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Doggy Dementia??

August 30, 2016 | Filed under: Uncategorized — Trumann Staff @ 2:51 pm

Pet Talk
By Dr. Norette L. Underwood
Is Your Furry baby Showing Signs of Doggy Dementia?
If your dog gets a clean bill of health, or if your veterinarian doesn’t feel her behavior changes are the result of an underlying disease process, it’s time to consider the possibility of canine cognitive dysfunction (CD), which is similar in many ways to Alzheimer’s disease or dementia in humans.
Clinical signs of cognitive dysfunction syndrome are found in 50 percent of dogs over the age of 11, and by the age of 15, 68 percent of dogs display at least one sign.
However, dogs as young as 6 years can begin to experience mental decline, so if your pet is around that age and is showing one or more symptoms of CD, don’t rule out an age-related problem. The five most common symptoms of CD are:
• Increased total amount of sleep during a 24-hour period
• Decreased attention to surroundings, disinterest, apathy
• Decreased purposeful activity
• Loss of formerly acquired knowledge, which includes housetraining
• Intermittent anxiety expressed through apprehension, panting, moaning, shivering
Other signs, especially in the later stages of CD, can include:
Failure to respond to commands and/or difficulty hearing Standing in corners or facing walls
Inability to recognize familiar people Excessive barking
Difficulty navigating familiar environments Loss of bladder or bowel control
Wandering aimlessly Confusion/disorientation
Cognitive dysfunction in a dog is a diagnosis of exclusion. There are many conditions your older pet can acquire that mimic the signs of cognitive decline, so it’s important to rule out all other physical reasons for a change in behavior.
For example, a small seizure can cause a pet to stand still and stare. If your pet seems detached, he could be in pain. Inappropriate elimination can be due to kidney disease. These disorders and many others can result in a change in behavior unrelated to cognitive decline. That’s why it’s so important to rule out all possible alternative reasons, especially in aging pets.

Doing a senior wellness exam every 6 months is a great way to make sure your aging pet is doing well. If you have questions about dementia and senior wellness contact Dr. Norette L. Underwood of Best Friends Vet Mobile and Trumann Animal Clinic at or 870-483-6275.

This Doggy Dementia Article was taken from Healthy Pets by Dr. Karen Becker.

Questions You Should Ask Your Breeder

August 22, 2016 | Filed under: Uncategorized — Trumann Staff @ 2:22 pm

Questions you should ask your breeder before purchasing a Pet.
By Dr. Norette L. Underwood

Here is a list of questions to consider asking the breeder:
1. Are the puppies’ or kittens’ parents “certified”? This means that certain breeds are often at risk for genetic conditions such as hip problems, heart problems and eye problems. Most of these diseases are inherited, meaning the disease is passed from parent to puppy. Many breeders will have their cats or dogs evaluated and tested for that disease and ultimately “certified” by a veterinary specialist to be disease-free. Know about the breed and if there are any common genetic problems

2. Know how big the parents are to make sure your pup or kitten will grow to the size you want.

3. Ask to meet the pups’ or kittens’ parents. Notice if they appear to be in good health and evaluate their overall temperament. Are they shy, aggressive, or well adjusted?

4. How have they socialized the critters? Have they been around other animals? Other people? Socialization is critical in puppies and kittens 6 – 16 weeks old.

5. What vaccinations has the pup or kitten received and when? When will they be due for their next vaccination?

6. Have the kittens or puppies been dewormed? Most puppies and kittens are born with worms and routine deworming is recommended.

7. Has the puppy or kitten been examined by a veterinarian and declared healthy? If not, what problems have they had? Have they been on any medications?

8. Have any of the littermates been sick? If so, what were the signs, the diagnosis and treatment?

9. What is their guarantee? If the pup or kitten is found to have a severe illness, what will they do? This is a difficult topic but one that is a lot easier to cover up front rather than later.

10. Ask the breeder for a couple references of owners that have purchased animals within the past year. CALL them. Find out if the breeder was fair, if they were happy with their purchase, and how any problems were handled.

11. Does your breeder require a breeder’s contract? If so, what is in it? Is the breeder willing to take back the puppy or kitten at any time, if you can’t keep it?

12. Limited registration. Some breeders require that you spay or neuter your dog or cat by a certain age.

13. Ask if the breeder has information about the breed line. For example, ask how long the animals have lived and what they have died from. Write it down. This may be important for monitoring your pet, as he gets older.

14. What is the breeder currently feeding? It is ideal to continue feeding the same food for the first few days at home to minimize the risk of gastrointestinal disturbances. Ask your veterinarian about proper feeding of your new pup or kitten.

15. Ask the breeder if he will supply a health certificate for the puppy or kitten, issued by his veterinarian. Some states require also a certificate of sale.

16. Does the breeder belong to a breed club? Ask for references.

Get your questions answered and feel very comfortable with your new family member. A reputable breeder will also have many questions for you about how you plan to care for your new addition and whether this is the right choice for you and your family.

If you have questions about puppy or kitten selection please contact Dr. Norette L. Underwood of Best Friends Vet Mobile Service and Trumann Animal Clinic at

More information about pets may be found on Much of the information in this article came from their website.

Mushroom Toxicity

August 15, 2016 | Filed under: Uncategorized — Trumann Staff @ 6:43 pm

Pet Talk
By Dr. Norette L. Underwood

Mushroom Poisoning in Dogs

With all the rain we have had for the past several weeks, many mushrooms have popped up. Driving to work I see many yards with beautiful white mushrooms growing. I go out every morning and check my dog pen for mushrooms and pull them up if I can. This is assurance that my dogs will not be victims of mushrooms. Below are tips about mushroom poisoning and how to protect your pet.

1. Onset of mushroom toxicity is 30 minutes to 6 hours after ingesting mushrooms.

2. Signs are not specific to mushroom toxicity. Other differential diagnosis are: ethylene glycol (antifreeze), head injury, low blood glucose and epilepsy.

3. Acute signs are nausea, salivation, vomiting, diarrhea (sometimes bloody), dilated pupils, ataxia, tremors, muscle fasciculation, seizures, possibility of renal failure, possibility of kidney failure, coma and death.

4. Most common sign seen in may be ataxia.

5. Baseline blood work to check liver and kidney function can be done.

6. Initial treatment: induce vomiting if dog is stable (which will physically remove mushrooms from stomach), followed by activated charcoal to bind any remaining toxin in the stomach or intestines. IV fluids to help the kidneys remove toxins.

7. Supportive treatment: IV fluids and monitoring. Some dogs with severe tremors or seizures require anti-seizure medication and more intense monitoring.

8. Animals typically recover from neurological signs within 24-48 hours and some have had liver or kidney failure.

9. Keep your dog on a leash to monitor what they eat.

If you have questions about Mushroom Toxicity contact dr. Norette L. Underwood of the Trumann Animal Clinic and Best Friends Vet Mobile at

Our Pets May Be Able To Detect Disease!

August 11, 2016 | Filed under: Uncategorized — Trumann Staff @ 3:52 pm

Pet Talk

Dogs and Cats May be a Medical Doctors Best Friend, too!
By Dr. Norette L. Underwood

Dogs have extraordinary senses that rival even the fanciest medical equipment. Since ancient times dogs have alerted humans to predators. Researchers are now finding that they can also alert us to attacks within our bodies. Sense of smell in canines is said to be 1000 times more sensitive than the average human. Dogs can be trained to respond to the signature scents of human health conditions.

I have a client whose terrier, that was a drop off at our clinic, awakens her at night while she is sleeping if her blood sugar drops too low. This dog was never trained for this, he just woke her up one night. Now he does it on a regular basis. She can take the necessary measures to correct the low blood sugar before she has a medical emergency.

The Penn Vet working Dog center in Philadelphia is helping dogs develop their phenomenal talents to be service dogs for various medical conditions.

Here are some of the wonderful ways they are lending a paw:

Seizure Detection: Some dogs can tell when people with epilepsy are going to have a seizure. They will bark to alert other family members. They also can position themselves so if their human is falling to help them break their fall so as not to get injured. Cats may paw and dance on their owners to alert them.

Cancer detection: In 2012, German scientist discovered that dogs can distinguish volatile organic compounds or VOC’s specific to the breath samples of lung cancer patients. Dogs could also make a big difference in the detection of ovarian caner. Researchers at Penn Vet Center found that dogs could ID a single drop of blood from an ovarian cancer patient in about 3 seconds. Teams of nanotechnologists are trying to develop an electronic nose that doctors could use everywhere.

Diabetes Control: When blood sugar gets too high or too low dogs can detect the different VOC’s in the human’s saliva and provide warnings. Alert dogs really can change the live of a severely diabetic human.

Predicts Death: There is a cat that lived in a nursing home and when a person was nearing the end the cat would go lie on the persons bed and stay there until they died.

Migraine Relief: There is a cat that when the owner felt a migraine coming on the cat could sense it also. This kitty would try to massage the owner on her temples to help relieve the pain.

Animals are wonderful and so incredibly talented. They help many humans with their extraordinary gifts. There are many internet stories about how pets have detected medical conditions and helped their owners that are remarkable.

If you want to know more about sponsoring a hero-dog in training contact

If you have an amazing story of how your pet has helped you with an illness please contact Dr. Norette L. Underwood of Best Friends Vet Mobile and Trumann Animal Clinic at

Stinky Urine Stains

August 1, 2016 | Filed under: Uncategorized — Trumann Staff @ 8:35 pm

Pet Talk
By Dr. Norette L. Underwood

Oh those Stinky Urine Stains!

You just get home from work, sit down to chill and the smell of your pets urine tickles your nose! You look around and find that either your cat or dog has urinated on the corner of the sofa and on the rug. Here are some tips to help make urine cleanup a snap:

Get a black light. These lights help you locate where the smell is located. Pet urine will fluoresce under a black light. Be sure and check both walls and floors.

Try enzyme cleaners. They actually have ingredients that can break down the urine and destroy the odor-causing elements. Enzyme cleaners can vary in cost and how well they work. Be sure and follow the directions. Do not mix enzyme cleaners with other cleaners. This will decrease the effectiveness of the enzyme cleaner.

Try vinegar and water. Mix ½ cup white vinegar with 1½ cups of warm water. Pour this mixture over the stain. Let it sit for 5 minutes before blotting up the cleaner. Always blot do not rub. Be sure and test this mixture on a hidden area of the carpet to make sure it doesn’t change the color of the carpet. After your stain is dry, sprinkle a good amount of baking soda over the area. Let it sit on the area 24 hours, then vacuum.

Use Carbon Dioxide-based cleaner. Once you find your soiled area, mix the pellet with warm water according to the directions. Spray it on the stain and blot it up after about 15 minutes. Let the area dry naturally.

Do not use ammonia. Urine contains ammonia. So ammonia based cleaners will act like an attractant to your pet.

Don’t rely on regular carpet cleaners. These cleaners do not work against the odor-causing proteins found in urine.

Do not steam clean. This can actually cause the odor to spread.

If you have questions about getting rid of urine odor and smell, contact Dr Norette L. Underwood of Trumann Animal Clinic and Best Friends Vet Mobile Service at