How to Budget for Pet Care Expenses

Pet care expenses can add up — even just the basics! Buy a bag of kibble here, a few new toys there, and then add in the annual wellness visit to your vet. You may be surprised when you look closely at the total cost of responsible pet care that we take for granted. 

Creating a budget for your pet is helpful in projecting how much you will spend monthly and over the course of the year. It can give you insight into how much to expect to spend in the future and how you may be able to control unnecessary expenditures. A budget can even help you better plan for those anticipated expenses, like vaccines, wellness visits and parasite control. 

Oakland Veterinary Referral Services has useful ways you can put together a budget to keep your pet’s wellbeing a priority year-round.

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Cloudy Vision: Cataracts in Dogs

cataracts in dogs

Cataracts in dogs are usually easy to spot. The clouded look of the pupil gives them away. Unfortunately, many dog owners assume that cataracts just come with age and don’t think to intervene to address them. This is troubling because eye health is so important to a dog’s general health and quality of life.

The good news is that there is treatment available for cataracts so that your canine can have good vision and eye health throughout their golden years.

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The Right Diet and Lifestyle for an Allergic Pet

allergic pet

An allergic pet may suffer from excessive itching, watering of the eyes, diarrhea, or many other symptoms. An allergic dog or cat may be in chronic discomfort, so a worried pet owner will try any number of things to alleviate their pet’s distressing symptoms. These may include trying different medications and diets or switching shampoos.

Nutrition is a big factor in helping many allergic pets. The important thing is to understand your pet’s allergies, including food allergies, and the impact of diet and lifestyle. 

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Bugging Out: Pet Food from Crickets

pet food from crickets

Do we hear chirping sounds? It may be coming from your pet’s food bowl! Pet food from crickets is one of the beyond meat alternative pet diets currently being tested. Manufacturers have turned to exotic ingredients as sources of pet food, responding to allergies to normal meat proteins like chicken and beef. These include ingredients like elk, venison, quail, alligator, bison, and now, you got it, bugs. 

Your friends at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services closely follow this trend and are bugsolutely convinced that these unique protein sources are coming to a store near you.

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Wacky Weed: Growing Your Own Catnip

catnip

Does your cat go crazy over catnip? Does he roll on the floor and zip across the living room in utter frenzy? This plant is like kitty crack to most felines! It can make them behave in ways that are both euphoric to them and hysterical to us.

You can buy catnip in a variety of forms, from stuffed toys to baked goods; from catnip-infused treats to bulk containers. No matter what form it takes, your cat likely goes gaga over it. If you are like most cat owners and go through catnip in no time flat, a cheaper approach is growing your own catnip. Your team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services is here to tell you how!

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Holistic Pet Care for Optimal Wellness

holistic pet care

The term ‘holistic’ gets a lot of press. It’s associated with lifestyle products, nutrition, exercise, and a slew of other things, but what does it mean exactly? 

When asked, most pet owners would opt for a pet diet or product if it is holistic because it sounds healthier and more “natural”. The trend in holistic products attests to that. But, there is something more essential in the concept of holistic pet care that greatly benefits your pet. 

Oakland Veterinary Referral Services (OVRS) is here to help you decipher this approach to feeding and care and why it matters.

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Pet Skin Cancer and Sunburn

pet skin cancer

We’re concerned about preventing sunburn and skin cancer when we slather on sunscreen or grab a hat. Most of us know at least one person who has a form of skin cancer. But did you know that cats and dogs are at risk of sunburn and skin cancer, too?

Learn more about pet skin cancer and sunburn and what you can do to protect your pet.

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How to Safely Remove Ticks from Your Pet

tick removal

We want everyone to know how to safely remove ticks since they are a terrible problem in the Midwest. Most of us pull at least one tick off of ourselves or our pets. Ticks carry diseases like Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, and most notably, Lyme disease. 

Most people’s response, when seeing a tick on their pet, is to pull it off fast! But there is a technique to tick removal. By doing it correctly, you minimize your pet’s risk of developing disease or infection. Oakland Veterinary Referral Services wants you to better understand the common deer tick and the proper way to remove them from your pet.

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A Prickly Problem: Porcupines and Pets

Porcupines and pets don’t mix very well. Imagine you are enjoying the great outdoors with your dog. It’s a beautiful day. All of a sudden, your dog yelps. A few moments later he wanders into view with quills sticking out of his face and chest. Ouch! What do you do? 

The team at OVRS hears many tales of dogs (sometimes even cats) who wandered a little too close to a porcupine. These quills bring trouble when not removed quickly. We are here to help you learn more about porcupines and their quills, and how you can avoid an emergency situation with your pet. 

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DCM and Grain-Free Diets and Dog Food

grain-free diets and dog food

Since July 2018, the FDA has conducted investigations into grain-free diets and dog foods and their potential link to canine dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). Since then, more pet owners have come forward after their dogs have been diagnosed with or have died of DCM. And, each of these pets was fed a grain-free diet.

On June 27, the agency published an updated listing of 16 brands of dog food as those with the highest correlation to this form of heart disease. Many pet owners are understandably concerned about this FDA warning and would like more answers about these diets. Are grain-free diets bad? Should you change your pet’s food?

The team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services wants to address these concerns and help dog owners understand these precautions and what actions to take.

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