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June 22, 2017 0

Its the time of the year when it gets pretty hot in Orange County. For our guinea pig parents we want to share some tips on keeping your guinea pigs cool over the summer. To start things out we have this great graphic by When Guinea Pigs Fly.
Preventing Heat Stroke for Guinea Pigs this Summer

The list above does a great job sharing all the different things you can do. We also want to take this time to review why this is so important for guinea pigs.

Heat Stroke is a Common Health Issue for Guinea Pigs

Guinea pigs are sensitive to extreme temperatures. They can catch a cold when its too cold and develop heat stroke when its too hot. Remember too that it isn’t just outside where guinea pigs can develop heat stroke.

They can also become dehydrated and overheated indoors. If your guinea pig is in direct sunlight they are in danger of heat stroke.

Unlike humans where heat stroke can happen over a long period of time, guinea pigs do not have the same luxury. When its too hot, guinea pigs only need 10 – 15 minutes before they start suffering from heat stroke.

Temperatures above 80 degrees Farenheit can cause heat stress or heat stroke

In Anaheim, the average summer temperature in Anaheim can go from 78 to 89°F. This means that heat stroke is something our local community members need to look out for.

How to Spot the Symptoms

Signs of heatstroke include:

  • Laying in a stretch out position or on their side
  • Rapid breathing, panting and drooling
  • Dehydration
  • Lack of energy and inability to move
  • Seizures, convulsions and increased heart beat

Keys to keeping your guinea pig safe is to remove their cage/aquarium away from direct sunlight or any other heat sources.

What You Can Do to Prevent Heat Stroke

When temperatures are hot, the most important things to remember is to remove the guinea pigs from any environment that is too hot. If the guinea pigs are outside, take them inside.

If you cannot immediately take them inside, make sure the guinea pigs stay in a cool, shady area. Ensure that they stay hydrated as well.

When your guinea pigs are in their cage or acquariam is near a fan or anything that is providing cool air circulation. However, it is extremely important not to point fans directly at guinea pigs as this can cause Upper Respiratory Infection.

In addition, you can use ice packs or anything frozen to help cool down the guinea pig. Wrap the ice pack, or whatever you choose, in a cloth or newspaper. Guinea pigs can then lay down on the surface and cool their bodies down.

And just like humans, when it is hot for us we drink more water. Same thing for guinea pigs. Ensure that there is ample, cool and clean water for guinea pigs to drink.

What to Do If You Think Your Guinea Pig is Suffering from Heat Stroke

If your guinea pig is already exhibiting signs of heat stroke, your guinea pig is probably already in critical condition. It is important to act fast.

Your number 1 priority is to cool your guinea pig down. If they are outside or in direct sunlight, immediately take them inside away from the source of heat.

To cool down your guinea pig, put a cold wet towel around their body. Other options include putting the guinea pig in cool water. It is important to not put them in ice cold water. That can shock the guinea pig and cause a cold or worse.

You can also get a spray bottle and spray am mist of cool water and also give the guinea pig cold water to drink.

Once you’ve cooled them down, you want to make sure to allow them to relax and recover. Put them in a quiet, dark and cool place. Preferably you want to place them in an area where they are use to and comfortable with. This way the guinea pig’s stress is minimized and they have time to get themselves together from the ordeal.

If your guinea pig becomes unresponsive that is when it is important to take your guinea pig in for medical attention.

How to Know When to take your Guinea Pig in for Veterinary Attention

If your concerned about heat stroke, its best to take your cavy in immediately. Like we mentioned earlier, guinea pigs have a much smaller body that us. Their bodies can react to extreme temperatures immediately.

Without cooling down your guinea pig, they are susceptible to continual seizure and other violent symptoms. So when transporting the guinea pig to the vet, its also important to keep the guinea pig cool during the car ride.

As we all know, cars get hot. You should not under any circumstance leave your guinea pig in the car on a hot day. Make sure the A/C is on and that the car is cooled down.

 

 

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April 7, 2017 2

When you bring pets into your life, it can be difficult to keep your home feeling and smelling clean. We love our furry friends, but as soon as they enter our hearts, they begin wreaking havoc on our homes. It could be hair all over our furniture, muddy paw prints running up and down the stairs, or even just the smell!

Keeping Your Home Clean When You Have Pets

Whether you live in the suburbs on the east side, or the cozy apartments of central Anaheim it can be difficult to keep our homes tidy. Owning pets is one of the most rewarding experiences that life has to offer us, and we would do anything to keep them. Even though it may seem impossible to keep our homes clean, there are some things that we can do on a regular basis to make it easier to keep our homes spotless.

Cleaning Up All That Fur

  1. Regular Grooming
    If you can take your dogs or cats in to the vet or groomer’s for a regular brushing, then great! But if not, then it is good practice to brush through your pet’s coat a few times a week. This preventative measure will help stop your pet’s hair from shedding inside your home. If you have cats, regular brushing also helps prevent other health problems related to their health, such as hair balls and constipation. Try to do it outside at a time when your dog or cat is relaxed. While this may sound time consuming, the benefit is that your furry friend’s hair is less likely to end up on the floor or on the furniture.
  2. Vacuuming & Mopping
    In the past, we’ve relied on traditional brooms and dustpans to clean up after our pet’s hair. Vacuums are also great options to quickly clean up small spaces, but who has the time to do that every day? Some of technology’s newest toys can help out here if you are someone who likes a clean house but doesn’t enjoy pushing around a heavy vacuum every day. A Roomba, for example, is a small robot vacuum that can navigate through the floors of your house, essentially picking up all the fur and dust left behind but your furry friend. Another quick option could be a Swiffer mop, which is a low-maintenance tool for picking up small messes on your floor.

 

Keeping Fido Clean

The obvious solution to keeping your house clean is by keeping your pets clean. Easier said than done, right? Experts suggest that dogs should be bathed only once a month, to prevent drying out the oils in their skin. Unfortunately this means that we can’t bathe them every single time they start to smell. Other options for keeping our pets clean without having to give them a bath are:

  1. Pet Wipes – Using pet grooming wipes to clean your furry friend is quick and convenient. It’s a great way to prevent him or her from smelling between baths. Even baby wipes could work as an alternative!
  2. Dry Shampoo – You may have discovered dry shampoo for yourself – it’s convenient for when you just don’t have time to wash your hair before work. Dry shampoo is also available for animals, and it’s useful in removing that “pet smell” that Fido might get between baths.
  3. Freshening Sprays – Another way to freshen up your furry friend without bathing him or her is with freshening spray. Sprays are great to use when you are brushing your pet’s fur coat.

As cute and lovable as our pets are, they are horrifically messy. Having a tidy home is essential to maintaining good health for everyone who lives there – you, your family, and your pets. It isn’t impossible to have a clean house when you own pets, and a little extra work can go a long way when you follow these tips and tricks.

 

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March 21, 2017 0

We know how important it is to take good care of our teeth. Our dentists constantly remind us about the importance of maintaining healthy habits for oral care. On the other hand, when we bring a new pet into our lives we go straight to thinking about what we will feed them, how often we have to take them out for walks, and where they will sleep.

Taking Care of Your Pet’s Teeth

One of the most important parts of keeping your pets healthy is by taking care of their teeth – and not just because of how bad their breath can get. Periodontal disease is one of the most common diseases that pets face, and it can cause them pain and discomfort that they just can’t tell you about. What’s worse is that once your pet develops a dental disease, waiting too long to take care of it could result in an enormous bill to fix the problem.

Caring for your furry friend’s teeth is no easy task, but it’s essential to their overall health. Keep reading the following tips and tricks to learn about how you can protect your pet’s teeth.

  1. Make Sure They Are Comfortable
    When you bring your pets home, it is important that you get them comfortable with people handling their mouth or muzzle area. If they aren’t comfortable, you risk getting bitten and you may not be able to check up on their teeth in the future.
  2. Choose Quality Pet Food
    There are some great brands of pet food out there, and many of them offer dental health benefits. Some treats can not only help clean your pet’s teeth, but also serve as entertainment – those chewable treats could keep them busy for hours!
    When considering options for what to feed their furry friends, many pet owners opt for dry food. This can benefit your pet’s smile by scraping off bacteria from the teeth, preventing plaque from building up.
  3. Brush Their Teeth Regularly
    As humans, we’re taught to brush our teeth at least twice a day for best results. Our pets also need to have their teeth brushed regularly as well, at least once a day or a few times each week.  In order to effectively brush your pet’s teeth, start by building up to it and getting him or her comfortable with you touching their mouth. You should also set a time when he or she is most comfortable, and try brushing at that time every day.
    The toothbrush that you use can either be a human toothbrush, or one that is specific to the type of animal. It is essential that you choose a pet-friendly toothpaste, and it must be safe to swallow.
  4. Consider Dental Care Alternatives
    No time to brush? A good start to cleaning your pet’s teeth is to wipe his or her teeth and gum line to clean away bacteria, dirt, or food. While it’s no alternative to a thorough brushing, it’s certainly better than nothing.
  5. Visit Your Veterinarian
    If you are one of the 95% of pet owners, you probably don’t brush your pet’s teeth. For this reason, it is especially important that you bring your pet in for a professional cleaning. To get a thorough cleaning for your pet, see your veterinarian for a dental check up at least once a year. However, if you notice any of these symptoms in your pet, it is strongly advised that you bring them in sooner.

In order for our beloved pets to live long and happy lives, it is very important that we take care of their teeth! Taking the extra steps to prevent dental diseases will save you from the trouble of dealing with worse problems later. Your pets deserve to be pain-free and have beautiful, healthy smiles. For any questions about dental health for your pet, feel free to contact Doctor Lopez at Brookhurst Animal Medical Center in Anaheim or schedule an appointment today.

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March 14, 2017 1

If you have been thinking about getting a dog or cat, you’ll be happy to hear about the benefits of having a furry friend. Here in Anaheim, we are always running around and trying to keep up with the constant activity of everyday life. Some of us feel like we can’t get a pet, whether it’s because we are too busy or because our home isn’t big enough.

Those who have pets already know how much they can improve our lives – the unconditional love and cuddles from our pets is enough of a reason! Our pets can make us feel happier and improve our social lives, as well as decrease our stress levels. When you’re living in the kind of hustle and bustle community that Anaheim is known for, we need to take every opportunity that we can get to relax and de-stress.

While those alone are some great reasons for getting a pet, animal-ownership can offer many other benefits:

I. Emotional Support

If you’re ever feeling down, having a pet can improve your mood and emotional state in many different ways. Studies have shown that pet ownership can improve overall mental health, and decrease your risk of depression. Having a furry friend can fight off feelings of loneliness. Pet owners also report having a greater sense of purpose.

II. Heart Health

Opening up your home to a pet can also improve your overall heart health. Pet owners find themselves with a decreased risk of heart attack and stroke, lower cholesterol, and lower blood pressure. Studies have also shown that pets – particularly dogs, cats, birds, and rabbits – are able to detect changes in their owner’s blood sugar. This is especially helpful for people who are diabetic and need to monitor their blood sugar levels.

III. Physical Health

One of the lesser known benefits of owning a pet is that it can boost your immune system. For children, being around animals can also prevent the development of allergies.

When you get a pet, it is important that you take them out for regular walks or runs. In doing so, you are also doing yourself a favor by getting outside for some fresh air and physical exercise! For those of us living in the heart of Orange County, we could use any excuse to get outside. Being responsible for a pet will definitely keep you on your feet and on your way to a healthier lifestyle.

There you have it! Opening up your home to a furry friend will benefit you in many ways. In case you needed any more of a reason, Doctor Lopez at Brookhurst Animal Medical Center in Anaheim is your go-to veterinarian in Anaheim. He will be sure to take good care of the new addition to your family.

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