Why is my cat spraying?
Help! My cat is spraying in my house and won’t stop! Why is he doing this?
This is often one of the smelliest and most frustrating problems that cats may develop. Getting to the root of the problem is key:
- Is kitty “acting out” due to some change in the household
- Showing marking behavior of an unneutered male
- Is it due to medical causes such as a urinary tract infection or bladder stones?
Deciphering kitty’s reasoning for his actions is the first key step in changing the behavior pattern and restoring some sense of order to your household. Continue…
Cats Get Bored Too!
Easy Home Enrichment for Your Cat
Your cat spends its days within your home, 24/7. Have you ever wondered if he/she gets bored? The answer is absolutely yes! Without environmental enrichment (aka: something to do), your cat may turn to undesirable or destructive behaviors to entertain itself.
The good news is that enriching your home environment is easy! The goal is to maximize your cat’s quality of life through simple changes to your house and daily routine. Continue…
Crate Training Your Pet
Have you ever thought about crate-training your dog or cat?
There is a lot of misconception about crating pets, ranging from concerns about “locking them up” or that “it’s too small a space- he can’t possibly be comfortable in there!”
In fact, when introduced properly to your pet, a crate can become a safe retreat for your pet, a place where he can go to get away from things he is scared of or to rest and relax in peace. Continue…
Feeding Your Guinea Pig
You have a new guinea pig: congratulations! Guinea pigs are inquisitive and rewarding pets, but proper feeding is critical to their long-term health and well being!
The basics: what do I feed my guinea pig?
Your guinea pig is an herbivore, which means he eats only plant material like hay. Herbivores need to have food moving constantly through their digestive systems to avoid serious health problems. Continue…
Lumps & Bumps- What is this mass on my dog?
You were petting your dog this morning and found a bump that you’re sure was not there last week- is it serious? The short answer is: possibly.
Dogs tend to develop lumps and bumps as they age; whether these are something to worry about or can be safely ignored can be difficult to tell based on the appearance alone. Continue…
Sneezing Dog? Think Foxtails!
My dog is sneezing like crazy all of a sudden in fits and won’t stop- what’s going on?
Just like humans, a dog’s nose is very sensitive to irritation, often resulting in a violent sneezing fit to dislodge whatever is causing the discomfort. In the case of most dogs, especially in California, the foxtail is all too often the culprit. Continue…
Flea Treatments Are Not Equal
Is your pet’s itching driving you crazy? If so, you’re not alone! “Flea season” is upon us and it has come with a vengeance this year.
But wait! My pet can’t have fleas- I use flea treatments regularly to take care of that problem.
Unfortunately, in our practice, we’ve been noticing a marked rise in flea resistance to many of the popular spot-on flea treatments recently, especially to drugs like fipronil. In other words, you, the pet owner, are doing everything right by applying your flea prevention regularly, but it’s not killing the fleas as effectively anymore. The result: utter frustration (and itchiness). Continue…
Trimming a Dog’s Toenails
Help! My dog will not let me trim his nails at home- he acts like I’m trying to hurt him and won’t sit still! Is there any way to train him to let me do this?
The good news is that yes! There are several easy things you can try at home to desensitize your dog to the “horrors” of the nail trim (in his mind) and change his perspective to the whole process. I have met dogs who feel the nail trimmer is the equivalent of a horror movie villain, clearly up to no good with harmful intent.
The next appointment may have a dog so eager to get his nails trimmed that he will bully his housemates out of the way for his owner to file his nails first, tail wagging the whole time. What’s the difference between these dogs? Fundamentally, nothing, beyond how nail trims were introduced and handled in the past. Continue…
Itchy, Smelly Ears? Think Infection!
Have you noticed your dog shaking its head recently, or yelping when you touch its ears? And what is that smell?
Just like people, dogs can, and often do, get ear infections. Some dogs are lucky (if you can call it that) and only get a one-time ear infection, perhaps after going swimming. Others are less fortunate and are predisposed to chronic ear infections, which can lead to intense itching or even pain if severe. Continue…