Pets of the week for December 11, 2013
Young large neutered male Terrier mix
I was transferred from Safe Haven Animal Sanctuary in hopes of a second chance at finding a new forever home. Iím a handsome guy with lots of energy that loves to play (I would do best in an active home). Please come meet me and make me a part of your family.
Young adult spayed female Domestic Short Hair
My wish this holiday season is to find a home where someone will feed me, love me, and keep my litter smelling fresh! Oh, and a nice cozy bed to sleep on and some toys would be nice as well. I would love being held and snuggled on cold nights! Donít mind me hiding at first; it just takes me a little longer to get used to all the new sights, scents and noises. Eventually I will come out of my shell and make my presence known. Enough of the small talk ó when are you going to make my holiday wish come true?
Last Week's Pets: Cinnamon the dog and Cha-Cha the cat are still available.
If you're interested in adopting one of the Pets of the Week, or seeing what other pets are available for adoption, contact the Delaware Humane Association, 701 A. Street, Wilmington, DE 19801. Or call (302) 571-0111
Humane Association Shelter & Animal Visitation Hours:
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Ask the Vet...
Your chance to ask Dr. Mindy Cohan, VMD, our resident pet health expert, what's on your mind!
Topic: Incompatible Cats
Question from Vernay in Wilmington:
I have an older cat, Lucy. I'm not sure how old Lucy is, but she was already an adult when I got her in 2005. She's been the only pet for the past 7 years. Recently I added a kitten, Emjay, who really needed a home. The kitten was 4 weeks when I got him. In hindsight, I see that it was a horrible idea. Lucy seems stressed out by the kitten, who insists on jumping on her, hitting her tail and running, and just being an overall pain in the butt. It's been four months, and while I've seen some progress, I still worry about Lucy. She's lost weight, doesn't play much, and isolates herself more. She's a totally different cat. I feel so guilty and I didn't know it would be this way. I assumed she would want to mother the cat. They fight often and I feel that the kitten is lonely because he has no one to play with. I try to give them both my attention, but I know I show the kitten more. Is there anything I can do for my Lucy. Getting rid of baby Emjay is not an option, but what else
can I do? HELP!!
Answer from Dr. Mindy Cohan:
Introducing cats is always a risky endeavor. New feline housemates can become slow or fast friends. At times, however, harmony is never established. If finding a new home for Emjay is not feasible, I have a few suggestions.
First, try keeping Emjay isolated when you are not home. This will allow Lucy to regain confidence and comfort in her original domain. Allow Emjay his freedom while you are home to supervise interactions. You can secure Emjay with a harness and leash to ensure he does not physically hurt Lucy. A spray bottle can also be used to deter Emjay from pouncing on Lucy. Secondly, if you do not have climbing perches, add a few to your home to enable Lucy to have a safe place to escape from Emjay. These products are available in pet stores and through Internet companies.
Lastly, I recommend feeding the cats on separate sides of a closed door. This will help Lucy develop a positive association with Emjay. As less hissing or other stressful reactions are observed, you can slowly open the door to eventually allow the cats to see each other while eating. When the cats are together and Lucy is tolerant of Emjay, offer her treats or pieces of kibble as a reward.
Unfortunately, some cats never develop a compatible relationship. I am concerned about the detrimental effects on Lucy such as weight loss and chronic stress. Although Emjay might become less of a nuisance as he matures, you need to ensure that Lucy stays healthy. If the situation fails to improve, you will need to consider permanent separation of the cats within your home or seeking other living arrangements for Emjay. Good luck!
Posted October 15, 2012
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Pet Tip of the Month...
Quick tips to help keep your pets healthy and happy.
The Dangers of Chocolate and Xylitol for Dogs
Dark chocolate has been touted for its many health benefits. Studies show that eating a small amount each day will boost your cardiovascular and immune systems. However, feeding a small amount to your dog can be very hazardous.
Bittersweet, or dark chocolate, is the most dangerous variety. It contains a high concentration of theobromine. Theobromine is the caffeine-like agent to which dogs are very sensitive. Milk chocolate contains less theobromine than dark chocolate. A dog must therefore eat a larger quantity to be affected. White chocolate is the most benign form since it does not contain cocoa powder, the source of theobromine.
The side effects of chocolate ingestion can be observed within a few hours of ingestion and can last for several days. Vomiting and diarrhea are the most common side effects followed by panting, restlessness, hyperactivity and seizures. Sudden death from cardiac arrest can occur, so a dogís exposure to chocolate should receive immediate attention.
If your dog consumes chocolate, call your veterinarian, or a pet poison hotline immediately and report the quantity and variety ingested. If the ingestion is detected early enough, vomiting can be induced and activated charcoal administered to help stop absorption.
Never make chocolate accessible to your dog. Some people will do anything for a chocolate fix. Dogs are no different.
Another substance that is safe for people, yet toxic to dogs is xylitol. It is a sugar alcohol found in many sugar free products such as baked goods, vitamins, mints and many chewing gums. Dogs are particularly sensitive to xylitolís effects on insulin, the bodyís hormone that regulates blood sugar. As a result, after ingesting a xylitol product, a dog can experience a sudden drop in blood sugar and become weak and have seizures. This side effect is fortunately reversible.
Xylitolís effects on a dogís liver are often fatal. There is no antidote for xylitol, but veterinarians can provide supportive care to dogs exposed to this agent. The sooner treatment is administered, the better the chances for survival. Be sure to avoid feeding your dog any products containing xylitol. If you suspect or witness ingestion of an item containing xylitol, contact your veterinarian or poison hotline immediately.
PET POISON HOTLINE 1-800-213-6680
|Please have your pets spayed or neutered!|