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Part II: Burn Wounds, Freezing Cold

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Image Credit: Facebook Fan Tom Van Dam

Burn Wounds, Part II: Freezing Cold
Extreme cold may lead to thermal burns of skin, muscle, or bone and supporting tissues. Similar  to heat burns, tissue damage from cold has varying degrees of severity. Superficial thermal burns that cause minimal tissue damage and that are reversible are termed ‘frost-nip’. More severe deep burns compromise blood flow and result in frostbite. Complete extent of the thermal damage can be difficult to determine based on appearance alone. For the remainder of this article, thermal injury will be in reference to extremes in low temperatures resulting in frostbite damage. Read More >





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Part I: Burn Wounds, Scalding Hot

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Image Credit: dogtime.com

Scalding Hot: Burn Wounds

Burn injuries can occur in and around the home or as a result of a natural disaster. Immediate first aid can make a big difference in long-term prognosis for burn injuries. Appropriate first aid treatment and medical care is determined by the cause of the burn. Thermal, chemical, and electrical are the three primary sources contributing to animal burn injuries.This article will address thermal injuries; specifically, high heat or fire related injuries.

Extreme heat that results in a thermal burn or smoke/gas inhalation is an emergency. A variety of heat sources that commonly burn pets include fires, space heaters, hot liquids, hair dryers, cooking surfaces, the sun and surfaces heated by the sun, and hot metal parts on vehicles or equipment. Emergency care should be sought if heat-related injury occurs. Read More >





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Lumps and Bumps: Warts in a Puppy’s Mouth

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Image Credit: MR Facebook fan Julie Stanley’s pup Cacey

Lumps and Bumps: Warts in a Puppy’s Mouth

What are those bumps?

A “wart” is an abnormal growth of tissue and can occur just about anywhere on the body. Canine oral papillomas are warts that are caused by a papillomavirus. While there are numerous strains of papillomaviruses, canine oral papilloma virus (COPV) is the most common strain and is benign (not harmful).  When COPV infects tissue and replicates, it causes abnormal tissue growths on mucous membranes that range in appearance from small white/pink bumps to unique lumps with fronds. Oral papillomas typically occur in bunches or clusters rather than singular growths and are most common in the mouth and on the lips. Occasionally, COPV warts occur in unusual locations. Read More >





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Hard Pad Disease: Canine Distemper

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Image Credit: Via IG @ali_theyellowlab

Hard Pad Disease: Canine Distemper

Vaccination to prevent canine distemper virus has been so effective that it has largely eliminated the disease from urban communities; thus, many people are unaware of virus’s impact. Dogs can also suffer from other diseases like Hemangiosarcoma and Leukaemia. Owners may want to know about products that can help heal their dog, like yunnan baiyao, to help stop bleeding. Distemper virus is highly contagious and actively circulates in wildlife populations and in stray or unvaccinated dogs. The disease can affect multiple organ systems and clinical signs of disease vary. There is no cure for the often fatal disease even when supportive care is provided.

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Fat Could Heal Your Dog

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Image credit: John Arrington 

Stem Cell Therapy for Orthopedic Injuries

First, let’s clarify: General obesity will NOT heal your pet’s orthopedic injury. In fact, overweight pets suffer unnecessarily from increased wear-and-tear on joints. However, fat tissue is a great source for stem cell harvest and it only requires a small amount. Stem cells may be utilized to heal many common ailments in your pet, including orthopedic injuries and osteoarthritis. Using the body’s own tissue as a way to heal itself is a type of regenerative medicine.

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Something Fishy: Anal Sac Impaction

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Image credit: Erin E.

Something Fishy: Anal Sac Impaction

While not the most attractive topic to discuss, anal sac problems are fairly common in our canine companions.  Let’s gain a better understanding of what anal sacs are, learn how they may be problematic and what symptoms look like, and explore helpful tips for prevention.

Anal sacs are a set of specialized glands located near the anus. With a function thought to be related to scent-marking, the glands produce oily secretions; each dog makes its own unique combination of scents in these glands which contributes to a not-so-pleasant fish-stench aroma. Like human fingerprints distinguish people from one another, smell allows dogs to recognize other dogs, lending to the common greeting of sniffing each others’ rear ends.  Canines do not have a patent on this “fun” design; other species (ex. Skunks) have a similar sac. Dogs, like skunks,can express their anal sacs when stressed or in fear, but it is not routinely utilized as a defensive tactic. Healthy dogs will express their anal sacs when feces presses against them during defecation.

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Does My Dog Have Alzheimer’s?

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Image Credit: Laura Held “My buddy Copper”

Cognitive Dysfunction

Dogs can experience a decline in mental health, or cognitive function, as they age.  Physical and chemical changes in the brain that occur in some aging pets mirror the changes found in human Alzheimer’s patients.

Behavioral changes are often the first reported symptoms of declining mental health, though dog owners often underreport behavior changes in elderly pets not realizing help is available. Generally, cognitive dysfunction is diagnosed in dogs over ten years of age but recent research has found early brain changes and coinciding symptoms in younger dogs. Read More >





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Aural Hematomas

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Image Credit: Facebook Fan Tina B.  

Aural Hematomas

An aural hematoma is a soft swelling of the ear flap due to an abnormal accumulation of blood between the skin of the ear and the underlying ear cartilage. This fluid is made up of blood or bloody fluid; sometimes it can also contain infection. In theory, blood leaks from the ear vessels when the vessels become weakened. This can be due to either chronic disease or ear trauma.  Aural hematomas can occur in a variety of animal species including dogs and cats. Read More >





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Growing Pains in Juvenile Large Breed Dogs

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Image Credit: “Bella & Bear” Boyt Harness Company 

Should I Be Concerned About Panosteitis?

“Growing pains” refers to a painful orthopedic condition in young dogs called panosteitis: a condition of the bone that often presents as lameness (limping) due to bone swelling. Panosteitis occurs in the leg bones of dogs and appears to affect only rapidly growing large or giant-breed dogs. Small dogs and cats are rarely affected. The male German Shepherd is considered the poster-dog for this condition, though many active sporting and working dog breeds including retrievers, pointers, hounds, setters, shepherds, and other large and giant breeds can be affected by it. Read More >