DOG HEALTH AND MEDICINE

Your Dog As a Blood Donor

If a large dog like a Lab or a golden retriever is rushed to the emergency room after getting hit by a car, he might need four or five units of blood in just a couple of hours. Even a dog who gets heat stroke might need two to four units of plasma (the watery component of blood) before stabilizing. A dog who experiences bleeding complications during an operation is going to need blood, too. Where does all this extra blood come from?

Dear Doctor: A pill instead of surgery for laryngeal paralysis?

I appreciated your June 2019 article on how to surgically fix the labored breathing that comes with laryngeal paralysis, which affects a significant number of older, larger dogs. But I also heard about a drug to treat the disease and make breathing easier. Can a drug really take the place of an operation?

Is Your Veterinarian Practicing Narrative Medicine?

If you bring your dog to the veterinarians office because he has started urinating in the house, does the doctor simply perform a clinical exam followed by x-rays and blood work, or does she add in some questions that help her learn the story of the dogs life? For instance, a vet might ask, Has anything changed lately? Have you moved, or has someone moved into or out of your household? Has there been a divorce or some other difficult event? That way, the doctor may find out that the dog is stressed, perhaps because he is sensing your own stress, and that is what is making him urinate indoors.

Dear Doctor: Supplements for arthritis prevention?

Ive been giving a joint supplement to my 2-year-old Yellow Lab since I brought her home at the age of 8 weeks in order to help prevent problems from hip dysplasia.

Is It Okay If Your Dogs Nose Changes Color?

Your dogs nose has gone from black to pink - or from pink to black. Whats that about?

Your Best Exercise Equipment: Your Dog

Were supposed to be engaging in at least 150 minutes (2 hours) of moderate to vigorous physical activity each week. And guess what? If you have a dog, youre much more likely to reach that target without even trying.

Dear Doctor: My dogs not losing weight fast enough

My dog was limping something awful, to the point that I thought he had torn a ligament and was going to need an operation. But when I took him to the vet, it turned out the problem was that he was very overweight and needed to lose some excess pounds.

Diseases You Can Catch from Your Dog – and Vice Versa

Diseases that can be transmitted between animals and people are termed zoonotic, and their danger is ever-present. By some estimates, six out of every 10 infectious diseases in people are caused by exposure to animals who themselves were exposed to parasites, fungi, bacteria, and viruses. And some parts of the world, including the northeastern United States, have been called areas of emerging zoonoses, that is, areas where more diseases are being transmitted between species, according to the journal Nature. But adhering to various simple sanitation measures can keep both you and your pet protected. Check out the zoonotic diseases below - and what you can do to make sure they dont spread among your family members.

The Cost of Having a Dog with Diabetes

It is always something of a financial challenge having a diabetic pet, says Orla Mahony, DVM, a veterinarian at Tuftss Foster Hospital for Small Animals.

Acupuncture for What Ails Him?

Acupuncture treatment, by many accounts, is proving valuable in treating dogs suffering from such ailments as musculoskeletal pain and nausea as well as various side effects of chemotherapy. Tufts veterinary school graduate Karen Fine, DVM, who practices in Massachusetts, describes one dog who was in so much pain from apparent disc disease in his neck that she told his owners if acupuncture didnt help, and they declined to take him for a workup by veterinary specialists, they should seriously consider putting him down to relieve him of his misery. But within five days of his first treatment - when Dr. Fine inserted a number of thin needles in his skin and left them there for 20 minutes - he was 60 percent better. Today, he is 90 percent improved. Acupuncture literally saved his life.

Which Imaging Technique Is Right for Your Dog?

Veterinarians often need to see inside a sick or injured dog to figure out whats wrong. But whats the best imaging technique to use? It depends on what the veterinarian suspects might be the problem. What follows is a guide to the various ways doctors view whats happening under the coat. As youll see, the cost of imaging is a good reason to have pet health insurance.

Dear Doctor: Lack of selenium in grain-free diets?

I know that selenium deficiency can be a rare cause of cardiomyopathy in people. Im wondering if too little selenium could also be contributing to the new cases of cardiomyopathy in dogs that have been linked to grain-free diets. I know there has been a lot of talk about a deficiency of the amino acid taurine, but maybe its too little of the mineral selenium thats causing the problem. Do you think that could be the case?