Bad Mom No Biscuit~Gambler Blows A Moccasin

Bad Mom No Biscuit~Gambler Blows A Moccasin

A couple weeks ago Gamblers brother Easy from across the pond tore his toenail off you can read about it here. Gambler not wanting to have his brother feeling like he was the only one to blow a moccasin decided to blow one of his own the first day of spring training at the Sandspring ranch. On my day off I set up some blinds for G & G, we ran our blinds, set up camp for the evening and John asked why Gambler was holding his leg up…..ahhhh that would be because he broke his toenail. This would be the third toenail that Gambler has broken off. Second time while out training, the other time while attacking the vacuum.

Rut roo not good to go for a ride with mom on a work day.

This was totally my fault, I noticed over the weekend that his nails were getting long and that they needed to be trimmed but of course I ran out of time and didn’t get to it now poor Gambler had to suffer. ūüė¶

Broken back toenail.

He just took off the top part of the nail.

Other toenails very long. Bad Mom!

The toenail on the right is the one he broke off over a year ago, it still hasn’t decided to grow back like a regular nail. The toenail with the arrow by it is showing the quik (blood vein in the toenail- pink area) and the white tip of the toenail that is over grown and should be cut off so it doesn’t break off.

How I trim toenails.

Trimming equipment.

There are different types of nail trimmers, I like those big orange ones. You should also have on hand kwik stop to stop bleeding if you cut one too short, styptic pencils can be used too but will sting.

Gambler laying on his side.

Since I had help I had Gambler lay on his side. The holder put her elbow across his neck and used her left hand to hold his lower front leg and then put her right arm across his stomach right in front of his back legs and held his lower back leg. With those legs held if he struggles he can’t get up. I then trim the tips off the nails, I trim the skinny area right before it gets to the thick part of the nail shown above by the arrow. If they are light nails you can see the quik in the nail which is pink so you want to cut right before the quik.

Starting in the middle.

I start taking the middle of the nail off then I rotate the clippers to take some off of each side and then go back to the middle and take more off the top.

Rotating to the sides.

Opps I cut one to short.

If you happen to cut one to short, you can use kwik stop powder or corn starch to stop the bleeding. Styptic pencils can be used too but do sting so we use those on asleep animals.

Bleeding stopped.

A dremel can be used to smooth out the rough edges.

Trimmed up.

Don’t be like me and wait for your dog to break a toenail before you trim them. Granted they can still break a toenail that is trimmed up but most likely it happens when they are long. This was a minor break once it was trimmed up and cleaned up Gambler was good as new and back training. Can’t keep this hard running dog down at all.

monday mischief 

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Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 2: Vaginitis

Today’s Monday Mischief post is the second in the six part series on Nellie’s Health Series. This post should of come after the urinalysis post since this is how I found out Nellie has vaginitis but I thought this made for a mischief post so bear with me on the order.

Monday: Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 2: Vaginitis (when your male dog sticks his face where it doesn’t belong may mean there is a problem).

What you mean this is a problem? I don’t think it’s a problem at all!

Yes, yes you recognized the culprit, it’s the Gman to the rescue to tell you there might be a problem with Nellie. Gambler is constantly sticking his face where it doesn’t belong.

A frequent scene at out house.

After we got the results of the bloodwork the doctor wanted a urinalysis done on Nellie’s urine (more on that this Thursday). I got a urine sample, ran the urinalysis and the results were “are the white cells coming from the bladder or from the vaginal tract”, we needed to rule out a “bladder infection” vs a “vaginitis”.

I’m telling ya “Dr. G” says there is a problem Houston!

In order to find out where the white cells were originating from (bladder vs vagina) we needed to collect a sterile urine sample that came right from the bladder (more on that Wednesday). The sterile urine sample had no white blood cells in it so it ruled out a bladder infection in which I didn’t think she had a bladder infection because she wasn’t showing any signs of an infection which are: frequent urination, blood in urine, accidents in the house.

The supplies needed to check for a vaginitis.

To find out if the white blood cells were coming from the vaginal tract we needed to a vaginal cytology. In order to do this you take a sterile long q-tip wet it with water and then insert it into the vagina and roll to pick up the cells. You then put that sample on a microscope slide, stain it then read it.

View from the microscope.

The big round purple cells are epithelial cells which are normal in the vagina, all skin contains epithelial cells. All the other small purple structures are bacteria which ranged from cocci to rods. Some bacteria is normal as it isn’t a sterile environment but this slide contains too numerous of bacteria which means there is a problem. There were a few white cells but not like what was seen in the urine sample. The urine sample I ran was the first morning catch (which is the one the doctor wants to interpret the results correctly) so the white blood cells had time to collect in the vaginal tract and then be flushed out with the first urine sample. My boss wanted another urine sample from later in the day and there were a few white blood cells in that one so if not flushed out there is more white blood cells. Now why are these white cells present? It can be a normal vaginitis or it could mean there is a mass in the vaginal canal that is causing it. Nellie’s diagnosis is a vaginitis but after research on other cases like hers we decided not to treat the vaginitis because again she isn’t showing any symptoms of a problem so we are going to leave it alone until a problem arises. Why, well because if we start treating with antibiotics to get rid of the white cells and bacteria it may disrupt the balance and then she will show signs in the future and have to be continually treated. I am going to start her on a probiotic to see if we can’t get the bacteria balance back to normal.

Can Gambler stay out of my backend now?

ahhhhh NO!

I will check Nellie in a few weeks and if we get the same results we will look further as to why the white cells are present but for now we will leave her alone, well at least I will leave her alone. Gambler has other ideas.

Stop back tomorrow for:
Tuesday: Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 3: Bloodwork, why routine bloodwork is a good idea.

monday mischief

This is a Blog Hop. Thanks to Alfie’s Blog, Snoopy’s Dog Blog , Luna, a Dog’s Life , and My Brown Newfies for setting up this hop. Please go to any of the sponsoring blogs to find out who else has been mischievous.

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Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 1: Radiographs

This Black And White Sunday starts off the first out of a  six part series on Senior Wellness. Since it is Black And White Sunday I start my series with Radiographs. Nellie is a senior at 10 years old. Her annual physical exam and vaccinations were coming due this month. A couple other issues cropped up that I wanted to discuss with the doctor so I compiled my list and brought Nellie with me to work last Monday. To talk about everything she had done and why Senior Wellness is important I broke it down into six parts.

Sunday: Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 1: Radiographs

Monday: Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 2: Vaginitis

Tuesday: Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 3: Bloodwork

Wednesday: Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 4: Cystocentesis

Thursday: Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 5: Urinalysis

Friday: Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 6: Pulled Tendon

Where we going mom?

Since I am a Veterinary Technician I am hyper vigilant on noticing things with my animals. I am constantly looking at them, feeling them over and sometimes making myself think there is a problem. For sometime when Nellie lays next to me her belly looks funny. Funny you ask, yup funny my technical term for it. I couldn’t quite put my finger on what I thought I was seeing. She has been sneaking off and eating deer carcass’s so she has been coming back all bloated and looking like a engorged wood tick. I thought A: she might just be getting fat, B: she is older does she have cushing’s disease, C: ¬†do I see a lump in her belly. All of the above needs addressing hence the car ride with me to work.

Nellie started out with a full physical exam this is important for every animal at least once a year and for seniors it’s a good idea to have a physical exam twice a year as things can change just like that. It’s better to “catch” things earlier than later.

What is a full physical exam? It is a head to tail exam of each part of the animals body.

1. Checking for changes in the eyes.

2. Checking for changes/infections in the ears.

3. Checking teeth for broken teeth/tarter/gingivitis/tumors.

4. Checking lymph nodes below lower jaw, pre scapular, poplitial, ingunial.

5. Checking heart and lungs for murmurs and respiratory problems.

6. Checking abdominal cavity for masses.

7. Checking rectum for masses, temperature, parasites.

8. Checking whole body for any masses and abnormalities.

Nellie’s physical exam went great, she is looking and doing well for a senior pet. Her liver felt slightly larger (which can be normal in older animals) and what about the funny thing I was seeing with her belly?

When I lay on my left side you can see a alien in my belly.

While relaxing over the lunch hour the alien appeared so I had the doctor look and feel it. It was right about where her hair is thin (white) on the picture right in front of her back legs. The doctor thought it was her spleen. The dogs spleen is very long and the “tail” of it can “poke out”. But why is it “poking out”? It could be normal or it could be enlarged because of a mass on it. So to find out you start with abdominal radiographs to see how things look inside.

Right lateral is the most preferred position.

A ventral/dorsal (on the back) is second preferred.

After the two radiographs are taken they are developed so the doctor can read them.

Right lateral

Ventral dorsal view.

There was something suspicious on the right lateral view so we did another radiograph and did a left lateral this time to see if they could see the same thing.

left lateral

The suspicious area wasn’t on the left lateral so not to much of a concern. The radiographs can’t rule out a mass there was nothing obvious so the next step would be a abdominal ultrasound which will be done at a later date.

Nellie’s liver wasn’t a concern either after looking at the radiographs.

She was such a good patient for her radiographs, she didn’t move a muscle. Nellie did receive her annual vaccinations this day as there were no concerns not to give them.

Stop back tomorrow for:¬†Monday: Senior Wellness ~ Nellie’s Health Series Part 2: Vaginitis


We are joining Dachshund Nola & Sugar The Golden Retriever for the Black and White Sunday Blog Hop.

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Glory’s First Breeding Via TCI

This breeding with Glory has been over a year in the making. Last summer I did my research on available stud dogs, picked one and was waiting for Glory to come into heat (which was suppose to be after she had her OFA test’s done). The best laid plans didn’t work last year, she came into heat before she was two which meant we couldn’t do her OFA test’s in essence we had to wait on breeding her the following year. We could of bred her in the spring after we did the testing but we train and run hunt tests all summer long a litter wouldn’t let us be able to do that so we do our limited breeding’s in the fall/winter.

So I get to meet my boyfriend today?

Where’s my boyfriend?

Are you bringing in my boyfriend?

So you know that we chose “Silas” to be the stud dog. Silas lives in Oklahoma. Normally the bitch would go to the stud dogs house and they would breed naturally any where’s from one to three times during the bitches standing heat period (a bitches heat cycle can range from 2-3 weeks in length with average time of standing heat being at 10-13 days). Since Silas lives 13 hours from us and we had too many things going on in November I planned on doing a artificial insemination for this breeding. There are a couple of methods that can be done for a AI. If the stud dog is alive (which Silas is) and his semen quality is good (he has produced several litters in the past) you would use a fresh chilled sample and have it implanted one of three ways.

Three types of Artificial Insemination

1. Vaginally – semen deposited into the vaginal tract

2. Transcervical – semen deposited into the cervix using a endoscope via the vagina

3. Surgical  Рsurgical procedure where semen is deposited into the uterus, used most often with frozen semen and in older bitches that the doctor would like to visualize the uterus

I have done a vaginal and surgical AI with Nellie in the past which both produced a litter of puppy’s. I debated and debated which way to go with Glory. This is Glory’s first litter, she is young and healthy so there should be no reason on her end not to become pregnant doing a AI. But which AI will it be?

We’re in the conception room.

Hello lovely technician Brenda.

After some long deliberation I decided the best route for Glory would be the transcervical route. I figured we would only get one chance at a insemination and wanted the best percentage of her taking which is over 80% so we went for it. When doing AI breeding’s you need to run progesterone tests on the bitch so you can pin point when they are going to ovulate so you can do the breeding on the correct day for the best chance of conception. Glory had four progesterone tests run. Once I noticed she started her heat cycle I had one run which the results were low <.02 the reproduction doctor told me I could wait 4 days and run another one so the next one was done 7 days into her heat cycle, the results were .6, still low so the next one three days later. The next test was done 10 days into her heat and the results were 2.6 which happened to be on a Monday. Dogs ovulate when the progesterone reaches 5, the eggs need 48-72 hrs to mature before they can be impregnated with the semen. Dr said next test Wednesday. I knew we would be getting close by watching Glory and watching the discharge coming out her vagina (the color was changing from dark red to pink). I told the stud dog owner we were getting close and to be on standby. The results on Wednesday were 8.6, she ovulated so 911 the stud dog owner and have him collected and the semen overnight-ed for the AI on Thursday.

I use Veterinary Village for all my reproduction work. Dr. Greer has done my repro work on Nellie and gave me two nice litters so she will be the one doing the insemination on Glory.

Dr. Greer holding Glory as the table is being elevated to the correct height.

Dog daddy John holding her front, Brenda the tech holding the rear.

What is TCI?

TCI is Transcervical Insemination. How this is done is explained by the American Kennel Club website:

The transcervical insemination (TCI) is performed with the bitch in a standing position. No sedation nor anesthesia is required. A fiber optic cystourethoscope is used vaginally to visualize the opening to the cervix. A flexible catheter is maneuvered through the cervix into the uterus. It is important that the breeder realize that the veterinarian is not visualizing the inside of the uterus and this technique does not allow for evaluation of the uterus.

The TCI procedure is visualized on a television monitor and does allow for examination of the vaginal tract, however. The semen is gently pushed through the catheter from a syringe. The veterinarian can visualize that the semen flows easily into the uterus and does not flow back into the vaginal tract.

The transcervical insemination does not replace the surgical insemination as it does not allow for uterine evaluation, but is a significant improvement over the vaginal method of artificial insemination. The TCI is recommended for any type semen, especially frozen and fresh-cooled and can significantly increase conception when poor quality semen and lowered sperm numbers are used. The TCI technique should be used in bitches less than 5 years of age where there is not a reason to suspect uterine changes or uterine disease.

Getting everything prepared.

Let’s get this show on the road.

We were in and out in 30 minutes. Glory was a little uncomfortable when the first catheter was placed and kept in there while getting ready for the endoscope to be inserted. Once the endoscope was inserted then she calmed down and stood there for the procedure. Here are two video’s of the procedure. The first one is over a minute long and the second one is over 5 minutes long.

December 18 will be Glory’s ultrasound to see if she is pregnant. I could hardly wait for her to come into heat now I can hardly wait to find out the results. Thanks to Dr. Greer and her two technicians Brenda and Marissa who helped out with this breeding. Paws crossed!


This ‘N That Thursday

Today we are joining¬†2 Brown Dawgs¬†&¬†co-host¬†Ruckus the Eskie¬†¬†for their This ‚ÄėN That Thursday‚Äôs blog hop!
This is what they have to say about the hop,

A little of this and a little of that and everything in between…

‚ÄúThis ‚ÄėN That Thursday is for¬†anything¬†you want!¬† Maybe¬†you want to post about unrelated topics, or each topic isn‚Äôt quite long enough to make up a whole post, or you have awards to share, or you have one long post‚Ķanything goes!¬† So grab the button and join the hop!‚ÄĚ
Nellie’s Vet Visit
Last Friday I took Nellie with me to work for her yearly vaccinations and heartworm check as well as an examination. As a senior pet it is very important to have a examination at least twice a year to make sure everything is working correctly. Diseases can pop up suddenly, you can not see what is going on with the internal organs so it is important to also run a yearly chemisty panel and complete blood count ( I did this last October, everything was normal). 
Examining her teeth.

Examining her teeth.

For a nine year old girl Nellie’s teeth are doing very well. She had a dental cleaning 2 years ago when she was spayed.

Checking her lymph nodes.

Checking her lymph nodes.

The lymph nodes are palpated to make sure they are of normal size. If lymph nodes are reacting to an infection or if lymphoma in them they will be enlarged. You want to catch lymphoma early.

Listing to her heart.

Listing to her heart.

The heart is asculted to make sure no heart murmurs are heard ¬†or if there was a previous heart¬†murmur¬†it hasn’t gotten worse which may mean early heart problems. Nellie’s heart sounded fine.

Palpating her belly.

Palpating her belly.

The abdomen is palpated to make sure no tumors are felt. The spleen and intestinal tract are known for getting benine and malganent tumors. Her abdomen was normal. 

Nellie weighed in at 74#. She is ~10# over weight. We are working on taking that weight off with diet food and exercise. 

Nellie was vaccinated for Bordetella, Lepto and Lymes. Her heartworm test was negative. She is good to go for another 6 months when she will have another examination done. 

A very special thank you goes out to Lydia, Rosalyn and Sugar from See Beautiful for the special gift I got in the mail last week. I didn’t get the package until after my See Beautiful blog post was posted so I am taking time now to say thank you for such a wonderful See Beautiful package which included a beautiful hand written note, some forget me not seeds, a bumper sticker and my favorite¬†mimosa hand soap that smells out of this world. Thank you for seeing the beauty in me and sharing your beauty with me.¬†¬†


A little of That:

Whatcha eating?

Whatcha eating?

nom nom nom

nom nom nom

MK has taken to helping herself to the dogs food while they are eating. Glory shares, Gambler growls.

So that wraps it up for today, why don’t you hop on over to 2 Brown Dawgs & co-host Ruckus the Eskie see what their up to and grab the badge and join the hopping fun!
Thank you 2browndawgs for starting and hosting This ‘N That Thursday. I thought this was a great hop and I can’t wait to see what you and Ruckus have in store for the next hop.

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This ‘N That Thursday


Today we are joining 2 Brown Dawgs for their This ‚ÄėN That Thursday‚Äôs blog hop!

This is what she has to say about the hop,

“A little of this and a little of that and everything in between…

Wednesday’s Trip To The Vet.

I took Gambler to Spring Harbor Animal Hospital to have his hips and elbows x-rayed. The x-rays were then submitted to OFA (Orthopedic Foundation for Animals) where he will get a rating of either Excellent, Good or Fair on his hips and hopefully not a dysplastic rating. He will either get Normal or Grade 1, 2 or 3 his elbows. You can do preliminary x-rays starting at 4 months up until 24 months. You get a rating on the x-rays but the rating is not entered into the database until the dog is 24 months or older and the x-rays are retaken. This is the age that OFA states the hips are fully developed and if there is a problem you should see it by this age. I didn’t do preliminary x-rays on Gambler. He turned 24 months this past Monday so I took him in on Wednesday.

2013-05-15 08.42.58

2013-05-15 08.44.53

The OFA Mission: To promote the health and welfare of companion animals through a reduction in the incidence of genetic disease

If you are going to be breeding dogs that have a genetic predisposition to hip dysplasia then you should be a responsible breeder and have OFA xrays done. If you are going to do performance events on your dog it is a good idea to have the hips and elbows xrayed to make sure they are sound. They don’t have to be sent into OFA xrays but a veterinarian should evaluate them.

Link to OFA breeders guidelines.

Copied from the OFA website:

Radiographs of animals 24 months of age or older are independently evaluated by three randomly selected, board-certified veterinary radiologists from a pool of 20 to 25 consulting radiologists throughout the USA in private practice and academia. Each radiologist evaluates the animal’s hip status considering the breed, sex, and age. There are approximately 9 different anatomic areas of the hip that are evaluated.Anatomic areas of the hip evaluated for HD

  1. Craniolateral acetabular rim
  2. Cranial acetabular margin
  3. Femoral head (hip ball)
  4. Fovea capitus (normal flattened area on hip ball)
  5. Acetabular notch
  6. Caudal acetabular rim
  7. Dorsal acetabular margin
  8. Junction of femoral head and neck
  9. Trochanteric fossa

The radiologist is concerned with deviations in these structures from the breed normal. Congruency and confluence of the hip joint (degree of fit) are also considered which dictate the conformation differences within normal when there is an absence of radiographic findings consistent with HD. The radiologist will grade the hips with one of seven different physical (phenotypic) hip conformations: normal which includes excellent, good, or fair classifications, borderline or dysplastic which includes mild, moderate, or severe classifications.

Seven classifications are needed in order to establish heritability information (indexes) for a given breed of dog. Definition of these phenotypic classifications are as follows:

  1. Excellent
  2. Good
  3. Fair
  4. Borderline
  5. Mild
  6. Moderate
  7. Severe

(See What Do Hip Grades Mean for more detail on the classifications)

The hip grades of excellent, good and fair are within normal limits and are given OFA numbers. This information is accepted by AKC on dogs with permanent identification and is in the public domain. Radiographs of borderline, mild, moderate and severely dysplastic hip grades are reviewed by the OFA radiologist and a radiographic report is generated documenting the abnormal radiographic findings. Unless the owner has chosen the open database, dysplastic hip grades are closed to public information.

2013-05-15 08.54.10

They don’t sedate the dogs unless absolutely necessary, they do muzzle as that has a calming effect on the dogs. They use digital x-rays so the x-ray came up on the screen for us to see. You can see that the gentleman (Dr. Link) needed to turn in Gamblers knees towards each other to get his knee caps to be aligned straight up and down. This puts the hips into position.

11666_9688 Joann S Stancer_1_s0

2013-05-15 08.55.32

11666_9688 Joann S Stancer_2_s0

Flexing Gamblers elbow to get a nice view of his joint in his elbow.

This is what they are looking for when viewing the elbows.

Taken from OFA website:

Elbow dysplasia is a general term used to identify an inherited polygenic disease in the elbow of dogs. Three specific etiologies make up this disease and they can occur independently or in conjunction with one another. These etiologies include:

  1. Pathology involving the medial coronoid of the ulna (FCP)
  2. Osteochondritis of the medial humeral condyle in the elbow joint (OCD)
  3. Ununited anconeal process (UAP)

2013-05-15 09.02.23

All done and a happy camper. The x-rays will go off to OFA and within a month we should have his ratings.

Wednesday First Trip Of Year To The Lake

It was a nice warm sunny day so I loaded up the gang and took them to the lake for some water fun. I mainly wanted to practice with Gambler and Glory jumping off a dock. They are entered into a Dog Jumping competition hosted by UAD (Ultimate Air Dogs) this coming June at the UKC Premier. They did a small amount of dog jumping last fall so time to get practicing again. Gambler needed a couple jumps of the side of the pier before he figured out he needed to jump off the end of it. When he got it he got it.



Glory was so excited to be at the lake and to retrieve her bumper. She got up on the pier was jumping all over the place, I threw the bumper off the end and away she went, never hesitated at all. She was so wound up. She is entered in total dog competition at the UKC premier so she needs a qualifying score with her jump with UAD, so I needed to make sure she could do it before we go.



Norman and Nellie had fun swimming and retrieving bumpers.


This concludes This ‚ÄėN That Thursday. Stop by 2 Brown Dawgs and say thanks for the Blog Hop!

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February is National Pet Dental Health Month

I’m a little late announcing that February is National Pet Dental Health Month. Better late than never I figure. Dental health should be a daily routine in a pets household. It is¬†Nationally¬†recognized¬†in February to get the¬†awareness¬†out. It is a time for veterinarians to ¬†campaign for Dental Health and help spread the word to keep your pets mouth and teeth healthy.

Taken from the AVMA website.

February is National Pet Dental Health Month

Don’t turn your nose to Fido’s or Fluffy’s bad breath! That odor might signify a serious health risk, with the potential to damage not only your pet’s teeth and gums but its internal organs as well.

To address the significance of oral health care for pets, the AVMA and several veterinary groups are sponsoring National Pet Dental Health Month in February.

Click on the links below to learn more about National Pet Dental Health Month, and how you can improve the dental (and overall) health of your pets.


Dr. Sheldon Rubin gives easy, step-by-step instructions on how to teach a dog or cat to accept a daily tooth brushing. He also describes healthy treats, and explains the true risks of periodontal disease in pets.

Periodontal disease is the most common clinical condition in cats and dogs even though it’s completely preventable. Dr. Cindy Charlier explains what periodontal disease is and how we can prevent our pets from getting it.


In this AVMA Animal Tracks podcast, Dr. Jan Bellows talks about the importance of dental health for our pets.


Dog breath is nothing to smile about … even for a cat. View the National Pet Dental Health Month ad from the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association.


Show us your pets’ pearly whites! We’re looking for photos of your pets’ beautiful teeth ‚ÄĒ and we mean any kind of pets: dogs, cats, horses, bunnies, ferrets, goats, cows … fuzzy, furred or finned, you name it. After all, pets need dental care, too. View and submit photos on our Flickr group: Pearly White Pets, on our Pet Dental Health Month Facebook event page, or TwitPic your photos and use the hashtag #pearlywhitepets.


View the AVMA’s press release on National Pet Dental Health Month.


While February is National Pet Dental Health Month, dental health should be a daily ritual for pet owners all year long.

AAHA dental care guidelines for dogs and cats.

The pictures of Glory were taken during her young modeling career at Harmony Pet Care.

Glory teeth brushing

You can start brushing your pets teeth at any age. Getting them use to it as a young animal will have the best results. Even know they will loose their baby teeth around 3-4 months of age it still is a good idea to get them used to the idea of having something in their mouth. They will have all their¬†permanent by 6 months of age. You should use a soft toothbrush that is the right fit for the mouth. The young and small animals may need a pediatric toothbrush while older larger animals can use an adult tooth brush. After you get them used to the idea of brushing you maybe able to use an electric tooth brush like I do when they are adults. Even know you use an human toothbrush you should never use human toothpaste on the animals. It contains an ingredient to make it foam up and since animals don’t rinse and spit and have to swallow the toothpaste it should be appealing to them.
Video of Gambler getting his teeth brushed with a electric toothbrush.
At Harmony Pet Care   we have products made by a couple different companies one is called Virbac. We use their C.E.T. Enzymatic Toothpaste for Dogs & Cats: Dual-Enzyme System toothpaste formulated for dogs and cats to provide natural antibacterial action and to inhibit the formation of plaque. Also acts quickly to help eliminate mouth odors. These toothpastes come in 3 appealing flavors and contain no foaming agents, so they are safe for pets to swallow. Poultry, malt, and vanilla-mint flavors are well accepted by pets to help make brushing easy. Available in 2.5 oz (70 g) tubes.
I start by putting some toothpaste on the brush, I let the animal sniff it and if they want to taste it even better. I have dogs sit and place my left hand over the top of their muzzle, I left up their lips and put the brush inside and start slowly moving the brush back and fourth. I make the beginning sessions short and use lots of praise. I then let them lick the rest of the toothpaste off the brush. After a few days of taking it slow you should be able to brush all the teeth. When brushing a cats teeth I would put them on a counter or table or kneel on the floor with the cat between my legs.
In the above picture there is a product called Oravet made by Merial: While other products may remove plaque and tartar, OraVet is the first plaque prevention system. It significantly reduces plaque and tartar formation by creating an invisible barrier that helps prevent bacteria from attaching to your pet’s teeth.This breakthrough approach to oral healthcare begins in the clinic when your veterinarian applies the OraVet Barrier Sealant after your pet’s dental cleaning. It continues at home when you apply the OraVet Plaque Prevention Gel weekly to your pet’s teeth and gum line.This system helps reduce plaque and calculus formation on your pet’s teeth between dental cleanings.

C.E.T. Hextra Chews

C.E.T. Hextra Chews

C.E.T. HEXtra chews:

For daily use in dogs as a chew to help remove plaque and reduce tartar.

  • Provides a well-known antiseptic effect and helps remove plaque and reduce tartar. Chews are coated with exclusive patented 10% solution of chlorhexidine gluconate.
  • Contains beefhide for natural abrasive cleansing action.
  • Helps keep teeth clean and breath fresh, even on days when brushing isn‚Äôt possible.
  • Persistent action. Chlorhexidine is released into the oral cavity during chewing and may be released for up to 24 hours, providing sustained antimicrobial action.
  • Appealing flavor. Dog owners may give as a daily chew.
  • Available in petite, medium, large, and extra-large sizes. All sizes available in 30-count bags.
C.E.T. Veggiedent

C.E.T. Veggiedent

C.E.T. Veggiedent:

Vegetable-based chews that work with a dog’s chewing action to freshen breath, reduce plaque, and decrease tartar formation.

  • Cleans teeth and freshens breath when chewed once a day by dogs.
  • Independent study demonstrated significant plaque and tartar control in dogs fed 1 C.E.T.¬ģ VEGGIEDENT¬ģ Chew per day.1
  • Patent-pending easy-to-hold Z-shape design and tough, chewy consistency.
  • Highly palatable vegetable-based chews for dogs. No animal-origin ingredients.
  • Available in 2 sizes; 4-inch strips for small dogs and 6-inch strips for medium and large dogs. Packaged 30 chews per bag.
Purina Dental Chews

Purina Dental Chews

Purina also makes their version of a dental chew to help reduce tarter buildup.

Besides chews there are water additives and mouth sprays or gels that your pet will benefit from using. Brushing daily is always the best method of keeping the tarter at bay, if you can’t brush daily then giving them chews and using the other products when you can will help reduce the tarter buildup. If your animal has sever dental disease they can be put on a prescription dental diet made by Hill’s¬†called t/d. They make a feline and canine formula:Oral HealthDental care for your pet may be more important than you think. The accumulation of bacteria laden plaque above the gumline can lead to long term oral health issues. Recent studies have demonstrated there is an association between oral health issues and systemic general health issues affecting the kidney, heart and metabolic systems.At Hill’s, nutritionists and veterinarians have developed clinical nutrition especially formulated to keep your dog’s teeth clean and help control the oral bacteria found in plaque.Video of Periodontal Disease in Dogs

Stay tuned for dental cleanings at the vet.

Nellie’s Annual Veterinary Visit

Nellie’s annual veterinary visit is each¬†January. ¬†At this time she will get a full physical exam from nose to tail. This will include an eye exam, ear exam, teeth exam, check the lymph nodes, listen to heart and lung sounds, palpate abdomen, feel pauses in back legs, check skin, check fur, check rectum and vagina. The Veterinarian will then address any problems found and will address any questions the owner may have. If found healthy vaccinations are given at this time as well as blood draw for the yearly heartworm check and chemistry panel/cbc to check internal organ functions.

Outline of Nellie’s exam:

Nellie's weight check.

Nellie’s weight check.

Nellie weighed in before her examination. She weighed 73#. She is 10# over weight. I blame this on too many treats and not enough exercise. She is on Purina OM (obesity management) dog food but she still finds scrapes out in the fields to eat. Nellie is 6-7 on the body chart below. Click on body chart link to see  how your pet compares.

body chart

Today I will get an exam and some vaccinations.

Today I will get an exam and some vaccinations.

Today Nellie got vaccinated for Lyme disease, Bordetella (kennel cough) and DHLPP (distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parainfluenza and parvo). She is current on Rabies so she doesn’t need that this year.

Lyme: Vaccination is by far the most effective way to protect your dog against Lyme disease. Recombiteck(TM) Lyme caccine uses the same advance technology as the human Lume disease vaccine. It works by blocking transmission – from tick to dog – of the spirochete that causes the disease. Recombitek Lyme is now available only from veterinarians. Per Merial brochure. Lyme is a yearly vaccine.

Bordetella: Your dog can have the kennel without the cough. Prevention is the key to kennel cough. If at any time in the next year your dog will be exposed to possibly infected dogs or group situations like those in dog parks, grooming facilities or even veterinary clinics, it’s wise to vaccinate for B. bronchiseptica and canine parainfluenza. Boarding kennels often require a kennel cough vaccination. Per Merial brochure. Bordetella is a yearly vaccine.

DHLPP:¬†¬†(distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parainfluenza and parvo) This combination vaccine is a yearly vaccination until the veterinarian feels your pet as built up enough immunity to spread the DHPP vaccine out over either 2 or 3 years. The Lepto portion of this vaccine is still concidered a yearly vaccination. It will only hold it’s immunity in the dog for one year so it needs to be re¬†booster¬†each year. This year Nellie’s DHPP vaccine is good for 3 years now.

2011 AAHA canine vaccine guidelines

The ear exam.

The ear exam.

Using a otoscope Dr. Hartay is able to look down deep in Nellie’s ear to see if she might have an ear infection. She does not have an infection and very clean ears. I don’t think I have ever treated Nellie for an ear infection in her 8 years of life.

The eye exam.

The eye exam.

Using a opthamascope Dr. Hartay looks for any changes in Nellie’s eyes. Her eyes were clear and no changes. As they get older they have some changes that if they were human they may need reading glasses but they don’t read so it doesn’t bother them. They can also¬†develop cataracts but she doesn’t have any.

Nellie giving her mean face just after the teeth exam.

Nellie giving her mean face just after the teeth exam.

Nellie’s teeth were clean. She had a dental last year when she was spayed and they are still tarter free this year. If she would have tarter on her teeth she would need a dental cleaning. Not this year and hopefully not next if I keep up on the brushing.

Feeling The lymph nodes.

Feeling The lymph nodes.

Nellie has lymph nodes in her neck area, in front of her shoulders and by her thighs. She has many more lymph nodes but these sites are the ones that can be palpated during an exam for any abnormalities.

The ascult of her heart and lungs.

The ascult of her heart and lungs.

Dr. Hartay is asculting Nellie’s heart and lungs. She is listing for any murmers and making sure her lungs sound fine. Nellie is sounding normal.

The abdominal palpation and pulse check.

The abdominal palpation and pulse check.

Nellie had her abdomen palpated for detectable tumors. She then had her pulse checked by feeling the femoral artery in the inside of her back legs. No tumors felt and pulse was normal.

Vaccination time.

Vaccination time.

Vaccines can be given in several spots. They are spread out so if there is a reaction at the vaccination site the veterinarian will know what vaccine caused the problem. The vaccine is administered just under the skin.

Another vaccination.

Another vaccination.

Blood draw time.

Blood draw time.

The fur is wet down with alcohol before the blood draw. This helps make the vein pop out better and adds a bit of sterility to the site. There are different blood tubes for different tests. This year Nellie is having her annual heartworm test, a CBC (complete blood count) and chemistry panel with T4.