Mistletoe Poisoning

Filed Under: Dogs, Cats, Diet & Nutrition, Poisoning

As much as we may like to kiss under mistletoe, we humans don’t usually eat it. But our pets may have other ideas.

Poinsettias: Pretty or Poisonous?

Filed Under: Dogs, Cats, Poisoning

Thinking of throwing out that poinsettia the florist just delivered since you have pets in the house? That is probably not necessary. Although poinsettia poisoning has gained a lot of press, they are not all that toxic.

Poinsettias (Euphorbia pulcherrima) are also known as the "Christmas flower" or "star". They are a popular plant used as decoration around the holidays from November through December. The plant is actually a shrub and has brightly colored red, white or pink terminal leaves while the lower leaves remain green in color.

Canine Roundworms

Filed Under: Dogs, Parasites

The canine roundworm or Toxocara canis is the most common parasite seen throughout the U.S. Roundworms are a spaghetti-type worm that are passed out in the stool. The occurrence of roundworms is especially common in young puppies and their nursing mothers.

Symptoms of infection include mucoid diarrhea, stunted growth, and an unthrifty coat. The most characteristic symptom is that of a pot-bellied appearance. Less commonly pneumonia, intestinal obstruction and even death may occur. Pneumonia may result from the third stage larva that migrates through the lungs.

Michael Vick and the Problem of Dog Fighting

Filed Under: Dogs, Practice Stories

Finally there is an issue that unanimously crosses partisan lines: the issue of dog fighting. Atlanta Falcons Quarterback, Michael Vick, has forced society to confront this sinister practice head on.

Helicobacter Gastritis and Ulcers in the Ferret

Filed Under: Pocket Pets, Diseases, Ferrets

Ferrets are often kept as laboratory animals for the study of Helicobacter mustelae, a bacterium implicated in the development of gastritis and ulcers. Helicobacter species of bacteria have been implicated in disease production in various animals and man. Disease is usually associated with stress.

Stressful situations for the ferret may involve the introduction of a new ferret or pet to the home, moving to a new home, or lack of exercise and playtime when a ferret is constantly kenneled.

Protect Your Cat From Toxic Black Mold

Filed Under: Cats, Poisoning

Hurricane and flood damage have recently brought exposure to black mold (Stachybotrys chartarum) to the forefront. Today most insurance companies try to exclude mold damage from coverage. Mitigation of mold is commonly the most costly consequence of water damage. Water staining to wood and sheetrock may appear unsightly, but it is the often hidden damage incurred from mold lurking underneath that is of greater concern.

Feline Leukemia Virus

Filed Under: Cats, Diseases

Feline Leukemia is a retrovirus. As a member of the retrovirus family, the feline leukemia virus’s genetic material is transmitted as RNA. Once the virus infects the cell, DNA copies of the virus are transcribed and these copies are inserted randomly into the host’s genetic material. Once the DNA is integrated within the genome, any cell division that occurs will cause both of the new cells to contain the virus.

Lack of Sex in a Female Ferret Can Be Deadly!

Filed Under: Pocket Pets, Ferrets, General Care

Female ferrets reach sexual maturity at 4-8 months of age, typically in their first spring following birth.Female ferrets undergoing their first heat cycle may prove it to be their last heat cycle unless spayed or bred.Ferrets are induced ovulators.Induced ovulation refers to the fact that the female ferret will remain in heat or estrus until such time that they are bred or are artificially stimulated to ovulate.

Bites from Reptile Prey

Filed Under: Reptiles, Diet & Nutrition, General Care

Bite wounds most commonly occur in reptiles when live rodents are left in cages with a reptile that does not want to eat the rodent, regardless of the reason. The rodent will then often gnaw on the reptile. Rodents may also bite in self-defense when they are seized by a reptile in any manner that fails to induce immediate death. Wounds made in self-defense tend to involve the head, mouth and face of the snake.

Catnip and other Cat Attractants

Filed Under: Cats, Behavioral & Training, General Care

Natural cat attractants include more than 100 plant species that produce terpenoid-based organic chemicals that elicit responses from domestic cats. Of these plant species, a herb known as catnip is the most appealing attractant to most cats. Catnip or catmint (Nepeta cataria) is a perennial herb in the mint family Labiateae. Approximately 70 to 90% of all cats possess the genetic ability to respond to the active ingredients in catnip. The scent is the primary attractant.

Dr. Susan named best vet in Northeast Alabama!

Critterology.com's primary contributor, Dr. Susan Muller Esneault, has been named for best veterinarian in northeast Alabama!

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