Marley and Me blog

GroganblogOk, now I feel really behind the times. There's a Marley and Me blog by John Grogan and it's been going since July 2005 and I only just found it. How could I have missed it?

It just goes to show that it's hard to find the diamonds in the rough in the blogosphere.

All you potential pet parents, definitely read this book. Not only is it very entertaining, it should make you think about the responsibility you are taking on when you bring a dog into the house. Of course, not all dogs are like Marley...

Related post: Great book: Marley and Me

Lily has a sore eye

I noticed Lily slightly closed her right eye when we first got her but nothing developed. She did sneeze for a few days but that went away by the end of her 14-day quarantine and so I figured she'd be fine to let out with Barnes.

Now, a month or so later, she has an eye infection in both eyes and started sneezing again. She seems perfectly fine apart from the head cold and eye issues as she's been chasing bugs all round the back yard and pouncing on my computer wires - never a dull moment around Lily.

So, I took her to the vet yesterday and got some antibacterial ointment. The costs were as follows (July 2006 Cleveland Ohio):

Office Visit Follow Up                              27.50

Flourescein Stain                                    11.00

Neobacimyx Opth. Oint #36925                16.05

Total                                                       54.55

I don't have pet insurance for Lily yet but will get it when this has cleared up.

Barnes is also sneezing too but seems fine. I'll be keeping a close eye on him as well. I suppose this is what you can expect from bringing in a cat that's been in close quarters with a hundred or so close furry friends.

New pet insurance company in the US?

There was an announcement earlier this week that Bethel Holdings, Inc. changed its name to Direct Pet Health Holdings, Inc., which

"is an innovative, fully funded, and financially stable new corporation that offer innovative pet health insurance products and services at discounted prices to consumers, corporations, and organizations."

Assuming they are selling, or are planning to sell, pet insurance, this is a new pet health insurance company in the US. I haven't found anything else out about them and what they are offering yet but I'll let you know when I do.

New York Times - Cat and Dog Obesity

There was an interesting article about pet obesity in the NYT on July 18, 2006: Wonder Where That Fat Cat Learned to Eat? by Jane E. Brody (free subscription to read the article for the first few weeks).

“Obesity is considered one of the most common nutritional problems in cats and dogs,” two scientists from the University of California, Davis, reported last year at the Waltham International Nutritional Sciences Symposium in Washington. “Studies in Western Europe and the United States have indicated that more than 24 percent of dogs and about 25 percent of domestic cats are obese,” the veterinarians, Jon J. Ramsey and Kevork Hagopian, noted. The findings were published this month in The Journal of Nutrition.

Not surprisingly, one study found a strong correlation between excess weight in pet owners and in their pets. Still, there are many normal-weight pet owners with dogs or cats that are dangerously overweight.

This all sounds so depressingly familiar doesn't it - so human.

The author goes on to talk about the effects of obesity such as:

  • orthopedic problems e.g. hip dysplasia and other joint disorders,
  • metabolic disorders e.g. insulin resistance and high cholesterol levels,
  • hormonal disorders e.g. thyroid problems and diabetes,
  • respiratory disorders e.g. tracheal collapse and sleep apnea,
  • urogenital problems e.g. kidney stones and incontinence,
  • cancers e.g. mammary and bladder cancer, and
  • other health problems such as exercise intolerance, heat intolerance and heat stroke, decreased immune function, hypertension, shortness of breath, and decreased lifespan.

This is an interesting list if you compare it to VPI's top 10 pet insurance claims for 2005. Diabetes in cats and osteoarthritis and hypothyroidism in dogs have just popped into VPI's claim list for the first time.

So not only age brings on these conditions, but weight too. While we can't stop our pets from aging, we certainly can do something about their weight.

Related Posts:
Treating tracheal collapse in dogs - Dr Chick Weisse
Looking for a veterinary surgeon in the US or Canada?
Repairing a tracheal collapse in dogs
Collapsing Trachea in a dog
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Big vet bills and no pet insurance?
Non-invasive veterinary surgery

Thanks for the smile VPI

Vpi_ad_in_healthy_pet Sorry VPI but I just had to post this very amusing misprint - please just look at it as "any PR is good PR".

In the latest HealthyPet magazine (Summer 2006 edition), the phone number was misprinted in VPI's advertisement.

Of all the misprints it could be, you can guess what kind of phone number was actually printed instead of the correct one (hint: "Hey sexy guy...")

I'm not sure what the number was supposed to be but just for the record, VPI's number is 1-800-872-7387. As of May 15, the misprint was corrected so those old issues are now collectors' items.

Perhaps this is a brilliant marketing move on VPI's part - after all, I am talking about them, aren't I? Either that or someone in the marketing department had a bit of photoshop fun on their last day of work.

Hat tip to Brett J for the smile and to Tiffany at Health Pets magazine for the confirmation - after all, it could have been a really fun trick to play on me :)

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