Sunday, March 04, 2007


A dog's normal temperature ranges between 101¡F and 102.5¡F. A body temperature of 103¡F (or slightly higher) is considered a fever, but is not always a sign of illness. Variations of one or two degrees from the norm can occur as a result of the dog's emotional state, activity or the environment.
Always use a human rectal thermometer, never an oral one, which could break. Shake it down to 96¡F or below and lubricate it with Vaseline or K-Y Jelly. Digital thermometers are preferred because they are easy to read and beep when ready.
It is easier to take a dog's temperature if you have help. If possible, have someone hold the dog's hindquarters so you can hold the tail and the thermometer. Lift the tail gently and slide the lubricated tip in to the anus. You will feel the rectal muscles resist and then finally relax. Talk to your dog calmly and soothingly. After three minutes, remove the thermometer and check the temperature.
If you are alone, grip the dog's lower body under your arm. With the same hand, lift the tail. Use your other hand to insert the thermometer.
A fever over 105¡F may indicate heatstroke. Call your veterinarian or an emergency pet hospital for help. You must give the dog a cold-water bath or shower immediately to lower body temperature. Never place a thermometer in a dog's mouth!


What to do if your dog is choking
Additional Information:The American Veterinary Medical FoundationDog Owner's Guide
Signs that your dog is choking include convulsive coughing, choking noises, open mouth, protruding tongue and pawing at the mouth.
You may be able to dislodge a blocking object by application of a modified Heimlich maneuver. Position yourself behind the dog and wrap your arms or hands around the abdomen, beneath the rib cage. Apply a quick and forceful squeeze.
Try this several times. If not successful, thump the dog's chest several times on both sides with cupped hands. An alternative (providing the dog is small) is to hold the dog by the scruff of the neck and the hind legs. Turn the dog upside down and shake vigorously for one minute.
It will not take long for a choking dog to lose consciousness. Once it does, you will have approximately 60 seconds to examine the back of the mouth and throat before the heart stops beating. Extend the head and neck forward, open the mouth and pull out the tongue. Use a flashlight to examine the throat for foreign objects and remove any foreign object that you find (making sure you are not pulling on the internal throat structure).
Do not attempt to retrieve an object by projecting your finger into the dog's throat. This will only lodge the object further down the throat.


What to do if your dog is rescued from drowning
Additional Information:vetmedicine.about.comAmerican Kennel Club

Dogs are excellent swimmers but can drown if they become exhausted or fall through ice. If your dog is drowning in a lake or pool, send for help and then try to reach the dog with your hand. If you must swim to the dog, take a floating device with you. Grab your dog by the tail or back of the neck, or let it grab on to the float. Swim back to shore.
Once you have reached the shore, hold the dog upside down by the hocks. Give a few sharp shakes to drain excess water from the lungs. Lay the dog on its side. Make sure there is no debris in the mouth. If the dog is not breathing, administer artificial respiration. If there is no heartbeat, apply CPR. When the dog is conscious, wrap it in a blanket. If the dog was rescued from ice water, treat it for hypothermia.
(Scroll text for information on CPR and first aid for hypothermia.)
CPR (when heart beat & breathing stops)
The same CPR technique used for humans can be adapted to save the life of a dog. CPR will provide heart contractions and breathing until the dog can perform these functions on its own. Heart and respiratory failure can occur after a trauma such as an electric shock, poison ingestion, a car accident or shock caused by a trauma. (If there is massive external or internal bleeding, CPR will not be effective since there is not enough fluid in the blood vessels to carry oxygen.)
CPR should not be performed on a dog that has a heartbeat. Nor should you perform artificial respiration on a dog that is already breathing unless the breaths are very unsteady and shallow. Watch the dog's sides to see if the chest is rising and falling.
Visual signs of no heartbeat include fully dilated pupils and cool, blue colored gums. Get familiar with pulse points on your healthy dog. Knowing how a normal heartbeat feels will help you in the event of an emergency.
If there is no heartbeat and no breath, CPR must be given to the dog. You will have to manually compress the heart and administer artificial respiration, one immediately after the other. A rhythm must develop between the heart compression and the artificial respiration.
An unconscious dog may become aggressive when it revives. Apply a muzzle -- always. You can use a strip of gauze, a strip of sheet, a necktie or even a sock. Wrap the cloth around the snout and tie under the jaw. Pull the ends back on each side of the dog's neck and tie behind the head. If the dog starts to vomit, remove the muzzle and reapply when he is finished.
Administer CPR as follows:
Lay the dog on its side. If there is no back or neck injury, pull the head and neck forward.
Open the dog's mouth and pull the tongue forward so it does not block the throat. Clear the mouth of any debris with your fingers and close the dog's mouth. Recheck the pulse.
Hold the dog's mouth and lips closed. Apply a muzzle.
Inhale and put your mouth over the dog's nose, forming an airtight seal. Exhale. Repeat the process 10 -15 times per minute.
Remove your mouth and apply heart massage in between breaths.
Place the heel of one hand over the dog's chest (in line with the back of its elbow). Place the heel of your other hand on top of the other.
Pump firmly and briskly. Hold each push for two counts and release for a count of one. (Use pressure appropriate for the size of the dog.)
Continue the massage until the heartbeat returns. Continue artificial respiration until the dog begins to breathe. If the dog does not respond after 15 minutes of CPR, revival is unlikely.
Hypothermia (Cold Injury)
Exposure to cold temperatures, especially if the dog is wet or ill can cause the onset of hypothermia. Symptoms include shivering, lethargy and eventual unconsciousness. The body will feel cold to the touch. Breathing is slow and shallow.
First aid starts with drying the dog and placing it in a warm place. Do not put the dog too close to a fire or heat source. Heating the dog too quickly can cause shock. Be careful not to burn the dog's skin. In the case of newborn puppies or if the dog has collapsed, place in warm bath water. When the puppy or dog is warm, remove it and dry thoroughly. Make sure the water does not become cooler than the dog or it will extract heat from the dog's body. Keep the dog in a draft-free, warm room for several hours. Warm liquids or warm food may be offered.

*~No No Plants/First Aid*~

PLANTS (assorted common household and garden plants)
Additional Information:Protecting your pets from poisonAmerican Veterinary Medical Association
Dieffenbachia, Philodendron & Caladium can cause problems in the dog's upper gastrointestinal tract. Do not induce vomiting. Give milk or water to rinse the dog's mouth and throat. Take the cat to the veterinarian immediately.
Amaryllis, Daffodil, Mistletoe, Tulip, Wisteria, English Ivy, Alfalfa, Beech, Iris, Bird of Paradise, Crown of Thorns, Honeysuckle, Castor Bean, Nightshades & the Potato's green parts and eyes cause irritation in the lower gastrointestinal tract that can lead to death. Induce vomiting (give 1 teaspoon syrup of ipecac or 1 tablespoon of a 1:1 mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water). Follow with a crushed tablet of activated charcoal. (Activated charcoal tablets can be purchased at a drug store and should be kept in your pet's first aid kit.) Take your dog to the veterinarian immediately.
Foxglove, Lily of the Valley, Oleander, Monkshood & Larkspur affect the dog's cardiovascular system. The digitalis glycosides in these plants have a severe depressant effect on the heart. Take your dog to the veterinarian immediately.
Yews, Tobacco, Hemlock, Rhubarb, Belladonna, Jimsonweed, Chinaberry & Morning Glory affect the dog's nervous system. Induce vomiting (give 1 teaspoon syrup of ipecac or 1 tablespoon of a 1:1 mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water). Take the dog to the veterinarian immediately. Specific antidotes may be needed to counteract the effects of the poisonous chemicals found in these plants.
If you discover that your dog has been eating a houseplant or suspicious outdoor plant call your poison control center and get veterinary help. If you don't know the name of the plant, take a sample of it to the veterinarian.
To prevent plant poisoning do not keep poisonous plants in your home or yard. Keep dried arrangements out of reach. Be sure your puppy has plenty of safe chew toys.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Ten Most Common Pet Poisons

Each year, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center receives tens of thousands of calls involving animal exposures to potentially poisonous substances. In 2005, the Center managed more than 100,000 calls pertaining to a seemingly inexhaustible variety of items. Below is a compilation of the types of calls that the Center assists with, listed in order of the frequency reported:

Human Medications: In 2005, more than 46,000 calls involving common human drugs such as painkillers, cold medications, antidepressants and dietary supplements were managed by the Center. "Ingestions of certain medications could be very harmful or even fatal to pets," cautions Dr. Steven Hansen, Senior Vice-President of the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. "Owners should never give their pet any medication without the direction of a veterinarian, as even 1 extra-strength acetaminophen can be deadly to a cat, and just 4 regular-strength ibuprofen can lead to serious kidney problems in a 10-pound dog." Medications should always be stored in a secure cabinet above the counter and out of the reach of pets.

Insecticides: Over 21,000 cases pertaining to products used to kill fleas, ticks and other insects were handled last year. "While there are products for eliminating fleas, ticks and other pesky bugs that are safe for use in households with pets, a key factor in their safe use is reading and following label instructions exactly," advises Dr. Hansen. "Some species of animals can be particularly sensitive to certain types of insecticides, so it is vital to never use any product not specifically formulated for your pet." It is also a good idea to consult with your pet's veterinarian before beginning any flea and tick control program.

Rodenticides: In 2005, approximately 6,900 calls about rat and mouse poisons were received. Depending on the type of rodenticide, ingestions can lead to potentially life-threatening problems including bleeding, seizures, or even damage to the kidneys or other vital organs. "Should pet owners opt to use a rodenticide around their home, they should make sure that the bait is placed only in areas completely inaccessible to their animals," Dr. Hansen instructs.

Veterinary Medications: Close to 6,200 cases involving animal-related preparations such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, heartworm preventives, dewormers, antibiotics, vaccines, and nutritional supplements were managed by the Center last year. "Although these products are formulated for use in pets, it is very important to always read and follow label directions for use exactly," advises Dr. Hansen. "As with flea and tick preparations, many medications are intended for use in certain species only, and potentially serious problems could result if given to the wrong animal or at too high of a dose."

Household Cleaners: In 2005, approximately 5,200 calls pertaining to cleaning agents such as bleaches, detergents and disinfectants were received. "Household cleaners can be quite effective in disinfecting surfaces in the home when used appropriately," says Dr. Hansen, "but gastrointestinal irritation or even severe oral burns could result with some cleaners depending on the circumstances of exposure." Additionally, irritation to the respiratory tract may be possible if a product becomes inhaled. "All household cleaners and other chemicals should be stored in a secure location well out of the reach of pets," Dr. Hansen recommends. When cleaning your pet's food and water bowls, crate or other habitat, a mild soap such as a hand dishwashing detergent along with hot water is a good choice over products containing potentially harsh chemicals.

Herbicicides: Around 4,600 calls pertaining to various types of herbicides came through the Center's lines last year. Most herbicides are considered to be relatively safe when used appropriately. However, directions such as "keep animals away from treated area until dry" need to be adhered to in order to avoid the potential for problems such as damage to desirable vegetation, minor skin irritation or stomach upset if ingested.

Plants: Over 4,400 cases involving plants were handled by the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center in 2005, including such varieties as lilies, azalea, rhododendron, sago palm, kalanchoe and schefflera, among others. "There are many different species of plants that could be harmful to pets if consumed in large enough quantities," cautions Dr. Hansen. "For example, just one or two sago palm nuts can cause vomiting, diarrhea, depression, seizures, and even liver failure, while lilies are highly toxic to cats and even in small amounts can produce life-threatening kidney failure." While poisonous plants should certainly be kept away from pets, it is also a good idea to discourage animals from nibbling on any variety, as even non-toxic plants could produce minor stomach upset if eaten.

Chocolate: More than 2,600 chocolate calls were received by the Center last year. Depending on the type, chocolate can contain large amounts of fat and caffeine-like substances known as methylxanthines. If ingested in significant amounts, chocolate could potentially cause vomiting, diarrhea, panting, excessive thirst and urination, hyperactivity and in severe cases, abnormal heart rhythm, tremors, seizures, and could even be fatal. "Typically, the darker the chocolate, the greater the potential for poisoning," says Dr. Hansen. "Baking chocolate contains the highest amount of methylxanthines, and just two ounces could cause serious problems for a 10 pound dog."

Home Improvement Products: In 2005, approximately 1,800 cases involving paint, solvents, expanding glues, and other physical hazards were managed. While the majority of water-based paints are low in toxic potential, stomach upset is still possible, and artist's paints can contain heavy metals that could be poisonous if consumed in a large quantity. Solvents can be very irritating to the gastrointestinal tract, eyes and skin, and could also produce central nervous system depression if ingested, or pneumonia if inhaled. "Prevention is really key to avoiding problems from accidental exposures," says Dr. Hansen. "Pet owners should keep pets out of areas where home improvement projects are occurring, and of course, label directions should always be followed when using any product."

Fertilizers: More than 1,700 calls pertaining to plant fertilizers were handled last year. In general, most fertilizers are fairly low in toxicity. However, the consumption of significant amounts can lead to vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal discomfort. Additionally, some fertilizer formulations may also contain insecticides, which could potentially lead to further problems if eaten.Please visit the AKC website for a useful list of plants. http://

Thursday, March 01, 2007

~What is a puppy mill?

Puppy mills (known as puppy farms in the UK and Australia) are dog breeding operations that are considered to be disreputable and sometimes hazardous to the health of the animals due to the conditions of the breeding kennel. The term originated among critics of such operations. Small-scale operations where dogs are not available to health care or good sanitation are usually called backyard breeding; the terms are akin but not synonymous. The largest concentrations in the USA are allegedly in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania and rural Missouri.

Reputable breeders raise their animals in humane conditions, provide good socialization and often formal training, and adhere to the breed standard. They are knowledgeable about major health problems associated with their breed, and with the principles of genetics, frequently undertaking specific matings to produce or refine particular desirable characteristics in their dogs. They are also sensitive to the requirements of their breeding adults — who may also be breed or performance champions — and the puppies they produce. Reputable breeders frequently screen potential customers rigorously, and usually provide a pedigree and health guarantee with their puppies.

Although many responsible breeding operations tend to be small, size alone is not an indication that a particular operation is a puppy mill. Rather, puppy mills are characterized by ignoring duties that are standard among responsible dog breeders. They may keep their dogs in overcrowded, unclean or otherwise inappropriate surroundings. The puppies they produce may be improperly socialized or may suffer from health problems which are often not disclosed to purchasers. Their breeding animals may also suffer, with females sometimes forced to undergo repeated pregnancies too quickly to fully recuperate between them.

Puppy mill operators may misrepresent the breed of dog being sold, and adult puppy mill dogs may exhibit characteristics uncommon to their advertised breed. Unlike the puppies produced by reputable breeders, the vast majority of puppy mill animals are sold to pet stores. Puppy mill operators are frequently accused of being motivated only by profit rather than a commitment to the breed or any empathy for the animals in their care.

Purchasing dogs, especially those claimed to be purebred, from a pet store is strongly discouraged by reputable breeders and animal shelters. While many pet stores claim to purchase dogs from "local breeders" instead of puppy mills, this is often untrue or is a difference in name only, as reputable breeders generally do not sell animals to pet stores. The phrase "local breeder" may also refer to backyard breeders.

Schnauzers Of Taylor is proud to support the Companion Animal Protection Society.

We are very big advocates against puppymills and pet abuse. We donate large amounts yearly to try and put a stop to these operations.Please do not EVER buy a puppy from a petstore and be picky about your breeder just as if you were getting a child.
Here are some links you find helpful: