First Annual Furry Friends 5K Fun Run/Walk

Now here’s an event that is a true mix of a LOT of good stuff . . . a love for animals, the spirit of community support and encouragement of a healthy lifestyle for both humans and canines! It all began as an idea had by eleven-year-old athlete Nora Wichman, who told us she “just wants to help animals.” Well, since that’s exactly what the Humane Society of Jefferson County does, we were delighted to hear about her idea of organizing a 5K! This event will include separate waves for runners, walkers and owners who would like to compete with their dogs! It will be held at the Jefferson County Fair Park in Jefferson and there will be plenty of fun on that day for both participants and spectators! Runners will be officially chip-timed and awards will be presented to the top finishers. Entry fee includes an official race t-shirt, swag bag, post race snacks and beverages. Registrations may be completed online at https://register.itsracetime.com/Register/?event=24159 and those received before April 15, 2014, will receive “Early Bird” pricing. $20 / Children ages 11 and under $30 / Participants ages 12 and up Activities on that day will include concessions, music, a silent auction, 50-50 raffle, and a costume contest for dogs! All proceeds from this event will benefit the HSJC’s Capital Campaign that is underway for the construction of a new shelter! Check out the Furry Friends 5K Facebook page at http://www.facebook.co/FurryFriends5Khsjc. Questions? Call the shelter at 920-674-2048 or send an email to: JeffersonFurryFriends@gmail.com.

Stocking a Pet First Aid Kit and Poison Prevention Tips from Pet Poison Helpline

National Poison Prevention Week was March 16 – 22, 2014, and while much of the focus is on educating parents of small children, Pet Poison Helpline says to remember that pets can be just as vulnerable! Dogs and cats have insatiable curiosity and tend to get into trouble investigating new things by licking or tasting them. This is because some foods, medications and other household items that are safe for humans can be devastating to pets. The veterinary and toxicology experts at Pet Poison Helpline offer two important tips for keeping pets safe:

1)  Keep Dangerous Items out of Reach

Most homes have hidden dangers in medicine cabinets, purses, kitchens and garages. Pet owners should familiarize themselves with things poisonous to dogs and cats, and keep them stowed out of reach. The best resource for information, including a comprehensive list items dangerous to pets, is Pet Poison Helpline’s website and mobile app.

2)  Stock a Pet First Aid Kit

In the event of an unfortunate mishap, a properly stocked Pet First Aid Kit can contribute to a much happier ending. Here are recommended contents:

For Potentially Poisoned Pets:

  • Phone number for Pet Poison Helpline: 1-800-213-6680
  • Hydrogen peroxide 3 percent used to induce vomiting in dogs– make sure it’s not expired
  • Oral dosing syringe or turkey baster – for administering hydrogen peroxide
  • Teaspoon/tablespoon set – for measuring appropriate amount of hydrogen peroxide
  • Liquid hand dish washing detergent, such as Dawn or Palmolive
  • Rubber or latex gloves
  • Triple antibiotic ointment, like Neosporin™
  • Vitamin E (a small container of oil or several gel caps)
  • Diphenhydramine tablets 25mg – with NO other combination ingredients
  • Ophthalmic saline solution or artificial tears
  • Can of tuna packed in water or tasty canned pet food
  • Sweet electrolyte-containing beverage
  • Corn syrup (1/4 cup)
  • Vegetable oil (1/2 cup)

For Injured Pets:

  • Phone number for local emergency veterinary hospital
  • Gauze roll and pads
  • Medical tape
  • Ruler or other rigid material for splint
  • Scissors and tweezers
  • Thermometer and sterile lubricant, like KY™ jelly
  • Rubber or latex gloves
  • Towel or blanket
  • Muzzle (for dogs)
  • Cone collar (for cats)
  • Triple antibiotic ointment, like Neosporin™
  • Ophthalmic saline solution – make sure it does not contain any cleaners or soaps

Store the items in a plastic or other waterproof container, and in a location out of the reach of pets. Especially when poisoning is suspected, it’s imperative to call Pet Poison Helpline or your veterinarian prior to administering any therapies at home. They will first help you determine if the item ingested was poisonous to begin with, and will then advise what the treatment or antidote is and whether or not inducing vomiting is recommended.

“It’s really important to be wary of ‘home remedies’ found on the Internet when treating a potentially poisoned pet,” said Ahna Brutlag, DVM, MS, DABT, DABVT and associate director of veterinary services at Pet Poison Helpline. “We hear it all – pet owners who, after Googling their situation, hope to resolve it by giving the pet milk, burnt toast, raw eggs, peanut butter, or table salt. These remedies simply don’t work and can cause additional undue stress for the pet and owner.”

The Case of Penny

Pet poisonings usually happen when least expected, and are often caused by seemingly harmless events. For example, earlier this year, Penny, a three year-old, 13 pound, Jack Russell terrier consumed 10-12 children’s gummy multivitamins. Within hours, Penny started vomiting, became unsteady on her feet, and collapsed at home. She was then rushed to the veterinarian. After her initial examination, she was found to have very low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). While she improved a little after starting her on IV sugar source (dextrose), the veterinarian ended up calling Pet Poison Helpline for further treatment advice.  It was found that the vitamins Penny consumed contained an extraordinarily large amount of xylitol, a common sweetener ingredient that can be poisonous to dogs. Penny had ingested enough to cause fatality. The following day, Penny began to develop liver problems but, thankfully, after two days of intensive treatment, her liver began to recover and she was eventually released from the hospital in excellent condition. In this case, the pet owner could have given Penny 1/4 cup of corn syrup from a Pet First Aid Kit to help raise her blood sugar while being transported to the pet hospital.

Accidents can and do happen, but outcomes are much better when pet owners are prepared. When adverse situations arise, don’t hesitate to call a veterinarian or Pet Poison Helpline at 1-800-213-6680.

About Pet Poison Helpline

Pet Poison Helpline, an animal poison control center based out of Minneapolis, is available 24 hours, seven days a week for pet owners and veterinary professionals that require assistance treating a potentially poisoned pet. The staff provides treatment advice for poisoning cases of all species, including dogs, cats, birds, small mammals, large animals and exotic species. As the most cost-effective option for animal poison control care, Pet Poison Helpline’s fee of $39 per incident includes follow-up consultation for the duration of the poison case. Pet Poison Helpline is available in North America by calling 800-213-6680. Additional information can be found online at www.petpoisonhelpline.com.

Become Mainstream

“’Dog-friendly’ travel is no longer a niche,” reports Dave Kendrick, editor and publisher of the online newsletter and website Dogtrekker.com.  “So many people now travel regularly with their dogs that a hotel not accommodating them is losing out on a fabulous opportunity,” says Kendrick.

In just the 2.5 years since Dogtrekker.com was founded, Kendrick says, “dog-friendly travel has gone from something a few businesses offered to, “a service differentiator provided by the most successful destinations, hotels, restaurants, attractions and shops.  In this past year, alone, our readership on our site and our opt-in newsletter doubled.”

“We survey dog travelers regularly and, in the past year, 70% of DogTrekker readers traveled overnight with their dogs.  Destinations that go out of their way to welcome dog-owning travelers have a competitive advantage,” says Kendrick.  “That’s particularly so in the wine industry where, each week, about 30 wineries ask to be listed as welcoming dogs.”

He explains that a national study by Dogtrekker.com found that 83% of dog travelers turn to search engines and websites to plan their trips.  In the 6th annual Beast of the Bay awards just announced, readers of Bay Woof – a monthly newspaper serving 70,000 San Francisco Bay Area and Northern California dog owners – chose Dogtrekker.com as Best Dog-Friendly Travel Website, Best Dog Blog and runner up as Best Overall Website for Dog Lovers.

“Those dog owners voted us best, because they’re looking for  accuracy and detail  not otherwise found in travel media, and because they know what we write about has been paw-tested,” says Kendrick who describes Dogtrekker’s research lab, a Labrador Retriever named Kayla, who is assigned to field-test destinations for their dog-friendly qualities.

Kendrick points to Stanford Inn by the Sea in Mendocino as one of those places.  “We described the Canine Cruiser, a custom redwood outrigger canoe built by sister company Catch-A-Canoe specifically for the Stanford Inn’s guests to paddle or sail the Big River Estuary with their dogs. You don’t find that kind of dog-focused detail in normal travel stories.”

“When people choose where they travel based on that the canine member of their family will be traveling with them, that’s huge. No, dog-friendly travel can no longer be considered to be a niche, it’s now mainstream,” states Kendrick.

More about the Best of the Bay Awards is found at baywoof.com and dogtrekker.com.