Thursday, March 30, 2017

The Effects of Secondhand Smoke on Pets

If you need a reason to quit smoking, now there is one more--the health and safety of your pets!  There are an estimated 71 million pet owners in the United States and about one-fifth of those are smokers.  There is growing evidence from recent studies, that animals in the home of smokers are facing more health risks from the secondhand smoke than those in non-smoker homes.  Some examples of the health issues affecting pets:  respiratory problems, nasal and lung cancer in dogs, lymphoma and respiratory problems in cats. Second-hand smoke is especially harmful if you have a cat with asthma. To learn more about how to help your kitty with feline asthma, click here.
Wednesday, March 29, 2017

The Benefits of Freeze Dried Raw Diets, Toppers and Treats For Pets

While raw frozen diets may be the gold standard of pet nutrition, not everyone can use them all the time due to a variety of factors such as cost, travel and refrigeration requirements.   Some pets may not like the taste or texture of raw frozen diets and their high fat and protein content may not be appropriate for certain pets.  As a convenient alternative to raw frozen diets, some manufacturers have introduced freeze-dried raw food which retains many of the benefits of raw but is more convenient and doesn't require freezing or refrigeration.   Freeze dried diets, treats and toppers seem to be especially tasty!  Some pets that won't eat raw frozen food will gobble up the freeze dried version from the same manufacturer which contains the identical ingredients! 

Freeze dried food is more nutritious than dry kibble or dehydrated food as the freeze-drying process retains much of the nutrient value since the food is not exposed to high temperatures.    Freeze dried foods use pressure to remove moisture.  This is in contrast to dehydrated foods which use low heat for an extended period of time to removed moisture and dry kibble which is cooked at high temperatures, resulting  in the loss of many nutrients.  Freeze dried raw and raw frozen food are also highly digestible as they contain a minimum of carbohydrates and contain food in its most natural state.  This means better nutrition for your pet and less pooh pickup for you!  While there are many brands of freeze dried raw food and treats, our favorites include Instinct, Stella and Chewys, Primal and Halo (treats).     
Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Signs Your Cat or Dog May Have A Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

Does Your Dog Or Cat Have Any of These Symptoms of a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)?

The following signs can be symptoms of UTI or bladder Infections in cats and dogs.
 Be sure to check with your veterinarian if your pet is displaying these symptoms:

* Straining to urinate
* Waking up in the night to urinate
* Blood in the urine
* Excessive licking at the genital area
* Frequent urination
* Excessive water drinking
* Urinating outside of the litter box 

The Pet UTI Prevention Formula along with diet changes can help prevent future infections. Often even after antibiotic treatment a pet can get into a chronic cycle of repeat infections.  That is why making the diet changes and using the Pet UTI Prevention Formula can help end the chronic infections.   In addition to cranberry and D-mannose, two ingredients proven to help prevent bacteria from clinging to the bladder wall, the Pet UTI Prevention Formula contains a number of herbs helpful for preventing a recurring urinary tract infection.

Does your cat or dog get chronic urinary tract infections?  Feel free to email us at and we will be happy to help.
Monday, March 27, 2017

Don't Forget To Deduct Your Business Miles

           Tax Season Reminder: If you use your car for business,
don't forget to deduct your driving miles!

 Have a question about your pet?  Please email us at
Sunday, March 26, 2017

Hope You Have a Snoozy Sunday!

Hope you can get a chance to relax and have a snoozy Sunday!

Have a question about your pet? Please feel free to email us at

Please know we can't provide veterinary advice but we have many articles about pet nutrition and how to help your pet feel better using natural, holistic care.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Giving Thanks To A Client Who Goes The Extra Mile For Her Cats

Just wanted to share this wonderful note we received from Tara in Texas.  Tara is doing a great job trying to help Kitty, her 16 year old cat who has stomatitis. It's very hard when you have a multiple cat household and one cat needs a special diet. Tara is doing an amazing job trying to convert everybody over!
‎Tara S to Ask Ariel Your Pet Nutritionist
"I feel really complelled to write about how wonderful AskAriel is with their wonderful customer service!!! They truly care and are very knowledgable; you can tell. I always receive good advice and prompt replys in my email enquiries. I will be a customer for life. Thank you so much for all that you do! 5 stars!"
Friday, March 24, 2017

AHA Hero Dog Awards Voting Opens Soon!

The American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards nominees will be introduced on March 29th when voting opens.  Visit them at to vote for your favorite hero. We would like to share the story of last year's winner Hooch.

Hooch American Humane Hero of the Year for 2016
"Hooch is a French Mastiff with badly cropped ears, a broken tail, no tongue and the brightest spirit you’ll ever encounter. Zach Skow, of Marley’s Mutts Dog Rescue, was alerted about him by a shelter in Bakersfield, and was told that the dog wouldn’t eat or drink, and would instead thrash his food and water bowls around like a maniac. By the time he was pulled to freedom, he was 35 pounds underweight – starving, dehydrated and severely malnourished. Never thinking to check for a missing tongue, they thought he might have a broken or dislocated jaw that was causing his behavior. When taken to the vet, he was sedated to ready him for x-rays, and the gruesome discovery was made… Hooch’s tongue had been savagely removed at its base, likely in an attempt to prime him for the role of a bait dog.  After using a feeding tube (Hooch kept yanking it out) it was discovered that Hooch could be hand-fed!  He tilts his head back while Zach has a handful of food and places it in the back of Hooch’s throat and they let gravity do the rest. Hooch stands for overcoming adversity, bravery and living in the moment. He spends many hours with Marley’s Mutts Miracle Mutts division, as a therapy dog.  He works with autistic, abused and special needs children.  Hooch is known for showing patience and kindness and is proof that anything can be overcome. He is our hero and the best mascot for bravery around." from American Humane Hero Dog Awards site

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Brown Rice--Is It Healthy For Your Cat or Dog?

Rice is one of the world’s most popular foods, is a major component of many people’s diet and often considered a “comfort” food, but should it be for your pet? It is important for us to remember that what is considered a “healthy” diet for humans does not always translate to be the same for our canine and feline companions.  Brown Rice is less processed than white rice and is produced by harvesting the seeds running the rice through a rice huller that removes the outer grain husk.  White rice has the added step of removing the germ and the inner husk which then removes even more nutrients and fiber.
Why Is Rice An Ingredient Dog and Cat Food?
Many pet food companies use rice as a “healthy” inexpensive carbohydrate that has less incident of being an allergen then other grains such as corn. It is a filler that can bring up the protein percentage on the label INSTEAD of using the more costly real meat, fish or poultry.   “Premium” brands may market the fact they use brown rice or even organic brown rice as a benefit, but the fact is, the rice is still a replacement for the real nutrition a pet needs.   Feeding brown rice and starchy carbohydrates can affect the pet's overall nutritional balance contributing to obesity, yeast overgrowth, diabetes and a weakened immune system Most pet nutritionists agree that dogs (and cats) were originally meat-eaters and although they have become more “domesticated”, this still holds true. Cats are carnivores and do not need carbohydrates while dogs thrive when their diet consists of minimal carbohydrates.

Effects of Rice on Your Pet's Health
If your pet is showing signs of itching, licking, chewing, digestive problems, urinary tract infections, hypothyroidism (dogs), hyperthyroidism (cats), upper respiratiory infections and so on (the list goes on and on), grains such as rice, no matter how wonderful they sound for you to eat, should not be a part of your pet's.  The ONLY time rice may be helpful (and even then our preference would be to feed sweet potatoes instead) is when the pet requires a low protein diet due to kidney failure or liver disease. Yes, there are plenty of exceptions where some pets seem to do just fine on diets with plenty of grains, but as a general rule, grains such as rice contribute to inflammation and an increased carbohydrate load.

Avoid Rice AND Grains In Your Pet's Food and Treats
We do not recommend feeding your pets treats or pet foods containing brown rice or any rice. Just a few examples of cat and dog food brands that contain rice:  Rachael Ray Nutrish Canidae Life Stages, Blue Buffalo Life Protection Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets, Nature's Recipe Limited Ingredient,  Nutro Wholesome Essentials, California Naturals Dry,  Simply Nourish, Royal Canin and Hills Prescription Diets, Purina ProPlan and many, many more.
Have A Question About Your Pet's Well Being? Read our articles about pet nutrition or email us at  Please be sure to include your pet's diet on the order form at checkout and our nutritionist will include a diet suggestion for your pet on the order packing slip that comes with your product directions.
Monday, March 20, 2017

Blue Buffalo Dog Food Recall of Rocky Mountain Red Meat Canned Food

Blue Buffalo issued a voluntary recall for one production lot of Blue Wilderness Rocky Mountan Recipe Red Meat Wet Food for Adult Dogs because it could potentially have elevated beef thyroid hormones in the food.  Pet owners can return the food to the stores for a refund.  Would like to encourage pet owners to learn more about raw frozen diets as these contain fresh ingredients such as vegetables, enzymes and real meat.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Dog Burping, Swallowing and Regurgitating During The Night May Be A Sign of Indigestion

Do any of these sound familiar? Vomiting, gulping, swallowing sounds, burping or regurgitation during the night? Excessive Grass eating? These may be symptoms associated with acid reflux and indigestion. Acid reflux is painful and your dog may be uncomfortable or nauseated.

Digestive issues rank as one of the most common reasons for a visit to the veterinarian. Your dog's diet could be a contributing factor. Diet changes, probiotics and digestive supplements can give your dog a great deal of relief, improve digestion and overall health.

Have a question about your pet?  While we cannot provide veterinary advice, we would be happy to help point you in the right direction.  We have many articles that can help.  Please feel free to email us at
Friday, March 17, 2017

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Rescue dog Wrangler (a special needs dog) wanted to make sure you smile today! Wishing you and your pets a Happy St. Patrick's Day with a pot o' gold of good health!  Wrangler is featured her with the supplements he takes.  Wrangler has a feeding tube and many health issues, but is loved and cherished by all!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Jack Russell Terrier With Kidney Disease Lives To 16 1/2 Years

Puck with his girl Kinzie
Puck the Jack Russell Terrier suffered with Kidney Disease and other age related conditions. He was helped with the use of Ask Ariel's supplements, which enabled him to spend more time with his girl Kinzie! Here are the kind words his family shared with us:

"We found Susan Davis and after our dog (Puck the Jack Russell Terrier) was diagnosed with renal failure when he was around 8. We were devastated. A friend sent us to Susan, who not only gave us hope, but was by our side, helping us with diet and supplements and everything we could do to support his body. If we ran out of Renelix I would see a change in him within a few days. I got to the point where I always had an extra one on hand.  We are so grateful that Susan's knowledge and expertise helped Puck live to the ripe old age of 16 1/2. Thank you Susan - for all you do!"

Sue, Mike, Kinzie, (and especially) Puck  - California 

Some of the products that helped Puck were:
Renelix- detox formula that flushes out toxins accumulated in the kidneys.
Power Probiotic for Pets-supports digestion and overall good health (great for all pets!)
Soothing Digestives Relief for Pets- provides a calming, healing effect to your pet's intestinal tract
Purrfect Pet CoQ10- powerful antioxidant, scientifically proven to slow the progression of kidney disease
Colostrum- enhances the digestive system, immune function and repair of skin collagen, bone cartilage and nerve tissue 
Lypozyme- Digestive enzymes that helps with the digestion of protein, fats and carbohydrates
Oxicell SE for Pets- Topical multi-vitamin and antioxidant formula

Monday, March 13, 2017

Supplements For IBD Help Stop A Cat From Vomiting

I just wanted to thank you for your help with my cat! I contacted you months ago after having months and months of issues with my young cat vomiting. After several vets and thousands of dollars later- they had no answers but possibly IBS. The IBD kit and diet changes you recommended have made such an improvement in her vomiting! It was happening every couple of days and now it's been a few weeks! I'm just so grateful for your recommendation and that my cat is improving and I wanted to let you know. Thank you from the bottom of my heart! 

Sincerely, Velissa- California, 2017

Friday, March 10, 2017

Tips On How To Find The Best Kitty Litter

We asked Michelle a holistic-minded kitty mom of two cats for tips on how to find the best kitty litter and she graciously provided these terrific tips:

What to look for when searching for the perfect kitty litter for your feline family member:

-Clumping or not clumping?
-Scented or unscented?
-Dust free
-What kind of litter (clay, walnut shell etc)

There are many options to choose from including walnut shells, grass, pellets, newspaper, crystals, wheat & corn--So which to choose? Start by looking at the ingredients! This applies to food, toys and even litter. Cats spend a fair amount of time in the litter box and I personally don’t want my cat (or myself) inhaling anything that may be toxic or cause health problems later on in life (e.g. "litter lung"). There can be a lot of fragrance additives which may help eliminate the smell of your pet's waste, but do you want your cat inhaling synthetic fragrances?? I was using the walnut shell and it did a decent job but recently decided to try out an unscented grass option. So far, I have to say I'm loving it!! The unscented grass option does a pretty good job keeping odors to a minimum, doesn't track litter everywhere, clumps really well, is dust free and best of all, is completely natural dried grass with no additives or chemicals.

It's best to use a high-wall litter box and keep it filled 3-4 inches at all times. When you provide enough litter, your cat will be able to cover their waste which helps minimize the smells. It's also important to clean/scoop the litter box 2 times a day to keep odors at a minimum.
Wednesday, March 8, 2017

5 Pet Safety Tips As Winter Ends

Spring is almost here and we have all enjoyed some unseasonably warm, beautiful weather.  But the cold weather and potential for a few last storms is still projected.  Keeping your pet safe and warm will help avoid accidents.  Here are a few safety tips:

• Carefully assess ice conditions for thin ice when walking your dog near waterways. Even at offleash parks there are often ponds with opportunities for a dog to fall in.  Thin ice can be hard to detect so if you do let your dog run offleash, especially in wilderness areas, be vigilant to monitor your pet at all times.  Sadly, every year dogs die because of falling through thin ice and often there just isn't the time or resources readily available to save them.

• If the weather starts to warm up and you are enjoying a little fresh air with the windows open, be sure to put screens on if you have cats.  Your cat may see the open window as a wonderful new opportunity and could fall or jump out.

• If there is another snowstorm, watch out for ice melts which can be toxic to dogs.  Dogs can lick their paws after a wintry walk and expose themselves to chemicals.  Be sure to clean your dog's paws with a moist towel after a walk.

• Bathe your pet as little as possible if there is another cold spell. Overbathing can dry up the essential oils on your pet's coat.

• Keep your dog on a leash if there is heavy snowfall.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Blind Kitty With UTIs and Kidney Problems Feels Better!


Meet Zinky! Zinky is a blind 10 year old kitty who was rescued from a shelter when she was kitten.  She developed an infection at 6 months which caused her to go blind.  Her Mom Carole takes amazing care of her and says that Zinky is so sweet and follows her everywhere.  Zinky was having some health issues but her Mom just reported the following:

"Zinky was having UTIs and Kidney problems until I found Ask Ariel and give her Power Probiotic, Renelix, and Oxicell. Now she is doing great!!  Carole-Connecticut, 2017

We are so happy our products could help Zinky feel better and grateful for the wonderful pet parents such as Carole who rescue pets from the shelters.
Monday, March 6, 2017

Ariel The Inspiring Dog Who Was Forever Young

In memory of our precious dog Ariel who passed away 12 years ago, just a few months after was established. Ariel was the mascot for Ariel Rescue, our dog rescue that saved over 1500 shelter dogs and of course, it is her life that was the inspiration for Ask Ariel Your Pet Nutritionist. It is amazing how the love of a pet can change your life completely! We spent 14 wonderful years with this awesome dog, who had so much love to give and such an amazing personality. She had a passion for life and was "forever young". Read more about her amazing life  by clicking this link.
Friday, March 3, 2017

Jack Russell Terrier Loves Her Squeaky Toy!


 Wow! What an adorable picture! Thank you for sharing the photo Leslie! Here is beautiful Willow enjoying her squeaky toy that she won in the Valentine toy sweepstakes! has a complete library of articles on how you can use holistic care to help your dog or cat feel better.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Rabbit and Venison Game Meats Offer A Hypoallergenic Diet For Pets

Does your pet have itchy and inflamed skin, recurrent infections or digestive issues such as: vomiting, diarrhea and loose stools?

All can be signs of a food allergy from a repeat exposure to an allergen which causes the immune system to overreact. Often the offender is the protein source in the allergic food and your pet's  immune system needs a break.  Changing your pet's diet to a low carbohydrate canned or raw frozen novel protein food can be very helpful.  (Dry food is high in carbohydrates and can still be problematic.)

So, what is a novel protein? It is simply a protein your pet has never consumed before.  The most common food allergens in cats are fish, poultry and grains--ingredients commonly found in most pet foods.   While some "hypoallergenic" pet foods may simply replace chicken with turkey or duck, what we have discovered (after years of treating pets with food allergies) is that it's best to switch food families in their entirety.  This is because the allergic reaction can include all protein sources within a particular family as they may be very similar in their molecular structure.  For example many people believe that goat milk is fine for their pet even though their pet is allergic to cow milk.  The reality is that the two forms of milk are very close in structure just as chickens are very similar to ducks and it's best to play it safe and try a completely different food family. When it comes to food allergies, when in doubt, avoid the food temporarily and then at a later time, you can try to reintroduce and see how your pet responds.  

Two novel protein sources to consider that have worked well for many allergic pets are rabbit and venison.  Some pets that have allergies to beef and lamb may not fare as well with venison, so for severely allergic pets, rabbit may work best.  (Allergy testing is also available through your veterinarian which can help determine if your pet might be able to tolerate either of these.)

Benefits of Rabbit
  • A lean all-white meat protein that offers great nutrition.
  • Higher in protein than chicken, turkey, beef, duck and lamb and contains essential amino acids that help build lean muscles and boost immune system.
  • Low in saturated fats, but contains healthy fats which help provide a shiny coat and healthy joints
  • Contains Vitamin B12 which supports a healthy nervous system.
Benefits of Venison
  • Lower in fat than most other meat protein sources (such as beef and pork) and usually highly digestible
  • Good source of B vitamins, zinc, phosphorous and iron.
  • Can be used in homemade low-fat diets as it is more available in grocery stores.
Rabbit and venison can be found in all food forms, but for allergies we recommend raw frozen and canned.  Several brands such as Instinct and Stella and Chewys have a freeze-dried version with the exact same ingredients as the raw frozen.  These work well crumbled into treats or as an initial introduction as you transition your pet's diet. 

There are also a few brands of rabbit and venison treats.  Remember though, a lot of dry foods and treats may contain venison or rabbit, but they are still loaded with starchy carbohydrates which won't give your pet the same great results as using a low carbohydrate raw frozen diet.