Dogs keep dying: Many owners remain unaware of toxic pet food,
Cornell News Service, January 6, 2006
Even though Diamond, Country Value and Professional brand dog foods have been recalled for containing highly toxic aflatoxins, they have caused at least 100 dog deaths in recent weeks, say Cornell University veterinarians, who are growing increasingly alarmed. <more>
College of Veterinary Medicine develops protein tests to accurately diagnose pet food-poisoned dogs,
Cornell News Service, January 6, 2006
While dogs keep dying from eating pet food tainted with aflatoxin, Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine is announcing it has developed protein tests that accurately indicate a dog's liver failure caused by the toxin. <more>
UPDATE 1/5/2006, 4:00 p.m.
UPDATE 12/23/2005, 2:00 p.m.
Cornell animal hospital caring for dogs poisoned by contaminated commercial food that has killed several pets, Cornell News Service, December 23, 2005
At least 14 dogs from the Rochester area have suffered liver damage and several have died after eating commercial dog food contaminated with a fungal toxin, according to veterinarians at Cornell University's Hospital for Animals at the College of Veterinary Medicine, where seven dogs are being treated for food poisoning. <more>
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For vomit, urine and feces (human or pet), use the following procedure:
Immediately blot (do not rub) up any excess liquid with a white paper towel. For non-liquid stains, gently blot up excess stain.
I have personally found that sometimes these Expert steps...don't work. Especially if the dog had caught a critter, ate it, and the fresh raw diet didn't agree with my domesticated dog...therefore they BARF'd onto my carpeting.
For those Special RR Stains, I have used the following on wall to wall carpets:
I now purchase large Area Rugs that are 100% olefin cut pile. I've used full strength Clorox bleach and never changed the colors of the carpet on 100% olefin. Not as beautiful as the soft plush....but in my home where we 'live with 4 to 8 dogs' on any given day.....it makes perfect sense.
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Chocolate contains theobromine, a compound that is a cardiac stimulant and a diuretic.
When affected by an overdose of chocolate, a dog can become excited and hyperactive. Due to the diuretic effect, it may pass large volumes of urine and it will be unusually thirsty. Vomiting and diarrhoea are also common. The effect of theobromine on the heart is the most dangerous effect. Theobromine will either increase the dog’s heart rate or may cause the heart to beat irregularly. Death is quite possible, especially with exercise.
After their pet has eaten a large quantity of chocolate, many pet owners assume their pet is unaffected. However, the signs of sickness may not be seen for several hours, with death following within twenty-four hours.
Cocoa powder and cooking chocolate are the most toxic forms. A 10-kilogram dog can be seriously affected if it eats a quarter of a 250gm packet of cocoa powder or half of a 250gm block of cooking chocolate. These forms of chocolate contain ten times more theobromine than milk chocolate. Thus, a chocolate mud cake could be a real health risk for a small dog. Even licking a substantial part of the chocolate icing from a cake can make a dog unwell.
Semi-sweet chocolate and dark chocolate are the next most dangerous forms, with milk chocolate being the least dangerous. A dog needs to eat more than a 250gm block of milk chocolate to be affected. Obviously, the smaller the dog, the less it needs to eat.
The danger of Macadamia Nuts
Macadamia nuts are another concern. A recent paper written by Dr. Ross McKenzie, a Veterinary Pathologist with the Department of Primary Industries, points to the danger of raw and roasted macadamia nuts for pets.
The toxic compound is unknown but the affect of macadamia nuts is to cause locomotory difficulties. Dogs develop a tremor of the skeletal muscles, and weakness or paralysis of the hindquarters. Affected dogs are often unable to rise and are distressed, usually panting. Some affected dogs have swollen limbs and show pain when the limbs are manipulated.
Dogs have been affected by eating as few as six macadamia kernels (nuts without the shell) while others had eaten approximately forty kernels. Some dogs had also been given macadamia butter.
Luckily, the muscle weakness, while painful, seems to be of short duration and all dogs recovered from the toxicity. All dogs were taken to their veterinary surgeon.
Pets owners should not assume that human food is always safe for pets. When it comes to chocolate, onions, garlic and macadamia nuts, such foods should be given in only small quantities, or not at all. Be sure that your pets can’t get into your stash of chocolates, that food scraps are disposed of carefully to prevent onion and garlic toxicity and that your dog is prevented from picking up macadamia nuts if you have a tree in your garden.
Onion and garlic poisoning
Onions and garlic are other dangerous food ingredients that cause sickness in dogs, cats and also livestock. Onions and garlic contain the toxic ingredient thiosulphate. Onions are more of a danger.
Pets affected by onion toxicity will develop haemolytic anaemia, where the pet's red blood cells burst while circulating in its body.
At first, pets affected by onion poisoning show gastroenteritis with vomiting and diarrhoea. They will show no interest in food and will be dull and weak. The red pigment from the burst blood cells appears in an affected animal's urine and it becomes breathless. The breathlessness occurs because the red blood cells that carry oxygen through the body are reduced in number.
The poisoning occurs a few days after the pet has eaten the onion. All forms of onion can be a problem including dehydrated onions, raw onions, cooked onions and table scraps containing cooked onions and/or garlic. Left over pizza, Chinese dishes and commercial baby food containing onion, sometimes fed as a supplement to young pets, can cause illness.
Onion poisoning can occur with a single ingestion of large quantities or
with repeated meals containing small amounts of onion. A single meal of
600 to 800 grams of raw onion can be dangerous whereas a ten-kilogram
dog, fed 150 grams of onion for several days, is also likely to develop anaemia. The condition improves once the dog is prevented from eating any further onion
While garlic also contains the toxic ingredient thiosulphate, it seems that garlic is less toxic and large amounts would need to be eaten to cause illness.[Back to top]
Dermatitis involving the ear is an inflammation of the pinna (external
part of the ear lying outside of the head. Eczema--characterized by
itching, redness, discharge, desquamation, and even fissuring leading to
secondary infection--frequently affects the pinna and ear canal.
Recurrences are common. There are a variety of causes of ear dermatitis,
ranging from infections to parasites to trauma.
Parasitic - Mange (demodectic, otodectic, sarcoptic and notoedric) and
Allergy (food, contact)
Cold Agglutinin Disease
Lacerations, burns, chemical injury
Secondary to disorders within the ear (foreign body, tumor, etc...)
Hyperadrenocorticism (Cushing's disease)
Solar (sun-related) dermatitis
Seborrhea (dry, scaly skin)
Since there are so many different causes of ear dermatitis, diagnosis, treatment and affect on the animal will vary.
What to Watch For
Scratching and rubbing of ears
Pain around the ears
Hair loss on the pinna
Baseline tests, including a complete blood count (CBC), biochemical profile and urinalysis, are usually within normal limits. Additional tests may be necessary to determine the underlying cause of the ear dermatitis.
The treatment depends on the underlying disorder.
Dilute aluminum acetate solution (Burow's solution) is applied as often
as required. Itching and inflammation can be reduced with topical
corticosteroids. Topical antibiotic therapy as described above for
diffuse external otitis may be needed occasionally. An underlying middle
ear infection, if present, must be controlled with cleaning and use of
appropriate topical and systemic antibiotics.
Hormone replacement therapy
Home Care and Prevention
Follow all instructions given to you by your veterinarian. If your pet
has a recurrence of signs, contact your veterinarian at once. The best
way to prevent ear dermatitis is to remove any offending substances from
the environment. Limit sun exposure and feed hypoallergenic diets when appropriate
This is also a very good site to check. Case 1 is about pigs...however, this is the same thing that can occur in dogs:
Basically the diagnosis was mites - Sarcoptes scabiei (can be
transmitted to humans)
Superficial pyoderma, a skin infection known to veterinarians as
pyotraumatic dermatitis and to dog owners as hot spots. Hot spots are
surface skin infections caused when populations of normal skin bacteria
grow and overwhelm normal resistance. They are generally circular
patches that lose hair, can be swollen, may exude a smelly pus, and can
be painfully itchy, causing the dog to scratch, lick, or bite to the
point of self-mutilation.
Finding the cause of the Hot Spots are more critical than stopping them.
Hot spots can be caused by anything that irritates the skin and initiates an itch-scratch cycle, but the most common irritants are fleas. Other causes are allergies (flea, inhalant, food), ear infections, parasitic disease (sarcoptic and demodectic mange), anal gland disease, poor grooming, tick and mosquito bites, burrs, and summer heat. Dogs most susceptible to hot spots are those with heavy coats.
Dogs in warm, humid climates may develop hot spots when they shed their
undercoats if the dead hair is trapped next to the skin, and dogs with
behavior problems may mutilate themselves by licking and thus encourage
an infection to become established.
If the underlying cause is allergies, begin an aggressive campaign to
rid your home and yard of fleas and work with your veterinarian on a
plan to reduce allergy triggers for your pet. Household dust, plant
pollen, lawn chemicals, and diet can all cause allergies.
Informational/Rev: 2004/Kissi[Back to top]
Here's a Recipe for a yard deodorant to help with those unpleasant smells:
Mix About 2 c. Listerine original formula (the amber colored stuff that feels like battery acid in your mouth) and 2 oz green Palmolive liquid dish soap in a pump sprayer. Added hot water to make 2 gallons
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Heartworm Medication Recall
September 3, 2004–The FDA has recalled Proheart 6, a twice-a-year heartworm medication for dogs. Thousands of dogs have had negative reactions to the shot, including as many as 500 deaths. For more information, visit the FDA website.
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