that the most challenging ones are the most rewarding.”


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Tabitha’s favorite rescue story involves a small black dog named Milo. When she saw his shelter picture, she knew immediately that he was special and needed to come to RDDR. In the photograph, he had a broken leg, a scar around his neck, and a terrified look in his eye. “I welcomed him into my home to help him through his fears,” says Tabitha, who is an active foster parent through the rescue. “We took it very slow, and showed Milo what it looks like to be loved by humans. I had never had such a fearful dog in my home, so we learned together.” Over the course of the following months, Milo’s hair grew in, he learned how to play with toys, and grew to love humans. According to Tabitha, he ended up in an amazing home with very patient and loving people. “Now if you were to meet Milo on the street, you would never know of his rough past,” she says. “He is a social butterfly with an abundance of love to give and will make you laugh for days with his goofy personality.” Stories like Milo’s keep the entire team at RDDR going, and make their line of work incredibly worthwhile.

Find Rosier Days Dog Rescue Society online: rosierdays.com facebook.com/rosierdaysdogrescue instagram.com/rosier_days

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There’s a reason we loved to color so much as children — it’s relaxing as well as fun! Add a cat coloring book to the mix and you have the perfect solution to stress. By Sally E. Bahner

As the pandemic rages on into the New Year, our stress levels have reached an all-time high. Some of us are working from home while also juggling household responsibilities and helping kids who are distance learning; while others are feeling the loneliness, boredom, and even depression that arise from being isolated at home with not enough to do. Whatever your own situation, there are lots of solutions to the stress you might be feeling. For instance, have you ever considered coloring? This simple childhood activity has been shown to reduce stress and refocus the mind. And if you’re a cat lover, you can choose from a variety of


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great cat coloring books to make the experience even more fulfilling!


a Sunday drive can all be relaxing” (health.clevelandclinic.org/3-reasons-adultcoloring-can-actually-relax-brain). In short, coloring takes our attention away from ourselves and relaxes the brain.

Over the past number of years, coloring has become a go-to stress reliever for many people, even those who don’t consider themselves artistically inclined. According to Scott M. Bea, PsyD, coloring refocuses our attention. “Adult coloring requires modest attention focused outside of self-awareness,” he says. “It’s a simple activity that takes us outside ourselves in the same way that cutting the lawn, knitting, or taking

Coloring also offers multi-faceted pleasures: choosing the design, picking the tools (pencils, pens, markers, crayons, or a mix), deciding which colors to use, seeing the artwork evolve, and admiring the results. The feel of the pencils and how they lay down on the paper varies from brand to brand and paper to paper. For the novice, or those looking to broaden their skills, YouTube has lots of videos, and Facebook offers

many adult coloring groups, geared toward coloring in general or dedicated to particular artists and their books.

CHOOSING A CAT COLORING BOOK Adult coloring books have been published on every topic imaginable; in addition, websites and Facebook groups offer downloadable coloring pages. Cats are a popular coloring subject, and are portrayed in a variety of ways in a huge number of books — from the realistic to stylistic to whimsical. After some 15 years of exploring adult coloring and amassing a collection of books, I’ve settled on a half dozen or so favorite artists. Here are just a few. • Creative Haven’s Creative Cats, by Marjorie Sarnat (Dover), is probably one of the best known and has been around the longest. (Sarnat has published two additional books called Creative Kittens and Christmas Cats Coloring Book.) Creative Cats is one of my favorites, and features stylized sweet-faced cats in incredibly detailed themed settings, such as butterflies, the moon and stars, space, music, writing, toys, and the sea. The designs are printed on one side only, which is ideal for those who prefer the vibrant (but bleed-through) colors of markers. The pages are also perforated for easy removal.

• Mystical Cats in Secret Places, by Honoel, is a mind-boggling collection of two-sided detailed drawings, more than 80 in all. It may have been wiser for the artist to break the book into two single-sided volumes to accommodate marker use. Although the paper is heavy, I’ve used a variety of pencils and gel pens, which work just fine. Glitter pens in particular add a wonderful pop to the artwork. • Among the other favorites in my collection are: 3C olor Cats — Books 1 and 2, by Margaret Gates Root, featuring realistic cats in household and literary settings (colorcats.org) 3C olor Me Cats, by Artist BZTAT, with its stylized kitties in settings that beg for bright colors (bztatstudios.com/coloring-books) 3 Cat Therapy: 100 Designs — Colouring In and Relaxation which contains a diverse selection of stylized and realistic felines (Amazon). If you have a cat in your life, you know that felines have perfected the art of relaxation. And science has shown that coloring reduces stress. Combine the two, and you have the ideal recipe for stress relief — along with a fun and absorbing activity to do as you spend more time at home!

COLORING CATS — an affordable hobby

In terms of cost, coloring is one of those hobbies where you can spend a little or a lot, depending on your budget. Books range from $5 to $15, occasionally more — for example, Creative Cats costs around $5. A set of 72 colored pencils by Cra-Z-Art costs just under $10 (and they are really quite good for the price!). For coloring connoisseurs, a 120-count set of Farber Castell Polychromos (considered among the cream of the crop — and yes, they are wonderful) runs close to $200, but there are numerous brands of pencils, markers and gel pens in all price ranges, so you’re sure to find something to suit your budget.

More cat coloring books These books can be purchased on Amazon. •C at Butt Coloring Book (Catty Press) • Cats & Flowers: A Coloring Book (Eva Carriere) •C oloring Book for Adults: Adorable Cats (MantraCraft) • Funny Cats Adult Coloring Book (Colokara, Amanda Grace)

Left to right: Creative Kittens by Marjorie Sarnat; Color Me Cats by Artist BZTAT; Creative Cats by Marjorie Sarnat. All colored by Sally Bahner.

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Be sure to visit event websites for updates regarding COVID-19. Dog Owner's Guide to Canine Massage Online Course | On-demand — Online Course This comprehensive online course will teach you everything you need to know about massaging your dog! In addition to foundational massage techniques (including Swedish, Myofascial Release, Gua Sha and more), this course provides an introduction to canine anatomy terms, the canine skeletal system, joints and the musculature system. You will also learn to evaluate lameness, prepare your dog for massage and explore supportive therapies such as nutrition, supplements, aromatherapy, heat and cold therapy and much more. Complete this course from anywhere and work at your own pace. It’s an optimal learning experience with demonstrative videos that make the learning process fun and easy. For more information: (866) 906-2842 www.holisticanimalstudies.org CN3005: Canine Anatomy & Behavior Pre-course Distance Study — Online Course If you are planning on attending our signature CN3000 Caninology® Canine Body Worker (CCBW) Certification Course this is a required pre-course study to prepare you for the certification course.

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Chicagoland Family Pet Expo March 19–21, 2021 — Arlington Heights, IL Chicagoland's FAVORITE Pet Expo Returns for its 27th Year and is set to deliver top-quality entertainment, demonstrations, presentations and the latest products, services and rescue organizations for pet owners and pet enthusiasts.

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For more information: (800) 946-4611 www.petchicago.com Animal Wellness Expo June 12–20, 2021 — Online Event ATTENTION pet parents, retailers, distributors and para-professionals. Join us for the BIGGEST virtual pet event ever! If you love pets, like to learn and SAVE MONEY, then you will love the Animal Wellness Expo. There is something for everyone and it's 100% COVID FREE. Access the most innovative educational information from the best pet product experts in the industry, save on hundreds of amazing products with exclusive show specials and coupons, PLUS AW Expo is full of exciting contests and prizes awarded every day of the show. Participate in deals, enter draws, and interact with exhibitors to maximize your chances of winning one of more than 100 prizes. Register today! It's FREE to attend. For more information: 866-764-1212 info@animalwellnessmagazine.com www.animalwellnessexpo.com

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Title: The Spirit of Animal Healing Author: Dr. Marty Goldstein Here is the long-awaited follow-up to Dr. Marty Goldstein’s tremendously successful first book, The Nature of Animal Healing. Titled The Spirit of Animal Healing: An Integrative Medicine Guide to a Higher State of Well-Being, this new volume provides readers with the most up to-date tools and knowledge they need to keep their dogs and cats healthy — and prevent disease from occurring in the first place, instead of just treating their animals when they’re sick. Founded on the vast amount of specialized expertise Dr. Marty has gained from veterinary practice over the past 45 years, The Spirit of Animal Healing takes readers on a journey to the leading edge of integrative veterinary understanding, where they’ll gain deep insight into the minds and bodies of their animal companions. Within its pages, you’ll discover expert info on a variety of topics, including nutrition and supplements, cutting-edge therapies, the truth about vaccinations, the latest in cancer treatments, the spiritual nature of animals, and much more. Mind-blowing true cases from Dr. Goldstein’s career offer tangible examples of healing, and will inspire you to take your dog or cat’s care to a whole new level. Publisher: St. Martin’s Essentials

Title: The New Pet Parent Book Author: Cristina Diaz-Madronero, DVM Anyone who has a dog knows he’s just as important as any other family member. In fact, the family dog is often the maker of the happiest memories. It’s something millions have discovered during COVID-19, as lockdown inspired them to buy or adopt dogs. But veterinary surgeon and author Dr. Cristina Diaz-Madronero urges people to do their research before bringing a dog into their lives — not only to ensure the puppy is acquired from an ethical source, but that they’re aware of the immense and challenging responsibilities of being “dog parents”.

The New Pet Parent Book is a great resource for those who already have their new dog, as well as for those considering this most rewarding and life-changing decision. Dr. DiazMadronero’s educational guide is designed to provide new dog parents with the knowledge necessary to give their canines the best care possible. Compiling the most common questions people have when they welcome a dog into their family for the first time, this book will tell you everything you need to know, and leave you confident that you're doing the right thing every step of the way. Publisher: WOW Book Publishing™


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obesity in dogs and cats:


Obesity is a major problem that affects not only humans but cats and dogs as well. According to a 2018 study, 56% of dogs and 60% of cats in the US are overweight or obese. New theories and studies have found that obesity is not just a result of too many calories and not enough exercise, but is affected by a variety of factors in the body. • Genetics contribute to an animal’s physiology, which means a dog or cat may inherit a tendency towards being overweight. Studies suggest that Labrador retrievers have the highest obesity prevalence of any dog breed. Service dogs can also have a tendency to become overweight due to genetic predispositions. This is because dogs that are highly food-motivated have historically been chosen to be trained as service dogs; so canines descended from breeds traditionally used for service purposes can have bigger appetites leading to weight gain.

According to a 2018 study, 56% of dogs and 60% of cats in the US are overweight or obese.

• The gut microbiome is another factor connected to obesity. The gut microbiome is the sum of all genetic material found in the gut. Veterinary researchers have documented a difference between the composition of the microbiome in obese and overweight dogs versus those with a healthy weight. • In addition to physiological factors, exterior influences such as the advice of veterinarians can have an effect on a dog or cat’s weight. A recent review of veterinarians noted that many are reticent to speak to their clients about obesity in their animals. They feel they might “offend, upset, anger, or even lose a client” if they bring up the topic of weight loss. • The misperceptions of animal parents are a huge contributing factor, since it’s up to each of us to determine our dog or cat’s diet, and whether or not they are living a healthy lifestyle. Studies show that many people underestimate the body condition of their animals, leading to the misconception that their dogs and cats have a normal body condition when they’re actually overweight. Fortunately, you and your veterinarian can use several validated body condition charts to determine if a dog or cat of any specific breed is overweight or not. If you are concerned about your own animal’s weight, always speak to a veterinarian before starting any weight loss plan to make sure it’s healthy for your dog or cat.



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