December is Pet First Aid Month

Pet First AidI’ve had my share of cats and dogs, and while I definitely have a strong relationship with my vet, I like to try to do as much of my pet care as I can at home. It’s not just about the money, because, of course, Embrace is chipping in on the vet bills. It’s really about keeping the stress on my pet to a minimum. If I can apply pressure with a little gauze and an ace bandage in my living room, it spares Kayden the trauma of a ride to urgent care and unnerving wait in the vet’s office. And he can still get a cookie from me when it’s all over, just as he would get from the person in scrubs.

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Podcast: Pet Nutrition Fact and Fiction

In a world full of fad diets and million dollar advertising campaigns, how are you supposed to sift through the filler to find the right food for your pet?

This month, Dr. Patrick Mahaney and Laura Bennett dive into the world of pet nutrition and help you separate fact from fiction when it comes to what to feed your pet. Here's what they'll cover:

  • Do the foods that tout added nutrients for things like joint health really help my dog?
  • What's the difference when a food is specially for seniors or puppies? Is it really valuable to switch foods as your pet ages?
  • What are the best budget-conscious options for dogs with food allergies?
  • If a dog will only eat once a day, is that a problem? Should he be eating more, smaller meals?
  • Do cats really need wet food?
  • What can you do to help an obese cat lose weight?

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Pet Dangers Lurking Among Holiday Cheer?

Holiday Pet DangersSometimes, working in the pet insurance industry, I feel a bit like Debbie Downer. That person who shows up to the dinner party and tells you all about how the poinsettia plant your grandma gave you could be a risk to your cat, even if you don’t have a cat. (Okay, I don’t actually say that, but I might see one and think it and make sure you don’t have a cat.) Because, well, I know a bit too much about the everyday dangers that could hurt a pet. And, at no time of the year is it more risky than the holidays. Yep, here’s a few more holiday risks from my Debbie Downer list (queue whomp-whomp music here):

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Help your Pet be Happy, Starting with Healthy Weight

Obesity is the number one problem vets see in practice….bar none. It causes so many problems in our pets and can lead to a significant decrease in quality of life. It has been estimated that a lean dog can live 30% longer than his overweight counterpart, with up to 30% less orthopedic issues. But it’s not our pets’ fault if they gain a few extra pounds, it’s ours. With the immense marketing of pet foods in the US, the pet parent can feel pressured to buy foods they know nothing about. Pet food manufacturers and employees in pet stores will tell you anything to sell you the food du jour. There is so much misinformation and pseudo-science about pet food out there. Buyer beware when you are purchasing your next bag of dog or cat food.

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Collar Safety Awareness Week Kick-Off

Collar Safety Awareness WeekWe were all shocked and dismayed when one of our policyholders called to tell us the awful story of her dog’s accidental death. It seems her two small dogs had been alone in the home mid-day and in the course of playing or cuddles their collars became snared together. Of course, the dogs couldn’t unhook themselves, and the situation only caused them to become frantic, until ultimately, one was strangled to death. When the pet parent returned home, the deceased dog was still hooked to his companion.

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