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Spring Tips for the Health of Your Dog

Get some tips about maintaining the health of your dog and test your knowledge with my Spring Questionnaire.

As winter’s chill surrenders to spring’s warming light, let’s think about what we can do to maintain the health of our pets.

Spring is the best time to start your dog's flea and tick prevention if you are not using it year round. Fleas are the number one source of skin disease in dogs. Ticks can spread Lyme disease. By starting before you see fleas and ticks, you can prevent a problem from getting out of control.

At Brightwood Animal Hospital, we recommend Vectra or Revolution for topical flea and tick prevention. We are not seeing the resistance problems with these products like we are with some of the others.

If your dog isn’t on heartworm preventative all year long, now is the time to begin protection. A worm that lives inside your dog’s heart causes heartworm disease. The worm develops from a larva that is spread by mosquitoes.

Even if your dog is never around other dogs, he or she is certainly at risk of being bitten by a mosquito in the Mentor area when outside. We can perform a simple blood test that will make sure your dog doesn’t have heartworm disease. After confirming everything is all right you can start giving a monthly preventative. 

After a long winter cooped up indoors, spring is the perfect time to let your pet work off those extra few pounds. Grab a leash and head off to the Mentor Dog Park or around the block. Remember to start out with short periods of exercise and increase your walks over a few weeks time.

Review your pet's diet. Choose a quality brand of food and avoid changes in diet. People food is not good for dogs and may contain more fat than is healthy. I often recommend supplements to make sure your pet gets everything he or she needs for great health.

Lawn fertilizers and pesticides make for a great lawn, but may cause problems for your pet. Remember to keep them off the grass for 24 hours after applying anything to your lawn. Keep dog away from your spring plantings and flower beds.

If you can answer "yes" to these questions you and your canine companion are ready for spring!  

 

Spring Questionnaire

 1.      Is your pet on a flea and tick preventative?

          Yes - An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

          No - Fleas are a major cause of skin problems in pets.

2.      Is your dog on Heartworm Preventative?

          Yes – Congratulations for preventing this life threatening disease.

          No - Heartworm disease is life threatening and preventative can be started as 

          soon  as   a puppy is weaned.

3.      Does your dog have an established exercise routine?

          Yes – You and your dog can stay fit together.

           No – Obesity can lead to other serious health problems.

4.      Is your dog on a daily supplement?

          Yes – Supplements support good health.

          No - Finicky eaters may not get all the vitamins and nutrients needed for good health.

5.      Does your dog dig in the yard or chew things he or she shouldn’t?

          Yes – There are several products to deter digging and chewing.

          No – Your dog is happy and well adjusted.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Dan Sutterlin June 09, 2011 at 05:05 PM
If you can answer "yes" to these questions you and your canine companion are ready for spring!.......... 5. Yes, my dog digs in the yard and chews thing. I guess I'm ready for spring!!

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