Rattlesnake season is approaching! As the weather warms up and outdoor activity increases, please remember that rattlesnakes are a potent danger to dogs. Like all cold-blooded animals, rattlesnakes are more active in the hotter seasons. Rattlesnakes like to bask in the sun most days, increasing the chances of encountering one when hiking, camping or on a walk in the Tri-Valley area. Young snakes are very dangerous, as they have poor venom control and will often inject all they have into each bite. Rattlesnake venom is extremely dangerous to pets, leading to excessive swelling and necrosis of the tissue surrounding the bite wound by disrupting the integrity of the blood vessels.
Rattlesnake bites should be treated immediately at the nearest emergency facility. Treatment can include hospitalization while your pet is connected to intravenous fluids and close monitoring; depending on the severity and physical location of the bite, anti-venom medication may be needed also. Not treating your pet could lead to death. Continue Reading
Rocky was born July 29, 2012. He was 8 days old when we first saw him. When we brought him home on September 28 at 9 weeks old he was just 1 lb. 1 oz. He is a sweet, smart and friendly pup who loves everyone including children and other dogs. He loves to go for walks, play on the beach, play fetch and tug-of-war with his toys, and hang out with his older “brother” Angel.
In early November of 2014, we woke up on a Sunday morning and noticed that Rocky’s eyes were dilated and didn’t respond to light. His vision seemed to be impaired though he was able to see some. We took him to Del Valle the next day and were referred to an ophthalmologist. The ophthalmologist said that a spinal tap was required to determine the cause of the inflammation to his optic nerve. Unfortunately, there were complications during the tap so not enough fluid was removed to test and Rocky came out of anesthesia with terrible equilibrium issues to the point where he could not walk or even stand up without falling over. It’s been a long journey of recovery for him. During the first week or so, we had to hold him constantly because he could not stand up on his own. We hand fed him and gave him water with a dropper. We slept on the floor on an air mattress for 6 weeks for fear of him falling out of bed. Continue Reading
Having to cope with the death of a pet can be as difficult as coping with the death of a human family member. Grief is a normal and healthy emotion that accompanies the loss of a loved one, and we should never suppress or simply ignore our feeling of loss. There is no right or wrong way for people to feel as they grieve the loss of their pet; each person experiences loss and grief in his or her own way. Deciding to euthanize a pet can be one of the hardest decisions of our lives. Your decision is a personal one, but your veterinarian, family, and friends can assist you and support you during this difficult time. You need to consider not only what is best for your pet, but what is best for you and your family. Quality of life is the most important consideration for pets and their families.