Bless you, Bad Rap!! I wish there were more resour…

Bless you, Bad Rap!! I wish there were more resources like you out there to help people be responsible with their pets.

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Pet Food Recall: Jones Natural Chews Co Recalls Woofers Dog Treats

The lastest recall is Woofers dog treats from Jones Natural Chews Co.  The recall is due to the possible risk of salmonella.  There are 245 boxes of the dog treats being recalled.

The statement from Jones can be found here.  The products from the statement are listed below:

Jones Natural Chews Co Woofers (beef patties) bulk 50 count box, Item UPC 741956008169, Lot 2962GPS-Best By 10/22/15 and Lot 2892PAL-Best By 10/15/15

***Woofers in bulk 50 count box may be sold individually***

Jones Natural Chews Co Woofers (beef patties) 1 pack shrink-wrap, 50 count box, Item UPC 741956008657, Lot 3102, Best By 11/05/15.

Jones Natural Chews Co Woofers (beef patties) 1 pack shrink-wrap, 50 count box, Item UPC 741956008183, Lot 2892BF-Best By 10/15/15, Lot 2962PWV-Best By 10/22/15, Lot 2962ASC-Best By 10/22/15, and Lot 3032ASL-Best By 10/29/15.

Jones Natural Chews Co Woofers (beef patties) 2pack shrink-wrap, 25ct box, item UPC 741956008190, Lot 2962ASC-Best By 10/22/15 and Lot 3032ASL-Best By 10/29/15.

PetsitUSA Blog

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You know, I can’t tell you how many times I had to sit in an exam room with a weeping child, explaining to them over the listless puppy in front of them that I was so sorry, the test came back for Salmonella and the prognosis was grim. Wait, that’s parvo.

Salmonella, while demonized in the media to a bogeyman of epic proportions, is mostly known as an irritating member of the Diarrhea Duo, a pest more than a demon scourge of canines. And yet, with every recall, the anger, the indignation, and the fear rolls in, predictable as a rush on flu vaccines after the first case of the winter.

I get it. Trust me, I get it. The 2007 melamine recall put us all on edge- and rightly so, I might add. That was a terrible event, one I hope never to see happen again in my career.

There are several factors that went into that event that made it extra awful, mainly the scope, the deception on behalf of the suppliers, and the number of deaths assumed to have resulted from the whole debacle. There is no excuse for deliberately adulterated ingredients to make their way into the pet food supply, ever. And now here we are, with yet another Salmonella recall- on a food I’m currently feeding Brody. And am I indignant? Disappointed? Filled with righteous fury?

Salmonella typhimurium, courtesy NIH.

No, not really. But in order to get that you have to understand the ubiquitous nature of Salmonella.

Salmonella: The scourge of veterinary medicine (except when it isn’t)

Let’s put it this way: if dogs were a preschool, Salmonella would be that runny nose snotty kid always wiping their fingers on everything. It’s just kind of there, it’s not there on purpose, but it just kind of happens, and you manage it the best you can. You can peruse pubmed and the various studies on the topic if you want- in fact, NC State is doing research on the very topic of the prevalence of Salmonella in dogs as we speak- the older papers are all over the place, finding 11% to 66% incidence in dogs. A 2002 Canadian paper on asymptomatic dogs fed the BARF diet found 30% of those dogs tested positive for Salmonella, and, as BARF enthusiasts themselves regularly point out, they are not, as far as anyone can tell, keeling over dead of Salmonellosis in any discernible numbers. This despite the fact that in this study, 80% of their diet did test positive for the bacterium.

So why does the CDC hunt it down like Snape chasing Harry through the halls of Hogwarts? Are they that concerned about the comfort and well being of our canine companions? (hint: no.)

They care because people get Salmonella. The final tally from last year’s Diamond incident was that 49 people were sickened, 10 hospitalized, none dead. The CDC stats, when they have them available, average out to about 35 or so people a year getting documented cases of Salmonella from pet food. 35 out of the 42,000 reported cases a year. That’s 0.08% of the documented cases being due to pet food, for those keeping score. The actual number of Salmonella cases, most of which are never reported (how many of us had one of those “OMG I ate bad Taco Bell” mornings and never reported it?) is estimated to be about 29 times higher. Death rate from acute Salmonellosis? Less than 1%, actually quite a bit lower than even that unless you are very young ,very old, or immunocompromised.

I know you all love infographics. I’m too cheap to hire a graphic designer, but nonetheless I made you all a pie chart because I know everyone loves a good pie chart.

We swim in a sea of Salmonella

We know, we know and this is well documented, that raw meat is a common source of Salmonella. That is why my mother freaked out, loudly and with great horror, if there was any chicken juice on the counter not promptly blown into oblivion with bleach. “SALMONELLA!” she would scream, wielding Lysol like Excalibur against the foe. But as we’ve seen with a recall from The Honest Kitchen earlier this year, it’s not just meat that can be the problem- their recall was actually due to a batch of parsley that tested positive. It’s in the raw ingredients for pet food and the raw ingredients for our own foods. Peanut butter. eggs. chicken. milk.

So what’s the deal? If you want to make a list of the affected brands in the last 5 years, it goes far and wide. Almost everyone has been affected at some point or another. Is it that every single manufacturer, regardless of their commitment to quality control or lack thereof, is just gross and negligent? In certain cases, like the Diamond recall, where there was a well documented failure to maintain adequate facility standards at the manufacturing plant over several months, I would say yes- they screwed up royally.

But in most cases? I would argue that many manufacturers- at least the ones who do it all in house and are transparent enough to invite journalists in – follow very high levels of quality assurance. The testing process in a plant following adequate GMPS is thorough; the production process is extremely effective at getting rid of pathogens during the cooking process. And even with that, even with everything done properly, sometimes Salmonella happens, just like sometimes you get an infection post-op even when your surgeon followed meticulous sterile procedures.

In yesterday’s Natura case, we are talking about one single sample that tested positive.

So now what?

If you’re looking for an excuse to stop feeding commercial food and this seems like a convenient one, go forth with my blessing. Please find someone who knows that they are talking about (I love the nutritionists at BalanceIt) to help guide you.

If you, like the vast majority of the pet owning population including myself, have decided to take your chances with this vile scourge, this baleful bacterium, I give you this long and complicated process to minimize your risks of contracting Salmonella:

1. Wash your hands after touching pet food.

2. Don’t buy your kid a live chick for Easter.

Source: CDC (

3. Avoid pot pie, mind the beef, don’t eat cookie dough with raw eggs (screw that, I’ll take my chances), don’t be old.

P.S. I thought this goes without saying, but just in case there was some ambiguity: good lord, if your food lot gets recalled, yes, do return it. That’s what recalls are for.

The end!


Disclaimer: I’m not a CDC public health expert, nor do I pretend to have the vast reservoirs of knowledge that many food safety pros do. That being said, I’m going out to dinner tonight with my good buddy, veterinarian, MPH and CDC employee Dr. Carrie, so I can pass on any questions to her you might have. 

Pawcurious: With Pet Lifestyle Expert and Veterinarian Dr. V.

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Pet Q&A: How should I treat my Pit bull mix with chronic demodectic mange?

Pet Q&A: How should I treat my Pit bull mix with chronic demodectic mange?
Demodicosis or demodectic mange occurs when there are excessive numbers of demodex canis mites in the hair follicles. The mites are generally obtained shortly after birth from the mother. In most dogs the number of mites is very small and no clinical

Keeping an eye on mange
Mange is a skin disease caused by parasitic mites that animals carry with them their entire lives, but only cause a problem if the dog is subject to high stress, or if the dog's immune system is compromised for some reason. Dr. Christine Miles is the
Read more on Mint Hill Times

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Plants That are Harmful or Can Injure Your Dog

If you’re a dog lover, thoughts of long evening strolls and outdoor recreation with your dog fill your head. In fact, you may have already started to create new fond memories. Given that, the last thing you want on one of your nature walks is for your canine companion to be sidelined by an injury. Unfortunately, many pet parents don’t realize until it’s too late that there are menacing toxins lurking in the plants of both cultivated and wild landscapes. Plants that you are used to seeing in public parks, your neighborhood and perhaps even in your own backyard can lead to devastating effects. First up are four plants commonly used in landscaping that are actually toxic to canines.

Azalea – Rhododendron Species
A typical choice for landscapers due to its hardiness and lovely flowers, these unassuming ornamentals contain a toxin which can be lethal, even in small amounts. Both the plant’s leaves and nectar are known to be harmful if eaten or chewed by your dog, and can cause drooling (often a symptom of nausea), vomiting, weakness and collapse. If greater amounts of its toxins are ingested, it can lead to severe poisoning, possible coma and even death.

Widely recognized as one of the most poisonous plants in the world, even minute quantities of Oleander can trigger a fatal response. Unlike the Azalea, every part of the Oleander is toxic, from flowers to roots. If dogs should chew on any part of this plant, they could suffer varying degrees of illness, including upset stomach, abnormal heart functioning and possibly even death. Beware of the sap, which can irritate the skin and eyes, as well as the leaves, which retain their toxicity even when dried out.

Sago Palm
Most commonly used in planned landscapes where climates tend to be hot and dry, Sago Palms are nevertheless popular all over the U.S. While the whole plant contains harmful chemicals, it’s the seeds that contain the highest levels of toxins. Estimates currently put the percentage of animals that die after eating the seeds of the plant as high as three out of four. The incidence of Sago Palm poisoning in dogs and cats has risen 200% in the past few years, although dogs seem to enjoy the flavor of the plant and the seeds more than cats. Ingestion of Sago Palm can cause vomiting, diarrhea, liver failure and seizures.

Chrysanthemums are popular ornamentals blooming late in the summer and early in the fall. While beautiful, their flowers contain a natural insecticide. If a canine chews on the Chrysanthemum blooms, the insecticide can cause excessive drooling, vomiting and diarrhea.

If your furry one is exposed to any of these toxic plants, please contact your veterinarian immediately. As is often the case in toxins and poisons, the sooner your pet receives treatment, the less likely they are to experience dramatic, and sometimes fatal, reactions.

And now here is a common weed that can cause a great deal of grief for your pets.

Weeds that resemble the tail of a fox, Foxtails are considered a widespread nuisance in most states, especially west of the Mississippi. Prevalent from late spring to early fall, they become more dangerous in late summer when their seeds dry. When the seeds are released from their pods, they are covered in barbs like little fish hooks, making them potentially very dangerous to your dog. If she merely brushes up against the Foxtail plant, the seeds can become snagged in her coat. Worse, the seeds can pierce the skin, or even be inhaled!

As a result, Foxtail seeds can become lodged between a dog’s toes, in their ears or armpits; they can be inhaled or swallowed and latch onto the interior walls of the nose or throat; or, they can stick to the eyes. Obviously, all of these circumstances can be very painful. Perhaps most frightening, the seeds are so small that they can be difficult to locate, and, if embedded in the skin, have been known to migrate to other areas of the body, resulting in severe infections.

If the Foxtail seed becomes infected under the skin, it may result in a visible, inflamed and painful lump. Commonly these lumps are between the toes, and are painful enough that your dog will repeatedly lick or chew the raised area. If a seed becomes lodged in your dog’s nose, she will likely sneeze, violently and over-and-over, and may even repeatedly paw at her face. If the seed latches to or in her ear, she will likely shake her head side-to-side and/or scratch incessantly at her ear. In the case where a Foxtail becomes stuck in or near the eye, you’ll likely see lots of repeated squinting, tears and redness; you may even see the foxtail poking out!

If you see any evidence of an encounter with a Foxtail, take your dog to the vet immediately. If you notice a red bump in between the toes, soak the paw in a mixture of lukewarm water and Epsom salts. This will help to ease the swelling until you can be seen by your veterinarian. Keep in mind that the longer you wait for treatment, the more difficult it is to treat an embedded Foxtail seed, so time is of the essence.

The best way to prevent Foxtail incidents is with an ounce of prevention. During hikes, keep your dog away from grassy weeds, and check her paws after walks. In addition, you should consider brushing her coat while using your hand to feel for any raised areas, checking inside the ears, in between toes, under armpits and throughout the belly and groin area. If you find a Foxtail in the coat, carefully pull or brush it out. If your dog has thick or long hair, consider getting a ‘Foxtail Clip’, a term applied to trimming away the hair between your dog’s toes. And, if you live in an area where Foxtails are common, remove them from your yard (be sure to exercise caution and carefully bag the weeds).

By using a little common sense and being aware of your surroundings, summer walks can be fun and free from environmental injuries. Then, you can get back to making some wonderful, new, summer memories together with your dog outdoors.

The Perfect Pet Food Blog

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North America has the safest and most abundant food supply in the history of the world

The Poodle (and Dog) Blog

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All “Complete and Balanced” Pet Food Isn’t Right For Every Pet

When a bag, can, or other container of pet food says complete and balanced, what does that mean?

It simply means that the mix of ingredients in he pet food has enough of the nutrients needed in the diet to prevent most diseases due to deficiencies of proteins, fats, minerals, and vitamins. Diets are tested to ensure they won’t make your pets sick.

Most dogs and cats seem to thrive on commercial pet food. However, individual dogs and cats may need a different type of diet to stay healthy, prevent disease, or treat medical issues. Dry food is the most common food purchased for pets, but not all pets can tolerate dry food and some need to eat a different type of diet. Some dogs or cats may need more oils for a dry coat, less carbohydrates to lose weight, a different meat or gluten-free diet for allergies (skin, ear, or bowel issues), more moisture (canned, homemade or raw) for the prevention or treatment of urinary crystals or stones, or holistic, homemade, or raw pet food for severe allergies, bowel issues or seizures. Most commercial dry food is geared for the average pet without health issues. These mixes of ingredients may not be healthy for a pet with allergies to wheat, obese pets, or those with urinary problems. Even raw food aficionados forget that not all dogs do well on a raw diet if they are fed a raw diet with beef or chicken, and they are allergic to a certain meat. The type of meat, the presence of grain or glutens, the amount of oils, and the percentage of moisture all can affect the health of your pet.

Where do you turn for advice? Can you ask your vet? Most veterinarians are trained to advise a different prescription diet for each medical issue. These diets may work, but may not be readily eaten by some pets. Some of the dry medical diets aren’t really much better for the pet’s health than most commercial foods. One urinary diet may help with crystals, but has wheat in it, that may cause skin problems. Prescription diets may be too expensive for some people and the pet suffers because they are offered no alternatives.

What are you supposed to do? Can you ask your vet about other types of diets that may work? How about homemade or a raw diet? Feeding canned food versus a kibble diet for weight loss? Feeding raw, meaty, bones to keep teeth clean? Most vets won’t know practical nutritional advice, because most were not trained to give it. Millions of pets are thriving on different diets, but most veterinarians are only trained to give advice on commercially “complete and balanced” diets and their prescription diets. Don’t blame your vet for not giving you alternatives like a homemade or raw diet or even simply supplementing your pet’s diet with healthy “human food”. We just weren’t trained to do that.

10 years ago, I started questioning the way we feed our pets. I had to reeducate myself and learn nutritional principles. I read books on the diet of the wolf and 100’s of labels on commercial food and raw food. I read books on feeding raw food and home cooking, as well as many books on human nutrition. As a result, I started advising my clients to feed different ingredients depending on their pets needs. For example, many purebred dogs and some cats need to avoid wheat-filled treats and food. Avoiding glutens in sensitive pets may cure ear problems, skin problems, bowel issues, and even seizures. With the success of nutritional counseling, I saw that different types of ingredients and moister food (canned, homemade, or raw), helped with weight problems or helped control medical problems like preventing urinary crystals from forming in both dogs and cats. I came to realize that our pets are individuals, and that each may need more than the common commercial kibble for optimum health. Some pets may need different ingredients in the dry food. Other pets may need to eat moister canned food, raw food, or home cooked food to be healthier, leaner, or to help with medical problems.

After my research and success, I wrote “Dog Dish Diet: Sensible Nutrition for Your Dog’s Health” in 2009. I updated a couple sections and published the second edition in 2011. Many clients wanted more slow cooking recipes that were in the book, so I published an eBook. “Feed Your Pet to Avoid the Vet” with slow cooking recipes and nutritional advice for both dogs and cats. There isn’t a day that goes by when a client or reader tells or emails me that they changed the type of food or the ingredients in the diet to help with a medical problem. I am so happy to know that I have truly helped pet owners become part of the health care team to treat or prevent chronic medical problems. I’m convinced that the right mix of ingredients may often prevent those problems or the need for medication.

If you want to treat or prevent medical problems in your pet, check out my blogs, you tube videos (, and my books, Dog Dish Diet and Feed Your Pet to Avoid the Vet .

Here’s a you tube video on “ingredients” in pet food.

Dr. Greg’s Dog Dish Diet

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Q&A: How can i stop the circulation of mites among my pets?

Question by Cookie: How can i stop the circulation of mites among my pets?
A few weeks ago my mice got mites and i cleaned out their cage and sprayed them and they all got better. Then another cage of my mice started mice and I got rid of them as well. However my cat is now showing signs of them and I am planning on taking him to the vet however how can i stop the mites once and for all?

Best answer:

Answer by Lizzy
When you notice one animal (or one group of animals) has it, you have to keep them isolated. Make sure you stay on top of cleaning everybody’s cages and be sure that you yourself are washing up in between handling them. With a cat it’s slightly more difficult to confine them, but try to keep them limited to only certain areas and make sure you are constantly cleaning and vacuuming. Also, be careful of handling the pets with mites. They can get onto your clothing and thus spread when you come in contact with the other animals.

Add your own answer in the comments!

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Puppy Cupcakes- now with video!

Shortly before we moved, I got to shoot a cooking series with the incomparable Robert Semrow of Pet World Insider. He was an awfully good sport since I made him bake for this one:

For the original post, see here:



Which reminds me I am over due for a new cooking piece, aren’t I? Now that I have a kitchen unpacked and all. Hmmm….Easter….

Pawcurious: With Pet Lifestyle Expert and Veterinarian Dr. V.

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Why You Should Hire A HVAC Miami Company

During the upcoming summer months, it is important to have the number of a quality commercial AC repair company. Anyone who lives in south Florida knows how hot in can get during the summer, and how important it is to have a properly functioning air conditioning unit. A reputable Miami HVAC company will be able [...]

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