All in Animal Health and Welfare

Animal Health And Welfare: Laminitis

What do some of us think of when Spring rains bring lush green grass? Laminitis! During the Spring (and Fall), sunny days and cool nights create a surge of sugar in the grass. For horses, ponies, donkeys and even zebras, a fast intake of soluble carbohydrates (sugars and starch) can cause laminitis. So what is laminitis?

     The flu has recently caused many people to be sick, and even die. Animals can get the flu, too. There were several cases of dog flu reported in the Bay Area just in the last few months. We know that humans can get the flu from other humans and dogs can get the flu from other dogs. Viruses, as well as bacteria, fungi and parasites are all zoonotic. A zoonotic disease is one that can be transmitted from animals to humans- an example is the H1N1 swine flu influenza virus. Can we catch the flu from our pets and could we give our pets the flu? The general consensus is that while we can both catch a cold, the viruses that cause these colds are different.

     Do you know your pets’ ‘normals’? The letters TPR stand for Temperature, Pulse and Respiration. These are the basic vital signs you should be familiar with when it comes to your adult pets. I’m going to throw a B in there to represent behavior- is the behavior you are seeing normal for your pet?

     Rex and I both use a common homeopathic treatment called Rescue Remedy when we get stressed out. It helps Rex when his McNab friend harasses and jumps on him, and it helps me when I need to fly on a plane. Essentially a flower essence, Rescue Remedy keeps Rex from going to that manic place of spinning in circles when he can’t get away from his doggie friend, and keeps me from crying when the plane goes through a little turbulence.