Animal Radio® Newsletter

Animal Radio® November 2011 Newsletter

Animal Radio® Show #622

Cats are CheaperCats Are Cheaper Than Dogs
The truth about cats and dogs: They can cost an arm and a leg in the long run. Dogs can cost between $310 and $7,100 to maintain every year and between $4,070 and $101,070 to maintain over a lifetime, says Kiplinger's Personal Finance. Cats are cheaper on average: between $490 and $940 per year and between $7,760 and $15,260 per lifetime.

Pet Tattoos
TatWhy not tattoo your pet's coat? You're already painting her nails and dressing her in clothes, right? tells us how to put a temporary tat on your cat that matches the one on your bod.

Ways To Save
Animal Radio® has come up with tips for living well on less money. Why should our animals suffer when we are cutting back. The Pets & People Drug Discount Card will save you 15-55% on pet and human meds.

Freedom LeashFreedom Leash
When a new pet product comes out, Animal Radio® is first to test it. This week we're showing-off the latest in leash technology that allows you to walk two dogs without the tangle.

Listen to this Animal Radio® episode

Animal Radio® Show #621

Elephant Poo PowerElephant Power
Elephants are actually helping to keep the lights on at the Munich Zoo. The zoo's resident Indian elephants are providing 'Elephant Energy' by creating power generated from their dung. This is then used to warm the gorilla enclosure, but it could be used to heat about 25 homes.

Jerry Brown and his Dog7 Pet-Friendly California Bills
Governor Jerry Brown's enactment of several animal-friendly bills into law is a victory for California's animals. The new laws protect California citizens, pets, and wildlife from irresponsible breeders, pet overpopulation, and animal fighting, among other issues. The passage of these seven bills makes this one of the most successful legislative sessions for any state's animals in 2011.

Finding Peace When Pets Die
Jon Katz and his DogsBest-selling author Jon Katz is back on Animal Radio®. His new book, "Going Home" was inspired by the lack of good books to help grief-stricken owners deal with the ultimate demise of their furry friends.

Halloween Hazards
Dr. Marty Becker has the 4-1-1 on Halloween Hazards that your pet may encounter. Dr. Oz's go-to guy knows what you need to watch out for, besides ghouls and goblins.

Listen to this Animal Radio® episode

Animal Radio® Sponsored By Natural Balance Pet Foods

Animal Radio® Show #620

Halloween DogDog Trick or Dog Treat
Yet another Halloween is upon us. Why are we compelled to dress up our animals? Oh, right, because we get more candy that way. We have some simple, fun and easy ways to share the holiday with our furry ghouls and goblins.

Ultrasonic TV Spot for your Dog
Nestle-Purina created a 23-second commercial for its Beneful dog food. The ad includes a high-pitched "ping" that humans can't hear, but your dog can.

Halloween DogPets Can Make Your Kids Smarter and Teach Them Empathy
Research suggests that social, emotional and cognitive development is enhanced when a child cares for a pet. Children who own pets feel more empathy for other people from an early age.

How does a pit bull dog swallow a flagpole?
The unlikely event happened when he was chewing on a garden flag and it became lodged in his throat. A veterinarian removed the garden flag using bolt cutters. After a 90-minute surgery, the pole, which was as long as Blue's body, was successfully removed.

Listen to this Animal Radio® episode

Animal Radio® Show #619

Saved DogsDog Eating Banned
For the first time in 600 years, residents of Qianxi Township, China, will be banned from holding an ancient dog-eating festival after the public voiced their discontent. In China, and other parts of Asia, it's still not uncommon for humans to eat dogs.

Bad DogAnimals Behaving Badly
While we can learn a lot of lessons from our animals, they're not all good lessons. Linda Lombardi has chronicled stories of bad, bad animals. Some drink, gamble, cheat and steal. They're just like us!

Separation Anxiety Tops List of Dog Issues
Vladae the World Famous Russian Dog Wizard deals with extreme cases of anxiety. It's amazing to see what kind of havoc and destruction can happen when you're away. We have solid solutions for calming your pet.

Halloween Lion DogDressing Your Pet for Halloween
Groomer Joey Villani has tips to help you get your pet in the holiday mood and ready to Trick or Treat. It doesn't have to be hard to add a little color to your pets coat. Remember, it's all about getting more candy, right?

Listen to this Animal Radio® episode

Pet Stay Las Vegas

Animal Radio® introduces FREE Pets & People Drug Discount Card

You may already know how expensive pet medication can be. Especially when pet insurance doesn't cover drugs.

We at Animal Radio® are doing our best to help out, after all, we're all in the same financial boat and don't want the pets to suffer because a medicine's cost is prohibitive. We made a deal with the top pharmacy benefits managers. Here's what we came up with:

- The Animal Radio® Pets & People Drug Discount Card is FREE.
- It offers 15-55% discount on pet medicines or uninsured human medicines.
- It's usable at almost 60,000 pharmacies, including Walgreens, Wal-mart, Rite-Aid, Target, Costco, CVS...all the biggies!
- Card is pre-activated and never expires.
- Great for small businesses that can't afford benefits for employees, or even your church or local Senior Center. We will gladly send you as many cards as you need.
- You can print out the FREE card online at:

Or, if you would like us to mail you a free card, send a self-addressed stamped envelope to:

Animal Radio Drug Card
699 Paula Street
Morro Bay, CA. 93442

Please help spread the word. Your friends will thank you.

Print Your Free Drug Discount Card

Animal Radio® Sponsored By PETZLIFEs

Animal Radio® Headlines

Bacterial disease outbreak threatens metro Detroit animals
EAST LANSING, Mich. €” More than 20 cases of the life-threatening bacterial infection leptospirosis have been reported in Detroit-area dogs in the past three weeks, according to Michigan State University's Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health.

Experts at the MSU center, a service unit of the College of Veterinary Medicine, diagnosed the specific strain of the disease, which can cause fatal damage to dogs and can be transmitted to humans.

In most cases, the dogs were not vaccinated against leptospirosis, or they had an uncertain vaccination history. Because this particular type of leptospirosis is associated with contact with rats, stray dogs are typically thought to be at highest risk.

"What is particularly unusual about this outbreak is that the dogs affected are not stray animals, but people's pets," said Carole Bolin, director of the Diagnostic Center. "Unfortunately, we expect to see more cases, and this is a very dangerous type of leptospirosis. Many veterinarians have never seen this type in dogs because it was markedly reduced by vaccination."

Bolin and her team performed diagnostic testing and identified the particular strain of infection as icterohaemorrhagiae, which can cause severe disease in humans and animals. It is commonly carried by rats but also can be transmitted dog-to-dog or dog-to-human. Bolin is aware of nine dogs that died or were euthanized as a result of the disease, but there may be others.

"The Diagnostic Center became involved because of our experience, expertise and our desire to help the public," Bolin said. "Our diagnosis helped identify this relatively rare strain, and the samples we tested will provide teaching tools for our students and residents so they will recognize this disease in the future."

Leptospirosis spreads by infected wild and domestic animals. The bacteria (leptospira) that infects these animals can reside in their kidneys, and the host animal may or may not appear ill. They contaminate their environment with living leptospira when they urinate. Pets can become infected by sniffing this urine or by contacting standing water that becomes contaminated by rain and water runoff.

The bacteria spread rapidly through an animal's blood stream, usually causing fever, depression and vomiting. The bacteria also attack the liver and kidneys, which can lead to organ failure.

"This is a very serious, rapidly progressing type of leptospirosis in dogs," Bolin said. "Dogs can appear normal one day and be severely ill the next day. People can become infected, so this also is a threat to animal owners, caretakers and veterinarians."

In the 1980s, Bolin's mentor Alex Thiermann conducted studies on the high leptospirosis prevalence in the rat and dog population in Detroit. Leptospirosis caused by icterohaemorrhagiae was identified as a cause of human cases and as a common infection in rats and stray dogs. The prevalence of leptospirosis dropped significantly after the conditions predisposing to large rat populations were corrected.

Also, a leptospirosis vaccine was routinely administered to dogs, greatly diminishing the number of cases. As cases of disease in dogs decreased and because of the vaccine's potential for adverse reactions, vaccine use diminished and it no is longer given to all dogs. However, Bolin said this outbreak demonstrates that leptospirosis remains a significant risk for dogs.

"There is something we can do now to prevent this disease and that is to vaccinate," she said. "Dog owners need to contact their veterinarian to get more information regarding vaccination."

MSU's Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health has become one of the country's premier veterinary diagnostic laboratories, handling more than 220,000 cases involving approximately 1.5 million tests annually.

Cats Are Cheaper Than Dogs - Dogs cost up to $101,070 in a lifetimeCostly Animals
(Animal Radio® Newsroom October 25, 2011) The truth about cats and dogs: They can cost an arm and a leg in the long run.

Dogs can cost between $310 and $7,100 to maintain every year and between $4,070 and $101,070 to maintain over a lifetime, says Kiplinger's Personal Finance. That's more than kibbles and bits.

Cats are cheaper on average: between $490 and $940 per year and between $7,760 and $15,260 per lifetime.

The annual costs take into account many factors, including food, toys, monthly veterinarian visits, and other essential supplies.

However, fish remain a cost-effective alternative to the more high-maintenance pets. Fish cost an average of just $230 in their first year, $20 annually, and $270-$910 for a lifetime.

If you plan on owning a cat or dog, be sure that you have the money to pay for the expenses. Love for a pet is essential, but ultimately it's money that pays the bills. If the cost for a dog or cat is too high, there are always other fish in the sea.

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Cat is Peeing in the Wrong Place

Sandy Garretson: It's a pleasure to have access to you through email. I listen to Animal Radio on a regular basis and respect your professionalism and your kind heart.

My situation is I have 3 miniature schnauzers 2 of which develop struvite crystals unless I feed them a prescribe dog food. I am very concerned since the first ingredient is corn. The vets have told me to prevent the crystals my dogs must continue on this type of food for the rest of their lives. They are now 7 and 8 years old. The other schnauzer does not develop crystals. Over the years I have tried different foods but with no success one of of which was Wysong Natural Dog Food which has been around for years and is excellent. After 3 months my dog's urine had high levels of crystals, so back to Dr. Hills food.

Is there any alternative for my precious pets? One of my dogs has several obedience and agility titles and was outstanding in the ring and on the field. In the last 2 years she has developed a breathing problems and get exhausted within a couple of minutes. I had her examined by a vet specialist who found nothing wrong with her lungs, heart, ability to release body heat and whatever else he could think of. $800.00 later nothing was found. Yet, my dog is unable to run as before and begins quite quickly to pant and lays down. I don't know if it has anything to do with her diet but I thought you may have some experience with this problem.

Doctor Debbie: Hello and thank you for your kind words! I'm glad to be able to help pet lovers just like you.

For pets that have a documented problem with struvite bladder stones, I have to advise to stick with a prescription pet food. Diets on the general market are not designed with urine crystals in mind- it is no fault of those foods, but this is a special problem that requires special feeding guidelines. I regularly use Hill's C/D and S/D foods for my patients and I have no concerns with it. Corn is not a bad ingredient in dog foods- the concerns with corn in dog food is over exaggerated in pet websites. Corn is a good source of energy and carbohydrate which is fine for the typical dog. But if your pets had food allergies then perhaps we'd suggest avoiding corn based foods. There are other companies that make struvite prevention diets such as Royal Canin and their S/O diet. It just depends which works best for you and your veterinarian.

In regards to your agility dog's exercise intolerance.....this is a tough one. Exercise intolerance is a challenging clinical sign that usually warrants extensive workup, and tests. And although you've already spent alot in evaluating this, the workup gets even more costly as the veterinarian works to a diagnosis.The main 3 causes of this type of exercise intolerance fall into these categories: 1. Cardiovascular, 2. Muscular/neuromuscular 3. Metabolic. I would of course also make sure that your baby isn't suffering from osteoarthritic pain and treat with medication if that is a possiblitiy.

I'm not sure what specific testing your veterinarian has done so far but to evaluate the above categories it could include:
bloodwork like: cbc/chemistry panel/thyroid panel/urinalysis, adrenal testing, heartworm test, rickettsial testing, fungal testing, myasthenia gravis testing
chest and abdomen xrays
cardiac ultrasound
bronchoscopy & airway sampling (transtracheal wash)
muscle biopsy

An additional thought, if you have any dog racing tracks in your area, you might do well to consult with a veterinarian that works in the area of veterinary sport medicine as they may have special experience that could be helpful as well.

Best Regards to you and your furry ones!

Picking the Right Groomer

Bellamy: You always seem to be talking about the shady groomers out there and what they'll do to upcharge you and some unsanitary habits some have. So, how do I pick one? Yellow Pages? Internet? I don't have any friends that can reccommend anybody.

Dogfather Joey Villani: The first thing you need to look for in finding the right groomer is an inviting place. Don't just pick it from the phone book. You really need to spend some time in your selection and actually visit these places.

When you look at a grooming salon from the outside, look to see if all the lights in the ceiling are lit. Make sure there are no burned out bulbs. Because its important for the groomer to be able to see the dog properly. If a bulb is out, this could make a potential client feel that if they neglect their salon, then the dogs will be neglected as well. It should look like a salon you want to go in. It doesn't have to be elaborately decorated, but it should look inviting.

When you walk in the door, the first thing you should do is "smell" the place. Does sit smell clean? Does it smell like dirty dogs, urine or feces? The exception is that perhaps a dog just did his business in the saloon, but you should be able to tell the difference.

When speaking to a groomer, listen to the questions they ask you. You shouldn't have to ask them questions. One thing they should ask you about is your pet's vaccinations. This means that they will make sure that not only are they safe, but that your pets will be safe there too.

Do they address your pet as well? You want to make sure that your pet is comfortable with them. Of course there are some pets that won't be comfortable no matter what you do. These pets can be served a steak dinner and champagne and they will still want to walk out the door. But the groomer should pay attention to the pet and have a smile on their face.

Before you leave your pet, make sure that you tour the salon. And if they offer to take you on a tour, that is even better. When groomers say you can't go in to the back because it might stress some of the dogs there, run away! There is no reason why you shouldn't be allowed to view the area and see what goes on. Don't let them hide anything from you.

And lastly, when you leave with your groomed dog, make sure your dog is a happy dog!

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Why is my cat crying?

Sujin: Hello Animal Radio, This is a question for Joy Turner. My partner and I merged households about 2 years ago. I moved in with my two cats, and my partner also had two cats, who are brothers. Shortly after we moved in, one of my cats was hit by a car and passed away.

Since then, the one who remained, Bammie, has become very needy. Although she seems happy overall, and now goes outside, she does all sort of tricks to get us to feed her by hand. The real problem is at night. About the time we get into bed, she starts crying and doesn't stop until we get up, give her more food and feed her by hand. This happens 2-3 times per night, and is starting to interrupt our sleep.

At one point, I did try to be more loving and attentive in response, but Bammie continued her crying. It hasn't gotten more plaintive and frequent in the last month or so. Joy, we would appreciate it if you could share with us what Bammie wants, and what we could do make her feel better (and get a good night's sleep!)

Animal Communicator Joy Turner: Hello Sunjin, Thank you for listening to Animal Radio. We always appreciate hearing from our listeners.

Bammie is still missing her friend quite a bit. She's never really gotten over the loss so there is quite a bit of grief energy around her. (Holistic vets recommend a homeopathic remedy called Ignatia to help with that.) She also feels like you have moved on too fast for her (in regard to her friend). I would recommend spending some time with her talking to her in a soothing voice about how much you miss her partner and about the love you shared. This will help her understand that you are aware of her feelings which will help her feel better. She especially misses her friend at nights which is why she keeps waking you up - she wants the company she used to have. She is also feeling like she is not part of what the other cats have so she feels more alone - another reason she likes the special attention of hand feeding her. Ordinarily, I would suggest getting her a cat of her own but in her case, she is not ready for that. She needs to get rid of at least some of the grief she is feeling first. Otherwise, she is happy generally.

Should you decide to go the second cat route - if both of the others are boys, I would suggest another girl and be very verbal about letting her know you are getting her a friend just for herself. (You don't want her thinking you are replacing her.) Then, I would segregate the 2 girls from the boys as much as possible until the new kitten bonds with her first and most strongly.

I do understand about sleep. I would try taking her on the bed with you and curling up with her so she feels connected. She's just missing the companionship of her friend. When seen from the appropriate perspective, the hand feeding can be a very personal way of bonding more with her. That's the perspective I suggest.

Thank you for your question. If you would like more help, you can contact me directly for a private session.

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Events Calendar
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Send your events to:

Operation Blankets of Love Legendary Bingo Fundraiser
Where: Hamburger Mary's, 8288 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood
When: Nov. 16, 2011 (Sun) 6:30pm-?
Cost: $20
A fun-filled evening of bingo, great prizes for winners, plus raffles, live auction items, drag performances, and more.

Feline Urinary Disorders Seminar
Where: Fredericksburg Petco, 5717 Plank Road Fredericksburg, VA 22553
When: Nov. 12, 2011 1pm
Cost: FREE
For cat owners with felines effected by Lower Urinary Tract Disorder! This exclusive, free nutrition seminar event is hosted by the Fredericksburg Petco for cat owners interested in learning more about urinary disorders, dietary management, alternatives to prescription diets, and the opportunity to meet other cat enthusiasts with similar concerns. Presented by licensed veterinary technician and pet nutrition counselor, Stephanie Holmes.

Doxie Thanksgiving Feast Pot Luck
Where: Tewinkle Park, 970 Arlington Dr, Costa Mesa, CA 92628
When: Nov. 13, 2011 3:30pm
Cost: See Website
It's our last meetup of the year! Let's give thanks for having wonderful doxies in our lives and have a feast to celebrate! We'll be getting together at dinnertime from 3:30-5:30pm. When you RSVP, leave a comment what you'd like to bring for the pot luck so other members know and won't bring the same thing. We'll have our fenced doxie area for the lil' ones to run around off leash as well.

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