Canine Blood Donors

Health

With the holiday season upon us, I’m naturally thinking about gifts. Hello everyone, CEO Olivia here. It’s said that giving blood is the gift of life. Just like humans, animals need blood banks too. A safe, regulated supply of blood is necessary for surgeries or transfusions such as in a case of poisoning.

Here in Canada, the Canadian Animal Blood Bank (CAAB) is in need of canine donors to help keep their reserves up as we head into the holiday season. Much like how Canadian Blood Services exists for people, the CAAB is a non-profit organization that supplies canine blood to Canadian veterinarians.

The organization is based in Winnipeg, where collected blood is processed & stored, but it also has collection sites in Toronto, Calgary & Edmonton. Each blood donation can potentially help two dogs.

I myself would donate but do to my idiopathic epilepsy, my blood has too many AED’s (anti epileptic drugs) in it.

To donate a dog needs to be:

  • in good health,
  • at least 55 pounds ( 25 kg. )
  • one to eight years old
  • up to date with vaccinations

Some larger breeds, such as Great Danes or Mastiffs, need to wait longer to donate because they are not yet fully grown after one year.

The process is very similar what a human goes through when donating blood. It takes about 20 minutes start to finish. Upon arrival, dogs are weighed, a sample is taken to test for packed cell volume & protein levels. If everything is good, the dog is put on an exam table while it’s human is shown how to help the process go smoothly. This naturally includes treats. The actual donation only takes a few minutes, during which time 450 to 500 milliliters of blood are collected. Dogs who are eligible can safely donate every three months.

How fascinating. Has your good dog ever donated blood? Perhaps you’ve needed blood in an emergency. I’d be interested in hearing your story.

CEO Olivia

Have you sniffed out my new free eBook series on living with Canine Epilepsy? Just go to my store & paw the subscribe button at the bottom of the page.

 

Advertisements

Homemade Toothpaste for Good Dogs

Health

homemadetoothpaste

Did you know I brush my teeth? Well, my HuMom does it for me, but it’s part of our evening routine. Good oral hygiene is as important for us dogs as it is for you humans. A bad tooth can lead to infection.

There are commercial toothpastes made just for dogs which is what we use. I would not recommend this recipe for my fellow epi-warriors due to the salt content but for the rest of you canines today I’ll show you how to make a super easy homemade paste that hopefully you will love.

Take one bouillon cube & dissolve it in warm water (about 2 cups). This will make the mix tasty. Add some baking soda to the bouillon & stir.  Baking soda is an abrasive that will help remove plaque.

Next, add organic coconut oil to the mixing bowl & stir until the mixture is even. Coconut oil ties all the ingredients together, & is safe for your dog. Store your doggy toothpaste in a resealable container. The mixture can be stored at room temperature.

Now you can brush your good dogs teeth & keep them in tip top shape. Check out our good friend Dista of Critter Comforts two short videos about cleaning your good dogs teeth.

Video 1 Tips on how to brush your good dogs teeth.

Video 2 How to brush your good dogs teeth.

A final thought, if your good dog simply hates the taste of any toothpaste, you can simply use a piece of gauze. Gently rub the teeth with the gauze or add a dab of organic coconut oil. A bit of coconut oil on a finger can help too. This can be done with any dog, even epi-warriors like myself.

CEO Olivia

Audio Seizures in Cats

Health

Good day everyone, CEO Olivia here. Last week we added a new member to the family, a one year old kittie. He seems to be healthy & is clearly a happy little soul. I’m sure the epi-monster isn’t after him but other cats aren’t as fortunate.

While sniffing about the inter-webs I discovered that some epileptic cats can be triggered by sounds. This is known as “audiogenic reflex seizures”, & they can happen with humans, too. The official name with cats is feline audiogenic reflex seizures (FARS).

FARS has been seen in both pedigree & non-pedigree cats. Among pedigrees, it was most predominant in the Birman breed. It has also been discovered that the syndrome occurs in older cats – mostly from 10 to 19 years old, with the average age of onset being 15 years.

What’s interesting are the trigger sounds, which are pretty common everyday noises:

  • Crinkling tin foil
  • Metal spoon clanging in a ceramic feeding bowl
  • Chinking or tapping of glass
  • Crinkling of paper or plastic bags
  • Tapping on a computer keyboard or clicking of a mouse
  • Clinking of coins or keys

Other, less-reported triggers included breaking the tin foil from packaging, mobile phone texting & ringing, clock alarms, Velcro, stove igniting ticks, running water, a dog jangling its collar as it scratched, computer printer, firewood splitting, wooden blocks being knocked together, and walking across a wooden floor with bare feet or squeaky shoes.

Keeping the cats away from these sounds can reduce the seizures, but many of them are the common sounds of life & you can’t keep your good cat sequestered in a soundless room. But with further research comes the hope that vets will become more aware of the problem & hopefully, researching treatment may help cats with this condition.

Does your good cat suffer from FARS? If so I’d like to hear about your experience.

CEO Olivia