Ask the vet's pets: Tooth fracture needs veterinary attention
Dear Daisy Dog: It looks like my dog, Henry, broke the tip off one of his fangs. Do I need to do anything about this?

Daisy responds: One in four of us dogs breaks a tooth during his or her lifetime. Almost half these...

Ask the vet's pets: Watch dog for signs of heat stress to prevent heat stroke
Dear Daisy Dog: I often take my dog, Gertie, to outdoor restaurants, concerts and other activities. The weather has been warm lately, and I'm wondering how I'll know if she's getting overheated. What are the signs of impending...

Ask the vet's pets: Therapeutic hyperthyroid y/d diet safe for normal cats
Dear Christopher Cat: One of my cats is hyperthyroid, and I'm thinking of treating her disease without medication, by feeding Hill's y/d, a prescription low-iodine diet. It would be easiest for me to feed all my cats the same food....

Ask the vet's pets: Renal society guides veterinarians in treating kidney disease
Dear Christopher Cat: Gertie, my 12-year-old cat, was recently diagnosed with chronic kidney disease. I'm uncertain how to proceed, because I'm getting conflicting treatment recommendations from the two veterinarians I...

Ask the Vet's Pets: Animal Help Now comes to the rescue during wildlife emergencies
Dear Cathy Cockatiel: A wild bird flew into my window and fell to the ground, alive but not moving. What should I do? How can I prevent this in the future?

Cathy responds: Place the bird somewhere safe and warm,...

Ask the Vet's Pets: Cats prefer human interaction to eating or playing with toys
Dear Christopher Cat: I have never had a pet, but I would like the companionship of one. I'm thinking about a cat, because I'm not sure I can commit to walking a dog as often as needed. However, I've heard that cats are less social than...

Ask the Vet's Pets: Grain-free diets a marketing gimmick
Dear Daisy Dog: Please tell me the truth about grain-free pet foods. A pet store employee told me they're healthier than diets with grains, but my veterinarian says they're just a marketing gimmick.


Ask the Vet's Pets: Claw management is safer, kinder than declawing
Dear Christopher Cat: I live in New York, where the state may soon outlaw declawing. My adult cats are declawed, but I recently adopted a kitten who isn't. How can I prevent her from scratching my furniture?

Ask the Vet's Pets: Porcupine quills best removed under anesthesia
Dear Daisy Dog: Dieter, my German wirehaired pointer, almost had a run-in with a porcupine while I was training him in the field. What do I do if he's ever harpooned by porcupine quills?

Daisy Responds: Rush him to...

Rats are entertaining, devoted pets
Dear Reggie Rat: My college-aged nephew just bought a pet rat, and I am appalled. I think of rats as vermin that require a trap, not pets that sit on laps. Is it safe and sane for my nephew to keep a pet rat?


Hair loss due to adrenal gland disease common in middle-aged ferrets
Dear Frank B. Ferret: Ferdinand, my 4-year-old ferret, is losing the hair on his tail. He doesn't have fleas, and he seems fine except for his hair loss. My other ferret's hair is normal. What is causing Ferdinand's hair loss?

Cats need year-round tick and flea protection
Dear Christopher Cat: Occasionally I find ticks on my indoor-outdoor cats' faces but not elsewhere on their bodies, so I assume cats remove most of their own ticks. Does this mean I don't have to apply a tick preventive?

Canine allergies can cause recurrent ear infections
Dear Daisy Dog: Lucas, our 5-year-old Labrador retriever, has seen his veterinarian many times over the past two years for gradually worsening ear infections. Why do they keep coming back?

Daisy responds:

Ask the Vets' Pets: Easter lilies cause kidney failure in cats
Dear Christopher Cat: I know some spring plants are toxic to cats. Since my cats are inquisitive, what flowers should I avoid this Easter?

Christopher responds: Don't decorate with the traditional Easter...

Diet of dry and canned food best for most cats
Dear Christopher Cat: Should we feed our cats dry food or canned food?

Christopher responds: You may want to consider both.

Many families feed only dry food, primarily because it's convenient. An...

Azalea, rhododendron, laurel and yew toxic to pets
Dear Christopher Cat: We live in the country, and our cats play outdoors in the gardens during the day. Our newest cat, Clyde, occasionally chews on the shrubs around the house, including the azaleas, rhododendrons and yews. Are...

Rescue a guinea pig or two in March
Dear Gina Guinea Pig: I come home from work to my lonely, empty apartment. I'm thinking about getting one or two guinea pigs for company. Are they better alone or in pairs? How do I care for them?

Gina responds:

Ask the Vet's Pets: Keep cat away from philodendron
Dear Christopher Cat: I want to adopt a cat from the shelter, but I have a 105-inch-long philodendron that I know is toxic to cats. How can I prevent my new cat from nibbling my philodendron?

Christopher responds:...

Ask the Vet's Pets: Plan now for pets' care before you're incapacitated
Dear Daisy Dog: My dog died recently, and I very much want to welcome a new dog into my life, but at my advanced age, I fear I will outlive the dog. What is your advice?

Daisy responds: Research shows that animal companions help...

Ask the Vet's Pets: Before ordering pet medications online, ensure pharmacy is legitimate
Dear Christopher Cat: My cats have fleas, so I ordered flea medicine online from a California pet pharmacy. Frankly, I was pleased that the online pharmacy didn't ask for a veterinarian's prescription, even though I was under the...