August 19, 2013

Natural Sunscreen for Dogs and Cats

Filed under: Cat Skin,Dog Skin Problems,Pet Health,Pet Safety Tips — Tags: , — Dr. Loridawn Gordon @ 9:27 pm

Dog with hat and glasses in the garden

No one likes a sunburn and that includes your pets. Solar dermatitis, aka: Sunburn, can affect all pets, but is more common in those who are light in color. Side effects of sunburn include mild redness and hair loss, while too much sun exposure may also lead to disease, like skin cancer.

If your pet experiences a sun burn I recommend using Vetisse Rashaid. Rashaid can help soothe the sunburn on your pet’s skin. Another option for a rash aid is to use Calendula topically.

Many people opt to buy sunscreen for their dogs and cats. Just keep in mind that Epi-Pet Sun Protector is the only FDA approved sunscreen for dogs. Even then, labels should be read properly so that you can be sure of what you are applying to your pet’s skin.  A natural sun screen you can use on dogs and cats is coconut oil; it just needs to be applied frequently to protect your pet.

 

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Dr. Loridawn Gordon

 

 

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August 7, 2013

Heat Stroke in Dogs

Filed under: Dogs,Dr. Loridawn's Lessons,Pet Health,Pet Safety Tips — Tags: , , — Dr. Loridawn Gordon @ 11:41 pm

Dog digging

We have all been there – waiting in the car while a friend runs into a store to “quickly” grab a last minute item you forgot before heading out for the day. But “quickly” seems to be the longest wait of your life. What could be less than a 5 minute wait begins to feel likes a daunting 20 minute wait. You begin to feel thirsty, wondering how long your friend will take, contemplating walking into the store to avoid the heat, and overall start feeling agitated. If you feel like this, just imagine what your dog would feel like being left in a car.

At least you would be able to open the doors, windows, or take a stroll in the parking lot. Your pet doesn’t have the same luxury, and as a result could suffer from heatstroke. Being trapped in a car on a hot summer day isn’t the only way that heat stroke can creep upon your dog, it can also be caused by:

  • Being tied up to a post with no way escape into shade
  • Excessive exercise in the sun without water
  • Being in the sun for too long

How is heat stroke created in the body to begin with? It is caused by your dog’s body heating up to the point that that the heat reaches their head. Once the heat reaches their head, it is hard for a pet to control their temperature, because their brain becomes impaired.

Signs of heat stroke include:

  • Excessive panting
  • Skin turns into a deep red shade
  • Gums turn bright red
  • Unusual breathing
  • Excessive drooling

You can overcome heat stroke in dogs by using cool water to rinse and cool him/her down. You should NOT use ice water. This will make the body shiver, which will increase the body’s temperature. You may also want to set up a fan that your pet can enjoy during the summer months.

My personal recommendation is to focus on the feet. You may have noticed that your dog digs during warm days – they do this because the cool dirt helps cool their feet. A dog’s sweat glands are located in the feet, so providing a cool bath to wade in or visiting a nearby stream will help cool their body down.  I also recommend using the homeopathic remedy, Belladonna. Of course, you should consult a professional regarding the use of this plant because if administered incorrectly, it can be very poisonous.  The best preventative strategy for heat stroke is to provide your pet with shade of lots of fresh water.

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Dr. Loridawn Gordon

 

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Disclaimer: 1st Pet Naturals is an education resource, and all information herein is strictly for educational purposes. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure disease, nor is it meant to replace the (prescribed) treatment or recommendations of your veterinarian or healthcare provider. Always inform your veterinarian or healthcare provider of any products that your pet is taking, including herbal remedies and supplements.