Dear Dr. Fox: I am reaching out to you in regards to purchasing a natural flea/tick collar for my 1-year-old Shih Tzu. We were using the Seresto brand until I saw the news about the number of deaths associated with the collars.
I went to your site and read about various cases; however, I did not see any recommendations. Please let me know what you would recommend we use. R.N., Atlanta, Calif.
Dear R.N.: I have added this statement to my website post “Preventing Fleas, Ticks and Mosquitoes”: Visit earthanimal.com to find various botanical products that help prevent fleas, ticks and mosquitoes from infesting and possibly infecting dogs and cats with insect-borne diseases.
With climate change and the documented harms of using insecticides on companion animals and risk to humans, especially children, in the home, these safe and effective alternatives are a wise choice.
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Dog summer ‘hot spots’In the summer, many dogs develop “hot spots” — weeping, red sores. Dogs often scratch and lick these sores, as well, worsening them. The most likely cause is insect-bite allergy, especially to flea bites. One flea on a sensitized dog can cause extensive allergic dermatitis, which should always be checked for when a “hot spot” is found on a dog. A flea comb can catch flea poop (digested dog’s blood) in the fur that looks like flecks of coal and turn brown-red when put on a piece of wet white paper.
Canine parvovirus vaccination reminderCanine parvovirus kills unvaccinated dogs quickly, especially puppies. More background from the Baker Institute for Animal Health at Cornell University:
“The tiny parvovirus is extraordinarily hardy. They are capable of surviving for months outside an animal, even through the winter, and are resistant to most household cleaning products. Infected dogs can shed vast numbers of viruses, making it difficult to disinfect an area once it has been exposed to an infected dog. These facts highlight the importance of isolating any dog that is infected with CPV from other dogs. Given the fact that most environments (including dog parks, lawns and even homes) are not cleaned with disinfecting products regularly, a puppy can be exposed to CPV without any warning, making the vaccine protection all the more important.”
There are several reasons this misconception cropped up. An
from the American Kennel Club shed some light on these issues. One of them is due to owners sharing pork they’ve prepared for themselves. Pork that’s been seasoned with spices and sauces can be harmful to dogs. So, too, can a pork bone that’s been exposed to these spices. Those wanting to safely feed their dog pork shouldn’t share what’s on their own plate with their pet. Raw pork can also present a danger to pets, as it can cause trichinosis, an infection resulting from the parasite trichinella spiralis larvae. As pork is rich in fat, there’s the possibility of its leading to indigestion or inflammation of the pancreas. Also dangerous for the canine pancreas are processed meats made with pork—think bacon, sausage, ham—and contain carcinogens linked to cancer. The high salt content of these forms of pork can lead to bloat, which is deadly for dogs. Additionally, among food allergies most often suffered by pups are those to rabbits, lamb, and yes, pork. With all the above taken into consideration, another
from the American Kennel Club, while not disputing the cautions above, put forth this information: Pork is a highly digestible animal protein and an excellent source of amino acids.
Email questions to [email protected] or write to Dr. Michael Fox in care of Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106. Visit Dr. Fox’s website at DrFoxOneHealth.com.
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