Discover How To Identify This Common Infection In Your Dog!

Discover How To Identify This Common Infection In Your Dog!

Yeast infections are very common in pets – both dogs and cats. This type of fungal infection is created by an overgrowth of Malassezia species of yeast, which is always present on your dog’s body in their skin, ears and mucocutaneous areas. Dogs living in hot, humid environments tend to get more infections because the weather is prime condition for yeast to grow. When it starts to reproduce rapidly, it can spread to areas on the dog that it does not usually inhabit.

Not only do some dogs seem to get them quite easily, once they have it, it can be a long process to clear it up. One of the most important parts about treatment is early identification – the earlier you spot an infection the better.

Yeast Infections Can Be Almost Anywhere!

Dogs can get yeast infections practically anywhere! Common places, however, are the outer and inner ear (especially floppy breeds such as the Lab or Golden Retriever) and the paws.

How To Spot An Infection

There are several signs of yeast infections that you should know about. As mentioned, the sooner you detect one, the easier it will be to get rid of. Remember, yeast reproduces rapidly and spreads, so what starts out as a yeast infection in one spot can quickly become multiple infections if you don’t catch it quickly.

Here are the signs to look for:

* Incessant itching. Don’t dismiss this as dry skin or fleas – yeast infections causes frantic, almost non-stop itchiness. Your dog will drive you crazy with it and it’s because the infection is driving him crazy.

* Incessant licking. Like the scratching, your dog won’t want to stop licking the spot that is the source of the infection. (The moisture from the licking often makes it worse.)

* Skin irritation/inflammation. The skin will be pinker than normal. The more your dog licks, the redder it will become as well. Check in and around the ears, between the paw pads and toes, nasal area, armpits, neck and anal area for redness and irritated skin.

* Hair loss

* Greasy coat

* Rancid smell from skin

As it gets worse, you may find sores, sticky discharge, and even yellowish green, smelly discharge.

What Could Be Causing the Yeast Overgrowth?

There can be a combination of things that can cause this awful plague on your dog and you may be surprised to learn that his food can be one of them! If your dog is itching the first thing you want to do is change to a high quality food like Stay Loyal. Itchy yeasty dogs often have food allergies or sensitivities that are caused by low-quality food ingredients like grains, preservatives, plant source fats and proteins. All these can contribute to yeast outbreaks. Other causes can be:

* Fleas and other skin parasites

* Inhalant/contact allergies

* Hypothyrodism, Cushing’s Disease, or other hormonal disorders that affect the immune system

* Cancer

* Chemotherapy, steroids, and antibiotics

Also, dogs with skin folds, such as the English Bulldog, are more prone to them because moisture and foreign objects such as food crumbs get into the folds and then an infection develops.

Yeast infections in the ear are a whole another ball of wax. They can be caused by trapped water, debris, pollens, mold, dust, feathers, cigarette smoke, cleaning products and of course, your dog’s food. It can also be caused by more serious problems including a ruptured eardrum, a tumor in the ear canal, or a trapped object.

My Dog Has An Infection – Now What?

Obviously, if it’s really bad, you are going to have to take your dog to the vet. Definitely take them if you think the ear infection might be due to the above mentioned blockage or tumor, or a serious medical condition such as cancer or Cushing’s. Your vet can prescribe medicines to help ease your dog’s suffering while the infection is battled. The more they lick and itch, the worse it will get, so you need to stop your dog from bothering the infected site.

Here’s my suggested Action Plan.

1. Go to vet and get a diagnosis. (Most vets will rule out fleas and mites for you but that’s about it. If your vet does think its yeast then avoid their medications unless your dog is doing damage to the affected area. Antibiotics and Steroids are not beneficial to long term healing of yeast infection. If you have already been to the vet without good results skip this step.)

2. Change food to Stay Loyal Original and Raw Lamb Meaty Bones Only! (you will receive instructions on how to feed when you purchase.) Feeding anything else could cause the yeast to grow. (Strictly NO Beef, Roo or products with Beef or Roo. Strictly no Store-bought treats dental sticks etc…)

3. Zinc supplementation can be given if the yeast is bad or your dog is doing a lot of foot chewing and licking. Also breeds like a GSD’s are susceptible to zinc deficiencies. In this case, you may need to give zinc for the rest of the dog’s life. Zinc can be dosed at up to 10mg per kg of dog per day. So, a 40kg dog will get up to 400mg of zinc per day. (I get my zinc from the supermarket.)

4. Wash with Malaseb wash. If your dog gets relief from a bath in Malaseb. Then it’s a good indication that it most likely has a yeast infection. And a good idea to wash with Malaseb as much as recommended on the instructions.

Don’t Expect Miracles!

Every dog is different and at different stages of yeast infection. Some dogs may find relief in days or weeks and other dogs it may take months. When following the above tips correctly, you should see slight improvements within a month and control of yeast within 3 months. Yeast overgrowth can be very hard to get rid of and can also come back in summer months so be aware of it and avoid doing anything you know flares it up, like feeding beef or store bought treats. It also takes common sense, if it isn’t working get more advice or reassess what you are doing. The above tips will work for most dogs with yeast overgrowth. However, in special cases it may not work so please be aware of this.

Are You Ready For A Dog?

Are You Ready For A Dog?

Whether you are thinking about adopting a rescue or getting a puppy, there are many things to consider besides breed, color, and gender. The decision to get a dog should never be a snap one, after all, most dog breeds live between 12 and 20 years – that’s a long-term commitment. Here are some things to ask yourself before adding a lifelong friend to your home.

Why Do You Want A Dog?

Are you getting a dog just so your children will stop nagging you? If so, chances are that that dog won’t be at your house for long. If the whole family is not on board, wait. It’s better for you and the dog. Or maybe you want a dog for other reasons. Thinking about these things can help you choose the right dog for your household, which will help insure he sticks around.

Do You Have The Money?

It costs a lot of money to have a dog. Are you adopting because you can’t afford a purebred puppy? Well, that adopted dog is still going to add up to a lot of money between supplies, vet bills, registration, training classes, etc. According to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, the first year alone can add up to anywhere between $3,000 and $6,000 – not including unforeseen health problems! They estimate that lifetime expenses are around $25,000. And again, that’s not including things like emergency surgeries or long-term illness such as cancer.

Do You Have The Time?

Are you gone long hours and travel all the time? Do your friends think you’ve moved away? If so, you may not have time for a dog. They need attention every day, including, training, exercise, grooming, feeding and cleaning up after them.

Who Will Be Taking Care Of The Dog?

So maybe you are thinking you don’t have the time, but the kids can take care of the dog. THINK AGAIN. Your kids may swear up and down that they will take care of the dog, but we all know at the end of the day it will be you! Even if your kid’s do pitch in, you are still going to have to do things like take the dog to the vet, make sure your kids are taking care of the dog properly, etc. If you don’t want to do it, don’t get a dog.

What Will The Dog Do During The Day?

If all the adults in the house work, what will the dog be doing? Is your house dog-proof? Do you have a yard they will be in – is it dog-proof? Some breeds do not do well alone, which is something to consider when you are deciding on what type of breed to get – no one wants to deal with separation anxiety. If you are so busy you are rarely home, you may want to skip a dog and get a cat. They are much easier to leave home alone.

Are You Willing To Make Sacrifices?

Sometimes, your dog’s needs might come at an inopportune time. Are you willing to skip the family trip because the money needs to be used for your dog’s surgery? Are you willing to stay home from a vacation because you couldn’t find a pet sitter? Or maybe your dog gets sick at the last second and the

choice is to leave it at home sick or miss out on the concert you bought nonrefundable tickets for and go to the vet. It happens. Dogs are dependent on us and sometimes you need to make sacrifices for their wellbeing. If you aren’t ready for that, don’t get a dog.

Are You Prepared To Say Goodbye?

This might seem like a strange question, but for some people, this is it where it stops. They just can’t bear the thought of having to say goodbye to the dog who has become their best friend. If you aren’t able to cope with the fact that your best friend will leave this Earth before you, you may want to get a pet parrot or tortoise – these guys just might outlive you.

Here’s What to Do if You are Unsure About Getting a Dog!

Think you might be ready but are unsure? Get your dog fix by volunteering at a shelter, hanging out with friends’ dogs, or working at a dog boarding facility. Try fostering first. It allows you to “try out” owning a dog while helping homeless ones at the same time.

Having a dog is a wonderful thing. They add to our lives in ways only a dog can. But, do the dogs of this world a favor and only get one when you know you are 100% ready.

Effects Of Alcohol On Dogs And How To Avoid Ingestion

Effects Of Alcohol On Dogs And How To Avoid Ingestion

We all know your dog shouldn’t join us at the bar on Friday nights to hit back a few beers. But just how bad is alcohol for dogs and why? The Pet Poison Helpline lists alcohol poisoning as “generally mild to severe.” It’s not something you want to take a chance with, as it can be deadly.

Alcohol Poisoning Can Lead To Respiratory Failure!!

It’s important to remember that most dogs weigh much less than adult humans, so the amount of alcohol needed to cause severe issues to their system is much less than it is for us. This means small amounts of hard liquor can kill a small dog. The effects of alcohol poisoning on a dog are similar to a human. It effects the central nervous system. Symptoms include:

* Lowered breathing and heart rate

* Temperature drop

* Not being able to walk right and/or stand

* Vomiting

* Urination or defecting involuntarily

* Unresponsiveness/coma

* Behavioral changes (such as from depression to excitement)

* Flatulence

If their blood chemistry is altered –alcohol poisoning – they will develop a condition called metabolic acidosis (acidic blood). Death follows soon after, usually due to cardiac arrest.

It’s Not Just Alcoholic Drinks You Need To Be Wary Of…

You may think, fine, I just will keep by beer and wine out of my dog’s reach and we will be good. But there are lots of household products that contain alcohol (mouthwash to name one) that you need to keep your dog out of. The scariest thing, however, is something you probably never would have thought of…

ACTIVATED YEAST

Unbaked dough left rising is very dangerous to any dog. It smells delicious and is very enticing, making the threat of ingestion even higher. If your dog does ingest it, he will fight a lost battle between two evils. First, the rising dough will continue to expand in your dog’s warm, moist stomach. This will cause bloat (which is often deadly on its own) and can even cause gastric-dilatation volvulus (GDV), also known as a “twisted stomach.” Second, the fermented yeast will release carbon dioxide and alcohol. The alcohol will quickly be absorbed into your dog’s bloodstream resulting in alcohol poisoning. Two deadly issues are now happening simultaneously within your dog’s body.

Rotting or Fermenting Fruit.

If you have fruit trees in the back yard or on your walks you may be surprised that when the fruit falls on the ground and begins to rot, it starts to ferment and create alcohol. Pretty much the same way wine is made. So, if you have fruit trees and your dog is hanging out down the back more than usual, suspect they are getting into some alcoholic fruit. This could be dangerous for small dogs because they don’t need much alcohol to reach dangerous levels.

YOUR DOG’S DENTAL PRODUCTS COULD BE VERY DANGEROUS!

Here’s something shocking – some dog dental care products have 25% or more “straight grain alcohol” – which is the same as a 50-proof drink. This can cause liver and kidney damage as well as damage to the nervous system. So, check your dog’s dental products.

How To Avoid Ingestion

So how do you avoid accidently giving your dog alcohol?? By being diligent and shopping smart.

First, be sure you keep anything that contains alcohol – including personal care products such as mouthwash and perfume, cooking sprays, cough syrups, rubbing alcohol, etc. – out of reach of your dog. If you have a dog that gets into cupboards, you can put them in high cabinets, secure low cabinets with baby locks, shut doors to rooms where they are kept, or crate your dog when you are not home to keep an eye on them.

Second, read the labels of anything you are going to give your dog, especially if it’s human food. You may be surprised what contains alcohol. If you see any type of alcohol in the list, don’t give it to your dog.

Third, give your dog meaty bones to clean his teeth rather than dental chews that contain alcohol. (They cost less too!)

Fourth, when cooking, don’t leave your yeast-filled dough rising anywhere your dog might be able to get it. It could kill him.

What To Do If Your Dog Is Vomiting Or Regurgitating!

What To Do If Your Dog Is Vomiting Or Regurgitating!

For humans, vomiting means something is up with the body. We are sick, we ate something bad, we drank too much, we’re pregnant, etc. It’s a pretty safe to say that if you are throwing up, something’s wrong and it warrants a doctor’s visit. But with dogs, rushing to the veterinary office every time he pukes up a blade of grass will cost you a lot of money and might just get you labeled as one of those “crazy pet parents.” Dogs do vomit and regurgitate, but not for the same reasons we do. And sometimes it does warrant a vet visit, but not every time. Learning the difference can save you some time and money.

You should know the difference between regurgitation versus vomiting

Regurgitation happens when undigested food or fluid moves back up the esophagus and out the dog’s mouth. You will not see any chest heaving with regurgitation, as the material has not made it into the dog’s stomach yet and your dog is not nauseous. It’s a common behavior that dogs do for many reasons. Some of the reasons your dog may regurgitate something are:

* Ate or drank too fast

* Didn’t chew their food up enough (so the pieces are too big to go down), in this case your dog will most likely immediately eat what they regurgitated

* They aren’t sure if what they just ate was safe (survival instinct)

These most likely do not warrant a visit to the vet’s. (Think about how many times your dog regurgitates grass!).

Vomiting happens when your dog’s stomach is upset. There will be heaving and nausea involved and the material that comes up may be partially digested. They may throw up bile as well. Vomiting is usually more serious than regurgitation.

What if my dog is vomiting bile only?

As mentioned above, your dog may throw up bile along with whatever else they ate. But what about dogs that just throw up bile? Bile is created in your dog’s liver, stored in their gallbladder and then released into the small intestine. If your dog’s stomach is empty, that bile can cause it to be upset and they will vomit. If your dog does this, feeding him a few pieces of his kibble can help. I know a dog that throws up bile if his owner doesn’t feed him within a half hour of his normal breakfast time – his stomach is just sensitive.

So when do I go to the vet?

For the vast majority of cases, regurgitating is a normal dog thing and is perfectly safe. However, if you think your dog regurgitated something that was dangerous and you think they may have eaten some of it early, you may need to take them to a vet. Also, if your dog regurgitates frequently, say at almost every meal, it can be a sign of a genetic condition. Great Danes, German Shepherds, Irish Setters, Labrador Retrievers, Newfoundland, Chinese Shar-Pei, Miniature Schnauzer and the Wire Fox Terrier are pre-disposed to the medical disorder of regurgitation and it can be associated with other medical issues, including cancer, so it definitely warrants a vet visit.

There are definitely times when you should take your dog to the vet when you see vomiting. First, check what your dog threw up. If it doesn’t look like something edible (like part of a toy) or there is blood in the vomit, they should see a vet. Put the vomit in a plastic bag and take it to the vet – it can help them diagnose the problem.

Even if the vomit looks fine, check for other signs that your dog is unhealthy:

* Lethargy

* Weight loss

* Loss of balance

* Loss of appetite

If your dog is acting “off” in any way or has other symptoms, it’s probably a good idea to go to the vet then as well.

Does Your Dogs Store Bought Food Contain this Toxic Ingredient?

Does Your Dogs Store Bought Food Contain this Toxic Ingredient?

You probably answered an immediate “no” to this question, possibly with laughter and scoffing in your voice – who would do that?? But, if you are feeding low-quality food or treats, chances are, you are feeding your dog a compound used to make antifreeze, propylene glycol. Well, if it’s in my dog’s food, it must be safe right?

Let’s talk about what it is first, before we answer that question

Propylene glycol is a synthetic substance that is used in all sort of things – from antifreeze to food. It has many other names including: 1,2-dihydroxypropane, 1,2-propanediol, methyl glycol, and trimethyl glycol. It is a petroleum-based product made of two alcohol groups. It is odorless, but has a faintly sweet taste, which is why animals like it. The Agency of Toxic Substance & Disease Registry explains that it is a liquid substance that absorbs water. It is used for a variety of things:

* To make polyester compounds.

* As a base of deicing solutions (which, by the way, are poisonous to pets!)

* Used by the chemical, food and pharmaceutical industries as an antifreeze when “leakage might lead to contact with food.”

* To Absorb water and maintain moisture in medicines and cosmetics.

* As a solvent for paint and plastic industries.

* To create artificial smoke or fog.

For food, it’s used to absorb water, maintain moisture, and as a solvent for food colors and flavors.

Sounds like something that should be ingested, doesn’t it?

Yet, the American Food & Drug Administration (FDA) classifies it as “generally safe” for consumption…for people as well as dogs. HOWEVER IT IS NOT DEEMED SAFE FOR CATS!

Interesting, yes?

Blue Buffalo issued a recall a few years ago on one of their cat foods because propylene glycol was found in them. In cats, propylene glycol is known to cause Heinz Body formation in the red blood cells. It reduces the red blood cells survival time, renders red blood cells more susceptible to oxidative damage and has other adverse effects in cats.

In dog food, propylene glycol is used to absorb water, but also as a sweetener because it’s cheap and readily available. Dogs love sweet – they have a similar palate to ours – and so that is why many brands use some type of sweetener, such as sugar, sucrose or propylene glycol, in their foods. It makes the food more palatable, masking the lower quality ingredients they use.

So it must be safe for dogs then, right?

There are a few problems with that assumption and a lot has to do with verbiage. The FDA says it’s generally safe…in low concentrations. Fine, you may eat junk food once in a while that contains propylene glycol and it probably won’t affect you. But your dog eats the same food every day. This means your dog is getting that synthetic, un-natural substance used in many unsafe products, every day.

The bottom line is – natural is best when it comes to your dog’s food. That’s why you won’t find propylene glycol in any Stay Loyal line. The health, safety, and wellbeing of your best friend is our top priority.