Holiday Pet Safety Tips

Holiday Pet Safety Tips in White Plains, NY

The holiday season is usually a fun, joyous time of year. While we’re busy decorating, shopping, and spending time with family and friends, our pets safety may sometimes go unnoticed. The Veterinary Emergency Group in White Plains and Nanuet, NY, can help you with the following holiday pet safety tips. And although we hope your holidays DON’T include any medical emergencies, if your cat or dog is need of emergency care, we’re open and here for you nights, weekends and holidays.

Real Christmas Trees

Did you opt for the real Christmas tree this year instead of an artificial one? If so, keep in mind that the pine needles of real Christmas trees are considered mildly toxic to pets if ingested and can also puncture the intestines. Always keep the floor area around your tree cleaned by checking it a few times a day, or simply make sure your pet doesn’t have access to it.

Tinsel Decorations

If you have a cat or other curious pets that may be drawn to the stringy, sparkly nature of tinsel and other similar items, it’s best to hang these decorations high on the tree or to not use them at all. Ingesting tinsel and other stringy items can result in an intestinal blockage and can often require surgery.

Dangerous Foods

Christmas time is a popular time of year for chocolate, so if you’ll be buying candy or baking cookies or brownies, remember that chocolate is toxic to dogs and cats. Raisins, macadamia nuts, and foods that include the sugar substitute xylitol are also toxic. Other potentially dangerous foods are those that are high in fat, such as sausage and poultry skin. Although not toxic, ingesting a large amount of fatty foods can result in pancreatitis and/or weight gain.

Christmas Lights

Whether they’re on your tree or framing your windows, Christmas lights can be a tangle hazard to pets that paw at them and knock them down. Another potential hazard is the obvious burn or shock risk if your pet chews on the wires. If you know your pet is the curious type, keep the Christmas lights high and out of their reach or consider some pet-friendly alternatives instead, such fiber-optic lights.

Toxic Plants

We know seasonal plants can make a home more festive for the holidays, but did you know there are some that are toxic to dogs and cats? Poinsettias, holly, and mistletoe are just a few of the ones on the list. So either keep these plants away from your pet or go with the artificial versions instead.

If you have any questions about these cat and dog holiday safety tips, or if your pet is in need of emergency care, give us a call in White Plains (914) 949-8779 or in Nanuet at (845) 536-5645.

 

Can This Food Harm Your Pet?

Believe it or not, there are so many dangerous foods which can affect our pets’ health and well-being and the animal care team at the Veterinary Emergency Group wants to help you keep them safe. Especially during the holiday seasons, there are many popular human foods that our pets may encounter, some of which can be dangerous for them, and it’s important for all pet owners to know the difference.

Dangerous Foods for Pets in White Plains, NY

Some popular foods that can harm or kill your pet include:

  • Alcohol
  • Avocado
  • Chocolate
  • Coffee, tea, and other caffeinated beverages
  • Garlic
  • Grapes
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Milk and other dairy products
  • Onions
  • Poultry bones
  • Raisins
  • Xylitol found in sugar free candy
  • …and more

How to Protect Your Pet During the Holidays

During the holiday season, it’s important to talk with your house guests to make sure that no one gives your pet treats without your consent. This is the best way to ensure that your pet doesn’t eat anything without your knowledge. It is also important to keep an eye on fallen table scraps which your pet could pick up and eat without warning. We recommend keeping your pet in a separate room during holiday mealtimes and parties to avoid this concern.

Remember that if your pet does consume food that is dangerous for them, the Veterinary Emergency Team can talk you through it and help you determine if emergency care is necessary. We are open and able to provide emergency care during all the hours your family veterinarian is unavailable, and that means weekends and holidays too!

Top 3 Pet Travel Items

Traveling With Pets in White Plains, NY

So you’re planning a week-long trip with your pet to sunny Florida this summer, or perhaps you’ll be driving a few hours away for a weekend camping trip. Wherever you’re going and however you’ll get there, Veterinary Emergency Group in White Plains, NY wants your dog or cat to be prepared for the trip.

In addition to food and water, there are many items that should accompany your pet when you travel, for their safety. Far too often, there are pet accidents and injuries that occur that could have been avoided with adequate preparation. We want to prevent these incidents from happening toyour beloved companion, so we have selected what we consider the top three items you need to travel with your pet.

  1. Emergency Supplies/First Aid Kit

Pets are curious by nature and can find themselves in potentially dangerous situations when they’re in a new environment. Hiking in the woods, playing in a dog park—you name it. As a rule of thumb, always bring a pet first aid kit when you travel with your pet. In addition to basic first aid supplies (gauze, scissors, hydrogen peroxide, etc.), your kit should include our phone number (914-949-8779) for local trips and the number of the nearest emergency pet hospital to your destination for long distance trips. Remember, Veterinary Emergency Group is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, should an emergency occur.

  1. Car Safety Harness/Carrier

A car safety pet harness is especially important for long road trips or trips on bumpy roads. Most pet safety harnesses are designed with a seat belt loop so they can be secured by a locked seat belt. A safety harness can keep your pet safe and seated while preventing any distractions caused by their roaming around the car. There are many sizes and styles available to accommodate most pet breeds. For air travel, all airlines that allow pets require pet carriers. Just be sure to check with your airline first for their pet policy, including the carrier dimension requirements.

  1. Pet Supplies

This may seem like an obvious item, but you’d be surprised at how many pet owners forget to bring their pet’s leash or collar during trips. Keep in mind that many places, such as parks and beaches, require that pets be on a leash at all times. Plus, many pets can be act unpredictably in a new environment and will likely want to explore, so keeping them on a leash will help keep them from chasing squirrels and rabbits, following the scent of another pet, etc. Make sure that your pet has identification as well, whether it’s in the form of an ID tag, a microchip, or both. Having a recent photo handy is also a great idea.

Emergency and Urgent Care for Your Pet

Emergencies can happen at any time of the day, when many veterinary hospitals are closed. Even if you think an emergency will never occur with your pet, it’s important to know where the nearest emergency vet is located. Located in White Plains, NY, The Veterinary Emergency Group serves pets from a number of communities, ranging from Manhattan to the Bronx. We have been providing emergency and urgent care services for over 25 years. Whether your pet needs treatment for a fracture, wound, or any other emergency, our experienced veterinarians are here to help.

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Our hospital is open nights, weekends, and all major holidays, for your convenience to treat your pet, and no appointment is required. However, we ask that you call before your arrival, if possible. Our hours are:

Monday        6pm-8am
Tuesday       6pm-8am
Wednesday  6pm-8am
Thursday      6pm-8am
*Friday          6pm-
*Saturday     24 hours
*Sunday       24 hours

We know how stressful it can be to have a pet experience an accident, so you can be confident that our team of compassionate, skilled doctors will provide exceptional care in a timely manner. We also take the time to discuss your pet’s treatment in detail to ensure you have a full understanding of their condition.

Common Emergencies We Treat

The Veterinary Emergency Group treats virtually any pet emergency. Our facility is equipped with an in-house laboratory, digital X-ray technology, a Snyder ICU unit, and more to treat your pet. Some of the most common emergencies we treat include:

  • Trauma and other injuries
  • Puncture and other wounds
  • Poisoning
  • Acute lameness
  • Respiratory problems
  • Heatstroke
  • Seizures

You can learn more about the conditions we treat by visiting our Urgent Care and Emergencies pages. If you think your pet is in need of emergency or urgent care, give us a call at (914) 949-8779 to speak with a doctor.

Top Ten Winter Skin & Paw Care Tips

Exposure
to winter’s dry, cold air and chilly rain, sleet and snow can cause chapped
paws and itchy, flaking skin, but these aren’t the only discomforts pets can
suffer. Winter walks can become downright dangerous if chemicals from
ice-melting agents are licked off of bare paws.
Says Dr.
Louise Murray, Vice President of the ASPCA
Animal Hospital,
“During the winter, products used as de-icers on sidewalks and other areas can
lead to trouble for our animal companions, potentially causing problems ranging
from sore feet to internal toxicity. Pet parents should take precautions to
minimize their furry friends’ exposure to such agents.” To help prevent cold
weather dangers from affecting your pet’s paws and skin, please heed the
following advice from our experts: 
·
Repeatedly coming out of the cold into the dry heat can cause itchy, flaking
skin. Keep your home humidified and towel dry your pet as soon as he comes
inside, paying special attention to his feet and in between the toes. · Trim
long-haired dogs to minimize the clinging of ice balls, salt crystals and
de-icing chemicals that can dry on the skin. (Don’t neglect the hair between
the toes!) 
· Bring a
towel on long walks to clean off stinging, irritated paws. After each walk,
wash and dry your pet’s feet to remove ice, salt and chemicals—and check for
cracks in paw pads or redness between the toes. 
· Bathe
your pets as little as possible during cold spells. Washing too often can
remove essential oils and increase the chance of developing dry, flaky skin. If
your pooch must be bathed, ask your vet to recommend a moisturizing shampoo
and/or rinse. 
 ·
Dressing your pet in a sweater or coat will help to retain body heat and
prevent skin from getting dry. · Booties help minimize contact with painful
salt crystals, poisonous anti-freeze and chemical ice-melting agents. They can
also help prevent sand and salt from getting lodged in between bare toes,
causing irritation. Use pet-friendly ice melts whenever possible. · Massaging
petroleum jelly into paw pads before going outside helps to protect from salt
and chemical agents. And moisturizing after a good toweling off helps to heal
chapped paws. 
·
Brushing your pet regularly not only gets rid of dead hair, but also stimulates
blood circulation, improving the skin’s overall condition. 
· Pets
burn extra energy by trying to stay warm in wintertime, sometimes causing
dehydration. Feeding your pet a little bit more during the cold weather and
making sure she has plenty of water to drink will help to keep her well-hydrated,
and her skin less dry. 
·
Remember, if the weather’s too cold for you, it’s probably too cold for your
pet. Animal companions should remain indoors as much as possible during the
winter months and never be left alone in vehicles when the mercury drops. 
 SOURCE:
https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/top-ten-winter-skin-paw-care-tips

Labor Day Safety Tips for Pets

1. Do not apply any sunscreen or
insect repellent product to your pet that is not labeled specifically for use
on animals.
2. Always assign a dog guardian.
No matter where you’re celebrating, be sure to assign a friend or member of the
family to keep an eye on your pooch-especially if you’re not in a fenced-in
yard or other secure area.
3. Made in the shade. Pets can get
dehydrated quickly, so give them plenty of fresh, clean water, and make sure
they have a shady place to escape the sun.
4. Always keep matches and lighter
fluid out of paws’ reach. Certain types of matches contain chlorates, which
could potentially damage blood cells and result in difficulty breathing-or even
kidney disease in severe cases.
5. Keep your pet on his normal
diet. Any change, even for one meal, can give your pet severe indigestion and
diarrhea.
6. Keep citronella candles, insect
coils and oil products out of reach. Ingesting any of these items can produce
stomach irritation and possibly even central nervous system depression in your
pets, and if inhaled, the oils could cause aspiration pneumonia.
7. Never leave your dog alone in
the car. Traveling with your dog means occasionally you’ll make stops in places
where he’s not permitted. Be sure to rotate dog walking duties between family
members, and never leave your animals alone in a parked vehicle.
8. Make a safe splash. Don’t leave
pets unsupervised around a pool-not all dogs are good swimmers.

One Thing you should Never see on Pet Food Label

If you see the words “veterinarian approved” on your pet food
label, look out. That claim is always untrue.

Veterinarians do not approve labels or products. Only state regulatory
agencies can do that, according to the The Business of Pet Food, a new
website launched by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
That’s just a taste of the information you’ll find on the site: www.petfood.aafco.org.
What else?
Ingredient lists, labeling requirements, analyses of commercial pet food and
government regulations for making and labeling pet food.
The site is for people who sell pet food — or want to. But there’s lots of
information for pet owners, too.
“Many people are surprised by how many regulations apply to the pet
food industry,” says Liz Higgins, Chair of AAFCO‘s Pet Food Committee.
For example, did you know “veterinarian recommended” means that
the company making the food actually surveyed veterinarians to find out if they
would recommend the food?
And, like we said, “veterinarian approved” is never true.
So, if you’ve ever wondered …
What’s really in my pet’s food?
What would it take to turn my secret recipe for Tasty Treats into a
mail-order business?
Go to http://www.petfood.aafco.org.

Originally
published by Healthy Pet.

ASPCA Hot Weather Tips

We all love spending the long, sunny days of summer outdoors with our furry companions, but being overeager in hot weather can spell danger, ASPCA experts warn.
“Most people love to spend the warmer days enjoying the outdoors with friends and family, but it is important to remember that some activities can be dangerous for our pets,” said Dr. Camille DeClementi, Senior Toxicologist at the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center. “By following a few simple rules, it is easy to keep your pet safe while still having fun in the sun.”
Take these simple precautions, provided by ASPCA experts, to help prevent your pet from overheating. And if you suspect your pet is suffering from heat stroke, get help from your veterinarian immediately.

 Visit the Vet
A visit to the veterinarian for a spring or early summer check-up is a must. Make sure your pets get tested for heartworm if they aren’t on year-round preventive medication. Do parasites bug your animal companions? Ask your doctor to recommend a safe flea and tick control program.
Made in the Shade
Pets can get dehydrated quickly, so give them plenty of fresh, clean water when it’s hot outdoors. Make sure your pets have a shady place to get out of the sun, be careful to not over-exercise them, and keep them indoors when it’s extremely hot.

 Know the Warning Signs
Symptoms of overheating in pets include excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, stupor or even collapse. They can also include seizures, bloody diarrhea and vomit along with an elevated body temperature of over 104 degrees. Animals with flat faces, like Pugs and Persian cats, are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot pant as effectively. These pets, along with the elderly, the overweight, and those with heart or lung diseases, should be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible.

No Parking!
Never leave your animals alone in a parked vehicle. “On a hot day, a parked car can become a furnace in no time-even with the windows open-which could lead to fatal heat stroke,” says Dr. Louise Murray, Vice President of ASPCA Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital. Also, leaving pets unattended in cars in extreme weather is illegal in several states.

Make a Safe Splash
Do not leave pets unsupervised around a pool-not all dogs are good swimmers. Introduce your pets to water gradually and make sure they wear flotation devices when on boats. Rinse your dog off after swimming to remove chlorine or salt from his fur, and try to keep your dog from drinking pool water, which contains chlorine and other chemicals that could cause stomach upset.

Screen Test
“During warmer months, the ASPCA sees an increase in injured animals as a result of High-Rise Syndrome, which occurs when pets-mostly cats-fall out of windows or doors and are seriously or fatally injured,” says Dr. Murray. “Pet owners need to know that this is completely preventable if they take simple precautions.” Keep all unscreened windows or doors in your home closed and make sure adjustable screens are tightly secured.

Summer Style
Feel free to trim longer hair on your dog, but never shave your dog: The layers of dogs’ coats protect them from overheating and sunburn. Brushing cats more often than usual can prevent problems caused by excessive heat. And be sure that any sunscreen or insect repellent product you use on your pets is labeled specifically for use on animals.
Street Smarts
When the temperature is very high, don’t let your dog linger on hot asphalt. Being so close the ground, your pooch’s body can heat up quickly, and sensitive paw pads can burn. Keep walks during these times to a minimum.

Avoid Chemicals
Commonly used flea and tick products, rodenticides (mouse and rat baits), and lawn and garden insecticides can be harmful to cats and dogs if ingested, so keep them out of reach. When walking your dog, steer clear of areas that you suspect have been sprayed with insecticides or other chemicals. Keep citronella candles, oil products and insect coils out of pets’ reach as well. Call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 if you suspect your animal has ingested a poisonous substance.

Party Animals
Taking Fido to a backyard barbeque or party? Remember that the food and drink offered to guests may be poisonous to pets. Keep alcoholic beverages away from pets, as they can cause intoxication, depression and comas. Similarly, remember that the snacks enjoyed by your human friends should not be a treat for your pet; any change of diet, even for one meal, may give your dog or cat severe digestive ailments. Avoid raisins, grapes, onions, chocolate and products with the sweetener xylitol.
Fireworks Aren’t Very Pet-riotic
Please leave pets at home when you head out to Fourth of July celebrations, and never use fireworks around pets. Exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns or trauma to curious pets, and even unused fireworks can be hazardous. Many types of fireworks contain potentially toxic substances such as potassium nitrate, copper, chlorates, arsenic and other heavy metals.

Source: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/pet-care-tips/hot-weather-tips.aspx

Wobbles-Veterinary Emergency Group Mascot

On
Sunday night October 29th 2012, a good samaritan brought in a wet, cold, lost
dog to VEG since we were the only animal hospital open during the storm. She
was evaluated to be dehydrated and was showing neurological signs making us
concerned about the possibility of head trauma. She was admitted to the hospital
and treated appropriately figuring as soon as Hurricane Sandy had past, we
would hear from the concerned parents of this lost dog.
Over
the next few days, we slowly weaned her off treatment however she continued to
have neurological signs. We had not heard from anyone about a lost dog but we
figured since there was no power or gasoline in the area, it could be a few
days for the owners to finally contact us.

As
of today, Wobbles, as we affectionately call her, is still here and is now our
very loveable hospital mascot! She is a happy and loving dog but still has
neurological signs. Everyone who meets her falls in love with her. She comforts
owners who have to leave their pets here for hospitalization. She has a way of
bringing smiles to the saddest faces.

The staff has provided her with beds, toys, bowls, food, and treats! One of the
associate veterinarians has spayed her. Clients love her and inquire about her
all the time. We even had a neurologist evaluate her free of charge! However,
his recommendation is an MRI and a cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) tap so that we can
specifically determine the underlying cause of her neurologic problem and
potentially improve her condition. We are planning on scheduling her MRI for
this week and we are keeping our fingers crossed!

Wobbles should be getting her MRI this week! Thanks everyone!!!!

 Wobbles Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Wobbles/359104157540753
Wobbles Donation Page (We’ve raised $2000 so far!): http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/wobbles-needs-an-mri?c=home