Hurricane season is upon us here in Florida, which makes being prepared for an emergency more important than ever. Most of us have the essentials on hand and a plan in place in case of evacuation, but not everyone factors the family pet into the equation. Hurricane preparedness for pets is critical for their safety and health, and King’s Trail Animal Hospital can help!
In the event of a hurricane or other natural disaster, the safest place for your pet is with you. Never leave your pet behind if you have to evacuate, as abandoned pets are at serious risk for injury or death. Exchange house keys and evacuation plans with a few trusted neighbors or local friends, and plan to evacuate each other’s pets if one of you is caught outside evacuation lines. Continue…
Allergic reactions are common among humans, but our pets may also experience problems caused by allergens in their environment. Along with dust, flea, and food allergies, oak and pine pollen allergies in pets have become more and more common this time of year.
What are Pine and Oak Pollen Allergies in Pets?
In the springtime, different varieties of pine and oak trees release significant amounts of pollen into the air. This can aggravate seasonal allergies in our pets, and it’s difficult to avoid, as the pollen can drift over a large area.
The pollen released by the trees lands on your pet’s paws, coat, and skin. Specialized immune cells, called mast cells, leap into action on your pet’s behalf. When the immune system is stimulated by allergens, it produces a protein called histamine. Histamine causes an inflammatory response in the tissues, leading to itchy and inflamed skin. Continue…
Regardless of how long you’ve lived in Duval County, you have likely encountered your share of wildlife in your yard, on a trail, at the park, or on the beach. The countless species of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and insects certainly make life more beautiful. But sometimes these species can make life more difficult for humans and pets who share their space.
With over 30 species of snakes in the Jacksonville area, several of which are poisonous, bumping into a snake while you’re with your dog can pose a unique challenge. Many dogs don’t have a natural aversion to snakes, and their curiosity and eagerness to investigate could put them, and you, at risk. Understanding and applying the principles of snake safety for dogs is key to preventing a tragedy.
As pet owners, we do everything we can to keep our pets happy and healthy, even in the midst of our busy lives. Our focus on preventive care, daily exercise and play, and lots of snuggles makes it easy to overlook year-round heartworm prevention. Unfortunately, our busy schedules, along with a proliferation of false information about heartworm, have led to the steady rise of heartworm among U.S. pets over the past 5 years.
Annual screening and year-round prevention of heartworm should be essential components of your pet care plan.
Heartworm disease is caused by parasitic worms, Dirofilaria immitis, which are transmitted to pets by mosquitos. Mosquitos can pick up the parasite by feeding on an infected animal, such as a dog, cat, raccoon, coyote, or opossum.
Once inside your pet’s body, the immature worms travel throughout the bloodstream, eventually taking up residence in the heart, lungs, and accompanying blood vessels. Over a period of several months to a year, worms can grow up to a foot in length and cause pain, discomfort, and significant damage to important internal organs. Continue…