Friday, January 31, 2014

Dog Anal Glands and Scooting Problems

Anal glands can become a stinky problem with dogs. What are anal sacs? They are scent glands that fill up with a smelly fluid that is intended to be emptied each time a dog has a bowel movement enabling your dog to mark his territory. Each dog has his own individual scent---but anyone who has smelled it, can find it to be a disgusting odor. Some dogs are more predisposed to problems and problems are more common in small dogs like Toy and Miniature Poodles, Chihuahuas, and Lhasa Apsos. Also, certain breeds may be more likely to experience problems, such as Cocker Spaniels, Basset Hounds, and Beagles.

What types of problems? You may first notice that your dog scoots his rear along the carpet, frequently turns to lick or bite at the base of his tail or anal region, and may show signs of discomfort when passing stool. If you notice any of these signs you should see your veterinarian to make sure they are not impacted or infected. Also, many times the dog will show signs of other allergy related symptoms, such as ear infections, itchy skin, digestive issues (gas, loose stools). To avoid the problem in the future holistic care can help.

What can I do? The most important things to keep your dog happy and stink free is to make sure that they are eating a fresh foods diet,  are at a healthy weight, and getting plenty of exercise. To start use a fresh high moisture, hypoallergenic diet such as a raw frozen diet. Try using a protein source such as rabbit or venison avoiding high allergen proteins such as poultry.  Avoid dry food and grains.  Adding a teaspoon of canned pumpkin to each meal for fiber can help too. In addition adding Power Probiotic at every meal, K9 Digestive Enzymes, Amazing Omegas, will help your dog's elimination, improve digestion and greatly reduce the likelihood of anal gland problems.  Dogs with allergies can benefit from  AllerEaze an excellent quercetin supplement that is like a natural "benadryl".

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

What is a Heart Murmur? What Can Help My Pet's Heart Murmur?

Puff Daddy's Heart Murmur Gets Better!

"We had some good news about Puff Daddy on Friday! Ever since Puff Daddy was a pup (he is a 7 ½ yr old Chinese Crested Powder Puff now) different vets would say they heard a mild heart murmur (about 2-3 out of scale of 0-6). About two years ago, we started a heart disease protocol that included Amazing Omegas Purrfect Pet CoQ10 ,  and Resveratrol for Dogs. This month (January) we went in for Puff Daddy’s rabies vaccination and the vet listened to his heart for quite some time. She looked up amazed. She heard no murmur. She asked me what I was giving him and said to keep it up. Puff Daddy has the energy of a puppy, running at full-speed with dogs 3-4x his size. I am so grateful for all the advice Susan has given me with Puff Daddy and Sheeba before. "   Regards, Andrea,   Washington D.C.

A heart murmur is an abnormal heart sound, usually heard by listening to the heart with a stethoscope. Your veterinarian will classify the murmur by it's characteristics, including the timing (long or short) and location (where they are the loudest). The specific characteristics of the murmur, along with any symptoms that your pet might be showing, will help your veterinarian to determine what is causing the murmur.    The murmur may have been congenital (born with it) or developed from an infection, inflammatory or other disease.  Also, some breeds are prone to heart murmurs and heart disease.

Many heart murmurs do not require treatment but need to monitored as a heart murmur can be indicative of an underlying heart condition.  Depending upon the cause and severity of the murmur, your veterinarian will determine the best course of action.  A holistic approach using a healthy diet, supplements and consistent exercise can be very beneficial for dogs and cats with heart murmurs.  Feed a high fiber, fresh food (not dry) diet and avoid inflammatory foods such as grains, fatty foods and chemicals.  Omega 3 fatty acids are extremely important---use purified fish oil, flaxseed oil and cod liver oil.   Supplements can be very beneficial as they reduce inflammation and nourish the heart. Purrfect Pet CoQ10, Amazing Omegas, and Resveratrol for Dogs can give your pet a full and happy life. Just like Puff Daddy!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Cold Weather Safety for Your Pet

Winter is here and with it the cold weather. It also requires some special care and considerations for your pet's safety.  Here are some things to remember

  • Preventive Care Exam-The cold weather can make certain conditions worse and they may need extra support during this time of year for example arthritis may be more painful.
  • Cold Weather Tolerance- Be aware that each pet will have it's own tolerance for cold depending on coat, body fat, activity level,  age (puppies have a lower tolerance) and health. Diseases such as diabetes, heart and kidney disease may make it harder for them to regulate their body temperature and arthritis may be more painful.
  • Grooming and Dressing-Keeping your pet's coat longer during the winter can help keep them warm. Also dressing them properly (coat and booties) can help them maintain their body temperature. 
  • Avoid Over Exposure To the Cold - Even if they are dressed properly over exposure should be avoided.  This includes leaving your pet outside for long periods of time even in a car (just as in summer it can be dangerous) Frost-bite and Hypothermia can set in quickly.
  • Ice- Be caution of frozen bodies of water and don't let your dog off their leash. It might be thinner than you think. It can also be slippery and injury can occur
  • Wipe Their Paws and Coats- Paws can get dry and crack causing pain and infection. Wiping and check paws regularly can help. They may also come in contact with potentially hazardous substance (salt, antifreeze, deicers) and by wiping them down you can reduce the risk. 
  • Warm Place-Provide a warm safe place (away from drafts) for your pet.  Consider moving your outdoor pets inside. 
  • Plan Ahead- Be prepared for severe weather, blizzards, and power outages. Make sure you have enough supplies on hand in case of an emergency (food and medications).

Friday, January 24, 2014

Pasadena Bear Approaches Couple Standing on Porch

Bob and Irene McKeown don't see the bear on their porch!
Bear Approaches Couple Standing on Porch in Pasadena: When Bob and Irene McKeown return home to Scotland, they'll have quite a story to tell about their unexpected encounter in Southern California. While visiting the home of relatives in Pasadena on Tuesday morning, the couple was shocked to be approached by an unusual local resident.  Imagine how startled Bob McKeown must have been when he bent over to help his wife into the car and felt something brush up against his leg.  He turned around and what was there?  A bear cub!!!!  The baby bear is caught on video watching him leave his home following him to the car.  Must watch this video!  Chris Wolfe reports for the KTLA 5 News at 6:30 on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014.

Pet Nutritionist Consultations Available at VCA Mission Viejo Animal Hospital

Is your pet itching and scratching? Has your pet been diagnosed with cancer or an autoimmune disease? Learn how you can help your pet using natural holistic pet care. Inperson pet nutrition consultations available Thursday January 30th at VCA Mission Mission Viejo. Please call the hospital directly at 949-582-1220 to schedule an appointment with Susan Blake Davis, Pet Nutritionist.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

It's A Miracle: Beautiful Malamute Survives Liver Cancer


"Willow had her follow up scan and bloodwork today......4 months after surgery and diagnosis.  I’m so overwhelmed with gratitude and emotion I couldn’t wait to email you.  Her ALT level is normal!  Her ALKP is barely elevated!  Most importantly......the growth that was on the underside of the liver that was inoperable, is gone!!!!!  They did multiple scans in all different ways trying to find the tumor and it’s not there.  They looked at everything on her and nothing.  Everything is perfectly normal and healthy and the doctors said that if they didn’t know the history they would have questioned why they were even examining her.  She acts like a puppy and is so happy and energetic we almost can’t believe it.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!  You are an absolute angel from God."
Best,  The Wilcox Family 2014

Here are some of the Ask Ariel products that Willow is taking:
OncoPet Cancer Supplement

Resveratrol for Dogs

Curcumin For Dogs and Cats

Saturday, January 18, 2014

January is National Train Your Dog Month

We at Ask Ariel, are dedicated to the health, happiness and well being of you and your pet. With that in mind, each month we will bring you a focus for the month.  This month is National Train Your Dog Month.  For tips in training, we've posted below Top 10 Training Tips from, a wonderful pet rescue website that has saved millions of abandoned dogs and cats from being euthanized.  Both mental training and physical training is important to your pets overall health.  It reduces boredom, keeping them out of trouble, and allows your furry friend to join in many family activities such as: visiting friends, hikes, sporting events, swims at the beach, and playing at the park. A well trained pet aids in having a happy and harmonious home.

If your training plan includes physical training (running, long hikes, agility training) it is important to help protect your pet's joints.  Here is a link to a few vet-recommended joint support supplements.
Many pet owners only start using joint support supplements once a problem sets in, but joint support is especially important for any active dogs, especially large dogs doing agility training.  Using joint support on young dogs can help prevent the onset of arthritis and is essential for any dog that might have knee problems or hip dysplasia.  If a pet does develop an injury such as a torn ligament, using Canine Comfort can bring much needed natural pain relief.

Top Ten Training Tips from

Written By Traci Theis and Kellyann Conway

Top Ten Dog Training Tips
  1. Listen to Your Dog

    Learn to listen to your dog. If your dog appears to be uncomfortable meeting another dog, animal or person, don’t insist that he say hello. He’s telling you that he isn’t comfortable for a reason, and you should respect that. Forcing the issue can often result in bigger problems down the line.
  2. Be Generous with Your Affection

    Most people don’t have a problem being very clear about when they are unhappy with their dogs, but, they often ignore the good stuff. Big mistake! Make sure you give your dog lots of attention when he’s doing the right thing. Let him know when he’s been a good boy. That’s the time to be extra generous with your attention and praise. It’s even okay to be a little over the top.
  3. Does He Really Like It?

    Just because the bag says “a treat all dogs love” doesn’t mean your dog will automatically love it. Some dogs are very selective about what they like to eat. Soft and chewy treats are usually more exciting for your dog than hard and crunchy treats. Keep your eyes open for what he enjoys.
  4. Tell Him What You Want Him to Do

    There is nothing inherently wrong with telling your dog “no,” except that it doesn’t give him enough information. Instead of telling your dog “no,” tell him what you want him to do. Dogs don’t generalize well, so if your dog jumps up on someone to say hello and you say no, he may jump higher or he may jump to the left side instead of the right. A better alternative would be to ask him to “sit.” Tell him what you want him to do in order to avoid confusion.
  5. Be Consistent

    Whenever you’re training your dog, it’s important to get as many family members involved as possible so everyone’s on the same page. If you are telling your dog “off” when he jumps on the couch and someone else is saying “down,” while someone else is letting him hang out up there, how on earth is he ever going to learn what you want? Consistency will be the key to your success.
  6. Have Realistic Expectations

    Changing behavior takes time. You need to have realistic expectations about changing your dog’s behavior as well as how long it will take to change behaviors that you don’t like. Often behaviors which are “normal” doggie behaviors will take the most time such as barking, digging and jumping. You also need to consider how long your dog has rehearsed the behavior. For example, if you didn’t mind that your dog jumped up on people to say hi for the last seven years and now you decide that you don’t want him to do that anymore, that behavior will take a much longer time to undo than if you had addressed it when he was a pup. Remember it’s never too late to change the behavior some will just take longer than others.
  7. Don’t Underestimate the Benefits of Feeding a High Quality Food

    Feed your dog a high-quality diet with appropriate amounts of protein. If your dog spends most of his days lounging in your condo, don’t feed him food with a protein level that is ideal for dogs who herd sheep all day. The money that you will spend on feeding an appropriate quality food will often be money that you save in vet bills later on. I recommend you always check with your veterinarian for the right diet for your dog.
  8. You Get What You Reinforce – Not Necessarily What You Want

    If your dog exhibits a behavior you don’t like, there is a strong likelihood that it’s something that has been reinforced before. A great example is when your dog brings you a toy and barks to entice you to throw it. You throw the toy. Your dog has just learned that barking gets you to do what he wants. You say “no,” and he barks even more. Heaven forbid you give in and throw the toy now! Why? Because you will have taught him persistence pays off. Before you know it you’ll have a dog that barks and barks every time he wants something. The solution? Ignore his barking or ask him to do something for you (like “sit”) before you throw his toy.
  9. Bribery vs. Reward

    The idea of using treats to train is often equated with bribery. Truthfully, dogs do what works. If using treats gets them to do what you want, then why not? You can also use the world around you as a reinforcement. Every interaction you have with your dog is a learning opportunity, so when you think about it, you probably don’t use food very often except during active training sessions. So why does your dog continue to hang out? Because you reinforce him with praise, touch, games and walks. Just remember, the behavior should produce the treat; the treat should not produce the behavior.
  10. Freedom

    Let your new dog gradually earn freedom throughout your home. A common error that many pet parents make is giving their new dog too much freedom too soon. This can easily lead to accidents relating to housetraining and destructive chewing. So, close off doors to unoccupied rooms and use baby gates to section off parts of the house, if necessary. One of the best ways to minimize incidents is to keep your dog tethered to you in the house and by using a crate or doggie safe area when you can’t actively supervise him.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Main Coons Predisposed To Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM)

Maine Coons have some hereditary health issues that can be of concern, they include hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, hip dysplasia and spinal muscular atrophy.
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is the most common form of heart disease in cats. It causes thickening (hypertrophy) of the heart muscle. An echocardiogram can confirm whether a cat has HCM. HCM can be found in any breed, but Maine Coons are predisposed to the disorder.  Avoid breeders who claim to have HCM-free lines as no one can guarantee that their cats will never develop HCM.  Maine Coons that will be bred should be screened for HCM, and cats identified with HCM should be removed from breeding programs. Researchers have identified the genetic mutation that causes the development of HCM in the Maine Coon and have developed a genetic test that allows breeders to screen cats before breeding them. Do not buy a kitten whose parents have not been tested for this disease.

 Power Probiotic for Pets  and Purrfect Pet CoQ10 are essential for Maine Coons and other cats diagnosed and predisposed to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.  Purrfect Pet CoQ10 provides critical ubiquinol which is needed for a healthy heart. 

Purrfect Pet CoQ10

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Dog Liver Cancer: Holistic Treatments Can Help

The liver is a major organ that helps to detoxify the body.  It is also the organ that carcinogens and toxic compounds pass through, which can be a factor in dogs developing liver cancer. In addition, similar to people, the liver can also be an organ into which a primary cancer (in another part of the body) can metastasize to, accelerating the spread of the cancer to other parts of the body. It is very hard to detect canine liver cancer in the early stages of the disease. Some of the initial signs may be abdominal pain, inappetance, excessive weight loss, or a mass in the abdomen may be felt by your veterinarian.  A definitive diagnosis of canine liver cancer can only be obtained when a liver biopsy is done.

 In conjunction with conventional veterinary care, holistic care can be of help to your pet. Since the liver can regenerate new tissue, it is one of the few types of cancer, where we have seen especially good results in dogs.   Several of our clients have sent us testimonials about their dogs living far longer than prognosis, even with large masses, using a holistic approach, along with their veterinarian's recommendations.


"Thrilled to have had ONE additional year...IN January 2*0*1*2, I was informed that my girl, GRETA who is closest to me, sleeps by my side, accompanies me most anywhere, etc had TWO to FOUR weeks to live at the most..I was told she had inoperable liver cancer that had already spread to her lungs and was quite widespread.   Click here to view full testimonial

Supplements that have been especially helpful in treating liver disease and liver cancer include:


Special SAMe For Dogs

 Liver and Gallbladder Supplement For Pets

Friday, January 10, 2014

Loyal Golden Retriever Happy When Mom Pat Comes Home From the Hospital

Heartfelt wishes to our dear friend Pat who is recovering after being ill. This photo brought me to tears as her dog Terra was so upset and restless because Mommy was in the hospital.  What a loyal, faithful dog!  Look at the sheer contentment and peace on her face, now that she has her favorite Mom back home.  Pat is a wonderful Mom to many cats and dogs and we wish her a speedy recovery!

Omega Fish Oil Gives Indigo, The Amazing Border Collie, A Beautiful Coat

"Indigo is very healthy and loves the fish oil (Amazing Omegas) and her coat is amazing. I get so many comments on her beautiful coat and how beautiful and friendly she is.  We just love her and are blessed to have such a wonderful, affectionate, silly, happy girl in our lives.  Thank you!

LaRosa Family, CT 2014

Amazing Omegas fish oil for pets
Amazing Omegas

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Why is My Dog Always Licking His Paws?

Licking of the paws is part of a normal dog’s grooming behavior, but if it becomes excessive it could indicate a problem. It is important for you to ask the following questions:
  • When did it begin?  Is it a lifelong problem or a recent occurrence?
  • Has anything changed in their environment, life style or diet? 
  • When does your pet lick and chew it's paws the most?
You should also consider if it happens after being out in the yard,  after your dog goes on a walk, after eating or if it is seasonal.  Do your dogs' paws seem to be bothering him or when he walks is he favoring a paw? These questions will help you pinpoint the cause of the behavior and the underlining problem. 

The most common causes are: 
Allergies- often a pet may have both food and environmental allergies but the symptoms only become noticeable during certain times of the year.  The K9 Yeast Defense Package combined with Proaller and Notatum can give them great relief.  The dog's paws often become wet and stained from the chewing which can lead to yeast overgrowth and a consistent "yeasty---cheese like" odor.  The Proaller and Notatum are very helpful for reducing itching and chewing.

To help with contact allergies, consider specialty dog socks to limit exposure when outside or soak their paws in the bathtub or sink  upon your return from outdoor activities.  For food allergies a special hypoallergenic diet may be required.  Keep the following ingredients out of your pet’s diet: Corn, Soy, Chicken, and Peanut Butter.

Bacterial And Fungal Paw Infections- Abnormal odor, pain, redness, swelling and limping are the most common signs of these infections.  They may need to be treated with antibiotics or holistic supplements. Put an end to your dog’s licking and discomfort once and for all. Unlike some ailments, a yeast infection in dogs can be treated by changing their diet and using a yeast killing formula like K9 Yeast Defense with Power Probiotic

Injury or Arthritis- Your pet will lick an injured or painful area to try and heal it.  If they are limping or appear stiff, check for an wound or tender area.  If it is determine to be arthritis related our Arthritis & Joint Support Kit could help a great deal.

Boredom or Psychological Causes-Self-grooming is the natural way that dogs pass the time , but it can also be an indicator of anxiety, stress or boredom.  Consider if it happens when you are away from your pet or a change in the household...With a little lifestyle adjustment such as: more exercise, giving  them distraction toys, or limiting their time alone your pet can stop the behavior.

Monday, January 6, 2014

What To Look For In A Good Pet Food

A good pet food should contain meat, poultry or fish clearly identifiable in the first ingredients.  There should be a healthy balance between protein, fiber, fats (especially Omega 3 fatty acids such as flax seed and fish oil) and a limited amount of carbohydrates. Even if a pet food  is “organic” or holistic, it may be filled with soy, potatoes, peas and flour, which can contribute to a variety of symptoms in some pets (allergies, UTIs, etc).  For example,  dogs on "grain-free"  dry dog food may still suffer with chronic yeast and skin problems because the food is filled with carbohydrates.    Pets need fresh ingredients in their food---add steamed green beans, chopped broccoli or butternut squash for extra fiber or nutrition.  Pumpkin puree is an excellent source of fiber and beta carotene and can help pets with digestive issues.  Avoid feeding just dry food---canned or raw are optimal along some homemade ingredients. For more information on pet nutrition see the article:  What do dogs eat? Dog Nutrition 101
Friday, January 3, 2014

12 Year Old Lhasa Apso Recovers With Heart Supplements & IBD Support

Cinnamon 2

“I  wanted to let you know that our 12 year old Lhasa Apso Cinnamon is doing very, very well on the IBD Kit, in fact, far better than she did on steroids. I only wish the vet that put her on steroids would have told me there was a chance they would destroy her heart. I would have sought an alternative treatment for her much sooner than I did. Anyway, her poop is a much better consistency, and her appetite is greatly improved since she's been on the IBD kit and I thank you immensely for your help and your products.

Additionally, I'd like to praise the heart supplements (Vitality Now and Purrfect Pet CoQ10 .  In this picture, you'll notice she Cinnamon is in a baby stroller. She's been diagnosed with congestive heart failure (grade 4 heart murmur) and her vet advised that exercise would be good for her but, I need to watch for signs of exhaustion i.e. head down, tail down, gait slowing. Daily, we go on a walking trail with Cinnamon walking and me pushing the stroller in case she tires and needs to ride for awhile.  Most days she is able to walk at least 1 mile, often 2 miles, without the need for the stroller. She walks off leash, so is able to walk at her own pace, but still, I feel the heart products have enabled her to live a more comfortable and enjoyable life. Prior to starting her on the heart supplements,  I was told by her vet that the heart failure was advancing rapidly, going from a grade 1 to 4 in just a couple of months. She is now stable and the heart failure has not advanced for over a month. She also seems to have more energy than she's had for quite some time because, she has once again gained a desire to chase rabbits and squirrels. Thanks so very much for your products.”

Timmons Family, Kansas December 2013
Wednesday, January 1, 2014

New Year Resolutions for Pets

Happy New Year! It is the time of year when many of us are thinking about making resolutions. The most common resolutions for people can also apply to your pet.  So, as you begin your planning, be sure to include your pets and make 2014 the best year for both of you.

I will commit to a good nutrition plan
Just like people, good nutrition for your pet is the key to good health.  Often a  poor diet is responsible for health problems including obesity and associated diseases, skin and coat problems,  and allergies. Giving your pet a well balanced, age appropriate diet will help ensure a happy, healthy pet.  It is also important that the quantity of food that you give matches the life stage and activity level of your pet. Click here to learn more about what to look for in a good diet for your cat or dog.

I will commit to regular exercise with my pet
Regular exercise is important to keep your pet in good physical shape and reduce the risk of obesity.  It also reduces the risk of heart and joint problems.  It can be as simple as a daily walk or can be more strenuous depending on your pets physical condition. Exercise is a great way to bond with your pet and as an added benefit, an exhausted dog is less likely to engage in destructive behaviors. To exercise a cat, you could play with them, making them chase a feather or string. 

I will commit to maintaining good grooming practices 
Regular grooming including, bathing, coat maintenance,toe nail clips, and teeth brushing (or non-anesthetic cleanings). They are not just to help your pet look good, but are important to their overall health.  Yes, no one likes a smelly dog or enduring “cat breath” , but they could be an indicator of an underlying medical condition.  If the problem does not resolve with regular grooming, please seek assistance from your veterinarian.  

I will commit to getting health check ups
A visit to your veterinarian regularly is a good way to stay ahead of any potential problems. Preventive care is much less expensive than waiting to deal with a major illness or condition and it can also save your pet from suffering.  Annual laboratory tests for all pets (even young pets) provides a “baseline” which can be invaluable.  Learn more about pet health conditions.

I will commit to keeping my pet safe
Keeping pets safe is something most pet owners take for granted, but there could be hazards lurking everywhere.  Take the time to make precautions in your home and yard.  Analyze what toxic substance your pet could gain access to and what chemicals are used in the area your pets reside. Also include an assessment of physical hazards such as fencing, choking hazards, swimming pools and anything that they could get caught on or fall from.

I will commit to ensuring my pet gets enough love and attention
Life gets busy and all too often, our pets take a backseat to other demands. Try to make time for your pet---quality can be more important than quantity.  Sometimes a neighbor or family friend may be eager to help you care for your pet and pet sitters can fill in for you on a long day.  Many doggie playcare places are affordable and can take the stress off of you if you are working long hours.