Prolonging the Life of a Dog or Cat

What are the most important things an owner can do to prolong the life of their dog or cat?

  • Feed your pet a highly nutritious meat based, whole grain, chemically free diet supplemented with raw meat and steamed vegetables.
  • Perform regular home dental care and bring your pet in for an annual dental prophylaxis.
  • Give your pet a weekly home exam and learn to recognize early signs of illness
  • Learn your pets normal behavior and normal physiology (ie urinating, defecating, eating, drinking, breathing) so that you will recognize when he or she begins to act abnormal.
  • Feed your pet supplements including, digestive enzymes, trace chelated minerals vitamins, probiotics, fatty acids, antioxidants.
  • Maintain your pet at a lean weight and exercise regularly.
  • Provide your veterinarian with a detailed, accurate history whenever your pet becomes ill. Keep a diary
  • Have your veterinarian perform a yearly physical and regular annual blood, urine, and stool screens to obtain a normal base line or to catch hidden problems.
  • Provide fresh air, fresh water, sunshine, love and companionship
  • Widen your concept of health care to encompass alternative medicine

What are the most common mistakes pet owners make with regard to their pets health?

  • If they have a multiple pet household and notice that there is vomiting, diarrhea , or urinating outside the litter box they do not isolate the cats to discover which at is having the problem
  • They mistake straining to urinate for straining to defecate.
  • Poor appetite and weight loss is either not recognized or not taken seriously enough
  • They are so fearful of anesthesia that they never have their pets teeth cleaned
  • They believe that the terms “premium” and “natural” insure their pet is receiving a healthy diet
  • They over feed their pet
  • They do not take repetitive vomiting as seriously as they should
  • They do not allow their veterinary to perform preventive blood and urine screens
  • They do not follow their veterinarians instructions – for example
  • Medications not given at proper frequency
  • Medications not given long enough; they do not come back for refills
  • They do not come in for indicated recheck exams
  • They stop medication when symptoms disappear
  • They use left over medication to treat a new condition that they think is the same as a past condition
  • They give their veterinarian a poor, inaccurate or misleading history (husband or child is sent in with pet without proper information)
  • They have not isolated sick pet from other in house
  • They let sick pet go outside
  • They don’t know which leg pet is lame on
  • They do not bring in past history from previous vet
  • They provide misleading information
  • They are embarassed about their neglect and try to cover up
  • They are poor observers because not home enough, too busy, or multiple pets
  • They misinterpret their observations – ie straining equals constipation
  • They forget important information because they have not written it down
  • They say that the wrong leg is lame because they face the animal and use they right or left rather than the pets.

Symptoms that are often misinterpreted

  • Straining from dairrhea mistaken for straining from constipation
  • Bronchial spasm for retching or vomiting
  • Gagging for coughing
  • Regurgitation for vomiting
  • Straining for urinary obstruction mistaken for constipation
  • Weakness for lameness
  • Neurological lameness for musculoskelat lameness
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