Essential Tips for Hiking With Your Dog on National Take a Hike Day


Essential Tips for Hiking With Your Dog on National Take a Hike Day

November is National Take a Hike Day, and for dog owners, this holiday comes with a bonus – spending time outside with your pup! If you plan to celebrate National Take a Hike Day, we recommend considering the following trips before your feet and dog’s paws hit the trails.

6 Tips for Hiking With Your Dog

1. Hike at the Right Level

Like humans, pets can get injured easily if they do too much physical activity too quickly. Be sure to consider your pet’s age and physical fitness level to ensure you don’t choose a trail that’s overly challenging or too long for your pet to handle.

2. Protect Your Pet From Parasites and Contagious Diseases

In Pensacola, parasites and mosquitos are active pretty much all year round which means your pet needs continuous protection from fleas, ticks, and heartworms.

3. Pick a Dog-Friendly Area

Dogs are not allowed in all wilderness areas or on all trails. So, be sure to check that the area you plan to visit welcomes dogs before you go and risk incurring a hefty fine.

4. Be Prepared

Whenever going for a hike, it’s important to pack everything you might need and everything your pet might need too. Bring plenty of water (for you and your dog) and a collapsible bowl in addition to treats, an extra leash, and a canine first aid kit.

5. Leave No Trace

The cardinal rule of recreating in nature is to leave no trace. So, you should be ready to pack out everything you bring in, including your dog’s droppings, should nature call during your pet’s hike.

6. Make Sure Your Pet Can Be Identified

Pets are at an increased risk of running off and getting lost when they’re in an unfamiliar area with new sights, sounds, and smells that could frighten them or draw them away. Be sure your pet’s ID tags are readable and have current contact information. Better yet, make sure your pet has been microchipped before you go.

Schedule a Pre-Hike Veterinary Exam in Pensacola

If your pet is in need of a microchip, vaccinations, or parasite preventatives, we encourage you to schedule a preventative care appointment at Olive Branch Pet Hospital in Pensacola. We can talk with you about your pet and the outdoor area where you plan to recreate to ensure your pet is well-protected with the right combination of core and non-core vaccines and parasite preventatives.

How to Keep Your Cat Safe This Halloween for National Cat Day


How to Keep Your Cat Safe This Halloween for National Cat Day

October 29th is National Cat Day. This year, we’re using the opportunity to raise awareness about the dangers that Halloween can pose to cats and how you can keep your cat safe this Halloween.

5 Safety Tips for Cats on Halloween

1. Microchip Your Cat

With so many strangers coming and going from their houses, it’s common for pets to become frightened and run away on Halloween. We strongly encourage all pet owners to microchip their pets to significantly increase the odds of being reunited with a lost or stolen pet.

2. Keep Your Cat in a Quiet Room

Whether you’re having a Halloween party or simply answering the door to trick-or-treaters, your cat could become stressed and frightened by the extra commotion. Create a quiet, calm retreat in a closed room for your cat with everything they need.

3. Store Treats Safely

Excess sugar is bad for cats, and many Halloween treats also contain substances that are toxic. For example, chocolate and xylitol (a sugar-free sweetener) are both poisonous for cats.

4. Use Cat-Friendly Decorations

Half the fun of Halloween is decorating your home and yard. If you have a cat, be sure to decorate it safely. Keep all electrical cords away from your pets. Be sure that any wires (that cats could get tangled up in) are secure. Avoid using decorations and Halloween products that are toxic for cats such as fake blood and neon glow sticks.

5. Keep Costumes Fun

Not all pets enjoy playing dress up. You’ll be able to tell if your pet seems uncomfortable or unhappy in their costume. The best Halloween costumes for cats are those that do not obstruct a cat’s sight, hearing, or movement. Additionally, never leave your pet unattended while wearing a costume as they could become tangled, accidentally choke, or ingest a dangerous foreign object if they chew on any piece of it.

Cat Microchipping Appointments in Pensacola

Celebrate National Cat Day by microchipping your pet. If your cat does not yet have a microchip, then we strongly encourage you to schedule an appointment before Halloween. Our Pensacola veterinarian can talk with you about the quick and simple process and help you register your information with your cat’s new permanent identification number.
To learn more or schedule an appointment, we welcome you to contact Olive Branch Pet Hospital today.

5 Tips That Will Save You Money As a Pet Parent


5 Tips That Will Save You Money As a Pet Parent

We all love our pets, and for many of us, they are considered part of the family. In fact, according to a study by the National Pet Owners Survey in 2016, 68% of American households have at least one pet in their household. And just like our kids, and other family members, those pets sure do cost a lot of money! The average American spends $1,641 per year on their pet, not including veterinary care. Olive Branch Pet Hospital is happy to share some tips on how you can save money on your pet expenses…

Follow These 5 Steps To Save Money As A Pet Parent

We decided that these five tips could really make a difference in your home without affecting your furry pal’s lifestyle:

1. Enroll in a Wellness Plan and/or get Pet Insurance:

Pets are members of the family, and just like any other member of your family, they need insurance. Pets can get sick or injured just like people can, and veterinary bills can add up quickly. Wellness Plan coverage and Pet insurance can save you money in the long run, since it often costs less to insure your pet than it does to pay for emergency veterinary bills out of pocket.

2. Shop around for pet food:

Compare prices at different stores, and look for sales and coupons. By taking the time to compare prices at different stores, or even online, you can find the best deal on food for your pet. Not only will this save you money, but it can also help you to find the highest quality food for your pet. If you’re not sure what to look for in a pet food, talk to your veterinarian about nutritional counseling and see if they have any recommendations for your pet’s diet.. By feeding your pet a healthy diet, you can help to keep them healthy and happy.

3. Spay or neuter your pet:

There are many benefits to spaying and neutering your pet. It helps keep populations of stray animals down, which can save cities and towns money on animal control services. Additionally, spaying or neutering your pet can help reduce the cost of veterinary bills in the long run, since spayed and neutered pets are less likely to develop health problems.

4. DIY when possible:

There are many things you can do yourself to save money on pet care, from grooming them at home, to making your own dog food and chewing toys. Not only are homemade items often much cheaper than store-bought versions, but it can also be a fun bonding experience for you and your pet.

5. Do some research before you choose your new furry friend:

We understand that if you already have a furbaby, trading them in for a different one is not an option. But when choosing to adopt or purchase a new pet, think about the type of animal and/or breed they are and the cost it will take to care for them. Some pets, as well as some particular dog breeds require much more care and attention than others, which can be reflected in the amount of money you spend on them.

Pet Care At Olive Branch Pet Hospital

Although these 5 tips are great ways to help save you money on pet care, the most important way to save money as a pet parent is to ensure your pet is healthy and happy. And the best way is by bringing your pet in for routine wellness care. Wellness care saves you alot of money in the long run, as treating preventative measures and promoting healthy routines cost much less than treating a sick pet would.
At Olive Branch Pet Hospital, we provide quality care for your companion and the greatest possible results. Our experienced Veterinarians are here to assist you and your pet stay healthy! Call to talk with one of our loving employees, or Click Here to schedule an appointment!

Why Is My Pet Limping?


Why Is My Pet Limping?

Limping is a fairly common ailment in dogs. However, it is never normal. Since the musculoskeletal issues that can cause limping range from mild to very serious, it’s important to pay attention to your dog’s posture and gait to detect limping and have it examined by a veterinarian as soon as it starts.

What Causes a Dog to Limp?

There are seemingly countless issues that can cause limping in dogs. Some common reasons why dogs limp include:

What to Do If Your Dog Is Limping

If your dog is limping, you should first assess the limp and consider how long it has been going on and which limb seems to be affected. Also, pay attention to whether your dog always limps or sometimes limps and when the limping occurs (i.e. after exercise or after rest).
You should also keep a close eye on your pet for signs of additional symptoms. Although limping isn’t always an emergency, you should seek emergency veterinary attention as soon as possible, if your pet also has any of the following issues:
Even if your pet’s limp is not an emergency, we recommend scheduling a checkup to determine the underlying cause of your pet’s limp and to take action to help prevent the issue from worsening.

Diagnostics and Treatment for Limping Dogs With Our Pensacola Veterinarian

At Olive Branch Pet Hospital, we have a variety of in-house diagnostics that can help our veterinarian determine the underlying cause of your pet’s limp. Once a diagnosis has been achieved, we can work with you determine the best course of treatment to sooth your pet’s symptoms while addressing the underlying cause.
To learn more or schedule an appointment for your pet, we welcome you to contact our Pensacola veterinary hospital today.