To our members of the military, active and veterans, we say THANK YOU for your service and wish everyone a blessed Memorial Day. As we enjoy friends and family today, we ask you to take a moment to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. God Bless this great nation we call home.
Our final installment of our National Pet Week blog series wraps it all up – You’ve invested in your pets for the love of a lifetime, we know you want to do the same for them. Thanks to better care, pets are living longer now than they ever have before—and as pets get older, they need extra care and attention. Regular veterinary examinations can detect problems in older pets before they become advanced or life-threatening. They also can improve your pet’s chances for a longer and healthier life. Learn what’s “normal” and what may signal a reason for concern about an aging pet.
As pets age, senior care becomes all that more important for them, just like us humans. YAH offers a range of senior care programs that can be best suited to your pet individually. Call us any time to discuss! Also check out this link from the AVMA about senior pet care: https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/pet-owners/petcare/senior-pets
We hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s blog series, as true celebration of what makes our pets so special to us!
We never know when or where an emergency will happen. As a pet owner, you need to plan ahead, and include your pets in your family’s emergency plan. Know what to do in case of an emergency, how to assemble emergency and first aid kits, and how to properly identify your pets so your family can be reunited if you’re ever separated.
Use this link to make sure your plan is in place in case of emergency: https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/pet-owners/emergency-care
Well, unfortunately there isn’t much travel going on these days with the stay at home and social distancing that we are all observing. But, there’s hope! As we flatten the curve, our officials are easing these restrictions and we’ll all be raring to go again, visiting family, friends and picking back up on some of those vacations perhaps that we’ve been putting off.
When that time comes, be prepared to travel thoughtfully if you’re taking your pet with you. Traveling with pets requires advance planning and coordination to keep everybody safe. Whether you’re taking a short car trip or flying to another state or country, getting your pet safely to your destination requires special precautions. These range from proper restraints during travel to veterinary exams and travel certificates. Plan ahead, and know exactly what’s needed when you travel with pets of different species.
Sometimes the hardest part of the trip isn’t when you get to the destination, it’s the trip itself! Here’s some tips on how to get your pets loaded up in your vehicle and keep them calm and safe while traveling: https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/pet-owners/petcare/pets-vehicles
Regular preventive care is critical to keep pets healthy and improve both quality and length of life. It also can save owners a great deal of money in the long run. Don’t wait to take your pet to see us when it’s visibly sick or injured. Pets often hide signs of illness, and regular check-ups are vital to catching health problems early. Early treatment means better health for your pet.
We know owning a pet can seem expensive at times. The AVMA has these tips for helping manage your pet expenses: https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/pet-owners/petcare/money-tips-caring-pet-owners
Exercise – An estimated 52.7% of dogs and 57.9% cats in the United States are overweight or obese. Many people face the same issue, and we encourage pet owners to get regular exercise—with their pets! This improves cardiovascular health, helps both pets and people maintain a healthy weight, supports good mental health for both owner and pet, and strengthens the human-animal bond. But how do we do this in an era of social distancing? Click this link for some tips and ideas how to get your animals out, but do so in a safe manner: https://dogtime.com/dog-health/85932-walking-dog-social-distancing
Nutrition – Nutrition is important to both weight management and overall health. YAH can advise you on how much to feed your pet and whether the diet you’re providing is healthful – including both meals and treats! We can develop a comprehensive weight loss and sustaining program to then keep your animal at its ideal weight.
Check out this link too from the AVMA for advice on things you can do yourself, and how to find and maintain your dog’s best weight: https://www.avma.org/resources/pet-owners/petcare/your-pets-healthy-weight
Well, we’ll take this one with a grain of salt…..but regardless of the current circumstances, socialization of your pets can be a huge benefit to they (and you) living a healthier life together. Puppies have a short time window for optimal socialization, and that requires exposure to multiple different surfaces, people of all backgrounds, and various new situations. But what about the puppies who happen to be within that window now, during this time of necessary social distancing due to COVID-19? How can they be socialized so they can grow to be confident and happy dogs for the rest of their lives?
The American Kennel Club has a nice write-up on how to socialize your dogs during these times of the ‘new norm’. You can visit their website for some tips and ideas how to accomplish this goal during our era of social distancing : https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/training/socialize-puppy-times-social-distancing/
The thrill of making the decision to get a new cat or dog can be so joyful! You’re ready to talk to breeders or go to the shelter or rescue. There’s sooooo many beautiful animals in need of a home, which one to choose?!?!
Choosing the right pet for your lifestyle and situation may be the single most important decision you make when you choose to become a pet owner. Not every breed, particularly with dogs, may make sense depending on your home life – if you have kids, live in an apartment versus a large home, have a large yard, etc.
Select the pet that’s right for your family’s lifestyle, and make a commitment for that pet’s life. Even if you’ve already welcomed a pet into your home, we at YAH can help you better understand the social and healthcare needs of your individual pet. We’re here to help!
Here are two links to resources that could be helpful in choosing the right pet:
- Selecting a pet for your family (https://www.avma.org/resources/pet-owners/petcare/selecting-pet-your-family)
- Responsible Pet Ownership (https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/pet-owners/responsible-pet-ownership)
National Pet Week celebrates the pets that enrich our lives and encourages responsible pet care every day of the year. Created by the AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Assocation) and the Auxiliary to the AVMA in 1981, it’s observed during the first full week of May each year.
Whether companion, comedian, confidant, or protector, our pets are always there for us. National Pet Week celebrates this bond and encourages pet owners to be certain to provide their best friends with everything needed for a happy, healthy life.
All this week YAH will be sending daily blog posts covering some things you can do to celebrate your furbabies this week. Have fun with it! Share with us some pictures of your pets, let’s celebrate what makes them so special to us!
A story was run last night on the 6:30 NBC Nightly News regarding a pair of cats in New York that have tested positive for Coronavirus. This comes on the heels of the developments at the Bronx Zoo regarding a few tigers who also tested positive. We understand this information may be causing some concern regarding not only your pets health, but also your own. Questions like: Can I get the virus from my pets? Can the virus spread easily amongst domesticated animals?
We consulted with the CDC regarding some of these points. The CDC has published some of the following key points, worth keeping in mind:
- Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Some cause illness in people, and others cause illness in certain types of animals.
- Some coronaviruses that infect animals can sometimes be spread to people, but this is rare.
- At this time, there is no evidence that animals play a significant role in spreading the virus that causes COVID-19.
- Based on the limited information available to date, the risk of animals spreading COVID-19 to people is considered to be low.
- We are still learning about this virus, but it appears that it can spread from people to animals in some situations.
The CDC offers this website for further information: COVID-19 and Animals Frequently Asked Questions.
The veterinary world’s main public advocate, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), continues to consult with the CDC regarding any possible links between human and animal interactions with the disease. We at YAH are also in direct contact with the NCVMA on regular updates regarding this situation. In the meantime, until further information and data is available, the protocol remains the same (guidelines created and endorsed by both the CDC and AVMA):
- People sick with COVID-19 limit contact with animals until more information is known about the virus.
- When possible, another member of the household should care for the pet.
- If possible, the infected person should avoid contact with the pet, including petting, snuggling, being kissed or licked, and sharing food.
- If an infected person must care for the pet while sick, he/she should wash their hands before and after interacting with animals.
Please feel free to contact YAH if you have any further questions and check back with our blog and Covid-19 resource section of our website.