Your Dog Rescue
We rescue, foster and adopt out unwanted, mistreated, neglected or abandoned dogs.

10 Steps to Canine Health and Longevity



1.                   Starting with your new puppy, establish a relationship with the veterinarian and animal hospital that will be providing their long-term health care.  Their first year is a critical time to set them up for optimal growth and a long and happy life.  Annual Wellness examinations allow for early detection of problems and better treatment outcomes.
2.                  No matter the age of your new canine friend, detention and treatments of internal and external parasites will improve their health and reduce the risks for the human family members.  Roundworms and hookworms have human health implications.  Fleas can trigger canine allergies and they can also be a source of tapeworms.  Heartworms are difficult to treat, so prevention is the key.  Timely blood tests and preventive medications will give you peace of mind.
3.                  Neuter or say your pet to assist the pet overpopulation problems and to improve their long-term health.  The risk of breast cancer and uterine disease is reduced in spayed females.  In males the risks of prostatic disease and testosterone-linked cancer are reduced.
4.                  Protect your canine friend with timely vaccinations as recommended by your veterinarian.  The type of vaccine and frequency of administration will be based on your petís age and lifestyle.
5.                  Select a diet based on your petís life stage and life style.  A recommendation from your veterinarian will ensure top nutrition without nutrient excesses.  Similar to humans, our pets will live longer if we carefully balance calorie intake with regular exercise.  Be aware of their normal food and water intake so you will know if they are unwell.
6.                  Handle and groom your pet regularly.  Check for any signs of infection with the eyes, ears or skin.  Brushing and bathing will keep the coat and fur clean and healthy.  It is also good quality time spent with your best friend.

7.                  Our pets are living longer and they need healthy teeth that will stay the course.  Dental diets clean teeth while they eat.  Dental chews help to reduce plaque and provide entertainment.  Many dogs actually enjoy having their teeth brushed and brushing will ensure that all of the teeth remain healthy.

8.                  Pet insurance is a valuable asset that will provide financial security for the difficult and stressful times when accidents or illness befall your canine friend.  Think about enrolling in a plan when your pet is young and healthy to avoid pre-existing illness exclusions.
9.                  Be aware of any hazards in your petís environment.  Chemicals, garbage, forbidden foods (like chocolate and onions), toxic plants, rat and mouse poisons and more.  View them as furry children that need to be protected.

10.              Above all keep your relationship fresh and fun.  Lifetime learning is important for all.  Participating in obedience, fly ball or agility will keep them on their toes.  Training to become a therapy dog can be fun and rewarding for all involved.



Written by Dr. M. Mason DVM

February 2011


When Jack Frost nips at your Dogís Nose


Frostbite (or in medical terms, congelatio) is the damage that extreme cold causes to skinand other tissue.  Blood vessels that are close to the skin will start to narrow when temperatures drop below 0 degrees C (32 degrees F). Blood is diverted to vital core areas of the body and this can greatly reduce blood flow to the extremities.  When this external blood flow drops below a critical level, tissues can freeze which causes severe tissue injury.  The ears, tails and paws are the most commonly affected areas, particularly if these areas are damp or wet.  Signs of frostbite include pale, gray or bluish discolouration of the skin, coldness and pain when touched, swelling, blisters or skin ulcers and blackened or dead skin.  Redness and pain can develop as tissues thaw.


It may take several days for signs of frostbite to become visible.  Tissues will turn dark blue or black and then may slough or fall off.  There can be secondary bacterial infection, which will create pus and a foul smell.  Any condition that creates reduced blood flow such as, heart disease or diabetes will increase the risk of frostbite.  If you suspect frostbite, you need to seek the advice of your veterinarian.  First aid that you can perform would include warming the whole body with warm dry towers and placing towel wrapped hot water bottles near the body.  Rubbing or massaging the area can cause more damage.  Warming and refreezing can also cause more damage, so do not warm the area unless you can keep it warm.  Warm, not hot, water soaks or compresses can be used.  Pat dry the re-warmed areas gently and keep these areas warm while transporting your pet to the veterinary hospital.  Do not give any medications without the advice of your veterinarian.


Treatment at the animal hospital will likely include pain medications and antibiotics.  Treatment for shock or hypothermia will be given if either of these is present.  In severe cases surgery may be required to amputate or surgically remove the dead tissue.  Tissue that has survived frostbite will be more susceptible to freezing due to disruption of the normal blood supply. It will be important to protect these areas in the future.  Coats and sweaters, boots and ear warmers will help to protect delicate parts in our northern climate.  With some training (and lots of treats) your pet can be acclimatized to wearing protective gear.  With the great colours and styles available now we can have some fun with it too!!!


Written by Dr. M. Mason, DVM, January 2011, Director, Your Dog Rescue

Dog Coats Available at Pet Valu, Maple Grove Plaza,
511 Maple Grove Drive
Oakville, Ontario. 
James Rothwell, Owner,   905 849-1977
James and his staff will be more than pleased to help you fit your dog with their winter outfits.  They carry a large supply of coats, sweaters and footwear.
 dog coat 2 
 dog coat 1