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Pets

We frequently add information and tips for your pets such as first aid, home-made treats, holiday tips and more so check back often!

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Fulfill a Special Needs Wish for Front Range Equine Rescue

He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.  

Author Unknown

 

When choosing a family pet, please consider adopting from your local animal shelter...it'll do your heart good!

"Within the heart of every stray lies the singular desire to be loved"

 

 

~ Pet Safety Tips ~

 

Halloween Safety Tips for Pet Owners

Halloween can be a frightening time for family dogs. Each Halloween, veterinarians nationwide see pet injuries that could have been avoided. Here are some ways we can protect pets:

  1. Walk your dog before trick-or-treaters start their visits. Keep a firm grip on the leash; many dogs are frightened by people in costumes.

  2. Find a secure place in your home to keep your dogs, especially if you're giving out candy to trick-or-treaters. Many dogs get loose when the door opens, and the presence of little (and big) costumed people often scares animals, increasing the chance dogs will run away or get hit by cars.

  3. Make sure your dog is wearing an up-to-date I.D. tag.

  4. Place a dog gate in front of your front door to block access in case someone accidentally lets your pet out of the place where he's confined. Many dogs will run after trick-or-treaters.

  5. If your dog has any aggressive tendencies, fear of loud noises, or a habit of excessive barking, place him in a quiet room as far away from your front door as possible at least a half-hour before trick-or-treaters arrive.

  6. Consider crating your pet, which can make him feel more secure and reduce chances of accidental escapes. Provide chew toys, a favorite blanket, a piece of clothing with your scent on it, or whatever comforts the animal. Play soft music or a recording of soothing sounds.

  7. If you want to have your dog near the door to greet visitors, keep him on leash. Pets can become very stressed by holiday activities and unwelcome interruptions in routine. A nervous dog might feel threatened and growl, lunge or bite.

  8. Keep dogs indoors. It's a bad idea to leave dogs out in the yard; in addition to the parade of holiday celebrants frightening and agitating them, there have been reports of taunting, poisonings and pet thefts. Plus they're likely to bark and howl at the constant flow of treat or treaters.

  9. As for cats, as the ASPCA and other organizations advise, keep cats indoors at all times.

  10. Do not leave dogs in cars.

  11. Keep dogs out of the candy bowl. Dispose of candy wrappers before your pets get to them, since the wrappers can cause choking or intestinal obstruction. Make sure the dogs can't get into the trash. Note: Chocolate contains theobromine, which can cause nerve damage and even death in dogs. The darker the chocolate, the more concentrated it is -- and the smaller the lethal dose.

  12. Explain to everyone in your home (including kids) how dangerous treats are to pets. Take young childrenUs candy supply and put it somewhere out of reach of pets. Caution children about leaving candy wrappers on the floor.

  13. Make sure pets can't reach candles, jack-o-lanterns, decorations or ornaments.

  14. Halloween costumes can annoy animals and pose safety and health hazards...so think twice before dressing up the dog. Make sure the dog can breathe, see and hear, and that the costume is flame retardant. Remove any small or dangling accessories that could be chewed and swallowed. Avoid rubber bands, which can cut off the animal's circulation or, if accidentally left on, can burrow and cut into the animal's skin.

  15. If the animal is very high-strung, consult your vet about tranquilizing for the night.

  16. When walking dogs during or after Halloween, watch carefully for what they might pick up and choke on. Bits of candy and wrappers abound on sidewalks and streets after holidays.

  17. * If you notice these symptoms of chocolate poisoning, go to your vet or an emergency vet right away because your pet's life may be in danger:

  • Excessive drooling

  • Excessive urination

  • Pupil dilation

  • Rapid heartbeat

  • Vomiting and diarrhea

  • Hyperactivity

  • Muscle tremors and seizures

  • Coma

*Click here if your dog has eaten some chocolate

*First Aid Kit and Guidance:  Keep a pet First Aid Kit in your home and car. Take the one you keep in your car with you on trips with your pet. This webpage lists items to include:

CPR and Mouth-to-Snout Resuscitation: Print these life-saving brochures to have on hand!
http://members.aol.com/henryhbk/acpr.html
http://www.rescuecritters.com/cpr.html

 

Please remember your pets count on you for their safety in emergency situations.  They cannot fend for themselves.  Treat them as you would any other member of your family.  Here are a few valuable tips from ASPCA.

Emergency Pet Preparedness

Hurricanes, wildfires, flood...if disaster strikes, are you prepared to protect your pets?  A few simple steps can help ensure you won't be caught off guard.

  Display a Rescue Alert Sticker - A personalized sticker on your front door alerts rescue worker to the type and number of pets indoors. For a free sticker, visit the ASPCA website at www.aspca.org/emergency.

  Arrange a Safe Haven - Should you need to evacuate, have a list of reputable boarding kennels, shelters or local hotels that accept pets or arrange ahead to bring your pets to a friend's home. Red Cross disaster shelters will not accept pets.

   Prepare an Emergency Travel Kit - Store an emergency kit and leashed near your home's exit. Include a pet first-aid kit; a two week supply of pet food, water,  pet medications, food dished, disposable litter trays and photos of your pets (in case your pet is lost and you need to make posters). A flashlight, blanket (handy for scooping up fearful pets) and a carrier or traveling case are also helpful.

   Choose a Designated Caregiver - Give a set of house keys ahead of time to a trusted friend or neighbor in case you're unable to return home to your pets. Arrange for a temporary or long-term foster home in case you cannot care for your pets.

   Prepare Your Pets - Collars and tags with up-to-date contact information are essential for all pets. Bring pets indoors at the first sign or warning of a storm or disaster. Should your animal become lost, know where your local shelters and rescue organizations are located and start looking for a missing pet as soon as possible.

   Prepare Your Home:

  • For high winds: Utility rooms, bathrooms and basements offer safe havens clear of such hazards as windows or flying debris.

  • For loss of electricity: Fill up bathtubs and sinks with fresh water ahead of time.

  • For flooding: Select the highest room in you home that has a counter or shelves where your pet can take shelter.

For more information, to make donations or to report animal cruelty visit the ASPCA Web site at www.aspca.org

Keep Your Pets Safe During Winter

  • Keep your cat inside. Outdoors, cats can freeze, become lost or be stolen, injured or killed

  • During the winter, outdoor cats sometimes sleep under the hoods of cars. When the
    motor is started, the cat can be injured or killed by the fan belt. Before starting the engine, bang loudly on the car hood to give the cat a chance to escape.

  • Never let your dog off the leash on snow or ice, especially during a snowstorm--dogs can lose their scent and easily become lost. More dogs are lost during the winter than during any other season, so make sure they always wear I.D. tags.

  • Thoroughly wipe off your dog's legs and stomach when he comes in out of the sleet, snow or ice. He can ingest salt, antifreeze or other chemicals while licking his paws, and his paw pads may also bleed from snow or encrusted ice.

  • Own a short-haired breed? Consider getting him a coat or sweater with a high collar or turtleneck that covers the dog from the base of the tail on top to the belly underneath. While this may seem like a luxury, it is a necessity for many dogs.

  • Never leave your dog or cat alone in a car during cold weather. A car can act as a refrigerator in the winter, holding in the cold. The animal can freeze to death. If your dog is sensitive to the cold due to age, illness or breed type, take him outdoors only to relieve himself.

  • Puppies do not tolerate the cold as well as adult dogs and may be difficult to housebreak during the winter. If necessary, paper train your puppy inside if he appears to be sensitive to the weather.

  • If your dog spends a lot of time engaged in outdoor activities, increase his supply of food, particularly protein, to keep his fur thick and healthy.

  • Antifreeze, even in very tiny doses is a lethal poison for dogs and cats. Unfortunately, because of its sweet taste, animals are attracted to it. Be sure to thoroughly clean up any spills from your vehicle. To prevent accidental poisoning; more and more people are using animal friendly products that contain propylene glycol rather than traditional products containing ethylene glycol. Call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (1-888-4ANI-HELP) if you suspect your animal has been poisoned

  • During the winter time dogs and cats need just as much water as during the summertime.  Make sure water bowls are not frozen over and never assume they can get their water needs met by eating snow.

Heatstroke

Summertime can be dangerous time to travel with your pet, as the risk of heatstroke is increased. Pets should never be left alone in a completely enclosed car for ANY period of time. Here are some common signs of heatstroke to look out for:

  • Panting and quick, shallow breathing

  • excessive salivation

  • unusually hot body temperature (over 104 degrees)

  • Disorientation

  • Red tongue

  • Vomiting

If you think your pet is suffering from heatstroke, take steps to cool him down immediately. Apply a cool, wet towel to his body and keep him out of sunlight. Give him small doses of water. Even if you pet appears to recover, take him to a veterinarian immediately. A qualified doctor will take the necessary steps to make sure your pet is fully recovered.

 Home Dangers for your Pet

  • Store space heater when they're not in use. Do not let your pet learn to trust a cool heater. The next time the animal approaches, it may get burned. 

  • Screen fireplaces to shield pets that curl up beside them from sparks.

  • Put mesh covering on electric fans to keep curious noses and paws away.

  • Don't leave sewing supplies lying around. Frequently a pet will start to play with thread and end up swallowing a needle. NEVER pull on a thread that's dangling from your pet's mouth. If a needle is swallowed, you can do major damage to your pet by trying to pull on it. Call your vet immediately.

  • Watch for dropped rubber bands and broken balloon pieces around the house, some animals find these things intriguing and may swallow them. They can get lodged in their throats or cause intestinal blockage.

  • Dishes soaking in a sink of hot, sudsy water may result in serious burns for an inquisitive cat or detergent poisoning for a thirsty one.

  • "If is smells, eat it" is the golden rule among pets, especially dogs. They not only get sick when they eat spoiled food and garbage, but they can also choke on scraps of tinfoil, cellophane, etc.  Bones from fish, chicken and other foods can perforate a pet's intestines or become lodged in their throats. Be sure all your garbage is stored in pet-proof containers, inside and outside the house.

  • If you use automatic toilet-bowl cleaners, keep toilet lids down to be sure your pet doesn't drink from the bowl.

  • Both dogs and cats munch grass from time to time, but serious illness can be the consequence if your lawn has been treated with chemicals. Also, insecticide that you pet ingests when it licks his/her paws after an outdoor romp is no less toxic than if it were drunk from the container. If your lawn is cared for by professionals, be certain that they know you have a pet.

  • Many common garden plants are poisonous when pets eat them, including azaleas, oleander, rhododendrons, daffodils and even buttercups. Be sure to look into all aspects of a plant before planting them in your garden. 

  • Antifreeze, battery acid and paint remover are three common and particularly poisonous substances that seem to smell appetizing to pets. Store all three in tight containers out of your pet's reach and be sure to do a thorough cleanup after you finish working with any of them. Antifreeze puddles on driveways or in garages cause the deaths of numerous pets annually.

  • Keep tackle boxes closed and latched. Bright lures, hooks and fishing line can attract cats as well as fish.

  • Don't allow pet birds in the kitchen. Heat, open containers of hot water (on the stove or sink) and smoke can all be health threats.

  • Cover all glass, especially mirrors, if your bird is permitted outside his/her cage. Birds sometimes assume windows and mirrors are open spaces and fly into them.

  • Don't spray fishbowls or aquariums, even on the outside, with glass cleaner that contains ammonium. Vapors can rise and settle back into the bowl or tank, poisoning your fish. Instead, spray the clean on a cloth well away from the water, and then wipe the glass clean.

  • Don't put tap water directly into your aquarium or fishbowl. The chlorine in it can be deadly to fish. Purchase dechlorinating pellets or allow water to sit overnight before adding it to your fish tank. Also, beware of water that's artificially softened. Its salt content may be exceptionally high.

  • Take care when using a household spray or insecticide. Remove birds from the room and cover your aquarium with plastic or some other nonpermeable material until all the spray has settled.

 

Protecting Pets from Poison

 

There are some of those that are under the impression that animals know instinctively to avoid poisons. This is false. They don't, no more than a small child. It is up to us to ensure their safety. 

Plants: Many common plants, including houseplants, can be deadly. For example, Philodendron is extremely dangerous to cats. Crocus, daffodil and hyacinth bulbs are poisonous as are tomato plants and the berries of mistletoe.

Some of the symptoms of poisoning are:

  • Cats will immediately lose interest in their food

  • Both cats and dogs may become lethargic

  • They may drool an unnatural amount

  • Have trouble walking

  • Ultimately they will go into convulsions

  • Depression, unaccountable excitability, diarrhea and shock are also symptoms.

You can tell an animal is going into shock by pressing the animal's gum with your finger. The pink will turn grayish white; when more than a coup of seconds pass before normal color returns, it usually means the onset of shock. An animal in shock will have a weak, rapid pulse and dilated pupils. Under these conditions, do not give anything by mouth. Start artificial respiration if necessary, keep the victim warm and rush him to the veterinarian. Below is a list of common poisons and the first-aid steps to take until professional help is available.  Let's hope you never need to use it.

  • Corrosive acid: Do no induce vomiting. Give milk or water to dilute poison, even if you must force it on the pet. Give orally baking soda, milk of magnesia or some other mild alkaline substance.  Finish the treatment by getting as much edible oil (salad oil, olive oil) and/or egg white into the animal as you can.  (at least one ounce of oil per 20 pounds of body weight).

  • Corrosive Alkali: Do not induce vomiting. Give water or milk to dilute poison. Give a mild acid--Vinegar, lemon, lime or even orange juice. As above, finish the treatment with edible oil or egg whites.

  • Fungicides, herbicides, Insecticides, Most Household Cleaning Agents, Medicines, Lead, Moth balls, Rodenticides, Turpentine, Poisonous Plants and when in doubt as long as you're sure it wasn't a petroleum product, or an acid or an alkali of corrosive strength: Dilute with milk or water. Induce vomiting with hydrogen peroxide, ipecac syrup or table salt (use salt for adult animals only). Read the labels, if available and use the recommended antidotes.

 

Holiday Safety for Pets

 

Curious pets are inclined to eat everything in sight-even if it's as indigestible as a tree ornament. Your pet could get sick or die from swallowing:

  • Sharp objects: Toothpicks, ornament hooks and bottle caps are just as harmful as chicken bones. And when the toothpick is meatball flavored or hook is attached to a candy cane, it's hard for your pet to resist.

  • Large objects: Corks, small toys, tree decorations and fruit pits may be small enough for your pet to swallow, but too big to digest.

  • Stringy objects: The normal twisting of the gut causes long, thin objects to stuck in an animal's intestine. In addition to such year-round hazards as foil, plastic wrap and dental floss, watch out for tinsel, ribbon, yarn and string used for popcorn or cranberry garlands. A mere 4 inches can be life threatening to your pet.

  • Food and Plant hazards: Poinsettia and Jerusalem cherry plants are poisonous to animals. And chocolate Santas can dehydrate your dog and make him vomit. Hook edible ornaments high on your tree and skip the toothpicks (USE PRETZEL STICKS INSTEAD) on the hors d'oeuvres unless you're sure you can keep Rover out of harm's way. If your pet does eat one of the above, call your vet immediately.

  • Rinse alcohol from drink glasses. If ingested, alcohol can make dogs, cats and birds violently ill.

  • Keep birds away from avocados; the coating on the pit is toxic to some species.

  • Keep chocolate away from dogs and birds. Even a small amount can be toxic.

  • Secure garage bags tightly to keep leftover bones, meat and roasting twine out of reach.

 

 

 

 

Traveling with Pets

  • If you want to take your pet on a car trip, first take it for short rides; increase the time on each subsequent trip so it gets used to the car.

  • If your pet is traveling in a carrier, put some of its favorite toys inside to make it feel more secure. Or line the traveling container with an old sweater of yours-- the familiar smell will comfort the animal.

  • Don't feed you pet for six hours before a car trip. If it has a tendency to car sickness, try to avoid giving even water for two hours before you leave home.

  • When you travel with you pet in a car, bring along a plastic freezer container of frozen water. As you travel, the water will thaw and your pet will have a fresh, cool drink ready.

  • If possible, carry water from home for your pet. The different mineral content of water in a new location could give it diarrhea.

  • When traveling with a dog, make sure he/she is on a leash before you get out of the care at your destination. Otherwise, it may get overexcited and jump out of the car and, possibly, get hit by another vehicle.

  • If you're traveling with a cat, keep the carrier firmly closed and don't release the cat until you get indoors. If the cat panics and jumps out of the car in a strange place, you'll have little chance of finding it again.

  • Before traveling with a pet, let the animal get used to the pet carrier. Leave the carrier out where the animal can smell it, explore it and sleep in it.

 

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