Why Home Pet Dental Care Is So Important 

Many pet owners think doggy or kitty breath is normal, but in fact it’s an early hallmark of periodontal disease. Once you notice your pet’s bad breath, dental disease is likely a foregone conclusion. The good news is that this condition is entirely preventable!

At Advantage Veterinary Center we’ve seen over and over again how a professional dental care program as well as at home pet dental care can benefit every dog and cat!

The Problem With Pet Dental Disease

Unfortunately, by the time pets reach 3 years of age, over 85% of them already have some form of dental disease. Genetics play a role in dental disease, but it’s also the result of a persistent lack of dental care, including regular brushing. 

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Advantage Veterinary Center’s Top Blogs of 2019 

Nothing causes us to mark the passage of time more than the beginning of a new year. Along with winter holiday celebrations, perhaps we can take time to  wind down and reflect on the year past. And although 2019 has its ups and downs, all in all we couldn’t be more grateful for the time we shared with you and your pets. 

One of the things we’ve been reflecting on at Advantage Veterinary Center is that owning a pet comes with lifelong learning. From exercise to a healthy diet, regular wellness, training, and fun things to do with your pet. There’s no shortage of topics to learn about. 

One way we support that learning is through our pet care blog. And brainstorming topics, writing, and publishing our blog has been our pleasure this year. We hope to provide our readers with practical, timely, and fun information about how to keep pets not only healthy, but thriving. So here we present our top blogs of 2019, and we hope you enjoy!

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Pets As Presents: To Gift Or Not To Gift

The holidays are upon us, and you may be getting giddy at the idea of adopting a wonderful pet to give to the animal lover in your life. Before you steam ahead, take some time to reflect on making pets as presents a part of your holiday season.

There are some special considerations with holiday pet adoption. For one thing, you don’t want a pet to end up back at the shelter or re-homed after the holidays are over. This decision requires careful planning and preparation. 

At Advantage Veterinary Center we’ve seen it all, and we have some thoughts on whether or not to give pets as presents for the holidays (or any time of year).

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The Grief that Comes After the Loss of a Pet

Losing a loved one changes you. The loss of someone close brings with it sadness, confusion, anger, bewilderment, and grief. Interestingly – though not surprisingly for those of us who have experienced it –  the scientific community is finding is that the loss of a pet is equal to that of human loss, with the same fundamental impact to those grieving. 

Animal companionship fills a void, a specific need for humans to bond with an unconditional friend. If you have recently lost a pet, you may wonder how you will navigate the feelings, especially during the holidays. Your friends at Advantage Veterinary Center understand your feelings and we are here to offer some support through recommendations and simple steps.

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Pet Diabetes: Early Detection & Successful Management Have Positive Effects

A gray-striped cat with golden eyes lays on a colorful bedspread, looking wary.

All animals are unique in the ways they behave, but there are generally tell-tale signs that something’s amiss. Sure, domestic and wild animals alike may try to hide symptoms of illness or injury, but there’s no mistaking excessive thirst and increased urination in our four-legged friends. With undiagnosed pet diabetes, pets may beg for food and continue to lose weight. Early detection is the key to successful long-term management, and marks the beginning of a chapter in the lives of both pets and their owners.

Risk Factors

Pet diabetes can develop at a higher rate in overweight or obese pets. Higher risk pets may include senior pets, those with Cushing’s disease, hyperthyroidism, or chronic pancreatitis, pets on steroids, and pregnant females. Older female dogs are more likely to be diagnosed than older male dogs; senior male cats are considered higher risk than aging female cats.

That being said, pet diabetes can occur in any pet regardless of age or lifestyle. Genetics may also play a part.

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What’s Up, Weirdo? Decoding Strange Feline Behavior

Cats make great pets, but not because they’re normal. Indeed, as most cat owners will tell you, one of the reasons they’re fun to live with is because they’re a bit odd. They keep strange hours, do some pretty weird things (when they’re not sleeping), and keep us guessing from one moment to the next. 

While observing and interpreting feline behavior is a fantastic pastime, there could be more going on beneath the surface, commanding equal attention. Careful observation is key when deciphering whether a behavior is normal, or cause for concern.

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A Stinky Situation: Dogs who Eat Poop

A dog licking a tree trunk

Most of us cringe now and again at something our dog does. Drinking from the toilet, rolling in dead animals at the beach, and licking their own backside all come to mind (ew!). But nothing tops dogs who eat poop.

If you’ve never witnessed your dog doing this, consider yourself lucky. But if you’ve ever seen your dog raid the litter box, “clean up” after himself, or munch deer droppings in the yard, know that you’re not alone. 

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Fighting a Frequent Feline Foe: Kidney Disease in Cats

A gray cat with wide, golden eyes looks a little concerned

Cats are pretty tough cookies. Resourceful and resilient, accounts of felines surviving dire situations of all sorts abound through recorded history. Cats are not totally immune to danger and disease, however…

In some ways the feline is quite vulnerable. They are exquisitely sensitive when it comes to toxins. They are also prone to several diseases and conditions, among these renal issues. 

Kidney disease in cats is a frequently diagnosed and potentially serious problem. Together with you, though, Advantage Veterinary Center can help you keep your cat healthier and happier in spite of this diagnosis.

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Summer Scares: Dealing with Noise Anxiety in Pets

Thunderstorm season and the 4th of July are quickly approaching – a time of year that many pet owners dread. ‘Tis the season of trembling, anxious pets who are either destructive, try to escape, or hide for hours at the first crack of thunder or pop of fireworks. An estimated 10 million dogs (and lots and lots of cats) suffer from noise-related anxiety, which often leads to a full-blown phobia.

Because loud noises are an inevitable part of life, the team at Advantage Veterinary Center has come up with some strategies for alleviating noise anxiety in pets.

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Introducing Babies, Kids and Pets

Kids and pets are a natural mix. Pets can help teach kids empathy, responsibility, and love. They can foster self esteem and confidence in kids as well, and are wonderful, non-judgemental companions for kids of all ages.

By taking some time to prepare and be aware of how to introduce baby and kids to pets, you’ll be setting everyone up for success and a match made in heaven.

Preparing Your Pet for A New Baby

All the new sights, smells, and sounds of a new baby can be confusing for pets. And, although pets can be great learners, they can also become jealous of this new little person. Here are some great ways to prepare yourself and your pet for a new baby:

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