Nonerosive immune-mediated polyarthritis is an immune-mediated inflammatory disease of the diarthroidal joints (movable joints: shoulder, knee, etc.), which occurs in multiple joints, and in which the cartilage of the joint (articular cartilage) is not eroded away. A type III hypersensitivity reaction, which causes antibodies to be bound to an antigen, in this case joint tissue, causes this condition.
These antibody-antigen complexes are called immune complexes, and they are deposited within the synovial membrane (where the fluid that lubricates the joints is held). There, the immune complexes trigger an abnormal immune response to the joint cartilage. What this means is that, in effect, the body is fighting against itself. This leads to an inflammatory response, and complement protein activation by the tissue surrounding the cartilage, in response to the immunity displaying cells, leading to the clinical signs of arthritis.
You will need to give your veterinarian a thorough history of your dog's health leading up to the onset of symptoms. Your veterinarian will perform a thorough physical exam on your dog, taking note of signs of pain, decreased range of motion, and any lameness. A complete blood profile will be conducted, including a chemical blood profile, a complete blood count, a urinalysis, and an electrolyte panel. In dogs suspected to have lupus erythematosus, a lupus erythematosus preparation or an antinuclear antibody test can be performed. Joint fluid aspirate will be taken for lab analysis, and submitted for bacterial culture and sensitivity. A biopsy (tissue sample) of synovial tissue will also help to make a definitive diagnosis.
X-ray images can also be used as a diagnostic tool. If a nonerosive, immune-mediated polyarthritis condition is present, it will be visible on the radiograph image.
A treatment that has proven to be very effective for hip & joint pain in pets is "Canine Health" from LifeVantage.
More details can be found at simon.lifevantage.com
The anxiety and fear associated with stress affects your cat similar to the way it affects people, though cats tend to hide it well. Even worse, chronic stress "suppresses the immune response, causing a broad range of illnesses.
Here are five common signs of stress in cats to help you identify it and seek help quickly.
1. Urinating Outside the Litter Box
Your initial reaction to a "potty accident" may be to yell and scream. Don't! Cats that urinate outside the litter box are trying to tell us something. He or she may be stressed due to rearranged furniture, loud noises, an unclean litter box, or several other factors. Your cat may also have an underlying health issue causing the inappropriate urination. Consult your veterinarian or a veterinary behaviorist to help find the problem.
2. Decrease in Appetite
Cats don't go on fasts or diets like we do so it's important to consult a veterinarian if your pet suddenly loses interest in food or stops eating altogether. It could be due to stress or to an underlying health condition.
Cats are often mis-characterized as aloof animals that avoid interaction with other pets and people. This just isn't the case for most cats. In fact, constant isolation is a common sign of stress or pain. Go to your veterinarian to help identify the cause of this strange behavior.
4. Excessive Grooming
There's a difference between fastidious grooming and licking a spot raw or bald. The latter is a clear sign of distress, and one that warrants a visit to the vet.
5. Aggression Toward People or Other Animals
Aggressive actions toward animals or people can be a sign of a stressed or sick cat. Consult your veterinarian or a veterinary behaviorist before the problems get worse.
How to Help a Stressed Out Cat?If your cat’s behavior changes suddenly in any way, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian. He or she can rule out any underlying medical issues as well as make recommendations to help lower your cat's stress level. Here are some tips for helping to alleviate stress in your cat:
We've all been there -- you go into your closet, pull out your favorite pair of shoes and suddenly you notice that they've been torn to pieces. Who's to blame? The dog, of course.
Here are some guidelines on how to get a puppy or dog to stop chewing things he shouldn't:
1. Be attentive. Much like you would with a human baby, always keep an eye on your puppy to protect him from his own curiosity and lack of experience.
2. Contain the situation. If you have to leave your dog alone, whether for a long portion of the day or for only a little while (like a trip to the grocery store), make sure that he is confined in a secure place, such as in a dog crate or in an area of your house that has been set aside just for him – with child or pet proof gates to secure the area. Puppies usually begin chewing on things when they are alone and bored, often getting into trouble or suffering injury when allowed free rein to roam around an unsupervised house. The area where you confine your puppy must be free of objects that he can chew on, except for those chew toys that have been specifically chosen for their age appropriateness.
3. Leave your scent behind. If you are leaving your dog for a longer duration, rolling your dog’s favorite toy or nylon bone between your hands will give him something to remember you by. Avoid making an emotional farewell so that your puppy does not respond with anxiety (i.e., separation anxiety), which can lead to whining, barking and other destructive behaviors. Many puppy owners have also found that leaving the radio on (with calm, soothing music playing in the background) will help to calm an anxious puppy.
4. Prevention is key. You must put away all of the things your dog can get into his mouth. Even things that appear to be out of reach may be reached by a diligent dog. This includes shoes, children’s toys (especially small toys that your puppy can choke on), articles of clothing (particularly socks and undergarments) plastic bags, containers of medicine, wallets and purses; just about everything. Do not ever allow a dog to go into the bathroom unsupervised, since there are a lot of objects there that you do not want to have chewed and scattered through the house. This includes items commonly found in the wastebasket, but also rolls of toilet paper. You must also take care to store valuable objects such as jewelry in a safe place that a dog cannot reach; a closed closet, dresser drawer or cabinet is best.
5. Choose toys wisely. Many plush animals have pieces that can fall off or be chewed off, becoming a choking hazard. Only buy plush toys that have been designed with a dog's safety in mind.
6. Discipline when appropriate. Puppies need to be taught early on that they can only chew on those things that have been given to them, but before they are mentally and emotionally mature enough to understand and remember these lessons, you will need to keep everything else out of his reach.
7. Correct then divert. When you do find your dog chewing on an inappropriate object, correct him with a stern "no" and then divert his attention to the object that you have chosen as appropriate for him to chew. This object can be a nylon bone that is meat-scented, or a heavy-duty rubber toy that cannot be shredded. Nylon bones are superior in that they are durable, safe and non-damaging to the teeth. Squeaky toys, rubber toys and raw-hide bones are also favorites for dogs, but they are not as durable, and the squeaker can be chewed out and swallowed, or the rubber shredded and swallowed, both of which can be choking or intestinal hazards. If he obeys and chews on the appropriate object, praise him.
8. Do not give your dog an old shoe or old socks to chew on. You are unintentionally teaching him that it is acceptable to chew on shoes and socks, and there will come a day when one of your very favorite or very expensive shoes ends up as dog fodder. Your dog, for that matter — cannot be expected to distinguish which shoes are the good ones and which ones are for him.
9. Create "real life" scenarios. As your puppy matures, tempt him by scattering a few different objects on the floor, including his nylon bone. The purpose of this is to teach him to ignore the objects that are forbidden to him. While we still advise not leaving objects lying around, it is bound to happen eventually, and training your puppy — as he reaches the mature age to remember and obey his lessons — will ensure his safety (and the safety of your possessions). Let your puppy lie down and pretend that you are busy doing something when all the while you are keeping an eye on him. When you see him begin to take a forbidden object into his mouth, reprimand him with a firm (not loud) "No!" and give him the nylon bone. Repeating this type of exercise will teach him not to chew on other objects except the bone when you are with him. As it becomes clear that he is learning the lesson, you can try leaving the room for a short while (less than 30 seconds). Immediately return so that you can catch him if he takes a forbidden object into his mouth and immediately reprimand him, again giving him his nylon bone to replace the object. Repeating this exercise will teach him to chew only on his nylon bone even when you are not around. Again, the best prevention is to not leave anything to chance. Pick everything up except what your dog is allowed to chew.
10. Exercise daily. Age and breed appropriate exercise every day makes it so your dog does not get bored. It also helps to keep his energy levels balanced and his metabolism at normal levels. Boredom and high energy levels are some of the most common reasons for destructive behavior.
Hope This Helps
Dogs have many different ways of expressing themselves beyond barking. Most (but not all) dogs communicate in a similar manner and these expressions can usually be easily recognized by other dogs. Some forms of communication are easy for people to understand, but some unique expressions are harder for people to comprehend without taking the time to learn about them. Dogs communicate in many ways including:
There’s no denying the benefits of including dogs and cats in your life, but as is true with all things, there are downsides.
One that is often overlooked is the possibility of catching a disease from your pet. While the chance of this occurring is quite low, it only makes sense for owners to be aware of diseases that can be passed from dogs and cats to people. Here are a few of the more common ones as described by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Cat-scratch disease is a bacterial disease that people may get after being bitten or scratched by a cat. About 40% of cats carry the bacteria at some time in their lives, although kittens younger than 1 year of age are more likely to have it. Most cats with this infection show no signs of illness.
People who are bitten or scratched by an affected cat may develop a mild infection 3-14 days later at the site of the wound. The infection may worsen and cause fever, headache, poor appetite, and exhaustion. Later, the person’s lymph nodes closest to the original scratch or bite can become swollen, tender, or painful. Seek medical attention if you believe you have cat-scratch disease.
Giardia is a parasite that causes diarrhea in animals and people. Giardia is transmitted to animals and people through food or water contaminated with stool (poop).
Symptoms for animals and people include diarrhea, greasy stools, and dehydration. People can also have abdominal cramps, nausea, and vomiting. Symptoms can last 1-2 weeks.
Dog and cat hookworms are tiny worms that can spread through contact with contaminated soil or sand. Pets can also become infected with hookworms through accidentally ingesting the parasite from the environment or through their mother’s milk or colostrum. Hookworm infections in pets can cause anemia, diarrhea, and weight loss. Severe infections can be fatal.
People become infected with hookworms while walking barefoot, kneeling, or sitting on ground contaminated with stool of infected animals. Hookworm larvae enter the top layers of skin and cause an itchy reaction called cutaneous larva migrans. A red squiggly line may appear where the larvae have migrated under the skin. Symptoms usually resolve without medical treatment in 4-6 weeks.
Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease of people and animals that is transmitted through contaminated water and urine or other body fluids from an infected animal. It is difficult to detect early stages of leptospirosis in animals, but the disease can lead to kidney and liver failure if left untreated.
People who become infected with leptospirosis might not have any signs of the disease. Others will have nonspecific flu-like signs within 2-7 days after exposure. These symptoms usually resolve without medical treatment, but can reappear and lead to more severe disease.
MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus)
Staphylococcus aureus is a common type of bacteria that is normally found on the skin of people and animals. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is the same bacterium that has become resistant to some antibiotics. Dogs, cats and other animals often can carry MRSA without being sick, but MRSA can cause a variety of infections, including of the skin, respiratory tract, and urinary tract.
MRSA can be transmitted back and forth between people and animals through direct contact. In people, MRSA most often causes skin infections that can range from mild to severe. If left untreated, MRSA can spread to the bloodstream or lungs and cause life-threatening infections.
Ringworm is a condition caused by a fungus that can infect skin, hair, and nails of both people and animals. Ringworm is passed from animals to people through direct contact with an infected animal's skin or hair. Cats and dogs infected with ringworm typically have small areas of hair loss and may have scaly or crusty skin; but some pets carrying ringworm have no signs of infection at all. Young animals are most commonly affected.
Ringworm infections in people can appear on almost any area of the body. These infections are usually itchy. Redness, scaling, cracking of the skin, or a ring-shaped rash may occur. If the infection involves the scalp or beard, hair may fall out. Infected nails become discolored or thick and may possibly crumble.
Toxocara roundworms cause a parasitic disease known as toxocariasis. Cats, dogs, and people can become infected by swallowing roundworm eggs from the environment. Pets can also become infected as youngsters through their mother’s milk or while in utero. Infected puppies and kittens usually do not seem very sick. Those that do may have mild diarrhea, dehydration, rough coat, and a pot-bellied appearance.
In people, children are most often affected with roundworm.
There are two forms of the disease in people: ocular larva migrans and visceral larva migrans. Ocular larva migrans happens when the larvae invade the retina (tissue in the eye) and cause inflammation, scarring, and possibly blindness. Visceral larva migrans occurs when the larvae invade parts of the body, such as the liver, lung, or central nervous system.
Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic disease that can spread to people and animals through contaminated soil, water, or meat, and from contact with stool from an infected cat. Cats are the main source of infection to other animals but rarely appear sick.
Most healthy people who become infected with Toxoplasma show no signs or symptoms. However, pregnant women and people who have weakened immune systems may be at risk for serious health complications.
Ever wonder why cats behave like they do? Bust the myths and find out why.
Did you know cats played a large role in ancient Egyptian society? They even became deities; Mafdet (goddess of justice) and Bast (goddess of war). While these creatures aren't placed on such a high pedestal today, there is still an aura of mystery and a particular presence cat carry. Even their behavior is quite dissimilar to that other favorite domestic pet, the dog. With a little understanding of the feline "way," you’ll discover their behavior isn't so strange after all.
For instance, you might not have known that feral (wild) cats have their own territories and are responsible for their own food, water and safety. This autonomy and feeling of self-preservation is also seen in domesticated cats to a certain degree. Some people may even call cats aloof or unfriendly because of this.
However, for all the times you find your cat alone doing "cat things" (perhaps plotting to kill that evil dust bunny lurking in the corner), there are plenty of occasions when your cat is quite social.
Let's take a cat's sense of affection, for example. Cats know when their owner is coming home and are often found waiting patiently by the front door when the owner arrives. Most cats also love to jump on laps and be cuddled and stroked, while others are content to sit nearby their human companion. And some cats are even high-tech, loving to help with any computer work — though this usually consists on sitting on the keyboard or walking across it.
What of their territorial instinct? Yes, we all know how cats will spray an area in order to "mark" it. (This is obviously a no-no anywhere in your home, and we're not condoning this.) But did you know cats rub their heads against objects and humans alike? Similar to lifting a leg and sraying, rubbing their scent on things is another way of marking property.
Now, if you happen to have someone over who's not into cats — I know it sounds crazy, but there are those kinds of people around — you might suggest that they allow themselves to be rubbed by the cat. Brushing the cat away will only annoy it, and make your guest a kitty foe.
What of their laziness? Cats are often labeled "lazy" because they like to sleep for about sixteen hours a day. But they are almost never completely asleep during that time. Make a sudden noise or movement, and you’ll find your cat alert and with its eyes open, watching you. Big cats in the wild sleep the same way. The cat is a natural hunter that needs to conserve energy for quick, intense movements in order to catch prey.
How about ankle-level attacks? If you’ve ever found yourself walking through a room (especially past a table), and suddenly — pow! your ankle has been captured, don't worry, your cat is not angry or even maladjusted, it is merely playing with you. In fact, you may notice that there wasn't much nail in that swipe, your cat isn't out to hurt you. Cats are just playful creatures that love to hone their hunting skills, and you have just become a passing target. Lucky you. Thankfully, you can avoid any future assaults by distracting kitty with some feathers or other "chase and catch" type toys. Play with your cat for a little while. Your cat will absolutely love you for it. And more importantly, you'll have fever "love" scratches.
So, we've busted some myths. Strange cat behavior isn’t that strange after all. It is merely natural instincts coming through. And just because we don't put cats on pedestals anymore doesn't mean they don't like it up there. Indeed, you'll find that the higher the pedestal, the happier your cat will be. Just make sure your cat has something to play with up there — or watch out!