ALERT: Don’t Leave You Dogs in Your Car This Summer


Every summer we hear countless stories of dogs passing away due to heat. The majority of these cases come from people leaving their dogs in cars. As a pet parent, it is up to you to make sure that your pet is safe. By leaving dogs in cars for any period of time, you are shirking that responsibility.

RELATED STORY: 5 Steps to a Safe Drive with Your Dog



In the span of 20 minutes, a car left outside in 70-degree weather will  reach an internal temperature of 99. Extrapolate that, on a 90 degree day (which we are only going to see more of) the temperature inside your car can hit 120 degrees in just over 20 minutes! That is more than hot enough to cause a heat stroke — especially if the subject in question is wearing a fur coat and cannot sweat.

RELATED STORY: 5 Remedies for Car Sickness in Dogs and Cats

And the internal temp only grows over time. At midday on a scorcher, the inside of a car can easily get up to 130 degrees. Also, despite what you may have heard, cracking the windows doesn’t help.



Sure, it is nice to take them out for a drive, but at what cost? Every time you leave your pet in the car unattended, you run the risk of heat stroke. Also, in many places, you can receive a fine — or worse.

RELATED STORY: Buckle Up Pets – It’s The Law

Many states are now enacting laws regarding leaving a pet inside a car. Many of these laws give an officer the right to use “any means necessary” to free the pet languishing inside. So, if you leave your pet in the car and come back to find your left rear window smashed in, odds are it was done with the full blessing of the law.



Simply put, leave your pet at home. You could also leave them tied to a post outside, but many people do not approve of that approach, as it leaves open the possibility that someone could mess with, or steal, your pet. Also, by leaving them unattended outside, there is a chance that they could nip at someone, which could result in a legal issue.

RELATED STORY: 5 Tips for Dog Safety Around The Home

So this summer, please play it safe. When you are going out to run errands or anything of the sort, leave your pet at home. They will thank you for it.

Sign up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more.

Salisbury Post – Editorial: Don’t Make Pets Suffer In Hot Cars
Department of Geosciences – Heatstroke Deaths of Children in Vehicles


Why Do Cats Drool?


When most people think of drool, they think of dogs with jowls, like Saint Bernards and Mastiffs. But dogs aren’t the only ones who can produce excess saliva; cats sometimes drool too, and you shouldn’t ignore it when it happens.

So why do cats drool, and when is it time to see the vet? Let’s take a look.

Happy Drooling

Some cats drool when they are happy, excited, or extremely relaxed. A cat who is getting a serious rubdown from a loving owner, for example, may feel so soothed and serene that they forget to swallow! For many cats, purring and drooling go hand in hand, but you should still mention it to your veterinarian at your cat’s annual check-up. They may want to check your cat out to ensure that the drooling is not related to a larger health issue.

RELATED STORY: Is My Cat Weird? 5 Freaky Feline Behaviors

Stress-Induced Drooling

Some cats produce excess saliva in response to stress or fear. For example, many cats drool in the car, at the vet’s office, before or after receiving an injection, or in response to a bad-tasting or toxic food or medication (or in anticipation of it, if they’ve had it before). Oftentimes, stress-induced drooling will be accompanied by stress-related purring; that’s right, purring isn’t always positive. Sometimes it signals fear or discomfort.

If your cat’s drooling is related to stress or fear, it should stop when the cat’s circumstances or environment changes. However, if the drooling continues or if you notice any other symptoms, contact your veterinarian; something more serious may be going on.

RELATED STORY: Diets to Treat Cat and Dog Stress

Medical Issue-Related Drooling

A cat may also produce excess saliva and drool as a result of certain medical issues, including:

If your cat’s drooling is continuous or accompanied by any other symptoms, contact your veterinarian.

Does your cat drool? Leave us a comment and let us know, and sign up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more.


The Best Fruits and Vegetables for Dogs

fruits and vegetables for dogs

Fruits and vegetables provide many health benefits to humans, like helping us fight disease, maintain a healthy weight, and lengthen our lives. But can fruits and vegetables for dogs improve their health as well? Many veterinary nutritionists say yes, especially if you feed your dog the right kinds of produce.

Before giving your dog any new food — whether it’s fruits and vegetables or something else — it’s a good idea to consult with your veterinarian.

Your vet will let you know the best way to feed your dog a new food to avoid digestive problems and nutrient imbalance.

So what are the right kinds of produce, and what are the wrong kinds? Let’s take a look.

Fruits and Vegetables For Dogs

Dogs Can Eat Carrots: Many dogs love carrots straight from the bag, and carrots placed in the freezer can make soothing and nutritious treats for teething pups. Carrots contain immune-boosting vitamin C as well as high levels of beta-carotene.

Dogs Can Eat Apples: Apples are an excellent source of vitamin C and pectin, a fiber that can improve your dog’s digestive health. In addition, the apple’s grainy texture will scrub your dog’s teeth while they chew (this doesn’t mean that you can stop brushing your dog’s teeth!) If you wish to feed your dog an apple, remove the seeds first. Apple seeds contain cyanide, which can be poisonous to dogs.

Dogs Can Eat Green Beans: Green beans are packed with vitamins and nutrients, including vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, and omega-3 fatty acids. They are also a great source of calcium, fiber, copper, folic acid, niacin, iron, potassium, manganese, riboflavin and thiamin, and beta-carotene. Whew! You can feed your dog either fresh or frozen green beans; if you choose a frozen variety, make sure that it doesn’t contain salt, as salt is poisonous to dogs.

Dogs Can Eat Sweet Potatoes: Most dogs find sweet potatoes to be extremely tasty, so they can make a great addition to your dog’s dinner bowl. Slice them or dehydrate them to make a chewy treat. Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of dietary fiber and they also contain vitamin C, vitamin B6, beta-carotene, and magnesium.

Some other fruits and vegetables that are safe to feed your pup include: Asparagus, blueberries, broccoli, brussels sprouts, lettuce, oranges, pumpkin (sugar-free; no pumpkin pie filling!), spinach, strawberries, squash, and watermelon (without seeds).

RELATED STORY: 8 Things Your Dog Begs for That Are OK to Share

Fruits and Vegetables to Avoid Giving Your Dog

Onions and Garlic: These vegetables — in all forms — can destroy red blood cells in dogs and lead to anemia.

Avocados: Avocados contain a harmful chemical called persin that can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and fluid buildup around your dog’s heart. This chemical is very concentrated in the avocado pit, which could be fatal if ingested.

Grapes and Raisins: While is not fully understood why grapes and raisins are toxic to dogs, these fruits can be fatal even if a dog consumes only a small amount.

RELATED STORY: The Most Poisonous Foods for Cats

Fruits with pits: Fruits with pits such as peaches, plums, apricots, and cherries can be toxic to a dog not because of the fruit, but because of the pit, which contains cyanide like apple and watermelon seeds. If you wish to feed your dog one of these fruits, remove the pit or seeds first.

Do you feed your dog fruits and vegetables? Leave a comment and let us know. And if you care about keeping your pet healthy, sign up for PetPlus. PetPlus is a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more. Learn more and register at


What to Do if Your Dog Is Stung by a Bee

The official first day of summer is fast approaching, and chances are you’ve already started spending more time outside with your dog. Perhaps you’ve started noticing more flowers blooming too, and with them, more bees buzzing. No one likes getting stung by a bee, but for most people it’s only an annoyance unless you’re allergic.

Dogs, on the other hand, can suffer serious kidney problems from bee stings if they are stung by multiple bees at once.

So what if your dog is stung by a bee?

There are even cases of dogs dying from multiple bee stings, so it’s a good idea to know how to keep your dog safe and what you should do if your dog is ever stung.

Bees vs. Wasps

Both bee and wasp stings can be poisonous to dogs, and if you end up needing to take your dog to the veterinarian following a sting, you’ll want to be able to tell the vet just what type of insect stung your pup.

Worker bees are rounder and smaller than wasps. Worker bees have barbed stingers that are designed to lodge into the skin, killing the bee when the stinger detaches from the body.

Bumblebees have a “fuzzy” appearance. Bumblebees have smooth stingers that can actually sting multiple times and the bee will not die as a result.

Wasps have longer, smoother bodies. Wasp stingers are not barbed, but they do tend to be more painful, and if provoked, a wasp may sting multiple times.

RELATED STORY: Poisonous Plants to Dogs and Cats

Avoiding Bee Stings

Here are some useful tips for avoiding bee stings:

  • Most dogs get stung on the face while poking around near flowers or investigating or chasing an insect that’s capable of stinging. While it’s not possible to avoid every flower, you can keep your dog away from high risk areas on walks and hikes and discourage them from playing in your garden.
  • Keep your yard clean and clear to avoid attracting bees and wasps. Put away leftover food, clean the grill after BBQing, and make sure all garbage cans are secure.
  • Check your yard regularly for bee and hornet nests. If you find one, call a professional to safely remove it.
  • If you plan to go on a walk or hike with your dog, avoid wearing strong smelling perfumes, lotions, or deodorants. Bees are attracted to strong, sweet smells, and your dog may end up suffering the consequences of your fragrance.

RELATED STORY: The 7 Unsuspected Pet Dangers of Summer

What to Do if Your Dog Is Stung

Regardless of how safe you are, bee stings can still sometimes happen, and it’s important to know what to do if the situation ever comes up.

  • Stay calm and move your dog away from the area, as there may be other stinging insects or their nest nearby.
  • Examine the sting area. If you see a stinger, you can try to remove it to reduce the amount of venom that is injected into your dog’s system. Do not squeeze a stinger or try to remove it like you would a splinter. Instead, flick it with your finger or the edge of a rigid object like a credit card.
  • In the case of a single sting, you should be able to manage symptoms at home. Apply a mixture of water and baking soda to reduce the pain, and use an icepack to minimize swelling and inflammation.
  • Keep an eye on your dog’s sting. If it begins swelling up, go to your veterinarian or an emergency clinic right away.
  • If your dog has been stung multiple times, go to the veterinarian or emergency clinic immediately. Treatment typically involves fluid therapy, corticosteroids, and close monitoring of your dog’s vital signs.



What to Do if Your Dog Is Bitten


Bite wounds are one of the most common reasons why dogs end up at the emergency vet clinic. Your dog may have gotten into a scuffle with another dog at the dog park, felt the wrath of the neighborhood cat, or had a close encounter with a wild animal. While many bite wounds appear to be small, they can end up spelling big trouble for your dog if left untreated.

Why Are Bite Wounds So Bad?

Bite wounds are puncture wounds, which means that while the outward appearance of the wound may be small, it likely extends deep into your pet’s skin. When the opening of the wound heals over (sometimes very quickly), bacteria from the animal’s mouth that bit your pet can get trapped deep inside, leading to infection and, in some cases, an abscess.

What to Do if Your Dog Is Bitten

#1 Get your dog away from the other animal as soon as it is safe to do so.

It’s not safe for a human to insert themselves into the middle of a dog fight, so be cautious. If the owner of the biting animal is around, ask them if their pet has been vaccinated against rabies (this will be useful information for your veterinarian to know). You may also want to exchange contact information with the other owner in case you need to follow up.

#2 Control the bleeding.

If the bite wound is bleeding a lot (often the case with bites to the ear or face), apply pressure to the wound with a clean towel or other piece of clean fabric. Try not to panic; if your dog sees that you are upset it may cause their blood pressure to rise, which can result in increased bleeding.

RELATED STORY: The Causes of Aggression in Dogs

#3 Head to the veterinarian.

While you might think your dog’s bite wound looks minor, the only person who can properly evaluate the situation is your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will look to see how deep the wound is, how much of your dog’s body area is involved, and recommended treatment.

#4 Treat the wound.

The treatment that your veterinarian recommends will depend on the extent of the injury. In most cases, the area around the wound will be shaved, the wound will be cleaned, and a decision will be made about whether to leave the wound open or seal it up. In the case of a small wound, the veterinarian may determine that leaving it open to drain is the best course of action. Larger or deeper cuts may be sutured up or stapled, and a drain may be placed in cases where damage is extensive or there is a chance of fluid buildup.

In most cases, your veterinarian will prescribe an oral antibiotic to ward off infection, and for minor injuries that are left open to heal, a topical antibiotic may also be prescribed.

Depending on the location of your dog’s bite wound, they may have to wear an Elizabethan collar or “cone” to keep them from licking or further damaging the injury site while it heals.

Follow your veterinarian’s instructions explicitly when it comes to home care of the wound. In some cases you may need to clean it or apply ointment, but you should only do so with products recommended by your veterinarian. Do not attempt to treat a wound with Neosporin or hydrogen peroxide without first consulting your veterinarian, as these products may actually hinder the healing process.

After several days, you and your dog may return to your veterinarian for a follow-up examination.

RELATED STORY: The Importance of Socializing a Dog

How to Prevent Bite Wounds

While there is no way to control the behavior of other animals, there are steps you can take to reduce the chances of your dog being bitten:

  • Well-mannered dogs are less likely to bite or get bitten, so consider signing up for an obedience class with your pal.
  • Keep your dog on a leash while you are out walking, and if they are allowed to roam free in your yard, make sure that the area is enclosed and secure so that they can’t escape and other animals can’t find their way in.
  • Be cautious when it comes to other animals. Before letting your dog run free in a dog park, observe the situation and look for signs of tension or aggression. Before letting your dog approach another dog while you’re out on a walk, ask the other owner if it’s safe and okay to do so. The same should go for unfamiliar dogs approaching your dog; either grant or deny the other owner permission first.

Be careful out there. Sometimes, the bite is worse than the bark.

Has your dog ever been bitten by another animal? Leave a comment and tell us about it, and and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, boarding and more. Check it out at


6 Diseases You Can Catch From Your Dog or Cat


As cuddly as your pet may be, there are a few sicknesses that can spread from felines or canines to humans and it helps to be careful. Any infection that can spread from an animal to a human is referred to as “zoonotic.” Here are the details, and how to protect both your pet and your family from these diseases.

1. Salmonellosis

Salmonellosis in an infection caused by salmonella bacteria; it can infect cats, dogs, and spread to people. Dogs and cats who are immune-compromised, or who are very old or very young, are most at risk of picking up this gastro-intestinal distressing bug.

Feeding your pet raw or undercooked meat can cause the infection, or they can catch the disease from another sick animal. If your pet is vomiting or has diarrhea, then thorough cleaning, disinfecting, and hand-washing are all important precautions you can take to prevent the spread of the bacteria.

2. Toxoplasmosis

Toxoplasmosis, a parasite, is problematic for those with compromised immune systems, such as those undergoing chemotherapy. “Don’t clean the litterbox!” many an obstetrician has told pregnant patients who are cat-parents.

Although millions are infected and don’t even know it, Toxoplasmosis is most known to humans due to the increased risk it poses to pregnant women in the form of miscarriage or birth defects to the fetus.

RELATED ARTICLE: The Truth About Toxoplasmosis in Cats

3. Cat Scratch Fever

You might have heard of Cat Scratch Fever due to the popularity of the Ted Nugent song by the same name. Also known as Cat Scratch Disease, Cat Scratch Fever is a bacterial infection transmitted to humans from the saliva of infected cats. While mostly asymptomatic in cats, swollen lymph nodes are the main symptom of the disease in people.

Cat Scratch Fever is normally mild and resolves on its own, although it’s possible to experience other symptoms such as a slight fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, headache, rash, sore throat, or general malaise. To keep your cat from being infected, make sure you use a good flea preventative, since cats catch the disease from fleas.

 RELATED ARTICLE: 10 Common Skin Issues in Dogs, and When to Worry

4. Roundworm

Roundworms are parasites that can infect a dog or cat’s intestinal tract and cause malnourishment as the parasites consume the pet’s food and block the intestines. Diarrhea is the most common symptom as roundworms latch onto the intestines. When the worms travel through the lungs and throat, dogs and cats can exhibit coughing.

If your pet shows symptoms, take them to the vet to get diagnosed and treated with a deworming medication. If transmitted to humans, most cases of roundworm won’t cause severe symptoms.

RELATED ARTICLE: Parasites and Worms in Dogs and Cats

5. Hookworm

Hookworms are intestinal parasites that feed off of your pet’s blood. Prevention is easy! Keep your pet on a once-monthly preventative medication like Heartgard to prevent hookworm, heartworm, and other parasites. There are some great treatments out there for hookworms if your dog or cat is already infected.

While hookworm in humans is uncommon and generally clears up on its own, it can cause an itchy skin disease called “creeping eruption” (ew!)

RELATED ARTICLE: How Parasite And Worm Treatment Works

6. Ringworm

Scaly or inflamed circular bald patches on your dog or cat can signal ringworm, which is actually a fungal infection. While it’s not technically serious, ringworm is highly contagious and should be treated immediately to avoid infecting other pets or people.

Has your pet ever come down with a yucky infection and then given it to you? Let us know in the comments! Prevent and treat infections by signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding and more.


5 Ways To Make Your Senior Pet More Comfortable

Senior pets are special pets. By the time your pal reaches their golden years, they’ll have exhausted most of their high energy and will be content to lounge around the house, take easy-going walks, and curl up by your side. Basically, senior pets are big-time sweethearts, and you can love them back by making the final years of their life as comfortable as they can be.

In addition to special foods or supplements that your veterinarian may recommend, there are a number of accessories that can help your senior pet live a more comfortable life. Let’s take a look.

1. A Better Bed

Senior pets snooze away a large portion of each day, and because they spend so much time catching zzz’s, their resting spot should be as comfortable as possible. Consider a bed with bolstered sides that will support your pet’s back and give them a sense of security, or a soft plush bed that will cushion their joints and bones.

2. Elevated Eating (And Drinking)

Adjustable, elevated food and water bowls
make it so that your pet doesn’t have to bend, thus reducing stress to the joints and neck. Elevated food bowls also aid in digestion because food moves more easily down your pet’s esophagus when their head is upright.

3. A Step Up

Because of sore joints and bones, senior pets sometimes have a hard time jumping off or onto furniture. In addition, jumping can further damage already worn out joints. A set of pet steps will keep your pet from jumping while allowing them to still join you where you are.

4. Bathroom Accident Aids

Aging pets need to use the bathroom more frequently, and they may even become incontinent and have regular accidents. Your pet doesn’t like it any more than you do, so don’t get frustrated. Instead, think about purchasing some supplies that will give your pal more chances to “go” and ease your cleanup, too. Wee pads and diapers (disposable or washable) are both great options. For cats, you may also want to consider a ramped litter box that makes it easy for your cat to get in and out.
RELATED STORY: 8 Reasons For Cat Incontinence And Out-Of-Litter Box Messes

5. Balancing Booties

Sometimes, dogs with joint problems end up splay-legged on slippery surfaces, like the floor of the waiting room at the vet’s office. Help your pal to stand up straight with booties that are worn over the feet and have non-slip bottoms. In addition to helping your pet keep their balance, booties also protect your pet’s feet from heat, cold, and foreign materials.

How do you help your senior pet feel comfortable? Leave a comment and let us know, and consider signing up for PetPlus to save on your pet’s medications, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more.


Momma Pitty Pumpkin Needs Help! And A Home!

When Sara Jackson found Momma Pitty Pumpkin pregnant on the streets of Charlotte, North Carolina, she took her right home, despite the fact that she already had a foster dog and two other dogs of her own.

“She had sores running down all of her legs, her nails were curled under, and her hips were showing,” Sara said. “She had obviously been living outside and was being used to make money for someone.”

A week after bringing her home, Momma gave birth to 8 beautiful pups, all of whom Sara was able to place with loving families.

“We were able to partner up with so many amazing people who gave us great connections with spaying and neutering and all of their vaccines,” Sara said. “It truly took an army to rescue this amazing group of babies.”

Once the puppies had been placed in homes, Sara was able to start focusing on Momma. Momma had a large mass on her back right hip that a vet had previously aspirated (drained), and said could be drained again. Sara hoped this would be taken care of when she took Momma in to be spayed, but after some testing, it was discovered that Momma had cancer. Later testing revealed that it was mast cell 2 cancer.

The mass was removed during Momma’s spay, and because the vet estimated that Momma was only 2 years-old, Sara decided that it would be worth the additional cost to go through with radiation to ensure that the cancer would not spread to the rest of her organs.

Fun Fur All Fundraiser For Momma’s Treatment

The additional cost, however, is not minimal. Radiation therapy will cost $6,000. To help raise the money, Sara is hosting an event in Charlotte on Mother’s Day. The event, which can be found on Facebook at Momma Pitty’s Run Fur Fun 5K and Silent Auction, will include a 5K run, a 1 mile walk, and a fun-filled day of live music, photographers, a silent auction, costume and talent contests, massages, and a pit bull kissing booth featuring Momma’s puppies at Dog Bar, where Sara works on the weekends.

Dog Bar is a dog-friendly off leash bar in Charlotte. It’s almost like a dog park, but with drinks and live music.

“Momma is always at the bar with me, most of the time she is caught ON the bar,” Sara said. “This is her favorite spot and is often seen begging people to pick her up to put her on the bar so that she can kiss everyone directly in the face.”

Adopt Momma!

If Momma sounds like the kind of loving dog you’d like to bring home, consider adopting her! Sara is fostering Momma for now, but hopes to find her a forever home.

A bit about Momma:

– Breed: Pit bull

– Age: Estimated to be 2 years-old

– Weight: 40 lbs.

Crate trained, potty trained, knows basic commands

Walks well on a leash, and can even walk off leash and will come back when called

– Well-socialized and loves people and other dogs

– Loves to swim!

“Her love for life just beams through her large Pitty smile,” Sara said. “She is not only beautiful on the outside — her soul just shines.”

And a note about Momma’s cancer:

“We do not want anyone to be discouraged because of the fact Momma has been diagnosed with cancer. Her mass has been removed; we are doing radiation as a precaution,” Sara said. “Many bully breeds are known for having this cancer and it is something that as a dog owner we feel you should be prepared for even in a healthy dog.  Cancer in dogs is a lot like cancer in people, you treat and do what you can, but you do not just cast the dog aside.”

As a thank you to Sara for all that she has done for Momma and her pups,we are offering her six months free of PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, boarding and more. We will also offer a free year of PetPlus to whoever adopts Momma to help them take care of her.

If you are interested in adopting Momma or supporting Sara’s fundraiser, visit the event’s Facebook page and leave a message, or leave a comment below and we’ll get back to you with Sara’s direct contact info. Good luck, Sara!




6 Tips for a Stress-Free Vet Visit

It’s the rare pet who actually enjoys a trip to the vet. In fact, such an animal is probably rarer than a unicorn. However, there are ways to make trips to the vet slightly more pleasant for everyone, although it will take a little more work and foresight to pave the way for a smooth vet visit.

1. Touch your pet like a vet would.

One of the reasons vet visits are so startling to pets is that the vet touches them in ways and places they aren’t accustomed to. You can help your pet feel comfortable with these unusual methods of touching by playing doctor and rehearsing a veterinary exam.

Your vet will examine your pet from head to tail, and may palpate – or gently press down using the hands – different areas of your pet’s body, like the neck and the belly. Lift up your pet’s tail, and run your hands all over your pet, including the feet and nails.

RELATED STORY: The Ever-Important Dog Physical Exam

2. Don’t get nervous.

Be aware of you own energy, because your pet can feed off your anxiety. If you realize you feel nervous on the day of the vet visit, be sure to take some deep, cleansing breaths to lower your heart rate. Stick to your regular routine, including walks, which will help to burn off that nervous energy.

3. Use a calming collar.

If your pet seems to really panic at the idea of a trip to the vet, then consider purchasing a calming collar for your cat or your dog. The soothing scents of chamomile and lavender may help to comfort and relax your pet.

RELATED STORY: How To Know If Your Dog Has Anxiety

4. Don’t use a carrier only for vet visits.

If your pet only sees the inside of the carrier when it’s time for the vet, then that little box is going to represent a cage of panic and grief for your animal. If you use a carrier at home as a safe place for your pet to snuggle and nap, then it won’t seem like such a big, stressful deal to hop in the carrier for transportation to the vet.

5. Practice car rides for other fun reasons.

Likewise, if your pet only rides in the car on the way to the vet, it’s going to be a very long car ride for both of you. Try taking your pet on other excursions in the car, for example, to drive your dog to a meadow for a hike.

RELATED STORY: 5 Steps To A Safe Drive With Your Dog

6. Use treats strategically.

If your cat enjoys catnip, then plan on using it strategically, because the effect only lasts about 5 to 15 minutes. Figure out the worst part of the vet visit for you; is it coaxing your cat into the carrier, or the part where you open the carrier for the vet? Use your kitty treats or catnip with those circumstances in mind to keep the effectiveness high.

Likewise, if you know you have a visit to the vet approaching, get a little stingy with your treats for your dog until it’s ‘go time’ for maximum effect. A dog with a belly that’s already loaded with treats isn’t going to be too interested in your bribery.

How do you keep your pet calm for a vet visit? Let us know by leaving a comment below! Sign up for PetPlus and save up to 75% on your pet’s medications plus discounts on boarding, supplies, and more. 


6 Common Pet Health Myths Debunked

Pet health is a complicated topic, and with so much information at our fingertips these days, it can sometimes be difficult to separate fact from fiction. There are a lot of myths floating around, and in some cases, believing them could be harmful to your pet’s well-being. Here we’ll look at 6 of the most common pet health myths, and then give you the facts!

Remember: never hesitate to contact your veterinarian if you have ANY questions about your pet’s health. Making that phone call can not only save you time and anxiety, it could also save your pet’s life.

MYTH #1: If a dog’s nose is warm or dry, it means that they are sick.

FACT: The temperature or wetness of a dog’s nose is no indication of their health status. Many dogs have a warm and dry nose when they first wake up, for example, and a wet and cold nose after drinking water. While a warm or dry nose is no indication of a health problem, you should contact your veterinarian if you ever notice any unusual changes to your dog’s nose, such as crusting, bleeding, or discharge.

MYTH #2: Cats get sick less often than dogs.

FACT: Cats can get sick just as often as dogs (even indoor cats), but they are more likely and more capable of hiding their symptoms than dogs — in fact, they are famous for doing so. This makes it all the more important to keep up with your cat’s annual visits to the vet so that your veterinarian can give your cat a thorough once-over and check for any health conditions that they might be hiding.

RELATED STORY: The Importance Of Taking Your Cat To The Vet

MYTH #3: Pets only need to be protected from heartworms in the summer months when mosquitoes are active.

FACT: The American Heartworm Society suggests that all pets — regardless of where they live — should be protected all year round. Heartworm disease is a potentially fatal condition, so make sure that your pet is protected with a heartworm preventative, such as a tablet or topical treatment.

MYTH #4: Dogs eat grass to make themselves throw up.

FACT: This myth gets a lot of play, but the truth is that while eating grass CAN cause vomiting, it is most likely not the reason that your dog is consuming it. Many dogs consume grass because they simply like the taste, because they are bored, or because they have learned that eating grass will start a fun game in which you chase your pal to get them to stop. Eating small amounts of grass shouldn’t be harmful to your dog, but make sure that they aren’t also eating poisonous plants or foxtails, and contact your veterinarian if the habit seems to be getting worse.

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MYTH #5: Feeding your pet garlic can rid them of tapeworms.

FACT: This myth most likely got started because of garlic’s pungent smell. It has also been suggested that garlic can treat and prevent fleas. The truth is that garlic won’t do a thing for tapeworms or fleas, and in fact, garlic is poisonous to pets and can cause anemia if consumed in large quantities. If you ever notice tapeworms (they look like small grains of rice) in your pet’s stool or near their rear end, contact your veterinarian. They will most likely prescribe a deworming medication. To protect your pet from fleas, use an oral or topical treatment.

MYTH #6: Pets take care of their own dental health, so you don’t need to brush their teeth.

FACT: Pets need all the help they can get when it comes to dental care. Most veterinarians agree that 75% or more of the health problems they see in pets are related to periodontal disease or gum disease, and studies have shown that most animals have signs of dental disease by 3 or 4 years old! While feeding crunchy dry food and giving your pet healthy chews or dental chews like Greenies can help to reduce some tartar buildup, you still need to brush your pet’s teeth. Brushing your pet’s teeth every day is the best course of action, but doing it at least once a week can go a long way in preventing dental problems.

Know any other pet health myths? Leave a comment and let us know, and consider signing up for PetPlus to save on your pet’s health care and more.