Wednesday, September 24, 2014

World Rabies Day

Each year on Sept. 28, the world unites in the fight against rabies. World Rabies Day is a global health observance created to raise awareness about rabies, and enhance prevention and control efforts. Co-sponsored by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Alliance for Rabies Control (ARC) since 2007, events are held in countries across the globe.

Celebrating the interdependence of human and animal health, this year’s theme is “Together Against Rabies.” Rabies is a preventable, neglected disease that takes the life of one person every 10 minutes. Nearly 85% of those who die from rabies are from impoverished communities in rural areas of Africa and Asia. A study published in 2013 found that while rabies currently costs the world’s poor $124 billion, it could be prevented for just $6 billion.

Photo Credit: Lynn Pannicke
That’s why this global initiative is so important at the grassroots level. Preventing and controlling rabies begins at home, where we can take the necessary steps to keep ourselves, our families and our pets free from horrible disease.

Again, we must take care of our own pets. It’s an excellent time to have your dogs and cats vaccinated, and to learn more about avoiding the animals that typically transmit rabies – raccoons, bats, skunks and foxes.

Too often, fear of rabies pitches people against dogs. It’s estimated that 20 million dogs around the world are indiscriminately culled every year in misguided attempts to control the disease. But when dogs are vaccinated, it helps to halt the disease at its source and prevent human deaths.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Evanger's Breed Buzz: Boston Terrier

Nicknamed "The American Gentleman" because of its dapper appearance, the Boston Terrier is known for a gentle disposition that makes the breed especially suitable as a companion and house pet. They’re intelligent, alert and loving. Requiring moderate exercise and minimal grooming since they don’t shed much, they’re easy to train and eager to learn. While devoted to their owners, these canines tend to be a bit reserved with strangers, and can show aggression toward strange dogs.

Retaining many of the attributes of its bulldog ancestors, the Boston Terrier features a short, fine coat with distinctive markings. Clean-cut physical characteristics include a compact build, square head, broad chest, wrinkle-free muzzle, short tail, soft dark eyes and short back. Their smooth, fine coats come in brindle and white, seal and white, or black and white. Both males and females typically weigh 10 to 25 pounds and are 15 to 17 inches tall.

Bred in the 1870s from a mixture of English Terriers and English Bulldogs, Boston Terriers were originally known as Round Heads or Bull Terriers. Two years after the breed’s name was changed in 1891, the American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized the Boston Terrier as the first genuinely American bred dog.

These playful pups enjoy interacting with family members of all ages, although they can become a bit testy with the very young. Protective at just the right times, they’ll bark excessively if someone approaches their home in a suspicious manner. They’re also fine apartment dwellers that can maintain positive mental and physical shape with a nice daily walk and regular activity in a park or yard.

A healthy Boston Terrier can live as long as 16 years. However, they are prone to heat stroke and should be monitored when playing outdoors on hot days. Their short snouts may cause them to snore, drool and snort in a pug-like manner. Other common health issues include cataracts, allergies and heart problems.

Because of their sensitive skin, avoid foods with wheat and corn. Consider Evanger’s Hi Bio™ Beef SuperFood that’s both grain- and gluten-free. Made with 85% meat, the gentle drying process of this food offers dogs higher moisture level than traditional kibble – making it easier to digest while enabling optimal nutritional absorption. The addition of LactoSacc™ also supports a healthy digestive system, SelPlex™ provides immune support, and BioPlex™ helps maintain healthy skin, coat, superior mineral bioavailability and absorption.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Evanger's and Pioneer Pet Feed & Supply Partner for Cat Food Donations

Last month, The Seattle Animal Shelter announced a need for cat food. Evanger's retailer Pioneer Pet Feed & Supply in Seattle contacted us to partner for a donation. We were thrilled to donate 1,400 cans and partner with this fantastic store to supply even more discounted food through funds raised by Pioneer Pet customers. We absolutely adore the people we get to work with every day who support pets in need!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Evanger's Health Tip: Struvite Crystals and Nutrition

A major cause of inflammation and infection in dogs and cats, struvite crystals are rock-like accretions that scrape sensitive tissues in the urinary tract. Among the symptoms of this condition are frequent urination, straining to urinate, frequent passing of small amounts of urine, urinating in inappropriate places, cloudy or bloody urine, tenderness in the bladder area, fever, lethargy and increased thirst.

Photo Credit: Jeff Legasse
These crystals account for more than one third of all urinary tract stones in dogs and about half of all urinary stones in cats. The problem is more prevalent in middle-aged female pets. Dog breeds prone to struvite stones include Miniature Bichons, Lhasa Apso, Miniature Poodles, Schnauzer, Shih Tzus and Cocker Spaniels.

If your pet is straining to urinate and produces little urine or no urine at all, consider it an extreme emergency that requires immediate veterinarian attention. Otherwise, it can become fatal.

By nature, canines and felines should eat meat. Meat provides a natural acidifier that promotes overall good health. When fed a grain-based diet, the starch alkalizes urine pH that can lead to the development of struvite crystals and stones. To reduce urine pH, you must feed your pet a diet that’s low carb, grain free, potato free and species appropriate. Increasing the amount of high quality meat in their diet can acidify the urine and help prevent crystals.

Evanger's offers a variety of balanced canned dinners that provide ample high quality proteins that meat the unique needs of canine and feline diets. For balanced meals containing vitamins and minerals, try Evanger’s Slow Cooked Chicken Stew for dogs. For cats, consider certified Organic Braised Chicken Dinner, Organic Turkey with Butternut Squash, and Holistic Pheasant Dinner. Evanger’s also offers pure protein supplements, such as Evanger’s Grain Free Game Meats and 100% Organic Chicken that serve as an excellent protein punch to any regular meal.

Your pets will benefit from this proactive approach to help them maintain good nutrition, and help avoid painful and dangerous struvite crystal formation.