Going to the Vet

Dr. Riggs

Guest Blogger Dr. Rex Riggs examining Embrace Sara's dog, Henry.

When I was 19 and found my dog Lyger, I was a total newbie when it came to taking my dog to the vet. He ran the show, I had no idea what the staff was talking about, and had zero idea what to expect in his first year. Flash forward 11 years and I had two senior dogs and could have been on a frequent flyer program with my local practice. I joked, half in earnest, that I didn’t have Munchausen by proxy, but it was true, my dogs had developed into special needs pets and their care required me to step up my game and work as a team with their orthopedic specialists and physical therapists.

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Celebrity Pets--what’s in a name?

Ever wonder if your pet might need her own agent? We polled our Facebook followers and it turns out some of you have gifted your pets with great names from your favorite books, movies and musicians. Let’s take a look at some of the funniest pets named after people:


Embracer Sara’s Rottweiler, Cosmo Kramer, is named after the ultimate hipster doofus. I wonder if he can be trained to say “these pretzels are making me thirsty…”

And Embracer Ericka’s little girls helped to name their best buddy after Martha of PBS fame. Martha

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Guest Post: Popular Culture and the Rise of Designer Dogs

Kim KardashianPop culture has been defined as “a collection of thoughts, ideas, attitudes, perspectives, images (you name it) preferred by the mainstream population.” It seems we all want to be like someone else. An actor, an athlete, a singer, or God forbid, the Kardashians. Why? I don’t know. I have never understood why people want fame. You lose control of your life. You can no longer be a normal person, doing normal things, but I digress. Pop culture has definitely impacted veterinary medicine also, affecting what are sometime called “designer dogs” and even pet food.

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Podcast: Pets and Popular Culture

Laura NativoThis month’s podcast brings you a little something extra. As we’re talking about Pets and Pop Culture, we thought we’d bring in dog trainer and pet lifestyle expert Laura Nativo. We’re veering away from our usual Q&A format and geeking out a bit about pets in Hollywood. Dr. Patrick Mahaney dishes about some of his A-list celebrity clients (you’ll have to listen to find out who!) and Laura shares some behind the scenes stories, and how she turned them into trainable moments. We’ll learn about the life of a celebrity pet on set and more. Tune in.

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Pets and Popular Culture

Hairball Lady GagaRemember hairball Lady Gaga? Yes, this was a thing. A real thing. Actually, it was Laura’s contribution to National Hairball Awareness Day in 2012. Because, while we’re truly passionate about pets, pop culture is definitely one of our guilty pleasures. I mean, we need some escape from the excitement of actuarial charts and insurance filings once and a while, right?

Hairball humor aside, pets certainly infiltrate our mainstream consciousness, from our newsfeeds to our favorite children’s movies. Whether you were raised on Petey from the Little Rascals, followed the adventures of Checkers Nixon in the nightly news report or follow Grumpy Cat (or Boo or Maru or...you get the idea), animals are part of our media diet and play a role in bringing many people joy and entertainment. That’s why this month we’re sharing a new featured topic, Pets and Popular Culture.

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