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  • Skunks spray volatile compounds from their anal sacs if they feel threatened by a potential predator such as a dog. Dogs can come across a skunk in rural or urban areas but most often at dawn or dusk and in areas where skunks make their den. Avoiding these areas at these times is the best way to avoid a skunk encounter. If sprayed in the face your dog may need veterinary care, as corneal damage can occur if sprayed in the eyes, and vomiting, diarrhea, or anemia can result if sprayed in the mouth. Washing the offending oils from the dog is complicated, but there are several commercial skunk shampoos that are good for this. If these are not available a combination of hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, and dish soap can be used to help in the short term. It is important to avoid getting this solution in the eyes or mouth as the ingredients can be irritating and create more problems. Skunks may carry rabies so avoid contact between them and your dog.

  • There are over 30,000 species of spiders worldwide, and most of these spiders are venomous. Most spiders are unable to produce medically-significant envenomations, however, because of their small mouthparts that are unable to penetrate the skin. The two groups of spiders responsible for most medically-significant spider bites include the widow spiders (including the black widow spider) and the recluse spiders (including the brown recluse).

  • The suspensory ligament supports the fetlock and protects it from hyperextension (i.e., dropping too low) at exercise. The ligament begins at its attachment to the back of the upper cannon bone in both the fore and hindlimbs.

  • Bird proofing your home is a great way to help keep your bird safe and healthy. After all, your bird's cage is its house and the confines of your home represent the bird's environment.

  • A brand name medication is the first of its kind and gets to brand the name. However, there may be differences between brand name and generic drugs. Although the active ingredient must be the same as the original drug, generics may include different inactive ingredients such as preservatives or fillers.

  • Getting a purebred dog comes with some pros and cons. You know what you are getting but also run a higher risk for genetically tied health problems. Do a little research before selecting a new pup, purebred or otherwise, and remember this: whatever you name your dog, you will call him 'yours' no matter what he looks like!

  • Therapy pets are animals that visit hospitals, retirement homes, hospice centers, nursing homes and schools. Although most therapy pets are dogs, other species such as cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, and horses are good candidates. These lovable pets are well trained, have good temperaments, and are people-friendly. Plus, they have a good work ethic!

  • A vaccine is a specially-made medicine that stimulates the body to produce an immune response to a particular infection. Most vaccines are given by injection of a small volume of liquid into the muscle, although there are a few given intranasally (i.e., via the nostril) (strangles vaccine), or by mouth (e.g., polio vaccine in humans).

  • Vitamin D poisoning occurs when a dog ingests a toxic dose of vitamin D. A common source of vitamin D poisoning is when a dog accidentally ingests rodenticides containing vitamin D. Another source of vitamin D poisoning is the accidental ingestion of certain human medications.

  • Veterinary care seems expensive. Here are some of the reasons behind the costs of veterinary care, and some things that you, as a pet owner, can do to help make it affordable.