Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Our Recipe for Homemade Dog Biscuits


Baking your own dog biscuits can be a fun way to reward your pet for good behavior… And aside from being a fun activity, they are also healthier for your dog than the store-versions. See below for the recipe for homemade dog biscuits (Recipe credit to Cesar Milan).

*Note: buy all organic ingredients for an even cleaner alternative to store-bought treats!
Ingredients
  • 2 ½ cups whole wheat flour (substitute regular flour or oats if your dog is sensitive to wheat)
  • 1 tsp. salt (or less)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. Beef or chicken Bouillon granules (can substitute beef or chicken broth/stock)
  • ½ cup hot water
  • Optional: Add bacon or chicken broth, eggs, oats, liver powder, wheat germ, shredded cheese, bacon bits, to (your dog's) taste

Directions

1.    Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2.    Dissolve bouillon in hot water

3.    Add remaining ingredients

4.    Knead dough until it forms a ball (approximately 3 minutes)

5.    Roll dough until ½ inch thick

6.    Cut into slices or bone shapes (you can purchase a bone shaped cookie cutter to make shapes with)

7.    Place dough pieces on lightly greased cookie sheet

8.    Cook for 30 minutes


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Taking Care of Your New Kitten





It’s well into kitten season, and many people are bringing home a new kitten to become part of their family. Here are some important tips for taking care of your new addition.

1.     Find a safe space. Your new kitten should stay in only one room or an enclosure, such as a cage or pen, so that it can gradually adjust to its new surroundings. Try to find a place without any long curtains, cloth furniture, breakable items, or easily-opened cupboards. In many ways, a new kitten is like a crawling baby, so you may want to install child-proof latches in your home, particularly since kittens love to get into small spaces. Check for any potential dangers including fireplaces, poisonous substances, and plants to make your kitten as safe as possible. And always keep any windows, gates, and doors securely fastened to make sure your kitten stays secure and where you want it to be!
2.     Introduce a litter box. Having your kitten in one room is an important part of litter box training. Place a litter tray with low sides in a corner of the room away from the food and water bowls. It’s a good idea to place a mat or other covering underneath the litter box to make clean-up easier. After your kitten gets used to using the litter box, you’ll be able to move to a container with higher sides to keep litter from spilling out, but at first you want to make the litter box as accessible as possible.
3.     Create a warm haven. It’s a good idea to provide a cardboard box with soft bedding, a cat basket, or a semi-enclosed cat bed so that your cat has a safe place to hide until it’s feeling more confident. You’ll want to make sure that this sleeping space is away from any drafts so your new kitten doesn’t get chilled.
4.     Provide a scratching area. Some cats prefer an upright scratching post while others are drawn to a scratching pad. You may want to offer both at first so that you immediately train your kitten to only scratch on an appropriate surface. This will go a long way towards protecting your furniture and carpets in the long run.
5.     Play with your kitten. While kittens need a lot of sleep, in between naps they will have bursts of playful energy. Spending time playing with them using specific, safe toys that they will become familiar with is another way to channel their innate instincts into activities that don’t interfere with your lifestyle or damage your belongings. And playing with them is also a great way to bond!
6.     Feed your kitten carefully. When you first bring a kitten home, it’s a good idea to feed it the same food as it has already been eating, as a sudden change in diet may cause stomach upset and/or diarrhea. If you want to change their food, do so gradually by mixing it with the food it is used to and gradually increasing the amount of the new food. Kittens should be fed small amounts 3-4 times a day until they are at least six months old, and it’s a good idea to buy a high-quality, name-brand kitten food that has been specially formulated for their nutritional needs.

If you have any questions or concerns about caring for your new kitten, don’t hesitate to contact the veterinary staff at BregmanVeterinary Group. Soon after you welcome your new kitten, you should schedule its first vet appointment, and its first vaccinations should be given at 8-10 weeks of age. We look forward to meeting your new family addition!


Thursday, August 3, 2017

Bringing the dog along: Beach Day Edition



The sun is shining, the van is packed and the kids won’t stop kicking and screaming the drivers seat. They say a dog is man’s best friend, but you’re unsure if you can handle the pooch on top of the already hectic environment. Not to fret, bringing the dog along for a beach day doesn’t have to be a hassle – you’ve surely got enough on your plate. Just follow these tips and everyone, dog included, will be taking in some Oceanside rays.

Find a Dog Friendly Beach

It’s important to note that not all beaches allow pets. So, when you have your destination in mind, double check by calling or going online to make sure your little drooling companion is legally able to visit.

Fresh Water, and Plenty of It

Just because Old Yeller spent an hour frolicking in the ocean doesn’t mean he’s hydrated. Make sure you bring along a dish and some fresh water to provide hydration. Salt water, and

Shady Naps

 We all have that one Irish friend who can’t tan. Sure, it’s entertaining to watch as the sun turns him into a lobster by 2 pm, but you don’t want that for your dog. Make sure you have an umbrella or small tent-type shader to provide your mutt shelter from the sun.

Choppy Waves are No Good

Large waves or areas with a lot of boats and jet skis can frighten dogs, so it’s best to stay away. Not to mention, if your dog isn’t the greatest swimmer, you might want to keep them away from heavy wave action.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Facts About Fleas and Ticks



There is no bigger pain on the planet than fleas and ticks – and that’s coming from someone who encounters bad drivers every morning. But, as a fellow pet owner, fleas and ticks take the cake.

What Are Fleas and Ticks?
Fleas are small insects that latch onto your pet. They can find a home on your pet during a walk outside, or even in your home – fleas attach themselves to socks and shoes. Yikes!

When fleas cozy up in your pet’s fur, they feed on blood. They’re mini vampires in this sense. After a while, they’ll look to mate – the females lay eggs, which can fall off your pet and into your home and yard.

Ticks, much like fleas, attach themselves to the pet’s body as well. They’re bloodsuckers as too, capable of transmitting diseases when they bite. The problem, though, is that ticks are subtler about they’re invasion – releasing an anesthetic so the victim doesn’t feel a thing.


Detecting Fleas and Ticks
Fleas tend to leave little dark brown flecks, which can be found combing through your pet’s skin. This coupled with constant scratching is a sure fire sign your pet has a case of the itchy-crawly’s.

When looking for ticks, run your hand along your pet’s body. If you feel a tiny lump or bump, stop and look at it. If the bump is red, almost like a blood blubble, it’s a tick.

Flea and Tick Prevention
While it’s true that fleas and ticks are more prevalent in the summer months, thriving in temperatures between 65 and 80 degrees, they can linger indoors during the winter months. This is why it’s good to find a year-round preventative product for your pets. But remember, these products are different for cats and dogs (some dog treatments are toxic to cats, and vice-versa). Visit your veterinarian for more details.


Yes, Your Dog CAN Get a Sunburn!



Summer’s officially here. That means sunny days, lemonade and trips to the ballpark. For your dog, it may also mean getting sunburnt. That’s right, animals can get sunburns as well.

Does My Dog Need Sunscreen?

If your dog is going to be outdoors for a prolonged period of time, yes, he or she needs sunscreen. Dogs with light skin and white fur/hair are the most susceptible to sunburn. According to Richard Goldstein, chief medical officer of the Animal Medical Center in New York City, “A dog’s skin can be damaged by the sun just like our own skin, so they require the same protection against the development of sunburn and skin cancer.”

Sun exposure is at its highest during early morning (10 am) to late-afternoon (4 pm). If your dog finds themselves outside for a significant duration of time during this period, note that you should reapply sunscreen to the sensitive areas – nose, around the lips, tips of the ears, the groin and the belly.

What Kind of Sunscreen Should I Use?
The recommended sunscreen for dogs is sunscreen that is designated for dog use. Such sunscreens don’t pose a health risk to your dog. However, if dog sunscreen isn’t available, a broad-spectrum sunscreen for babies and children (SPF 15 or higher) can be used. Just note, if going the broad-spectrum route, to check the label for the following two ingredients: zinc oxide and para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA).  Both of these are toxic for dogs. You must use a broad-spectrum sunblock that does not contain these ingredients.






Wednesday, June 28, 2017

How to Manage Pet Allergies as the Seasons Change


For Those Of Us who Suffer From Pet Allergies, There’s Hope

As the seasons change, and the warm weather approaches, your pets will shed until the cows come home. Pet dander will litter your home and clothes, but that doesn’t mean you have to suffer through pet allergies. Just look at these quick tips to help survive allergy season.

You Shall Not Pass!
For starters, make your bedroom a pet-free zone. Keep dander away from where you get your beauty rest!
Buy a HEPA Filter
HEPA (high-efficiency particulate arresting) filters possess fine sieves and catch small allergens, removing unwanted particles and allergens from the air.
Break out the Vacuum and Duster
Allergens build up quick, especially in the spring/summer months. Vacuuming frequently, dusting tables, shelves and doorways is a surefire way to reduce your suffering.
Over-The-Counter
If you’re finding that, despite your best efforts, nothing seems to be working, perhaps medication or an allergy shot is the best bet. Over-the-counter allergy medications, such as antihistamines, relieve mild allergy symptoms: nasal congestion and itchy eyes. Of course, always consult your primary care physician before considering over-the-counter medications.

Vaccinate Me, Doc
Allergy shots, or allergy vaccines, will help your body develop protective antibodies so you won’t have an allergic reaction when exposed to allergens. The only issue? There’s a good deal of time needed before you see dramatic results. It can take upwards of 5 years’ worth of injections before you’re completely allergy-free.



Monday, June 12, 2017

Cats Being Cats


Domesticated or Wild, Cats Have A Lot in Common

Have you ever looked at your fuzzy lil’ kitten and thought “if she was slightly larger, I bet she’d be Queen of the Jungle?” You have!? Well, so have I. Let’s be friends.

But first, lets find out how domesticated and wild cats are similar.

10. Purring
Lions and Tigers won’t cuddle up and purr like Miss Purrfect, you’re adorable Maine Coon with a penchant for climbing the Christmas tree, but a puma would. That’s right, Puma’s are known for more than just their speed.

9. Scent Marking
When your cat rubs up against you and wiggles his or her tail, they aren’t always looking for attention. It’s a sign of scent marking. You may pay the rent, but it’s Mittens’, the 10-year-old Siamese, territory now.

8. Sharpening Their Claws
It’s just another instance of marking their territory. While the large cats of the wilderness aren’t directly responsible for your need to replace yet another recliner, know they’ve influenced it a bit.

7. Go To Bed, Miss Purrfect
Wild cats like to hunt at night – it gives them an advantage. Domesticated cats? They like to run in circles upstairs and keep you awake.

6.  Hunting
Domesticated cats bring you tiny bird. Jaguars, on the other hand, well, don’t ever stray from a guided safari tour.

5. Number of Toes
All cats, domesticated and wild, have four toes on their hind feet and five toes on their front feet.

4. Put Your Claws Away
Cheetah’s are the only type of cat that doesn’t have retractable claws.

3. Meats, Meats, Meats
All cats are carnivores. So while you’re cutting meat out of your diet, don’t do the same for loveable Miss Purrfect.

2. Chromosomes
Within the cell of each cat, sans the Geoffreys Cat and the Ocelot, there are 38 chromosomes.

1.Speed Demon
Miss Purfect has a majestic stride as she chases after an unsuspecting spider, and her speed and agility are influenced by her elders of the wild.