Dementia in Dogs: What If Your Dog Forgets Who You Are?

Dog Health News™ - Dementia in DogsSigns of dementia in dogs, also diagnosed as canine cognitive dysfunction (CCD), appear in ways that might go unnoticed or could be misdiagnosed when your dog has accidents in your house or she doesn’t respond to your commands until you repeat yourself several times, and even worse, your dog may wander aimlessly and not recognize you any more, which could frustrate you enough to wonder if your dog should be put down to save her from further decline and reduced quality of life.

This news brief gives you facts about canine dementia including symptoms, possible causes and treatment so you can take better care of your senior dog who actually needs more love and understanding than when she was a puppy.

Dementia in Dogs: 10 Potential Symptoms

  1. Confused – Your dog may seem disoriented and she could also wander around aimlessly in your home or outdoors.  When you look in your dog’s eyes, you may not feel she’s connecting with you the way she did when she was younger.
  2. Anxious  – Your dog’s behavior could change and she might seem nervous, shaky or ill at ease.  You may also notice your dog barks and whimpers at the smallest distractions or changes in her environment.
  3. Lack of appetite  – Your dog may not be interested in her meals and walk away from her food.  If you offer your dog treats, she may ignore them or seem confused.
  4. Sleeplessness – Symptoms of dementia in dogs can also cause your dog to have difficulty sleeping, wander around, whine and seem uncomfortable during the night.
  5. Forgetful – You may need to guide your dog on walks because she Dementia in Dogsmight not remember the route and seem anxious.  Your dog may also require your help to find toys, her water bowl and her favorite place to take a nap.
  6. Less self-grooming – Watch for a decline in self-grooming like licking private parts and paws.  This lack of personal care could be a sign of dementia in dogs.
  7. Incontinence – Senior dogs with dementia may develop incontinence because the messages sent by their brain no longer work well and they can’t control when they urinate or move their bowels.
  8. Less playful – A decline in energy along with a lack of playfulness may be yet another sign of dementia in your dog as she ages.
  9. Irritable – Your dog may have signs of dementia if she’s easily disturbed, nervous or jumpy.
  10. Slow learner – Another subtle sign of dementia could be if your dog doesn’t pick up new clues when you show her how to do something like getting into your car or fetching a toy.

Possible Causes of Cognitive Disfunction and Dementia in Dogs

  • Genetic predisposition to cognitive disfunction.
  • Oxidative stress related to free radical damage to your dog’s brain.
  • Nerve damage from protein build up that blocks signals from your dog’s brain.

Prevention and Treatment

  • Diet – Feed your dog a balanced breed-appropriate diet and keep treats to a minimum so your dog maintains a healthy weight.  Overweight dogs are at higher risk for diseases including dementia.
  • Exercise – Keep your dog active and useful with toys and long walks every day.  The more your dog uses her brain, the better Jesse - Dog Health News - Dementia in Dogschance she will retain her memory and live a longer, healthier life.  Stimulating toys that challenge your dog to think are the best ones to use for your dog at any age.
  • Remedies – Add alpha lipoic acid and grape seed extract as remedies to prevent and treat dementia in dogs.
  • Unconditional love – Be sure to spend time with your senior dog and give her extra care, attention and company.  Your dog is affected by her environment, so positive energy can go a long way to help your senior dog have a better quality of life.
  • Vet visits – Bring your dog to your local vet twice a year for checkups to monitor her progression of symptoms.

This short article covered symptoms causes, prevention and treatment for dogs with dementia so you have the tools you need to keep your dog healthy. 

Share this news brief with your friends and family so they have information on dementia in dogs to help them with their senior dog.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

SPECIAL BONUS — If you would like breaking news on how to NOT overpay for your dog’s healthcare costs and reduce the number of times your dog gets sick, then claim your FREE ACCESS to the “How to Control Your Dog’s Healthcare Costs” video news . Go HERE to get it FREE.

Dog Head Tilt: What’s Right or Wrong About This Habit?

Dog Head TiltDog head tilt normally looks like your dog wants to express herself or she wants to get your attention, however when your dog tilts her head too often, loses her balance and has strange eye movements, you need to bring your dog to your veterinarian immediately for a checkup to see if your dog has underlying health problems that could affect her central nervous system.

This news brief gives you signs to watch for when your dog tilts her head so you know when to take action before your dog’s health is at risk from Ataxia which results in loss of coordination of your dog’s limbs, trunk and head.

Dog Head Tilt: 7 Signs of Ataxia

  1. Tilting head – Your dog may start to have abnormal behavior and tilt her head to one side.  She might have a loss of balance or have vertigo and feel dizzy.  Unusual head movements could indicate nerve damage and discomfort in your dog’s head and neck area.
  2. Hearing loss – Your dog may not react to your vocal commands as quickly as usual and you might realize you have to raise your voice higher to get her attention.
  3. Weak limbs – Your dog may start to favor one leg more than another or have noticeable weakness in one or more limbs.  Even without signs of dog head tilt, your dog might have difficulty on stairs, walking or jumping because her limbs are not strong enough to hold her weight.  In the worst cases, your dog won’t be able to hold her legs up at all.
  4. Stumbling – Although puppies fall over easily, your healthy adult dog should stand up straight on all four legs and have excellent balance.  Bring your dog to your vet if your dog continuously falls over, sways or stumbles.
  5. Drowsiness – If your dog is excessively tired or seems unfocused, she may have health issues related to her head, nerves and brain area with no instances of dog head tilt.  An active dog may get tired, however it’s not normal for your dog to have a low energy level and act like she’s in a stupor.
  6. Appetite loss – Your dog may suffer from motion sickness if she has vertigo or balance problems which can result in nausea and a lack of appetite.
  7. Behavior change – Take your dog to your local veterinarian if your dog’s energy level changes or she shows abnormal behavior.

Cricket Ditty – Challenges and Solutions for Dogs with Ataxia

Dog Head TiltMargaret Ditty discovered her dog Cricket had Ataxia when her 7 year old Chihuahua started losing her balance, falling over and exhibiting moments of exaggerated dog head tilt.  Cricket has Granulomatous Meningoencephalitis (GME) as a result of a vaccination at age 7.  You can learn more about GME from Margaret’s stories on her site, Pet Parents Fighting GME.

These 2 videos show Cricket struggling to stand up on a wood floor and Cricket walking down the hall with her custom designed wheelchair.

3 Types of Ataxia

  1. Sensory – Your dog’s spinal cord becomes compressed gradually.  Symptoms to watch for are when your dog misplaces her feet and her limbs become weak.  This condition can start with cerebral lesions in your dog’s brain near her neck.
  2. Vestibulocochlear – Damage to this nerve in your dog’s inner ear can cause hearing problems, dog head tilt and change your dog’s head and neck position.  Your dog may tend to lean over, tip over and even roll over.
  3. Cerebellar – Your dog may have uncoordinated movement, head tremors and swaying of her body. 

Causes of Ataxia

  • Spinal cord – Your dog’s ataxia may be caused by things like degeneration of nerves, loss of blood from a blood clot, malformation, cancer, as spinal cyst, infections or a trauma to her spinal cord.
  • Metabolic – Your dog may be anemic or have low blood sugar and low potassium levels.
  • Neurologic – Your dog may contract an inflammatory anti-immune disease to her central nervous system.
  • Vestibular – Your dog may get a fungal infection in her middle ear which can affect her peripheral nervous system and lead to dog head tilt.

Diagnosis of Ataxia Symptoms

  • Health history – Whenever your dog shows abnormal behavior, it’s critical to keep a journal so you can give your veterinarian a clear, step by step description of your dog’s illness with actual dates when symptoms were noticed.
  • Tests – Your veterinarian may order tests including blood counts, urinalysis, MRI and X-rays to determine if your dog has cancer.  Your dog may need an ultrasound to check her pancreas, liver and kidney function.
  • Expenses – 
  • If you have dog health insurance, some of your expenses may be covered, however you can expect initial bills to add up to over $3,000 if your dog has Ataxia.

Treatment for Your Dog with Ataxia and Dog Head Tilt

  • Drugs –  Consult with your veterinarian about drugs to treat your dog with Ataxia if your dog experiences pain from inflammation.  Ask your vet about alternative medicines and all potential side effects.
  • Exercise – Your dog’s motor skills may be limited and you might need to make changes in your home to help your dog from sliding on slippery floors. 
  • Products – Look into products that might help your dog grip the floor better or dog wheelchairs that allow your dog more mobility.

This news brief gives you information about symptoms, causes, diagnosis and treatment of Ataxia so you can take better care of your dog.  Much thanks to Margaret Ditty and Cricket for the work they are doing to help dog parents.  Awareness of signs of diseases can make a huge difference because you’ll know when to bring your dog to your local vet or emergency animal hospital if needed.

Share this article with your friends and family so they can watch for signs of abnormal or excessive dog head tilt in their dog.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

By the way… claim your FREE “How NOT to Overpay to Keep Your Dog Well” video news.  Just go HERE now to get your Dog Health and Wellness Video News.

Dog Vaccination Schedule ~ Dosage and Dog Health Risks

Dog Vaccination ScheduleYour dog vaccination schedule is reviewed when you and millions of responsible dog owners bring your dog to your local veterinarian for your dog’s annual wellness visit.  Over the years, most dog owners leave it up to their vet to make the decision on what vaccines are necessary and how often their dog should be vaccinated, however there is not enough attention paid to serious side effects which can permanently harm your dog’s health from over-vaccinating.

This short video with Margaret Ditty and her dog, Cricket, gives you all the information you need to ask more questions about your dog’s next shot so you can keep your dog healthy.

Your Dog Vaccination Schedule: 3 Key Questions to Ask Your Veterinarian

Dog Vaccination ScheduleYou’ll hear Margaret Ditty’s gripping story about her Chihuahua named Cricket in the interview below.  Margaret is the founder of Pet Parents Fighting GME.  If you own a toy breed, your dog is more prone to this disease, however no breed is exempt. 

3 Key Questions to Ask:

  1. Does my dog need this vaccination?
  2. Is the dosage safe for my dog’s breed, size and age?
  3. Can I have a titer test to determine if my dog needs this vaccination?

Cricket’s disease, Granulomatous Meningoencephalitis (GME) is an inflammatory auto-immune disease that affects her central nervous system.

Margaret Ditty and Cricket on Dog Health News TV

You can go to Pet Parents Fighting GME for more information and also read Cricket’s story to get further details.

This news brief about your dog vaccination schedule helps you to ask more questions about vaccines and consider alternative ways to care for your dog’s health.  Margaret Ditty’s story about Cricket shows you one dog out of millions who suffer from the results of too many vaccines, incorrect dosage of vaccines and medications, and lack of information about symptoms.  Awareness of symptoms related to dog health illnesses along with fast action might save your dog’s life.

Dog Vaccination ScheduleShare this article and interview with your friends and family or anyone you feel would benefit from Cricket’s story so they can help protect their dog from chronic health diseases like GME.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

SPECIAL BONUS — If you would like more video news on how to Keep Your Dog Well and NOT overpay for it, then claim your FREE ACCESS to the “How to Cost Effectively Keep Your Dog Well” video news. Go HERE to get it FREE.

Can Dogs Eat Lemons? You May Be Surprised By The Answer

IMG_1507Can dogs eat lemons or will your dog scrunch up his face and run the other way after you squeeze tangy lemon juice into his water bowl, because your dog may not like the zesty taste of lemon added to his favorite beverage, and even worse, your dog might avoid his water bowl altogether if he doesn’t like the taste.

This news brief gives you 10 reasons to run out to your grocery store and buy a large bag of lemons to help keep your dog healthy and add lemons to your entire household’s daily diet or skin care treatment.

Can Dogs Eat Lemons?  10 Reasons Lemons Keep Your Dog Healthy

  1. Alkalizer – Lemon juice alkalizes your dog’s pH level and can relieve the pain of arthritis.
  2. Anti-Oxidant – Lemon juice fights against aging, bacteria, cancer and tumors.  You can add lemon peel to your dog’s food to help keep your dog’s brain healthy and make your dog calm.
  3. Bad Breath – You can squeeze 1 or 2 drops of lemon juice in your dog’s water bowl and see how he likes it.  The lemon juice may help to keep your dog’s breath smelling sweeter.  Can dogs eat lemons?  We don’t recommend that your dog eat a whole lemon, of course.  Also, be sure to remove the seeds when you give your dog any fresh lemon juice.
  4. Cleanser – You can add lemon juice to your dog’s shampoo or to give your dog a good cleansing.  Another way to give your dog a rinse is to use a quarter cup of lemon juice and 2 or 3 quarts of homemade room temperature green tea.  If you’re worried about toxic chemicals in your household cleansers, you can use fresh lemon juice and organic apple cider instead. Can dogs eat lemons? Yes they can, and this means they can lick your floor if you washed it with lemon juice.
  5. Ear Infections – You can mix a teaspoon of fresh lemon juice with a pint of distilled water and use a soft cloth or cotton ball to wipe out your dog’s ears and keep them clean.  For ear infections, use a mixture of 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice and 3 tablespoons distilled water.  Put 2 or 3 drops of this mixture in your dog’s ears to help heal ear infections or get rid of ear mites.
  6. Eye Wash – You can mix 1/8 teaspoon of fresh lemon juice with 3 tablespoons of distilled water and put 2 or 3 drops in your dog’s eyes to treat an eye infection.  Warning:  Don’t use this lemon juice solution for pink eye because your dog may have conjunctivitis which is highly contagious.  Check with your veterinarian before you use lemon juice for your dog’s eye infections.
  7. Flea Repellant – Can dogs eat lemons and will that help with flea prevention?  The jury is out on the internal benefits of lemon juice to keep fleas away from your dog.  However, you can make a homemade spray with fresh lemon juice and water to help your Can Dogs Eat Lemonsdog fight off fleas.  Although lemon juice spray will not kill fleas, it may keep fleas away from your dog because fleas don’t like the smell or taste of lemons.  Rub lemon oil into your dog’s skin to increase the flea repellant strength of lemon as long as your dog doesn’t have any skin irritations or sensitivities.
  8. Frostbite – You can apply lemon oil to the tips of your dog’s ears to help prevent frostbite in cold weather.
  9. Miscellaneous Benefits – Dental health, detoxification, digestion, immunity booster, liver health, parasite prevention, urinary tract infections.
  10. Can dogs eat lemons? – The most important point is that a small amount of lemon juice or any part of a lemon is good for your dog’s health.  If you can add lemon juice or lemon peel to one of your dog’s meals every day, you may help your dog increase his immunity and stay healthier.  

Can Dogs Eat Lemons

Note:  Dog Health News suggests that you use fresh lemons only and does not recommend the use of bottled pasteurized lemon juice because the healthy properties of lemons may be compromised in the processing.  Be sure to keep lemon juice, oil or spray away from your dog’s eyes and any open wounds because lemon juice stings and can irritate your dog’s eyes.

This news brief gives you 10 reasons to add some lemon to your dog’s diet or use lemon juice and lemon oil as a topical treatment to keep your dog healthy or free of fleas. Can dogs eat lemons?  Remember to keep the amounts of lemon juice appropriate for your dog’s size.  With all these benefits for your dog, you can feel free to use the lemons in your kitchen as an inexpensive strategy for dog health.

Share this article with your friends and family so they have the benefits of lemons and lemon oil for their dog.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

SPECIAL BONUS — If you would like breaking news on how to NOT overpay for your dog’s healthcare costs and reduce the number of times your dog gets sick, then claim your FREE ACCESS to the “How to Control Your Dog’s Healthcare Costs” video news . Go HERE to get it FREE.

Puppy Training Classes: Is Your Dog’s Behavior Healthy?

Puppy Training ClassesPuppy training classes can provide the best environment for your dog to learn how to socialize with dogs and people as long as you choose a professional trainer who uses positive training practices that don’t harm your dog physically and emotionally.

Because of the importance of early puppy training, Dog Health News asked Anne Springer, B.A. PCT-A, CTDI, CAPCT, VA, owner of Paws for Praise to be our guest on our new podcast series, Sit.Stay.Listen.  Anne’s extensive background covers all aspects of dog health including training, grooming, animal welfare.

Puppy Training Classes: Anne Springer’s Methods and Philosophy

This short podcast gives you Anne Springer’s approach to puppy training and how her methods work.  Anne also talks about dog behavioral health, positive training and evidence based training.  You can learn more about Anne Springer on Paws for Praise.

Sit Stay Listen Podcast Anne Springer

You can find Anne Springer’s podcast and more on Sit.Stay.Listen.  Share this article and Anne’s podcast with your friends and family so they can take better care of their dog.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

Hope you took some great value out of this puppy training classes post today! I’d love to hear your feedback, so make sure you leave a comment with your thoughts or questions. Also, you can click on the social media links below to share this article… Thank you!

Autoimmune Disease in Dogs: Why GME Awareness is Vital

Autoimmune Disease in Dogs Autoimmune disease in dogs may attack different parts of your dog’s body, however, when it strikes your dog’s central nervous system, this condition can be life-threatening and some symptoms of Granulomatous Meningoencephalitis (GME) often cause severe suffering like chronic migraines that require high doses of medication to help lower your dog’s threshold of pain.

This article gives you a heart wrenching account of a dog named Cricket Ditty and her challenges with GME told by her pet parent and our guest blogger, Margaret Ditty.  When Dog Health News read about Cricket’s condition, we decided that her story needs to be heard far and wide to spread awareness about this disease.

Autoimmune Disease in Dogs: Cricket Ditty – One Dog’s Fight Against GME & NME

Margaret Ditty has kindly shared Cricket’s story so you can understand all aspects of GME & NME.

Cricket was born in January 2009 and just turned 7 years old.   She’s a  fawn colored, female, Applehead Toy Chihuahua with papers.  One weekend I had wandered into a local pet store when I saw this precious little furbaby in her pet store cage.  She looked at me, wagged her tail and woofed at me.  She had me at “woof”. 

Pet store dogs aren’t cheap and her going price was $1,300.00.  I asked the pet store worker if I could visit with her in their visiting area and she brought her to me.  She was a mere 2-½ pounds of sheer cuteness.  She was loaded with personality and spunk and not shaky like most Chihuahuas.  So I called the hubby and begged him to let me purchase her.  She could be every present for the entire year that he would have to purchase for me.  Finally my husband caved in to my pleas, even though we already have a Miniature Pinscher with heart problems at home.  I never purchased pet insurance as I always put away funds in a special pet account for my dogs figuring that my monthly contribution would be enough to cover shots and annual exams myself. Big mistake.

Autoimmune Disease in DogsCricket’s first 7 years of life were wonderful.  No health issues whatsoever.  Then poof, in October of 2015 she started showing some unusual health symptoms that we were concerned about.  She seemed to be having some vision loss and she was walking a bit differently.  We took Cricket to our vet and he thought it might be a middle ear infection, prescribed ear drops and told us to use as needed.  Just two weeks later she received her annual shots, but no rabies vaccination due yet.  Another big mistake. 

From that moment on we saw a decline in Cricket’s health.  Reports say that GME, an autoimmune disease in dogs, is idiopathic in nature which means no known reason it occurs, but they are finding that toy breeds are more susceptible to this disease but not sure why.  In December, Cricket could still walk up and down the stairs, but by January she refused to go up or down the stairs.  She wasn’t as spunky and she was bumping into things that she normally would not bump into before. 

We thought Cricket might have diabetes as she wasn’t seeing very well.  This time I took her to the Animal Hospital that ran a CBC blood panel and specifically checked for diabetes.  They noted that Cricket could not walk very well, definitely could not see very well, and said she was almost blind.  After the blood work came back they found that Cricket had a severe bladder infection and put her on antibiotics and an anti-inflammatory medication.  She seemed to be getting better as apparently the anti-inflammatory medication was helping with the inflammation in her brain from the undiagnosed GME, an autoimmune disease in dogs.  Then a week later, after she had finished this medication, Cricket started getting worse. 

We took Cricket back to our local Animal Hospital who determined she indeed was having neurological problems and referred us to a canine neurologist located in Richmond, Virginia, the only one in our entire state.  We made the 2-½ hour trip one way as soon as they could fit us in. 

Cricket was in bad shape by the time we visited the neurologist at as she had been fighting this disease since October of 2015, unbeknownst to us and our educated vets!   Dr. Michael Higginbotham DVM DACVIM, with Bush Veterinary Neurology Service in Richmond, Virginia, examined her and determined she needed an MRI and possibly a spinal tap which cost us $3,200.00 .  After he completed the MRI he determined, due to the Chiari-like malformation in the back of her brain, she could not undergo a spinal tap as it would kill her. 

Autoimmune Disease in DogsThe MRI showed that Cricket had massive necrosis in the brain and Dr. Higginbotham determined she not only had GME but NME, which was due to her delayed diagnosis and treatment of this autoimmune disease in dogs.  Necrosis is when the white cells eat up parts of the brain, leave lesions and empty cavities in the brain that then are filled up with fluids, which in turn cause even more inflammation in the brain.  To save her life he had to hospitalize her overnight with Chemo Treatments via IV.  So that’s exactly what we did.  We hospitalized her to get her better and took her home the next day.

Cricket looked extremely weak and tired, not because of the Chemo as dogs react differently than humans when receiving this treatment, but due to the debilitating migraines which can be the most painful effects of this disease in the brain. 

We came home and gave Cricket the high dose of prednisone they told us to give her every 12 hours.   Although this drug helps bring down the inflammation in your dog’s brain, it has many side effects including weight gain, excessive thirst and a pot belly.  Then about a week later she was reduced to 2.5 mg twice a day and put on Cyclosporine, which is a drug used for humans to keep them from rejecting transplanted organs. Cyclosporine helps reduce your dog’s white blood cells from attacking your dog’s brain any further.  This med costs $156.00 per month! 

Autoimmune Disease in DogsA month later, Cricket did not seem to be getting any better so we had to drive up to Richmond for yet another $175.00 visit.  Dr. Higginbotham wanted to hospitalize Cricket for 4 days that would have run another $2,200.00 which we did not have.  After I broke down and cried in front of the neurologist, he cut us a break.  For an additional $156.00, he sent her home with a two day supply of Chemo that my local vet would have to give to Cricket. 

I just cried all the way home holding that Chemo in my hand like it was gold since it was apparently life saving for my precious Cricket.  My local vet administered the Chemo and Cricket seemed to start getting better.  In about 10 days, we had to bring her back for another CBC to check her white cells. 

Since Cricket was not stable on any type of wood or tile flooring throughout my home; we put down all kinds of throw rugs in the family room and put up gates to the entrance and exits.  My husband also made Cricket a doggy walker out of PVC pipe and I sewed the body support to her walker so she could walk on the kitchen tile floors without falling.  This worked and it gave her greater mobility and security on the floors. 

To help Cricket regain some strength, I bought a doggy life jacket and proceeded to do water therapy in our bathtub which seems to help control her weight gain from the prednisone and gives her more muscle strength.  Our vet thought it was an excellent idea, so I continue doing this to help rehabilitate her with hope that Cricket’s brain can re-channel the neurological damage she’s suffered from this autoimmune disease in dogs and learn to walk on floors without slipping. 

Unfortunately, Cricket didn’t seem like she was getting any better, meaning her old self, and we had to take her back to the neurologist. Dr. Higginbotham gave her 10 mg of Lomustine, a very strong Chemo Therapy in pill form.  This treatment was $456.00.  Needless to say we are hemorrhaging vet bills to save her precious little life!  This does not include the checkups with our local vet and all the additional blood work to check her white blood cell counts and to check for liver problems from the prednisone!    She seems to be doing better since this last treatment, however she still slips on floors and has good and bad days due to the neurological damage to her brain from the delayed diagnosis and treatment of this autoimmune disease in dogs.

During this whole journey I joined a support group on Facebook to learn more about GME, and then I created my own group.  I personally created a GME Awareness Pamphlet that I am passing out to every person I meet at drive-thru windows, inside local pet stores and veterinarian practices, at stores or to dog owners out walking their dog.  Members of my site are passing my GME Awareness Pamphlets out as well, and some members live outside of the US!  I also created a GME & NME Awareness Video that features many dogs on these sites that are going through this horrible disease, and the pet parents who are shelling out thousands and thousands of dollars to help treat and save their pets lives. We are sharing this video with every doggy website on Facebook. 

Autoimmune Disease in Dogs

It’s been an amazing but heart breaking journey.  I’ve learned a lot about autoimmune disease in dogs and made many precious friends on these sites who are going through the same health crisis with their beloved furbabys!  They’re amazing to know and truly an inspiration of commitment and courage towards the love of their precious furbabys. 

I want to spread awareness about GME and NME to other pet parents to help save them the pain that they and their dogs could go through if not treated early.  Some dogs can die within 24 to 48 hours of diagnosis because many vets are unfamiliar with this disease to the central nervous system.  Your dog may have some or all of these symptoms.

Symptoms of GME 

•Head Pressing: Dog will press their head against things

Autoimmune Disease in Dogs•Weakness in legs

•Behavior changes

•Circling

•Seizures

•Blindness

•Drowsiness

•Head tilting

•Unsteady walk or gait

I want to bring awareness about GME and NME to pet parents of toy breeds because your dogs are at greater risk of this autoimmune disease.  Annual vaccine shots given to toy breeds at the same dose for a 125 pound dog cause your toy breed’s autoimmune system to “melt down”. This high vaccine dose is like throwing fuel on embers of an already slow burning fire existing in toy breeds!  After your initial puppy shots in the first year of your dog’s life, I recommend you have your local vet administer a titer test prior to any additional annual shots!  A titer test will determine if your dog has sufficient antibodies against current dog diseases and if they do, you DO NOT have to perform an annual shot with the exception of Rabies, which is required every three years per state law.   If you currently have a GME or NME dog, remember that your dog must be healthy enough to receive further vaccinations, which they usually are not and are EXEMPT from further annual shots to include rabies.  Ask your vet to use a big red marker on your pets file that says “NO FURTHER SHOTS REQUIRED.”  A re-vaccination of a GME & NME dog would mean certain death!

My biggest advice to any pet parent today is, “If you own a pet, be sure to sign up for pet insurance immediately!”  You cannot possibly imagine how much you will pay when trying to help your dog with a life threatening autoimmune disease in dogs like GME or NME.  It’s horrific, and you feel like you are at your VET’s mercy because the other option of putting down your beloved furbaby is not an option if they are a member of your family.  Pets, to some people, are just as much a part of your family as your own biological children.  Some of us commit to them for life as they mean that much to us as they truly are man’s best friend, full of love and devotion for you.  Do they deserve any less than the best medical care that anybody else in your family would deserve?  I say “No they don’t” and for loves sake I will fight the fight and bring awareness with every ounce of my being and with all my heart!  Thank you for allowing me to share Cricket’s story and bring awareness! 

Autoimmune Disease in DogsWarmest Regards,

Margaret Ditty

Pet Parent to Cricket Ditty

Remember to always, “Educate, Encourage and Share”

You can find Margaret Ditty on Facebook and at Pet Parents Fighting NME & GME “Educate, Encourage, Share”.  You can also join her group to stay up to date with Cricket’s condition and learn more from other members of her group.  All photos in this article are of Cricket Ditty and were provided by Margaret Ditty.

This article gives you a full disclosure about Cricket Ditty’s fight against GME and NME, an autoimmune disease in dogs, so you can take better care of your dog. Dog Health News is honored to have Margaret Ditty’s trust to share Cricket’s story and acknowledges the incredible strength Cricket has while she deals with the effects of this disease.  Margaret Ditty’s passion to spread awareness about GME and NME is unstoppable.

Share Cricket Ditty’s story with your friends and family so they understand the symptoms and challenges of this potentially deadly disease with no known cause.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

By the way… claim your FREE “How NOT to Overpay to Keep Your Dog Well” video news.  Just go HERE now to get your Dog Health and Wellness Video News.

Dog Anatomy: 9 Key Differences Between You and Your Dog

Dog AnatomyDog anatomy quizzes for dog owners could sound like a fun game or a good test of your knowledge, however you may be surprised when you discover how much you don’t know about your dog’s body and the way your dog metabolizes her food, so you might want to brush up on your dog’s physiology before you put your dog at risk in case you think your dog is built just like you.

This news brief gives you 9 main contrasts that separate you from your dog so you can take better care of your dog.

Dog Anatomy 101: 9 Ways Your Dog Differs from You

  1. Body, Skin and Fur – This characteristic may be obvious, however your dog’s size and shape makes her quite different than you.  Your dog’s weight can go from a tiny toy poodle at 5 pounds to a Great Dane that stands as high as 4 feet and hits the scale at 200 pounds.  Even if you and your dog match in weight, your dog’s other body characteristics are strictly canine. Your dog’s skin is layered and much thinner than yours.  Shedding is another big difference in dog anatomy and is common to most dogs.  Fur helps insulate your dog in cold weather.  If your dog has hair, she’s better suited for warmer climates because her hair acts as a sunshade.
  2. Mobility – Your dog is more like a horse because she can change her pace from a walk to a full gallop on all four legs.  If your dog loves to swim like a Golden Retriever, you can see the difference in the dog paddle technique she uses to move through the water.
  3. Life Span – Your dog’s metabolism runs much faster than yours which shortens her life span.  This means that your dog breathes faster at 20 – 30 breaths per minute, her blood pumps faster at 65 – 120 beats per minute, and her body temperature is higher at an average of 102 degrees Fahrenheit.  Your dog sweats by panting and through her paw pads, but not through her skin. It’s important for you to understand the dangers of dehydration and heat stroke based on dog anatomy and the high rate of your dog’s metabolism.
  4. Sight – Your dog has better night vision, and sees motion much better than you because of a reflective layer in your dog’s eyes.  You can see this layer, called the Tapetum Lucidum, at night Dog Anatomywhen car headlights shine into your dog’s eyes and show a greenish glimmer.  Your dog has fewer cones in her retina which cuts down on her ability to see detail and colors as well as you.  For protection in dog anatomy, your dog also has a third eyelid called the nicitating membrane.
  5. Hearing – Your dog’s sense of hearing is 4 times better than yours because of her extra long ear canal.  Some of the health challenges are ear infections, wax buildup and lack of ventilation to your dog’s ear canal if your dog has long floppy ears.
  6. Taste and Smell – Believe it or not, your dog’s taste buds are much weaker than yours, so you don’t really have to worry about variety in her food.  Your dog’s sense of smell is about a million times better than yours and that’s why your dog’s nose is so sensitive.  Take care to remember dog anatomy characteristics for your dog when you cook, clean your home and use fragrances of any kind.
  7. Teeth – Your dog has 42 teeth compared to your 32 teeth.  The front teeth are incisors and canines used to grasp and tear food.  The back molars and premolars are used to grind your dog’s food.
  8. Urinary Tract and Digestion – Because your dog is less Dog Anatomydiscriminating about what she eats, it can affect her digestion and elimination process and be hard for you to detect.  Watch for straining, vomiting, diarrhea and discolored urine.  Bring your dog to your veterinarian if you see blood in your dog’s urine or feces. 
  9. Anal Gland – Your dog has 2 anal glands that often fill up and put pressure on your dog’s body and may become infected.  You may notice your dog scoot along the ground from time to time.  Be sure to have your veterinarian look at these glands on your dog to see if they need to be emptied.

This news brief on dog anatomy highlights the differences between you and your dog so you can better understand your dog’s behavior and physiology.

Share this article with your friends and family so they have the information they need to take better care of their dog.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

SPECIAL BONUS — If you would like breaking news on how to NOT overpay for your dog’s healthcare costs and reduce the number of times your dog gets sick, then claim your FREE ACCESS to the “How to Control Your Dog’s Healthcare Costs” video news . Go HERE to get it FREE.

Dog Saliva: Is There Anything You Can Do About Drool?

Dog Saliva Dog saliva and puddles of drool left by your dog could result in a messy love/hate relationship unless you completely understand that certain dog breeds drool more than others even though they cover you with slobbering affection and have a lovable personality, so you may need to be prepared for your dog’s slippery saliva in your home before you your dog ruins your furniture, hard wood floors and soaks your bed.

This news brief gives you 3 suggestions to handle your dog’s saliva that may save your furniture  and ease your frustration with your dog’s drool.

Dog Saliva: 3 Ways to Control Your Dog’s Slobber

  1. Towels – You may want to keep fresh clean towels available in every room that your dog has access to so you can control your dog’s drool.  All dogs drool, however the breeds that drool the most can be high maintenance in this area.
  2. Bibs – You may want to try a bib on your dog to catch his saliva when he’s indoors or when guests come over.  A bib may not really be the perfect solution because your dog’s slobber might just slide off and not stick to the bib.
  3. Tiles – You may want to restrict your drooling dog to an area in your home with tile floors that are easy to mop up dog saliva and keep clean. This seemingly simple strategy will be difficult to implement because your drooling dog most likely wants to be right by your side.

Dog Drool: Normal and Excessive Symptoms

  • Normal dog drool helps your dog digest his food.  Your dog’s saliva is rich with enzymes and antibacterial agents that lubricate your dog’s mouth and food. If your dog is a big drooler he Dog Salivaprobably falls into the breeds that have deep lips where saliva collects. And, as soon as your dog thinks about food he starts drooling.
  • Excessive drool, or ptyalism, may be caused by the following:
  1. Dental issues – Your dog may have an abscessed or broken tooth, gingivitis, an infection or inflammation in his mouth that will increase the production of dog saliva.
  2. Gastric Dilation and Volvulus (GVD) – Your dog may have a twisted stomach and distended abdomen.  If your dog shows these symptoms, immediately take him to your local animal emergency hospital.
  3. Flu – Your dog may have a cold or respiratory infection that gives him a stuffed nose and sore throat which can cause excessive drooling.
  4. Heat Stroke – If your dog is panting and drooling excessively on a hot day, he may be suffering from heat stroke.  Take your dog to your veterinarian right away because heat stroke and dehydration can be deadly for your dog.
  5. Injuries – You may notice more dog saliva if your dog has an injury in his mouth, throat or lungs.  You can check your dog’s mouth for blood stains with a small cotton face cloth.  An internal injury may be bleeding ulcers.
  6. Kidney and liver disease – If your dog has damage to his liver or kidney, he may start to drool more than usual.
  7. Pain – Your dog may have stomach or joint pain that causes him to be stressed which may result in excessive drooling.
  8. Toxic poisoning – Your dog may have ingested a toxic substance that irritates his intestines and affects your dog’s ability to swallow.  Bring your dog to your local animal emergency hospital right away if you suspect your dog may have eaten or swallowed anything toxic.
  9. Tumors – Check your dog for lumps and bumps all over his body.  Excessive dog saliva can be one of the symptoms when dogs have benign and cancerous tumors.

10 Dog Breeds that Drool the Most

  1. Bernese Mountain Dog
  2. Black and Tan Coon Hound
  3. Dog SalivaBloodhound
  4. Bull Terrier
  5. Bulldog
  6. Great Dane
  7. Great Pyrenees
  8. Mastiff
  9. Newfoundland
  10. Saint Bernard

10 Dog Breeds that Drool the Least

  1. Australian Cattle Dog
  2. Dog SalivaBasenji
  3. Cardigan Welsh Corgi
  4. Chihuahua
  5. Dachshund
  6. Doberman
  7. Greyhound
  8. Old English Sheepdog
  9. Papillon
  10. Standard Poodle

This news brief gives you the facts about dog drool so you can be prepared to mop up after a big drooler and also be aware of the symptoms for excessive drooling that may be a sign your dog has health problems.

Share this article with your friends and family so they know how to handle their dog’s saliva before they drown in their dog’s drool.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

Hey, was that fun?  If you want more, subscribe to our podcasts on Sit.Stay.Listen.

By the way… claim your FREE “How NOT to Overpay to Keep Your Dog Well” video news.  Just go HERE now to get your Dog Health and Wellness Video News.

Doggy Doo: 3 Vital Dog Poop Health Tips for Our Times

Doggy DooDoggy doo might not seem important when you fall in love with your cuddly pup, however your dog owner tasks always include daily dog poop management in all kinds of weather even if you’re as sick as dog, in a mad rush to get to an appointment or even worse, you just had fight with your best friend, so you may want to have a foolproof system to pick up your dog’s poop that won’t allow you to shirk your responsibility and suffer the guilt of leaving your dog’s poop where it landed.

This news brief gives you 3 rules of conduct to guide you in your daily dog waste removal routine for your dog’s welfare, community health and common courtesy.

Doggy Doo: 3 Powerful Points about Dog Poop Disposal

  1. Bag It – There are no exceptions when it comes to dog poop pick up unless your dog poops when you’re not looking.  Your dog usually needs to relieve himself after he eats, so you may want to walk your dog about 30 minutes after every meal.  You can choose any method you like from plastic bags to pooper scoopers Doggie Dooto pick up your dog’s waste.  Your dog’s feces could contain parasites and diseases like roundworm, salmonella and E.coli.  Watch for these symptoms in dogs and people: high fever, vomiting, diarrhea, and rashes.  The bacteria in doggy doo can infect anyone in your household including children and pets.
  2. Dispose It – You want to find the closest trash can and deposit your dog’s waste after pick up or bring it home with you and toss it in your trash.  Dog poop pollutes your city or town’s sewer system which leads to streams, rivers and creeks.  Rats are attracted to your dog’s feces if left out in your yard, streets, parks and beaches.  Flies lay their eggs in dog poop and can easily spread diseases after contact with infected feces.
  3. Respect It – Your community and your neighbor’s property deserve your respect when it comes to your doggy doo.  The best strategy would be to train your dog to poop in an area that’s easy to monitor and does not jeopardize your neighbor’s lawn or Doggy Doopublic properties.  Dog ownership definitely includes responsibility for your dog’s health and his behavior outdoors in your community. 

Benefits of Your Dog Poop Disposal

  • Reduced water pollution
  • Reduced transmission of harmful organisms like Giardia, E.coli and Salmonella
  • Reduction of nitrogen from animal waste in water increases oxygen for fish, wildlife and grasses.
  • Reduction of roundworms and hookworms in your soil that can be transmitted to animals and people.

This news brief gives you the most important reasons for the meticulous job of doggy doo disposal so you can make a difference to prevent pollution and health issues for your dog, your family and your community.

Share this article with your friends and family to spread awareness about the benefits of picking up dog waste.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

SPECIAL BONUS — If you would like breaking news on how to NOT overpay for your dog’s healthcare costs and reduce the number of times your dog gets sick, then claim your FREE ACCESS to the “How to Control Your Dog’s Healthcare Costs” video news . Go HERE to get it FREE.

Dog Walker Risks: Are You Distracted by These 4 Things?

Dog WalkerDog walker distractions without warning can cause complicated challenges when you have one or more dogs who pull you from side to side while you try to avoid obstacles like dips in the pavement, people with dogs or friendly pedestrians, so you may want to focus more on your dog’s safety to prevent accidents or injuries from a fall or even worse, you or your dog could get hit by a car because you weren’t paying 100% attention to your environment and your dog.

This news brief gives you 4 simple things you can stop doing when you’re out for a walk with your dog that will help keep you and your dog safer and out of harms way.

4 Dog Walker Distractions That Put Your Dog at Risk

  1. Food and Beverages – Even if you’re good at balancing, it’s really hard to control your dog with one hand on his leash and your other hand on a cup of coffee, sandwich or ice cream cone.  Your dog could easily get burned by a hot drink, grab your sandwich or take a bite off your ice cream before you even blink an eye.  The best solution is to sit with your dog when you have a beverage or food and leave your cups and wrappers in the trash before you resume your walk.
  2. Texting – As a dog walker, you may suffer from separation anxiety if you can’t see your smart phone in your hand, however your dog will be 20 times safer if you put your phone in your pocket, leave it home, or only text when you’re not walking with Dog Walkeryour dog.  In the 5 seconds it takes to send a text message, your eyes are not on your dog and you could easily miss dangers like oncoming traffic or a driver who runs a red light as you’re crossing the street with your dog.
  3. Smoking – Second hand smoke can affect your dog’s lungs or asthma condition and make it hard for your dog to breathe.  Your cigarette, cigar or pipe smoke gets absorbed in your dog’s fur and skin like it does on your clothes.  If you’re a smoker and a dog walker, you might be putting your dog at risk for health issues like cancer and lung disease.  When you hold a lit cigarette in your free hand, it also takes your attention away from your dog.  Consider your dog’s health and avoid smoking inside your home and when you walk your dog.
  4. Detachment – If you’re extremely distraught and preoccupied with something that’s going on in your life, don’t take your dog for a walk until you can really focus on your dog’s safety.  Your thoughts can be a powerful distraction and capture your attention so completely that you won’t hear noises like car horns and you may not notice a red light when you are at a crosswalk.  Detachment means you are not totally present with your senses.  The dangers for you and your dog increase if your reflexes aren’t quick enough to save you and your dog from an accident or injury.

4 Ways to Reduce Dog Walker Distraction

  1. Focus – Keep your eyes on your dog and don’t attempt to multi-task when you walk with your dog. Look straight ahead of you and watch for approaching traffic so you can avoid bumping into people, other dogs, objects and cars that may pull into or out of parking lots.
  2. Crosswalks – Use the buttons that change the traffic light to red before you cross the street with your dog.
  3. Headphones – Lower the volume so you can also hear traffic and voices around you.
  4. Relax – Plan your walks with your dog so you have everything you need to pick up after your dog and enjoy the time you have outdoors. 

Dog WalkerThe information in this short news brief is based on observations of dog walker behavior when people are distracted by their phone, food, beverage, cigarette or they are in deep  thought and unfocused.  These distractions can pose risks for your dog’s well being.

Share this article with your friends and family so they understand the importance of removing distractions when they walk their dog.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

Hope you took some great value out of this post today! I’d love to hear your feedback, so make sure you leave a comment with your thoughts or questions. Also, you can click on the social media links below to share this article… Thank you!

FREE DOG WELLNESS VIDEOS: The Secrets To Keeping Your Dog Well And Reducing Your Vet Bills
Free Instant Access