Is There a Link Between Grain Free Diets and Heart Disease?

Conscientious pet parents are always on the lookout for ways to enhance the lives of their pets. We vow to take them on more walks, buy them the latest Furbo, and make sure to schedule a wellness exam every year. But what about the food we give them?  

Research shows that feeding your pet a high-quality diet is linked to better health outcomes and a longer lifespan. However, some diets are causing concern among veterinary specialists. In fact, earlier this summer, the FDA issued a cautionary statement that grain free diets may be linked to the development of a condition in dogs called dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). However, as of this fall, veterinary experts are linking the problem instead to boutique, exotic, or grain free diets. Stay tuned as we explore the possible link between grain free diets and heart disease.

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We Talk Turkey: Thanksgiving Fun for Pets

Thanksgiving fun for pets isn't all about food and pet safety.

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and you may be thinking about meals, family, and eating your fill of delicious foods. It’s natural to want to share in the fun with our furry family members too, but the holiday table is fraught with high fat, salty foods that are not the best for our pets.

Feeding our pets traditional Thanksgiving foods like turkey bones, table scraps, gravy, and stuffing can cause GI upset – and worse. Any sudden change in diet and consuming fatty foods can cause a painful and potentially deadly condition called pancreatitis.

With that in mind, we decided to put together a list of ideas for Thanksgiving fun for pets – that don’t include food. After all, a healthy pet is one of the best things to be thankful for!

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Tips for Running with Your Dog

Black and white dog on leash with woman jogging

Dogs love to be with us, and they usually have boundless energy. In fact, they could be the perfect exercise partner—as long as you pay attention to some basic do’s and don’ts of running with your dog.

The Do’s of Running with Your Dog

Do check with your veterinarian. Before starting any new exercise program, be sure to bring your dog in for a preventive care exam. It’s important to assess your dog’s fitness level and know how to avoid any joint or muscle injuries. Continue…

Does My Dog Need a Diet?

Does your dog need a diet? Weight loss is a tough subject, for humans and pets alike! It’s a challenge, especially when we realize we may have spent the winter months on the couch a bit too much, or perhaps eaten one too many desserts. But, for our pets (and for us!), losing weight can add years to their lives and make those years healthier and happier.

The most recent veterinary surveys tell us that over half of our nation’s pets are either overweight or obese. Extra weight may seem to make them extra snuggly, but in reality, overweight pets are at risk for serious and debilitating health conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, and high blood pressure.

Helping your pet to lose weight might be easier than you think. Below, our team gears up to answer the question, does my dog need a diet, or just more exercise? Continue…

A Friendly Reminder for a Pet-Friendly Thanksgiving

If you’ve followed our blog over the years (and, of course, we hope you have!), then you probably know all about pet toxins. You might even have a list of all the no-no’s that can cause pet poisoning. Still, most holidays that involve lots of food go hand-in-hand with increased calls to the Pet Poison Helpline and visits to veterinary emergency clinics.

Along with gratitude, there’s no doubt that Thanksgiving is all about the food and lots of it. Because many pet owners still don’t know about some of the foods that are dangerous to pets, it’s important to remind everyone about these risks. Leon Valley Veterinary Hospital has some great suggestions on how to create a pet-friendly Thanksgiving to keep your furry friend safe this season – and throughout the year!

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Test Your Cat Nutrition IQ

As a group, domestic felines are interesting, sharp, and physically stunning, but they’re also typecast as a pet that’s easy to care for. Felines may be perceived as less demanding of attention or even affection, although scores of individual cats do, in fact, demand (and deserve) both. This is to say that cats are sort of, well, misunderstood. Perhaps the worst gap in knowledge is around cat nutrition.

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The Great Food Debate: When it Comes to Pet Nutrition, What is Best?

Most pets exhibit a clear preference for wet or dry food, but that doesn’t always mean their choice is the healthiest. Indeed, every pet is an individual and, as such, requires individual attention when it comes to lifelong nutritional needs. But the question remains, what is truly better for pet nutrition: wet or dry food?
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Food For Thought on Food For Your Pet

Leon_iStock_000043186202_Large.jpgIn the food aisle, the virtual wall of brightly colored bags of kibble glares back, taunting, and teasing, obscuring your furry friend’s culinary content.

How do you interpret all of the data and marketing on these bags of food for your pet?

Good food will help your pet live the fullest life on the best terms of his or her carefree activity, quality of living, health, and wellness. Some things about food for your pet need to taken into consideration before making an informed decision. Continue…

More Than Holiday Weight: Pet Obesity and Nutrition

Leon_iStock_000032845548_LargePossibly one of the most staggering statistics we’ve seen lately states that over half of all our nation’s cats and dogs. According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, 54% of all American cats and dogs are considered overweight or obese. What does this mean for your pet?

There is a great deal you can do now if your pet is tipping the scale and, by actively participating in your pet’s optimal balance of nutrition and exercise, your pet may live longer and enjoy a higher quality of life. Continue…

Pets and People Food: What You Can and Can’t Feed Your Pets

iStock_000033762572_SmallYou know the scene, you’ve just sat down at dinner, opened a fresh package of cheese, or cracked a can of tuna and there’s your pet… Looking up at you with those soulful eyes, head cocked, maybe a paw curled up or an inquisitive mew… Sometimes it’s hard to say no.

As difficult as it is to deny your pet the foods you eat, it is important to know which people foods are safe for your four-legged friend, and which aren’t. So before you let Fluffy or Fido snarffle down your leftover breakfast burrito or share your ice cream, read up on what’s what when it comes to pets and people food.

 

Pets and People Food: Healthy and Delicious

Here are some healthy food options to enhance your pet’s diet. Keep in mind, these foods are not suggested as a meal replacement. And remember, those extra calories do add up Continue…