Pet Doctor Barbie and the Pet Food Dude

It’s been a while since I’ve done a Pet Doctor Barbie post. It’s past due for a new episode, yes? I think it’s time for Pet Doctor Barbie to meet one of her self-appointed arch nemeses, Pet Food Dude.

 

Episode 8

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Hi Mrs. Sandford, good to see you and Muffin. It’s been a while!

b1

I’m really glad you’re doing housecalls now. I want to get Muffin’s bump looked at again.

OK, I’ll just look at my notes here- 1 cm, top of head…mm hmmm… So where we left it one year ago was that you were going to go talk to your husband and then we were going to aspirate it.

b4

Oh….yes. It’s grown quite a bit since then. We really need –

b3

Yes, I wanted to talk to you about that. I’m a bit upset that you didn’t mention last time how his kibble might have caused this.

b8

We don’t really understand why cancer occurs, Mrs. Sandford. The important thing now is to take care of this mass. I’d hate for you to blame yourself because of your food selection.

b6

I don’t blame myself. I blame you. How much do you make from Big Pet Food anyway?

Actually nothing. But aren’t you feeding a boutique brand anyway? You told me last time you were feeding…let me check…organic grain free non-GMO preservative free all natural Wolf Chunks.

b7

Yes, and you told me to stop and to go back to that one full of corn and despair!

Actually, no, I said Wolf Chunks were fine if that’s what you wanted. But about that mass…

b9

I’ve been using turmeric on the advice of Pet Food Dude. Do you know Pet Food Dude? Can I borrow your computer? This guy knows all your tricks.

b11

Sure, have at it. May I ask what tricks you are referring to?

Vaccines. Pet food. You know. Poison. They are full of free radicals that are overpowering the antioxidants and preventing cellular apoptosis no matter how many carrots I add.

Here’s his site. He knows your medicine is a lie and you’re really just after our money.

petfooddude

I’m going to log on and see what the forums say about your “cancer just happens” line. Oh wait….shoot. My membership is expired. Can you hand me my wallet?

b10

Oh, I think I’ve seen his site. Is he the one who sells supplements and seminars on dog juicing?

Yes! He’s a pioneer. OK, credit card updated, I’m in.

b2

OK, here we go: Have I at any point in the past fed kibble from Big Pet Food or gotten Muffin vaccinated? Yes, 10 years ago. So they say here that this is why he has cancer and it isn’t responding to the turmeric. They also said you would say exactly what you said about it not being their fault, and not to fall for it. What do you have to say to THAT?

Mrs. Sandford, I need to level with you here.

b15

It really doesn’t matter to me what you’re feeding Muffin. I am glad you care about him and want to do what’s best for him. I do too! I promise! I’m having a really hard time talking to you when you’re typing at someone who is convinced I’m out to hurt you both. Right now I am just really worried about the size of this mass on his head. I think we need to get him in for a full evaluation ASAP.

*tap tap*    I’ll think about it. I haven’t tried coconut oil yet.

May I ask why you even had me come out?

b12

I just wanted this all on DropCam- see it over there? It’ll be on Pet Food Dude’s YouTube tonight. He’s doing a “Vets Revealed” bit. Well, since you didn’t do anything I’m sure you aren’t expecting payment. You can see yourself out.

TO BE CONTINUED….

Pawcurious: With Veterinarian and Author Dr. V

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Balancing the scales in medicine

I am becoming increasingly convinced the communication gap between veterinarians and clients is the number one problem we’ve failed to solve. We’re just not on the same page a lot of the time, it seems, and it makes me sad. I can’t read a single article online without coming across “veterinarians are money grubbing pigs that suck” (true blog title) and someone else saying “if you can’t afford x/y/z/q you shouldn’t have gotten a pet, jerk.” I feel as though this is perhaps a bit extreme, but it’s what happens when we don’t work together to identify our goals.

Common Fallacies of Bad Client Interactions

rotten

(In just as many cases, the vet on the left is an associate up to his or her ears in student debt and just trying to make it through the day without getting yelled at one more time, and the client on the right is a stressed out single parent who just spent a grand fixing her car.)

Much of this angst comes from the pervasive assumption that in all cases we will do everything we can medically, no matter what, which was fine a while back when “everything” meant “antibiotics” but as veterinary medicine has advanced, has come to mean “MRI, spinal tap, radiation.”

This assumption, of course, carries over from human medicine: if you’ve got the insurance, you’re getting the treatment. Everyone’s happy, right? Right?

Not so much. Satisfaction with a medical course of action relies on multiple factors.

Sometimes getting to “Everyone Happy” (Square B) is impossible. D’s not so bad either, but A and C are no-fly zones.

Human Medicine Satisfaction

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I would argue that satisfaction with outcomes is directly correlated to the balance between the amount of treatment pursued, and its benefit.

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So really, the goal here isn’t to push everyone towards the far extremes of treatment; it’s about getting to that center line of balance. In human medicine this change is slowly creaking along with things like hospice care, which moves people from C to D in low treatment benefit situations, and increased access to insurance coverage, which moves you from A to B in high benefit situations. With Mom, we were squarely in the D category, and while we’re not HAPPY, it’s a hell of a lot better than if we had treated her to death.

Make sense?

So how does this apply to veterinary medicine? It’s similar, except we tend to find ourselves walking a line most strongly related to finances.

The Veterinary Experience

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There’s a whole lot of people in square C these days, who spent more than they really had on treatments they weren’t sure they wanted, because they felt like they had to, and when things go downhill as they often do with very ill pets, people can end up really, really disillusioned with the profession.

Now, since we have no ability to magically divine which people are up for specialty treatment and which people are not, we always offer all the options to clients- as we should. There are people who spend thousands, lose their pet, and are still ok with the outcome- but they were also very clear on the risks and made an informed decision. Many clients, it seems, feel as if they are not.

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So what do we do to improve outcomes? In my experience, the best way to move the dial from A to B is pet insurance, at least for emergency situations. There are few situations more likely to prompt a Facebook mob than a pet who died a preventable death because the owner couldn’t afford treatment and the ER vet wouldn’t do the treatment for free- nor should they. Owners need to shoulder some of the responsibility here of financial preparation, and if they refuse to take even basic steps to be prepared, maybe they really are a crappy client.

And conversely, moving the dial from C to D involves good veterinary communication, and a willingness to understand that lots of factors go into the decision about whether or not to seek treatment. If a veterinarian talks a senior on a fixed income into a kidney transplant for a 15 year old cat in renal failure, after she expressed concern about paying her rent for the month and her own upcoming surgery- maybe they really are a money grubbing vet.

But I like to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. Clients and vets both have work to do here. And I believe with all of my heart that the better we get about empowering clients to make informed decisions, the more that will carry over into human medicine- which is a wonderful thing.

I realize this is a vastly oversimplified explanation of some really complicated issues, but hey, we have to start somewhere. Whatever it is we’re doing now sure doesn’t seem to be working too well.

Pawcurious: With Veterinarian and Author Dr. V

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Before and After – Part 2

This one also just needed some minor adjustments.  Take a little off the top (so he isn’t quite so entered in the image!), remove the flower in front – too distracting, take the blade of grass on the left side of his face out and blur the areas of grass that are in focus on the sides of the image.  I’m not sure if I agree with the crop (I find it feels squishy if the dog’s head doesn’t have breathing room) but I definitely agree with everything else!

Before:

After:

Crazy Coulee and Little Lacey

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DR. NICHOLAS DODMAN: INTER-CAT TERRITORIAL AGGRESSION

101118_4177_dodman154.jpgAggression is one of the most common feline behavior problems reported to behaviorists. Cats may exhibit several different types of aggression including territorial aggression, non-recognition aggression, status-related aggression, fear aggression, redirected aggression and medically-induced aggression.

Here I will address territorial aggression – one of the most common expressions of feline aggression.

TERRITORIAL AGGRESSION

Cats are, by nature, solitary hunters and have strong territorial instincts. Feral cats mark their territory with urine, feces, and certain natural odors secreted by scent glands. Scent marking serves to indicate that the territory is occupied and serves to reduce antagonistic encounters between cats.

When food is plentiful, as it is in our homes, groups of cats can and often do live harmoniously. Groups of cats may even develop something of a social structure and seem to have a mutual understanding of their own house rules. These house rules may include time-sharing arrangements.

Feuding cats have little chance to avoid each other within the four walls of the home and battles that would naturally end with one or other cat running away can never reach that conclusion. With this problem, clashes are usually ongoing with one cat the perpetrator of the attacks and the other simply trying to keep out of its way.

The best way to attempt to avoid this problem is to gradually introduce a new cat using the technique described below, though peace and harmony cannot be guaranteed using any approach.

Treatment of Territorial Aggression

Systematic desensitization and counterconditioning is the behavioral technique of choice to reintegrate feuding cats. Systematic desensitization involves separating and then gradually (and systematically) increasing the two cats’ exposure to each other.

Ideally, neither cat should show anxiety or aggression during the introduction or reintroduction process. If they do, the owner must arrange for them to go back to a previous peaceful level of exposure before attempting to advance in the program once more.

Below is what I call my 7STEP program for re-introducing feuding cat. A scaled down, more rapid version of the program can be employed when introducing a new cat to a cat-containing household.

STEP 1 (of the Desensitization Program)
Completely separate the feuding cats in 2 separate environments within the house.

STEP 2
Now begins the process of desensitization and counterconditioning.

STEP 3
The door should be cracked open 1-2 inches and secured with a doorstop or hook and eye.

STEP 4
Only when peace prevails at the Step 2 level of exposure, he opening should be widened to a 4-6 inches.

STEP 5
Once the cats are able to eat and play close to each other across the screen, the next step is to reintroduce them to each other for a short time in the same room.

STEP 6
Once the cats are eating peacefully side-by-side on harnesses or in their carriers, the next stage is to free the more passive cat from the harness or carrier.

STEP 7
Once the cats can be together peacefully for extended periods of time, the owner should make sure to praise them and/or give them food treats whenever they are seen together.

CONCLUSION
The process described above is tedious and it may take several months to achieve acceptable results. However, no matter how frustrating it may be, do not rush the reintroduction process as that will only exacerbate the problem.


Click here to read the complete article
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Dr. Dodman is a Professor in the Department of Clinical Sciences at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine and Director of the school’s Animal Behavior Clinic. He is also Chief Scientific Officer for the CENTER FOR CANINE BEHAVIOR STUDIES. He has written over 100 scientific articles and several popular press books, including The Dog Who Loved Too Much and The Cat Who Cried for Help.

Halo

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Nov 23, My Pitbull is eating small amounts of food

I have a blue Pitbull (2 years and 7 months). He is a very healthy boy but he is not eating good !!! I mean he is eating a small amount of food, he is
Dog Food Blog | Best Dog Food Guide

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Life at 3MPH

The fraternity of extreme adventurers is actually and quite understandably small.  I’ve reduced the reason down to one simple equation – the glory versus the grind.  If glory>grind no. If grind>glory maybe.  There’s grit in there but that’s a conversation for another time.  
Most begin with the finish line in mind and forget about the millions of steps it takes to get there and don’t realize they’re doomed from the very start. 
I’ve crossed paths with hundreds of would be adventurers who wanted to conquer the AT or the PCT, the vast majority of whom succumbed to the algebra but one, I’m happy to say, did not.  My good friend, John Stalls.  
What I can say about this lad is, other than that he walked from coast to coast, is that as a strapping 6’5 tall and ruggedly gaunt man, he’s the poster boy for great adventures.  Even though I’ve walked many more miles than him, when and if I ever get a Wikipedia page, I hope they put John’s picture on it because he looks the part. 
And lives it, too.  Since he completed his cross country journey Johnathan Stalls has built an organization committed to promoting wellness through walking.  Mile by mile his walk to connect has inspired many people in Denver CO and now he wants to expand it to other communities.  John is a man I’d put my money behind and I hope you will support him in his campaign to realize his vision for Life at 3MPH.  
  

THE JOURNEY CONTINUES

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Nov 23, My computer searches for AAFCO and I end up here

Well I was just wondering if your site hacks into peoples computers telling them to go on this site? Because my computer keeps typing in AAFCO and other
Dog Food Blog | Best Dog Food Guide

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Recent Study on Gum Disease Diabetes Connection Highlights the Many Links Between Dental and Overall Health, Says Medical Center Dental Care



Taking care of your teeth is an important part of taking care of your overall health.


According to a June 26 article on Medical Xpress, a new study has been published that adds evidence to the prevailing medical opinion that there is a link between periodontal disease and heart disease. While previous studies had done a good job of drawing a causal relationship between good dental hygiene and a decreased risk of heart disease, this study aimed to dig into the ?why? and ?how? of the issue. The article explains that there is a cell receptor (CD36) that produces a protein when exposed to bacteria. This protein in turn leads to an increase in inflammation, which can affect both periodontal and heart disease. Los Angeles dental group Medical Center Dental Care explains that this link between heart disease and periodontal disease is just one of the many health benefits that good oral hygiene and regular preventative care with a West Hills dentist can have on a person?s overall health. The dental experts at Medical Center Dental Care note that there are also ties between dental health and risks of diabetes, osteoporosis, and premature birth.


Diabetes ? Medical Center Dental Care explains that the link between diabetes and dental health is actually a two-way street. While diabetes can increase the risk of infections, therefore worsening gum disease, it was also seen that patients with gum disease often have a more difficult time keeping their blood sugar at an appropriate level
Osteoporosis ? Since teeth are made of bone, it is easy to understand how a disease that makes bones weaker and more brittle could be a detriment to oral health, says Medical Center Dental Care. Those suffering from osteoporosis often experience the loss of teeth, which can, in turn, lead to other dental health issues, if not addressed appropriately.
Premature Birth ? Researchers have also found that a certain bacteria associated with periodontal disease has been disproportionately detected in women who given birth prematurely or to stillborn infants. Medical Center Dental Care notes that it is important for women who are pregnant to consult a dentist as part of her prenatal care.

While there are a wealth of medical benefits that can arise out of proper dental care, Medical Center Dental Care reminds patients that they provide a variety of cosmetic services as well. They note that anyone looking for everything from a West Hills orthodontist to an expert endodontist to perform a root canal procedure with minimal discomfort, can call (818) 452-0038 today to make an appointment, or learn more about their practice at http://www.mc-westhillsdentalcare.com.







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Plucky, pawless Poodle gets prosthetic paws

The Poodle (and Dog) Blog

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Thoughts on the Second Pregnancy

This could easily turn into a long, rambling post about all of the thoughts I’ve been having regarding the major differences (at least for me) between the time when you’re expecting your second baby vs. your first – but I’m going to force myself to at least try keep it succinct. I wasn’t even sure if this was worthy of a blog post, but behind the curated fashion and home and recipe posts that are planned well in advance into our editorial calendar, there is real life me, sitting here at my computer, listening to my toddler sing loudly downstairs and feeling the fluttering kicks of a tiny baby in my belly, pondering what life will be like with two and how different things feel this time around. So I figured I’d share at least a few of these thoughts, because this is what’s going on lately in my head, dudes.

A first pregnancy (or process of adoption, I’m certain) is an overwhelmingly exciting period drenched in newness and the unknown and tiny details and celebrations and expectations and nervousness. There was so much planning while I was pregnant with Essley – items we “had” to buy, nursery design, breastfeeding and birthing classes, baby showers, birth plans, home projects (my nesting instinct was out of control), etc. The baby-on-the-way consumed our lives, and looking back, I understand why. We had no idea what to expect, and I felt a lot of pressure to do things “the right way.” Of course, the excitement part of it all was pretty great, but there was as a lot of stress as well.

While I’m equally as thrilled for this one to arrive, it’s a different kind of excitement. Robbie and I are both so much more laid back about all of it (sometimes to the point where I’m like, “Should I be worried? Am I blowing things off? Should I be preparing more?”). I guess I just feel generally more at ease, both because I’m more experienced this time and because I’m wiser in terms of the reality that it’s not going to turn out how we’d plan for it anyway. The majority of the products we bought because we were absolutely sure we’d need them for Essley we rarely used. My insane Type A scheduling of my work around what I thought would be her sleeping schedule for the first few months went out the window immediately. She barely even hangs out in her immaculately planned/designed nursery space. So maybe this is the reason why for #2, I haven’t even thought about where the baby will sleep (and don’t even know for sure if we’ll be buying a larger house before or after the baby’s arrival), or what things we’ll need to get, or how I’ll schedule work, or much of anything at all. And as for the pregnancy itself, with Essley, I thought about the fact that I was pregnant constantly. This time, I’m much more focused on other things, to the point that sometimes I’ll be doing something and suddenly I’ll get a wave of nausea or feel exhausted and it will hit me – “oh yeah, I’m pregnant.”

It’s actually pretty cool how different I feel this time around. It’s not better or worse – it’s equally as awesome, but in a contrasting way. The pregnancy itself has been physically very similar to my first, but the way I’m dealing with it/feeling about it is another experience entirely. Unlike the first time, this isn’t an unknown full of intense sparkle and butterflies – it’s a more subtle, comfortable anticipation. And I’m grateful to feel this way, and for the way I felt last time too. It genuinely feels like a gift to be able to appreciate such different things about each pregnancy. It will be interesting to see how things progress, and if I’ll start to feel anxiety about preparations later or if this mellow feeling will continue. Either way, I’ll take it.

For those of you who have had more than one child, either via pregnancy or adoption, how was your experience different the second time? Was it similar to mine in terms of being more laid back than the first? I’d love to hear about in the comments (or via email).

(Top image from my last pregnancy, because unlike my almost weekly belly shots with #1, I haven’t even bothered to take any pictures this time. I guess maybe I should get on that?)

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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