What You Should Know About Papillon’s

veterinarian papillon albuquerque

veterinarian papillon albuquerquePapillon are  popular speciality breed dog. They are popular because they are cute little toy dogs with fluffy coats and adorable little faces.

They weigh 7-10 pounds and can live up to 20 years.

Did you know that the word papillon means butterfly in French? Likely because of their wing-like ears and their spunky and fun personality, Papillon’s are great dogs.


How Friendly Are They? Incredibly! They are smart and easy to train, but they are also gentle and patient. They make great indoor dogs but are known for being a little difficult to house train.

Papillons are not known for a lot of barking and are good with cats and kids. But like any dog, they need exercise and can become aggressive if they have too much pent up energy.

Exercise Needs:

These cute little dogs have lots of energy. They need people to play with them, and taking them out of the house for a run around the park or yard is highly encouraged.


Grooming Needs:

They don’t have undercoats, which makes Papillon’s easy to groom. Their coat shed an average amount but their coat doesn’t typically mat or tangle. Regular brushing will take care of any shedding issues.

Just like any dog, you will need to brush their teeth regularly. This breed is prone to tartar build up which can lead to gum disease and tooth loss. Make sure to bring them into Albuquerque Vetco for their annual dental cleaning.


Health Problems:

These cute dogs are generally pretty healthy. But like any dog they have a few health concerns to be aware of:

  • Luxated patella (kneecap problems, generally on the hind legs)
  • Anesthesia sensitivity
  • Fontanel (soft spot or opening on the top of the skull)
  • Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) – Testing for PRA is available for papillons. The gene mutation for the condition was discovered by researchers at Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine (PDF). If you plan to obtain a papillon from a breeder, ask if this test has been performed on your potential pet or the parents. We do not offer testing at our clinic.

Once you get your Papillon, make sure to bring them into the clinic for a checkup, their annual vaccines and their microchip. You can speak to our vets about any dietary needs and health concerns you may have.

BARF is the Dog Equivalent of a Palieo Diet

BARF diet for pets

BARF diet for petsBARF stands for Biologically Appropriate Raw Food. This is a new diet trend in dog food. The idea is that you feed your dog raw meats, grains and vegetables as they would have millions of years ago. This is very similar to the idea of the Paleo Diet, which is to eat as our ancestors did before the age of metal. It is also similar to the raw food diet that many people have started doing.

This diet plan is not recommended. The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) is not on board with BARF. Citing a number of studies, the AVMA’s policy discourages feeding raw or undercooked animal proteins as they contain potentially deadly pathogens that not only can sicken your pet but also can be transmitted to humans.

If you are wanting to put your dog on BARF, please consult your veterinarian about the risks and learn the signs and symptoms of potential illness associated with this diet.

Vetco will be posting many homemade dog food recipes in the coming future, but we recommend that you thoroughly cook all foods you give to your dog.

How to use food puzzles

pet food puzzles vetco

pet food puzzles vetcoMany of our pets are fat, chubby, big-boned, have a little extra padding, “fluffy”. We love their round selves, but it is not the healthiest for them. Most pets have a fairly sedentary lifestyle, meaning they are not getting as much exercise as they should. Let’s face it, most of us don’t get as much exercise as we should. Just like us, being sedentary and having extra weight can put us at risk for health issues.

It is easier for people to address this issue, but can be hard to address it without pets. A great way to do this is with a food puzzle. These fun games engage their mind, entertain them, give them some exercise, and slows their eating. It can also help them from being bored at home which can lead to anxiety and destructive behavior.


Favorite Food Puzzles

Food puzzles can be super simple or very sophisticated. Here are some that are recommended puzzle options:

1. The Scatter Challenge: Time to make your pet work for their dinner. Take theyr food and scatter itin the grass. Let her use her nose to find it. For cats, put their food portion in multiple bowls and spread it around an area like a barn or shed. They will have to jump and climb to find the food.

2. Kong: This is a great invention. These are toys that are hollow in the middle so you can stuff them with treats or food. Your dog has to chew and tug to get the food out. Kongs are very durable and will last a long time.

3. Muffin Tins: Put bits of food in the bottom of muffin tins. Then put tennis balls over top. Your dog will have to move each ball to get to their food. This helps slow down the fast eaters.

4. Puzzle Bowls: You can buy puzzle bowls that look like labyrinths. You put the food in the labyrinth and your dog has to fish out the kibble. This is good for slowing down their eating.

There are lots of food puzzle options you can buy, and many creative ones you can make (good look on Pinterest). These puzzles keep your pet’s mind and body active. They can help them lose weight by slowing their eating and by adding a little more exercise and excitement to meal time.