7 Conditions That Affect Small Dogs

Small dog breeds are popular with many pet owners due to their small stature and big personalities. Top breeds like Pugs, Chihuahuas, Terriers, Pomeranians, and other tiny dogs are trendy with those with limited space and a passion for their convenient and adorable size. Small dogs, though, are at greater risk for specific health conditions that primarily affect the minuscule breeds.

The team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services is here to explain some of the conditions that affect small dogs. Understanding the challenges of small dog breeds can hopefully help you better care for your best friend.

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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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Addressing Behavior Problems in Dogs

A dog stands defiantly looking with a sandal within its bite.

What steps should you take to address behavior problems in your dog? In a perfect world, our beloved pooches would be wonderful in every way. They would always respond to our commands and never cause trouble. The reality, though, is that most dogs do have a few behavior issues. You can easily address some behaviors with basic training and socialization, but sometimes that isn’t enough. What steps do we take in addressing more serious behavior problems in dogs?  

The team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services is here to address behavior problems in dogs and offer some helpful solutions.

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The Origins of 10 Dog Breeds and What They Were Bred to Do

How did we end up with so many dog breeds? Man domesticated dogs roughly 15,000 years ago and they have been man (and woman’s) best friend since. Dogs roamed with us as protectors and to ward off other wildlife and would-be intruders. They also kept rodents and other pests away. Of course, they quickly became our companions, tried and true.

What about the many dog breeds we see today; why do we have so many and why were some of them bred to do certain “jobs”? The team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services is glad you asked. 

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Red Eyes, Squinting and Other Dog Eye Problems

A dog eye being examined by a techincian

Red eyes, excessive tearing, green or yellow discharge, squinting one or both eyes, and trouble seeing are dog eye problems that indicate you should have your pet’s eyes checked by a veterinarian.

What causes these eye problems in dogs? We’re here to answer these questions and emphasize the importance of vision health for your pets. 

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Cloudy Vision: Cataracts in Dogs

dog with cataracts in his eyes

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 Sweet Spot: Why Do Dogs Kick When You Scratch Their Belly?

Have you ever noticed that when you scratch your dog’s belly, something unusual occurs? It happens every time you hit the “sweet spot.” You know the one. Suddenly, your dog starts kicking his back leg like he’s running on his side. 

Dogs are full of quirky habits, but this one is puzzling. What is it about that sweet spot that makes a dog’s leg twitch or kick? Are they ticklish or is it something else?

Oakland Veterinary Referral Services takes a look at this funny mystery of why dogs kick when you scratch their belly.

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Is Your Dog’s Shedding Related to Stress?

Shedding Pet

Your Dog’s Shedding — Normal or Excess?

This time of year, when the sun begins to shine a little longer each day and the heat index starts to rise, you may notice something… Your dog is leaving little hair tumbleweeds across the tiles. Shedding can be a major problem for some breeds, and many pet owners have the lint rollers in hand and vacuums going strong.

Shedding is a normal process of keeping your dog’s skin and coat healthy. There are times, though, when hair loss can signal a larger issue. The team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services wants to tackle the question of shedding and explore the causes and conditions of excess shedding.

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Dog Blood Donors: Save a Life with Buddies for Life!


dog blood donors

Dog Blood Donors

Most of us have given blood to help someone else. Did you know that your dog can be a blood donor to help other canines in need? Oakland Veterinary Referral Services has an in-house canine blood bank called Buddies for Life.

OVRS collects and stores blood products that are used to treat a variety of doggie problems including blood loss, immune mediated diseases, genetic disorders, and more. We successfully provide over 400 blood transfusions per year and save many canine lives in the process.

Our volunteers and dog blood donors are the true heroes who make this possible. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you and your fur friend could be one of these heroes?

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The Dog Owner’s Guide to TPLO Surgery

Dog walking in sling after TPLO surgery

Has your Veterinarian recommended Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy (TPLO) surgery for your dog? TPLO is one of the most widely used procedures in repairing cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) tears in dogs (and sometimes in cats). In most cases, TPLO surgery is superior to that of other orthopedic surgeries. It is particularly successful in large breeds and those with advanced joint degeneration and CCL ruptures.

Many dogs suffer injuries related to CCL tears, fractures, and other orthopedic occurrences. These injuries require a highly skilled team of veterinary surgeons. This guide explains what TPLO is, in what cases it is needed, and why it’s effective. We also provide tips to maintain your dog’s orthopedic health post-surgery.

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