Newsletter

The veterinarians and staff at the Beach Veterinary Clinic are pleased to provide you with an online newsletter. This fun and fact-filled newsletter is updated on a regular basis.

Included in the newsletter are articles pertaining to pet care, information on our animal hospital, as well as news on the latest trends and discoveries in veterinary medicine.

Please enjoy the newsletter!

Current Newsletter Topics

Lyme Disease Is the New (Bad) Summer Trend

Along with the heat, it looks like Lyme Disease is also expected to be on the rise this summer. A disease once attributed to deer is now shifting its blame to the decline of foxes, who lunch on mice, which in turn lunch on ticks before they’re able to lunch on us and our pets.

Studies reveal that young dogs appear to be more susceptible to the disease than older ones. The infection typically develops after the deer tick has been attached to the dog for 18 hours or more.

Here are a few signs that your dog may be infected:

  • Stiff and inflamed joints (producing lameness)
  • Sensitive to the touch
  • Lack of appetite
  • Depressed behavior
  • Kidney damage (producing vomiting, diarrhea, increased urination)

If you see signs of Lyme Disease, bring your dog to a veterinarian for an examination. Treatment typically consists of an antibiotic that can be taken from home. Your veterinarian can also recommend different collars and sprays that work to repel ticks in the first place.

22 Feline Facts

• Tylenol, Advil and chocolate are poisonous to cats.

• The ancestor of all domestic cats is the African Wild Cat which still exists today.

• In ancient Egypt, killing a cat was a crime punishable by death.

• In ancient Egypt, cats were preserved as mummies and embalmed mice were placed with them in their tombs. In one ancient city, over 300,000 cat mummies were found.

• The first cat show was in 1871 at the Crystal Palace in London.

• Today there are about 100 distinct breeds of the domestic cat.

• Genetic mutation created the domestic cat, which is tame from birth.

• Like birds, cats have a homing ability that uses its biological clock, the angle of the sun, and the earth's magnetic field.

• Hunting is not instinctive for cats. Kittens born to non-hunting mothers may never learn to hunt.

• Cats bury their feces to cover their trails from predators.

• Mother cats teach their kittens to use the litter box.

• Among other tasks, cats can be taught to use a toilet, come, sit, beg, eat with their paws, heel, jump through a hoop, play a piano, play dead, roll over, open a door, hide food in boxes, shake, and fetch.

• Cats sleep 16 to 18 hours per day. When cats are asleep, they are still alert to incoming stimuli. If you poke the tail of a sleeping cat, it will respond accordingly.

• In Great Britain, black cats are thought to bring good luck.

• Besides smelling with their nose, cats can smell with an additional organ called the Jacobson's organ, located in the upper surface of the mouth.

• Cats can't taste sweets.

• The chlorine in fresh tap water irritates sensitive parts of the cat's nose. Let tap water sit for 24 hours before giving it to a cat.

• The average cat food meal is the equivalent to about five mice.

• The catgut formerly used as strings in tennis rackets and musical instruments does not come from cats. Catgut actually comes from sheep, hogs, and horses.

• A large majority of white cats with blue eyes are deaf. White cats with only one blue eye are deaf only in the ear closest to the blue eye. White cats with orange eyes do not have this disability.

• Neutering a cat extends its life span by two or three years.

• Ten human years translate to about 60 cat years. A one year old cat is similar in age to an 18 year old human.

Natural Canine Behaviors

Domesticated dogs are most likely descendants of wolves. Many behaviors naturally exhibited by dogs are reflections of wolf-like ancestry, rooted in instincts thousands of years old. Some of these behaviors are at odds with the wishes of the dog owner, who wants a domesticated companion that responds to human cues. Understanding the natural basis of canine behavior can be the best place to start a successful human-animal relationship.

Social Behavior

Dogs retain some of the basic behaviors of wolves, including living in relatively small social groups, following a leader, and exhibiting territorial protection. Dogs have relatively stable, hierarchical social structures that mediate interactions between group members and help them avoid regular aggressive confrontations. Complex body signaling of dominant and submissive postures is involved in the establishment and maintenance of these hierarchies. Therefore, in domestic life, it is important for humans to maintain a leadership role in the household.

Social behavior establishes hierarchy.

It's Important to Socialize Your Dog
to Avoid Aggressive Behaviors


Communication

Dogs use a combination of vocal, visual and olfactory cues to transmit a variety of messages from friendly greetings to threats. A vocalization should be evaluated in association with the dog's body language and the situation in which the vocalization is delivered. Visually, dogs use their body posture and expressions to relay messages. A dog that uses body postures to increase apparent size is usually trying to drive off another party. Conversely, dogs that use body postures to minimize their size are often encouraging approach. Olfactory cues play an important role in communication. The scents are often at levels undetectable by humans.

Sexual Behavior

Intact female dogs will come into heat about every six months. During early estrus, the female dog becomes more playful and urinates more frequently. Non-neutered male dogs often exhibit behaviors such as urine marking, mounting, and roaming. Neutering often curtails these undesirable behaviors.

Chewing/Ingestive Behavior

It is normal for dogs to have a desire to chew on a variety of items, and they usually seek items to chew if they are not provided. Dog owners should provide their pets with numerous chew toys.

Bathroom Behavior

Dogs do not instinctively know to eliminate outdoors. They start to move away from their nesting area to eliminate when they are about three weeks of age and usually continue to avoid eliminating close to their sleeping and eating areas throughout life. At about eight weeks of age, puppies develop a preference for eliminating on a particular kind of surface (grass, dirt, concrete, etc). This desire often becomes a lifelong preference. Dogs may use urination to signal submission to a person or another animal. This is a normal communication behavior that usually is exhibited by young dogs. Dogs also may eliminate in situations of extreme fear.

Doggy Couch-Surfing: The Newest Trend in Dog Care

The couch-surfing phenomena is raging across Europe and the US as one of the most affordable and interesting ways to travel. And now it looks like Fido can join you in the trend. New to the list of overnight options for your dog is DogVacay, structured after the more familiar couch-surfing model.

How it Works

The online site allows pet owners to look up people in a specific area who host dogs. A host is expected to give your pet the same loving care that you would expect them to give their own animal – plenty of exercise and attention, meals, and of course, a doggy “couch” to rest their heads. The service costs approximately 25-30 a day, depending on your dog’s needs, and the services offered.


Couch Surfing

Scared a host doesn’t fit the bill for your Fido?

Every host is interviewed by DogVacay, and owners are encouraged to meet the host families, the majority of which are dog owners themselves. The website provides bios, home photos, location, prices, and other relevant notes on their capabilities as dog-sitters. The company also offers insurance and GPS-enabled dog collars, should you want extra guarantees.

The Santa-Monica based company debuted their services in New York and Los Angeles in March, and is now available throughout the US and Canada. Though kennels still remain a good and viable option, DogVacay provides yet another possibility for Fido as you start planning your own summer vacay.

VIDEO - How To Brush Your Cat's Teeth

Regular brushing of a cat's teeth can help prevent oral disease that can spread bacteria to other parts of a cat's body. Watch this video to get an idea of how to start the practice of brushing your cat's teeth.


Tennessee Man Leaves Mansion to Cats


Tennessee Man Leaves Mansion to Cats


A man in Tennessee has left his 4,000 square foot mansion and $250,000 savings to his two cats, Frisco and Jack. Leon Sheppard Sr., who was president of the local United Food and Commercial Workers Union, passed away last year. In addition to his worldly possessions, the cats must also remain cared for in his Memphis home.

Sheppard has five children, but they won’t see any of his fortune until the eldest cat, Frisco, passes away. Jack, the younger feline, may be moved out of the house, but Sheppard’s will stipulates that he must also remain cared for. While Sheppard’s family did not comment on the will, neighbors confirmed that Sheppard, unsurprisingly, was very fond of his cats.