What You Should Know: National Canine Lymphoma Awareness Day

National Canine Lymphoma Awareness Day is November 7th. At Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach, we like to use the opportunity to help raise awareness with dog owners about this deadly disease and the veterinary medicine advancements that have been made in treating it.

What Is Canine Lymphoma?

Lymphoma is a type of cancer that affects both dogs and humans. There are 30 different kinds of lymphoma that can affect dogs, originating in their lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell). These different varieties of lymphoma can cause four different types of canine lymphoma in dogs including:
There is no one cause of canine lymphoma. Typically, it arises as a result of both genetic and environmental factors.

Signs and Symptoms of Canine Lymphoma

The symptoms of canine lymphoma can vary significantly depending on the type of lymphoma and the organ or part of the body that is affected. Some signs and symptoms can include:
If you notice any changes in your dog’s behavior, appearance, appetite, energy, or attitude, we encourage you to schedule a checkup right away.

The Importance of Early Detection: Cancer Screening for Dogs

About 50% of dogs over age 10 develop cancer, and it’s even more common in certain breeds that have a predisposition. There used to be no course of treatment for dogs with cancer, other than to help alleviate symptoms with palliative medicine to improve quality of life. Today, however, there are treatments for several types of cancer in dogs. Early detection, however, is key to successful treatment.
In the past, most cancer was diagnosed in dogs after symptoms appeared. At this time, however, the disease is typically fairly advanced, and this makes treatment more challenging.
A new type of genomic test is available that helps to screen pets for cancer by detecting changes and markers in a pet’s DNA that might indicate the presence of cancer. These tests can indicate that a pet needs further testing for cancer – before the disease even begins to cause symptoms. With routine screening and early diagnosis, we can begin treatment incredibly early which gives pets a much better chance at overcoming cancer before it seriously affects their health and well-being.

Canine Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment in Redondo Beach

If you have a senior dog (6 years or older), we strongly encourage you to talk with your veterinarian at Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach about canine lymphoma, other types of cancer in dogs, and the possibility of screening your pet. To learn more or schedule a checkup for your dog, we welcome you to contact our office.

Join Us in Celebrating Pet Obesity Awareness Day by Learning How Weight Affects Your Pet's Health

This year, October 12th is National Pet Obesity Awareness Day. It’s a special day that’s set aside each year to recognize the seriousness of obesity in pets while helping to educate pet owners about how they can help their pets maintain a healthy weight to live long and happy lives.

How Weight Affects Your Pet's Health

Overweight and obese pets face a variety of increased health risks including:
As a result of the secondary health problems associated with overweight and obese pets, these animals typically do not live as long as pets that are kept at a healthy weight.

How to Tell If Your Pet Is Overweight

Pets are generally smaller than people, and this means it takes fewer extra pounds for them to become overweight. As a result, just a little too much daily food, too little exercise, or too many treats can quickly take a healthy pet into overweight and obese territory.
The best way to recognize when a pet is overweight is during a veterinary appointment. We can weigh your pet and provide you with a ballpark healthy weight for your pet to achieve based on their age, size, and breed.
You can also recognize an overweight pet by the shape of its physique. If a pet is at a healthy weight, its body should become more narrow in front of its hind legs; dogs and cats should not be sausage-shaped.

How to Manage Your Pet's Weight

Like managing weight in people, managing a pet’s weight typically requires a two-pronged approach that combines a better diet with increased exercise.
Our veterinarian can recommend a higher quality pet food, a weight-control pet food, or a prescription diet that can help your pet to reach a healthy weight. We can also talk with you about the best and safest way to start exercising more with your pet. It’s important to start slowly and not do too much too quickly to avoid injuring your pet.

Nutritional Counseling and Prescription Pet Food in Redondo Beach

At Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach, we’re experienced in helping pets achieve and maintain a healthy weight. We can work with you using prescription pet foods, nutritional counseling, and lifestyle advice to help your pet shed some weight and stay healthy. To learn more or schedule a nutritional counseling appointment, we welcome you to contact our office today.

We're Celebrating National Service Dog Month

For many, service dogs mean the difference between safety and danger or life and death. September is National Service Dog Month, and we’re using the opportunity to celebrate service dogs while educating our clients about service dogs, their importance, and proper service dog etiquette.

What Is a Service Dog?

According to the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), service dogs are dogs that have received special training to perform tasks to help individuals with disabilities. For example, a service dog might be trained to monitor, support, and alert seizures on behalf of a person with epilepsy or a service dog might be trained to safely lead a visually impaired person down the street or through an airport.

Can Any Dog Become a Service Dog?

Not just any dog can become a service dog. For starters, only a select few puppies enter training to become service dogs each year, and only a few of those puppies grow up to successfully complete their training and become service dogs. These puppies are specifically selected for temperament and aptitude. They then enter a rigorous training program that typically lasts for years and involves several steps and tests.

Understanding Service Dog Etiquette and Why It's So Important to Follow

Service dogs are not pets; they are working dogs. Service dogs have very important jobs to do. In fact, a person’s safety or life might depend on the service dog’s ability to stay focused and perform its job well.
For this reason, it is never appropriate or okay to pet, give treats to, interact with, or otherwise distract a service dog from the job they are doing. It’s also important to know that service dogs are legally allowed to go anywhere that their owner has permission to go. This includes restaurants, grocery stores, movies, and the hospital.

Specialized Veterinary Care for Service Dogs in Redondo Beach

Service dogs are essential to their owners, and so ensuring that they have good veterinary care is a very important step to ensuring the health, safety, and well-being of a service dog. At Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach, California, we take special care to provide highly personalized veterinary treatments to each of our patients, including service dogs. This helps ensure that each animal receives the care they specifically need when they need it most.
To learn more about service dogs or the comprehensive services available at Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach, we welcome you to contact our office today.

Why Is My Dog Scratching Itself?

Pruritus is the clinical way to refer to itching or itchy skin. When a dog is itching, scratching, licking, or biting at itself excessively, this itchiness can be an indication of an underlying issue.

5 Reasons Why Your Dog Might Be Scratching

1. Fleas

Many dogs are allergic to flea saliva. In these dogs, the bites of fleas and subsequent exposure to their saliva results in a skin condition called flea allergy dermatitis which is marked by excessive itchiness (in addition to a rash). Parasite preventatives are the best way to protect your dog from fleas. If they have already been exposed to these parasites, however, a medicated bath can do the trick.

2. Ticks

If your dog has one or more ticks on them, this can result in itching and allergic reactions – not to mention exposure to a variety of serious contagious diseases. We strongly encourage our clients to keep their pets on a solid routine of tick and flea preventatives.

3. Mange

The mite known as sarcoptic mange is a type of skin parasite that burrows into the layers of a pet’s skin. As they bite their way through the skin, they cause lots of inflammation and discomfort which can result in excessive scratching.

4. Environmental Allergies

Many pets have environmental allergies. Like in humans, these allergies can cause respiratory issues in pets. However, they more commonly result in skin issues, such as excessive itchiness. Pets might be allergic to allergens that are only around seasonally such as pollen and mold. They can also be allergic to things that are around all year like dust mites, perfumes, smoke, and household chemicals.

5. Food Allergies

In addition to environmental allergies, some pets also experience food allergies. Typically, pets with food allergies are allergic to a specific type of protein that might be present in their diets. Food allergies can cause gastrointestinal upset in pets, but they also result in dermatological issues like itchiness, rashes, hot spots, and hair loss.

Relief for Your Itchy Pet at Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach

No matter the cause of your pet’s excessive itchiness, our veterinarians at Pacific Pet Hospital of Redondo Beach can help you get to the bottom of their symptoms and provide your pet with treatments designed to relieve their itching while addressing the underlying cause. To learn more about excessive itching in pets or to schedule an appointment for your dog or cat, we welcome you to contact our office today.

Best Dog Breeds for First-Time Pet Owners

Dogs have been awarded the honor of being man’s best friend for many reasons, and if you’re thinking about becoming a first-time dog owner, then you’re in about to begin one of the best relationships of your life.
Dog ownership isn’t quite as simple and straightforward as it seems. With it, comes many responsibilities, and every dog has different genetics that lend it a unique personality and its own set of needs. Some dogs present different challenges to their owners than others. For example, some breeds tend to be stubborn, certain breeds are more active than others, and purebred dogs often have genetic predispositions to medical issues that will require special attention and care.
If you’re a prospective pet owner, considering adopting a dog, consider the following breeds for your first-time pet.

5 Great Dog Breeds for First-Time Dog Owners

1. Golden Retriever

Golden retrievers are one of the most popular breeds for families. They tend to be wonderful and gentle with children. They’re also loyal, affectionate, playful, and energetic.

2. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

These dogs have a puppy-like appearance that stays with them for life. They’re adaptable and do well with children of all ages.

3. Boxer

These dogs are instinctive protectors, and they forge strong bonds with children that will run and play alongside them.

4. Labrador Retriever

Labs are loyal and affectionate, active and playful, intelligent, and adaptable to many different situations. They also do well with children.

5. Mixed Breed Dogs

If you aren’t sure which breed is right for you, you might consider adopting a mixed breed dog from your shelter. The shelter employees can usually give you a general idea of the dog’s primary breed in addition to their temperament and information on how well they fare with other dogs, cats, children, and new people. Plus, mixed-breed dogs tend to have fewer health issues than purebreds.

New Pet Appointments at Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach

As a first-time dog owner, you’re about to step into a rewarding world of loyal companionship and fun. You’re also accepting a big responsibility in the care of your new pet. One major part of being a responsible pet owner is establishing care right away with a veterinary office to ensure your pet has all the wellness and preventative veterinary treatments necessary to lead a healthy and happy life. Additionally, our veterinarians can help you ensure your pet has the proper nutrition, training, socialization, supplies, and activities to set them up for the best possible life with you.
To schedule your pet’s first appointment, we welcome you to contact our animal hospital in Redondo Beach today.

Simple Summer Snacks You Can Make for Your Pet

Staying cool in the summer is essential to protecting pets from the dangers of heat exhaustion. While you should provide them with plenty of shade, fresh drinking water, and shelter from the heat, you can also offer them cool, homemade treats to provide a chill from the inside.

Avoid Poisonous Ingredients

Before you start creating fun concoctions for your pet, be sure to avoid foods that are toxic to pets. Some common ingredients that are safe for humans, but toxic to pets include:
Be sure to check the labels on your ingredients – especially, xylitol – when making treats for your pets.
When in doubt, you can always just plop a few ice cubes in your pet’s water bowl to encourage them to stay hydrated.

4 Summer Treat Recipies for Your Pets

Remember that all pet treats – even homemade ones – are best enjoyed in moderation!

1. Peanut Butter Fruit Pops

Blend a cup of washed berries (strawberries and/or blueberries) with 1/4 cup of water. Divide fruit puree into an icecube tray and a small dab of peanut butter to each square. Freeze.

2. Fruit and Yogurt Pops

Wash and dice one cup of fruit (no grapes!) into small pieces. Place pieces in an icecube tray and top with plain, Greek yogurt. Freeze.

3. Frozen Banana Bites

Blend 1 1/2 cups of watermelon with 1 cup of pineapple. Slice one banana and place segments into an icecube tray. Fill squares with the prepared fruit puree and freeze.

4. Brothsicles

If you are short on time, this is a quick and easy treat you can make that your pet will absolutely love. Simply grab an empty icecube tray or other mold and fill each section almost to the top with low-sodium chicken or beef broth. Freeze and let your pet enjoy the cubes on their own or add a few to their water bowl.

Learn More About Having a Safe and Fun Summer With Your Pet!

To learn more about how you can keep your pet healthy, happy, and safe this summer, we welcome you to schedule a wellness and preventative care appointment with our veterinarian at Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach.
We’ll ensure your pet’s vaccinations are current, talk with you about microchipping your pet, and help you choose the best parasite protection for all the pets in your home.

How to Introduce a New Cat into Your Household

June is the height of kitten season, and it’s officially Adopt-a-Cat Month which means there will be lots of happy cats making their way into new households throughout the summer.
Whenever you choose to adopt a cat or kitten, it’s extremely important to remember that first impressions are a big deal in the world of felines. So, it’s best to do a little research and make a few preparations before introducing your new cat to the other cats in your household.

How to Introduce Your New Cat in Three Steps

1. Stay Separated at First

Set your new cat up in a single room with everything they need (food, water, and litter box). Let them adjust here for a few days, but feed both of your cats near the door so that they will be able to smell and hear each other during this time in isolation.
Once comfortable, switch your cats’ locations so that they can get further accustomed to the idea of being in the presence of another cat.

2. See Each Other for the First Time

If everything seems to be going okay – neither cat seems fearful and they aren’t growling or hissing at each other from under the door – then you can introduce them.
When you let your cats see each other for the first time, make sure they are separated by a barrier so that both cats will be completely safe.
Continue feeding them and playing with them as normal, but separated by a barrier that allows them to see each other.

3. Meet Face to Face

If everything is going well with the barrier and the cats seem somewhat comfortable (indifferent is a good sign) together, then you can let them meet face to face with no barrier. Be sure you’re there to supervise the interaction, so they will be safe, but give them some space to explore.

Establish Your Cat's Care at Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach

Congratulations on adopting a new cat! Now that your pet is comfortable at home, we encourage you to schedule a new pet appointment with our veterinarian at Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach. We’ll examine your pet, screen for early signs of any potential health problems, and help you give your new cat or kitten a healthy start in life!
To learn more or schedule an appointment, we welcome you to contact our pet hospital today.

How to Prepare for Flea and Tick Season

Fleas and ticks can be a problem for pets all year long in Redondo Beach, CA, but they’re especially active during the spring and summer months. So, it’s important to make sure your dog or cat is adequately protected from parasites and all the dangerous diseases they carry.

5 Tips to Prepare for Flea and Tick Season

1. Get a Safe and Effective Parasite Preventative

Flea and tick preventatives come in oral tablets, topical ointments, and collars. They’re formulated specifically for the species and size of pets and should not be mixed and matched because they can be toxic to the wrong species. If you have both dogs and cats (or small children) in your household, ask our veterinarian for a recommendation that will be safe and effective for your whole family.

2. Put Prevention on the Calendar

Most flea and tick preventatives need to be administered or applied every one to three months, depending on the formulation. Take a close look at your preventative’s instructions and mark your pet’s next application on the calendar to ensure he or

3. Clean Up Your Yard

Fleas and ticks thrive in brushy areas and also tend to congregate around bird feeders and birdbaths. Make sure your yard and other areas where your pet frequents (like an outdoor pet house) are clear of debris. It’s also smart to eliminate any standing water where mosquitoes can breed.

4. Avoid Flea and Tick Habitats

Instead of walking your dog through brushy trails or heavily wooded areas, hit the beach or stick to the sidewalks where they will be less likely to pick up parasites. If you do take a splash in the ocean, be sure to rinse all the saltwater and sand from your dog’s coat to avoid skin irritation.

5. Check Your Pet

After coming back from a romp in the grass or a hike in the woods, check your pet over for ticks. Don’t forget to check their ears, nose, tails, and between their toes.

Don't Forget to Protect Your Pets From Heartworm Disease, Too!

Flea and tick season is also mosquito season. If you have yet to safeguard your pet from heartworm disease, we strongly encourage you to schedule an appointment at Pacific Animal Hospital for a heartworm screening and the administration of an effective parasite preventative. To learn more or make an appointment for your cat or dog, contact our Redondo Beach veterinarian today.

It's National Walk Your Pet Month – Celebrate with a Healthier Pet!

It’s January, and it’s cold outside, but it’s also National Walk Your Pet Month. All of us at Pacific Animal Hospital invite you to celebrate by grabbing your pet’s harness and leash (cats are welcome, too!) and heading outside for some exercise in the brisk winter weather.

History of Walk Your Dog Month

A 2018 survey from the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention found that 56% of dogs and 60% of cats in the United States were either overweight or obese. Unfortunately, extra weight makes a big difference in a pet’s health. Being overweight puts pets at risk of health conditions such as:
Being overweight not only diminishes your pet’s quality of life but can also significantly reduce their life expectancy.
National Walk Your Pet Month was started to raise awareness about pet obesity and to encourage exercise during the season when most would rather stay inside.

More Reasons to Walk in Winter

In addition to helping pets maintain a healthy weight, walking also promotes good digestive health in pets.
Additionally, winter walks help channel your pet’s energy into a positive activity. If your pets seem to have more behavioral problems in the winter (or any time of year) it could indicate a lack of stimulation and exercise.
Last but not least, going on walks with your pets provides an opportunity for you to bond. Your pet will enjoy spending time with you and sharing the simple activity of taking a tour around the neighborhood.

Top Tips for Taking Pets on Winter Walks

1. Keep it Short and Frequent

If you don’t enjoy the cooler weather, we recommend going for shorter, more frequent walks. You and your pet will still get the same amount of exercise, but you’ll stay warmer.

2. Stay Dry

With wet fur and a cool winter breeze, a pet can quickly become too cold on a walk. Whether you’ve just given your pet a bath or you’re walking along the beach, keep a towel handy to make sure your pet’s fur is dried thoroughly before or during a walk.

Don't Forget to Schedule Your Pet's Annual Wellness Exam with Our Redondo Beach Veterinarian

In addition to getting plenty of exercise, pets need regular wellness and preventative veterinary care to stay healthy. If you haven’t done so yet, don’t forget to schedule your pet’s annual veterinary appointment for vaccine boosters, a physical examination, and parasite prevention. Contact Pacific Animal Hospital of Redondo Beach today!

5 Reasons to Adopt an Older Pet

With graying fur and quieter dispositions, senior pets are, unfortunately, often overlooked at animal shelters and pet rescue centers. While it seems most people want to start fresh with a puppy or kitten, older pets certainly have their charms. If you choose to give a senior pet a chance at living out his or her golden years in your home, you certainly won’t be disappointed.

Top 5 Reasons to Adopt a Super-Special Senior Pet

1. They’re Already Housebroken

Everyone loves cuddly kittens and playful puppies, but let’s be honest: they can be a handful to have in your home. Keeping up with, training, and cleaning up after a baby pet is basically a full-time job. Senior pets have already learned their manners. They know where and when to relieve themselves, and they know it’s best not to play tug-o-war with the drapes.

2. They Fit Into Any Family

Senior pets are much more mild-mannered than their younger counterparts. While they’re still energetic and love to play, they won’t overwhelm a family with small children or other pets living in the home.

3. They Can Still Learn New Tricks

So, maybe older cats are no more keen to learn tricks than a kitten, but old dogs still enjoy training with their owners. No matter how old your new floppy-eared friend is, she’ll still enjoy bonding with you while you teach her to shake or play hide and seek.

4. New Snuggle Buddy

Although they love to play, older pets make perfect companions because what they’ll really enjoy doing after a game of fetch is snuggling up with you on the sofa.

5. You’ll Be a Hero

Most importantly, when you choose to adopt a senior pet from the animal shelter, you’re not only rescuing a cat or dog; you’re rescuing an animal with a sweet soul that might have otherwise been overlooked. You’ll be a hero, and your new furry companion will love you with all his heart for the rest of his days.

Specialized Senior Pet Care in Redondo Beach

As pets age, there’s no reason they should slow down, too! You can make your pet’s golden years sparkle with regular wellness care, health screenings, and dietary and lifestyle adjustments designed to keep them feeling their best. At Pacific Animal Hospital, our Redondo Beach veterinarian provides individualized preventative care and geriatric wellness exams for senior cats and dogs. To schedule an appointment for your senior pet, we welcome you to contact us today.