Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Julee is happy now. Her allergies are under control.  Here is some helpful information from a good internet source on hot spots and allergies. 

ALWAYS check with your vet to see what is best for your special friend. Just because it is on the internet, does not mean it will work for your furry family. 

What Are Hot Spots? Hot spots, also known as acute moist dermatitis, are red, moist, hot and irritated lesions that are typically found on a dog’s head, hip or chest area. Hot spots often grow at an alarming rate within a short period of time because dogs tend to lick, chew and scratch the affected areas, further irritating the skin. Hot spots can become quite painful.
Why Do Hot Spots Occur? 
Anything that irritates the skin and causes a dog to scratch or lick himself can start a hot spot. Hot spots can be caused by allergic reactions, insect, mite or flea bites, poor grooming, underlying ear or skin infections and constant licking and chewing prompted by stress or boredom.

When Is it Time to See the Vet? 
You should visit your vet for an exam as soon as you notice any abnormality in your pet’s skin, or if your pet begins to excessively scratch, lick and/or bite areas on his fur.
How Are Hot Spots Treated? 
First, your vet will attempt to determine the cause of hot spots. Whether it is a flea allergy, an anal gland infection or stress, the underlying issue needs to be taken care of. Treatment may also include the following:
  • Shaving of the hair surrounding the lesion, which allows air and medication to reach the wound
  • Cleansing the hot spot with a non-irritating solution
  • Antibiotics and painkillers
  • Medication to prevent and treat parasites
  • E-collar or other means to prevent self-trauma as the area heals
  • Balanced diet to help maintain healthy skin and coat
  • Dietary supplement containing essential fatty acids
  • Corticosteroids or antihistamines to control itching
  • Hypoallergenic diet for food allergies
How Can I Help Prevent Hot Spots? 
The following tips may aid in the prevention of hot spots:
  • Make sure your dog is groomed on a regular basis.
  • You may also want to keep your pet’s hair clipped short, especially during warmer months.
  • Follow a strict flea control program as recommended by your veterinarian.
  • Maintain as stress-free an environment for your pet as possible.
  • To keep boredom and stress at bay, make sure your dog gets adequate exercise and opportunities for play and interaction with his human family and, if he enjoys it, with other dogs.
How Can I Make My Dog Feel More Comfortable? 
Your veterinarian will best be able to prescribe the care and medications needed to make your dog more comfortable and allow the hot spots to heal. He or she may also recommend the use of an Elizabethan collar around your dog's neck to keep her from biting and licking the lesions. Such a collar should not be used as a sole means of treatment, since the skin lesions will continue to be painful if left untreated.

What Are Allergies?
Just like people, dogs can show allergic symptoms when their immune systems begin to recognize certain everyday substances—or allergens— as dangerous. Even though these allergens are common in most environments and harmless to most animals, a dog with allergies will have an extreme reaction to them. Allergens can be problematic when inhaled, ingested or contact a dog’s skin. As his body tries to rid itself of these substances, a variety of skin, digestive and respiratory symptoms may appear.
What Are the General Symptoms of Allergies in Dogs?
  • Itchy, red, moist or scabbed skin
  • Increased scratching
  • Itchy, runny eyes
  • Itchy back or base of tail (most commonly flea allergy)
  • Itchy ears and ear infections
  • Sneezing
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Snoring caused by an inflamed throat
  • Paw chewing/swollen paws
  • Constant licking
Allergic dogs may also suffer from secondary bacterial or yeast skin infections, which may cause hair loss, scabs or crusts on the skin.

What Substances Can Dogs Be Allergic To?
A few common allergens include:
  • Tree, grass and weed pollens
  • Mold spores
  • Dust and house dust mites
  • Dander
  • Feathers
  • Cigarette smoke
  • Food ingredients (e.g. beef, chicken, pork, corn, wheat or soy)
  • Prescription drugs
  • Fleas and flea-control products (The bite of a single flea can trigger intense itchiness for two to three weeks!)
  • Perfumes
  • Cleaning products
  • Fabrics
  • Insecticidal shampoo
  • Rubber and plastic materials
Can Dogs Be Allergic to Food?
Yes, but it often takes some detective work to find out what substance is causing the allergic reaction. Dogs with a food allergy will commonly have itchy skin, breathing difficulties or gastrointestinal problems like diarrhea and vomiting, and an elimination diet will most probably be used to determine what food he is allergic to. If your dog is specifically allergic to chicken, for example, you should avoid feeding him any products containing chicken protein or fat.
Please note that food allergies may show up in dogs at any age.
What Should I Do If I Think My Dog Has Allergies?
Visit your veterinarian. After taking a complete history and conducting a physical examination, he or she may be able to determine the source of your dog’s allergic reaction. If not, your vet will most probably recommend skin or blood tests, or a special elimination diet, to find out what's causing the allergic reaction.
How Are Dog Allergies Diagnosed?
If your dog’s itchy, red or irritated skin persists beyond initial treatment by a veterinarian, allergy testing, most often performed by a veterinary dermatologist, is likely warranted. The diagnostic test of choice is an intradermal skin test similar to the one performed on humans.
The only way to diagnose a food allergy is to feed your dog a prescription or hydrolyzed protein diet exclusively for 12 weeks. The importance of not feeding your dog anything but the diet cannot be emphasized enough—that means no treats, table food or flavored medication. This diet will be free of potential allergy-causing ingredients and will ideally have ingredients your dog has never been exposed to. He’ll remain on the diet until his symptoms go away, at which time you’ll begin to reintroduce old foods to see which ones might be causing the allergic reaction.
Please note, many dogs diagnosed with a food allergy will require home-cooked meals—but this must be done in conjunction with your veterinarian, as it requires careful food balancing.
How Can Dog Allergies Be Treated?
The best way to treat allergies is to remove the offending allergens from the environment.
  • Prevention is the best treatment for allergies caused by fleas. Start a flea control program for all of your pets before the season starts. Remember, outdoor pets can carry fleas inside to indoor pets. See your veterinarian for advice about the best flea control products for your dog and the environment.
  • If dust is the problem, clean your pet's bedding once a week and vacuum at least twice weekly—this includes rugs, curtains and any other materials that gather dust.
  • Weekly bathing may help relieve itching and remove environmental allergens and pollens from your dog’s skin. Discuss with your vet what prescription shampoos are best, as frequent bathing with the wrong product can dry out skin.
  • If you suspect your dog has a food allergy, she’ll need to be put on an exclusive prescription or hydrolyzed protein diet. Once the allergy is determined, your vet will recommend specific foods or a home-cooked diet.
Are There Allergy Medications for Dogs?
Since certain substances cannot be removed from the environment, your vet may recommend medications to control the allergic reaction:
  • In the case of airborne allergens, your dog may benefit from allergy injections. These will help your pet develop resistance to the offending agent, instead of just masking the itch.
  • Antihistamines such as Benadryl can be used, but may only benefit a small percentage of dogs with allergies. Ask your vet first.
  • Fatty acid supplements might help relieve your dog’s itchy skin. There are also shampoos that may help prevent skin infection, which occurs commonly in dogs with allergies. Sprays containing oatmeal, aloe and other natural products are also available.
  • An immune modulating drug may also be helpful.
  • There are several flea-prevention products that can be applied monthly to your dog’s skin.
  • If the problem is severe, you may have to resort to cortisone to control the allergy. However these drugs are strong and should be used with caution and only under the guidance of your veterinarian.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

26 More Shopping Days Until Christmas

We have finished our Christmas shopping! Here are some great places to finish yours!

Saturday, Dec. 5th
10 AM - 5 PM

AZGRC logo
It’s Time For AZGRC’s Annual Holiday Fundraiser,
This year the Gift of Rescue focuses on our Goldens in Need, many of whom are rescued out of the shelters. 

Let's light up the virtual Holiday Cactus with gifts as tributes to these dogs, other loved ones and friends. 
  The first 50 donations of $100 or more will receive a beautiful ornament commemorating the Gift of Rescue.    
 CLICK HERE for more information. 

  CLICK HERE to donate.

  Happy Holidays from AZGRC! 

Golden Shopping 
  For great holiday gift ideas openwww.azgrc.org and browse through theAZGRC SHOPS.

From fine wines to custom candles to great novelty gifts, AZGRC SHOPS has something for everyone on your holiday gift-giving list.

And don't forget to shop at 
AZGRC receives a percentage of your purchases when you shop Amazon's charity webpage.  If you have not shopped amazon smileyet, go towww.azgrc.org and click on the amazon
smile logo in the left side of the home page.


Monday, November 9, 2015

Don't Forget One Day Only Fundraiser for Emma

Tuesday, November 10th
In June 2015, AZGRC partnered with Three Scoops of Vanilla for a one day only, online fundraiser jewelry sale to help with medical expenses for Della, our Taiwan girl with the deformed paw.  

Due to the popularity and success of this online fundraiser,AZGRC and Three Scoops of Vanilla will hold a similar event for Emma, a very sweet senior girl who needed extensive medical attention to help her recover from a life of severe neglect and abuse.

Emma has had several teeth removed and just recently underwent more surgery to remove her spleen.  Fortunately, the spot on her spleen turned out to be a benign hematoma and Emma is expected to make a full recovery.

Three Scoops of Vanilla is offering two ways in which funds will be donated back to AZGRC from purchases made on its website on November 10th
First Option: 
The company will donate $15 back to AZGRC for the purchase of the featured bracelet, which costs $45.  NOTE: The bracelet will be added to the Three Scoops of Vanilla website on the day of the fundraiser.

Second Option: Three Scoops of Vanilla will donate 25% of all purchases of any other items on the day of the online fundraiser.
For more details about this one day online fundraiser, click

Tuesday, November 3, 2015



gotcha day
gotcha day
Saturday, November 7th, 2015
10 AM - 1 PMAnnual Meeting will be held during the event.
Vista del Camino Park

7700 E. Roosevelt Street(West of Hayden and Roosevelt
Turn onto Pierce Street by the Salt Cellar Restaurant)
Scottsdale, AZ  85257
On Saturday, November 7th, AZGRC members will gather together to celebrate our 15thanniversary of rescuing wonderful Goldens!  It's a day of great fun, good friends, delicious food, awesome raffle baskets, boutique shopping, and games for four-legged and two-legged participants!
We will meet at Vista Del Camino Park, Ramada 3 from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM and AZGRC's annual meeting will be held at 12:30 PM.  All AZGRC members are invited to attend.
AZGRC has selected a local charity organization to recognize as a way of "Goldens Giving Back" to our community.  Our charity again this year is P.E.T. (Pets Eat Too) Pantry.  P.E.T. Pantry provides pet food and information to clients of Vista del Camino Food Bank in Scottsdale, Arizona and assists people in caring for their pets during times of financial crisis.  Please help this great charity by bringing a bag of dog or cat food to Gotcha Day!
Please RSVP by Thursday, November 5th by calling 602-870-0037 or emailingevents@azgrc.orgPlease use "Gotcha Day" as the subject line for the email and be sure to include the number of people and pups attending.
For more details, watch your mail for the Gotcha Day postcard.
AZGRC will provide food and beverages. Lawn chairs suggested.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Spooky Halloween

Halloween can be a fun event for families and their pets. However, if safety precautions are not taken, it can also be a hazardous time for our four-legged companions. Here are some practical yet potentially life-saving tips that can help protect your pets on Halloween.
1. Dangerous Pet Costumes
Never leave a pet unattended while wearing a costume. Small (or large) parts of a costume can become chewed and ingested and can in turn potentially lead to foreign body ingestion which can be life threatening to your pet.

2. Halloween Decorations and Fire Hazards

If you like to decorate your home in the Halloween spirit, take into consideration what you're putting on display and where the decorations will be placed. Easy-to-reach decorations — or candles — can be eaten or knocked over, potentially leading to choking, foreign body ingestion, electrical shock and even burns and a household fire.
Err on the side of caution while decorating and choose pet-safe products.

3. Noise Affects Pets

Dogs and cats can become skittish and anxiety ridden on Halloween due to the incessant ringing of the doorbell, constant squeals and chatter just outside the door, and small fireworks set off in the street.
In addition, the barrage of strangers dressed in unfamiliar and scary costumes can alarm some pets, increasing their anxiety. Take extra precaution on Halloween: gauge your pet's typical reaction while greeting visitors and decide if putting up a baby gate or leaving your dog or cat in a back room of the house would keep them calmer throughout the evening.

4. Candy and Chocolate Are Toxic

Candy and chocolate are never good for dogs or cats and on Halloween there is an increased chance that Fluffy and Fido may consume treats meant for tricksters.
·        Chocolate and xylitol, a sweetener found in many candies, can be extremely toxic to pets.
·        Lollipops and their sticks can be choking hazards and cause a painful obstruction or foreign body ingestion that may require surgery to remove.
·        Candies wrapped in plastic and other types of wrapping can also lead to chocking or cause an obstruction and upset stomach. 

5. Lost Pets

Halloween isn't an ideal time to let your dog or cat wander outside unattended. While there aren't any documented reports or statistics to indicate that pet abduction increases on Halloween, be mindful that a prankster or a mean-spirited individual could be inspired to mess with your pet.
Take caution and keep pets indoors with you, or escort them outside on a leash if you plan on including your pet in neighborhood festivities. Sudden noises and strange-looking costumes can also spook your pet, causing them to run away, therefore, it’s always a good idea to adorn your pet with a collar and identification tags in case you become separated.
If you dog is not micro-chipped, make sure they have their collar and ID tags. 

Please share what you do to keep your dog safe on Halloween!

Monday, October 19, 2015

The Benefits of Canned Pumpkin for Your Pet by Nancy Kay, DVM

Jack-o-lanterns, Halloween decorations, Thanksgiving, and pumpkin pie! This is certainly the pumpkin season. But, do you know that pumpkins can be important year-round for some pets? Canned pumpkin is a commonly prescribed dietary additive for some gastrointestinal maladies. From diarrhea to constipation, pumpkin can be a dog’s (or cat’s) best friend.
What is canned pumpkin?
Canned pumpkin recommended by veterinarians is nothing more than pumpkin that has been pureed. It is a source of fiber that is low in fat and cholesterol. When purchasing canned pumpkin at the grocery store it is important to read the label carefully. Pie filling canned pumpkin has added ingredients such as sugar, fat, and various seasonings. It is the pure pumpkin product that veterinarians recommend.
How can pumpkin help?
Canned pumpkin can provide a number of health benefits based primarily on its fiber content. Be forewarned that canned pumpkin is mostly water, to the tune of approximately 90%. This means that the content of fiber (not nearly as much as is found in Metamucil).
Pumpkin isn’t a be-all and end-all remedy for cats and dogs with gastrointestinal issues, but it is a reasonably harmless thing to try. If this has you thinking, “Hmm, maybe I’ll give canned pumpkin a try,” I urge you to consult with your veterinarian before doing so. In some cases, added fiber could cause more harm than good. All this being said, canned pumpkin does seem to make a significant difference for some animals in the following ways:
  • Diarrhea: Fiber can act as a sponge that absorbs excess water within the gastrointestinal tract. Diarrhea has a myriad of causes, and added dietary fiber can benefit some of them.
  • Constipation: When there isn’t excess water in the gastrointestinal tract, fiber can help draw in water and ease stool passage. Fiber can also create bulk within the colon that helps alleviate constipation for some animals.
  • Weight loss: Pumpkin provides a relatively low calorie way to give an animal the sense of a full stomach. This can make the reduction of overall food quantity more tolerable for the dieting animal.
·         Hairballs: Canned pumpkin can benefit some cats who suffer from hairballs. The fiber content helps move things along within the gastrointestinal tract. Be reminded that, only rarely are hairballs the true cause of vomiting in kitties.
How much pumpkin should you feed?
The amount of canned pumpkin needed to provide benefit will vary from pet to pet. For example, a Chihuahua may require only a teaspoon per meal whereas a half cup may be required for a Great Dane. As with any dietary additive, it’s best to start small and then work your way up to the appropriate amount. Some animals, particularly those of the feline persuasion, don’t much care for this different tasting orange substance in their food bowl- another reason to begin with only a small amount that is more readily disguised.
If you are feeding your pet only a small amount of pumpkin daily, you may not use an entire can before it spoils. Consider placing the pumpkin in ice cube trays and freezing. Blocks can then be thawed as needed.
Questions for your veterinarian
·         Might my pet benefit from the addition of canned pumpkin?
·         How much canned pumpkin should I feed and how frequently?
·        What should I be watching for once the pumpkin is started?
Do you feed your pets canned pumpkin and have you found it beneficial?

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

We all know the dryer eats socks..................


Animals Eat the Craziest Things! by Nancy Kay, DVM

Golf balls retrieved from Zeus’s stomach
Every year Veterinary Practice News (VPN) holds its, “They Ate What?” Contest. Here’s how it works. Veterinarians submit X-rays of patients who have eaten highly inappropriate things along with photos of the foreign matter once it’s been removed. The VPN editorial staff judges the submissions for originality. The prizes- $1,500 for first place, $1,000 for second place, and $500 for third place- are sponsored by Trupanion pet insurance.
This year’s grand prizewinner was Dr. Gordon Schumucker of Lisbon Veterinary Clinic in Lisbon, Ohio. His patient Zeus, a one-year-old Doberman Pinscher, was examined because of vomiting. An X-ray revealed 20 round, foreign objects within the dog’s stomach. During surgery 20 golf balls were retrieved. Zeus was reported to have access to a driving range.
Second place went to Dr. Mike Jones of Woodland West Animal Hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He removed the end of a fishing pole from the esophagus and stomach of a ten-week-old puppy. Yikes!
The third place winner was Dr. Theresa Taylor of Cherryville Animal Hospital in Cherryville, North Carolina. She examined a six-month-old Labrador Retriever because of vomiting and lethargy. Her X-rays revealed a metallic foreign body within the dog’s bowel. At the time of surgery, she discovered that this youngster had eaten a door hinge. After surgery, it’s reported that the mouthy puppy attempted to eat the wrap securing his intravenous catheter along with the plastic line connected to his intravenous fluids. Why do I think this puppy is in store for a lifetime of surgeries?
Some of the other reported foreign bodies included an animal’s collar, a studded belt, coins, a rock, a spoon, and a large bunch of hair ties. All of the stories had happy endings with one exception. After a python was “away from the house” for a week or so its owner requested an X-ray to determine what his pet ingested while MIA. The X-ray revealed a bejeweled collar within the snake’s intestinal tract. It turns out that a neighbor’s Siamese kitty disappeared right around that same time. It was reported that the snake owner fessed up and purchased another cat for his neighbor.

What’s the craziest thing your pet ever ate?