Much of what I do day to day is routine work; vaccinations to keep pets healthy, spay and neuter to keep the pet population in check, and health exams.
The older I get, the more I like the routine things because they are predictable with just enough of the possibility of problems to keep me alert. Simple is good.
Medicine has become complex: new drugs to treat animal disease; new diseases; new conditions and with all of this comes a plethora of new recommendations on how to manage or treat the things I see. All of this of course comes with a price, a cost, not just in dollars but also in the details of doing. When I become overwhelmed with all of the innovations, I revert back to a list of simple things people can do to help their pets. What follows are a few of those things I have discovered that help in a complex world of possibilities.
? Healthy skin and hair coat: By adding a simple cooking oil to your dog's food daily, you can improve the hair coat, decrease inflammation of skin conditions, and give a little help to those aching arthritic joints of senior canines. Add 1 teaspoon of safflower oil per cup of your dog's food each day.
? Clean ears and get rid of ear mites too: Mineral oil (or baby oil) makes a great ear cleaner. Place several drops of oil on a ball of cotton and really get into the ears to clean all the dirt and wax. This simple procedure can go a long way for healthy ears. If you suspect ear mites (usually cat more than dogs), apply several drops of mineral oil to both ears each week for a month.
? Vomiting or diarrhea: By feeding a bland diet of rice and hamburger for several days, many digestive upsets can be managed. Cook ¼ pound of hamburger and mix with two cups of cooked long grain rice.
? Eye problems: There are four symptoms to eye problems: redness, tearing or eye discharge, squinting, and rubbing or pawing at the eyes. The last two are more serious and may require a veterinary exam. In the short run you can apply artificial tears to the eye three or four times a day. Mild eye problems will be helped.
? Removing ticks: Even with good tick prevention, some ticks will attach. First apply rubbing alcohol to the tick. Wait several minutes and remove the tick with a tweezers. The tick should come off easier.
? Triple antibiotic ointment: For minor wounds and abrasions, a human triple antibiotic ointment is helpful. Apply the ointment, and then keep your pet occupied for several minutes to help him/her forget you applied it. Licking the ointment is not dangerous.
? Burns: Honey applied to burns will keep the burn from becoming infected and helps in the healing process.
It doesn't have to be high tech to be helpful. But remember that none of these tips should take the place of a necessary veterinary visit (that's my disclaimer statement). It doesn't have to be hard to keep pet's healthy.