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Posts Tagged ‘pets’

When your pet ingests a toxin, time can be of the essence. Immediately contacting the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center 24-hour hotline (1-888-426-4435) will give you and your veterinarianpetsan potentially life-saving information regarding the treatment of your loved one.

 

 

To protect your pet, we recommend that you follow these simple guidelines:

  • Always follow instructions on the label of prescription medications.
  • Never give your pet any of your prescription or over-the-counter                            medications unless explicitly instructed to do so by a veterinarian.
  • Keep common household cleaning products safely stored away from pet access.
  • Prevent access to the garbage by keeping a tight lid on all cans or store out of reach of your pets.
  • Only have your home treated with chemicals that are nontoxic to pets.
  • Seek emergency care if your pet has ingested a toxin.

During the holidays, there are other things that should be of special concern to our pets, Here are some of the things that might be “eye-catching” to your pet during the holiday season?

  • Alcohol (including eggnog & punch)Bones (chicken & turkey)
  • Car enginesoutdoor cats seek warmth
  • Christmas treescats climb and like ornaments & tinsel, strands of lights,      stagnant or fertilized tree water, pine needles
  • Chocolate
  • Confetti
  • Electrical cords & wires
  • Grapes & raisins
  • Lighted candles
  • Outdoor hazardsantifreeze, frostbite, frozen water bowl (outdoors), rock salt, sub-zero temperatures
  • PlantsChristmas cactus, lilies, holly
  • Ribbons, bows & giftwrap
  • Rich foods
  • Sugar-free desserts/gum (with Xylitol)
  • Trash cans with discarded/moldy foods

Remember to always work in partnership with your family veterinarian.

Animals are such agreeable friends – they ask no questions; they pass no criticisms.  –George Eliot

 Adapted by:  Janet Wasko Myers, Program Assistant, Horticulture, Ohio State University Extension, Clark County, myers.31@osu.edu

Reviewed by:  Kathy Green, Extension Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences, Ohio State University Extension, Clark County, green.1405@osu.edu

Sources:

Information is provided by The Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center.  Contact The Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center at:  http://vet.osu.edu/vmc/  (614) 292-3551, 24/7 Operating Center.

The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine at:  http://vet.osu.edu

Protect your Pet from Household Hazards at:  http://vet.osu.edu/vmc/companion/owner-education/protect-your-pet-household-hazards

General Safety info pdf and HolidaySafetyHazards.pdf at the bottom of the page at:  http://vet.osu.edu/vmc/companion/owner-education/protect-your-pet-household-hazards

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TomPuppy2

My brother-in-law and sister had to put their beloved dog to sleep a few months ago. Needless to say, this was a sad time for them. Tom (my brother-in-law) recently shared an observation about his weight during this time. When . they had to put their dog, Chippy to sleep, his average weight was 199. He noticed a weight gain of 9-10 pounds after this time. Since they brought home a new puppy, Chummy, his weight has dropped by 5 pounds!

What does this have to do with your health? According to the American Heart Association, owning a pet – a dog, in particular, can be good for your heart health.  This article supports the findings that my brother-in-law recently shared with me. The CDC also reports that having a pet can decrease your blood pressure, cholesterol and triglycerides levels and decrease your feelings of loneliness.

These factors may contribute to his recent weight loss:

  • Taking a walk at least twice a day with Chummy
  • Enjoying the social interaction with the new puppy
  • Spending time with the puppy which makes it easier to avoid snacking

If you can’t have or don’t want a pet, what can you do to improve your heart health? Go back to the basics:

Enjoy physical activity most days of the week for at least 30 minutes. It is fine to break up the 30 minutes into three 10-minute sessions. Adults should aim for 150 minutes per week.

Eat a diet rich in vegetables and fruits. Enjoy a wide variety of nutrient rich veggies & fruits. Be creative with the way you add them to your day. Start the day with a fruit or veggie for breakfast (think smoothie, veggies added to eggs, or a piece of fresh fruit).

Need more help? Visit MyPlate’s SuperTracker to customize your food and activity plan. It is free and easy and will help you on your wellness journey.

While you are enjoying the health benefits from you new (or old) pet, don’t forget basic cleanliness habits to keep you and your family from becoming ill. One reminder from CDC is to wash your hands after handling your pet, pet food or treats or if you pick up their stools.  Not sure how to wash your hands? Here are the basics on handwashing from CDC:

  • Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
  • Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Be sure to lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
  • Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Do you need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
  • Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
  • Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them

Are these good reasons to get a pet? Yes! Remember that if you are ready for a new furry family member, it just might help your health!

Sources:

http://heartinsight.heart.org/Fall-2017/Is-Owning-a-Pet-Good-for-You/

https://www.cdc.gov/healthypets/health-benefits/

https://www.cdc.gov/healthypets/pets/dogs.html

https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/when-how-handwashing.html

https://www.cdc.gov/healthypets/resources/pet-food-tips_8x11_508.pdf

https://www.supertracker.usda.gov/myplan.aspx

Writer: Michelle Treber, OSU Extension, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator, Pickaway County, Heart of Ohio EERA, treber.1@osu.edu

Reviewer: Marilyn Rabe, OSU Extension, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator, Franklin County, Heart of Ohio EERA, rabe.9@osu.edu

 

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Chumlee and Big Hoss

Chumlee and Big Hoss

Pet ownership is a responsibility, and with this responsibility comes numerous health benefits including exercise, companionship, and unconditional love.

Nearly two years ago, while cleaning the gutters on our garage, my husband and I heard a “yelp” coming from under the weeping cherry tree at the end of the front deck.  A few minutes later, we heard another “yelp”, then much to our surprise; an adorably cute puppy (brown one pictured in the basket above) came running towards us.  After a few minutes of holding the puppy, it was back to work.  However, the puppy didn’t leave our sights.  Moments later, another “yelp”, another cute, adorable puppy had arrived from under the cherry tree (white one pictured in the basket above).  Needless to say, Chumlee (brown) and Big Hoss (white) have become vital members of our family providing companionship and unconditional love.

Lots of people have pets.  In the U.S., 69.1 million homes have at least one pet.  Most common are dogs (43.5 million) and cats (37.7 million).

While most pet owners are clear about the immediate joys that come with sharing their lives with animals, many remain unaware of the physical and mental health benefits that can also accompany the pleasure of playing with or snuggling up to a furry friend. It’s only recently that studies have begun to scientifically explore the benefits of the human-animal bond.  They are noticing the companionship of the animals affects us on four primary levels – physical, social, emotional and cognitive. These affects can lead to a number of health and life benefits.  The American Heart Association has linked the ownership of pets, especially dogs, with a reduced risk for heart disease and greater longevity.

A study at Cambridge University found that pet owners have fewer ailments and their overall well-being was improved.  A pet can have positive effects on its owner (s). Here are a few of the potential benefits.

  • Lower blood pressure and reduce stress.
  • Elevate mood and reduce loneliness, isolation and depression.
  • Lead to more social contacts and open the door to making new friends.
  • Create movement and increase exercise.
  • Fewer visits to the doctor and take fewer amounts of medications.
  • Offer unconditional love and daily doses of affection.
  • Offer a sense of security.
  • Help to deal with the loss of a spouse and other loved ones.
  • Provide an outward focus and decrease the emphasis on  personal problems.

Once you have known the experience of unconditional love and the many health benefits involved with caring for a pet, you realize the valuable role they play in your life and gladly take on the additional level of responsibility.

References:

http://www.helpguide.org/life/pets.htm

https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/Statistics/Pages/Market-research-statistics-US-pet-ownership.aspx

http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/horoscopes/companion-health-benefits-owning-pet-article-1.1598729

http://newsroom.heart.org/news/pets-may-help-reduce-your-risk-of-heart-disease

Written by:  Cindy Shuster, CFLE, Extension Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences, OSU Extension, Perry County, Buckeye Hills EERA

Reviewed by:  Liz Smith, R.D., L.D., Program Specialist, SNAP-Ed, OSU Extension, North East Region

Reviewed by:  Kim Barnhart, Office Associate, OSU Extension, Perry County, Buckeye Hills EERA

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Indoor Allergies

As fall arrives, many of us are thankful that our summer time allergies are going away. We can say good-bye to the sneezing, watery eyes, runny nose, etc. for a few months. There are others though who may find that their allergy symptoms are not relieved.sneeze
Current research has shown that people spend almost 90% of their time indoors. Many people have allergic reactions to indoor triggers with dust, mold, and animals being the top three.
• Dust. Allergic reactions to dust are actually caused by our reaction to dust mites. Their droppings and remains become airborne and cause allergy symptoms in people who are sensitive to them.
• Mold. Molds thrive in damp, humid areas such as basements and bathrooms. Once the mold spores begin to bloom and grow and get into the air, they can trigger allergic reactions.
• Pets. Many people believe that they are allergic to the pet’s hair when it is actually it is a substance in the dead skin flakes (dander) that causes the allergic reaction

It is not realistic to think that we can totally eliminate these indoor triggers but there are actions we can take to control the amounts that are present in our homes. Here are a few suggestions:
• Dust. The best way to deal with dust allergies is to simply reduce exposure to dust. If you have dust allergies, you will want to wear a mask when you are cleaning or have someone else do the cleaning for you! A couple of easy ways to reduce dust in your home: wash bedding in hot water once a week, use plastic dust-proof covers on your mattress, box springs, and pillows. If you have carpeting in your home, vacuum once or twice a week and vacuum upholstered furniture often. Remove stuffed animals and drapes. Wash throw rugs in hot water. When it is time to replace flooring – look at cork, hardwood, bamboo, or tile which tend to be more allergy friendly.
• Mold. The most efficient preventative for mold growth is to control moisture. Watch out for wet spots and condensation. Fix leaky plumbing as soon as it is discovered. Increase ventilation and air circulation in your home. Use a dehumidifier if necessary. Indoor humidity should be below 60%. There are inexpensive humidity detectors that you can purchase and use year round to keep an eye on the humidity levels in your home.
• Pets. Some might say that the only way to control this trigger is to remove the pet from the home. However, more realistic steps to take include not allowing the pet in the bedroom. Bedding can become a trap for allergens that are difficult to dislodge. Use a HEPA air filter in your home at all times. Give your pet a weekly bath to reduce the allergen count. While dander and saliva are the source of cat and dog allergens, urine is the source of allergens from rabbits, hamsters, mice and guinea pigs – so ask a non-allergic family member to clean the animal’s cage.A Tabby Cat with Green Eyes
If these suggestions do not help control your allergies, you may choose to visit an allergist. An allergist can help discover what indoor allergens are causing your symptoms and educate you to make changes to avoid them. The right care can help you manage your allergies and feel better year round.

Author: Marilyn Rabe, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator, Ohio State University Extension Franklin County
Reviewed by Lisa Barlage, Extension Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences, Ohio State University Extension, Ross & Vinton Counties

Sources:
Indoor Air Quality: Dust and Molds http://ohioline.osu.edu/cd-fact/pdf/0191.pdf
Tips to control Pet Allergies http://www.health.harvard.edu/press_releases/tips-to-control-pet-allergies
Winter Allergies http://www.webmd.com/allergies/winter-allergies
Indoor Allergens: Tips to Remember http://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/library/at-a-glance/indoor-allergens.aspx

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