Top 5 IPhone Apps For Pet Owners

bandai-smartpet-iphone-pet-dog-2For many people, a household pet is more than a companion; it’s a member of the family. Thus, people assume the same responsibilities with their pets they would when dealing with any close friend or family member. Owners monitor their pet’s health by taking it to the vet, and they oversee the animal’s diet and ensure it is receiving the proper amount of nutrition. These are hefty responsibilities, and like many things in modern life, technology can be a useful tool.

Take the mobile revolution and rise in popularity of mobile apps, for example. There are countless subsets of mobile apps geared for all types of purposes, including caring for a pet. There are so many of these options, in point of fact, that it becomes necessary to whittle down the list to only the cream of the crop.

So with that in mind, here are some of the best iPhone apps for pet owners.

Dog Whistle – free

Who would have thought the iPhone would turn out to be a capable dog trainer? But with Dog Whistle, that’s exactly the role the handheld assumes. This straightforward app provides a digital dog whistle and the user selects the appropriate frequency from a number of options. The user then simply presses the “Play” button and the training can commence.

PetsBook — $0.99

Monitoring the health of a pet is a big responsibility, which is way many users could use a helping hand. With PetsBook, pet owners can keep track of vet appointments, vaccinations and records all through an sleek interface. Not only that, but users can upload photos of their pet, create profiles and write stories next to the photo about their favorite four-legged friend. Pet owners can even make vet appointments directly through the app.

iKibble — $0.99

Those who want to give their pet food that provides the utmost in nutrition would do well to install this app on their iPhone. iKibble is a comprehensive database of pet food that allows user to search by different categories, including pet type. This app even provides detailed nutritional and product info for those pets that have special dietary requirements. It can even provide a list of tasty treats for those pets that have been particularly “good boys.”

Pet First Aid — $3.99

It’s never fun dealing with a pet’s health concerns, but with Pet First Aid, owners get comprehensive info in the form of detailed tutorials and video illustrations that guide regarding how to administer first aid to a pet. The app covers everything from common injuries to giving meds to even performing CPR.

My Pets – Ask the Vets — $19.99

Those concerned with their pet’s health and who would like direct access to real-world advice from actual vets should find this app very helpful. It does have a hefty price tag, but it’s a small price to pay for being able to put to rest any serious health concerns regarding a pet the moment those concerns present themselves.

In the world of mobile apps, there are new options available seemingly every day. And indeed, there will likely be more pet-based apps on the market in the near future. Regardless, these options won’t lose their relevancy anytime soon and should provide pet owners with all the assistance they need regarding their smaller, less human members of the family.


Scott Johnson is a tech blogger who writes on behalf of companies such as Protectyourbubble.com smartphone insurer, a popular brand who insures gadgets that people can’t live without.

It’s Raw! Is the Raw Pet Food Diet Really Worth the Cost?

Raw Pet FoodThe raw food diet is a big trend in weight loss and healthy living in people. That diet is now being brought over to our pet community. This is bringing up a lot of discussion on the benefits of feeding our pets raw pet food.

The Argument

The arguments in support of the diets claim that it is overall a healthier way for your dog to live. The food is more natural, ie. organic. It leads to healthier weight, shinier coats, fewer skin problems, fewer allergies, fewer ear infections, less plaque and tartar on teeth, and a longer living pet.

Feeding your pet raw pet food leads to fewer trips to the vet, especially later in life, and promotes a happier more natural dog. Natural meaning they are closer to nature and their ancestral roots.

The Counter Argument

Cost. This is the biggest argument against raw pet food. The cost of the food is sometimes 10x more than standard pet food. The supporters of the diet are not primarily suggesting you make your own raw pet food, rather they are selling raw pet food in pet supply stores. Their pet food has a larger diversity in ingredients including duck, lamb and goats milk.

Of course, switching to high quality dry dog food will also result in less plaque and tarter. Quality pet food overall will lead to fewer skin problems, allergies, ear infections and promote longevity. Will one result in more of these things? That is yet to be seen.

The diet has not been around long enough to conclusively say that it leads to fewer trips to the vet or that it has long term health benefits. What has been shown is that their is a significantly higher presence of E-Coli and Salmonella in raw pet food.

The argument that your pet lives longer on raw food is being countered by the fact that wolves, who only live on a raw food diet, only live an average of 6 years.

Ultimately the raw pet food diet is a costly alternative to a traditional dog food diet. Will it lead to a healthier dog? Maybe, but the jury is still out.

My Cat Has the Runs! Will Antibiotics Help Feline Diarrhea?

Cat DiarrheaNot all types of diarrhea are responsive to antibiotics.  Some are and some are not and it is not known why which is which. It is speculated that responsive diarrhea is because there is a bacterial overgrowth in the intestines. However, many vets are still reluctant to prescribe antibiotics as a treatment.

Why would there be a bacterial overgrowth?  The current theories as to its cause focus on the possibility of immune dysregulation possibly associated with abnormal CD4+ T cells (immune cells), IgA plasma cells (antibodies), and cytokine (a chemical messenger) expression.

Symptoms and Types

  • Small bowel diarrhea
  • Lack of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Weight loss
  • Large amounts of diarrhea
  • Large bowel diarrhea
  • Straining to defecate
  • Blood in the diarrhea
  • Increased amount of defecation
  • Increased intestinal sounds
  • Gas

Causes

Unknown for sure but these bacteria are suspected:

  • Clostridium perfringens
  • Escherichia coli
  • Lawsonia intracellularis

Diagnosis

In order to diagnose you will need to give a full history of your cats health, the start of the symptoms and anything that may have preceded the condition. A series of diagnostic tests will be performed, which may include a physical exam, a blood test that include a blood chemical profile, a complete blood count an electrolyte panel and a urinalysis. Your vet may also do a fecal smear to rule out a parasite infestation. X-rays may be taken to rule out physical causes of diarrhea.

In order to make sure that antibiotics are the correct treatment course, your vet will have to diagnostically rule out all other potential causes.

Treatment

In conjunction with antibiotics you vet will help you plan out a proper diet based in low-fat, highly digestible food. If your cat is having absorption issues (a decreased cobalamin level), vitamin B12 supplements may also be prescribed until levels have returned back to normal.

The diet is only necessary during the treatment, though maintaining a low-fat diet is good for your cats health overall.