Later this week, we will celebrate Independence Day with barbecues, parties, friends, family, and most of all, fireworks. While these things are a lot of fun for people, they can be hazardous and terrifying for our pets.
July is one of the busiest times of the year for pet shelters and animal clinics. Many pets get spooked from the loud sounds made by fireworks, causing them to jump fences and get lost. During the holiday, pets are also at higher risk of ingesting substances that can make them seriously ill. Keep your pets safe and anxiety-free this 4th of July by following these tips.
1. Leave pets at home.
Although you might be tempted to bring your pet with you to join in the fireworks and festivities, pets will be safer and feel more secure at home. Being around many people and potentially other animals in an unfamiliar environment will only heighten fear.
Never, under ANY circumstances, leave your pet in your vehicle.If your pet has a history of becoming anxious, consult a veterinarian before July 4th.
2. If your pet has experienced fear and anxiety from loud noises in the past, for example during thunderstorms, it is likely that they will react the same way to fireworks.
Safer Anesthesia, Better Surgery, Happy Pets
Thanks to the efforts of our forefathers, we can perform better surgery thanks to better monitoring, safer anesthesia and better drugs.
A few decades ago, ensuring that a patient was alive during anesthesia was limited to using your senses: observing gum color, feeling pulses, watching the chest move. More recently, we borrowed from human medicine and started using EKG machines to monitor the heart. Today, most… modern clinics can also measure oxygen levels, blood pressure, temperature, heart rate, and occasionally CO2 levels.
There is no question that the anesthesia drugs we use today are safer than those used a few years ago. By combining several drugs, we can provide multiple benefits to the patient, while using lower dosages of each one. This is called balanced anesthesia. For example, when we do fancy orthopedic surgery on a pet’s knee, we might combine:
As a practicing veterinarian of over twenty years, I’ve been nagged by an obvious and seemingly uanswerable question: why do small dogs live longer than large dogs? For years it’s been widely accepted and understood in the pet world that tiny teacup poodles will live ten or more years longer than a Great Dane. They’re both dogs, share the same basic DNA, eat the same types of foods, and live in similar homes. Yet one breed lives up to three times longer. Why? New research sheds some light on this issue.
In the April issue of the scientific journal “The American Naturalist,” biologists at Germany’s University of Göttingen explored the relationship between size of dog breeds and life expectancy. Researchers analyzed data on over 56,000 dogs representing 74 breeds that visited North American veterinary teaching hospitals. The scientists found that larger dogs appeared to age at a faster rate than smaller dogs. Interestingly, the research concluded that every increase in 4.4 pounds (2 kg) reduces life expectancy by approximately one month.
Okay, so my observations on small dogs living longer than big dogs were correct. But why?