Just like humans, dogs have ruff days and health problems from aging and their active lives. They don’t always know how to tell us where they hurt or why they are acting differently, but there are some signs that pet parents can watch for.
Here's advice to help your dog fight the very real Canine Influenza Virus. Read the full Medium article here.
While regular exercise, a balanced diet and annual wellness exams are essential for keeping pets healthy, sometimes they require more care. This includes when an animal needs a medication, which can be costly, especially if it's for a chronic condition. Fortunately, if you discover your pet needs a medication, you have options for managing the expense.
(BPT) - If you own a pet, you're in good company. In fact, 67% of U.S. households own a pet, according to the 2019-2020 National Pet Owners Survey by the American Pet Products Association. Pets provide unconditional love and countless memories, and in return they look to their humans to care for them as best as possible.
While regular exercise, a balanced diet and annual wellness exams are essential for keeping pets healthy, sometimes they require more care. This includes when an animal needs a medication, which can be costly, especially if it's for a chronic condition.
Fortunately, if you discover your pet needs a medication, you have options for managing the expense. Few people are aware that by asking your veterinarian two simple questions, you could lower your costs considerably:
Using your local pharmacy for pet prescriptions
Many pet parents don't know that most of the medications their pets use are the same ones people use, potentially at the same or a different dosage. That means that many of the pharmacies you visit for your needs can also be used for your pets' prescriptions. The top five conditions pets share with people are diabetes, asthma, infections, anxiety and depression.
What's more, filling your pets' prescriptions at a retail pharmacy is often less expensive than getting it filled through the vet, plus it saves time because you can get all your family's prescriptions at once, including your furry family members.
How to get pet prescription discounts
To save even more on your pets' prescriptions, consider using a pharmacy savings card, like the Inside Rx Pets savings card offered by Inside Rx. This free prescription savings card helps reduce costs up to 75% on pet medications when purchased at a local pharmacy or when ordered for home delivery.
The card can be downloaded and presented at one of the 50,000 participating pharmacies located across the U.S. and Puerto Rico. These include national chains such as Kroger Family of Pharmacies, CVS and Walgreens. Learn more at insiderx.com/pets.
Always follow prescription directions
Remember, it's important to follow your veterinarian's recommendations for the prescription and dosage and not try to manage your pet's condition on your own. Do not use over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers you buy for yourself with your pet as experts note this can be dangerous.
"Although these products are approved for use in people, many of them are not safe for pets. For example, acetaminophen can cause severe illness, and even death, in pets. Talk to your veterinarian before you give any medication to your pet," the American Veterinary Medical Association states.
To keep prescription drug costs manageable for pets, ask these two simple questions and explore savings options at your local pharmacy. Laws vary by state, but over 40 states require veterinarians to write a prescription if asked, so it's worthwhile to inquire. You'll help your pets feel their best while helping ease your budget as well.
Sixty-seven percent of U.S. households, or about 85 million families, own a pet, according to the 2019-2020 National Pet Owners Survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA).
What are the best ways to keep your pup — and you — active and moving? Here's five expert tips to get your dog fitter and healthier!
(BPT) - Face it, getting enough exercise is tough for everyone, and it's certainly true when it comes to our pets. The amount of exercise your dog may need varies, depending on the age, size and breed, but most dogs need more exercise than they're getting, especially during the colder months when we all prefer to stay indoors. Consult your veterinarian for guidelines about how much exercise your dog should be getting to stay in top condition, then make a plan to add more pep to your dog's step.
Dr. Jeff Weber, Emmy award-winning celebrity veterinarian, says that play and exercise are key to keeping our four-legged friends healthy: "Just like humans, there is a strong correlation to obesity in pets when they eat more and exercise less. In fact, it has been estimated that up to 50 percent of dogs and cats in this country are overweight or, worse yet, obese. It's important to get your pet up and moving."
What are the best ways to keep your pup — and you — active and moving?
1. Vary your walking route
When you're walking your dog, switch up the route now and then to keep it more interesting for both of you. Work on adding a few minutes or a couple of extra blocks to your walk any chance you get, and you’ll both benefit from the extra steps.
2. Pick up the pace
Rather than just taking a leisurely stroll, walk with purpose, like you’re trying to get somewhere. This will make it a more heart-healthy workout for the both of you. Ease into it slowly, trying 5 minutes quicker, followed by 5 minutes slower, until you both get used to the faster pace. Enlist different family members to join you or take turns at the walks to vary the walking pace your dog experiences.
3. Bring friends along
You’re more likely to enjoy and stick with regular walking dates if you can make some of your walks into a social occasion, whether your friends also have dogs or not. Instead of meeting someone for coffee or drinks, meet up with them for a walk-and-talk with your dogs.
4. Make time for active play
In addition to walking every day, mix it up! Spend a little extra time encouraging active play like a good game of fetch with your dog. You can play fetch at a nearby park or right in your yard, if you have enough space for your dog to run around. Not good at throwing? No worries — a toy like Chuckit! launcher from Petmate can keep your dog engaged and excited to run and fetch for a lively, active play session that will be fun for both of you.
"Fetch play is a terrific way to increase stamina and keep your pup in shape,” says Weber.
The interactive game of fetch encourages healthy movement and cardiovascular endurance for pets and pet owners, especially as active play and movement declines when the weather gets colder. Fetch is also an effective way to help train and develop positive behavior in puppies or newly adopted four-legged family members.
5. Exercise their brains
Create an obstacle course in your yard or use puzzle games to help keep your dogs mentally active — which can relieve boredom for dogs who spend time alone.
Research your dog's breed to discover what stimulus they are most likely to respond to, so you can find new toys and activities your dog will love. Examples might be hide-and-seek games, having them use their sense of smell to find treats or chasing (non-toxic) bubbles.
Spending time playing with your dog is not only fun and a terrific stress-reliever for both of you, but it also strengthens the human-pet bond. Give your pet healthy exercise that every dog needs and your furry friend will be happier, too.
There are many emotional benefits to owning a dog, such as companionship and unconditional love, but a pet can also positively affect his or her owners’ physical health, too. Consider these five simple ways pet owners can take the best care of their dogs.
5 Ways to Help Keep Your Dog Happy and Healthy
(Family Features) There are many emotional benefits to owning a dog, such as companionship and unconditional love, but a pet can also positively affect his or her owners’ physical health, too.
According to studies from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, spending quality time with a dog can help ease stress and anxiety for the owner and can even lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. To be able to reap the health benefits of dog ownership, it’s key to ensure you’re taking proper care of your dog with quality nutrition and plenty of exercise.
Veterinarian Dr. Jeff Werber offers these five simple ways pet owners can take the best care of their dogs, because when dogs are happy and healthy, their owners can be, too. To learn more about how dogs’ health is linked to their owners’, and for more tips for feeding your pet, visit IAMS.com.
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Older animals can be just as cute and lovable as their younger counterparts. In fact, they often come with many wonderful qualities that take years to develop in younger animals. Here are a few benefits to consider as you're looking for a forever friend.
(BPT) - Every day, in shelters all across the country, senior animals are passed over by prospective pet owners. Why? Some people are looking for the energy of a new puppy or feel older dogs offer families too little time. But the truth is, providing a new home for an older animal may bring you a level of companionship you never imagined.
"Any shelter worker will tell you, puppies and kittens get adopted first and older shelter pets have a higher likelihood of being euthanized," says Andrea Arden, a dog trainer who's been featured on Animal Planet and the Today Show, and spokeswoman for Tractor Supply Company's Pet Appreciation Week. "But if you're considering adoption, there are great reasons to choose a more mature pet."
Older animals can be just as cute and lovable as their younger counterparts. In fact, they often come with many wonderful qualities that take years to develop in younger animals.
Here are a few benefits to consider as you're looking for a forever friend:
Saving a life
It's no secret that senior pets are at a disadvantage in shelters. Not only do they have a lower likelihood of adoption, they are also more prone to depression and confusion as a result of their new environment. Consider how they got there; more often than not, a senior animal ends up in a shelter due to owner surrender. It could be an older owner's declining health, an unforeseen move or a sudden change in financial situation. Still, these are wonderful, loving animals that simply had no place to go. By choosing to adopt a senior pet, you're providing a second chance at life and, with that, can come a lot of fulfillment.
Say so long to training
Lucky for you, the majority of senior animals have already learned the fundamentals - everything from toilet training to various commands to leash walking. Not having to spend weeks and weeks on training can be a valuable perk of adopting a senior pet.
Age is but a number
However, should you want to teach an older dog a new trick, you're in luck. Animals can be trained at any age; in fact, more mature animals may have a longer attention span, so you may actually find it easier to teach your senior pet something new.
What you see is what you get
Adopting an older pet means its size and temperament are established, increasing your chance of finding the perfect companion for your household. Have a cat? No problem, many senior dogs have already lived in a home with felines.
Lots of love, less destruction
Senior pets are typically well past the search-and-destroy phase, minimizing the possibility of unwanted accidents and bad behavior.
Something for everyone
The mellow disposition of a senior animal makes them a great companion for people of all ages. Their lower energy level is often a perfect fit for the elderly, while their calm presence can be great for families with children.
Wonderful years ahead
Arden urges pet parents not to let the shorter lifespan of an older pet keep you from adopting one. Depending on the breed, a dog of 7 or 8 years may have at least as many good years left ahead, and most breeds of domestic cats can easily live to be 15 or older. It's also important to note that while veterinary attention and medication are needed for animals of all ages, old age doesn't necessarily mean higher costs.
"You wouldn't avoid making a human friendship just because the new person in your life is mature," Arden says. "When you adopt an older animal, you can still have plenty of time to enjoy their companionship. Because they're older, you'll be inspired to make every moment with them as loving and rewarding as possible."
Preparing for senior pets
Good nutrition and regular veterinary checkups are important for all pets, especially seniors. Look for a specialized food, such as 4health Premium Pet Food, to ensure your pet is receiving the vitamins and minerals needed to stay healthy. You can also find walk-in PetVet Clinics at Tractor Supply stores where you can save as much as 70 percent off the cost of yearly vaccinations, microchipping and other preventative treatment options.
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