Monday, April 15, 2024

Why Are Dogs Considered Man’s Best Friend?


Ever heard the saying “dogs are a man’s best friend”? Dogs have earned this title time and time again over the years, and anyone who has ever had a pup in their family is likely familiar with why so many people believe in this. If you aren’t yet convinced, here are a few reasons why dogs are considered the closest and best companions for humans above all other domesticated animals.

Pups are natural protectors

Dogs have an intrinsic instinct to protect their pack and once they become a part of your family that instinct extends to you. As incredibly loyal creatures, their strong emotional bonds leave them deeply devoted to their human companions, making their instinct even stronger over time. This instinct makes dogs valuable guardians and there have been numerous examples of heroic dogs over the years making headlines for their protective instincts over their human families.

Dogs provide emotional support

When we are stressed or anxious, it’s well-known that dogs provide emotional support and are highly attentive to us and our emotional states. According to a study released by Duke University, dogs ranked closely to romantic partners and above best friends, children, parents, and siblings when their owners were asked who they turn to when feeling a variety of ways.

Dogs provide non-judgmental support in a unique way. They have also been found to reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol, lower perceived stress in individuals, improve mood, and improve energy up to 10 hours after interactions. Pups are such supportive animals that there are about 500,000 service dogs in the United States.

Service dogs can be trained to perform many important tasks to assist people with disabilities. Some examples from the ADA include providing stability for a person who has difficulty walking, picking up items for a person who uses a wheelchair, preventing a child with autism from wandering away, and alerting a person who has hearing loss when someone or something is approaching them from behind.

There are some great health benefits of owning a dog

There have been many well-documented studies that have reported clear health benefits of living with a dog. According to Time Magazine, here are some of the top advantages:

· Links to a longer life span

· Lower risk of cardiovascular disease

· Reduces the adverse health effect of living alone

· Can decrease allergies and asthma in children

· Increases opportunities for health-beneficial socialization

Your pooch will love you unconditionally

One of the greatest reasons why dogs are considered a man’s best friend is because they provide unconditional love. Pups are always there to offer a wet nose, wagging tail, and snuggle, no matter what, which can be comforting, especially when you need it most.

With over 62 million households in the US who own a dog, it’s clear that many people across the nation have already extended their happiness and brought a pup into their family. At Bregman Veterinary Group, we make it our mission to help you determine the best course of action for your pet so that they can live long, healthy lives. To schedule an appointment for your pup, click here to get started.

Friday, March 15, 2024

Signs Your Dog Has Seasonal Allergies


Springtime is synonymous with beautiful flowers, warmer days, more sunshine, and, for some, the return of dreaded seasonal allergies. While the telltale signs that allergy season is upon us are easy to spot and treat for humans, many don’t know that seasonal allergies can affect your pup, too. Just like us, they can experience uncomfortable symptoms as well.

Have you noticed your dog scratching its coat and licking its paws more? These may be signs that they are affected by these pesky allergies. Here are a few telltale signs to keep an eye out for.

Continuous scratching and itching

One of the most common signs that your dog might suffer from seasonal allergies is constant scratching and itching. Excessive scratching, biting at paws, and rubbing their face against surfaces could be a red flag that they are having an allergic reaction. Please pay attention to any scratching and itching that is out of the ordinary or bordering on excessive, as this is often the first and most obvious sign they are dealing with an allergy.

Red, inflamed, or infected skin

Similar to how some allergic reactions cause red and inflamed skin in humans, allergic reactions in dogs can appear similarly on their skin. Look for any and all changes to their coat and skin, including redness, hot patches, rashes, and infections.

Excessive paw licking and chewing

Allergies can affect your dog’s paws, which could lead to compulsive chewing, gnawing, and licking. If you notice your pup paying more attention to their paws than usual, make sure to check for redness, signs of irritation, and swelling.

Chronic ear infections

Chronic ear infections or red, waxy ears, common for dogs prone to ear problems in the first place, could be typical allergy symptoms you may notice. Pay attention to frequent head shakes, scratches at their ears, and clear signs of discomfort around the ear area, as they may be signs of seasonal allergies.

When you notice signs of an allergic reaction, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian

The AVMA said it best; “technicians are so important when it comes to client communication as well. That’s a huge aspect of being successful with allergic pets.” Understanding the potential signs that your furry friend is suffering from seasonal allergies is crucial for their well-being and an excellent way for you to get them the help they need when they need it. To best care for your pet who is suffering from seasonal allergies or any allergic reaction in general, you’ll want to consult your veterinarian, who can help you determine the best treatment plan.

At Bregman Veterinary Group, we make it our mission to help you determine the best course of action for your pet so that they can live long, healthy lives. By being proactive, you can ensure your dog enjoys each season without the discomfort of allergies. To schedule an appointment for your pup, click here to get started.

Thursday, February 1, 2024

Health Benefits of Adopting a Dog


Ever heard the saying “dogs are a man’s best friend”? If you’ve welcomed a dog into your family, you know that there is no truer phrase, and companionship is one of the greatest joys you can experience. As your pup integrates into your day-to-day life, you’ll quickly notice the newfound benefits to your overall health and well-being. From helping you become more active and social to easing stress and loneliness, here are some of the top advantages to adopting a dog.

Dogs are great at helping to ease stress in your life

Let’s face it, life can be extremely stressful at times. One of the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic is that society gained a heightened awareness of the stress and anxiety people often feel in their everyday lives. Interacting with your pup has been shown to lower stress hormones and reduce anxiety, which can be an incredible benefit of adopting a dog.

Pups need exercise, encouraging you to get active too

Dogs are natural exercise companions and require exercise, encouraging you to get more active. From regular walks and playtime to a visit to the dog park, you’ll notice a boost in your physical activity levels just from simply giving your new pup the attention and care they need. Since a dog needs daily exercise, you’ll notice more consistency in your own fitness routine and the increased physical activity is a great benefit of being a dog owner.

Four-legged friends can lead to more human friends

Getting out there with your new pup can also encourage you to make new human friends, too. This was confirmed through a study that proved domestic dogs are facilitators of social interaction. From other pet owners at the dog park to neighbors you encounter on your walks around the block, your four-legged best friend can help you befriend other pet parents and curb isolation and loneliness.

Dogs can improve your self-esteem

Responsible dog owners create safe, consistent, and caring environments for their pups. By selecting a good veterinarian, scheduling regular visits for your dog and following recommended nutritional advice (and ensuring your dog gets a good walk every day), you will probably find that your self-confidence in your ability to care for your wonderful pet, will grow with each passing day.

From these reasons and beyond, it’s clear that adopting a dog can enhance your life as much as you can enhance theirs. From improved mental health and social connection to reduced anxiety and increased physical activity, the positive effects of canine companionship are uncontested and make adopting a pup a great decision.

If you are considering adopting a pet and are curious about the best way to provide support and prepare for this new best friend, check out this AVMA guide to pet ownership. After you adopt your dog, it’s important to schedule their veterinary appointment and our team is here to help. At Bregman Veterinary Group we make it our mission to help you determine the best course of action for your pet from the very beginning so that they can live long, healthy lives. To schedule an appointment for your new pup, click here to get started.

Tuesday, January 2, 2024

How to Prep Your Home for a New Puppy


Bringing home your new furry friend is an exciting adventure for you and the whole family. As you prepare for many years of happy moments and snuggles, it’s also important to prepare your home for a smooth transition for everyone. From puppy-proofing your space and designating a haven for your new pup to getting the right supplies and preparing a routine, here are some of the best ways to prep your home for a new puppy.

Puppy-proof your home

Puppies are famous for getting themselves into trouble very fast because of their curious nature and boundless energy. The best way to protect your dog and your home from harm is by puppy-proofing before bringing them home. This step is so important that the American Kennel Club created a checklist that is helpful to follow. Many of these tips mirror the same you would follow for baby proofing and some of the most popular include:

Unplug electrical cords and move them out of easy reach

  • Keep cleaning supplies in high cabinets or secured behind doors with childproof latches
  • Move poisonous houseplants
  • Keep toilet lids closed
  • Put away small items that are choking hazards
  • Create a safe haven for your furry best friend

While bringing a new pup to your home is an exciting time for you, it can be a very scary and vulnerable time for them as their whole world just changed. It’s a great idea to create a safe space your pup can call their very own. Whether it’s a safe corner with a comfortable bed or an appropriately sized crate with cozy blankets, these retreats quickly become their safe space to go to when they need a nap or a break from all the activity.

Prepare a routine that will meet everyone’s needs

Dogs take a lot of care, and puppies need even more because they are so young and vulnerable. It’s important that you consider your schedule and make sure you can handle the time commitment and responsibilities that come along with a new pup before bringing them home and then prepare to establish a routine from day one that will meet everyone’s needs. Setting a consistent schedule for feeding, playtime, training, and potty breaks is a great way to help your puppy feel secure in their new space and gives everyone a predictable routine to follow.

Stock your home with the right supplies

From high-quality puppy food and training treats to water bowls, a comfy bed, and the right sized collar and leash, having essential supplies ready will make the initial days with your new furry friend more comfortable for all. Stock your puppy pantry ahead of time so you have the supplies you need when you need them.

Don’t forget to visit your veterinarian

Visiting the veterinarian should be one of the first things on your to-do list with your new puppy after you bring them home. Scheduling a health checkup and the appropriate vaccinations will set your pup up for success and discuss preventative care early on so you can give your new pet the best care possible.

If you are adopting a new puppy and need to schedule a veterinary appointment, our team at Bregman Veterinary Group is here to help. At Bregman Veterinary Group we make it our mission to help you determine the best course of action for your pet from the very beginning so that they can live long, healthy lives. To schedule an appointment for your new pup, click here to get started.

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Top 3 Tips for Adopting the Right Cat for Your Family


The holiday season is one of the most popular times to adopt a pet, and adopting a cat is an enriching experience. With so many different breeds and considerations, including age, temperament, health, and family dynamics, you must take the time to ensure you are adopting a cat that is right for your family.

The AVMA states that the primary reason cats are given up to animal shelters is unfulfilled expectations, so an informed decision will set you up for success and be better for the cat and your family in the long run. Keep reading for some top tips to pick the ideal feline to bring home.

Think about your lifestyle and how a cat will fit in.

While it is true that many cats are independent creatures, it’s still important to consider your lifestyle and how the cat you bring home will fit in. These pets can adapt to most home situations but need time devoted to their care and attention. Consider the type of home you have. If you are renting, are you allowed to have a cat? If you own, is there enough space for everyone to coexist, and would you be okay with normal cat behaviors like predatory play, scratching, and exploration?

Another consideration of your lifestyle is how long you are away from the house. If you are frequently out of the house, can someone else provide care and attention to your cat? Would this schedule be challenging to manage? Finally, do you have other pets in the house already? If so, are they friendly, and will they get along with your new cat (will the new cat do well with other pets)?

Decide whether you can afford to care for a cat.

Purchase prices of cats can vary significantly like any other pet and often depend on the type of breed and age. If you are adopting, the fees might be minimal, but you must still cover the cost of caring for the cat for the remainder of their life. Other expenses likely arise include grooming, boarding, licensing, sterilization, food, toys, and more.

Consider what personality would work best for you.

Some cats are solitary, while others crave attention, pets, and cuddles. Do your research on the breed you are considering and spend time with the cat before bringing them home so you can get a feel for whether your personalities fit well together.

While the holidays are a great time to adopt a pet, you must avoid acquiring animals impulsively. The AVMA suggests that you take time, involve your family, and carefully consider how the cat would integrate into your life, so if you are interested in adopting a cat this winter, you’ll want to give yourself ample time to make a great decision.

If you have any questions or need help from us at the Bregman Veterinary Group, call us at (863) 588-4200 or to schedule an appointment for your new cat, click here to get started. We hope you have a happy and safe holiday season!

Saturday, November 25, 2023

Holiday Foods That Are Actually Safe for Your Dog


The holiday season is upon us and each year the big meals shared with family are a highlight of the season. From honey baked hams and turkey with gravy to stuffing, yams, and apple pie, the classics make a happy return to the dinner table in November and December and food comas are found in almost every house.

While family gatherings with amazing meals are great opportunities to unwind and indulge this holiday season for you, it’s important that no matter how much your dog wants to join, they don’t also get a heaping plate of the good stuff. The best way to ensure that your pup is safe this holiday season is to know what holiday foods to avoid, and which ones are safe in the event that you want to share a scrap or two out of holiday spirit. The more you know about what is safe for your dog to eat, the better equipped you can be to share a few small things this holiday season.

Plain potatoes or sweet potatoes

Mashed potatoes with gravy are a holiday table staple for families, and potatoes are some of the only people foods dogs can eat. The key is that these must be plain and there can be no skin or seasoning when fed to your dog. Since pups can’t have salt, pepper, garlic, milk, butter, and other ingredients that are typically added into mashed potatoes, a small scoop before adding any flavors in is okay. The same rule applies to sweet potatoes – keep them plain and avoid the skin for the safest treat for your dog.


Pumpkin is a tasty, healthy treat for dogs and many love the flavor. When feeding your dog canned pumpkin, it’s important that you read the label carefully to ensure that the only ingredient is pumpkin and there are no hidden flavors like pumpkin pie mix, sugar, and spices.


Plain carrots are a healthy and tasty treat that many dogs love. While it may be easier to give your pup a fresh raw carrot, you can also try given them a cooked carrot as long as there is no seasoning.

White meat

Many people wonder if dogs can eat turkey at Thanksgiving and the answer is yes, they can, as long as it has not been prepared with any seasoning. It’s also important to avoid bones and skip feeding the skin since the outer layer of poultry is likely to have been prepared with butter, spices, or other fatty ingredients. If you cook a chicken instead, the same rules apply.

While all of these foods are technically safe for your pup to eat, it’s important that you don’t overdo it and always err on the side of less is more. Giving a few small safe and healthy snacks (void of seasoning) to your pup while you’re cooking and/or eating your holiday meal can be a treat for you both, but a stomachache is never fun.

Holiday safety tips

Looking for a great resource this year to help keep your pet healthy and safe this winter? Check out the AVMA’s winter holiday pet safety guide that covers everything from food and decorations to hosting parties and visitors and tips for handling holiday travel.

If you have any questions or need any help from us here at the Bregman Veterinary Group , give us a call at (863)588-4200 or to schedule an appointment for your pup, click here to get started. We hope you have a happy and safe holiday season!

Wednesday, October 4, 2023

5 Important Skills to Train Your New Puppy


Adding a new puppy to your family is always exciting for everyone at home! While the transition can be a bit tricky especially since your everyday routine (and theirs) is now different, if you are prepped and ready from day one to train your pup, you will fall into a comfortable routine in no time. Since the transition can be overwhelming, even to the friendliest pets, approaching your training routine with consistency and patience from day one is a great way to help set them and you up for success. Here are some of the most important skills needed to train your new puppy.

Recognize their name


It may seem simple and like a no-brainer, but training your puppy to respond to and recognize their own name is a very important skill that you should practice early on. Once your pup starts to know that you are calling for them, you can have better control over all other commands like “stop”, “sit”, “stay”, etc. The best way to help them recognize their name is to be repetitive and say it with a happy tone. Practice from a variety of distances and say it when they are looking away from you as well as when they are looking at you to help it become familiar quickly.

Come when called


Not only is it helpful for you to have your pup come when called, it’s also a very important safety skill for them to respond when called to come to their owner. Regardless of if you’re ready to leave the park and head home or if there is a true emergency, this can be an incredibly valuable skill for everyone and one you should teach early on.

Walk on a leash

Allowing you to walk them on a leash is a gamechanger for both you and your new puppy. The AKC suggests that whatever cue you choose from “heel” or “let’s go” to “forward” is up to you, but it’s important to be consistent and always use the same word. For a step-by-step guide on how to teach your pup loose-leash walking, click here.

Love their crate

Puppies nap all the time, and having a safe space to nap and go back to when they need a break is important. One great way to help them understand that their crate is the perfect resting spot is to make the space a cozy and safe one, so they are encouraged to approach and spend time there.

Enjoy socializing

One tip from the AVMA for new puppy owners is to create a socialization plan specifically for your dog to prepare him or her for life in your household. Plan exposures to the animals, individuals, environments, activities, and objects that will be part of his or her new life. Provide regular positive and diverse experiences to encourage your dog or cat to enjoy new experiences without becoming fearful or aggressive.

If you are adopting a new puppy and need to schedule a veterinary appointment, our team at Bregman Veterinary Group is here to help. At Bregman Veterinary Group we make it our mission to help you determine the best course of action for your pet from the very beginning so that they can live long, healthy lives. To schedule an appointment for your new pup, click here to get started.