Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Pet Obesity--It's Time to Take Action Now!

Pictured above is our most recent rescue dog Daisy who has been the victim of animal abuse. Why animal abuse you might say? Well......Daisy when first rescued weighed in nearly 40 pounds heavier than she should weigh AND she was so overweight, she could barely move her neck. She couldn't wear a collar because it would fall off due to the fact that her head was smaller than her neck. It took Daisy nearly 45 minutes to WALK ONE BLOCK! Yet, Daisy is a purebred 4 year old labrador retriever who should be running free and chasing around in the yard. Instead, what did her owners do? FED HER....all day long and on top of that, they bred her as well. Daisy was gasping for air just to take a few steps. Her coat was like steel wool and she looked like a pot bellied pig with her nipples hanging down so low, they nearly touched the ground. This is a disgusting example of how people can take a beautiful dog and terribly neglect it--literally ruining the poor dog's life. Her owners now had a problem--they sold all of Daisy's puppies, but what to do with her? So they decided to take her to the pound to euthanize her---all because of their own abuse! Fortunately, the shelter by law had to wait 2 days in which time Karen, our dedicated volunteer at Ariel Rescue saved her. She took Daisy to the veterinarian and we had her bloodwork done. Daisy's thyroid and other blood values were not functioning properly. Within 10 days, Karen has already trimmed 9 pounds from Daisy (pictured above after losing the weight) and her coat is now improving as well. She still has 30 pounds to go and we will be tracking her progress. We will all cheer for Daisy as she makes this incredible recovery, thanks to the incredible dedication of Karen and Ariel Rescue volunteers.

Many people don't realize the effect that obesity can have on their pets. It is not just a physical appearance issue. It is a very serious health concern. Obesity is linked to heart disease, cancer, liver disease, diabetes, joint problems--the list goes on and on. Giving your pet that extra biscuit which you might think is just a little treat, can pack on pounds year after year. Over 60% of pets in the United States are obese. Shower your pets with love and attention--go on a walk--play with them, please, please remember, just like you, your pets are what they eat!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Abandoned Husky Gets a New Leash on Life!

Pictured above is beautiful Sasha who was rescued by Ariel Rescue in the nick of time. Sasha is a 6 year old Siberian Husky who was found as a stray in a lower income neighborhood. She was brought to the Orange County Shelter. This sweet, lovely girl was so gentle and kind and ever so cuddly! But, the shelter found a mass on her back. Unfortunately, shelter dogs are put to sleep very quickly when something like this is discovered. Karen, our head volunteer at Ariel Rescue rushed to save her. We took her to the veterinarian and had the mass aspirated. It turned out to be an infected hair follicle---not cancer!!! We had Sasha's teeth cleaned, removed the mass and gave her a beauty bath. Poor Sasha was so filthy it took several baths to get the dirt out. Her fur had looked brown on the legs when it actually is white! Sasha was adopted by a lovely couple who had another Siberian husky and are very familiar with the breed.
If you are interested in adopting a Siberian Husky, please contact Rhonda at Husky Haven of La at www.huskyhavenofla.org
Sunday, May 17, 2009

Dogs With Arthritis Slowing Down

Many dogs start slowing down with age, limping or showing signs of difficulty getting up and down. The effects can come on gradually and it is sometimes difficult to recognize until the problem becomes very obvious. It is important that you take your pet to the veterinarian for an examination. Quite commonly, your dog may be diagnosed with arthritis if the problem has come on gradually with age. In an effort to promote quality of life and keep the dog comfortable, non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) will often be prescribed. Examples are Rimadyl, Metacam and Deramaxx to name a few. While these medications are helpful for chronic pain management, they do have side effects especially affecting the liver. This is why your veterinarian will often recommend that if your pet is using NSAIDs that your dog get a blood test every so often to check your dog's liver values. While NSAIDs can be very helpful and even critical for some pets that are in chronic pain, for most pets, there are holistic alternatives that should be tried first and/or in conjunction with their use.

It is essential to use Arthrosoothe For Pets to help your pet feel better. Arthrosoothe For Pets is the most comprehensive arthritis product available.

Many of our clients are confused about these medications and somehow think that because their dog is no longer limping or in pain, that the joint or limb problem has been cured. This is not at all the case--in fact, it is quite the contrary. The medication is actually reducing inflammation which is giving temporary pain relief.

To really help support your dog's long-term pain, mobility and joints, you need to use vitamins and nutritional supplements that are proven to help. Many minerals such as calcium, nutraceuticals such as glucosamine and herbs such as turmeric and boswelia have been shown to help. It is important to find combination formulas that contain a comprehensive mixture of vitamins, herbs and nutraceuticals such as Arthrosoothe For PetsSpecial SAMe and Chinese herbal formulas such as Mobility 2 will also help. Omega 3 fish oils such as Amazing Omegas help reduce inflammation and provide valuable nutrients to the joints as well. Many times using these nutritional formulas can be enough that the dog may only require NSAIDs after heavy exercise.
It is important that you use these formulas, if possible, as your dog starts to age, rather than waiting until the arthritis has set in. But, it is never too late to start with them and they can certainly be beneficial to use in addition to using NSAIDs. Many clients report that they were able to greatly reduce the frequency of using NSAIDs on their dog because of the benefits achieved from using these nutritional supplements.

Finally, acupuncture and chiropractic for dogs are also very important considerations. Ariel (pictured above at age 14) was able to run and jump at 14 years of age because of her weekly chiropractic and acupuncture treatments with Dr. David Gordon, holistic veterinarian. Dr. Gordon performs both acupuncture and chiropractic at VCA Arroyo Animal Hospital in Lake Forest, California as well as stem cell surgery. We offer combination appointments which also include a nutrition consultation and supplements for optimal support. For more information about our services, please visit www.AskAriel.com If you live outside of the Southern California area, you can find a veterinarian who performs acupuncture in your area by going to http://www.aava.org
Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day Tribute--Mother of the Year

Please watch this incredible story from CBS News entitled "Mother of the Year". This is a short video which is a real tear jerker! See animals, especially shelter animals at their best. Watch Lilly the dog nursing baby kittens. What a wondeful, heartwarming story. Enjoy!

Click here: YouTube - Mother of the Year
Saturday, May 9, 2009

Homemade Diets For Dogs with Cancer

On the Internet, there are many homemade diets for dogs with cancer and unfortunately most are not accurate. Some include unhealthy ingredients such as pork fat and other foods that might actually aggravate your pet's health. When your dog has cancer, you need to be sure you are providing the right BALANCE of nutrients that support your pet's particular situation. For example, we have many patients who come to us who are following a "dog cancer diet" they found online that advises them to use an overabundance of fatty protein when their pet has elevated liver or kidney blood values. We strongly urge you to schedule an appointment to get the exact percentage of ingredients based on your pet's bloodwork and symptoms. We do not have "canned diets" because every pet needs a different ratio and we use mathematical models to calculate for you. We work in conjunction with many veterinary oncologists and can provide you with sound advice not just about diet but about a supplement regimen that will support your dog with or without chemotherapy. Dr. Gordon and I see patients in person at the VCA Arroyo Animal Hospital in Lake Forest, CA and also provide telephone consultations to people all over the world about dog cancer and appropriate diets. You will need to schedule a combination appointment with me and Dr. Gordon if you would like advice regarding medications or your pet's prognosis. If you would just like advice regarding the best supplements and diet for your dog with cancer, then you can just schedule an appointment for a nutrition consultation.. If you would like to get expert advice on a cancer diet for your pet, please complete the pet health consultation form on www.AskAriel.com for a telephone consultation or call VCA Arroyo Animal Hospital at 949-770-1808 to schedule an inperson appointment in Orange County, CA.
Friday, May 8, 2009

Helping Dogs with Allergies, Scratching and Itching

This time of a year can be very uncomfortable for dogs as the weather gets warmer. www.AskAriel.com has had tremendous success helping cats and dogs with allergies but it requires a comprehensive program that addresses both environmental and potential food allergies.

Here are some general points about allergies you should be aware of:

1) Allergies are cumulative. In other words, a pet may have both food and environmental allergies but the symptoms only become noticeable during certain times of the year. This doesn’t mean your pet doesn’t have allergic reactions all the time. It just means that the situation builds up similar to a balloon that fills up with air until it pops. In your pet’s case, it may mean that all of a sudden your pet has hot spots or starts chewing on its paws or rear end during the hot summer months but most likely has underlying digestive issues all year round..

2) Cats and dogs may display allergy symptoms differently. Cats may have respiratory symptoms, vomiting and other digestive disorders due to allergies as well as skin reactions. Dogs may have scratching, itching, chewing on fur, ear infections, scooting on their rear end and weepy eyes.

3) Most of the time, pets have BOTH food and environmental allergies. There is no one medication or supplement that will cure your pet’s symptoms. Skin problems are tough and require a comprehensive effort. Using the following protocol for your pet can be helpful:

What can be done to help your pet with allergies? Ask Ariel has a full range of products and services to assist you. http://www.askariel.com/pages.asp?pid=allergies
Sunday, May 3, 2009

Happy Tails From German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County

What a wonderful happy ending for beautiful 8 1/2 year old Sasha (pictured above) all because of German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County and the caring heart of a wonderful Orange County resident Marcia Leong. Poor Sasha's owner passed away and Sasha remained loyally beside her deceased owner in the house for 4-5 days until a neighor discovered them. The owner, an elderly woman had a son who could not keep Sasha and she was brought to an animal shelter. The poor dog was so stressed from the situation and the loss of her owner, that she broke out in painful sores all over her back. She was very emaciated as well and had most likely not been cared for especially well due to her owner's ill health. Sasha's time was limited at the shelter but German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County saved her.

Sasha was taken to the veterinarian and treated for her sores but she was very sad and her health was declining. Marcia Leong, a wonderful woman and pet owner, gave dear Sasha a new leash on life. Marcia had recently lost her beloved German Shepherd Gretchen but has a lovely beagle Chuckie and several kitties. It was a miracle, but Sasha managed to get along with EVERYBODY! She is a sweet and loving dog that thanks to the kindess of all involved is getting the life she deserves. She is now thriving in her new home, gaining weight and getting the best veterinary care imaginable through Ask Ariel and VCA Arroyo Animal Hospital.

We can't say enough about the wonderful volunteers at German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County and especially Maria Dales, founder and director, who has worked tirelessly to improve the lives of all rescue animals throughout Southern California. We applaud Maria for all of her incredible efforts! To learn more about Maria and German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County, please visit their website http://www.gsroc.org/ They have beautiful dogs for adoption and even if you can't adopt, they would greatly appreciate any donations. All donations are tax-deductible.