Degenerative Myelopathy in Dogs: Proven Home Care Tips

Degenerative Myelopathy in DogsDegenerative Myelopathy in dogs appears to be similar to Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) in humans and affects your dog’s brain and spinal cord nerves which results in your dog’s progressive disease… that means you’ll need to be prepared for expenses like physical therapy, anti-inflammatory drugs, or a wheelchair and even worse you’ll be faced with challenges that include the physical and emotional burden to care for your handicapped dog.

This dog health article gives you firsthand proven ways to successfully care for your dog with degenerative myelopathy (DM).  I hope Paul Konowicz’ tips which are based his and his wife Sharon’s personal experience with Justice, their beloved Boxer, will answer your questions about how to care for your dog with this incurable disease.

What is Degenerative Myelopathy in Dogs?

According to Paul Konowicz, not much is known about the mechanism of DM.  Paul says, like ALS, your dog’s muscles begin to lose nourishment and start to waste away or atrophy.  Whether that means it’s an autoimmune disease or a generic one nobody’s sure just yet. 

Something appears to attack the sheath around the nerves in your dog’s spine that prevents his nerves from working.  It may also be Degenerative Myelopathy in Dogsinflammation that occurs because of a malfunctioning protein. 

Surgery won’t help your dog with DM unless he has another condition like a tumor that could be removed at the same time. 

This is Paul’s wish: “Hopefully scrupulous breeders will not breed dogs with DM genes.”

Degenerative Myelopathy in Dogs: 9 Tips from Paul Konowicz to Help Care for Your Dog with DM

Paul says the best thing you can do is make sure your dog gets lots of exercise and physical therapy. 

You can also choose from these 9 tips that worked for Paul and Sharon to care for their dog Justice:

  1. Anti-inflammatory drugs and supplements –  Try N-acetylcysteine as an anti-inflammatory drug to help prevent oxidative damage to your dog’s spinal cord. First check with your vet before you use any medications for your dog.
  2. Assisi loop – This non-invasive, FDA cleared, evidence based therapy can be used for treatment of your dog’s pain and swelling with no side-effects. 
  3. Genetic test – Ask for a genetic test to detect degenerative myelopathy in dogs from your breeder to see if your dog is prone to DM.  The cost is about $200.
  4. Harness – Some of the most important things owners can do for their dog’s health and their own physical safety is to get a good harness for your dog.  It will help your dog tremendously and help you prevent back pain or injuries when you lift your dog. 
  5. Feet – Particular care about your dog’s feet is important to prevent sores.  Your dog with DM will start curling his toes and eventually won’t be able to put his paws down flat.  Your dog will also get cuts on the tops of his feet if you don’t protect them or use special shoes.  Another symptom of degenerative myelopathy in dogs affects your dog’s ability to walk on slippery surfaces like wooden or tile floors.  Early on, try “balloon” shoes to help your dog from slipping.  Later on, special dog shoes are necessary to prevent your dog  from dragging his feet and scraping them on pavement which will cause sores.  Dog shoes need to be ordered and fitted by your veterinarian or physical therapist.
  6. Incontinence – Learn how to express your dog when he has incontinence issues.  Fecal incontinence for Paul’s dog Justice didn’t seem to be an issue because his bowel movements just came out. 
  7. Mattress – Paul recommends you get a cot with a mattress to cushion your dog and keep him off the ground.  The cot will raise your dog 18 to 20 inches off your floor which is an enormous relief for your back especially if your dog is over 50 pounds. Paul bought a mattress with 2 inch memory foam for about $125.  Degenerative myelopathy in dogs can take a toll on your dog’s body so you want to keep him as comfortable as possible.
  8. Urine, diapers and puppy pads – It’s important to keep your dog dry and free of urine scalds. This means you need to change your dog’s diapers at least 3 to 4 times daily and use baby wipes and cornstarch powder afterwards. Paul and Sharon used regular Degenerative Myelopathy in Dogsdiapers and a special dog waist wrap to secure Justice’s diaper.  They placed Justice on puppy pads for him to poop.  It is easier and less messy to just let the poop fall out.  This is probably the most difficult task and it takes some getting used to.  “However, your dog is like your child and you will do almost anything.” 
  9. Dog Health Insurance – Finally, getting good dog health insurance is critical. You will have unexpected dog health expenses with your dog because of the progressive nature of degenerative myelopathy in dogs.  The best strategy will be to get dog health insurance for your puppy before he develops any pre-existing conditions.

Now you have 9 proven tips to use to help care for your dog with DM thanks to Paul Konowicz, his wife Sharon and Justice.  I hope you got value from this article so you can take better care of your dog with DM.

Share this article on degenerative myelopathy with your friends and family so they have these 9 helpful tips from Paul and Sharon to care for their dog.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies and personal experiences from Dog Health News.

Our featured dog is Justice, a handsome Boxer who developed DM and lived in New England with his owners.  Justice was able to use a custom designed wheelchair to help him walk and run around.  I was sad to hear that Justice lost his battle with DM.  Thankfully, Justice had loving owners who took care of him through every challenge.

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.

Veterinarian Near Me: Bad Vets and How to Avoid Them

veterinarian near me

How to choose the best veterinarian near me and avoid the bad vets might be the first question you want answers to as a new dog owner because your greatest fears include whether or not your dog’s vet will overcharge you, what if your vet can’t treat your dog in an emergency and even worse, what if your vet misdiagnoses your dog’s health symptoms which results in harmful side effects from your dog’s medication prescribed by your vet.

This news brief gives you essential questions you need to ask any veterinarian before you decide to put your dog in their care.  I hope when you read this post you’ll have all the ammunition you need to avoid bad vets near you and keep your dog healthy.

Who is the Best Veterinarian Near Me? Tips to Pick the Right Vet for Any Needs

You may already know how to take care of your dog’s basic health needs like walks and exercise.  These are subtle tips to help you select the best vet for your dog’s professional care.

  • Word of Mouth – Members of your community who’ve used local veterinarians near you for years could be your most valuable source when you need to find a good vet for your dog and avoid the bad vets. Dog owners in your local area will be honest about their vet’s service quality and give you actual examples how their dog’s health emergencies were handled.
  • Friendly Atmosphere – Observe the behavior and attitude of the vet and staff.  Notice the manner in which your questions are answered.  Take of how the vet and staff made you feel.  If you don’t feel comfortable, you may walk out and say to yourself, this is not the best veterinarian near me and continue your search.  Bad vets may not have the best bedside manner which could make you and your dog nervous or anxious at vet visits.
  • Busy Office – There are pros and cons to a busy veterinary office.  A busy waiting room could mean the vet has happy clients and an outstanding reputation… or, sadly the office staff may overbook and you’ll be forced to wait longer for your Veterinarian Near Meappointments.  Ask dog owners in the waiting room how long they usually for their appointment.  Bad vets near you may have a lot of clients because they’re the only vet office in town.  That doesn’t mean their clients are happy with the service or the vet.
  • References – Most vets will give you names of clients who they know will give you a positive reference. Word of mouth references are better because you’ll get the truth about the good and bad vet’s service.

8 Questions to Ask Before You Choose Your Vet

  1. How many veterinarians work at your practice?   You might discover the best veterinarian near me is 5-10 miles further away from your home because you want access to a larger practice with qualified staff on board in case your primary vet is too busy or on vacation.  Sometimes the best vet for your dog is not the nearest one to you if you want the best professional care for your dog. 
  2. What are your office hours and emergency policies?  You want to make sure your vet is open on Saturdays and has an emergency line in case you need help after hours or on holidays.  Ask about local emergency clinics they can refer you to and whether your primary vet will be able to care for your dog at that clinic.
  3. What services does your practice offer?  Overnight boarding services may be on your wish list for the perfect veterinarian near me.  That’s why you need to ask about all the veterinarian near meservices your vet offers.  Check to see if the vet’s practice has an on-site pharmacy.  Find out if the vet’s prices for their products are competitive. There may some bad vets who will overcharge for products which means you need to compare prices before you buy any medications or supplements for your dog. 
  4. Can my primary veterinarian perform surgery?  Your vet may need to refer you to another specialist outside of her practice to perform your dog’s surgery.  Ask for a list of the vets, surgeons and specialists that may treat your dog instead of your primary veterinarian.
  5. What type of equipment do you have on-site? Ask if the practice has x-ray equipment and the ability to do your dog’s blood work on-site.  Your dog’s tests will be done faster and may be less expensive if they are done on-site.
  6. How much is an office visit? You need to know how much it will cost for every visit to your vet.  Ask if there’s an extra charge for emergencies, Sundays and holidays.  When you compare prices for office visits, make sure you look at all the services for veterinarian near meeach vet and pick the one that’s best for you and your dog. You may discover your choice isn’t the same veterinarian near me as your neighbor because you are both looking for different benefits and conveniences like a dog nutritionist and on-site products.
  7. Do you have payment plans? – When your dog has an accident or develops an illness, it’s good to know if your vet has payment plans to help you afford care for your dog.  Find out if the vet will accept your dog health insurance plan to cover  certain services.
  8. What’s your policy on vaccinations, cancer care and euthanasia? Ask about the vet’s policy on annual vaccinations including kennel cough.  It’s helpful to know what to expect if your dog has cancer or when you need to make end of life decisions for your dog.

veterinarian near meNow you know that the best veterinarian near me may not be the closest or the least expensive.   When you get the answers to the questions above you’ll be able to choose a veterinarian near you that suits your needs. 

Share this article with your friends and relatives to make sure they have the questions they need answers to when they look for a veterinarian near them.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

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Dog Diseases: 3 Major Dilemmas When Your Dog Gets Sick

Dog DiseasesDog diseases impact your life as a dog parent with worry, sleepless nights, and confusion because you’re often caught by surprise, faced with life or death decisions for your dog, and even worse, your veterinarian may not know about your dog’s condition which could lead you on an expensive and frustrating search for dog health specialists to heal your sick dog.

This news brief gives you a picture of what millions of dog owners repeatedly deal with when their dog gets sick so you’ll understand what you need to do for your dog if she becomes ill.

Dog Diseases: 3 Decisions to Make When Your Dog Gets Sick

  1. Symptoms – You can’t move fast enough if you notice your dog’s behavior is stranger than normal or your dog’s bark sounds like a scream and he bangs his head against the wall.  Bundle up your dog, call your veterinarian and bring your dog to your local animal emergency hospital.  Thousands of dog owners regret one thing, and it’s always that they waited too long to get help for their dog.  Potentially fatal diseases include cancer, heart disease, kidney disease and neurological diseases like Granulomatous Meningoencephalitis (GME). Many dog diseases have no known causes and dog owners find it difficult to decide how to deal with their dog’s seizures, pain or chronic medical condition.  There are times when your dog will need animal hospital emergency care rather than suffering in your home.
  2. Medications – Your next painful decision is whether to give your dog drugs that have potential side effects, or to seek alternative health solutions from non-conventional holistic veterinarians.  Your vet will most likely spell out what the prescribed medication is and why your dog needs it.  Then, your choice comes down to Dog Diseaseswhat you think is best for your dog and your budget.  Do you say thank you and take your sick dog for a second opinion?  For thousands of dog owners who come to grips with dog diseases, there’s no time for a second opinion.  Check out the benefits of dog health insurance for your dog when he’s healthy so you’ll have coverage for many dog health costs when your dog needs medical care from a chronic disease. 
  3. Quality of Life – Some dog owners with dogs that need continuous veterinarian consultations to monitor their dog’s health condition spend several hours a day caring for their dog.  There are visits to specialists, emergencies for seizures, unexpected reactions and complications that put additional stress on dog owners and your dog.  Is there a simple answer to what you should do when your dog gets sick?  Every situation for you and your dog has unique factors that make dog diseases a Dog Diseaseshuge emotional challenge for all dog owners.  All you can do is make the best decision for the quality of life for your dog and your family. 

This news brief highlights the 3 critical decisions you need to make if your dog becomes ill or needs immediate life-saving dog medical care.  Dog Health News suggests that dog parents learn as much as they can about their dog’s breed and any potential health diseases or challenges so you can be prepared to take care of your dog.  You may want to look for veterinarians who specialize in preventive or alternative care if you prefer more natural ways to care for your dog’s health.

Share this article with your friends and family so they have information to help with dog diseases in case their dog gets sick or they know of dog owners who are puzzled by their dog’s odd behavior.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

Check out our new podcast series, Sit.Stay.Listen. for more information on dog health.

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.

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 Health: Who Do You Really Rely on For Your Answers?

Dog HealthDog health concerns are an integral part of dog ownership and sometimes you need immediate answers for your dog’s health emergencies without access to your veterinarian so you may have a list of trusted people to call or favorite sources on the internet, however the big question is whether or not you should always believe what you read and hear because you may put your dog at risk with your bad information you got from a friend or relative and wish you had done more research for your dog’s welfare.

This news brief gives you a list of the 7 sources of dog health information dog owners rely on when you need help for their dog based on a survey of our online audience.

Dog Health: 7 Sources for Answers About Dog Concerns That Dog Owners Rely On

  1. Vet – Dog owners like you really do rely on answers to questions about their dog’s health from your veterinarian.  After you’ve shopped around and found the best local veterinarian for you dog, you definitely call your vet first because your vet knows your dog and is the best source of professional advice in all situations.
  2. Google – Dog owners have gotten into the habit of ‘Googling It’ when you need quick answers to your dog’s emergency needs like when your dog gets diarrhea or has fleas. There’s plenty of information online to read, however you do need to find sources that are reputable before you depend on the internet for the right answers.  Check with your vet to verify that the information you’ve found is accurate.
  3. Specialists – Dog owners rely on dog health professionals who are specialists in fields like neurology, cancer and diabetes.  Often, your local veterinarian will suggest that you contact a reliable local specialist for your dog’s specific needs so you can get the best care for your dog.
  4. Dog Health Insurance – Dog owners have discovered that dog insurance companies are a good source for help when they can’t reach their veterinarian. Most pet insurance companies even Dog Healthhave a helpline with 24/7 access so you can get answers right away.  If you’re in an emergency situation and can’t reach your vet, this resource could be helpful.  You can leave a message for your vet at the same time to review the advice you got and make sure your dog receives the proper care.
  5. Vet Colleges – Dog owners have also found that veterinary colleges have excellent sources for top quality information on dog health.  You may be able to visit the college and meet with the staff to get better ideas on how to keep your dog healthy.  Always check with your vet to make sure the advice you get from other sources is accurate for your dog.
  6. Research – Dog owners love to do research on ways to take care of your dog that are innovative including things like chiropractic treatment, supplements, herbs and vaccinations. Once again, you should discuss your findings with your veterinarian to be sure that these techniques and products are good for your dog.
  7. Friends – Dog owners reach out to friends in the dog health business as well as their own personal friends who own dogs or have owned dogs in the past.  Personal experience of dog Dog Healthownership can be quite helpful for many health concerns, however, it’s a good strategy to check with your vet and go over the suggestions you get from your friends.  Not all dogs react the same to medical treatments and you don’t want to take any chances with your dog’s health.

This news brief provides you with the 7 sources for answers to dog concerns that dog owners rely on and suggestions on what to do when you’re in need of advice for your dog’s health.

Share this article with your friends and family so they can be careful about the sources of information they find in order for them to take better care of their dog.  You can always depend on the best dog health strategies from Dog Health News.

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Cost of Owning a Dog: 6 Tips To Control Dog Expenses

Cost of Owning a DogThe cost of owning a dog might be the last thing you think about when all you really want to do is have fun with your new puppy and enjoy the unconditional love your dog gives you because she’s totally dependent on your care and at the same time you know in the back of your mind that dog ownership absolutely means you’ll have bills to pay, food to buy and unknown health expenses for your dog that may pull at your heart strings and your wallet.

This news brief gives you 6 tips on how you can control your dog’s healthcare costs based on survey results done by Dog Health News.

The Cost of Owning A Dog: 6 Tips For Dog Owners on How to Control Dog Expenses

  1. Health Insurance – Although only 1% of dog owners in the US cover their dog with health insurance, it’s one of the best strategies to control dog health expenses.  Statistics consistently show that 1 out of 3 dogs will have an accident or illness before they turn 3 years old and the costs can be thousands of dollars.  A good plan is to get a few quotes on dog insurance as soon as you bring your dog home so you can see if it makes sense for your dog and your budget.
  2. Discounts – If you’re a good shopper for yourself, you always look for the best price on your groceries, clothes, travel and basically everything, so why not do the same thing when it comes to your dog’s health expenses and cut down on the cost of owning a dog.  You can ask for senior discounts, multiple dog quantity discounts and search the internet for the best prices for supplies for your dog.  Talk to your veterinarian about all the ways you can cut costs and where you can buy the best quality products at the lowest prices.
  3. Food – The first thing you want to do is buy nutritionally balanced food for your dog and not go overboard with dog treats.  When you feed your dog a healthy diet, your dog will stay healthier and you won’t have to deal with dog expenses for Cost of Owning a Dogillnesses like Diabetes that usually develop in your dog because of overeating and not enough exercise.  You can also look into making your dog’s food with healthy ingredients approved by your veterinarian to reduce the cost of owning a dog.  The bottom line is that you may spend extra on the right food and much less on dog health expense.
  4. Checkups – Many illnesses go undiscovered because dog owners skip their regular vet visits to save money until they find out their dog has a tumor, heart disease or intestinal problems that cost them thousands of dollars instead.  Prevention and early detection will always be less expensive than emergency or long-term care for your dog.
  5. Vaccinations – This is a controversial subject because of the differences of opinion on how many vaccinations are really necessary for your dog and whether reducing your dog’s shots is a viable way to cut down on the cost of owning a dog.  Always talk to your veterinarian about your options and make a decision that’s best for your dog’s breed and age.  Your dog’s health could be in jeopardy if you avoid a vaccination that is needed to eliminate parasites that can make your dog suffer and possibly shorten your dog’s life.
  6. Services – You can spend hundreds of dollars on your dog for grooming, training, doggie daycare and dog walking. In order to budget for these services, make sure you get quotes and figure Cost of Owning a Dogout how much you want to spend every month on the small services and every year for the big ones.  It’s always a good idea to have an emergency fund for your dog so you can use this rainy day bank account when you need it or if you just want to splurge.

This news brief gives you some simple ways to to control dog health expenses so you’re not surprised by the cost of owning your dog.

Share this article with your friends and family so they’re aware of these tips to help control their dog health expenses.  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 Health News: 8 Frustrations Dog Owners Kvetch About

Dog Health NewsDog Health News knows you may get frustrated with your dog in addition to all the decisions you have to make as a dog owner so we took a survey to discover the reasons that dog owners want to argue, complain or even scream about the responsibilities of dog ownership, because the last thing you want to do is have additional stress in your life after you brought your dog home and then realized it wasn’t as easy as it sounded to raise your dog.

This news brief gives you 8 frustrations of dog ownership so you don’t have to whine and grumble about the tasks and challenges that you have with your dog.

Dog Health News: 8 Most Frustrating Things Dog Owners Talk About

  1. Your veterinarian doesn’t know what’s wrong with your dog – There’s nothing more frustrating than not getting an answer about what’s wrong with your dog especially when your veterinarian isn’t able to give you ways to help your sick dog feel better.  You could get second and third opinions, do research on the internet and consult with your friends, who may have had the same health issue with their dog, however this takes hours out of your day and can add up to additional dog medical expenses with little or no results. Although Dog Health News may not have a solution for your frustration, the best strategy is to be persistent about your search for the best veterinarian for your dog’s healthcare and don’t give up.
  2. Teeth cleaning is difficult – Yes, you are not alone if your dog is not thrilled about having his teeth brushed or even having your hands in his mouth for any reason.  If you’re a new dog owner, the best plan is to work with your veterinarian and a reputable dog trainer who can help you familiarize yourself with your dog’s mouth so that you can perform simple teeth cleaning steps that will reduce the chances of dog dental disease for your dog.  Dog Health News highly recommends that you start early so your dog enjoys having his teeth brushed or gently massaged to help prevent gum disease and other dog dental health problems.
  3. Your dog is fussy about food – This is a tough situation when your dog won’t eat certain foods and you become frustrated because of the time and effort it takes to search for nutritionally balanced food for your dog and he walks away from his food dish.  Work with your veterinarian and find a dog nutrition expert who can help you discover healthy foods your dog will enjoy.  Dog Health News wants you to know that your dog could have allergies or other health conditions that might cause him to stay away from the foods that bother his throat and intestines. 
  4. Dog Health Insurance costs – There’s a great deal of controversy about the value of dog health insurance which leads to only 1% of all dog owners in the US signing up for dog health insurance.  You may want to look into a few companies who offer dog health insurance and ask questions about the benefits for your dog as well as the options including the deductibles.  Dog health insurance is one of the financial strategies that Dog Health News recommends you investigate so you can take better care of your dog in case of illness, accidents and injuries that could happen to your dog.
  5. Walking your dog in bad weather – No matter where you live, there will be a day that you just don’t want to walk your dog and it’s frustrating when you have to deal with torrential downpours or drifting and blowing snow, however, your dog really needs to Dog Health Newsget outdoors to do his business unless you have trained your dog to use doggie diapers and pads.  If there’s one tip that could reduce your frustration, Dog Health News asks you to think about how frustrated your dog would be if he couldn’t relieve himself in bad weather.  You’ll be right out the door in any kind of weather from now on with the knowledge that your dog will have a healthy body and not be tempted to relieve himself in your home.
  6. Not enough time to exercise your dog – If you can’t find enough time to exercise your dog, you may simply need to review your daily routine and see what you can eliminate so you won’t be frustrated about the amount of time you spend with your dog for play and outdoor activities.  Dog Health News also encourages you to talk with your dog trainer and see what type of indoor activities you can add to make sure your dog is fit and trim.  In the end, you and your dog will be happier, less frustrated and in top physical shape for sure.
  7. Owning a dog is expensive – This is the biggest frustration after you’ve brought your dog home and you find out that your initial budget was blown in the first 6 months.  Between food, toys, vaccinations and minimal supplies to get your dog settled, you can expect to spend about $500 – $1,000.  If you’re a really good shopper, you can cut back on your costs, however you also need to be prepared for at least one surprise health expense before your dog reaches 3 years old.  Dog Health News strongly suggests that you meet with your local veterinarian to get a budget for dog expenses before you decide to get your dog.
  8. Keeping your dog away from stuff in the street – This frustration seems like a full time job in some parts of the world with trash, dog poop, antifreeze, salt, sand, spoiled food and even dead animals on the road that your dog can be attracted to before you Dog Health Newsblink your eye.  The best strategy to keep your dog safe in the street is training your dog to walk with you on a leash where you are able to control your dog without force.  Dog Health News suggests that you look into a force free dog trainer that can work with you and your dog to help you teach your dog safe street behavior that will reduce your frustration on your walks with your dog.

This news brief lists the 8 top frustrations of dog owners with tips you can use to reduce or eliminate your frustrations with your dog even if they aren’t on our list.

Share this article with your friends and family so they can look at ways to get rid of their frustrations as dog owners.  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 Health News: Stuff You Can’t Trust Your Dog To Do

Dog Health NewsDog Health News wants to ask you to remember your dog is still a dog and that means your dog doesn’t have the knowledge you have about the dangers in your dog’s space so it’s up to you to make sure that you don’t give your dog too much credit for managing her own health because you may end up faced with your dog’s medical expenses for things like emergency surgery and diabetes or even worse, your dog could go missing and never come back.

This news brief gives you a list of stuff you can’t trust your dog to do without supervision and care from everyone in your household as well as the people who care for or spend time with you and your dog.

Dog Health News: 6 Things You Can’t Trust Your Dog To Do By Herself

  1. Streets – You can’t be 100% certain that your dog will safely reach the other side of the street alive or stay in a sit position waiting for you when you get to the curb.  There may be situations where you can train your dog to do this successfully, however, it is never a good idea to trust your dog to cross a street off leash.  Your dog can easily get distracted by traffic, dogs, squirrels or Dog Health Newsloud noises when you are out in the street.  Even the best trained dogs cannot be trusted to stop and look both ways before they cross the street.
  2. Food – Dog Health News wants you to know that you can’t be 100% sure that your dog will eat all the right things to stay healthy.  That’s right, your dog will eat just about anything from a hot fudge sundae to an entire pizza topped with eggplant and pepperoni.  I’ve heard people say that their dog is so smart that they can leave them alone in a room filled with food and they won’t touch a thing.  Don’t believe it.  Your dog will find a way to sneak a bite when you aren’t looking and your dog will never let on that he’s guilty until she throws up or gets diarrhea.
  3. Children – Dog Health News wants you to know that you can’t be 100% safe if you leave your dog alone with a child and that includes using your dog as a babysitter.  Children are full of energy and often have high pitched voices that can overstimulate your dog.  Your children can also be so excited by the playfulness of a puppy that accidents can happen to both your child and your dog.  Too many injuries like scratches, bites and falls can occur if you trust your dog alone with children of any age so the best plan is to always be sure there is an adult in the room with children and your dog.
  4. Pain – Dog Health News also wants you to remind you that your dog can’t tell you when she’s in pain. You may also know that your Dog Health Newsdog may hide an injury because your dog may have the instinct that something is wrong with her.  The best strategy as a dog owner is to be aware of your dog’s normal behavior patterns.  Make note of the number of hours your dog sleeps and how much exercise she gets so you can tell if she’s lethargic.  Watch your dog when you’re out on a walk to make sure that your dog isn’t limping or favoring a leg because she’s in pain or has the onset of arthritis.  You can’t trust that your dog will sit in front of you and whimper if she has aches and pains. 
  5. Yard – Dog Health News has seen too many dogs get loose in the street because they’ve found a way to jump over a fence or crawl under a gate when they decide that there’s something of interest outside of your dog’s space in your yard.  Even if you’ve tied your dog to a runner, things can happen that can harm your dog like a simple accident when your dog’s leash might wrap around your dog’s leg or even worse, your dog could end up choking on something in your yard.
  6. Medication – You may count on your dog to do some things like come when you call him, however, your dog may even try to avoid you if he knows she gets daily doses of injections or pills. Dog Health News knows you can be sure that your dog will not remind you that she needs her medication if your dog has an illness like Diabetes or Heart Disease.  The best plan is to have a check off sheet that you sign off on when you give your dog medication so you can be sure your dog gets her pills or shots every day and you don’t rely on your memory or someone in your household who can’t be trusted 100%. 

This news brief gives you 6 crucial things to remember about your dog so you can take better care of your dog and your family.  Another good idea is to look into dog health insurance when you bring your dog into your home.

Share this article with your friends and family so they have information that may help them keep their dog healthy and safe.  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 Health: Hard to Swallow Statistics on Dog Shelters

Dog HealthDog health statistics that relate to dogs in shelters show that your dog might have a 30% chance of being returned to you if he ends up in a shelter, however your dog has similar chances of being adopted or euthanized which tells you how important it is to take care of your dog so he doesn’t get lost or given to a shelter as the last resort when you can’t keep your dog in your home.

This news brief gives you the heart-breaking facts about what might happen to your dog if he is relinquished to a shelter or is brought in to a dog shelter as a stray after your dog gets lost.

Dog Health: Nationwide Statistics about Dogs in US Shelters

According to the American Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), over 13,000 independent community animal shelters are not monitored by any national organization.  This means that statistics related to animals in shelters are estimates and may vary from state to state.

  • Almost 4 Million dogs enter shelters nationwide annually.
  • Over 1 Million dogs are euthanized nationwide annually.
  • About 1.5 Million dogs are adopted nationwide annually.
  • About .5 Million dogs who enter shelters as strays are reunited with their owners.
  • About 35% of shelter dogs are adopted, 31% are euthanized and Dog Health 26% are reunited with their owners.  These dog health statistics related to dog shelters are about the same every year.
  • There are twice as many dogs in shelters that are strays as compared to dogs relinquished by their owners.

5 Facts About US Dog Ownership Statistics

  1. There are 70 – 80 Million dogs owned in the US.
  2. Almost 40-50% of all households in the US own a dog.
  3. Half of the dog owners in the US heard about their dog through word of mouth according to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA)
  4. About 30% of dogs are purchased through a breeder and another 30% are adopted from a shelter or rescue.
  5. Most dogs are acquired from friends and family. 

Note:  Thousands of dogs are relinquished to dog shelters because owners are faced with unexpected medical bills for their dog.  One dog health strategy is to find out how dog insurance might work for you as soon as you adopt or buy your dog.

5 Ways You Can Change the Statistics in Dog Shelters and Save Dog’s Lives

  1. Adopt your dog from a shelter or rescue. You will be saving the life of a dog that may have been brought to a shelter through no fault of his own.
  2. Ask yourself if you are accountable as a dog owner.  This means that you are committed to all the responsibilities of dog Dog Healthownership including your dog health care, training and care until your dog passes away.
  3. Spay or neuter your dog to help reduce the overpopulation of dogs.
  4. Consider microchipping your dog even if you think you don’t need to do it.  The statistics show that 5% of the dogs in the US end up as strays in shelters.
  5. Put identification tags on your dog’s collar so your dog may be reunited with you more quickly if your dog goes missing.

This news brief gives you statistics about the astronomical numbers of dogs that pass through dog shelters every year in the US so you can take better care of your dog and spread awareness about the number of dogs that live and die in dog shelters in the US.

Share this article with your friends and family so they have the information they need to keep their dog from ending up being a statistic in the worst category.  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.

What Dog Is Right For Me? Ways to Choose the Best Breed

What Dog is Right for MeWhat dog is right for me? may not be the first question on your mind when you decide to add a dog to your household however you might want to think about your lifestyle and environment before you make a commitment to your dog so you don’t become a part of the 20% of dog owners who give up your dog to a shelter after you realize that your dog was the wrong breed for you.

This news brief gives you 3 questions to ask yourself when you look for a dog so you find the breed that works the best for your temperament and environment.

What Dog is Right for Me? 3 Questions that Require a “Yes”

  1. How much time can I give to my dog? –  Ask yourself, when will you have time to spend quality time with your dog.   Consider all the time you have available for walks with your dog, play, meals and even quiet moments around your house with your dog before you both go to sleep.  If you don’t have at least 3-5 hours to spend with your dog every day, you might want to reconsider taking on the responsibilities of dog ownership for the sake of your dog.
  2. How much space can I give to my dog? – Ask yourself what dog is right for me and if your dog will have the right amount of space to stretch his legs and get the exercise he needs.  Once you What Dog is Right for Medetermine that you have the time to care for your dog, you want to look around your home and your grounds to see if your dog will have a healthy environment.  If you choose a small dog that doesn’t need much space and exercise, an apartment may work out fine.  Larger dogs like Golden Retrievers and German Shepherds need room to run around so they may not be happy in tight quarters with no yard.  Statistics show that dog owners often discover they’ve chosen the wrong breed if you don’t ask yourself the critical question, What dog is right for me?, and within a few months they are either looking for another home for their dog or giving up their dog to a shelter.
  3. How much money can I spend on my dog? – Ask yourself what percentage of your combined household income can be used to pay all the bills for your dog.  An average annual allowance to care for one dog can exceed $1,000 in the first year including vaccinations, food, toys and supplies.  Additional costs to care for What Dog is Right for Meyour dog include grooming, dog walking, doggie daycare, emergency health care, vet visits, boarding and dog health insurance.  In general the smaller your dog breed choice, the lower your costs.

This news brief gives you the first 3 important questions to ask yourself about what dog is right for me, before you decide to bring a dog into your home, so you and your new dog have the best experience with no surprises that could have results that affect your finances or your dog’s welfare.

Share this article with your friends and family as a guideline so they can consider all the dog ownership responsibilities before they choose a dog.

SPECIAL BONUS — If you would like easy to follow news briefs to Get a Handle On Your Dog’s Healthcare Costs, claim your FREE ACCESS to the “How to Control Your Dog’s Healthcare Costs” video news . Go HERE to get it FREE.

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