Archive for July, 2017

  • Why has my pet suddenly lost weight?

    For novice dog owners, it may come as a surprise to you that your adorable puppy will reach her adult height and weight in under a year – or more for a larger breed. Puppies for sale in Los Angeles are typically 8 weeks old, which means that your little furry buddy will be considerably heavier to carry by his first birthday.

    While that is pleasant development, there are times when the change may be worrying, like when your puppy drastically loses weight. Weight fluctuations are normal – even with human beings. But a steady decline in body weight, accompanied with mood change could indicate that something is not right.

    Here are some reasons why your puppy is losing weight:

    1. Malnutrition

    If your puppy loses more than 10 percent of her total bodyweight due to lack of enough food supply, this is a case of malnutrition. This could be the result of abuse by other pets, like when other dogs steal her food, or due to underfeeding a large dog breed. Common symptoms of malnutrition include:

    • Low energy levels
    • Gastrointestinal concerns – inconsistent bowel movements and odorous gas
    • Changed physical appearance – visible ribs and shoulder bones
    • Susceptibility to illness

    Consider increasing your pet’s food to reverse the process, or feeding her alone where other pets won’t attack her.

    1. Internal parasites

    Intestinal parasites such as tapeworms could also lead to weight loss. They are a common problem, though harder to detect. Worms often cause sudden and rapid weight loss because of a lack of nutrients. Discuss with your vet about creating a deworming schedule at a specific interval.

    1. Anxiety

    Anxiety and stress can make your dog lose appetite. If she feels insecure, perhaps because of the surroundings or people around her, she could refuse to eat until she deems it safe to do so. Anxiety could also be caused by separation. It is characterized by:

    • Digging/chewing/destructive tendencies
    • Incessant howling/barking
    • Urinating in the home – or even defecating
    • Escaping

    If you notice these signs, try to help your pet to relax by removing the elements causing anxiety.

    1. Dental problems

    Problems in the mouth could make it painful for your pet to chew her food, resulting in weight loss. Problems such as dental abscess, broken tooth, mouth lesions, or other gum/teeth issues should be checked by the vet to restore your pet’s ability to eat. The vet will also suggest softer meals that you can feed your pet as she recovers.

    1. Pregnancy

    Just like human females, pregnant dogs usually go through a period of nausea and lack of appetite in the early months of pregnancy. However, you should investigate other likely causes of weight loss, such as heart disease, poor digestion, anxiety, poor muscle function, thyroid problems, diabetes, and liver disease. Take your pet to the vet to rule out any other causes of weight loss.

    A good pet owner should stay mindful of any physical and mental changes occurring with their four-legged friend. This will ensure timely intervention and optimal health for your pet.

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  • Planning for your Puppy’s Needs when he stops Growing

    When checking out puppies for sale in Inland Empire, it is usually hard to choose one as they all look so cute and adorable. But your new furry buddy won’t stay small forever, unless she’s a teacup breed. It helps to know when your pet will reach full-size so you can plan for her needs accordingly. For instance, you may need to predict your pup’s final size when:

    • Shopping for a crate
    • Considering splurging on a cozy bed
    • Buying a collar that your dog won’t grow out of
    • Choosing their diet
    • Planning their exercise program

    Small dogs mature at a different rate from the larger breeds as follows:

    1. Toy to medium-sized dogs

    Teacup puppies usually reach their full maturity fastest among all dog breeds. Toy breeds such as Pomeranians and Chihuahuas typically reach their full size at the age of 8 to 12 months – with proper nutrition. Corgis, Beagles, and other small-to-medium breeds follow a similar period. During this period, your toy puppy will shed her puppy fur and grow her adult fur, and also reach her full height and weight.

    Perhaps because of their vulnerability, small breed puppies also mature emotionally and sexually sooner than the larger breeds.

    1. Medium to large breeds

    Breeds in this category include Golden Retrievers, Labs, and Collies. The reach their final height and weight several months after teacup breeds, at around the age of 10 to 16 months. Because of their larger size and fairly fast maturity, medium breeds should be provided with proper nourishment in their first year. Timely veterinary visits are also important.

    These breeds have a much bigger mass to build, and often weigh 50 to 100 pounds at adulthood, compared to 10 – 50 pounds for the smaller to medium-sized breeds. Naturally, they require more time and food to get there.

    1. Giant breeds

    Bernese Mountain Dogs, Great Danes, and other giant dog breeds also mature between 10 and 16 months, with some taking as long as 18 months. These breeds can weigh over 200 pounds when they reach adulthood.

    Because of their rapid growth within the first year, they also need specially formulated diets. It is best to moderate your large puppy’s feeding habits to avoid very fast growth as it could impact her health.

    A few Exceptions

    You can easily categorize your purebred puppy in any one of the three groups to prepare her diet and exercise routine. But if you have a mixed breed, it can be harder to predict her size. Try to trace the dog’s background, especially the female parent, to determine the likely final size of your mixed breed puppy.

    Another general rule is to double their weight at four/five months to determine how much they may weigh as adults.

    Keep in mind that young puppies are very active. Their diet will not only be developing their bodies, but also fueling their play and other activities. Consult your vet for tips on feeding your growing puppy breed.

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