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January 18, 2019 0

It doesn’t rain often in California, but when it does, it pours! While staying inside with hot chocolate under the covers may be ideal for you, it probably won’t be for your dog. Certain canine breeds have too much energy to lie around all day, so they need to be stimulated even when they’re indoors. Dogs also don’t wear clothes to stay warm like humans, so unless you have a cold weather breed, it’s important to find a way to keep them nice and toasty. Because dogs can’t speak, it can be difficult to understand what they need to stay safe and healthy when the weather changes. Check out the guide below to learn how to handle rainy days with your furry friends!

Staying inside

Outdoor pets should be brought indoors on rainy days. No matter how rambunctious your dog is, it’s too cold and dangerous to leave pets outside during a storm. To keep your home clean, give your pets a bath before they romp around the house. You’ll also want to lock cabinets, hide valuables, and put fluffy, chewable pillows in a safe place.

Unlike cats, dogs don’t normally use the restroom inside. It’s doubtful that you’ll be able to train your dog to use a litter box in just a day. If it’s just drizzling, your pets can probably still go outside to do their business, but if it’s a torrential downpour, we recommend setting up a doggie station in the bathroom. Place a wee pad on some newspapers or in a box in the bathroom. These are incredible absorbent but disposable. When your dog signals they need to go, direct them to their new doggie station!

Dogs can get sick just like humans. Their fur may provide enough warmth for a cloudy day, but it may not be sufficient on a cold, rainy day. Turn on the heat in your home until the temperature is at a comfortable 68-78 degrees. If that’s not an option, you may have to bundle your furry friend in a doggie sweater and provide plenty of warm blankets on their sleeping mat.

Getting exercise

On days when it’s just sprinkling, you can actually still take your dog on a walk outside! Invest in a large umbrella, poncho, and rain booties for your dog to keep them dry in the rain. As you go along your walk, you may want to keep your dog on a tighter leash than usual to avoid getting splashed in puddles or mud!

If you’re having trouble keeping your pet(s) entertained, here are a few activities you can try at home on rainy days:

  • Tug of War: This is a fun game you can play with your dog to help them release some energy. Best part is it doesn’t require much space and all you need is a sturdy object to grab between the two of you.
  • Sniff and Search: Have your pet sniff some treats or objects and hide them around the house. It’ll be a physical and mental workout.
  • Puzzle Balls: These little balls have treats stuffed inside them, but it’ll definitely take a lot of work for your dog to get them out. It’ll give your pet a gaol
  • Obedience Training: A rainy day is the perfect time to treat your dog new tricks! You’ve got all the time in the world to show them how to roll over, stay, jump, or shake your hand.
  • Shopping Trip: There are plenty of stores and malls that are pet-friendly these days. Walk your pet up and down the aisles of an indoor shopping center for some much needed exercise.
  • Spa Day: Who doesn’t love a spa day? Groom your pets to perfection, so they’ll be ready for the outdoors once the sun comes out. You can trim fur, clip nails, and brush them to your heart’s content.
  • Boxes: Giant boxes can be a lot more fun than they seem! If you have some lying around, take them out for your pets to explore inside.
  • Hide and Seek: This game isn’t just for children. It can be fun for dogs as well!
  • Blow Bubbles: Let your pup admire and chase down a few mysterious bubbles indoors. Bubbles float slowly enough that it won’t cause a ruckus to follow them, but they’re just as fun as balls.

Dealing with thunder

Many pets are afraid of thunder because the loud sounds are startling. It can be frightening because they don’t understand what is or where it’s coming from. On the bright side, there are ways to prepare your pup and keep them calm during the storm.

One way to help your pet feel safe and secure is by providing a cozy haven indoors where they can seek shelter. Outfit their usual sleeping arrangements with soft pillows, blankets, and familiar toys. You can also get a crate or igloo, so they feel like they are in a small, safe space. Make sure to close any windows or doors that could be making the sounds more loud and threatening than they need to be.

You can also try to distract your pet during the storm. Stay by their side as you play with new toys, give them treats, or listen to music together. It might get their mind off the scary sounds and help them focus on something else. Plus, your presence is probably comforting!

If none of these work, you can always consult with the veterinarian to train your pet how to behave during thunderstorms. The vet will be able to determine what exactly is triggering your pet and how to treat that. There are also sleeping and anti-anxiety medications available to calm your dog down if worst comes to worst. Our Anaheim veterinarian at Brookhurst Animal can help figure out what’s going on and prescribe medication if needed.

Considering how dry California is, rain is always a blessing, but it can be a little burdensome if you have pets. We hope our guide can help you enjoy these days spent indoors better than before. Give us a call if you have questions or would like to book an appointment with our vet at Brookhurst Animal!

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December 17, 2018 0

Having pets requires a lot of sacrifice and commitment, but we find that our furry companions are always worth the time and effort. As many pet owners know, there are certain precautions you need to take with your home if you plan on leaving your pet at home alone or even in another room alone. Chewable cushions need to be hidden, glass has to be stored away, and any bite-sized object cannot be in reach. Recently, plants have become a popular, environmentally-friendly way to furnish your space, but certain plants can be toxic for pets. To avoid any accidents, check out our pet-friendly plant guide!

WORST PLANTS FOR PETS

Like humans, animals are naturally curious and often times, they will consume things that they really shouldn’t. Certain types can be poisonous when eaten, so to keep this from happening, we encourage pet parents to research their plants before purchasing them. Here’s are a few of the most popular (and deadly) plants that pet owners should be aware of:

Flowers

  • Azaleas: While these flowers are beautiful, they are also extremely dangerous. The deciduous plant contains grayanotoxins which can disturb the skeletal and cardiac muscle. If ingested by dogs or cats, it can cause gastrointestinal pain, heart problems, neurological illness.
  • Lilies: Even small ingestions of lilies can cause serious organ failure for cats. If you suspect your cat has consumed a lily, bring them to the veterinarian immediately.
  • Lily of the Valley: This type of lily is less toxic than true lilies, but it is still extremely dangerous to cats and dogs.
  • Cyclamen: Saponins are glycosides that can have life-threatening toxicity. The roots of cyclamen contain these irritating compounds and they can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and heart problems if consumed by dogs and cats.
  • Crocuses: These plants are highly toxic and they can cause serious organ and intestine failure. Keep species of this plant away from cats and dogs.
  • Daffodils: These sunny flowers may brighten up your room, but they’re not so great for your pets. Daffodils contain a vomit-triggering compound called lycorine that can make your dogs and cats sick.
  • Oleander: The seemingly fragile, inconspicuous flowers on oleanders can actually wreak havoc on your pet’s cardiac system. The plant is full of cardenolides that will interfere with the heart muscle’s electrolyte balance.
  • Tulips: With these flowers, the toxins are concentrated in the bulbs. Dogs and cats who dare to dig up the bulbs as chew toys may experience increased heart rates, change in respiration, and trouble breathing.
  • Hyacinths: Just like tulips, hyacinths have concentrated toxins in their bulbs. Keep them in high places to keep animals from digging them out.
  • Hibiscus: Humans may be able to enjoy hibiscus tea, but animals don’t react well to these tropical blooms. The Rose of Sharon is one specifically harmful species that can cause dehydration and an upset stomach.
  • Birds of Paradise: These avian lookalikes contain gastrointestinal irritants that shouldn’t be eaten by dogs, cats, or horses.
  • Chrysanthemums: The UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine has reported chrysanthemums as the plants that most frequently poison pets, so consider giving away your multi-petaled flowers to a friend.

Shrubs & Succulents

  • Dieffenbachia: This leafy shrub contains insoluble calcium oxalate crystals that can cause irritation in the mouth and gastrointestinal tract. It can result in drooling, vomiting, and stomachaches for both dogs and cats.
  • Kalanchoe: Also known as Mother-of-Millions and the Chandelier plant, the Kalanchoe is a popular succulent that should kept out of reach from pets. It contains cardiac toxins that can harm dogs and cats if ingested.
  • Aloe Vera: The gel of aloe vera is known to be incredibly soothing and beneficial, but it definitely shouldn’t be ingested by any means. Cats, dogs, and rabbits can result in stomach problems.
  • Mistletoe: We love getting into the spirit of the holidays, but mistletoe should be kept at a safe distance from any inquisitive pets. The berries are full of unsavory lectins, alkaloids, and polysaccharides that can be fatal in large doses.

Vines

  • English & Boston Ivy: It’s unlikely that you’ll have these sprawling plants in your house, but it’s growing on your walls or near your windows, it could cause a lot of trouble. The vines are toxic to dogs, cats, and humans alike.
  • Morning Glory: Oddly enough, these lovely blossoms are actually vines, not flowers. Regardless, they have hallucinogenic and toxic seeds. Keep them away from dogs and cats to prevent a visit to the animal hospital.

Trees

  • Wisterias: If you have outdoor pets, keep them away from wisterias. The soft, lavender blossoms are anything but gentle on those who consume them. The tree’s seeds are poisonous and they can cause nausea, dizziness, diarrhea, and vomiting.  
  • Oak: It’s no secret that oak tree leaves and acorns can be toxic to animals because of their tannic acid. This acid can cause serious kidney damage and gastroenteritis if consumed.
  • Sago Palm: In California, palm plants of all kinds are easier to breed. The Sago Palm, however, is extremely toxic to animals. If your pet ingests parts of the Sago Palm, they need to be seen by an emergency vet immediately or there may be devastating effects to their central nervous system.
  • Elephant Ears: This is another tropical foliage plant with giant, shady leaves. Though these plants aren’t fatal, they can cause terrible indigestion if cats and dogs consume the leaves or stems.

This isn’t a comprehensive list, but it does cover most popular houseplants. If your shrubs aren’t on the list, check with your local veterinarian if you need to take any precautions with your plants.

If you just can’t part with your greenery, remember to keep your flowers and shrubs in a safe place where your pets won’t be tempted to nibble on them. As plants age, their leaves or petals can also wilt to the ground, becoming accessible to pets. Make sure to sweep these up before your pets can get to them.

BEST PLANTS FOR PETS

Now on to the good news! There are also plenty of plants that are also totally pet-friendly. These greens are a great way to get cleaner air and spruce up your home a little without the risk of poisoning your canine or feline friends. Here are our favorites:

  • Fern: Specifically, Boston and Sword ferns are nontoxic and they’ll fit perfectly in the corner of a room. Other species may be highly toxic, so make sure you read the labels before you purchase!
  • Bamboo: To add some dimension to your room, add a few bamboo plants! They shouldn’t be toxic to dogs and cats.
  • Spider plants: This popular houseplant makes a vibrant addition to any household and it’s nontoxic. However, that doesn’t mean your pet won’t try to play with the long, spindly leaves. Try hanging spider plants from high places to keep your animals from wrecking your plant.
  • Echeveria: Not only is this succulent absolutely adorable, it requires little maintenance and it’s safe to keep around cats and dogs. The leaves rarely shed and it’s nontoxic.
  • Haworthia: These spiky little plants are a relative of the aloe that are relatively easy to take care of.
  • Areca palm: Add a tropical vibe to your home with the areca or butterfly palm. With good care, this plant can live up to 10 years without problem.
  • Orchids: For a beautiful, pet-friendly flower, pick up orchids. This fragrant plant can be a stunning centerpiece.
  • Barberton Daisies: If you have a green thumb, the Barberton daisy is a challenge we recommend taking. Though it’s a sweet plant, it takes a lot of effort to grow and manage. On the bright side, the flower is safe for dogs and cats.
  • Basil: Like most herbs, basil is safe for humans and most pets to consume. Plus, you can add it to your pizza once it’s fully grown!
  • Peppermint: Keep your dog’s breath fresh with home-grown, nontoxic peppermint!
  • Burro’s Tail: This unique succulent is named after a donkey’s tail because it looks just like a fluffy green tail! It’s a nice hanging plant to brighten up a room and it’s completely safe for pets.

There are plenty of other plants you can grow without worry, but make sure to check it out with a veterinarian or botanist first. While you can control your environment at home, we recommend training your pets not to chew on any types of plants at all. They could be easily be exposed to poisonous plants when they’re out and about, so the best way to avoid a pet emergency is by teaching them to avoid foreign plants altogether.

If your pet accidentally consumes a toxic plant, call a veterinarian as soon as possible. At Brookhurst Animal Medical Center, our Anaheim veterinarian is trained to quickly diagnose and treat the problem, so it doesn’t cause further damage. Give us a call if you have questions or need to book an appointment with the vet at Brookhurst Animal today!

 

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October 17, 2018 0

Now that we’re in October, it’s time to break out the pumpkin spice treats and haunted house decorations. We know the spooky celebration is tons of fun with family and friends, but this year, remember to include your pets as well. There are tons of ways that you can celebrate Halloween with your animal(s) and get them excited for the season, too. Let’s get started!

Fun Costumes for You and Your Pet

When you’re searching for the perfect costume this year, consider coordinating with your pet! There are two things to consider when choosing a costume for your pet: comfort and safety.

Try getting a lightweight costume that allows your pet to breathe and move freely. A little goes a long way! Sometimes, a few simple accessories are all you need to transform your pet’s appearance. Since pets can’t tell you how they feel, try to be conscientious of how your pet is behaving in their costume. If they’re stiff, stressed, or whining, check to the see if the costume is properly fitted. Some pets just don’t like costumes and if this is the case, it’s okay to abandon the costume idea, too.

When shopping for costumes, make sure they’re safe by keeping an eye out for the following:

  • Constriction: If the costume is too tight, it may be keeping your pet from functioning properly. If their ability to see or hear properly is impaired from the costume, you may have to make adjustments!
  • Choking hazards: Costumes may come with small attachments like buttons or ribbons can easily be consumed when they’re not supposed to be. This could be a huge problem if your pet has a habit of chewing up random objects. If there are strings or belts, they can also get wrapped around your pet, causing trouble breathing.
  • Sharp objects: Extravagant costumes could have wiring, studs, zippers, etc. that are sharp and dangerous. Blood and gore may be good decorations for Halloween night, but they’re not a cute look for your pets.
  • Excess fabric: If there’s extra fabric on your pet’s costume, like a long skirt or cape, it could cause accidents or tripping that result in unwanted injury. Try to tailor the costume, so it moves with your pet.
  • Flammable materials: Stay on the safe side and check if the materials used for your pet’s costume are flame retardant.

Pets are our partners in crime and they deserve to partake in Halloween, too! Many department stores and pet stores sell costumes for dogs and cats now. You can dress up your cat or dog as a taco, pancake, unicorn, mermaid, and more. Other animals are a little more difficult to find costumes for, but they’re definitely out there. You can even make your own! We’ve seen tons of snakes in hats, rabbits as pokemon, and pirate birds. The options are endless.

Pet-Friendly Guide to Halloween

Treats That Your Pet Can Indulge In

Halloween always gives us a good excuse to indulge in tasty treats and we think our pets deserve a few goodies, too. Here’s what our animals seem to enjoy:

Dogs: You might not want to give your pups pumpkin pie because of the high sugar content, but actual pumpkin puree is packed with fiber and beta-carotene. There are tons of pumpkin dog treats on the market or you can whip up your own. We like combining pumpkin puree with ingredients like apples, bananas, or peanut butter to change things up for our dogs.

  • Cats: Unlike dogs, cats don’t exactly have the same palate as us humans. Luckily, October is still tuna season (June – November) and you can get fresh tuna to reward your cats for good behavior. If you don’t trust yourself to prepare kitty-grade tuna snacks, there are also dried treats that you can buy in-store.
  • Birds: Honey treat sticks are a conglomeration of bird feed and seeds stuck together with honey. Even though it’s a big serving of seeds all at once, there is an element of portion control because it can be difficult to peck the food off the sticky honey. You can leave it inside your bird cage for your pets to leisurely snack away. Check with your veterinarian that all the seeds on the stick are okay to eat before you purchase one. Large seeds like pumpkin and sunflower can be hard for smaller birds to open and enjoy.
  • Small rodents: Rats, guinea pigs, hamsters, rabbits, and gerbils will adore you for treating them to a few carrots. These are a healthy, orange snack that can be eaten in lieu of pumpkin, candy corn, etc. For these creatures, a moderate amount of fresh veggies is usually more appetizing than candy or pastries.
  • Reptiles: Fake spiders and insects make creepy Halloween decorations, but real ones make even better treats for lizards, turtles, and geckos. Unlike their scaly cousins, snakes don’t eat quite as often. In fact, large snakes can eat as little as once a week or a few times a month, so you don’t have to worry about getting them snacks or treats.

Pet-Friendly Guide to Halloween

Pet-Friendly Decorations for Your Haunted House

We love setting the mood for spooky season, but we always have safety precautions in mind when we’re arranging our decorations. To pet-proof your haunted house, make sure you’ve got the following on lock:

  • Lights: Going for a Nightmare Before Christmas look? Make sure any lights you plan on stringing up are properly secured and far out of reach from your pets. You also want to protect wires and plugs from being tampered with.
  • Jack o’ lanterns: Carving out pumpkins is a fun activity that you can enjoy with friends, families, and even pets! As long as you keep sharp knives and seeds away from your animals, they make excellent models for unique pumpkin designs. When you’re ready to display your pumpkins, swap the candles for led lights instead. They’re not a fire hazard and they’ll look just as good as regular wax candles. In fact, you might want to replace all your candles with LED lights just to be safe.
  • Monsters: Skeletons, Frankenstein’s, mummies, oh my! Strategically arranged monsters are sure to inspire terror this Halloween, but your animals might not feel the same way. Instead, they’re probably seeing a giant chew toy. To keep your dogs, cats, pigs, etc. from gnawing on your Halloween decorations, bar off the areas where you’re keeping them with pet doors. You can also put unappealing scents, like ammonia or vinegar, on your decorations to ward off curious pets.
  • Cobwebs: Well-placed cobwebs can turn any welcoming home into an eerie, haunted dwelling. Try putting your cobwebs in higher areas, like the tops of bookshelves, televisions, and lights. Not only is this more realistic, it’ll keep your nosy pets from getting tangled in them.
  • Fish tank: Spice up your fish tank to reflect the spooky spirit. Cracked mirrors, jagged rocks, skulls, and faux pumpkins make for a fearsome underwater environment. We encourage fish owners to get creative, but also make sure their decorations aren’t making their water cloudy or dangerous. Stay away from anything that’s too big, sharp, or pointy. Your pet’s comfort is still of utmost priority.

In general, we advise owners to simply keep decorations away from pets. When shopping for spooky ornaments and accessories, check if there are hazard or flammability warnings, too. We all love a good scare this time of year but not from our pets!

There are tons of ways to adorn your home with Halloween decorations and these are only a few. If you’d like to share what your plans are, leave it in the comments below. We’d love to know about all the fun you and your pet are having this Halloween.

Pet-Friendly Guide to Halloween

 

At Brookhurst Animal, we advocate for pet safety no matter where you are, but we know that accidents can still happen. If you find yourself with an animal emergency, please stop by our vet’s office as soon as possible. Dr. Lopez is an experienced veterinarian in Anaheim who has been helping the community for years. Feel free to call in if you have any questions!

 

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September 27, 2018 0

We love animals of all shapes and sizes here at Brookhurst Animal. Although our veterinarian primarily treats domesticated animals nowadays, Dr. Lopez has had extensive experience with exotic creatures in the past! He’s treated all types of wild animals, like snakes and lions.

There are tons of critters freely roaming the streets even here in Anaheim. Although these animals are beautiful and deserve to be respected, they can also be dangerous to us and our pets. We’ve compiled a guide for pet owners and how to handle wild animals in Anaheim!

Street Dogs

Street dogs live in urban areas, subsisting maily off leftover scraps from garbages and small animals. Like domesticated dogs, they’re highly intelligent and they’ve learned how to survive by learning human behaviors. For example, wild dogs have learned to use crosswalks and ride subways efficiently.

Although these scrappy dogs may be adorable, they can be dangerous to people and their dogs. We advise people to avoid approaching street dogs since street dogs are not vaccinated and they could be carrying heartworm, parvo, rabies, ticks, or more. Since these dogs also don’t have owners or training, they can be difficult to control when they feel threatened. You can’t know for certain whether a street dog is hostile or not.

If you encounter a dog on the streets, do not approach it. Go a different route or wait somewhere out of sight. Most street dogs will attack out of fear, so you don’t want to trigger the dog by running towards it or kicking it. If you’re walking your dog, do not let it engage with the street dog. Use your body to block their view of each other and stand still, avoiding eye contact. Usually, dogs will not attack people who are standing calmly.

In the event that the street dog does attack, try to distract it by throwing food or a stick far away. Call animal control as quickly as possible and try to protect your face, hands, and chest. One tactic that often works is giving the dog a piece of clothing to attack rather than letting it attack you.

Pet Owner’s Guide to Wild Animals in Anaheim

Feral Cats

Feral cats are quite common in Anaheim. Unlike stray cats, who are tame and comfortable with human interaction, feral cats have adapted to wildlife and rarely engage with people. Many of these cats coexist in colonies, sharing space and food with each other. They typically keep their distance and they’re able to survive independently by hunting small animals and scavenging for scraps.

It’s improbable that feral cats will pose much of a threat to you as they are usually quite fearful of humans. However, they can be a nuisance in the neighborhood. Since they’re not domesticated, they will urinate and defecate almost anywhere which can be unpleasant for people living nearby. Feral cats are also known to carry fleas, dig holes, and fight loudly. For people with small pets like rabbits, hamster, guinea pigs, or birds, it’s important to keep them inside unless you’re supervising because they are easy prey for feral cats.

The best way to prevent feral cats from occupying areas close by is spaying and neutering them. Cats are known to breed constantly when they’re not sterilized. Since there aren’t enough homes or food to provide for them, it’s better to spay or neuter them to avoid overpopulation. Orange County offers Trap-Neuter-Return and Spay-Neuter-Return for people who would like to stabilize the feral cat population.

Opossums

These backyard marsupials are pretty common in Anaheim. Unlike cats and dogs, they’re rarely domesticated. The nocturnal creatures are mostly harmless, but they can become troublesome if they’re ruffling through your trash for scraps and digging up your backyard. Since opossums are omnivores, they can also pose a threat to smaller pets like kittens, hamsters, mice, etc.

Here are a few ways to ward off unwanted opossums:

  • Eliminate areas for them to nest and seek shelter by clearing bushes, filling potholes, removing rocks, and trimming grass evenly
  • Place locks on trash cans
  • Keep doors closed and vents covered
  • Scatter crushed garlic around the area
  • Install lights or sprinklers that are motion-activated

Opossums are also fearful of predators like large dogs and full-grown cats. Having your dog mark its territory outside and guard the premise is another excellent opossum deterrent.

Pet Owner’s Guide to Wild Animals in Anaheim

Peacocks

Believe it or not, there have been multiple sightings of rogue peacocks in the streets of Anaheim. Originally introduced from India to Los Angeles, these peacocks eventually made their way to Orange County. It can certainly be surprising to see a wild peacock in your backyard, but it’s not too uncommon here in Southern California!

These magnificent creatures certainly add vibrancy to the local scenery, but Anaheim might not be the most ideal place for them to live. Many residents have complained about the fowl shrieking in the morning, scratching vehicles, defecating, and digging up plants. Furthermore, it’s not completely safe for them to be walking around. They could easily consume harmful pesticides and rat poisons or get hurt by the feral cats and dogs.

To ward off these birds, you can sprinkle red pepper in your yard and cover plants with netting to prevent them from scratching up your hard work. You can also get a motion-sensored sprinkler or throw water at them manually. If your property has trees, make sure to keep branches clipped as peacocks often climb trees in the early mornings. Should things become too unmanageable, you can always call animal control.

Coyotes

Lions, tigers, bears, and… coyotes? Yes, there are plenty of coyotes roaming around Anaheim Hills that have made their way down to Anaheim. These highly adaptable animals have been extremely successful at surviving and spreading to urban areas throughout the US. Despite making homes in our community, it’s still rare to encounter upon a coyote in broad daylight. The animals much prefer hunting at dusk or dawn.

In civilized areas, coyotes may rely on hunting smaller, domesticated creatures. Fully grown coyotes are usually about 1.5 feet tall, 4 feet long, and around 20-50 pounds heavy. Coyotes are larger than most cats and dogs, so if there is a coyote warning, we highly recommend taking outdoor pets inside to avoid problems.

Though coyotes usually hunt rabbits, squirrels, and snakes, they are known to go after larger prey in times of desperation. Especially after the fires and drought in Orange County, coyotes have become much bolder because of their dwindling food supply.

As urban coyotes become more used to humans, it’s important to know what to do should meet one. Like their domesticated counterpart, dogs, coyotes usually won’t attack unless they feel threatened, so don’t make sudden movements that could startle them. Treat coyotes as you would a street dog – stand up straight to look larger and place a large object between the two of you if possible. You can also make loud noises to scare off the coyote if it doesn’t back off. If you encounter an entire pack of coyotes, call animal control immediately!

Pet Owner’s Guide to Wild Animals in Anaheim

Snakes

The most common snakes found in cities are garter snakes. They are small to medium-sized snakes that eat small creatures that they can hunt, such as mice, slugs, lizards, and small fish. Though snakes have a treacherous, killer reputation, garter snakes are typically harmless. Though they do produce venom, it’s such a minimal amount that it can’t hurt humans.

Rattlesnakes are also fairly common in Orange County. They’re easily identified by their tails, which have rattles at the end. Unlike garter snakes, their venom is poisonous to humans and they can even paralyze.

If you come across a snake, don’t panic. Urban snakes are usually much too small to be hunting and attacking humans. These snakes will only bite if they’re frightened. If you have small children or pets, you can call a professional service to remove the snakes or purchase a snake trap. Otherwise, leave it alone! If anything, these slithery fiends will only help get rid of household pests like rats and bugs.

Ducks, Swans, & Geese

We often see ducks, swans, and geese at the local pond or park, but sometimes, they may wander into our neighborhoods. These birds are pretty harmless, but we don’t recommend trying to provoke them or even feeding them near your home. Since most urban waterfowl are used to being fed by humans, they aren’t scared of us like other wild animals. Once they realize you have food, they won’t hesitate to chase you down!

Small children should be supervised if you are observing them. These bold birds may peck with their sharp beaks if you’re not careful. To keep your dogs and cats from chasing or hunting them, we encourage owners to keep their pets on leashes if there are wild birds around.

Pet Owner’s Guide to Wild Animals in Anaheim

 

Raccoons

Perhaps the bravest of all wild animals is the raccoon! These striped, nocturnal animals mainly eat human leftovers by sifting through garbage. These critters are notorious for breaking into homes to filch snacks and damaging property. Worst of all, they could get into fights with household pets. If you have tiny pets like kittens, puppies, gerbils, etc, make sure they’re safe from raccoons. The omnivores will eat almost anything they can get their hands on.

To prevent raccoons from infesting your home, block all entryways inside. If they’re already there, you can install one-way doorways to keep them from coming back. Place locks on all trash cans and use sensory alarms to ward them off. Bright lights, pungent smells, and sprinklers are all great ways to scare off raccoons. Many people use the scent of ammonia and cayenne pepper to repel them.

Bats

Unbeknownst to most, bats are quite populous in Anaheim. Luckily, these bats aren’t really harmful and they only come out at night. In fact, they’re a huge help in controlling the bug population and balancing the ecosystem. With the recent increase in mosquitoes, we’re actually welcoming them with open arms… or should we say, wings?

The only concern with bats is the host of diseases they might be carrying without being symptomatic. In Anaheim, bats have been known to carry rabies and SARS. These diseases can be transmitted through their feces, urine, and saliva. Make sure your curious pets and small children stay away from such substances should you come across them.

If you find a bat, don’t touch it! Either leave it be, call animal control, or if you must, use gloves and protective clothing to trap and remove it. In order to evacuate bats from living in your home or attic, you will need to call a wildlife professional. They can safely move the bats to another place. If there’s a family of bats during summer, we don’t recommend trying to relocate them until the fall. Parent bats can easily get separated from their young and lose them in the process.

Pet Owner’s Guide to Wild Animals in Anaheim

 

Squirrels

Squirrels are probably the least problematic of all the wild creatures on our list. They’re quite common in Orange County and generally appreciated by the community for their nondisruptive and adorable demeanor.

Squirrels are less of a problem for people than people are for squirrels. Dogs and cats often hunt squirrels because they are natural prey. To prevent dogs and cats from bringing home dead squirrels, practice on obedience training and keep them on the leash when out.

Wild Rabbits

Here in Orange County, you’ll find a huge variety of adorable rabbit breeds in parks, backyards, and other fields. Like squirrels, bunnies are herbivores who are unlikely to agitate your pets. They do, however, overpopulate quickly and they can lead to barren gardens full of droppings. To deter rabbits from using your backyard as an all-you-can-eat buffet, here are a few tactics to keep them out:

  • Plant strongly scented herbs such as garlic, onions, oregano, and basil
  • Keep the yard clean, so they have no place for shelter
  • Get motion-activated sprinklers or lights
  • Set up wire fences around gardens

We don’t recommend trapping and relocating rabbits because they could be traumatized and hurt in the process. If they’re really becoming a problem, we suggest hiring a professional.

Even in Anaheim, our veterinarian is tending to wildlife problems regularly. At Brookhurst Animal, we respect all animals and we encourage pet owners to do the same. If your pet has been in an altercation with a wild animal, bring them the local vet immediately. Wild animals can carry diseases that must be treated as soon as possible. Don’t hesitate to call Brookhurst Animal for animal emergencies in Anaheim or the surrounding Orange County area. We’re here to help!

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August 22, 2018 0

Orange County is full of fun activities whether you’re at Disneyland in Anaheim or touring historical landmarks in San Juan Capistrano. Not only are there amazing experiences for everyone to enjoy, the city is well known for its avid dog lovers and has tons of things for you and your dog to do as well. We highly recommend Orange County as a pet-friendly destination for families everywhere.

Aside from all the festivities that our county has to offer, there are also tons of lodging options that are pet friendly. Here are ten places you can check out for when you’re ready to check in!

#1 Kimpton Shorebreak Hotel

The Kimpton Shorebreak Hotel is located in Huntington Beach, also known as the “Dog Beach” of Orange County. According to the hotel’s policy, pets of all sizes, shapes, and breeds are invited to stay as long as they aren’t a disturbance to other guests. There is no additional fee for pets to stay at the Kimpton Shorebreak Hotel. Even better, you can request water bowls, bedding, clean-up bags, and treats for your pet!

While you’re in Huntington Beach, make sure to stop by one of the many dog friendly bars and restaurants on Main Street. You can also pamper your pooch at the pet spa or treat them to a biscuit from the local Barkery. And of course, the ocean is just a short stroll away, so definitely take advantage of California’s sunny weather and go for a splash in the water!

 

Pet-Friendly Hotels in Orange County

#2 La Quinta Inn & Suites

The La Quinta Inn & Suites are a chain of hotels that have multiple locations throughout Orange County. What’s great about that is each of their locations are pet-friendly! Whether you’re staying in Buena Park, Anaheim, Santa Ana, Irvine, or Costa Mesa, rest assured because they’ll welcome your cats or dogs at no extra cost. We do recommend calling beforehand to check if there are any limits on weight or number of pets allowed since the policy varies at each location.

For anyone staying in the Northern Orange County area, there’s tons of entertainment to be found. Guests often recommend spending a day at Knott’s Berry Farm Theme Park or seeing a joust at Medieval Times in Buena Park. We do advise that you leave your furry friends at an animal daycare rather than in the hotel room if you choose to go to any of these events. It can be boring stuck inside all day!

#3 Motel 6

For anyone looking for a more affordable but equally hospitable place to spend the night, Motel 6 has a few branches of motels in Orange County that offer free board for pets. As long as your pets are well-behaved, you can keep them with you on your vacation! You can find these motels scattered throughout Orange County in cities including Anaheim, Irvine, Santa Ana, Costa Mesa, Orange, and Newport Beach. Usually, they’re strategically positioned right in the middle of bustling downtown areas. For example, the Anaheim Motel 6 is right by the Angels Stadium and the one in Irvine is just a short distance from Irvine Spectrum, where you can take a ride on the ferris wheel for a gorgeous view of Orange County. Definitely consider a Motel 6 if you and your pet plan on exploring the bigger cities!

Pet-Friendly Hotels in Orange County

 

#4 Hotel Peppertree

This cozy, boutique hotel offers all the perks of other hotels in a more suburban region of Anaheim. The calm hotel is perfect for pets and owners alike to relax for a weekend. The staff is happy to accommodate up to 2 pets per room for $25 a night.

Just around the corner of this hotel is Dad Miller Golf Course for a calming afternoon on the range. If you want to take your dog out for a walk, there’s also a park on Brookhurst Street a little further down.

#5 Hyatt House Irvine

Flying in from John Wayne? Hyatt House Irvine is conveniently located right next to the airport. The hotel will board your pet if it is under 50 pounds or if you have two pets, they will take both as long as they are less than 75 pounds combined. Their policy for pets varies depending on how long you stay so call beforehand to get an estimate!

During your stay, you can also venture to a few of the great hikes that the city offers. Red Rock Canyon, Turtle Rock Viewpoint, and Quail Hill Treehead are just a few places to get started. Irvine also boasts a well kept dog park called Central Bark which is great for socializing with other dogs and dog enthusiasts. When you’re out and about, don’t forget to hydrate and stay in the shade!

 

#6 Blue Lantern Inn

This Dana Point Bed and Breakfast is the perfect, cozy destination right by the beach. At Blue Lantern Inn, you can keep up to two dogs per guest room with a reservation and $65 fee paid in advance. They do have limited pet-friendly rooms, so call well ahead of time.The inn offers breathtaking views of the ocean and access to tons of pet-friendly restaurants, trails, and the gorgeous Dana Point Caves.

#7 Hilton Hotel

Not only is the Hilton a well known, upscale hotel, it’s open for pets! For a $50 fee, you can keep up to two pets in your room as long as they are less than 75 pounds combined. There are multiple branches of the hotel in Irvine, Costa Mesa, Anaheim, and Santa Ana.

Pet-Friendly Hotels in Orange County

 

#8 Renaissance Newport Beach Hotel

If you have smaller pets, Renaissance Newport Beach Hotel might be the perfect place for you. You can keep two pets up to 50 pounds cumulatively per room for a flat rate of $50. The hotel boasts beautiful decoration, modern architecture, and friendly staff who are happy to help you with your pets.

A fantastic event for dog-owners in Newport Beach is the annual Corgi Beach Day, where all corgis and their owners meet up for a day of fun in the sun. Similarly, Yappy Hour is an event that’s hosted monthly by local establishments for owners to their dogs mingle and play with each other. There’s also Muttropolis located at Fashion Island if you’d like to pamper your pooch at a fancy dog boutique.

#9 Red Lion Hotel

At Red Lion Hotel, two pets of any size are allowed to stay with a nominal fee of $15. The hotel is right by downtown Anaheim. Guests can easily bring their pets to the Packing House or La Palma dog park in their spare time.  

#10 Air BnB

If all else fails and you don’t think any of these hotels are a good fit, tons of people welcome guests into their homes via Air BnB. Simply filter out all the pet-friendly options and send the owner a message about precious pet beforehand. Orange County is full of animal lovers, so we have no doubt you’ll be able to find the perfect place to stay.

No matter where you choose to stay, Orange County has tons to offer you and your pet(s). Remember that in hotel rooms, hostels, or Bed & Breakfasts, dogs and cats shouldn’t be left alone too long. If they get restless or anxious, they could do serious damage to the property and leave you with huge fees to pay afterward. Worse, they could hurt themselves or others! To avoid such scary situations, keep your pets safe and healthy when traveling with supervision and preparation.

If you find yourself needing a veterinarian during your stay, Brookhurst Animal Medical Center is a veterinary practice located in Anaheim and we are here to help. We know animal emergencies can be stressful and unexpected. We’re here to make those situations more manageable and help your pet no matter what.

Pet-Friendly Hotels in Orange County

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July 24, 2018 0

Pets are a lot of work. From having to keep them clean to cleaning after their messes, dogs and cats can become a huge commitment, but you may also find your life very disorganized after getting a pet. Many American households may find themselves with a variety of animals, from dogs to reptiles. Cleaning after them and keeping an organized structure may become difficult when you don’t know the ins and out of living with mini pigs, birds, cats, reptiles, and such.

Don’t fear, maintaining your pets is not as hard as you think. Here is a list of tips that help when trying to live an organized life when your household has cats and dogs.

To stay organized with multiple pets, it’s best to separate and organize all pet belongings. It starts with veterinary organizing appointments to bedding designation; pet living must be kept organized to help the owner and pet’s happiness.

Organization for Cats and Dogs:

Medication and Record Organization:

We, humans, keep files of paperwork of our health records, taxes, and other necessary paperwork, so why don’t we have a place for our pet records? Pet records include adoption records, traveling paperwork, veterinary visit history, microchip records and any other documentation needed to keep your pet safe and healthy. Keeping separate folders that contain information for each pet will help in case of any unexpected event.

Many pets require medication given to them daily. Organizing the medicine will make it easier to administer medication and lower the risk of feeding the wrong medication. Making it a part of your everyday routine will make it easier to remember to give it to your pet

Organization Tips for Living with Multiple Pets

Pet Supplies and Toys Organization:

It starts with just one squeaky ball, but suddenly, toys and pet supplies multiply, and soon, you are tripping over chew toys and stepping into your dog’s water tray. It is important to remember to maintain pet belongings just as organized as you maintain yours.

  1. Separate Feeding Location: If there is ever tension between your pets when they eat next to each other, it might be a good idea to provide a separate feeding location to avoid food hostility. This will allow peaceful eating because all pets have different styles of how they eat their food. It is also recommended to pick an appropriate location to store your pet’s food bins.
  2. Storing and Separating Pet Toys: Our pets are very territorial, so providing separate toys for each pet will decrease the possibilities of disagreements between pets. We don’t know how many toys we own, but having a selected place where all of them end up at the end of the day will make cleaning less stressful. This also lowers the chances of losing your cat’s favorite feather toy!
  3. Litter Box: Provide a litter box for each cat. Cats will appreciate you for their clean litter box. If you want to go the extra mile, train your cat how to use the toilet!
  4. Multiple Beds: It all starts with a success ful slumber. Providing Multiple Beds around the house will allow each pet to have their space that will enable them to nap and rest. When there is a lot of sharing that needs to be done between the pets, it is helpful to give each pet something that is just theirs. Providing multiple beds will also make the sofa less tempting for your pets.

 

Organization Tips for Living with Multiple Pets

 

Additional Organization Tips:

 

 

Protecting Furniture

There is that one thing that we all hate as dog owners: dog shedding. Some shed excessively, leaving hair everywhere. One way to maintain it is by placing fleece blankets and throws around your home. This gives your living room a trendy look that also hides the hair. If you are allergic to pet hair, you can control your pet allergies with an air purifier. 

Achieving Control

Depending on the canine you own, at times you may find yourself trying to accomplish a task, but your three pets running around the house can make it very difficult. Having baby gates will provide a space for the dog and allow you to cook or clean without complications.

Lastly, more pets mean more fun times, love, and attention! Not just more messes. Make sure you, as an owner, are prepared to provide the quality of care each pet desires.

Difficulties may arise when a household fosters several pets, but the memories and love are unmeasurable. Organize and maintain for your pets as you would for your belongings, and this will help keep an organized life while owning several pets. Organize your next pet appointment with Dr. Lopez, an experienced veterinarian in Orange County, to make sure your pets are healthy and happy! 

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July 16, 2018 0

Does This Human Make Me Look Fat?

Approximately 2 out of 3 American pets are considered overweight or obese. According to a 2017 study from the Association of Pet Obesity Prevention, 56% of cats and 60% of dogs are overweight due to poor diet and lack of exercise. Despite the recent push toward healthy, balanced eating for humans, there has been significantly less information about how to improve the diet and lifestyle of some of our most beloved family members, our pets. Without nutritious food and exercise, animals can easily develop costly and even life-threatening health problems such as diabetes, kidney dysfunction, respiratory disorders, or worse.

How to Know Your Pet is Overweight

The first step to solving pet obesity is identifying pet obesity. Your dog’s pot-belly might be kind of adorable, but could it also be a sign of poor health. Sometimes, it can be difficult to differentiate between a little puppy fat and a serious underlying problem. Here are a few symptoms of pet obesity you can keep an eye out for:

 

Addressing Pet Obesity in America

  • No palpable rib cage                 
  • Lethargy
  • Shortness of breath
  • Overeating
  • Weight gain
  • Waddling

Like humans, all animal body types are different, so make sure to do your research on the healthy size for your pet’s breed. Some dogs are naturally lean and others are perfectly healthy couch potatoes. If you’re still not sure, you can always take your pet to a veterinarian for a professional evaluation.

What to Feed Your Pet

Unfortunately, there are few regulations on pet food to ensure animals are receiving the nutrients and vitamins they need. A lot of products in the market are low-quality and unhealthy for animals. Many owners are unaware that their cat or dog’s favorite food is the animal equivalent of eating junk food with little nutritional content. Check the ingredients before you purchase any pet food.

Avoid the following:

  • BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole), BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene), and ethoxyquin are artificial preservatives commonly used in items like chips, cereal, gum, fast food, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetics. While these preservatives can be harmless in small doses, experts recommend limiting the consumption of them because they might have low doses of potentially toxic content. It’s better to stay on the safe side and opt for a brand with minimal or no synthetic preservatives, especially if you’re feeding your pet the same thing every day.
  • Simple carbohydrates such as white flours, corn flour, and corn syrup can be unhealthy for humans and animals alike when consumed in excess. They cause a quick spike in blood sugar and don’t fill the stomach for long, which may lead to overeating. For animals like dogs and cats, who are primarily carnivores, it’s unhealthy to be eating more filler carbs than healthy protein. When these animals have too much sugar, it can have harmful effects in the long run.
  • Meat, meat-product, rendered fat, or meat byproduct are seemingly harmless, but these names typically indicate low-grade processed meat. These vague terms could mean anything from expired meat and sick animals to unwanted parts such as hooves, organs, or intestines.

Ingredients to look for:

  • Easily identifiable sources of protein such as lamb, chicken, beef, and fish are optimal for cats and dogs who need a protein-based diet. These should be the first few ingredients listed in the food. A meat source followed by the word “meal” is also a sign of quality protein.
  • Whole grains such as brown rice, quinoa, and oats can be healthy for dogs and cats. The complex carbs in whole grains are a soluble fiber that keeps your pet full and help with digestion. They can be really healthy in moderation.
  • Vegetables such as carrots, green beans, and broccoli provide nutritious vitamins and minerals that can boost the immune system. While they’re not necessary, they have many health benefits and add flavor to pet food.

To improve your pet’s diet, take a second to read the ingredients label on pet food and treats the next time you go shopping. You can also get some fresh ingredients to cook for your dogs and/or cats! It’s not 

 

as expensive and time-consuming as it seems and it can definitely benefit your pet to have some variety in their diet. Lastly, stop feeding your animals table scraps! The extra calories  add up and more often than not, human food isn’t healthy for dogs and cats.

Addressing Pet Obesity in America

 

How to Feed Your Pet

 

How you feed your pet is almost as important as what you feed your pet. Portion control is really important to regulating diet. Overeating can result in digestive problems, choking, or bloating. When dogs or cats eat t

 

oo fast, they ingest large amounts of air, resulting in discomfort and even vomiting. In the worst case scenario, they may develop Gastric Dilation Volvulus, which is when air expands in the stomach and ruptures.

Luckily, there are many ways to avoid this problem. If your pet eats dry food, you can scatter food on the floor, so your pet has to eat each piece separately. This method is only viable, however, on clean hardwood floor or concrete. You don’t want your pet ingesting any harmful chemicals, dirt, or other objects.

There are also plenty of slow feeder bowls that are designed with obstructions in the bowl your dog will have to eat around, slowing them down. For cats, puzzle balls are a great option for both mental stimulation and controlled eating. The food is placed in a ball with food inside that the cat must move around for the food to fall out of the holes. A simple way to slow down your pet’s eating is to feed them more meals in smaller quantities throughout the day.

How to Exercise Your Pet

The exercise required to maintain a healthy lifestyle depends on your dog or cat’s breed and age. Ask your local veterinarian to assess just how much is appropriate for your pet. For obese animals, so much exercise all at once can be laborious, so owners may have to slowly incorporate more and more exercise into their pets’ daily routines with time.

Typically, 30 minutes to two hours a day is a good amount of exercise for dogs. Take your dog for a walk, play a game of fetch, or go swim! It’ll be good for both you and your pup to head outside for some fresh air and outdoor activity. If you’re located around Anaheim like us, we have a list of fun things to do for you and your dog to do right here in Orange County.

Unlike dogs, cats have extremely high metabolisms that allow them to lounge about without too much consequence. Nevertheless, you should still consult your veterinarian about a fitness plan for your cat, especially if they’ve been getting a little pudgier than usual. For most cats, aim for around 15 minutes of exercise. Get some toys like yarn, a laser light, a wand, or a ball. Kittens can actually be trained to go on walks similar to dogs, but that does require proper training and equipment. Cats like to climb, so getting a cat tree could encourage your cat to exercise more.

Pet obesity is no joke! It can lead to tons of expensive, painful health issues later down the road such as liver disease or osteoarthritis. Just because your little buddy is somewhat fluffier than normal, that doesn’t necessarily make you a bad owner. Now that you know, there are numerous ways to prevent and treat obesity for pets, so they can live the long, healthy lives they deserve. If you’re worried about your pet, it’s never too late to ask your veterinarian for a checkup, pet food recommendations, and an exercise plan. If you have more questions about pet obesity, Dr. Lopez is an experienced veterinarian in Orange County who can answer your questions and help your furry friend.

Addressing Pet Obesity in America

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June 27, 2018 0

Growing up, it’s pretty normal to feel completely uncomfortable in your own skin sometimes – it’s just a part of growing up! Some reptiles and bugs bring a whole new meaning to that saying, however. As they grow, it’s common for these animals to simply crawl out of their old skin. If you’ve noticed a change in your pet’s appearance and behavior such as discoloration, lack of appetite, or cloudy eyes, they might be shedding their skin! Here’s why and how you can help them through this natural process of growth.

What is Shedding?

The skin is an organ that continuously grows with the rest of the body. Molting or shedding is the process of regenerating new skin cells and discarding old skin cells. While humans are able to regenerate or shed skin unconsciously, other animals don’t shed quite so gracefully. Unlike humans, some reptiles shed layers of skin in large quantities periodically. Other creatures such as snakes and exoskeletal bugs may shed all their skin at once, which is called ecdysis.

Animals That Shed

Snakes are a popular example of animals who undergo ecdysis. According to Cascade Kennels, snakes can shed their skin fairly regularly, from 4 – 12 times a year. Snakes shed as they mature, so younger snakes that are actively growing shed more than older snakes. As snakes begin to shed, their skin becomes dull and dark. Since the old skin includes spectacles that protect the eyes, the snake’s eyes will fill up with liquids between the old and new skin, making their eyes look white and blue.

To remove the skin, snakes will normally rub against different objects, but snakes can come across issues if the temperature is too dry. Humid conditions help the skin rub off smoothly, so if you have a pet snake that is struggling to shed its skin. It can be a good idea to measure and adjust the humidity in its environment.

Lizards shed their skin in pieces, so don’t be alarmed if you find a giant slab of skin in your lizard’s tank! The skin will naturally fall off the body, but lizards can also exfoliate their skin off by rubbing against rocks or branches. Like lizards, turtles and tortoises also shed skin in pieces, especially around their neck, legs, and head. As their shells grow, their scutes (plate-like scales) peel and flake off. You can learn more about turtle shell peeling here.

It is common for animals undergoing shedding to be irritable and lose their appetite. Concerned pet owners shouldn’t worry too much about the change in temperament or shedding. You can leave your pet to shed skin naturally for the most part. If you think something is truly amiss, contact your veterinarian for professional help.

Problems with Shedding

Shedding can be a laborious process if conditions aren’t ideal for your pets. Here are a few things that may signal a trip to the vet:

  • Sores from rubbing
  • Stiffness
  • Algae blockage
  • Shell rot
  • Partial shedding (for snakes)
  • Extremely frequent shedding (for turtles)

No matter what species you own, it’s important to keep an eye on your pet to make sure there is no abnormal shedding or infection occurring. Our veterinarian, Dr. Lopez at Brookhurst Animal Medical Center in Anaheim, can assess whether your animal is having problems shedding. For snakes and lizards, he can speed along the shedding process for snakes by carefully bathing the snake in water for an extended period of time. For turtles, it’s quite the opposite. Too much time in the water could lead to infections or mold which Dr. Lopez can also treat. While it’s possible for pet owners to attempt the same procedure, it is generally advised to see a professional because shedding is such a sensitive process. Ultimately, it depends on the situation. Check out this article about reptile molting or give your local vet a call to learn more.

Shedding is a normal part of a reptile’s growth, kind of like puberty with the weird skin and cranky disposition. It’s also a good indicator of your pet’s general health. Too much molting? They might be overfed. Too little molting? They might be malnourished. Either way, now you have a better understanding of your scaly friend and you’ll know what to do at these crucial stages of growth (which is mostly nothing). Happy shedding!

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June 19, 2018 0

In the opening scene of The Secret Life of Pets, we watch as a French poodle has had enough of the classical music his owner has been playing throughout the morning. The French poodle quickly changes the music to heavy metal the minute his owner leaves for the day. He then starts jamming, headbanging to heavy metal while it blasts through the speakers. Although this is just an animated movie, a question arises. Do dogs enjoy music and more importantly, do they enjoy the music their owners enjoy playing?

We listen to a lot of music in our households. There is always music playing through the house; it can be coming from the kitchen while a meal is being prepared or in the bathroom while we pretend to be America’s next top pop star. Now, have you ever stopped and wondered, does my dog care about the music I play and how loud I play it?

A Dog’s Hearing

A dog’s sense of hearing is ranked second right after their sense of smell. A canine’s sense of hearing is four times better than the average human. Dogs can hear the frequency of 40 to 60,000 hertz, while a human can hear the frequency of 20,000 Hertz.  This means that sounds that can be acceptable for humans may be uncomfortable for many dogs.

It is easy to look around and agree that all human ears look the same. For dogs, that isn’t the case. Dog ears can differentiate in size, shape, or the amount of hair. There’s the prick-eared wolf, bat-eared corgi, drop or pendant eared basset hound, V-shaped ear vizsla and many more. It may be easier for a greyhound with rose ears to listen compared to a bloodhound with folded ears. This is just because of the fur that surrounds the ear and how the ear lays on the dog.

Not to show off, but while a human may be able to wiggle their ears, a dog has 18 muscles in each ear that makes it possible to wiggle, tilt, raise or lower, and rotate their ears. You may ask yourself how your dog heard the mailman way before he was right at your doorstep. Dogs can move their ear around to locate and focus on sounds.

Do Dogs Listen to Music?

Research conducted by Deborah Wells, a psychologist at Queen’s University Belfast shows that dogs do behave differently in response to the different music that is being played. Dogs seem to act relaxed with classical music and seem to bark and seem tensed with heavy metal. So, you may ask why it is that in The Secret Life of Pets, the French poodle seems to hate classical music but enjoys heavy metal? Is it because the French poodle is being rebellious and won’t listen to anything his owner listens to? Is it because dogs can have a sense of understanding when it comes to music and the poodle in the movie has his specific music taste?

Although music for humans is psychological, there have been studies that show that animals do share the same capacity for music as humans. An animal psychologist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, tells us that dogs enjoy “species-specific music.”

Species-Specific Music: Tunes specially designed using the pitches, tones, and tempos that are familiar to their particular species.

You heard it here folks, dogs might as well have the ability to form their own music taste! And we thought dogs couldn’t get any cooler! Of course, this doesn’t mean that your dog has the same music taste as you do. Actually, for most animals, the music we play throughout the house is unrecognizable. Just like the hertz between humans and dogs are different, so are their vocal ranges and heart rates. Our vocal ranges and heart rates are the reasons we like certain music, and because dogs’ and humans’ vocal ranges and heart races are so different, the music we play is simply just not meant for the ears of dogs.

What Music Does My Dog Enjoy?

If you have an anxious little pup or a huge bulldog, classical music does soothe dogs! Lower frequencies calm the canine nervous systems. Dogs generally like music that is soothing.

Now, don’t go home and play classical music all day long, as you can see in the scene of The Secret Life of Pets, classical music does get boring and heavy metal may be needed. Just remember, some sounds that can be acceptable for humans may be uncomfortable for many dogs.

At Brookhurst Animal Medical Center, Doctor Carlos Lopez would be happy to help figure out if your loved furry one is having difficulties with their pinna or if the music being played at home is the problem.

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May 30, 2018 0

Rabbits can make great pets – they’re cuddly, small, and downright adorable. However, it’s important to understand that they are also a huge investment. Like any other pet, these creatures require lots of space, time, attention, and resources to care for them.

With that being said, there are a lot of rabbit breeds available if you are interested and prepared to take on the responsibility of a pet rabbit. According to the American Rabbit Breeders Association, there are 49 distinct breeds of rabbits with different characteristics from their ears to their fur. Our veterinarian at Brookhurst Animal Medical Center, Dr. Lopez, is trained to treat bunnies, and he has a special place in his heart for the little critters. From his experience, here are a few unique types of rabbits that stand out the most. Some are rare while others are common and make excellent companions. Check out our list of notable rabbit breeds!

  • Lionhead Rabbits: The Lionhead Rabbit is a new breed of dwarf rabbit that originated in Belgium. Its name is derived from its lion-like, wool mane around its head. These intelligent creatures can be trained to use litterboxes and follow basic commands. They can also be incredibly social and energetic pets. If you plan to adopt a Lionhead (or any rabbit at all for that matter), it’s important to have lots of outdoor space for your pet to explore and exercise.
  • Angora Rabbits: There are four different types of Angora Rabbits, but they all share the same long, silky Angora wool. These fluffballs are generally easygoing and playful. Like other rabbits, they are high maintenance creatures. Owners should be especially careful of wool block, which is a condition that rabbits may develop from ingesting their own hair as they groom themselves. Since Angora Rabbits have especially long, thick fur, they’re more susceptible to this condition, which can cause loss of appetite and major digestive problems. Dr. Lopez recommends monitoring your rabbit’s stool and regularly grooming its long fur.
  • Colombian Pygmy Rabbit: The Colombian Pygmy is the smallest member of the rabbit family, with adults averaging around 1 pound each. Unfortunately, you probably won’t be able to own this little bun as a pet because they’re an endangered species due to the loss of their natural sagebrush habitat. However, you can appreciate them in all their tiny glory at the Oregon Zoo, where experts are working to breed and conserve their species in the wild.
  • Volcano Rabbit: As original inhabitants of the volcanos in Mexico, this round rabbit breed gets its name from its interesting home. Unlike other members of the rabbit family, they have short, brown fur and have tiny ears. They’re also known for making a high-pitched squeal to communicate rather than thumping. Unfortunately, they are also an endangered species and it’s improbable that you’ll be able to adopt one.
  • Sumatran Striped Rabbit: The Sumatran Striped Rabbit is known for its striking appearance, namely the distinctive brown stripes on its coat. Unlike the other balls of fluff, this breed is long, lean, and muscular. Little is known about the incredibly rare, nocturnal bunny except that it is intelligent and elusive. The Sumatran Striped Rabbit is so rare, it’s only been sighted a few times and most people are unaware of its existence at all. Unfortunately, as humans continue to destroy Indonesian forests for resources, this rabbit breed faces the threat of extinction from habitat loss.

Rabbits come in all different shapes and sizes. If you’re interested in raising one of your own, make sure you’re properly educated on rabbit care first. Despite how cute and gentle they are, bunnies are the third most abandoned pet after cats and dogs, according to the National Geographic. A great option is to check out the local animal shelter and adopt a rescue rabbit. These extraordinary animals also require medical attention from a veterinary specialist. At Brookhurst Animal Medical Center in Anaheim, Dr. Lopez provides specialized care for exotic pets like rabbits. If you’re ever in need of a rabbit vet in Anaheim, feel free to stop by.

 

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Sat April 27 – 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sun April 28 – Closed
Mon April 29 – 9:30 am – 6:30 pm

EMERGENCY PLEASE CALL FIRST SO WE KNOW YOU ARE COMING.

© 2017 Brookhurst Animal Medical Center
1301 S Brookhurst St, Anaheim, CA 92804 | 714-776-7387
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