Severe Weather Pet Safety: Are You Prepared?

severe weatherAustin residents are no strangers to severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. You may have an idea of what to do in the event of severe weather, but have you considered pet safety?

Severe weather pet safety is an important part of responsible pet ownership. By planning ahead for our pets, we can help to reduce their anxiety and keep them from harm.

Prepare Your Shelter

Having a safe place to go in the event of a tornado is crucial for the safety of everyone in your home. Once you have identified your tornado-proof room or cellar, make sure it is animal friendly by removing dangerous items, such as tools or toxic products, that may be stored there.

Stock your tornado shelter with emergency pet supplies, including extra food, water, any medications your pet is taking, litter box and litter or puppy pads, a leash or carrier, and veterinary records. Practice getting your pet into the tornado-safe area quickly (this includes knowing your pet’s favorite hiding spots).

Evacuation Concerns

Severe weather may damage your home or surrounding area to the point where evacuation is necessary. Take the following precautions to keep your pet safe in the event of an evacuation:

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Protecting Your Pet from Springtime Pet Toxins

Although we are fortunate to enjoy mild winters here in Round Rock, spring nevertheless brings out the urge to spruce up our lawns and gardens. Many of us consider our yards an extension of our homes, and appreciate our time spent enjoying nature and great weather with our families and pets.

Because many common ornamental plants and lawn care products are pet toxins, caution must be used to ensure that your pet will stay safe as you exercise your green thumb this spring. Your team at Heart of Texas is happy to offer you our top tips for pet safe gardening and lawn care!

Pet Safe Landscaping

Your neighbor’s hyacinths and tulips look beautiful this time of year, but did you know that both plants are toxic to pets if ingested?

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posted in:  Pet Safety  |  Pet Toxins  |  Seasonal Pet Care

What’s the Hype About Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for Pets?

With all the developments in modern medicine, who would have guessed that the key to one of the most cutting-edge therapies is in the air? Hyperbaric oxygen therapy for pets is one of the latest ways that Heart of Texas Veterinary Specialty Center is bringing the best of veterinary medicine to our pet patients.

Oxygen Therapy

The medical field has recognized the benefits of oxygen for many centuries, but it has taken awhile for the uses of this ubiquitous gas to be recognized.

During a hyperbaric oxygen treatment, the patient is placed inside of a pressurized chamber containing pure oxygen. Room air is typically only around 21% oxygen. Treatment times vary greatly depending on the goal of treatment. In most cases, multiple sessions are needed to maximize effect.

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The Wonderful Ways Pets Show Us Love

As Love Your Pet Day approaches, we think about those furry beings who matter tremendously in our lives. We certainly love them for many reasons including their companionship and devotion. And for your pet, you’re likely numero uno on their “I love you, I love you, and by the way, you rock!” list. We know they love us, but exactly how do our pets show us their love?

Five Important Ways Pets Show Us Love

As pet guardians, we may sense their unconditional love simply by how enthusiastic they are every time we come home. You probably get plenty of kisses or purrs each time you take a moment to snuggle and cuddle your furry pal.

Although the list of meaningful ways pets express their love is inexhaustible, we have narrowed down our top five faves. Continue…

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posted in:  You & Your Pet

I Heart You: Show Love With Proactive Pet Safety

When you share your life with animals, every day is full of love and happiness. But when Valentine’s Day rears its flowery, chocolate-scented head, an otherwise firm grip on pet safety can easily fly out the window.

This big-hearted holiday is a wonderful opportunity to show your nearest and dearest how much you care, but it also ranks toward the top for pet poisoning risks. With our tried and true tips, your pet will (safely) enjoy the extra doses of snuggles and kisses galore!

Presenting: V-Day Disasters!

Unfortunately, the same items that make Valentine’s Day special for us have the potential to place your pet in danger. In fact, the Pet Poison Helpline and emergency clinics (like our own 24-hour facility) repeatedly prepare for one of the busiest days of the year. Not surprisingly, the most common patients turn out to be curious (or hungry) family dogs. Continue…

A Healthy and Happy Year: New Year’s Resolutions for Pets

First of all, allow us to take this opportunity to wish you and your family a wonderful 2017!

It’s that time again, the start of a new year and the chance to clean up bad habits and begin a new routine. Very few of us can claim that there aren’t any areas of our lives that couldn’t use a little adjustment, and the same can probably be said for our pets.

Your team at Heart of Texas is committed to the health and well-being of your furry family members, which is why we’ve come up with a list of our favorite New Year’s resolutions for pets.

Battle the Bulge with a Daily Walk

Humans aren’t the only species battling the obesity epidemic. Over half of pet dogs and cats in the United States are overweight, and the numbers are growing. Overweight pets are at risk for many of the same debilitating conditions as humans, including high blood pressure, diabetes, and joint problems.

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Celebrating the Holidays with Your Pet (Without All the Stress)

I love Christmas too!While it may not be possible every year, the idea of a low-key holiday with your pet sounds pretty good. With their hustle and bustle, commitments, and (oh yes) heated family debates over politics, the holidays can be stressful for both us and our pets.

Throw in all the party hosting and traveling that occurs, and the season can be downright scary for four-legged friends. So what’s a frazzled pet parent to do? How about putting some new traditions into practice!

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Thanksgiving Blues: Preventing Pancreatitis in Pets

Puppy Dog Sniffing a Holiday Fall Pumpkin CenterpieceWith Thanksgiving right around the corner, you are likely anticipating a big, mouthwatering meal, and hopefully a few days of leftovers afterward. Many pets look forward to the holiday season as well, as it affords them the opportunity to be given (or to sneak) some choice table scraps.

Unfortunately, those delicious morsels may wreak havoc on your pet. Pancreatitis in pets is a common problem around the holidays, and your friends at Heart of Texas want to help you learn how to spot, and prevent, this dangerous condition.

What is Pancreatitis in Pets?

The pancreas is an organ located near the stomach that is responsible for digestion and blood sugar regulation. Pancreatitis occurs when the pancreas becomes inflamed and swollen, inhibiting the secretion of important digestive enzymes and affecting the surrounding organs and tissue.

Pancreatitis in pets can be dangerous if left untreated. Bring your pet in to see us right away if he or she is experiencing any of the following symptoms of pancreatitis:

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Preventing a Bittersweet Trick-or-Treat: The Best in Halloween Pet Safety

Dog in disguise for HalloweenIf you’re anything like us, you’ve been ready for Halloween for weeks now. Candy bowl full? Check! Pumpkins carved? Oh, yes! Costumes ready? You bet!

As a responsible pet owner, you’ll want to review some Halloween pet safety tips as well. Whether he or she embraces the chaos or you’re expecting a nervous bundle of fur, keeping your pet safe and comfortable is essential.

Being Out There

We had a great time sponsoring the Dogtoberfest this year. Planning on going to another event like Howl-O-Ween Pet Festival or Barktoberfest? Both promise lots of fun, but only if your pet is accustomed to crowds, loud noises, and other animals. If you don’t think this will go over well, just skip these events for now and work on training for future opportunities.  

Getting Into Character

If your pet will be donning a costume this Halloween, we recommend approaching this task with a healthy dose of caution. Proper Halloween pet safety includes the following tips: Continue…

The Paw Prints on Your Heart: Coping with the Death of a Pet

Dog backlight silhouette in sunsetWhether you adopted your pet as a fresh-faced puppy or kitten or you welcomed an older and wiser fur friend into your family, the loss of a beloved animal is never easy. In fact, even though we know it’s an inevitable part of life, the death of a pet is often described as one of the most devastating life events that a person can experience.

Studies show that pet owners are happier overall than people without pets. There’s no question that pets deeply enrich our lives, and that we are made better by the love and affection of a furry friend. But, what do we do when our best pal passes away?

Living with the Death of a Pet

The bond you share with your pet is powerful and rewarding in a way that most human relationships aren’t. The sweet and special friendship that you shared with your pet can make navigating the waters of grief seem overwhelming and impossible. We encourage you to actively grieve for your pet in whatever way feels right to you, and to remember that it will take time to get used to life without him or her. Continue…

posted in:  You & Your Pet