Happy Memorial Day!

Today is the day we remember the sacrifices made by the men and women of the United States armed forces. We thank you for your service and your sacrifice. From Vetco, we hope you have a safe and happy Memorial Day.

Tips for Pet Safety on Memorial Day in Albuquerque

Pet Safety Memorial Day Albuquerque

Pet Safety Memorial Day AlbuquerqueIt’s Memorial Day weekend!  Time for parks, and grilling, and spending time with friends and family. Lets make sure that the weekend is fun and safe for the whole family, including your four legged members.

Memorial Day Pet Safety Tips

  1. Keep People Food Away from Your Dog: Your dog may love people food, but there is a lot food that is toxic to pets such as:
    1. Grapes
    2. Onions
    3. Xylitol
    4. Chocolate
    5. Raisins

      If you think your dog has gotten into your food and you notice them vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, or other behavioral changes, you will want to bring them to your Albuquerque vet immediately. If you are grilling or having a picnic, bring some food just for your dog so he doesn’t feel left out of the culinary celebration.

  2. Watch the heat: It gets hot in Albuquerque and though Memorial Day weekend is not the peak of the summer, it can still get up there in temperature. Don’t leave your dog in the car, ever. The heat can climb well over 100 degrees in your car in a matter of minutes. If you notice your dog panting a lot, bring them into a cool area or offer them some water.
  3. Use sunscreen: Did you know that dogs can burn? Yes they can! Dogs with light coats are especially vulnerable. Talk to your vet about the kind of sunscreen to put on your dog to help keep them safe from burns. If you don’t want to put sunscreen on them, make sure they have good access to shade.
  4. Microchip– Make sure your dog has his microchip. Though it is best to keep him on a leash if you are away from your house, many of us like to go on hikes or to parks over Memorial Day. If you dog get separated from you, having a microchip will help him be returned quickly.
  5. Fireworks! Many people love to light fireworks on Memorial Day Weekend. This can be really scary for your dog. If you are going to be in an area with fireworks, try to give your dog a safe space to hide out, like a quiet room or a kennel.


Above all have a safe and happy Memorial Day Weekend.



Fat Dog- How to Control Your Dog’s Weight

fat dog Albuquerque weight control

fat dog Albuquerque weight controlIs your dog fat? Fat dogs are cute. Unfortunately they are not healthy. Learning how to control your dog’s weight is an important part of pet ownership and one that most of us struggle with.

A fat dog has a significantly increased chance of having health issues or complications during anesthesia if they ever need surgery. They have lower energy, and shorter lifespans. Controlling their weight helps them feel better, be happier, and live longer.

Typically dogs gain weight because they are not getting enough activity or they are over eating or both. There are other factors that can lead to weight gain, such as:

  • Age
  • Breed – some breeds are more likely to be overweight
  • Preexisting conditions like diabetes or hypothyroidism


How Do you Know If Your Dog is Overweight?

The easiest way to asses your dog’s weight is by their ribs. You should be able to feel, but not see, their ribs. You should also be able to see a distinct waist where their body narrows behind their rib cage and before their hips when you look at them from above. From the side, their belly should look a little tucked up behind the rib cage and before their hips.

If you see no defined waist, cannot feel her ribs, or see fatty deposits by her tail or on her back, then there is a good chance your dog has a weight problem. Your vet will be able to evaluate your dog to confirm.

Keep in mind, the scale is not always the best judge. Muscle weighs more than fat, so a dog that weighs more might not be overweight. You have to evaluate the whole picture.




I Have a Fat Dog, Now What?

It is a good idea to discuss with your Albuquerque vet what kind of diet your dog should be on. It is important to feed her high quality food that is full of nutrition and not just high calorie fillers. If you want to make your own dog food, we have lots of great dog food recipes on our site.  Sometimes adjusting the type and amount of food is enough to help your dog shed those extra pounds. But you likely will also need to add in exercise.

A diet killer, just like with people, is snacking. If your dog is eating a great diet but is still not losing weight, you may want to look at their treats. Are they being given treats through out the day? Try switching from dog biscuits to carrots or only giving them one treat a day.

Don’t give them people food. Not only can a lot of people food make them sick, but our food is not nutritionally balanced for your dog and could be giving them a lot of unnecessary calories.

Exercise! Regular daily exercise is the best way to lose weight and to keep your dog healthy. Not only will she start to feel better from the exercise, but she will love spending time with you. You can take her on walks, let her run around in the park, or maybe just throw the ball in the back yard. If you have kids, have the kids play a game of chase with your dog.