Dear Daisy Dog: When I chop vegetables for soups, stews and other dishes, I invariably drop some pieces onto the floor, where my dogs immediately devour them. I worry that some of the veggies may be toxic. Which should I be especially careful about? Daisy Responds: Most vegetables are safe for us dogs – except onions, garlic and chives. They can damage red blood cells and cause anemia, so make sure they don’t fall from your cutting board. If one of your dogs has a history of calcium oxalate bladder stones, it’s best to avoid oxalate-containing vegetables, such as leafy greens (including rhubarb), beets and potatoes. The root of the jicama is safe for dogs, but the seeds and other above-ground parts of the plant are toxic. Because the root is usually sold by itself, you shouldn’t have a problem unless you grow jicama in your garden. Some vegetables, such as cauliflower, produce gas, so you should be careful not to let large quantities drop to the floor. Otherwise, most vegetables are tasty, low-calorie, nutrient-rich, high-fiber treats your dogs can enjoy.
Bernville Veterinary Clinic has a special place in its heart for groups that share our commitment to caring for those in our society that are at the greatest risk …. that’s why we are a strong supporter of Grey Muzzle, which removes vulnerable senior and special-needs dogs from the shelter environment and places them in foster homes where they can thrive. Grey Muzzle is an important part of the Animal Rescue League of Berks County. The shelter environment is a stressful and scary place for all animals, but for older dogs it is especially traumatic. Unforutnately senior dogs are often overlooked in favor of young puppies. The Grey Muzzle foster program places these dogs in foster care where they receive the necessary medical and dental care they need to make them adoptable. Since the program was created in 2009, Grey Muzzle has adopted out more than 250 senior dogs! Want to learn more about Grey Muzzle, or join their foster family network? Contact Marcy Tocker at email@example.com. You can also become a part of GMARP -Grey Muzzle Association of Retired Pooches, which provides 100 percent of the funding for the program. Just download the application and get involved!
Dear Daisy Dog: You recommend brushing a dog’s teeth, but to be honest, it’s all I can do to make sure my kids brush their teeth. Isn’t there an easier way to care for my dog’s teeth and gums? What do you think of water additives? Daisy Responds: By three years of age, 80 percent of us dogs have dental disease. Unfortunately, disease in the mouth can spread elsewhere, compromising kidney, liver and heart function. So it’s important to minimize the plaque and tartar that give rise to dental disease. The “Essential healthymouth” anti-plaque water additives are effective at decreasing plaque in dogs and cats. The Veterinary Oral Health Council evaluated multiple research studies and granted these products the VOHC Seal of Acceptance in recognition of their efficacy. Since other water additives have not been approved by the VOHC, consumers have no way of knowing whether they really work. Your dog undoubtedly would prefer a product shown to be effective. You also can reduce your dog’s plaque and tartar if you feed a dental diet, offer dental treats and use a mouth spray or oral gel. For a list of effective products, visit www.vohc.org. February is National Pet Dental Health Month, so this is a good time to have the veterinarians at Bernville Veterinary Clinic evaluate your dog’s mouth and recommend ways to help enhance his oral health care.
We first met Rocky when he came into our clinic on a Tuesday afternoon after being attacked by an unknown animal. He had bite wounds over both of his front legs, his chest and his face. Rocky had lost so much blood we were not sure he would make it. Slowly but surely over the next few days, Rocky improved enough to be discharged to his family on Christmas Eve. Even though he makes daily trips into our office for bandage changes he is expected to make a full recovery.
Our very own Dr. Pickett landed in the Reading Eagle this week explaining the best ways to give your dog or cat medicine. Check out the story.