The Downlow on Cat and Dog Treats

Treats are an important part of rewarding your dog or cat. In moderation, cat and dog treats are great. They offer motivation during house training and basic commands, offer appeasement during times of stress, let you to bond with your pet, and are just generally tasty. But food-based rewards can also lead to obesity and health problems. 

Your team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services understands the importance of pet treats. This blog is to give you insights into pet treats and suggest forms of reward that are healthy alternatives to treats.

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More Creative Ways to Keep Your Dog Active In Winter

When the days are short and the nights longer, it’s easy for most of us — including our dogs — to get bored and restless. Add the cold and busyness of the holiday season, and those long winter months can lead to boredom, behavior problems, and general lethargy. Our pets need daily exercise and enrichment to stay at their best, but winter can throw a wrench in those activities. 

We’ve written about fun cold-weather activities and indoor enrichment. The team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services is back with eight more suggestions to help keep your dog active in winter. With a little bit of creativity and effort, your furry friend won’t be bored through the cold months.

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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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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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Pet Weight Loss Facts: No Pain, No Gain?

Overweight cat sitting on floor

Weight Loss is Confusing in the Pet World Too

In the world of diets and weight management, it’s hard to separate fact from fiction. One diet says to eat only healthy fats, while another says bacon is fine. One weight loss regime focuses on healthy protein, while another has you fasting on green smoothies. Confusing? Yes! We are seeing the same confusion around why pets gain weight and what they should eat.

It’s great to keep your pet at a healthy weight and avoid obesity, which causes many health problems. But, how does a pet owner gauge a healthy weight and the right approach to keeping fur friends on the right dietary track? The team at OVRS is here to separate fact from myths.

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Party Animal: Tips for Keeping Your Pet Safe During Parties

pet safe during parties

What crowd-loving canine (or curious cat) doesn’t love to be the center of attention during any festivity? Some pets are highly socialized and enjoy all of the pats and treats, while others are curious or want to take advantage of food opportunities. Other pets may feel anxious or overwhelmed by the noise and the crowd.

This holiday, ask yourself whether your pet should be part of the reveling, or whether you should make other arrangements. Think ahead about your pet and plan how to keep pet safe during parties while you focus on your guests. Here are pet-safe party tips from the team at OVRS.

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Therapeutic Diets for Pets: Using the Power of Nutrition to Heal

therapeutic diets for petsThere is no denying that the food we eat has an impact on our health, energy, and overall wellbeing. It is, therefore, no surprise that we have found the same to be true for our animal companions. Where once the family Fido was given leftover scraps, or inexpensive commercial kibble, we now find that quality nutrition is important in determining quality of life and longevity.

Prescription diets, or now more often referred to as therapeutic diets, for pets have come a long way since their introduction a few decades ago. But, what does a therapeutic diet offer, versus a commercial diet, and how can it actually benefit your pet?

Oakland Veterinary Referral Services is here to give you some food for thought.

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Turkey Troubles: Pet Pancreatitis and the Holiday Season

pet pancreatitisThanksgiving is just around the corner, and most of us are anxiously awaiting all of the delicious foods. The turkey and gravy, the stuffing, the fluffy rolls fresh from the oven, and – oh boy – the pumpkin pie! Thanksgiving is truly a time for giving thanks for all of our bounties, including the delectable dishes.

Unfortunately, the holiday season is also rife with pet emergency cases relating to pancreatitis and other gastrointestinal problems. Your friends at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services want to explain why pet pancreatitis is a serious emergency that should give you pause before letting Fido partake in the holiday feast.

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Dog Treats: The Good and The Ugly

dog treatsEvery pet owner loves seeing their dog’s face light up in anticipation of a treat. It feels so good that we’re tempted to feed them treats all day long. Because we also want our pets to live long, healthy lives, it is best to give them good-quality treats in reasonable quantities.

There are so many treats on the market that your biggest challenge will be choosing the right ones. As you navigate the world of dog treats, here is a little help in determining which treats are good and which are just plain ugly.

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Pet Technology: What’s the latest?

pet technologyWhen we’re away from our pets, we want to know they are safe, happy and staying out of trouble. With the latest Pet Technology, we’re able to interact remotely, keep our pets calm or entertained, and even monitor their health and safety. What are some of the best new Pet Tech items on the market?

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