A few years ago, while running errands, I pulled off to the side of the road to let a convoy of fire engines pass by. As the sound of sirens began to approach, I heard a low, mournful howl radiating from my backseat.
It was Sable, my black Labrador retriever; her head was thrown back with her chin raised straight up, eyes closed as she joined the chorus of sirens.
It was the first time I’d heard her respond to the sound of a siren. My other dog, sitting next to Sable, pretended not to notice this odd behavior or the exponentially loud alarms of the engines speeding by, choosing instead to nudge me with her nose as if to tell me to keep on driving.
I was fascinated: Why do dogs howl at sirens? And why will one dog howl while the other won’t?
Canine hip dysplasia (abnormal development of the hip joint) begins when the hip joint in a young dog becomes loose or unstable. If left undiagnosed and untreated, this instability causes abnormal wear of the hip cartilage and ultimately progresses to osteoarthritis or degenerative joint disease. Signs of this condition are pain, reluctance to get up or exercise, difficulty climbing stairs, a “bunny-hopping” gait, limping, and lameness, especially after periods of inactivity or exercise.
Hip dysplasia most commonly affects large- and giant-breed dogs; however, smaller dogs can also be affected. Although genetics often play a role in this disorder, young dogs that grow or gain weight too quickly or get too much high-impact exercise are also at risk. Being overweight can aggravate hip dysplasia.
We can help prevent or slow this condition by monitoring food intake and ensuring that your dog gets proper exercise as he or she ages. We can also screen your dog for hip dysplasia, using one of two methods. The earlier we can diagnose hip dysplasia, the better the possible outcome for your dog.
Caring for your new puppy helps bring you even closer to your new family member. Learning the ins and outs of puppy care might seem daunting, especially if you’ve never owned a dog before, but it’s easier than you think. Besides, one look into that adorable little face makes it all worth it.
1. Find A Good Vet
It might not seem important at first, but having a good vet is essential for your dog’s longterm health. Regular checkups are essential, especially for puppies. Your vet will be able to give puppy her first vaccinations and recommend any special types of care for different breeds.
2. Create A Puppy Space
Your puppy needs a place to feel safe and loved. Create an area in your home with your puppy’s bedding, water and food bowls, and toys. If you’re afraid of the bowls being knocked over, keep those in your kitchen, but still close to the puppy’s bed. This allows your puppy to acclimate. Make sure he can still see you easily as he gets used to his new home.
Congratulations on your new kitten! Thank you for choosing us to help protect and care for your new addition to your family.
Our kitten wellness program is designed to help get your kitten started on the right path to a long and healthy life. The first few months are a critical period in your kitten’s development, and we can give you the support and tools necessary to help him or her grow into a well-mannered, healthy cat, including information and advice on nutrition, litterbox training, and behavior.
Ease your concerns about leaving your pet behind while you’re away: Let our qualified staff take care of him or her. We will provide your dog or cat with a safe, comfortable, “home away from home” atmosphere. We are happy to accommodate any special care or needs your pet might have. Just let us know when you make the reservation.
We provide amenities such as clean bedding and food and water bowls, but feel free to bring your own if you’d prefer. Toys and other personal items that are washable are welcome. We will administer any needed medication and follow your specified feeding regimen. (Alternately, we can provide a high-quality diet and treats for no extra charge, although eating their own food tends to agree better with most boarded pets.) We can also provide grooming services before you pick up your pet.
Imagine if your dog or cat got lost. You’d want to give him or her the best chance of getting home. With microchipping, you can.
Microchippifng is a safe, permanent way to identify your pet in case he or she becomes lost. A microchip, which is a tiny device about the size and shape of a grain of rice, is placed just under the loose skin at the back of the neck. When a lost dog or cat without an ID tag is found, a veterinarian or veterinary technician will use a handheld microchip scanner to check for a chip. If the pet has one, it will transmit its ID number to the scanner via a low-frequency radio wave. The veterinary hospital or shelter then calls the chip manufacturer, retrieves the pet owner’s contact information, and calls the owner.
Even the most responsible pet owners can’t always guarantee their pet won’t get lost. A leash could break or slip out of your hand, a pet could push through a screen door or window, or a contractor or friend might accidentally leave a door or gate open.
At Stafford Animal Hospital, we take pride in delivering personalized, compassionate care to our patients and their guardians in Stafford and surrounding areas. Our team strives to provide a comfortable environment for our patients and clients and we want everyone, either two legged or four, to feel welcome as soon as they enter our veterinary clinic. This all starts with a warm hello for you and your pet.