Dear Friend,
In this edition you will find:
Hot Cars
Tick Identification
Seasonal Allergies
Kitties Need Homes


Hot Cars

With the days warming, we are out and about more with our pets. We go for walks. We take them on vacation. We run to the store. We leave them in the car while we go into the store, just like we did in the cooler months. We return to the car to find Fido dead.

Every summer we see pets that die from overheating in a car. They usually have not been in the car for very long. Sometimes they seem fine when the owners get back to the car, only to get very sick a short time later.

Cars heat up very quickly in the sun. The interior of a car can reach temperatures over 120 degrees Fahrenheit in a very short time. Even leaving windows cracked will not allow adequate ventilation and cooling in a car. Dogs do not sweat and cannot cool themselves well in the heat. It does not take long for them to overheat, have serious problems, and pass away.

Some dog breeds are predisposed to hyperthermia. Dogs with very short noses like Bulldogs and pugs, often cannot breathe well to begin with and really cannot pant well enough to cool themselves. Dogs with respiratory problems, especially laryngeal paralysis, are very prone to overheating. Obese dogs are also predisposed because there is too much mass to keep cool.

Summer is a time to have fun outside and travel. Taking our pets with us helps the entire family have fun together. Leaving a dog in the car while the people are having fun often results in a sudden stop to the fun.

When you take your pet with you, please make sure that you have made arrangements so they can be safe. Otherwise, please leave them safely at home.

Tick Identification

We have been getting some questions on tick identification recently. Therefore, we are reviewing the ticks we see in our area.   

These images were taken from the University of Rhode Island TickEncounter Resource Center.

(Please note that ticks do not actually grow as they feed, the abdomen becomes larger as they engorge on the blood meal.)

Dermacentor variabilis is what we call the wood tick here in Western Wisconsin. 

Note the white cape on its back.

Ixodes scapularis is what we typically call the deer tick in our area. It is also known as the bear tick and several other names. 

It is much smaller than the wood tick and has a dark brown cape on its back.

Amblyomma amaericanum is also known as the Lone Star tick. It has started to appear in our area. It is not known to transmit the bacteria that causes Lyme disease.

This tick has a more triangular brown cape with a distinctive white "star" on this cape. 

This image gives a comparison of the relative sizes of the adult ticks and their respective nymphs and larvae. As you can see, the larvae have only 6 legs and are extremely tiny.

Seasonal Allergies

Allergies can be a problem year round for some individuals, but seasonal allergies are seen in others. As we enter the spring/summer months, we are seeing many pollens that have not been seen for about a year. As of this writing the tree pollens are the most prevalent. In late summer we will be seeing ragweed.

In dogs we often see itchiness. The classic distribution pattern is face, feet and ears, but this is not a hard and fast rule. Many dogs will also have skin infections, hot spots, ear infections and other secondary problems.

If you are noticing your dog scratching more than normal, you need to consider that this may be secondary to allergies. To try to keep him/her more comfortable, have him/her seen sooner rather than later. We have medications and techniques that can be used to help control allergy symptoms.

Cats Need Homes

We have a longtime client whose battle with terminal cancer is coming to a close.

She has 2 cats that need foster/furever homes.

Pixel is a 7 year old female spayed domestic medium hair cat. She has very few teeth left and some chronic problems with conjunctivitis but is otherwise generally healthy. She has been living in a home with several other cats. The eye problems need periodic treatment. 

Taz (no picture available) is a 7 year old, gray and white, male neutered domestic short hair cat. He is generally healthy. One of his hind legs was amputated when he was a kitten due to a fracture. He gets around well. He has been living in a home with several other cats.

If you are able to help us place these nice cats, please give the clinic a call to learn more.