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21
Apr

How Big of a Role Does Your Family Play in Your Family’s Life?

Written by admin. Posted in Animal care, Insurance plans for your dog, Pet health insurance plans

Caring for senior dogs

Our precious Elfie is gone. Two weeks ago today, we had him put to sleep after a sudden decline in his health. Elfie was a three year old puppy when I adopted him in 2001, and he was healthy almost until the very end. A couple of years ago he went deaf, was no longer able to keep dry dog down. Neither of these things fazed him. His deafness gave him a legitimate reason to challenge me and he finally got canned dog food for every meal.
When I took him to his yearly animal care checkup in October, though, the vet found a tumor in his stomach. Because Elfie was 19 years old, I decided not to put him through the trauma of treatment. But he remained his proud self, alert, friendly, and demanding. On his last Wednesday I brought home some specialty treats from the gourmet pet care store, one of his favorites, but something I rarely did. In hindsight, I am glad I gave him this treat because the following day he woke up a different puppy.
He was listless, did not want to eat much of anything, not canned dog food, not even people food. I decided to make the difficult appointment so as not to prolong his misery. I held Elfie and petted him as the senior dog care specialist administered the shot. Elfie was gone in less than 30 seconds. It breaks my heart, but few dogs have the long and healthy life Elfie did. So in tribute to the puppy I named after my niece’s strange little Elf on the Shelf, I am planning to post 19 photos, one for each year of his life.

The Loss of Older Dogs Is Difficult for Families
Social media posts about pets are common. And while many are adorable photos a small puppy learning to make navigate up or down the stairs, other posts are about the end of life. In all of these posts, however, one thing is very common. Families love their pets. Whether it is a kitty or a puppy, animals can be wonderful companions, to the young, to the old, and to everyone in between.
With all of this in mind, then, it should come as no surprise that many Americans care for their pets as they would a child. The fact that the majority of pets are obtained from family or friends means that families with pets have an entire support system who want to know about the latest antics of the cat or dog. Christmas family photos and letters include photos, and, yes, social media posts are filled with as many pet photos as there as photos of children and grandchildren.
Many families take the extra step and look at the available coverage that is included in pet insurance plans for dogs and cats. Consider some of these facts and figures about American’s and their beloved pets.

  • 76.43 million cats are in America, meaning the U.S. has more felines than any other country.
  • 46.3 million U.S. households have a dog, which translates into 37% to 47% of all households in the country having a dog.
  • Although the majority of pets are obtained from friends and family, 28% of dogs are purchased from breeders, and 29% of cats and dogs are adopted from shelters and rescues.
  • 84% of U.S. cats are spayed or neutered.
  • $20.46 billion is spent on pet food each year in the U.S.
  • $12.56 billion is spent on pet supplies and over-the-counter medicine each year in the U.S.
  • $12.56 billion is spent on pet supplies and over-the-counter medicine each year in the U.S.
  • $13.59 billion is spent on vet care each year in the U.S.

All of these statistics go to show that Americans are very invested in their pets. When a pet is ill or injured, the owner wants to make sure that they are able to make the right decision about the care needed. for some, the decision to purchase pet insurance is the decision that allows them to give their animals the care that they need. If you find yourself petting your dog as it takes its last breath, you want to know that you gave it the best possible care.

03
Jan

Treatment Options for Dogs and Cats with Arthritis

Written by admin. Posted in Dogs, Pet health insurance plans, Pet medical insurance cost

Dogs

When you have an older dog or cat, whether they’ve been with your family since they were a puppy or a kitten, rescued from a shelter, or recently adopted, you want to protect your animals health. One way to assist you with caring for this important member of your family is through purchasing insurance for older pets. In addition to a basic policy, you may also be able to obtain optional add-on policies for wellness visits and vaccinations.

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), older pets may develop arthritis, which while painful, can be managed. Your dog or cat may be suffering from arthritis if they exhibit one or more of these signs:

    Walking stiffly
    Limping
    Leg favoring

Cats, for example, may not be able to groom themselves well when they have arthritis, according to the AVMA, so if your cat has unkempt fur, this may be a possible sign. Since unkempt fur may also be a sign that they’re suffering with a different illness or condition, it’s important to take them in to see their veterinarian. Regular veterinary visits are an important facet of pet care.

If your veterinarian has determined that your dog or cat has arthritis, then they may make several pet care recommendations. Your veterinarian may, for example, recommend medication as well as low-impact exercise, according to the AVMA. It’s important to follow your veterinarian’s recommendations and ask questions to ensure that you understand the pain management plan that they’ve created to benefit your pet.

An important aspect of providing good pet care is managing your pet’s weight. If your dog or cat has a few extra pounds and they have been diagnosed with arthritis, losing this extra weight may make a major difference with reducing joint pressure and pain. Losing extra pounds may also make a profound impact with potential weight-related issues, including diabetes and heart disease.

Your veterinarian may also recommend some type of physical therapy, such as swimming or walking on a treadmill. Another treatment option that your veterinarian may recommend includes alternative medicine, such as acupuncture. Many acupuncturists also specialize in veterinary medicine.

There are other things that you can do, according to the AVMA, to make your dog or cat more comfortable. These include providing soft bedding, gentle play, and massages. You may also want to assist them with grooming or take them to a groomer. Ramps are also helpful so your pets can reach their favorite spot on the couch or more easily move up and down indoor and outdoor steps.

When you notice that your dog or cat isn’t behaving like their usual self, or if you believe they’re exhibiting signs of arthritis, the AVMA stresses the importance of taking them to the veterinarian. It’s important for your beloved pet to receive a proper diagnosis so that they can receive the right type of treatment for their condition. If your pet receives an early diagnosis for arthritis, this can make a major difference with their pain management plan and overall comfort level.