Kingsbrook Animal Hospital's Blog: 2011

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Stumpers is a 4-5 year old Male cat that was found as a stray here in the Frederick area. A gentleman brought him in because the cat had been hanging around his house for the past 6 weeks. The gentleman recently decided to try and keep the cat, so he wanted him to be examined by a Veterinarian. Upon examination, it was found out that the cat had a microchip. We were able to contact the owner who had said she has moved out of the area. Stumpers (previously named Amigo) was supposed to be staying in a temporary home with a friend until finding something permanent. Unfortunately he had gotten out, but now has made himself comfortable wandering around someone's house. The wonderful gentleman that brought him in was happy to give him a forever home. This is one lucky cat! As you can see, he is extra special because he as extra toes! That's where his new name came from :)

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

The Doctors and Staff of Kingsbrook Animal Hospital would like to wish your family a very, Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Cold Weather Tips

Brrrr—it's cold outside! The following guidelines will help you protect your companion animals when the mercury dips.

Keep your cat inside. Outdoors, felines can freeze, become lost or be stolen, injured or killed. Cats who are allowed to stray are exposed to infectious diseases, including rabies, from other cats, dogs and wildlife.

During the winter, outdoor cats sometimes sleep under the hoods of cars. When the motor is started, the cat can be injured or killed by the fan belt. If there are outdoor cats in your area, bang loudly on the car hood before starting the engine to give the cat a chance to escape.

Never let your dog off the leash on snow or ice, especially during a snowstorm, dogs can lose their scent and easily become lost. More dogs are lost during the winter than during any other season, so make sure yours always wears ID tags.

Thoroughly wipe off your dog's legs and stomach when he comes in out of the sleet, snow or ice. He can ingest salt, antifreeze or other potentially dangerous chemicals while licking his paws, and his paw pads may also bleed from snow or encrusted ice.

Never shave your dog down to the skin in winter, as a longer coat will provide more warmth. When you bathe your dog in the colder months, be sure to completely dry him before taking him out for a walk. Own a short-haired breed? Consider getting him a coat or sweater with a high collar or turtleneck with coverage from the base of the tail to the belly. For many dogs, this is regulation winter wear.

Never leave your dog or cat alone in a car during cold weather. A car can act as a refrigerator in the winter, holding in the cold and causing the animal to freeze to death.

Puppies do not tolerate the cold as well as adult dogs, and may be difficult to housebreak during the winter. If your puppy appears to be sensitive to the weather, you may opt to paper-train him inside. If your dog is sensitive to the cold due to age, illness or breed type, take him outdoors only to relieve himself.

Does your dog spend a lot of time engaged in outdoor activities? Increase his supply of food, particularly protein, to keep him, and his fur, in tip-top shape.

Like coolant, antifreeze is a lethal poison for dogs and cats. Be sure to thoroughly clean up any spills from your vehicle, and consider using products that contain propylene glycol rather than ethylene glycol. Visit the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center more information.

Make sure your companion animal has a warm place to sleep, off the floor and away from all drafts. A cozy dog or cat bed with a warm blanket or pillow is perfect.

Download the ASPCA's PetWeather iPhone and Android App for free. The ASPCA'sPetWeather App lets you know at a glance what kind of weather your furry friend can expect for your location, and will alert you if weather conditions make it uncomfortable or even dangerous for your pets to be outside.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

World's Oldest Living Dog Dies at Age 26

Pusuke, listed by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s oldest-living dog, died in Japan. He was 26 years old — or somewhere between 117 and 185 in “human years,” according to various calculations. There is no official method for converting dog years to human years.

The dog’s owner, Yumiko Shinohara, said the male cross-breed died at Sakura in the Tochigi prefecture, north of Tokyo, according to the Kyodo news agency.

Pusuke was reportedly eating well and staying active until Monday, when he lost his appetite and had difficulty breathing. Pusuke died peacefully, minutes after his owner returned home from a walk.

“I think (Pusuke) waited for me to come home,” she said, according to Kyodo.

Born in April of 1985, Pusuke was recognized last December as the world’s oldest-living dog.

The oldest-known dog on record, according to Guinness, was an Australian cattle dog named Bluey, who lived to the ripe old age of 29 years and five months before it was put down in November 1939.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Pet Donations

Thank you so much to Megan Shankle for providing us with a "2011 Pet Food Drive" donation box. Donations can be made in the form of: dog/cat food (any brand), cat litter, new dog/cat toy, dog/cat treats, small animal (Guinea Pigs, Rabbits) food, and small animal bedding.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

New Candle Scents

Are your furry friends causing a less then pleasant smell in your household? We have the answer! Come by and pick up one of our Pet Odor Exterminator Candles. We have some new scents including Mint Chocolate, Caramel Apple, Evergreen and Berries, and Sugared Cranberries! Pumpkin Spice is a returning scent and proves to be one of our client favorites :) These candles are perfect for the holidays, especially when having company. So hurry in and get yours today before they are all gone!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Local Frederick Artist Creates Unique Dog Themed Jewelry

Looking for a unique gift? Local artist and KAH client, Louanne Welgoss, just created a new line of dog themed jewelry available at Two Paws Up.

P&G Voluntarily Recalls One Production Lot of Dry Dog Food

PR Newswire

CINCINNATI, Dec. 6, 2011

CINCINNATI, Dec. 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Procter & Gamble Company (P&G) has voluntarily retrieved a single production lot of dry dog food due to aflatoxin levels that were detected above the acceptable limit. This product has already been retrieved from store shelves. No illnesses have been reported in association with this production lot to date, and no other Iams pet food products are involved.

Product affected by this announcement:

Product Name: Iams ProActive Health Smart Puppy dry dog food
with Use By or Expiration Dates of February 5 or February 6, 2013

7.0 lb bag
Code Date 12784177I6
UPC Code 1901402305

8.0 lb bag
Code Date 12794177D2
UPC Code 1901410208

17.5 lb bag
Code Date 12794177K1

UPC Code 1901401848

The affected product lot was distributed to a limited number of retailers located in the eastern United States (AL, CT, DE, FL, GA, LA, MD, ME, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NY, PA, SC, VA). These retailers have already removed this product from store shelves. No other dry dog food, dry cat food, dog or cat canned food, biscuits/treats or supplements are affected by this announcement.

While no health effects related to this product have been reported, P&G retrieved this product as a precautionary measure. Consumers who purchased the product listed should stop using the product and discard it and contact Iams at the number below for a replacement voucher. Aflatoxin is a naturally occurring by-product from the growth of Aspergillus flavus and can be harmful to pets if consumed in significant quantities. Pets which have consumed this product and exhibit symptoms of illness including sluggishness or lethargy combined with a reluctance to eat, vomiting, yellowish tint to the eyes or gums, or diarrhea should be seen by a veterinarian.

For further information or a product replacement or refund contact P&G toll-free at 866-908-1569 (Monday – Friday, 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM EST) or

About Procter & Gamble

Four billion times a day, P&G brands touch the lives of people around the world. The company has one of the strongest portfolios of trusted, quality, leadership brands, including Pampers®, Tide®, Ariel®, Always®, Whisper®, Pantene®, Mach3®, Bounty®, Dawn®, Gain®, Pringles®, Charmin®, Downy®, Lenor®, Iams®, Crest®, Oral-B®, Duracell®, Olay®, Head & Shoulders®, Wella®, Gillette®, Braun® and Fusion®. The P&G community includes approximately 135,000 employees working in about 80 countries worldwide. Please visit for the latest news and in-depth information about P&G and its brands.

SOURCE Procter & Gamble Company

Winter Care for Canines

Winter's cold air brings many concerns for responsible dog owners. Keep the following precautions in mind:

Don't leave your dog outside in the cold for long periods of time. Wind chill makes days colder than actual temperature readings. Be attentive to your dog's body temperature, and limit its time outdoors.

Adequate shelter is a necessity. Keep your dog warm, dry and away from drafts. Tiles and uncarpeted areas may become extremely cold, so make sure to place blankets and pads on floors in these areas.

Be extra careful when walking or playing with your dog near frozen lakes, rivers or ponds. Your dog could slip or jump in and get seriously injured.

Groom your dog regularly. Your dog needs a well-groomed coat to keep properly insulated. Short- or coarse-haired dogs may get extra cold, so consider a sweater or coat. Long-haired dogs should have excess hair around the toes and foot pads trimmed to ease snow removal and cleaning. If you do the trimming, take care not to cut the pads or other delicate area of the foot.

Feed your dog additional calories if it spends a lot of time outdoors or is a working animal. It takes more energy in the winter to keep body temperature regulated, so additional calories are necessary.

Towel or blow-dry your dog if it gets wet from rain or snow. It is important to dry and clean its paws, too. This helps avoid tiny cuts and cracked pads. A little petroleum jelly may soften the pads and prevent further cracking.

Don't leave your dog alone in a car. If the car engine is left on, the carbon monoxide will endanger your dog's life. If the engine is off, the temperature in the car will get too cold.

Health Tips

Dogs cannot talk to us when they are sick. As a responsible dog owner, it is important to pay special attention to your dog's well-being during the winter season. Remember the following health concerns:

Antifreeze, which often collects on driveways and roadways, is highly poisonous. Although it smells and tastes good to your dog, it can be lethal.

Rock salt, used to melt ice on sidewalks, may irritate footpads. Be sure to rinse and dry your dog's feet after a walk.

Provide plenty of fresh water. Your dog is just as likely to get dehydrated in the winter as in the summer. Snow is not a satisfactory substitute for water.
Frostbite is your dog's winter hazard. To prevent frostbite on its ears, tail and feet, don't leave your dog outdoors for too long.

Be very careful of supplemental heat sources. Fireplaces and portable heaters can severely burn your dog. Make sure all fireplaces have screens, and keep portable heaters out of reach.

Like people, dogs seem to be more susceptible to illness in the winter. Take your dog to a veterinarian if you see any suspicious symptoms.

Don't use over-the-counter medications on your dog without consulting a veterinarian.

Holiday Safeguards

The winter season brings lots of fun holiday festivities, but pet-owners should keep in mind the following special precautions:

The holidays are not ideal for introducing a pet into your family. New puppies and dogs require extra attention and a stable environment, which the holiday season doesn't permit. Also, a puppy is not a toy or gift that can be returned. Instead, the AKC suggests giving a gift representative of the dog to come, such as a toy, a leash, or a bed.

Holly, mistletoe and poinsettia plants are pet poisons! Make sure they are kept in places your dog cannot reach.

Review holiday gifts for dogs to make sure they are safe. Items such as plastic toys and small rawhide sticks may be dangerous.

Remove holiday lights from lower branches of your tree. They may get very hot and burn dogs.

Watch out for electrical cords. Pets often try to chew them and may get badly shocked or electrocuted. Place wires out of reach.

Avoid using glass ornaments. They break easily and may cut a dog's feet and mouth.

Refrain from using edible ornaments. Your dog may knock the tree over in an attempt to eat them. Also, commercial ornaments may contain paint or toxins in the preservatives.

Whether your tree is live or artificial, both kinds of needles are sharp and indigestible. Don't leave your dog unattended in the room with the tree.

Tinsel is dangerous for dogs. It may obstruct circulation and, if swallowed, block the intestines.

Alcohol and chocolate are toxic for dogs, even in small amounts. Keep unhealthy, sweet treats and seasonal goodies out of reach.

The holiday season is a stressful time for dogs. Try to keep a normal schedule during all the excitement.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Meet Rory

Meet Rory! He is a 1-2 yr old DSH. He is Veterinary Assistant, Nicolette's, newest addition to her family. He was found in Frederick by one of the techs at KAH as a stray. He must have spent time with lots of families because of how friendly and personable he was. Nicolette couldn't resist, so she took him home. He has such a personality and is quite curious. He loves to get into the trash can, break the blinds and go fishing in the fish tank! But it's all accompanied by lots of snuggles and kitty kisses, so it's worth it :)

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Preventing Litterbox Problems

Keeping your cat's litter box up to his standards is very important. The following suggestions should keep your cat from "thinking outside the box."

Location, location, location
Most people tend to place the litter box in an out-of-the-way spot to minimize odor and prevent cat litter from being tracked throughout the house. But, if the litter box ends up in the basementnext to an appliance or on a cold cement floor,your cat may be less than pleased.

So you may have to compromise.

Keep the litter box in a spot that gives your cat some privacy yet is also conveniently located. If the box is too hard to get to, especially for a kitten or an elderly cat, he just may not use it.
Avoid placing litter boxes next to noisy or heat-radiating appliances, like the furnace or the washing machine. The noise can make a cat nervous, while the warmth of a dryer or furnace can magnify the litter box smell, which could make him stay away from it.
Put the box far away from his food and water bowls. Cats don't like that smell too near their food and may not use the box.
Place at least one litter box on each level of your house. That way your cat has options if access to his primary box is blocked (the basement door is closed or your dinner party has him holed up in the bedroom.) If you have more than one cat, provide litter boxes in several locations so that one cat can't ambush another cat using the litter box.
If you keep the litter box in a closet or a bathroom, be sure the door is wedged open from both sides to prevent your cat from being trapped inside or locked out. Depending on the location, you might consider cutting a hole in a closet door and adding a pet door.
Pick of the litter
Research has shown that most cats prefer fine-grained litters, presumably because they have a softer feel. The new scoopable (clumping) litters usually have finer grains than the typical clay litter and are very popular because they really keep down the odor. But high-quality, dust-free clay litters are fairly small-grained and may be perfectly acceptable to your cat.

There are several different types of cat litter on the market. The most popular ones are: traditional clay litter; scooping/clumping litter; crystal based/silica gel litter; and plant-derived/bio-degradable litter.

If your cat has previously been an outdoor one and prefers dirt, you can keep him out of your houseplants placing medium sized rocks on top of the soil and/or by mixing some potting soil with your regular litter. A cat who rejects all types of commercial litters may be quite happy with sand. Once you find a litter your cat likes, stick with it. Switching litters constantly could result in your cat not using the litter box.

Smelling like a rose
Many people used scented litter to mask litter box odors, but those scents can put off many cats. For the same reason, it's not a good idea to place a room deodorizer or air freshener near the litter box.

A thin layer of baking soda placed on the bottom of the box will help absorb odors without repelling your cat. And if you keep the box scrupulously clean, it shouldn't smell.

If you find the litter box odor offensive, your cat, with his keen sense of smell, probably finds it even more offensive and won't want to go there.

How many?
The general rule of thumb is one box for each cat plus one more. Then none of them will ever be prevented from eliminating in the litter box because it's already occupied.

It's not possible to designate a personal litter box for each cat in your household, as cats may use any litter box that's available. That means a cat may occasionally refuse to use a litter box after another cat has been in it. In this case, you'll need to keep all of the litter boxes extremely clean, and you might even need to add additional boxes. However, it's best not to place al the boxes in one location because your cats will think of them as one big box and ambushing another cat will still be possible.

Under cover
Some people prefer to provide their cats with a covered litter box, but doing so may introduce some potential problems. To discover which type your cat prefers, you may want to experiment by offering both types at first.

Some cats, especially those who are timid or like privacy. may prefer a covered litter box. Others will not, especially if it's not clean. Covered boxes can decrease the amount of litter that flies from the box when your cat buries his business.

Pros and cons:

You may forget to clean the litter box as frequently as you should, because the dirty litter is "out of sight, out of mind."
A covered litter box traps odors inside, so you'll need to clean it more often than an open one. A dirty, covered litter box is to your cat what a port-a-potty is to you!
It may not allow a large cat sufficient room to turn around, scratch, dig or position himself in the way he wants.
It may make it easier for another cat to lay in wait and "ambush" the user as he exits the box.
Other types of litter boxes
There are wide variety of litter boxes on the market today. Keep in mind that some fancy litter box innovations are for the owner's convenience, not the cat's. In fact, some of these features may actually turn your cat off. It's really best to keep it simple—a basic box, litter, and a scoop.

Keeping it clean
To meet the needs of the most discriminating cat, you should scoop feces out of the litter box daily. How often you actually change (replace) the litter depends on the number of cats you have, the number of litter boxes, and the type of litter you use.

Twice a week is a general guideline for replacing clay litter, but depending on the circumstances, you may need to replace it every other day or only once a week.

If you clean the litter box daily, you might only need to change clumping litter every two to three weeks. If you notice an odor or if much of the litter is wet or clumped, it's time for a change.

Scrub the box every time you change the litter. Use detergent mild dish liquid to clean it, as products with ammonia or citrus oils can turn a cat off, and some cleaning products are toxic to cats.

Liner notes
Box liners are strictly a convenience for the owner; supposedly, the liner can be gathered together and tied just like a garbage bag, but the truth is that most cats shred it to bits while scratching in the box. However, it might work if your cat doesn't work too hard to bury his waste.

Depth of litter
Some people think that the more litter they put in the box, the less often they'll have to clean it, but that's a mistake. Most cats won't use litter that's more than about two inches deep. In fact, some long-haired cats actually prefer less litter and a smooth, slick surface, such as the bottom of the litter box. Adding extra litter isn't a a substitute for scooping and scrubbing.

"Litter Training" cats
There's really no such thing as "littertraining" a cat in the same way one would housetrain a dog. You actually don't need to teach your cat what to do with a litter box; instinct will generally take over. You do need to provide an acceptable, accessible litter box, using the suggestions above.

It's not necessary to take your cat to the litter box and move her paws back and forth in the litter. In fact, we don't recommend it, as such an unpleasant experience is likely to make her afraid of the litter box and you.

If you move, however, you will need to show your cat where the box is, though his sensitive nose will probably find it first.

Solving problems
If your cat begins to go to the bathroom outside the litter box, your first call should always be to your veterinarian. Many medical conditions can cause a change in a cat's litter box habits. If your veterinarian examines your cat and gives him a clean bill of health, your cat may have a behavior problem that needs to be solved. See ways to solve litter box problems here »

Punishment is not the answer, nor is banishing your cat outdoors. For long-standing or complex situations, contact an animal-behavior specialist who has experience working with cats.

The Humane Society of the United States

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Polydactyl Cats

Poly- what?!?

The term “polydactyl” means many toes, it is a genetic mutation among felines that gives them extra toes on the front feet and sometimes even on the back. Normally, cats have 4 front toes and one declaw on the inside of their leg, a little bit above their toes. A polydactyl cat can appear to have mitten’s by having several extra dewclaws. Some cats can have 7-8 toes on each front foot!

Famous polydactyl cats live in Key West, Florida at the Ernest Hemmingway Museum. He brought a polydactyl cat to Florida, upon his ship, and a colony has been there ever since. Currently the museum has about 60 resident cats, about half of which are polydactyl.

For more info on the Hemmingway museum and their cats, visit:

“Apollo” is a polydactyl kitten that was recently adopted from Frederick County Animal Control by one of our clients. He has 7 toes on each front foot and 5 toes on each back foot- a total of 24 toes in all (6 extra)!!!

Owners Paul and Michelle Contant of Ontario, Canada own the Guinness World record holder polydactyl cat. “Jake”has 28 toes, with 7 on each paw, as counted by a veterinarian on 24 September 2002.

For more info and pictures of polydactyl cats, visit:

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Subtle Can Be Significant

If you share your home with an older per, never ignore that tiny voice telling you "something isn't right." If you suspect something-anything-is wrong with a pet over age seven, have it checked out. Recently, I saw a 12-year-old dog that "hadn't been feeling well for the past couple of weeks." Sadly, by the time the owners finally listened to that inner voice, it was too late. Their dog was now bleeding internally from a ruptured splenic cancer. Emergency blood transfusions and surgery failed to save the dog's life. While I don't fault the owners-there was nothing obviously wrong with their pet and they loved him dearly-I can't be helped but be nagged by "what if?" What if I'd been able to diagnose the tumor before it ruptured? What if I'd performed surgery before it had lost over half it's blood volume? I'll never know, but I can be more digilent in telling my clients not to ignore even the most seemingly insignificant signs. The best news you can ever hear is, "It's nothing to worry about."

Fetch Spring/Summer 2010

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Start a pet savings account

In today’s economy, the cost of living is expensive. With gas costing nearly $4 per gallon, budgeting household expenses is a must. We love our pets and want the very best for them, but veterinary care can be expensive.

The solution: Open a savings account for your pets routine expenses. Of course, illnesses and accidients cannot be planned for, but by having some money set aside for your pets annual care, you won’t be cringing when that reminder card comes in the mail.

By saving a relatively small amount of money monthly, you will be prepared for pets’ annual exam and prevention.

Preventative care may seem expensive, but in the long run, it can save your pet from illness and discomfort and ultimately your wallet. Sick visits, medications, supportive care, surgery, and hospitilization can be 3-4 times as much as routine care. Plus, you want your pet to be healthy, happy, and pain-free.

For example, a routine dental cleaning under anesthesia is around $340. The bulk of that price is anesthesia. Pets won’t hold their mouth open so we can clean their teth well and take a good look, so anesthesia is imparative. Pets are sedated, intubated, and maintained on general anesthesia. IV fluids are aministed to support their blood pressue and flush their kidneys. They are also monitored by a registered veterinary technician during and after the procedure.

It may seem like a lot to go through to clean their teeth, but dental disease can be very painful,cause infections in other organs, and extractions and dental radiographs are costly compared to a routine scaling, polish, and flouride application (about $100).

An average annual veterinary visit for a healthy,indoor adult (1-8 years of age) cat plus the year’s supply of Frontline to prevent fleas and ticks is about $315. Assuming you are unable to brush your kitties teeth daily (most people aren’t), kitty may need a dental cleaning too. That’s a total of about $655. For a lot of people, that’s a large sum. But broken down and saved monthly, that’s only $55 per month or less that $14 per week! Only $2 per day! I bet most of us could manage to cut $2 per day out of our budget. Just packing your lunch and making your coffee at home could save you as much as $10 per day!

Now the doggie example. Dogs can easily be infected with heartworms, intestinal parasites, and other diseases like Lyme disease and Leptosporosis that kitties don’t get.

So, they require more vaccines, blood tests and preventative products. An average annual veterinary visit for a healthy, medium/large (30-60 lbs) adult (1-8 years old, depending on breed) dog plus a year’s supply of Interceptor heartworm prevention Frontline flea/tick prevention is around $500. (Keep in mind that the DHPP and Rabies vaccines are good for 3 years, so at age 2,3,5,6 they will not need these vaccines).If your pup also needs his teeth cleaned, that’s a total of $840. Saved over a year, that’s only $70 per month or less that $18 per week.

Not every dog will need their teeth cleaned anually, while some dogs need them cleaned twice per year (usually small breeds or dogs like Greyhounds that are predisposed to dental disease). Dogs have larger mouths and teeth and may tolerate brushing more. Brushing your dogs teeth daily with a pet-approved, flouride-free toothpaste, giving them chewy bones like rawhide, CET chews, Greenies, and feeding special diets like Science Diet T/D, that is formulated to help remove tartar build-up, will keep teeth cleaner, longer.These products are great for the pre-molars and molars that dogs chew with, but the K9’s and incisors that aren’t used for chewing will still accumulate tartar.

We love our pets! They are part of our families and their healthcare is just as important as it always has been. In this tough economy, planning for the future is the best thing we can do ofset annual large bills.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Pasture Raised Turkeys

"Over the past several years, consumers have become increasingly
interested in knowing more about their food. Is it locally produced?
Were any pesticides used on the crops? How was the livestock treated
and what sort of diets did the animals receive? Knowing more about
food production represents a healthy step towards becoming
better-informed consumers.

With the holiday season approaching, families might be interested in
continuing this trend by ordering their turkey, goose or other fowl
from one of the many local Maryland farms that raise these animals.
Rather than buying a shrink-wrapped bird with a plastic thermometer
button jammed into the breast, families can head out to the farm and
see where their bird was raised."

There are various places to purchase locally grown, pasture raised
turkeys. Many local farms emphasize health and sustainability and use
no hormones, antibiotics or added chemicals.

Visit the following websites for more info..

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Halloween Candy Drive for our troops has been a success. With the help of our generous clients, our staff has collected 123 pounds of candy. It has all been boxed and is ready to be shipped to our service men and women stationed overseas. Thank You!!!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Famous people and their famous doggie names.........

Looking to name your new puppy and think you'd like to brand your new loved one just like your favorite celebrity?

Ben Afleck/Martha Stewart
Christina Aguilera/Chewy & Cocoa
Clay Aiken/Raleigh
Jessica Alba/Nancy & Sid
Jennifer Aniston/Norman
Lucille Ball/Tinker Toy & Whoopee
Mischa Barton/Charlie
Halle Berry/Bumper & Petey
Selma Blair/Wink
Orlando Bloom/Essa & Sidi
Marlon Brando/Schlubber
Adam Brody/Penny Lane
Sandra Bullock/Poppy
Mariah Carey/Jackson P. Mutley
Kevin Costner/Rosalita
Courtney Cox/Hopper & Hardy
Tom Cruise/Joseph
Phyllis Diller/Phearless
Hilary Duff/Chiquita & Lola
Jake Gyllenhaal/Atticus & Boo Radley
Jennifer Love Hewitt/Charlie
Paris Hilton/Tinkerbell & Bambi
Star Jones/Pinky
Ashley Judd/Buttermilk
Diane Lane/Milo
David Letterman/Bob & Stan
Liberace/Baby Boy & Lady Di
Lindsay Lohan/Chloe
Eva Longoria/Jinxy
Courtney Love/Lloyd
Demi Moore/Louie
Mary Kate Olsen/Luca
Jack Osborne/Lola
Kelly Osborne/Boris & Piglet
Brad Pitt/Purty & Saudi
Natalie Portman/Charlie
Nicole Richie/Honey Child & Cleopatra
Don Rickles/Clown & Joker
Mickey Rourke/Loki
Ashlee Simpson/Blondie
Jessica Simpson/Daisy
Anna Nicole Smith/Mommie
Britney Spears/Bit Bit
Tori Spelling/Mimi La Rue
Martha Stewart/Teeney & Weenie
Liv Tyler/Neal & Mylo
Naomi Watts/Bob & Chicken
Venus Williams/Jackie
Reese Witherspoon/Frank Sinatra


Doris Day/Autie Murphy, Autumn, Barney Miller, Biggest, Bobo, Bubbles, Bucky, Charlie, Chipper, Daisy, Daisy-June, Dillon, El Tigre, Heineken, Honey, Muffy, Rudy, Schatzie, Snowy, Tiger, Tiny, Trixie & Varmit

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Frederick County Humane Society’s First Annual K9K will take placeSaturday, November 12, 2011, at Baker Park, in historic downtown Frederick. Proceeds will help support affordable spay/neuter and rabies vaccines for Frederick County companion animals. The event will be held rain or shine at 8am and registration starts at 7am. You can even participate with your dog. (They must be leashed and have proof of current rabies vaccination.) The first 150 registrants are guaranteed a t-shirt.

Visit for more information and to pre-register for the event!

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Andre, Sea Turtle Nearly Killed by Boat's Propeller, Returns Safely to Atlantic off Florida.

They called him Andre -- an endangered green sea turtle that washed up in 2010 on a sandbar on Juno Beach in Florida, nearly dead after a boat ran him over with its propeller and tore huge gashes in his shell.

Today, healed by a team that included veterinarians, a biotech company and even an orthodontist, Andre was safely returned to the Atlantic.

Eileen, Melissa and Jen got to meet Andre at a recent trip to West Palm.

View the full story at:

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Hiking with your dog

With the wonderful fall weather in full swing, take your pup out and about to enjoy some fresh and burn off that extra energy!

Several state parks in the area welcome dogs from Oct 1st-April.

Visit the website below for more info:

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Halloween Safety Tips

Halloween can be a fun time of year for the whole family - even your dog. However, there are also many potential dangers and sources of stress for your dog. Just remember to keep your dog safe from these Halloween hazards.

Halloween Candy and Other Treats

Remember that human treats are not usually good for dogs! Candy - especially chocolate - can be extremely toxic to your dog. Artificially sweetened candy, gum and other goodies may also contain xylitol, a highly toxic substance. Dogs may also ingest food wrappers, causing a risk of choking, upset stomach or gastrointestinal blockage. Various party snacks can be too salty and may contain ingredients that can poison your dog. Alcoholic beverages and dogs do not mix - they pose a significant risk of severe illness or even death! Keep all of these "human goodies" far out of your dog's reach. If you are not positive that you can keep your dog away from these hazards, then consider confining your pet to another area of your home during the festivities. Keeping appropriate dog treats around for your dog can be a great idea, but remember not to overfeed. Sliced carrots or apples (hold the caramel) can be tasty and healthy snack alternatives for people and dogs alike!

Halloween Decorations

Your dog is bound to be curious about new objects around the house, and that includes Halloween decorations. Be sure decorations are not in areas where your dog could ingest them or bump into them. Power cords trip your dog or lead to electrical shock if chewed. Be careful with the placement of jack-o-lanterns - have you ever seen a dog eat a whole pumpkin? It is not pretty! Also, candles can be knocked over, potentially burning your dog and/or starting a fire. Other decorations can be eaten or broken, causing serious harm to your dog. Have fun and decorate - just think about your dog first!

Trick-or-Treaters and other Guests

Though many dogs love visitors, some can become fearful of strangers. Many dogs will even be afraid of people they know if those people are in costumes. Plus, constant ringing of the doorbell might get your dog over-excited or very stressed out. Think about your dog's typical reaction to visitors and take extra precautions for Halloween. Keep your dog at a distance when greeting trick-or-treaters by putting up an baby gate or confining her to another area of the home. When inviting guests into your home, introduce them to your dog in a positive manner. If your dog seems afraid of guests in costumes, remove her from the situation calmly. During parties and loud gatherings, your dog might do best in another area of your home unless she is used to these types of events and has done well in the past.

Halloween Costumes for Dogs

Some dogs really enjoy getting dressed in costumes- they might ham it up and revel in the attention. Other dogs can become scared or uncomfortable in clothing of any type. If you want to dress your dog up, start simple and see how she handles it. If she does not like it, then don't push the issue. Try a Halloween bandanna or collar instead. If your dog does seem to enjoy getting dressed up, be certain you choose a costume that fits comfortably. If it is too tight, it could cut off circulation or cause sores to develop. Loose-fitting outfits can trip your dog or get caught on objects around the house. Because of these potential dangers, never leave your dog unattended in the costume. She could become injured or may ingest parts of the costume and choke, become sick, or develop gastrointestinal blockage.

Outdoor Dangers

I personally feel that unsupervised dogs are best kept indoors year-round, though some dogs will do fine living outdoors alone. However, the rules are different during the Halloween season! It is extremely crucial that you keep your dog indoors unless directly supervised. Sadly, there are cruel people who have twisted ideas of fun this time of year - and your dog can be the victim. Though it is more widely know that black cats are targeted during Halloween, any household pet can be at risk and MUST be kept indoors!

Your dog can be part of Halloween fun if you play it safe. As always, follow common dog safety rules: be certain that your dog wears current identification at all times, keep your dog on a leash when outdoors, and keep her safe from potentially dangerous situations. Have fun, be safe and have a happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

No Scaredy Cats This Halloween: Top 10 Safety Tips for Pet Parents

Attention, animal lovers, it's almost the spookiest night of the year! The ASPCA recommends taking some common sense precautions this Halloween to keep you and your pet saying "trick or treat!" all the way to November 1.

1. No tricks, no treats: That bowl of candy is for trick-or-treaters, not for Scruffy and Fluffy. Chocolate in all forms—especially dark or baking chocolate—can be very dangerous for dogs and cats. Candies containing the artificial sweetener xylitol can also cause problems. If you do suspect your pet has ingested something toxic, please call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435.

2. Popular Halloween plants such as pumpkins and decorative corn are considered to be relatively nontoxic, but they can produce stomach upset in pets who nibble on them.

3. Wires and cords from electric lights and other decorations should be kept out of reach of your pets. If chewed, your pet might suffer cuts or burns, or receive a possibly life-threatening electrical shock.

4. A carved pumpkin certainly is festive, but do exercise caution if you choose to add a candle. Pets can easily knock a lit pumpkin over and cause a fire. Curious kittens especially run the risk of getting burned or singed by candle flames.

5. Dress-up can be a big mess-up for some pets. Please don't put your dog or cat in a costume UNLESS you know he or she loves it (yup, a few pets are real hams!). For pets who prefer their “birthday suits,” however, wearing a costume may cause undue stress.

6. If you do dress up your pet, make sure the costume isn't annoying or unsafe. It should not constrict the animal's movement or hearing, or impede his ability to breathe, bark or meow. Also, be sure to try on costumes before the big night. If your pet seems distressed, allergic or shows abnormal behavior, consider letting him go au naturale or donning a festive bandana.

7. Take a closer look at your pet’s costume and make sure it does not have small, dangling or easily chewed-off pieces that he could choke on. Also, ill-fitting outfits can get twisted on external objects or your pet, leading to injury.

8. All but the most social dogs and cats should be kept in a separate room away from the front door during peak trick-or-treating hours. Too many strangers can be scary and stressful for pets.

9. When opening the door for trick-or-treaters, take care that your cat or dog doesn't dart outside.

10. IDs, please! Always make sure your dog or cat has proper identification. If for any reason your pet escapes and becomes lost, a collar and tags and/or a microchip can be a lifesaver, increaing the chances that he or she will be returned to you

_ASPCA Halloween Pet Safety Tips.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Halloween Candy Drive for the Troops

It's almost time for halloween & and if you are anything like us, you are troubled by the same thing year after year ..... leftover halloween candy. Well, we are here to help! Just bring by any leftover candy & drop it off at our office between Oct 31 and Nov 10 & we will have that candy shipped to our US service men & women stationed overseas.

You're Welcome ;-)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Trick or Treat

Halloween can be a fun time of year for the whole family - even your dog. However, there are also many potential dangers and sources of stress for your dog. Just remember to keep your dog safe from these Halloween hazards.

Halloween Candy and Other Treats

Remember that human treats are not usually good for dogs! Candy - especially chocolate - can be extremely toxic to your dog. Artificially sweetened candy, gum and other goodies may also contain xylitol, a highly toxic substance. Dogs may also ingest food wrappers, causing a risk of choking, upset stomach or gastrointestinal blockage. Various party snacks can be too salty and may contain ingredients that can poison your dog. Alcoholic beverages and dogs do not mix - they pose a significant risk of severe illness or even death! Keep all of these "human goodies" far out of your dog's reach. If you are not positive that you can keep your dog away from these hazards, then consider confining your pet to another area of your home during the festivities. Keeping appropriate dog treats around for your dog can be a great idea, but remember not to overfeed. Sliced carrots or apples (hold the caramel) can be tasty and healthy snack alternatives for people and dogs alike!

Halloween Decorations

Your dog is bound to be curious about new objects around the house, and that includes Halloween decorations. Be sure decorations are not in areas where your dog could ingest them or bump into them. Power cords trip your dog or lead to electrical shock if chewed. Be careful with the placement of jack-o-lanterns - have you ever seen a dog eat a whole pumpkin? It is not pretty! Also, candles can be knocked over, potentially burning your dog and/or starting a fire. Other decorations can be eaten or broken, causing serious harm to your dog. Have fun and decorate - just think about your dog first!

Trick-or-Treaters and other Guests

Though many dogs love visitors, some can become fearful of strangers. Many dogs will even be afraid of people they know if those people are in costumes. Plus, constant ringing of the doorbell might get your dog over-excited or very stressed out. Think about your dog's typical reaction to visitors and take extra precautions for Halloween. Keep your dog at a distance when greeting trick-or-treaters by putting up an baby gate or confining her to another area of the home. When inviting guests into your home, introduce them to your dog in a positive manner. If your dog seems afraid of guests in costumes, remove her from the situation calmly. During parties and loud gatherings, your dog might do best in another area of your home unless she is used to these types of events and has done well in the past.

Halloween Costumes for Dogs

Some dogs really enjoy getting dressed in costumes- they might ham it up and revel in the attention. Other dogs can become scared or uncomfortable in clothing of any type. If you want to dress your dog up, start simple and see how she handles it. If she does not like it, then don't push the issue. Try a Halloween bandanna or collar instead. If your dog does seem to enjoy getting dressed up, be certain you choose a costume that fits comfortably. If it is too tight, it could cut off circulation or cause sores to develop. Loose-fitting outfits can trip your dog or get caught on objects around the house. Because of these potential dangers, never leave your dog unattended in the costume. She could become injured or may ingest parts of the costume and choke, become sick, or develop gastrointestinal blockage.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Hidden Chihuahua

Can you locate Lilly?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Howl-o-ween Costume Contest

Does your pet like banana splits? Is there another costume that is his or her favorite? KAH is having a Howl-o-ween costume contest. E-mail your photo (one photo per pet, please) to All entries will be placed in an online gallery and each staff member will place a vote for their favorite costumed pet. Prizes will be awarded as follows: $50 KAH credit for first place, $25 KAH credit for second and third place. Deadline for entries is Thursday, October 27th and the winners will be announced on Howl-o-ween. Good luck!

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Pet obesity is currently one of the top health concerns for our pets, and a quick assessment of optimal body weight could be the start to lengthening your pet's life.
Here are some tips to tell if your pet tips the scale, and what to do about it.

Working with your vet to rule out other medical problems is the first step. While some drugs and some disease conditions (i.e. hypothyroidism) may cause a pet to be overweight, more often obesity is caused by overfeeding and high calorie foods. Your vet will help you devise a diet and exercise plan for your pet to get on the track to health and fitness.

1. Pet has lost his/her "figure"
When viewed from above, your pet's back should show some gentle curves: a gentle dip after the ribs (waist area), a gradual slope to the base of the tail. When viewed from the side, you should see a "tucked up" area just before the hind legs (not a flat line along the base of the belly). Your pet may have a haircoat the prevents easy viewing, but gently running your hands along the top outline of your pet should reveal these natural curves.

2. You can no longer feel your pet's ribs
With gentle fingertip pressure, you should be able to feel your pet's ribs easily. If you can only feel cushioned body wall, your pet is carrying too much weight.

3. Your pet is constantly searching for food/begging for treats
A pet who is always on the lookout for food versus a pet who is comfortable "free feeding" is more likely to be overweight. If possible, it is best to offer food free choice (always available). This is not always possible in mixed pet households and with pets who are always craving their next meal, but it will usually encourage a healthier outlook on food consumption. Restricting high calorie treats is also a good way to reduce weight.

4. Your pet is uninterested in, or unable to exercise and keep up with you
Pets of optimum body weight and in good health are usually up for a brisk walk or a game of Frisbee or catch anytime their owner is willing. Pets who are overweight may have the intention, but are soon panting excessively or taking frequent rest breaks just to keep up. Carrying extra body weight can lead to extra pressure on the joints, heart, and lungs. Additionally, other organs, such as liver and pancreas can be affected; leading to diseases such as Diabetes Mellitus.

5. Your pet suffers more from the summer heat than other animals
In addition to the body having to work harder just to move around, overweight pets overheat easily. Fat is a great insulator. This condition is known as "heat intolerance", and will put overweight animals at greater risk for heat stroke.

6. Your pet is deemed to be at greater risk for anesthesia and surgery
Some drugs are absorbed into the fat layers. This means that more drug is required to induce/maintain anesthesia than an animal of normal weight and it takes longer for the anesthesia to wear off. If the pet is undergoing a surgical procedure in the abdomen, the increased layers of fat make surgery more difficult; it is harder to visualize organs and other tissue, to securely ligate (tie off) vessels, and to close the incision working with extra layers of fat.

By Janet Tobiassen Crosby, DVM, Guide

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Gliding Ants

We already know some species of ants can solve puzzles, some species can do math, and others even have built-in GPS. Add the ability to fly -- or glide -- to safety, and ants are practically the superheroes of the insect world. And there's no magic suit (or appendage) necessary.

The Cephalotes atratus species of tree-nesting ant can perform directed aerial descent, according to a recent article in Integrative and Comparative Biology. Simply put, when these ants find themselves falling from extreme heights through a forested canopy, they can zip themselves out of a free fall and back into the safety of the treetops -- no wings necessary.

Gliding animals are nothing new to science. Fish, lizards and even snakes have been known to "fly" without wings. But what makes these ants so unique isn't what they have, but what they don’t.

"In general, all the gliders that we know of have some aspect of their body shape that shows that they have some kind of aerodynamic potential... . But when you look at one of these ants there’s nothing obvious about it that would suggest that it should do anything but fall straight down," said University of California at Berkeley researcher and PhD candidate Yonatan Munk, who co-authored the paper with Stephen P. Yanoviak and Robert Dudley.

Munk has been lugging specially designed wind tunnels into the Amazonian rain forest since 2007. With these vertical wind tunnels, researchers have been able to capture, on video, the exact movements that allow the ants to control their glides.

The key to directed aerial descent is in the back legs and rearend. C. atratus stretches its legs out, raises them, and then lowers its "gaster," the posterior body segment: the butt. Voila! The ant has just become an aerodynamic, perfectly controlled backward-glider.

"It's fairly similar to what human skydivers do -- the principles are similar," Munk said. "It creates a mini parachute out of your own body, heavy parts low, and light parts high."

But how do these ants see where they're going? As it happens, directed aerial descent is only possible in daylight and so far, research suggests that C. atratus is attracted to light-colored vertical objects. Munk says this makes sense, given the fact that many of the trees in the Amazon rainforest have trunks covered in white lichens.

Despite understanding the mechanics of the ants' movements, researchers can only guess as to why this particular species of ant developed gliding skills, while others did not.

An ant that falls from a tree isn't in danger of dying from the fall itself (although it can be hurt), but rather the conditions on the ground. During the rainy season of the Amazon, the ant could be eaten by a fish. In the dry season, it could be attacked by another species of ant.

They believe it comes down to the value of an individual worker to the colony as a whole. While hitting bottom in the rainforest doesn't mean certain death, it still means a loss in productivity.

"Avoiding the forest floor only also makes sense if the loss of a worker represents a significant decrease in the colony to collect a resource," Munk explained.

If that's the case, Munk said he expected to find more species with similar abilities. The only difficulty, he said, is trying to identify which ants can and can't fly with no obvious outward signs -- until a researcher catches them in action.

Discovery News Analysis by Amy Enchelmeyer
Photo courtesy of Stephen Yanoviak

Monday, October 10, 2011

National Veterinary Technician's Week

The theme of this year's NVTW is "Pets and Vets need Techs". Celebrating for one week every year solidifies the yearly commitment every veterinary technician gives to the profession of veterinary technology, veterinary assisting and veterinary medicine.

NVTW has been an annual tradition since June 1993 when a NAVTA ( North American Veterinary Technician Association) resolution was passed declaring the third week in October as NVTW. Activities to celebrate this week have been a focus of the celebratory efforts. The activities serve these fundamental goals:

•Educate the public about veterinary technicians and what we do

•Reinforce the value and professionalism of veterinary technicians

•Provide an opportunity for veterinary technicians to encourage one another for excellent work ethic and team building

•Acknowledge our quality relationship with veterinarians and other veterinary professionals

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Paco, the wonder chihuahua, thwarts robbery

As armed men robbed a smoke shop in Altadena, Calif. on July 7, a small, but mighty chihuahua named Paco came to the rescue, barking and chasing the robbers out of the store.

The Los Angeles County sheriff’s department released surveillance video showing the robbery and the dog’s daring attack in hopes of finding the two men responsible. Even though the pup thoroughly frightened the robbers, they did manage to get away with some cash.

Paco is well-known in the area, his owner Duane Deer said on “Good Morning America.” He spends his days wandering around the neighborhood and hanging out in different stores, Deer said. Eric Knight, the store’s owner, said he was “shocked” by the robbery in the usually safe neighborhood and by Paco’s super-dog behavior. Paco, however, looked completely bored by his heroism, opting to sleep during most of his interview.

To watch the video, go to:

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Original Cat Names

Admit it- your cat is worthy of the greatest name ever. Don't settle for 'Socks' or 'Kitty' when you could have one of these excellent names!

Celtic cat names for boy cats: Arthur,Brian,Corey,Drew,Gavin,Tristan,Tully
Celtic cat names for girl cats: Dallas,Pixie,Sabrina,Sienna

Irish cat names: Bailey,Blarney,Conan,Dempsey,Dougal,Hugh,Keegan,Murphy,Paddy,Rory

Spanish cat names for girl cats: Blanca, Bonita, Chi-Chi, Esmerelda, GabriellaIsa, Bella, Maria,Rosita,Sierra

Spanish cat names for boy cats: Alex, Gato, Hombre, Martin, Pablo, Pepe, Salvador, Sebastian, Senor

Nombres Espanoles for boy and girl cats: Feliz, Leon, Loco,Oso, Rico, Rojo

Persian cat names for boys: Buddha, Genghis, Maestro, Pharaoh, Prince, Ramses, Sphinx
Persian cat names for girls: Cleopatra, Fantasia, Fatima, Josephine, Nyssa, Sheba

Persian cat names from Persia: Asad, Babir, Cyrus, Noor, Ramesh

Greek cat names for boy cats: Anthony, Archimedes, Damien, harpies, Jason, Oedipus, Orion, Otis, Socrates, Titus, Troy
Greek cat names for girl cats: Athena, Goddess, Octavia, Omega

Neutral Greek cat names: Alpha, Basil, Cash, Clark

Japanese cat names for girl cats: Aiko, Aki, Akira, Kara, Keiko, Kia, Kiko, Mika, Miki, Suki
Japanese cat names for boy cats: Kai, Kimo, Kuro, Niko, Suzake, Toro, Suzaku
Japanese cat names for boy and girl cats:Haiku, Obi, Sake, Sushi, Tsunami

Egyptian cat names: Cleo, Pharaoh, Phoenix, Tut
Egyptian cat names for girl cats: Cairo, Cleopatra, Sheba, Sphinx
More Egyptian cat names: Bennu, Harpies, Ramses

Sunday, October 2, 2011

More Celebrity Dog Names- by Breed!

Chihuahua Dog Names

Ceelo and Lolly - Adrien Brody
Maggie - Scarlett Johansson
Tinkerbell, Bambi, Tokyo Blu, Harajubu Bitch - Paris Hilton
Bit Bit, Lacy, Lucky, Snow White - Britney Spears
Luca - Pamela Anderson

Maltese Puppy Names

Jinxy - Eva Longoria
Marilyn - Anna Nicole Smith
Chloe - Lindsay Lohan
Samantha - Barbra Streisand
Daisy - Jessica Simpson's Maltipoo (Maltese cross Poodle)
Blondie - Ashlee Simpson's Maltipoo

Pomeranian Dog Names

Foxxy Cleopatra - Nicole Richie
Daddie - Geri Haliwell
Princess Pep - Courtney Love
Minnie - Sharon Osbourne

Pug Dog Names

Sid, Nancy - Jessica Alba
Mimi LaRue - Tori Spelling
Boo Radley - Jake Gyllenhaal's Puggle (Pug cross Beagle)

Cocker Spaniel Dog Names

Solomon, Sophe - Oprah
Buttermilk - Ashley Judd's Cockapoo (Cocker Spaniel cross Poodle)
Shih tzu Dog Name
Puppy - Anna Nicole Smith
Honeychild - Nicole Richie
Munchie - Beyonce

Yorkie Dog Names

Vida - Giselle Bundchen
Veronica - Joan Rivers
Jazzy, Juicy - Cindi Adams from the New York Post

Small Dog Names

Lulu - Joan Rivers's Boston Terrier
Licorice - Famke Janssen's French Bulldog
Coco Chanel - Reese Witherpoon's French Bulldog
Jackson P. Mutley - Mariah Carey's Jack Russell
Neal - Liv Tyler's King Charles Cavalier Spaniel
Stinky and Chui - Christina Aguilera's two Papillons
Max - Joan Rivers's Pekingese
Sugar Pie - Anna Nicole Smith
Noodles - Natalie Portman's Schnoodle (Miniature Schnauzer cross Poodle)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Animal Defense Mechanisms

1. Malaysian Ants: When feeling threatened, these ants internally combusts causing their bodies to explode! Contracting their abdomen upon threat, sets off poison filled glands on the sides of their bodies that kills their enemies once they are close enough!

2. Hairy Frog: This weird amphibian purposefully breaks its own leg to signal its body to dispense cat-like claws that pierce through the frogs toe pads once feeling threatened! Their is debate among scientists on whether these claws are retractable or not.

3: Horned Lizard: As its name might imply, this little guy does not use its horns to defend itself. Instead it fills its sinus cavity with pressure upon threat until the blood vessels in its eye burst, spraying blood all over its enemy!

4: Potato Beetle: Look out for their babies! These specie's little ones cover themselves in their own feces, which are highly toxic, to repel predators!

5: Bombardier Beetle: These small beetle use the power of their behind to ward off threats! It sprays boiling hot toxic bodily fluid from their anus that could nearly melt their enemies!

6: Hog-nose Snake: These smart serpents know how to play dead! They roll over onto their backs and pretend to be dead, in conjunction with excreting a foul odor, so that predators aren't interested in eating them.

7. Sea Cucumber: Don't let the harmless name fool you! This deceiving marine creature excretes sticky string-like filaments from its anus to capture predators and shoot toxins at it when attacked.

8. Larks: Ever try singing to an enemy? These courageous birds like to sing to predator birds when being chased as a warning that they will be difficult to capture so watch out!

9: Opossum: They are a creature of many talents! They defend themselves against predators by involuntarily going into a comatose-like state which is triggered by extreme fear making them look dead. Also, they will make themselves drool by working their jaw excessively which gives the signal to predators that it's sick!

10: Hagfish: Suffocation by ooze...yikes! This strange fish oozes a slimy substance from its pores when under attack that engulfs its predator ultimately suffocating it.


Sunday, September 25, 2011

Itching for fall

Autum is actually the peak time for ragweed and mold spores, which are common allergerns for two- and four-leggers alike. If your pet is prone to allergies, follow these tips to avoid potential fall flare-ups:

Mold thrives in decaying vegetation, such as leaves. Once you've raked all the leaves from your yard into piles, be sure to bag them up to avoid mold growth.

If your pet is sensitive to allergens, avoid or limit outdoor playtime, especially among the leaves. A good time for outdoor play is after a rainfall.

Bump up the number of baths your pet gets during her peak allergy season. Twice weekly bathing can keep allergen levels down. Using soothing shampoos and creme rinses will help quiet irritated skin.

Fleas and ticks can contribute to =itchy si=kin. Be sure to use a monthly preventative, such as Frontline, regularly.

Add omega-3 fatty acids to your pet's diet. In addition to contributing to helthy skin, they can be beneficial to your pet's joints and cognitive function.

If your pet's itch can't be easily scratched, visit your veterinarian. Oral antihistamines or steroids may be necessary. For persistant seasonal allergies, consider having your pet tested to determine the source of the trouble.

Fetch 2011 No. 3 issue 9

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

What is GDV?

What is GDV?

Gastric dilatation is a condition that can develop in many different breeds of dogs. The condition is commonly associated with large meals and causes the stomach to dilate because of food and gas and may get to a point where neither may be expelled. As the stomach begins to dilate and expand, the pressure in the stomach begins to increase. The increased pressure and size of the stomach may have several severe consequences, including preventing adequate blood return to the heart from the abdomen, loss of blood flow to the lining of the stomach, and rupture of the stomach wall. As the stomach expands, it may also put pressure on the diaphragm preventing the lungs from adequately expanding, which leads to decreased ability to maintain normal breathing. Additionally, the stomach can become dilated enough to rotate in the abdomen, a condition called volvulus. The rotation can occasionally lead to blockage to the blood supply to the spleen and the stomach wall requiring surgical removal of the dead tissues. Most of these patients are in shock due to the effects on the
entire body.

Who is at risk?

There is an association in dogs that have a deep chest (increased thoracic height to width ratio), dogs that are fed a single large meal once daily, older dogs and dogs that are related to other dogs that have had the condition. Commonly seen breeds are Great Danes,
Weimaraners, St. Bernards, Irish Wolfhound, Irish setters and Gordon setters. Female and male dogs are represented equally and dogs as young as 10 months and as old as 14 years have been recognized.

What is a Gastropexy?

A gastropexy is where the stomach is tacked to the right side of the abdominal wall, so it cannot shift or twist. The primary indication for gastropexy is to prevent the development or recurrence of gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV). Prophylactic gastropexy is currently
being recommended by many veterinary surgeons for breeds at risk for development of the condition or in dogs that have relatives that have been related to others that have had this condition. Prophylactic gastropexy can often be done at the same time as spay/neuter surgeries. For more information on whether a gastropexy may be indicated for your dog, talk to a Kingsbrook staff member.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

How do dogs drink?

Why does my dog have all those ridges in the roof of the mouth? Using high speed and x-ray videos, researchers at Harvard have determined that when dogs drink they lift water into their mouth and then use these ridges, really called rugae, to hold the water until they swallow it. For the complete article go to:

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Most Adorable Pets in America

Kudos to Kenny Walter for being featured in the 2011 edition of "The Most Adorable Pets in America". Kenny has been a patient here at Kingsbrook Animal Hospital since March of 2001 when he came in as a little kitten adopted from Frederick County Humane Society. Since then we have gratefully cared for Kenny and are happy to report that he is a very healthy 10 year old kitty with a stellar personality. Congragulations to Kenny and his dedicated owners who take amazing care of him.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Preparing for a bath

Even the cleanest of pets can sometimes need a bath. For dogs, regular bathing can help keep their skin and haircoat healthy. In general, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) recommends bathing your dog about every 3 months; however, certain breeds and dogs that spend a lot of time outside may need to be bathed more often. Cats, on the other hand, generally do not need regular baths—their tongues are designed to be an essential grooming tool. However, there are situations when your cat or dog may need a bath:

• If your pet comes in contact with a potentially hazardous substance or sticky material

• If you are allergic and want to keep pet dander to a minimum

• If your pet goes or gets outside and comes in contact with dirt or fleas

• If a medicated shampoo is prescribed or recommended by us to treat a certain condition

Preparing for a Bath

Try to make bathing a pleasant experience for your pet and for you! If you can teach your pet to enjoy being bathed, it can be another way to strengthen your relationship. However, even the calmest of pets (especially cats) may become stressed around water. Make sure you have everything ready ahead of time to keep bath time as short and relaxed as possible:

A tub (indoors or out) or sink with warm (not hot) water

A spray hose or nozzle or a large plastic pitcher or unbreakable cup

A washcloth for cleaning your pet’s head and face

A rubber bath mat to keep your pet from slipping

A mild shampoo made for dogs or cats (depending on your pet) or the prescribed medicated shampoo

Old clothes to wear (for cat owners, make sure you are protected against scratches and bites)

Plenty of large, absorbent towels and/or a blow dryer, if your pet will tolerate it Toys and treats for rewarding good behavior

It may be beneficial to have another person assist you in restraining your pet dur- ing the bath. If you are comfortable doing so, you can trim your pet’s nails the night before bathing to minimize the chance of scratches. Mats, tangles, and loose hair are also easier to remove by brushing before bathing.

The Bath

• Make sure the water in the tub or sink is not too deep for your pet. For cats and small dogs, 3 to 5 inches of water is enough. Place your pet in the water and, if you have one, use the spray hose to thoroughly wet your pet, being careful not to spray directly in his or her eyes, ears, or nose. If you don’t have a spray hose, use the plastic pitcher, cup, washcloth, or your hands to scoop up the water in the tub.

• Gently massage the shampoo into your pet’s haircoat from head to tail. Follow the labeled instructions carefully. Don’t forget to lather hard-to-reach areas, such as between the legs and the body. Avoid getting any shampoo in your pet’s eyes, ears, nose, or mouth. Use the washcloth to wipe the face/head.

• Thoroughly rinse your pet, again taking care to avoid the ears, eyes, and nose. You may need to drain and refill the sink or tub a few times to make sure you have removed all of the shampoo. Don’t forget to check the feet, under the chin, under the abdomen and chest, and any other areas that can be hard to rinse. Shampoo residues left on the skin and hair can be irritating; cats, in particular, may lick them off later, which can cause illness.

• Dry your pet with the towels or a blow dryer on a low setting. If you use a blow dryer, you may need to slowly introduce your pet to the sound of the dryer. Also, make sure

Try to make bathing a pleasant experience for your pet and for you! If you can teach your pet to enjoy being bathed, it can be another way to strengthen your relationship.

Make sure that the blow dryer air doesn’t get too hot for your pet. If you can only towel dry your pet, be sure to keep him or her in a well- controlled climate until completely dry.

• Give your pet a toy, treat, and/or calm praise as a reward for good behavior.

If you have any questions about bathing your pet or whether he or she needs bathing, please ask! We are happy to help you keep your pet clean and healthy.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Some of the oldest animals on earth...

"There are tortoises alive today that were 25 to 50 years old when Charles Darwin was born. There are whales swimming the oceans with 200-year-old ivory spear points embedded in their flesh. There are cold-water sponges that were filter-feeding during the days of the Roman Empire. In fact, there are a number of creatures with life spans that make the oldest living human seem like a spring chicken in comparison."

Geoducks: large saltwater clams that are native to the Puget Sound and have been known to live for at least 160 years.

Tuataras: The two species of tuatara alive today are the only surviving members of an order which flourished about 200 million years ago — they are living dinosaurs. They are also among the longest-lived vertebrates on Earth, with some individuals living for anywhere between 100 and 200 years.

Red sea urchin: The red sea urchin is found only in the Pacific Ocean, primarily along the West Coast of North America. It lives in shallow, sometimes rocky, waters. They crawl along the ocean floor using their spines as stilts. Some specimens are more than 200 years old.

Bowhead whales: Also known as the Arctic whale, the bowhead is by far the longest living mammal on Earth. Some bowhead whales have been found with the tips of ivory spears still lodged in their flesh from failed attempts by whalers 200 years ago. The oldest known bowhead whale was at least 211 years old.

Koi: Koi are an ornamental, domesticated variety of the common carp. The are common in artificial rock pools and decorative ponds. Amazingly, some varieties are capable of living more than 200 years.

Tortoises: Tortoises are considered the longest living vertebrates on Earth. One of their oldest known representatives was Harriet, a Galápagos tortoise that died of heart failure at the age of 175 years in June 2006 at a zoo owned by the late Steve Irwin. Harriet was considered the last living representative of Darwin's epic voyage on the HMS Beagle.

Antarctic sponge: Perhaps due to the extremely low temperatures of the Antarctic Ocean, this immobile creature has an extremely slow growth rate. Some estimate the oldest known specimens are 1,550 years old.

Turritopsis nutricula jellyfish: This species of jellyfish might be the only animal in the world to have truly discovered the fountain of youth. Since it is capable of cycling from a mature adult stage to an immature polyp stage and back again, there may be no natural limit to its life span. "

For the full slide show with pictures, visit

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Meet Sophia Loren

Meet Sophia Loren. She came to Kingsbrook Animal Hospital on 8/5/11 through Frederick County Animal Control after they were contacted by someone who found her wondering in a local business parking lot. She is a sweet 9 pound poodle mix that had obviously suffered some serious neglect. She had evenly spaced infected wounds on the side of her neck where something must have been poking into her skin. She was covered from head to toes to the tip of her tail in about 2 inches of solid matts and had to be shaved to the skin. She also had abrasive lesions on her side and knee. She has been adopted by a staff member at Kingsbrook Animal Hospital and is ready to start her life as an 8 year old girl's "dream dog". Welcome to the Kingsbrook Animal Hospital family Sophia. We are so glad you found us.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Easing the Way in Therapy With the Aid of an Animal

We’ve all seen guide dogs that can direct blind people around obstacles and tell them when it is safe to cross the street. Perhaps you also know of guide dogs for the deaf, which can alert people to a ringing phone, a doorbell or a smoke alarm, or dogs that can warn people with epilepsy of an incipient seizure, giving them time to get to a safe place before they lose consciousness.

Dr. Marty Becker, veterinarian and author (with Danelle Morton) of “The Healing Power of Pets” (Hyperion, 2002), tells of a golden retriever named Dakota, who was able to warn his master, Mike Lingenfelter, that a heart attack was imminent and alert Mr. Lingenfelter to the need to leave a stressful situation and take preventive medication.

“This dog is leading me through life,” Mr. Lingenfelter told Dr. Becker. “All I’m doing is following the dog.”

In recent decades, there have been countless such stories of animals helping to improve and even preserve the lives of children and adults with all manner of diseases and disabilities. Trained dogs are being used to help keep children with autism safe and to break the “freeze” that can afflict people with Parkinson’s disease when they try to walk. And dogs, cats, bunnies and birds are often brought to schools and institutions, as well as to hospitals and nursing homes, where they help to relax and inspire residents and distract patients from their health problems.

But the use of animals to enhance health can go well beyond individual cases and group settings. A growing number of psychotherapists are using therapy animals to facilitate treatment, especially treatment of children with emotional, social and even physical problems.

Among the pioneers is Aubrey H. Fine, psychotherapist and professor at the California State Polytechnic University in Pomona, whose extensive successful use of therapy animals in treating children is documented in “The Handbook on Animal Assisted Therapy” (Elsevier/Academic Press, 2010).

As Dr. Fine describes one of his first and most inspiring cases, 5-year-old Diane was brought to him because she recoiled in fright from strangers, and though she spoke at home, she refused to speak to anyone else, including her kindergarten teacher.

A trained therapy dog named Puppy eventually broke the back of her selective mutism. Diane was petting Puppy, smiling and content, when Dr. Fine gave the dog a signal to walk away. Diane was crestfallen, and seeing the girl’s distress, Dr. Fine told her that all she had to do to get the dog back was to say, “Puppy, come.” Softly, the child said, “Puppy, come, please come, Puppy.” That incident became the bridge Dr. Fine needed to help the child overcome her socially disabling problem.

He tells of another troubled child who finally began to speak about being physically abused when Dr. Fine told him that the misshapen therapy animal he was playing with had been rescued from an abusive home where it had been seriously injured. In another case in which a child was told where — and where not — to touch the therapy animal, the child opened up about being inappropriately touched, sexually abused, by a family member.

“Children are more likely to reveal inner thoughts to the therapist because the animal is right next to them and helps them express themselves,” Dr. Fine said in an interview.

In early work in a social skills program for hyperactive children, Dr. Fine found that they could be more easily taught how to behave calmly if allowed to handle his pet gerbil. “I realized this approach can have a tremendous impact in teaching because it helps to change how we relate to other beings,” he said.

Although the field of animal-assisted therapy has grown a lot in the last four decades, experts readily acknowledge that it suffers from a lack of well-designed research that can establish guidelines for safety and effectiveness in various situations. For example, although using dolphins to treat autistic children has received considerable media attention, at least two studies found no evidence of benefit and considerable risk of harm to the animals and to the children, said James A. Griffin of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

The International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organizations insists that members limit service and therapy animals to domestic species trained for the job. And the Delta Society, which provides training programs for the animals, will not certify wild or exotic animals like snakes, ferrets, lizards and wolf-hybrids. However, the Delta Society says it “is constantly expanding the range of species included in the Pet Partners program” when there is adequate research to document the safety of their use.

To help give the field a firmer scientific footing, the Mars company, a leading producer of pet foods, initiated a research partnership with the national institute branch of which Dr. Griffin is deputy director. Among continuing studies:

The effects of therapeutic horseback riding on children and adolescents with autism. If safe and effective, riding is less invasive than medications used to treat common symptoms like irritability and hyperactivity.

A large epidemiological study to document the overall public health effects on children and adolescents of living with dogs and cats.

A study to determine whether therapy animals can help children with behavior disturbances attributed to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder develop better self-regulation, self-esteem and social behavior.

Studies using survey and genetic tools to help select the most effective cats or cat breeds to work with autistic children.

Dr. Griffin acknowledged in an interview how difficult it can be to design a scientifically valid study using animals because “it can’t be a blind study — you know if the patient has a therapy dog.” But he described one recent study in which the patient, a young boy with autism, served as his own control. When he was with the therapy dog, levels of the stress hormone cortisol in the child dropped; the levels rose when the dog was taken away, and dropped again when the dog was returned. The next step would be to coordinate biochemical changes with behavioral effects — is the child calmer and easier to handle when with a therapy animal?

Dr. Fine emphasized the challenges of working with therapy animals as well as documenting its effectiveness. He said, “You can’t just bring in any animal to a therapy setting. The animal has to be very well trained, reliable, obedient and have the right temperament. It can’t be overly anxious or easily startled. And the therapist has to know how to use it as a therapy adjunct, in combination with good psychotherapy. The animal is there to help support what I’m doing, to act as a catalyst and not a distraction. And, of course, animal-assisted interventions have to be safe for everyone involved — the patient and the animal.”

The New York Times
Published: March 14, 2011