Disaster Plans for Your Pet

The best way to protect your household from the effects of a disaster is to have a disaster plan. If you are a pet owner, that plan must include your pets. Being prepared can save their lives.

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If a natural disaster strikes, what will happen to your pet? Be prepared: make a plan and prepare a disaster kit for your pet.

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Purchasing Pet Drugs Online: Buyer Beware

Discount pet drugs—no prescription required” may appeal to pet owners surfing the Web, but FDA experts say it can be risky to buy drugs online from sites that tout this message and others like it.

Some of the Internet sites that sell pet drugs represent legitimate, reputable pharmacies, says Martine Hartogensis, D.V.M., deputy director of the Office of Surveillance and Compliance in FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM). But others are fronts for unscrupulous businesses operating against the law.

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Raw Protein Diet Position Statement

The following position statement has been released form the American Animal Hospital Association for the protection of pets and their owners.

Past proponents of raw food diets believed that this was the healthiest food choice for pets. It was also assumed that feeding such a diet would cause no harm to other animals or to humans. There have subsequently been multiple studies showing both these premises to be false. Based on overwhelming scientific evidence, AAHA does not advocate or endorse feeding pets any raw or dehydrated nonsterilized foods, including treats that are of animal origin.

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The Dog Flu . . . How worried should I be?
By Ashley Atkin, DVM

Many of you have heard of the Canine Influenza outbreak in the Chicago area and have been wondering what you should do to protect your furry, four-legged family member. Hopefully, you find the following information and web links helpful.

Canine Influenza – what is it?

Canine Influenza (aka Dog Flu) is a highly contagious respiratory infection of dogs caused by an influenza A virus. Two strains of this virus have been identified in the United States. In the 2005 outbreak, the H3N8 strain was identified (and a vaccine was developed). Most recently, the outbreak in Chicago was caused by a different strain, H3N2.

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Defining “Quality of Life”
By Moira Anderson Allen, M.Ed.

Whenever one considers the painful choice of euthanasia, one is always advised to take the pet’s “quality of life” into account. But what is “quality of life”? How can you determine whether a pet is still experiencing a good quality of life – or whether his/her level of suffering is no longer acceptable?

That decision is individual to every pet, and every owner. Following, however, are some factors to consider when attempting to assess a pet’s quality of life:

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Euthanasia: The Most Painful Decision
By Moira Anderson Allen, M.Ed.

Many think of bereavement as beginning after loss. For many, however, grief can begin much earlier. Often, it begins the day you realize that your pet is approaching the end of his life – even though the final loss of that pet may still be many months distant.

This stage of grief is especially difficult, because it is without closure. You can’t make an effort to “get over it” or “feel better,” because the loss itself has not occurred. Thus, no matter how badly you feel, you know that things are just going to get worse. It can be difficult to find comfort during this stage, for even people who understand the pain of bereavement may wonder why you are grieving before your cat or dog has actually died.

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