Your Health: July 25, 2013 Common pet injuries - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Your Health: July 25, 2013 Common pet injuries

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Birmingham, AL -

     They are our companions, best friends, and our furry family members... our pets.
     Animal experts say you'll more than likely see some of the most common pet injuries among  dogs and cats this is the time of year.
     ABC 33/40's Linda Mays finds out the four common pet injuries and what you should do in case of a minor or serious injury.
 
     Like children, our furry family members like going outside, running, and playing and noseying around.
      But watch out... pets can encounter an injury, even while close to home.

      Dr. Jerome Williams is a small animal practitioner at Red Mountain Animal Clinic in Birmingham.
     He says, "They may get a cut, they may get a sprain or they can even get an insect bite."

     Insects.. as small as a flea.. can carry diseases and cause many problems in pets.
 
      Dr. Williams has been treating dogs and cats for 44 years.
     He says, a simple flea and tick collar can help protect your pet from this season's number one irritant... fleas.

   Dr. Williams says, "The biggest problem they can cause are allergic reactions and they can cause severe infections.   When around the head it can cause head shaking so severely that can break a blood vessel in between ear flaps and when that happens you got a huge ear."    

     If that happens to your dog or cat--get them to the vet .
      
     One major summertime danger for your animal is overheating.
     During these hot summer temperatures, Dr. Williams says make sure your pet has shelter from direct sun light and watch for overheating in your pets.

    Dr. Williams says, "They'll be moving slowly, panting excessively they can even be comatose in severe case."
    Dogs don't have sweat glands like we do.  So, they're panting to let the heat out.  So, if you see panting excessively difficulty breathing, they may  be overheating.

       Dr. Williams says, "If your pet shows signs of overheating you want to cool him down as quickly as possible and get to vet ASAP."
 
      Keep a thermometer in your pets first aid kit to check their temperature.

     Dr. Williams says, "The normal temperature for dogs and cats is 101 to 102, if your get above 104 -105 pet might be overheated."
      He says the most common cause of overheating in pets that he sees is being left in the car.

   Prepare a first aid kit to clean, treat or protect your pet from bleeding wounds, cuts or bites...especially while away from home.

      
      This L. L. Bean first aid kit is extensive  and  includes a surgical prep solution, a skin stapler, a cold pack, and a pill gun.

     Dr. Williams recommended basics are tape, gauze, tubes of antibiotic, alcohol and peroxide.     
 
     While noseying around outdoors, pets could stumble upon a snake and their probing curiosity could lead to pain.

       Dr. Williams demonstrates with Precious, the domestic cat.
        He says, "When a pet sees something like a snake or anything else they're going to be curiously inquire or they're going stick their nose there."
 
      Dr. Williams says, "Most snake bites are going to be on an extremity, going to be on the nose or paw cause that's what they're going to probe with first.  You'll see swelling  and it's going to be rapid.  Get them to your vet right away."

     Dr. Williams says, "Cat fights are another problem that leads to bites, bleeding and abscesses.  Abscesses that occur on a cats most often will be somewhere on the paw or leg area occasionally you get it up in some other areas or for some reason on the base of the tail."

     Sometimes, it's hard to tell when and where your pet has an injury.

     So, how do you know if your cat or dog has had an insect bite, a sprain, or strain.
 
     Dr. Williams says, "You'll see swelling generally. They'll be doing something to the infected area whether its biting it rubbing it or laying scooting along.  Generally, the same thing you see with people.. They'll react as it something is wrong."

        As with our family members, many times  we can tell when something  may be wrong.
        After all, seeing our pets healthy and acting like our best friends do... is what we expect.

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