Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Pets as Presents: Don't Let the Pets Get Lost in the Tinsel

It's hard to resist the joy of giving your favorite loved one the pet they've always wanted for Christmas. However, the result of many of these well intentioned gifts is animals that are unwanted, uncared for and oftentimes sent to shelters. 

An animal of any kind (even one as small as a fish or a hamster) is not a light, last minute purchase. Bringing a new life into the house should be well thought out and discussed with the entire family. 

Holiday pets often get ignored in the holiday rush. Christmas morning is filled with so many presents, lots of food, family and relatives coming over...then there's New Years in a few days. You think it's stressful on you? Thank about what a pet who's never been in your house before would be thinking. A new pet needs lots of quiet and calm. A new puppy or kitten needs to watched constantly and settle into a routine so they can become a happy member of the family. This is impossible to accomplish on Christmas. The new pet will just end up confused and scared. 

You should never pick an actual pet for another person, even a child. Bring the child along to pick out the animal and let it be a family event. All animals (even hamsters and fish) have distinct personalities and letting your entire family help with the choice makes the animal more special to them. Besides, don't you want to see how the puppy interacts with your entire family? That great puppy you pick out for your son might not like kids. Your son might decide the puppy you like plays too rough. Your kids may decide they'd rather have a cat! 

New Puppies

Almost every child asks Santa for one, however a dog is MAJOR purchase and a new puppy needs lots of attention and care. With the hustle and bustle of the Christmas/New Year holiday, the puppy probably won't get the attention it needs. That's not even taking into account all the ribbon, trees, rich Christmas foods, chocolate and other dangers the puppy could unintentionally get in while your family is busy with their other gifts. 

Alternate ideas: Give the kids a stuffed puppy and tell them the new puppy is coming. Wrap a puppy bowl, collar, crate and other puppy supplies with a "certificate" to get a puppy at a later date. All of this stuff should be set up and ready for the puppy when it comes home anyway. This way, you and your family can set it up while you tell them about the responsibility of a new dog. Another great idea is a few books on puppy care (especially if you have an older child).

New Kittens

Kittens don't take quite as much attention as puppies but they can still get into a lot of trouble at Christmas. Kittens are notorious for swallowing tinsel and ribbon and getting lots of stomach problems. Small kittens scare easily and the safest retreat will probably be up the tree which can be dangerous. 

Alternate ideas: Cat care kits, litter boxes, cat toys, books on kitten care. The litter box and a bed for kitty should be in place before he gets to his new house. You and the kids can decide where to put it.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Holiday Safety Tips

Holly, Jolly and Oh-So-Safe! Of course you want to include your furry companions in the festivities, pet parents, but as you celebrate this holiday season, try to keep your pet's eating and exercise habits as close to their normal routine as possible. And be sure to steer them clear of the following unhealthy treats, toxic plants and dangerous decorations:
O Christmas Tree Securely anchor your Christmas tree so it doesn't tip and fall, causing possible injury to your pet. This will also prevent the tree water—which may contain fertilizers that can cause stomach upset—from spilling. Stagnant tree water is a breeding ground for bacteria and your pet could end up with nausea or diarrhea should he imbibe.
Tinsel-less Town
Kitties love this sparkly, light-catching "toy" that's easy to bat around and carry in their mouths. But a nibble can lead to a swallow, which can lead to an obstructed digestive tract, severe vomiting, dehydration and possible surgery. It's best to brighten your boughs with something other than tinsel.
No Feasting for the Furries
By now you know not to feed your pets chocolate and anything sweetened with xylitol, but do you know the lengths to which an enterprising fur kid will go to chomp on something yummy? Make sure to keep your pets away from the table and unattended plates of food, and be sure to secure the lids on garbage cans.
Toy Joy
Looking to stuff your pet's stockings? Choose gifts that are safe.

  • Dogs have been known to tear their toys apart and swallowing the pieces, which can then become lodged in the esophagus, stomach or intestines. Stick with chew toys that are basically indestructible, Kongs that can be stuffed with healthy foods or chew treats that are designed to be safely digestible.
  • Long, stringy things are a feline's dream, but the most risky toys for cats involve ribbon, yarn and loose little parts that can get stuck in the intestines, often necessitating surgery. Surprise kitty with a new ball that's too big to swallow, a stuffed catnip toy or the interactive cat dancer—and tons of play sessions together.
Forget the Mistletoe & Holly
Holly, when ingested, can cause pets to suffer nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Mistletoe can cause gastrointestinal upset and cardiovascular problems. And many varieties of lilies, can cause kidney failure in cats if ingested. Opt for just-as-jolly artificial plants made from silk or plastic, or choose a pet-safe bouquet.
Leave the Leftovers
Fatty, spicy and no-no human foods, as well as bones, should not be fed to your furry friends. Pets can join the festivities in other fun ways that won't lead to costly medical bills.
That Holiday Glow
Don't leave lighted candles unattended. Pets may burn themselves or cause a fire if they knock candles over. Be sure to use appropriate candle holders, placed on a stable surface. And if you leave the room, put the candle out!
Wired Up
Keep wires, batteries and glass or plastic ornaments out of paws' reach. A wire can deliver a potentially lethal electrical shock and a punctured battery can cause burns to the mouth and esophagus, while shards of breakable ornaments can damage your pet's mouth.
House Rules
If your animal-loving guests would like to give your pets a little extra attention and exercise while you're busy tending to the party, ask them to feel free to start a nice play or petting session.
Put the Meds Away
Make sure all of your medications are locked behind secure doors, and be sure to tell your guests to keep their meds zipped up and packed away, too.
Careful with Cocktails
If your celebration includes adult holiday beverages, be sure to place your unattended alcoholic drinks where pets cannot get to them. If ingested, your pet could become weak, ill and may even go into a coma, possibly resulting in death from respiratory failure.
A Room of Their Own
Give your pet his own quiet space to retreat to—complete with fresh water and a place to snuggle. Shy pups and cats might want to hide out under a piece of furniture, in their carrying case or in a separate room away from the hubbub.
New Year's Noise
As you count down to the new year, please keep in mind that strings of thrown confetti can get lodged in a cat's intestines, if ingested, perhaps necessitating surgery. Noisy poppers can terrify pets and cause possible damage to sensitive ears.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Holiday Pet Gifts

Are you looking for a gift for your canine friend that is sure to get the tails wagging and paws pouncing this holiday season? For the safety conscious pet, you could always get them a new travel carrier or car seat harness. Or for the sophisticated pet, try some baked doggie goods from your local doggie bakery. If purchasing special goodies from bakeries isn’t your thing, make your own doggie treats! For the owner on a budget or for the pet who has everything, the gift of time is the top gift for any pet this year.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Table Foods and Pets

Did you know that some common “people foods” can be extremely dangerous to your pet’s health? Foods such as onions, macadamia nuts, avocado, grapes, raisins, chocolate, and parts of the turkey, just to name a few, should never be fed to your animal companions. While you are enjoying your holiday meal this season, be sure to keep plenty of pet-friendly treats on hand so your four legged family member will be less likely to beg for scraps.

Friday, December 2, 2011

National Mutt Day!

Today is National Mutt Day! National Mutt Day is all about embracing, saving and celebrating mixed breed dogs. There are millions of loving and healthy mixed breed dogs sitting in shelters, which are desperately searching for a new home. Consider a mixed breed pet for your next furry family member! 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month

Did you know?
-Cancer accounts for nearly 50% of all disease-related pet deaths each year
-One in four dogs die of cancer.
-Approximately 1 in 4 dogs develops a tumor of some kind during his lifetime.
-Just like in humans, cancer can occur in any part of your dog’s body.

Are you aware that November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month? Run your hands over your pet and feel for any unusual lumps or bumps. If you feel something new or unusual, let's take a look at it. Dogs and cats can get benign lumps such as lipomas and sebaceous cysts, but they can also get much more serious tumors, like mast cell tumors, melanomas, squamous cell carcinomas, and many others. Many of these can be diagnosed with a simple in-office procedure involving a needle aspirate and then a microscopic exam of the cells obtained. A fine needle aspirate is generally less painful than a vaccination, so don't hesitate to get that lump checked out. The importance of annual check-ups regardless of the age of your pet is critical in the prevention of cancer. 

Here are the top 10 early warning signs of pet cancer listed out by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

1. Abnormal swellings that persist or continue to grow
2. Sores that do not heal
3. Weight loss
4. Loss of appetite
5. Bleeding or discharge from any body opening
6. Offensive odor
7. Difficulty eating or swallowing
8. Hesitation to exercise or loss of stamina
9. Persistent lameness or stiffness
10. Difficulty breathing, urinating or defecating

Better to be safe than sorry, and much better to catch something sooner rather than later!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


November is Senior Pet Month. Do you have an older cat or dog sharing your home? If so, you know the joys of pets who might have less spunk but more soul. Here are five reasons to love a senior pet.

1. Distinguished look
You know how as we age, we are said to look distinguished? The same is true for our pets. I think senior cats project an air of peaceful dignity. And who can resist the precious gray muzzle of an older dog?
2. Laid-back lifestyle
For kittens and puppies, most any time is play time. Older pets, however, don’t need to release all that youthful energy. They are quieter and often content to just watch what’s going on in the living room or outside the window. Cuddling next to you takes precedence over most anything else.
3. Fewer demands
Older pets still need love and attention, but they don’t require babysitting like a frisky puppy or curious kitten. Some older pets have special medical needs, but after all they’ve given us through the years, it’s an honor to take care of them in return.
4. Wisdom of the ages
When I look into the eyes of a senior dog, I see a world of experience and wisdom. Older pets know what to expect, and are generally reliable and even. They require little training since they already know the rules.
5. They might be just like you!
As we get older, our needs and routines change. We might prefer quiet evenings at home rather than going out on the weekends. We still like to exercise, walk, or even run—but sometimes we go at a different pace. We might even nap in our chair occasionally. If you have a senior dog, you might find that he’s just like you!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Wackiest Pet Names of 2011

Ozzy Pawsbourne and Almost-A-Dog top this year's list of quirkiest monikers.
Fido, Spot or Fluffy? For some peculiar pet owners, these names are just too traditional. Although "Bella" and "Max" currently lead the pack as the nation's most popular pet names, thousands of other four-legged friends have much more distinctive names.

So drumroll, please... the 10 Most Unusual Dog and Cat Names for 2011:
  1. Almost-A-Dog
  2. Franco Furter
  3. Stinkie Mcstinkerson
  4. Sir Seamus McPoop
  5. Audrey Shepburn
  6. Dewey Decimell
  7. Knuckles Capone
  8. Beagle Lugosi
  9. Shooter Mclovin
  10. Uzi Duzi-Du
  1. Ozzy Pawsbourne
  2. Mr. Meowgi
  3. Murderface
  4. Fuglee
  5. Scruffernutter
  6. Corporal Cuddles
  7. Cat Masterson
  8. Spam
  9. Tape W. Orm
  10. Louisiana Purchase

Thursday, September 15, 2011

$10 Off Exams

Brookfield Animal Hospital is proud to offer $10 off an examination for your pet. Call us at 203-775-3679 to schedule your pet's exam today!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Staff Spotlight

We are proud to honor Jenny as our Staff Spotlight. Jenny is one of our customer care coordinators. Her favorite part of working with us is getting to know all the clients and their pets. When she is not at work, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, and gardening, hiking and traveling. She especially likes spending time with her dog Zoe, a Wheaton Terrier. We are happy to have Jenny as a part of our team.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Happy Cat Month

The CATalyst Council has declared September as Happy Cat Month. This month is dedicated to finding ways to keep our feline friends happy, healthy and purring all year long. We are proud to announce that we offer Cat Only Appointments, so your feline friend will not be bothered by other visiting pets during their visit. Schedule your feline family members appointment with us today.

Friday, August 26, 2011

National Dog Day

Today is National Dog Day! Today is the day to recognize the number of dogs that need to be rescued each year, and acknowledge family dogs and dogs that work selflessly each day to save lives, keep us safe and bring comfort. Tell us your favorite story about the canine companion in your life.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Don’t run the risk of losing with your pet with no chance of reuniting. Even if your pet never wanders away, remember that in old age, pets have a tendency to lose their scent and can wander too far to retrace their steps. At Brookfield Animal Hospital, we recommend a microchip for every cat and dog.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Today is National Assistance Dog Day!

Today is National Assistance Dog Day! Assistance Dogs transform the lives of their human partners with physical and mental disabilities by serving as their companion, helper, best friend and close member of their family. We would like recognize and honor the hardworking assistance dogs and honor the puppy raisers and trainers of assistance dogs as well as recognize the heroic deeds performed by assistance dogs in our community.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Staff Spotlight for July

"Hi, I'm Norma, customer care coordinator.  I've been with Brookfield Animal Hospital since moving back to Connecticut in 2003.  I love my job! It's not often that a person can say they look forward to going to work every morning, but, I honestly can!  The ability to make someones day a little less stressful, by helping ease their concerns for their pets crisis is a very rewarding thing, and one of the many reasons I enjoy working here."

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


We are proud to welcome Tiffany, Melissa and Meg as part of our team at Brookfield Animal Hospital!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

June is Adopt a Shelter Cat Month at DAWS

[Danbury, CT June 8, 2011] –June is the American Humane Association’s Adopt a Shelter Cat Month. In support of the month-long event, the Danbury Animal Welfare Society (DAWS) will be lowering their feline adoption fees for the entire month. The public is encouraged to visit the shelter located at 147 Grassy Plain St., Bethel during our adoption hours Monday through Friday 6pm-8pm and Saturday & Sunday 2pm-4pm. For the entire month of June the adoption fee for kittens, 4 months and under, is $75 (regularly $125) and cats, over 4 months, are $50 (regularly $100).
The shelter has over 60 cats and kittens to choose from in need of good homes. From Tabbies to Calicos, Maine Coons to Russian Blues, DAWS has the cat for you. Come visit Angelica, the beautiful Maine Coon Mix  who just loves to be cuddled and brushed for hours or spunky Youkalis, a sassy little tuxedo cat who will play with you all day long.
Now that spring is here, there are also many kittens in foster homes waiting for a new family. For more information on our kittens under 4 months old, email cats@daws.org and an adoption counselor will assist you.
All the cats at the shelter and their informational profile can be found on the DAWS website at www.daws.org. To see the list of available cats and kittens, scroll over to “Adoption” and select “Cat Gallery”.
Danbury Animal Welfare Society, Inc., is a non-profit 501(c)(3) and donations are fully tax-deductible to the amount allowed by law.  For more information, contact or visit our website, www.daws.org.

Press Release Contact:  Lisa Chirco lmchirco@yahoo.com
DAWS Contact:  Cherly Rykowski cheryldaws@aol.com

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Staff Spotlight

We are proud to announce this months’ staff spotlight is MaryKate! She writes “Some things I enjoy about my job are assisting the doctors in surgery, learning new things, spending time with the animals that are boarding, taking care of animals after they have surgical procedures, and interacting with the clients. I love making people laugh and spending time with my family and my two cats, Guido and Sonny.”

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Pets in Cars

It’s fun to take your pet in the car when you’re running errands, but in the summer heat, the car can become a potential death trap. Inside temperatures can quickly climb to more than 120 degrees on even a mild sunny day. Never leave your pet unattended inside the car during the summer months. Be sure to bring your pet plenty of water to keep them cool as the season heats up! 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

ProHeart 6

Brookfield Animal Hospital is proud to offer ProHeart® 6 as a heartworm preventative for your pet! ProHeart® 6 provides six months of continuous protection in one dose! Unlike monthly pills you administer yourself, ProHeart® 6 is an injection given to your pet by one of our professionals. No more wondering when or if you gave the heartworm preventative. No more worrying about under-dosing or over-dosing. Just a quick visit to Brookfield Animal Hospital, and your best friend can be protected from deadly heartworm disease year 'round!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Cookouts and family reunions are great activities this time of year.  However, the food we often enjoy at these events can make pets sick and even cause Pancreatitis, which is a very serious disease.  We want to remind you to bring plenty of food and treats for your pets so they can join in the fun without risking a stomachache or other illness later. 

Monday, June 13, 2011


Going on vacation this summer and can’t take the whole family with you? Separate vacations may be in order...if so, trust Brookfield Animal Hospital for all your pet's boarding needs. Our caring and compassionate staff is here to help insure your worry free travels...while your pet relaxes and enjoys their vacation. Don’t forget to make reservations early as space tends to fill quickly!
Click here for more information about our boarding facility! 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


Don't forget about our Puppy Care Classes! Puppies will have a chance to socialize and mingle with each other. Classes are held two consecutive Saturday afternoons, approximately every 3 months. Our next class will be held on June 11th and June 18th!
Our Customer Care Coordinator, Norma Fiore, is a certified puppy care instructor.  She offers puppy care classes for new puppy owners.  Whether you've had dogs in the past, or are a first-time dog owner, her classes will help guide you through common puppy problems and provide medical & behavioral information in a fun, informal setting. 

Class topics include:
  • House Training
  • Preventive Health Care
  • First Aid & Emergency Care
  • Behavioral Issues including chewing
  • Basic Commands
Your puppy will graduate to be a fine young "lady" or "gentleman"!!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


We would like to share this tip about how to handle your pets during a storm. Fear of thunder and other loud noises may drive pets to seek shelter. Their attempts to seek immediate shelter may damage property and cause injury to themselves. Pets that react to loud noises can be trained not to panic through a process called progressive desensitization. We can review this process and recommend solutions that may help your pet weather through the storm!  

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Scalibor Protector Band for Dogs

Brookfield Animal Hospital is proud to offer the Scalibor Protector Band for Dogs. This is a highly effective collar that kills ticks, including deer ticks, which may carry Lyme Disease, for up to 6 months. Odorless, Non-staining and water resistant...this collar is exactly what your dog needs to stay protected this season! 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Smarter Than We Realize???

Most dogs know the works "sit" and "stay", but a new study published in the journal Behavioral Processes suggests they could learn a lot more. A Border Collie named Chaser has been trained to understand the names of 1,022 objects.

John W. Pilley, a retired psychology professor at Wofford College, became intrigued by an earlier study that demonstrated a dog named Rico knew more than 200 words, so he purchased a Border Collie puppy and began his own experiment into how dogs comprehend language.

Over the course of three years, Chaser was trained to recognize the names of 1,022 different objects. The objects were toys acquired from second-hand shops that he named everything from "squirrel" to "Uncle Fuzz." Professor Pilley believes she could still learn more.

Chaser also demonstrated she could distinguish nouns from behaviors. She was taught the commands "take", "nose" and "paw" (which meant to touch the object with her nose or paw), and asked to perform these behaviors in different combination on a few of her toys. She could do it every time!

Next, Chaser was trained to recognize categories. Could she understand that a "football" and a "tennis ball", were both a ball, which is different than a "Frisbee," but they were all "toys"? She could! This is something human children learn around the age of three.

Finally, Prof. Pilley wondered if Chaser could learn a new name by exclusion. He put a new toy amongst toys she knew well, and asked her to fetch it using a new name. This was a little harder for Chaser, but she could do it!

These fascinating studies could help scientists understand how children learn language, and help us all be aware that our dogs may be smarter than we realize.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

When temperatures soar, remember to watch your pet closely for signs of heatstroke or dehydration. Because dogs and cats don’t perspire heavily, their body temperatures rise much quicker than people’s body temperatures. We recommend scheduling exercise in the cooler mornings and evenings…and stopping for rest if your pet is lagging behind, even slightly. Plenty of shade and fresh water is a must, and keep your pet inside for those particularly hot afternoons. Just a tip so you and your pet can enjoy this great season together! 

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

May Staff Spotlight

This months’ staff spotlight is Christine, a veterinary assistant at Brookfield Animal Hospital. She writes “I enjoy getting to know the animals individually, and seeing their personalities grow as they grow up and become attached to their families. In my free time I am artistic, and also enjoy outdoor sports such as kayaking, hiking, and fire spinning.” We are proud to have her as a part of the team.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Spring is here! It's time to go outdoors with your pet and check out all flowers and plants.  Make sure to keep an eye on your pet in case a bee decides he doesn't want your pet to get up close and personal.  There are all sorts of flying critters out in the garden, so make sure your pet is protected from allergic reactions to insect bites or stings. Protect your pet so you both can enjoy the spring season together! 

Monday, May 9, 2011


Toxoplasmosis is an infection caused by a parasite called Toxoplasma gondii (or T. gondii). It is a zoonotic parasite, meaning it can be passed from animals to humans, and has been found worldwide. During the reproductive stages, this parasite only exists in cats (both wild and domestic); however, other stages of development are found in all mammals and birds.

T. gondii is transmitted by consumption of oocysts (the reproductive form of the parasite) from cat feces in the environment, consumption of infected meat, and from transfer of the parasite from a mother to her fetus. Healthy adult dogs and cats often show no signs of infection, but puppies and kittens may suffer from heart, liver, vision or neurological problems. Signs of infection may include diarrhea, cough, seizures and death, but are usually not sufficient alone for a diagnosis. Laboratory tests must be done to confirm the infection. Immune-compromised animals, such as cats with feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), are more susceptible to developing severe infections.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, "Toxoplasmosis is considered to be a leading case of death attributed to foodborne illness in the United States."

The majority of people who become infected only suffer from mild symptoms or no symptoms at all. For newly pregnant women and individuals with a compromised immune system, toxoplasmosis can have severe consequences. Women who are infected just before becoming pregnant or during their pregnancy are at risk for miscarriage or delivering babies with birth defects.

You can reduce your risk of infection and that of your pets as well by keeping these simple tips in mind:
  • Clean litter boxes daily.  Toxoplasmosis takes more than one day to become infectious. 
  • If you are pregnant or immune-compromised, ask someone else to clean the litterbox. If this isn't possible, wear gloves, and wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after cleaning. 
  • Keep outdoor sandboxes covered when not in use. 
  • Wash your hands thoroughly after contact with soil, sand, unwashed fruits and vegetables, and raw meat. 
  • Do not eat undercooked meat (especially lamb, pork or venison), and wash all utensils and cutting boards that come in contact with raw meat. 
  • Do not feed raw meat to your cats. 
  • Keep your cats indoors to prevent them from hunting. 

Friday, May 6, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

We would like to wish a Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there. You are appreciated and we are sure if your pets could, they would say the same thing! Have a great Mother's Day everyone!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

$10 Off Wisdom Panel!

Brookfield Animal Hospital is offering $10 off our Wisdom Panel. Wisdom Panel can determine the ancestry of a mixed-breed dog by testing for more than 185 breeds. Once an owner understands a dog’s natural tendencies, it makes it possible to create a tailored training, exercise and nutrition program to fit his one-of-a-kind needs. Act on this incredible discount today!

Click here for more information about Wisdom Panel~! 

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

This week is Be Kind to Animals Week!

Join the event that’s been celebrated every year since 1915 -- American Humane Association’s Be Kind to Animals Week. In this annual tradition, we commemorate the role animals play in our lives, promote ways to continue to treat them humanely, and encourage others, especially children, to do the same. While Be Kind to Animals Week is celebrated only once a year, we should strive to always be kind to animals every day. What is the kindest thing you've done for your pet today?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


As the temperature begins to raise so does something else…the flea population! Ideally, flea control should begin as flea prevention…before flea season starts. As a loving pet owner, you’d do anything to prevent your cat or dog from suffering, after all, they’re part of the family. Yet every year when flea season begins, it’s like an old broken record. Fleas bite, and the scratching and chewing starts again. It’s a painful and irritating routine for you and your pet. But that’s not all. The adult fleas on your pet can actually cause serious medical problems…like flea allergy dermatitis or tapeworms, and in some extreme cases, anemia. We can help! Ask us how to keep your pet flea free, at your next visit!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Pets and Cookouts

Cookouts and family get-togethers are great springtime activities.  However, the food we often enjoy at these events can make pets sick and even cause Pancreatitis, which is a very serious disease. Any food that is not made for your pet…is not good for them.  We want to remind you to bring plenty of food and treats for your pets so they can join in the fun without risking a stomachache or other illness later.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Avoiding The Easter Holiday Hazards!

With the arrival of the holiday season our pets are often prone to new un-thought of risks. Nothing makes a holiday more memorable than a panicked trip to the vets. But pet owners need not fret. Here's what you need to know to have an emergency-free celebration this Easter.

Festive Foods: One of the biggest risks to pets at Easter time is "CHOCOLATE". The canine nose is an expert in sniffing out all the lovely sweet goodies in an instant. And birds, cats & dogs alike are drawn to the bright colors & shiny wrappers. Chocolate contains a compound called theobromine that can be toxic to dogs, cats and parrots. Baker's chocolate has the highest concentration of theobromine. How a pet reacts to chocolate depends on its size, as well as the amount and type of chocolate eaten. Vomiting and diarrhea are common signs of chocolate toxicosis, and while rare, too much chocolate can even be fatal. Carob chocolate is a natural, delicious and  pet friendly alternative.

Foil packaging, ribbon and pretty sparkly plastic wadding  are irresistible to cats and birds, while a big shiny Easter egg appears as a fun ball for a dog.  Pets love to play with these items and they will sometimes swallow them. Known as linear foreign bodies in vet speak, they are undigestible and can cause a partial or complete obstruction. They are often sharp and run the risk of cutting through the wall of the intestinal tract which can cause peritonitis.

While we all love our pets and wish to include them in the festivities, it is important to remember that now matter how much they beg, what they want may not always be what is best for them. Rich fatty foods can cause an upset stomach, vomiting or even pancreatitis in the extreme. Onions both raw or cooked can be poisonous to cats and dogs. As little as one bite of an onion can cause some of the red bloods cells to be destroyed (haemolytic anaemia) symptoms can include pale gums, reddish urine and lethargy.

It is important to remember never to feed your pets cooked bones as they can splinter and cause internal damage. The same applies to feeding your pets fish which might contain bones. Bowls of nuts and raisin-laden fruitcakes or chocolate covered sultanas are also common holiday treats. Macadamia Nuts are toxic to dogs. Although one nut is not likely to harm your dog, a number of them could require a trip to the emergency ward. Dogs who ingest macadamia nuts could suffer weakness, depression, vomiting, tremors and hyperthermia.

Foods that are healthy for us may not be so good for our beloved pets. Raisins and grapes are toxic to cats and dogs causing vomiting, diarrhea, kidney failure and even death. While avocados are harmful to dogs, cats, birds and Guinea pigs. They contain a toxic fatty acid called persin which can cause vomiting, gastrointestinal irritation, congestion, respiratory disease, fluid accumulation around the heart tissue and may cause death, especially in small animals and birds. So please be careful when serving fruit platters or salads this Easter.

One very real concern to pets are products containing the artificial sweetner Xylitol. This absolutely needs to be avoided. It will cause low blood sugar if ingested in toxic amounts and has been known to cause fatal liver failure.
During the festive season it is easy to forget the dangers of leaving alcoholic drinks within reach of our pets. It may seem  harmless enough to offer your best mate a frosty cold one to celebrate alongside the humans. But alcohol poisoning is a very real danger to our pets. problems equate to the amount of alcohol ingested compared to weight. Even a very small amount of alcohol can cause severe poisoning in a small pet. The yeast contained in beer can also lead to bloating and abdominal pain.

The good news is there is now a specially designed non alcoholic doggy beer on the market called *Paw Rex* It is made with beef stock so dogs love it and even comes in a six pack.

It is also important to remember that most cats and dogs are lactose intolerant so avoid giving them any dairy products. Specially designed lactose free animal products are an available alternative.  It's up to us to make sure hazards are kept out of reach and that visitors or children know the risks. Remember prevention is better than cure. For healthy Easter treat alternatives to spoil your best friend, please visit our Pet Gourmet section in this special Easter addition of Pet Scene Magazine.

Unexpected Hazards:With all the coming and going and busy rush that comes with the holiday seasons it is easy for opportunities to arise to get our pets into trouble. It is not uncommon for visitors who are not used to pets to leave gates or doors open. This welcomes the opportunity for your pet to flee the house with all it's strange new smells, noise and people. An open window makes for a great escape root for cats or free flying birds. Many pets wind up getting lost or struck by vehicles as a result of this careless mistake. If you have a pet who becomes nervous around new people or strange activity it may be a good idea to plan in advance to have area of the house or yard which is separate where they can feel safe and secure. Visitors who aren't used to living with pets may inadvertently leave their medications within reach. This brings opportunities for serious problems. Dogs are not deterred by childproof caps and can quickly find themselves in a world of trouble. Warn guests to keep medications well out of reach.

Traveling with pets:If your going out of town with your pet this Easter there are a few things to remember:

* Make sure your pet is in a cool well ventilated position and never left alone in a closed car, temperatures can sore very quickly.

* Make sure your pet is secured in either a pet crate or safety harness.

* If your pet suffers from motion sickness it's recommended that you consult with your vet prior to travel to arrange an appropriate treatment.

* Make sure you plan for toileting and drink breaks. Our pets need to refresh too. 

* If you are planing to go out on the water these holidays be sure to pack your pet a life vest.

*  If you are going on holiday this Easter with your pets, be sure you have a full supply of any medications they may be taking with you.

The humble Easter Lily 
Many cat owners will be surprised to learn that lilies ( Liliaceae) are extremely toxic to their feline friends. The exact cause is unknown, however even the smallest amounts if ingested by cats can  be fatal, while dogs who ingest large amounts only develop signs of mild gastrointestinal upset. Early warning signs of Lily toxicity include vomiting, depression and a lack of appetite. There is no antidote, but with early detection and aggressive treatment the cat stands a better chances of survival. Cats may sometimes appear to be improving after the first onset of symptoms, but 24-72hrs later crash and become critically ill as they go into acute renal failure. If you suspect there is a chance your cat may have ingested this plant it is important to seek medical treatment as soon as possible. If left untreated cats die within 3-7 days. Cat owners should never grow Lilies in the garden and should ensure that lilies are never part of floral arrangements. This is important to remember these holidays with the popular Easter Lily appearing  in most flower arrangements. 

We hope that these tips will help you and your pets have a happy and safe
holiday season. 

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

As winter leads into spring, there are other safety concerns that you should be aware of regarding your pets. One of the main concerns involves lawn and garden products. Fertilizers can be very harmful and even deadly to pets so be sure to keep these products out of reach. Follow the directions on the fertilizer bag to the T! 

Friday, April 15, 2011

Officer Bruno

Officer Bruno of the Brookfield P.D. is wearing his custom fitted bullet proof vest. Brookfield Animal Hospital had an open house in November of 2009 and we began raising funds for him at that time. This effort continued into the spring of 2010. The money we raised, went toward the purchase of Officer Bruno's fitted bullet proof vest. Special thanks to his handler, Officer Osuch for getting these photos to us.

Easter Pet Tips

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

As you enjoy the outdoors and related activities this year, don’t forget to frequently check your pets for fleas and ticks.  These parasites will attach themselves to any available, warm-blooded host and engorge themselves.  They can carry a variety of serious diseases, some even life-threatening.  Ask any one of our staff members for recommendations on how to protect your pets from fleas and ticks at your next visit.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Team Member of the Month

Brookfield Animal Hospital is proud to honor Katie as our Team Member of the Month. Katie is a veterinary assistant and she writes “I really enjoy the one on one time I get with our boarders and patients. I also like bonding with their owners through their pets. In my spare time I love to go dancing with my girls and being creative and artistic by painting and making jewelry.”

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Spring is upon us and that means Spring break is quickly approaching. If you're taking a vacation and can’t bring your pet along…then leave them with us! We proudly offer boarding services. Spring Break rolls around fast, so make sure to schedule your appointment ahead of time!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Itching and scratching...lumps and bumps making life miserable for your pet? These symptoms may not be caused by fleas or ticks...but may be the cause of other skin irritations or allergies. We can help your suffering pet. Ask us about your pets condition at your next appointment with us.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

When you take your pet for a walk during the winter time, be sure to keep their feet in mind. To prevent frostbite, consider taking very short walks or buying your dog a pair of booties to protect their feet, and when you’re done with your walk, always wipe the sidewalk salt off the bottom of your pet’s feet, ingesting sidewalk salt can be very dangerous to your pet.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Did you know that fleas can survive in the cold winter weather? We recommend keeping your pet on a year round flea and tick preventative as well as a year round heartworm preventative, to ensure that your pet remains happy and healthy throughout the entire year.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Is your pet starting to get a little grey around the muzzle? As your pet ages, it is important to maintain optimum health for their quality of life. Senior pets need more extensive risk assessment visitations. Teeth should be brushed daily, exercise routines are important and remember obesity is the number one health problem in older dogs. With routine blood and urine analysis and more frequent risk assessment exams, your pet will live a long and healthy life.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

As always, exercise is important even in the winter months! If there’s snow on the ground, check your pet’s paws for ice balls or injuries. Rinse feet off if your pet has walked where de-icers have been used. If your pet is having difficulty exercising due to depth of snow, slick icy surfaces, or appears to be winded, we recommend that you shorten the usual exercise times and monitor for any unusual signs. If you suspect that your pet has ingested any harmful toxins from de-icers or anti-freeze, please let us know immediately, so that we may advise you about what to do next.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Staff Spotlight

Brookfield Animal Hospital would like to spotlight Lorraine Horton, one of our Customer Care Coordinators. She has worked with us since 2002. Lorraine says, "What I like about my job is I get to meet a lot of people and their animals. I love the way the people relate to their animals."

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) estimates more than 80 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats have oral disease by the time they are three years old. What are you doing to ensure your pet’s dental needs are cared for?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Dental Coupon

Did you know that dental care is an extremely important component of your pets overall health? More than 80% of dogs and cats over the age of three suffer from dental disease. Print out the coupon below and bring it in to your next visit and receive $25 off a dental cleaning! Offer ends February 28th.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Valentine's Day Tip

Mmmm…candy! But not for Fluffy! Chocolate, in all forms; is dangerous for both dogs and cats. The plastic or foil wrappers are dangerous if ingested. Make sure to keep pet treats at hand. When everyone else is enjoying the Valentine’s Day fun, let your pet in on the fun too! This will lessen the temptation to try to steal human treats. However, if you suspect that you pet has gotten into chocolate, or any other harmful substance; please call and we will guide you about what to do next. We care about your pet’s health.


Help Us Help Pets & People in Need

From time to time a pet is brought to us requiring urgent medical care; either a stray animal that someone found or a pet whose owner lacks the funds for treatment. This past August, we received a phone call from someone trying to find a veterinarian who would do surgery on her cat for an intestinal foreign body.

Unfortunately she had no funds to pay for the needed surgery and her regular veterinarian had declined to treat the cat without payment. Local animal welfare organizations were unable to provide her with financial assistance and other local vets had declined to help. After she contacted our hospital, we agreed to do surgery on the cat without payment. We removed electrical tape lodged in its
intestine, and the cat recovered well. The owner has agreed to repay our hospital, if able, in the future. 

Although this cat’s story ended happily, these days our hospital is seeing more sick or injured patients whose owners cannot afford treatment. To allow us to help more pets, we’ve decided to start a fund for cases like this to create more happy endings. Our fund is called the “Pets & People in Need Fund.” Join us in helping less fortunate area residents and their pets by contributing to this fund — together we can make a difference! We welcome contributions by check or over the phone on a credit card. We’ll keep you informed about those animals we’ve helped on our website and Facebook page.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Three New Loveable Breeds Join AKC Family

The American Kennel Club® (AKC®) expanded its litter of registered breeds on January 1, to welcome the Entlebucher Mountain Dog, the Norwegian Lundehund and the Xoloitzcuintli --growing AKC’s family to 170 breeds.
"The AKC is delighted to introduce these three distinct breeds to the public," said AKC Spokesperson Gina DiNardo. "Each loveable breed has a unique and diverse history and is a wonderful addition to the AKC."

The Entlebucher Mountain Dog was bred to move cows from pasture to pasture in the Swiss Alps. The breed is medium-sized and prized for its agreeable nature, trainability, and devotion. Entles are an active, high energy and physical breed with above average exercise requirements, so they are best suited for active families and not the casual dog owner. Additional facts on this breed can be found on the National Entlebucher Mountain Dog Association’s website at: www.nemda.org

The Norwegian Lundehund is known for having six toes on each foot and the ability to tip its head backward until it touches its backbone. These unique characteristics enabled the Norwegian Lundehund to climb steep, rocky cliffs and navigate crevices where the Puffins, a bird they were bred to hunt, nested. Lundehunds make loyal and playful companions, but can be wary of strangers if not socialized. Additional facts on this breed can be found on the Norwegian Lundehund Association of America’s at: www.nlaainc.com

The Xoloitzcuintli (pronounced show-low-etz-queent-lee) is one of the world’s rarest breeds and is still considered a "healer" in remote Mexican and Central American Villages today. The breed comes in three sizes: toy, miniature and standard; and two varieties: hairless and coated, which makes the Xolo ideal for those looking for a dog with more variety. They serve as an excellent companion for families due to their attentive and calm nature and require moderate exercise and grooming. Additional facts on this breed can be found on the Xoloitzcuintli Club of America’s website at: www.xoloitzcuintliclubofamerica.org

In addition, the AKC also welcomed the following breeds into the Miscellaneous Class: Bergamasco, Boerboels, Portuguese Podengo Pequenos, Sloughis, Peruvian Inca Orchid, Pumi, Dogo Argentino and Wirehaired Vizsla.

For breeds to become AKC-registered, they must first be recorded with an accepted registry. The AKC Foundation Stock Service® (FSS®) is the AKC's recording service for purebred breeds that are not yet eligible for AKC registration. After a breed is entered into FSS the recognition process begins with a written request to compete in the Miscellaneous Class from a National Breed Club. While there is no established timetable for adding new breeds, dogs typically compete in the Miscellaneous Class for one to three years. More information on the process can be found at the AKC’s Web site.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Senior Pets

Older pets tend to have a tougher time when the weather changes. If you’ve noticed your senior pet struggling to go up and down stairs, or having trouble rising up after a nap, they may be having an arthritic flare-up. We can prescribe them anti-inflammatory medications to help them feel younger again during the colder weather.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Cats & Car Engines

If the weather starts to get chilly, make sure your pet has some place warm to stay. Look before you start your car, tap on the hood, or better yet, open it. Cats love warm places and they will often climb onto car engine compartments to get warm. Lacerations, burns and other injuries can occur for a cat when an engine starts. Always know where your pets are, especially when the weather turns colder.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Upcoming AAHA Accreditation Inspections

Did you know Brookfield Animal Hospital is getting ready for their American Animal Hospital Association accreditation inspections? This accreditation helps us go above and beyond for our clients. It provides a certain set of standards to follow that ensures good quality medicine practices with our patients. It challenges us constantly to provide more and better services, ensuring we are up-to-date on all the latest changes in veterinary medicine.

 Click here to learn more about AAHA.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Tip for Dogs with Dry Skin

Here’s a tip for dogs with dry skin...bathe them less often, and make sure to brush their coat in an effort to rid the skin of dander. When you do bathe your pet, make sure to use a shampoo and rinse made for their special needs. Do not use a shampoo or conditioner made for people. If you would like some help picking out a dog safe shampoo and conditioner, please bring it to our attention at your next visit.

Monday, January 10, 2011

January's Book Club Selection!!!

Attention Book Club Participants! It's time to reveal January's Book Club selection! This month's selection is 'The Art of Racing in the Rain' by Garth Stein. Take this month to read the selection and check in with us on Monday, February 14 to discuss the themes and topics of the book and post your feedback. Enjoy!

Click here to view the amazon.com site and learn more about the book.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Year's Resolution

Does your New Year’s Resolution involve getting your pets behavior in check? We can provide advice regarding the correction of problems such as excessive barking, chewing, spraying, scratching, digging, house soiling and aggression. Make 2011 a great year for you and your pet!

Click below to view a pet behavior video from The Rachael Ray Show.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Heartworm Reminder

 Did you know that heartworm is a disease you can prevent your pet from having?  Heartworms are a constant threat to your animal, which is why our hospital recommends heartworm screening and prevention for your pet.  The most common signs of heartworm disease in cats are coughing, vomiting, breathing difficulties, weight loss and lethargy and are often mistaken for other conditions such as asthma, pneumonia and digestive problems. In fact, the most common clinical signs of heartworm disease in cats actually resemble bronchial asthma. The only way to know for sure is to have us examine and test your pet. This pre-emptive approach can spare your pet the pain of this often fatal disease.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Anti-freeze Dangers for Pets

 When the weather starts to cool off, be mindful of dangerous chemicals normally used during the colder seasons, especially anti-freeze. Pets actually love the taste of anti-freeze and will sneak a taste any chance they get. Wipe spills or puddles and keep this poisonous liquid away from pets.  Even a teaspoon of anti-freeze can seriously harm your pet. Signs of anti-freeze poisoning include drowsiness, lethargy and depression. Keep pets safe as the weather gets colder this season.