Helping Idaho 4-Hers Have Happy Pets
Published on February 11, 2015 by ctannehill
This past Saturday, Broadview University-Boiseâ€™s Resident Veterinarian Dr. Tami Hinderager and three veterinary technology students: Dana Simmons, Brian Swartz, and Mista Brock conducted a dog health seminar to about twenty families with children ranging from age seven to eighteen at Expo Idahoâ€™s Premium Building.
â€śItâ€™s our 4-H District Two Spring Small Animal Project Training,â€ť said Tony Houston, a club leader. â€śWe have 4-H clubs from Adams, Canyon, Elmore, Ada, Owyhee, Payette, and Washington Counties.
Dana started off the seminar by instructing pet owners how to enrich the lives of their dogs. â€śThey are less likely to cause damage if they have something to play with,â€ť said Dana.
She discussed different types of toys and encouraged audience members to keep one near their dogâ€™s food. â€śHaving a toy near a petâ€™s food can encourage skills of chasing and catching as well as them consuming their food.â€ť
Mista talked about the importance of dental care. â€śTaking care of your petâ€™s teeth is recommended since eighty percent of diseases show up in the mouth,â€ť said Mista. â€śDaily brushing, water additives, gels, and sprays are things that you can use to prevent them.â€ť
Using her dog, Killian, she illustrated how to brush a dogâ€™s teeth. â€śNever use human toothpaste,â€ť said Mista. â€śFluoride has a toxicity, and the toothpaste that you put in your petâ€™s mouth will be swallowed. Use animal paste; thereâ€™s a dozen different flavors. Get a trial size to see which one your dog likes.â€ť
Killian was also used by Dr. Hinderager to demonstrate how a veterinarian would exam the 4-Hersâ€™ pets at an annual exam. â€śA dog not seen by a vet in one year is like a human not seen by a doctor in ten years,â€ť she said. â€śBut, you do not need to bring in your dog more than once a year if it is healthy.â€ť
Brian highlighted another way that the 4-Hers could keep themselves and their pets healthy. â€śParasites are nasty but easy to prevent by doing what I call the Four Ps â€“ Pick up Petâ€™s Poop Properly,â€ť he said. â€śLeaving poop on the ground can give parasites time to go off the poop and go into your garden or grass.â€ť
Exercise was other thing that Dr. Hinderager recommended. â€śThe goal is to keep dog around as long as possible.
â€śIt is important to keep dog healthy and well exercised,â€ť she said. â€śLots of exercise keeps your dog focused on you, and this is important when doing 4-H shows at the fair.â€ť
Mista added, â€śA healthy pet is generally a happy pet.â€ť