Simple waysto keep yourpet healthy
healthy petis a happypet, andresponsiblepet ownersknow thattheir beloved
rests largelyon the
shoulders.Ensuring apet is healthyover the longhaul can bequite simple.While somepets may develop medical conditions thatrequire more attention, the following area few simply ways pet owners can keeptheir pets healthy.
• Don’t skip visits to the veterinarian.
Unlike humans, pets can’t speak forthemselves, so it’s quite possible that
a pet could be hurting or dealing with amedical condition while its owner hasno idea. Annual veterinary checkupscan help avoid such situations, and thevet might notice a developing conditionbefore it becomes anything serious. If a
pet’s behavior suddenly changes, then
schedule a veterinarian visit as soon aspossible, as this behaviorial change couldbe indicative of a medical issue.
• Prioritize vaccinations.
Vaccinationscan protect a pet from a host of ailments,including rabies, distemper and Lymedisease. New pet owners who adopteda pet from a rescue organization should
get documentation about the animal’spast vaccinations (certied kennels
typically provide such documentationat the time of adoption). If there is nosuch documentation or if there aredocuments showing the pet receivedcertain vaccinations but not necessarilyall of its vaccinations, take the pet tothe veterinarian and have the animal
receive those vaccinations that aren’t
• Spay or neuter the pet.
The ASPCAnotes that spaying or neutering a pet is apreventive measure that can help a petin the long haul. Spaying, or removingthe ovaries and uterus of a female dogor cat, can prevent diseases, such asbreast cancer and pyometra, as well asinfection and keep the animal from goinginto heat. Neutering a male a dog or catbefore it reaches six months can reducethe likelihood that the animal will behaveaggressively while helping to preventtesticular cancer, diseases of the prostateand hernias.
• Help the pet ght heartworm.
Heartworm isn’t easy to treat, but it is
easily prevented. Cat owners shouldspeak to their veterinarian aboutheartworm and the best course ofaction, as cats are less likely to developheartworm than dogs, who are naturalhosts for the infection. Dogs should betested for heartworm annually in theearly spring, and the veterinarian mightprescribe a preventive medication the dogwill take once per month. How long thedog must take the medication dependson the dog and the veterinarian, but dog
owners should heed the vet’s advice.
• Get your pet off the couch.
Humansshould not be couch potatoes, and neithershould their pets. Regular exercise burnscalories while increasing muscle massand improving cardiovascular strength.Dog owners should know that how muchexercise their dog needs depends on itsbreed, age, sex and physical condition,so discuss a proper exercise regimen withyour veterinarian. Cats need exercise,too, and cat owners should also discuss
the specics with their vet.
t is not always easyfor pet owners torecognize whena companion animalis feeling sick. Dogsand cats can both bestoic when dealingwith illness, and unlessthere is somethingphysically apparent likea limp or a wound, petowners may have asick four-legged friendon their hands withouteven knowing it. Buta new technology isaiming to change theway pet owners areinformed about their
At least two differentinnovators have developed devices that
continuously monitor a pet’s health and alert
its owners when there is something amiss.
The Japanese information technology rm
Fujitsu announced its launch of an innovativenew device called the Wandant in 2012. This
device can be afxed to dogs’ collars, where
it can monitor their level of activity, number ofsteps taken and other health-related data. Thedata can be uploaded to a cloud or read by aphone or computer. Transitions inpet health can be monitored to makeit easier to understand any changesthat could be indicative of a healthproblem.Similarly, a start-up company calledPetPace is developing a collar that
can monitor your pet’s health and send an early
warning to you and your vet when something
doesn’t add up. The Massachusetts-based
company will produce a collar and base stationthat collects the data. There will be an initialcost for the equipment and then a monthlysubscription fee for ongoing monitoring service.According to the company, the sensors in
the collar can track the animal’s movement,temperature, respiration and pulse. There’s
also a microphone that listens for soundslike drinking, barking or stomach gurgling.Positioning and movement sensors, like thosefound in many smartphones, can even tellwhen the animal is running, laying down ortaking a bathroom break. The data is compared
to what’s normal for the breed and the animal’s
past behavior. Anomalies may alert pet ownersto something that is wrong.According to chairman Avner Schneur,the company has already been testing itstechnology at several pet hospitals. Although
hospitals will be the company’s initial focus,
PetPace will eventually sell the collar toconsumers.If your dog or cat may not be feeling well butis not exhibiting any abnormal behavior, thensome new devices might be able to alert you tothe problem to take action sooner.
Automatically keeptrack of pets’ health
Not everyanimal exhibitsobvious signsof physicalsuffering.