Cedar Pet Clinic Blog

How Will You Celebrate National Mutt Day?

Animal activist Colleen Paige pushed for the recognition of National Mutt Day on July 31 and December 2 each year because she felt it was important enough to celebrate twice. The purpose of National Mutt Day is to highlight the reality of puppies and dogs with mixed parentage. Unfortunately, mixed breed dogs left at shelters and/or euthanized far more than their purebred counterparts.

Celebrate National Mutt-Day

National Mutt Day, also known as National Mixed Breed Day, encourages people to consider the many benefits of dogs like labradoodles and cockapoos and to adopt one from a shelter. 
  
Is a Mixed Breed Dog Right for Your Family?
A mutt is no different than any other type of dog who offers love and loyalty to her family. It’s simply a matter of consideri

ng your lifestyle and deciding on the right pet. While it can cost thousands of dollars to adopt a purebred dog from a professional breeder, adopting a mixed breed from a shelter is much more affordable. Your adoption fee covers your new dog’s medical exam, vaccinations, and sterilization surgery while in the care of a shelter. 

Of course, it can be challenging when you’re uncertain of your dog’s heritage or background because you’re not certain what to expect with behavior and health. If your newly adopted pet is still a puppy, you might not know how big he will grow as an adult. The good news is that you can overcome these challenges with our help. When you bring your dog to Cedar Pet Clinic Lake Elmo for the first time, we will determine his breeds if you haven’t already and provide you with plenty of information to take good care of him.

Help Spread the Word About Lovable Mutts
You may not be able to adopt a mixed breed dog from a shelter right now and that’s okay. No one should make an impulse decision about something so important or take on a dog that won’t fit into their lifestyle. You also don’t want to surprise someone with a pet. Fortunately, people who loves dogs and want to see every dog find a home can help dispel myths about those of mixed parentage. They are valuable and make just as good of pets as purebreds.

If you decide to adopt a mixed breed dog this month, please schedule a check-up with us as soon as possible. Our staff will make sure that your new friend gets off on the right paw with your family.

Five Common Myths About Rabies

 

Thanks to mandatory rabies vaccination laws and widespread compliance, rabies is not the prevalent disease that it once was. Even so, it is a deadly and frightening disease. People often fear what they don’t understand, and rabies is no exception. We encourage you to learn the truth about rabies so you can feel confident you’re doing everything possible to protect your pet. We debunk five of the most common myths about rabies below.
 
Don’t Believe Everything You Hear About Rabies

Many people believe that an animal who is bitten by another animal with rabies doesn’t have the disease until the infection spreads to the brain. The reality is that your pet would have rabies from the moment of contact with an infected animal. The disease has an incubation period ranging from 10 to 60 days. Not only does the infection reach the brain in that time, it can also spread to your pet’s central nervous system and muscle tissues. The location and severity of the bite can affect the length of the incubation period and where the infection spreads.Five Common Myths About Rabies
 
Unfortunately, a bite from an animal infected with rabies is not the only way your pet can acquire it. The other animal can transmit rabies just by having saliva on the claws and scratching your pet. Many pet owners are unaware of this and continue to believe a direct bite is the only method of transmission.

Another common fallacy people believe about rabies is that stray dogs are the only carriers. Any unvaccinated pet can potentially be a carrier, as can wild animals such as foxes, wolves, and racoons. 

The media often portrays a dog with rabies foaming at the mouth, which means some people are only familiar with this symptom. This is a late-stage rabies symptom and animals this far advanced need to be euthanized for their comfort and the safety of others. A domestic pet infected with rabies will show other symptoms long before this. The most common ones include abrupt changes in behavior, lack of appetite, seizures, disorientation, and paralysis in the hind legs. 

Protect Your Pet Today
The myth we really want to put to rest at Cedar Pet Clinic Lake Elmo is that getting a rabies vaccine is painful for your pet and causes serious side effects. While a vaccine could cause mild effects such as fatigue, this passes quickly. We check your pet’s rabies vaccine status at every preventive care exam and give a shot or booster accordingly. The mild discomfort she may feel is much better than acquiring the painful, deadly disease of rabies.
 
Image credit:  SasPartout | iStock / Getty Images Plus

Could Your Dog or Cat Have Hot Spots?

Acute moist dermatitis is a skin condition in dogs and cats that develops in response to bacteria and moisture. It’s more commonly known as hot spots. If your dog has this common problem, you will probably notice him biting, licking, or scratching the area to make it feel better. This doesn’t work and can make the hot spot even more uncomfortable. Allergies to outdoor allergens, grooming products, fleas and less commonly food are common causes of hot spots, as are bites from a tick.
Hot Spots
Although your dog or cat can get hot spots any time of year, they’re more prevalent in the summer months. Animals get overheated too, but they don’t sweat like we do. This creates a moist and warm environment for bacteria to develop and grow. We encourage you to stick to a consistent grooming schedule for your pet as this can help you detect hot spots sooner or even prevent them in the first place. 
  
How to Know if Your Pet Has Hot Spots
In addition to intense biting, licking, or scratching mentioned above, dogs and cats with hot spots typically exhibit some of these symptoms:
  • Red, scaly, or raised scabs
  • Skin around the hot spot appears red or brown
  • Unexplained swelling
  • Unpleasant odor coming from a specific area on your pet’s body
  • Oozing or pus-filled sores
Please contact us for an immediate evaluation if you notice some or all of these symptoms. We also check for hot spots during your pet’s routine physical examination.

Hot Spot Treatment and Prevention
Regular grooming and practicing year-round parasite protection are both essential to prevent hot spots. Matted fur attracts moisture and parasites, so be sure to keep it combed and free of knots. Occasionally, a pet develops hot spots due to biting, licking, and scratching caused by a behavioral concern rather than having moisture and bacteria on the skin. We can help you whether the cause is a medical or behavioral one.

When the staff at Cedar Pet Clinic Lake Elmo notice a hot spot on your dog or cat, we trim the fur surrounding it and use a mild anesthetic to clean in. We may prescribe cortisone cream for pets who can’t seem to stop itching. We can also recommend parasite prevention and grooming products to help you keep your pet as comfortable as possible this summer. After all, it’s a short season and we want to see both of you enjoy it. 
 
Image Credit:  dimirek / iStock / Getty Images Plus

After-Hours Emergencies

After Hours Veterinary Care
1014 Dale Street North
St. Paul, MN 55117
(Inside Como Park Animal Hospital just north of downtown St. Paul)
24-hour care for multiple species
651-487-1941

Animal Emergency & Referral Center of MN
1163 Helmo Avenue N
Oakdale, MN 55128
651-501-3766

 

Animal Emergency & Referral Center of MN
1542 7th St. W.
St. Paul, MN 55012
(located 2 blocks east of 35E)
651-293-1800