Helping Your Arthritic Pet Get More Exercise

A senior pet sits looking upwards, moth agape.

Senior pets (and those who have had an orthopedic injury) are prone to arthritis. If your pet suffers from chronic arthritis, you may believe that they should avoid exercise and take it easy as much as possible. While there are reasons to avoid jumping or other rambunctious activities, all pets – including those with arthritis – need some level of exercise.

To help you get your arthritic pet moving and feeling better, try our suggestions for low impact exercise. It will have them moving and feeling better!


Diabetes in Pets: Are You in the Know?

iStock_000002977378_Large (1)With more pets leading a sedentary life and the increase in pet obesity, more dogs and cats are developing diabetes at some point in their lifetimes. This disease is an important one for pet owners to be familiar with. Do you understand what pet diabetes is, what the symptoms look like, and why it is so serious? If not, be sure to keep reading so that you can be in the know about diabetes in pets.

The Pathogenesis of Diabetes in Pets

When a pet eats a meal, the nutrients are broken down into parts that are usable to the body as energy. Fiber and starches (carbohydrates) are broken down into glucose, which is absorbed into the bloodstream then transferred into cells. In order for this transfer of glucose into the body’s cells, a hormone called insulin is required. Continue…

Nose to Tail: How to Perform a Pet Skin Check

dog trainingA pet’s skin is his or her largest organ, so monitoring and maintaining good skin health is an important part of having a happy, healthy pet. Allergies, irritations, infections, parasites, lumps and bumps can all affect pet skin. Take the time to learn how to perform a thorough pet skin check to be sure you are keeping your four-legged friend in tip-top shape.

How to Perform a Pet Skin Check

It is probably best to sit down once a month and really look at your pet closely. You may wish to keep a small notebook to document findings. Get comfortable in a well-lit area of your home. It is probably easiest to put small dogs or cats up on a counter so that you can really see what you are doing, but your lap will work too. Start at the nose and work your way back to the tail. Be sure to look at the following: Continue…

The Pet Owner’s Guide to Triage and the Veterinary Emergency Room

OVRS_iStock_000022610052_Large (2)No one plans on their pet having an emergency, but it is bound to happen eventually if you have animals in your home. Visiting the veterinary emergency room can be scary, especially if it is at a facility other than your pet’s regular veterinarian.

Learn what you need to know about the veterinary emergency room at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services and how things work so that you know what to expect should you have to visit us unexpectedly. This includes understanding how we prioritize the order in which pets are seen in the ER. Continue…

Ear Polyps in Pets: What Pet Owners Need to Hear

OVRS_iStock_000017177169_LargeMost times an ear infection is a pretty easy problem to solve. Sometimes, though, we will run into an infection that won’t clear or that keeps on coming back. In this instance, it is likely that there is something going on that is predisposing that ear to have problems.

One of the more common diagnoses in complicated ear infections in pets are ear polyps. Find out what you need to know about ear polyps in pets and how they affect your animal. Continue…

Zoonotic Diseases and Your Pets

iStock_000020257269_MediumAre you familiar with the term ‘zoonotic’?

Zoonotic diseases are those which can be passed between animals and humans. And, with more and more homes in the United States having pets, it is important to understand these types of diseases and how to prevent them.


Rabies may seem like a far-fetched possibility, but a lot of people forget how scary rabies can be, and how common the disease is. The rabies virus can affect any mammal and is transmitted through saliva. In all mammals it invades the central nervous system, causing neurological signs and eventually death.

There is no cure for rabies, so it is very important keep your pet up to date on his or her vaccination. Pets who are unvaccinated and potentially exposed to rabies are recommended by the CDC to be euthanized or kept under strict isolation for 6 months. Continue…

Unexplained Weight Loss in Pets

iStock_000010144870_SmallWith over half of the nation’s pet population being obese, many times weight loss in our dogs and cats can be a good thing. Sometimes, though, when a pet’s weight loss is sudden or unexplained, it can be a sign that something is wrong. This type of weight loss should never be ignored and is important to have checked out right away.

What To Do If Your Pet Has Lost Weight

If you are noticing that your pet is looking a little trimmer than usual, it is important to think about any changes that may be affecting his or her calorie intake and expenditure.

A change in your pet’s diet or activity level might easily explain weight loss. If this is the case, assess whether the weight loss was necessary or whether you need to make changes to allow for weight gain. If you are not sure, consult with your veterinarian. Continue…

The Problem with Plump Pets

As a country, many of us have learned to turn a blind eye to pets who are overweight. We coo and giggle over fat cats and pudgy pooches, when really there’s nothing funny about it. With over 50% of American pets tipping the scales, obesity in our nation’s pets has truly become an epidemic.

Even just a few extra pounds on your dog or cat can increase his or her risk for some very serious medical problems. Common problems that are directly influenced by weight include: Continue…