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Could You Be Overfeeding Your Pet?

Royal Canin training at Northwest Pet Clinic At Northwest Pet Clinic, we continuously invest in the professional development, training, and education of our team. Whether it’s through continuous education courses, breakfast seminars, private one-on-one training, or other outside sources, our team is continually enveloped in training. This not only makes them a greater asset to us but to you as well. When you bring your pet to Northwest Pet Clinic, you can be confident that our knowledgeable team is well prepared to handle your questions and concerns, or that they can help point you to the correct resources.

We are very fortunate to have Rocco Pelino, from Royal Canin, come educate our staff about the importance of pet nutrition. Did you know that you may be overfeeding your pet and not even know it? For example, if you give your dog 2 slices of ham, that’s the equivalent of you eating a chocolate glazed donut with sprinkles. If you gave your dog 3 oz of bacon strip treats, that’s the equivalent of you eating FOUR chocolate glazed donuts with sprinkles! So if you’re already feeding your dog 100% of the amount of food that he or she is supposed to be getting on a daily basis AND you’re adding treats on top of that, you may be overfeeding your dog and not even realize it.

According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, an estimated 54% of dogs and cats in the United States are overweight or obese. We know that you are a responsible pet owner and implore you to continuously develop and grow in your knowledge and understanding of the care that your pet requires. We encourage you to have a conversation with one of our vets about the importance of a healthy and well-balanced diet and how to achieve it. Let’s learn and grow together, aiming towards a common goal: providing a lifetime of compassionate, high quality care for your pets.


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Everything You Never Knew You Needed to Know About Heartworms

Heartworms: We hear about them a lot and know they’re a danger to our pets’ lives. But what are they, really? We’ve put together a short guide to heartworms to help you understand the danger and how you can prevent heartworms from affecting your four-legged friends.

What are they?

Heartworms are transmitted to dogs and cats by mosquitoes. Wolves, foxes, coyotes, sea lions, and even humans can also carry heartworms. When a mosquito bites a mammal infected with heartworms, the mosquito picks up heartworm larvae. The next time the mosquito bites a mammal, it deposits the larvae into that mammal’s blood stream. The larvae mature and travel through the animal’s blood stream. They can grow up to 12 inches in length, and their ultimate destination is the animal’s heart and pulmonary arteries. Heartworms create permanent damage by moving through an infected animal’s veins.

In dogs, heartworm symptoms generally don’t show up for about six months. Those symptoms include coughing, sluggishness and fatigue, a decrease in appetite, and weight loss. The symptoms are more visible in dogs that are active or have pre-existing health problems. The longer the heartworms go untreated, the more likely they are to cause cardiovascular collapse or caval syndrome by blocking the dog’s blood flow. A dog is likely suffering from caval syndrome if he or she has difficulty breathing, her gums are pale, and her urine is dark and blood- or mud-colored. At this stage, the only way to save the dog’s life is by having surgery to remove the heartworms.

In cats, heartworm symptoms are less visible and heartworms are often only detected when the cat collapses or dies suddenly. Cats may have heartworm symptoms if they are coughing, have breathing problems that resemble asthma attacks, are vomiting, lack appetite, and have been losing weight. If the heartworms go untreated, the cat can have trouble walking and might faint, have seizures, or retain fluid in his abdomen.Without treatment, heartworm-infected dogs may live 5 to 7 years, and cats may live 2 to 3 years.

How common are they?

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4 Reasons to Scoop Your Pet’s Poop (for Analysis)

Northwest Pet Clinic - The Importance of a Fecal ExamYour pet is scheduled for a routine veterinary exam—or maybe he or she is having a particular health problem, and you’ve decided to take your pet in to see what’s going on—and you are asked to do the unthinkable: to bring in a fecal sample.
If you aren’t already used to following your pet around with a plastic bag during walks, the thought of doing so—and much less keeping your pet’s feces in a bag in or near your home—may be cause for discomfort.

But the minor inconvenience you suffer to collect a fecal sample may make all the difference for major discomfort in your pet. Here are four reasons why fecal samples are such an important part of veterinary care.

Gastrointestinal parasites.
Parasites can make your pet really, really sick. Not only that, but there are many different types of parasites your pet can contract: hookworms, whipworms, roundworms, and liver flukes, to name a few.

Your pet can easily pick them up while licking something outside, drinking contaminated water, or from contact with infected animals. Luckily, fecal samples make it easier for veterinarians to locate parasites. This means faster treatment and less overall discomfort for your pet.

Gut-upsetting critters.
Parasites aren’t the only evildoers who can take up residence in your pet’s gastrointestinal tract. Single-celled organisms, such as coccidia and Giardia, bacteria like salmonella, and viruses such as parvovirus and coronavirus, as well as tapeworm, can also be found there.A fecal analysis can help your vet identify these creatures if the stool is abnormal or has an increased amount of bacteria.

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