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The Ruff Report: Dogs and Health

Simple home remedy can add years to pet's life

A home remedy that costs practically nothing can lower a pet's risk of developing kidney, liver or heart problems, and it is so simple that almost anyone can administer it to their dog or cat.
This wondrous healing treatment is called teeth brushing.

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A book about a rescue dog
that will touch your heart

THE HUNT OF HER LIFE, is a nonfiction book about Samantha, an unwanted rescue dog who the author adopts at age 2. This beautifully designed full-color deluxe book, by longtime newspaper journalist Joseph A. Reppucci, contains more than 60 vibrant color photos of dogs to help illustrate the compelling and uplifting story of Samantha - a pretty tricolor bird dog who uses her warm personality to win people over and build a new family after being put up for adoption by a hunter because she is gun-shy and afraid to hunt. Learn how she uses her special bonding abilities with people to help her eventually make a transition from the hunting fields to family life. While reading the The Hunt of Her Life, you will travel with Samantha and the author along a trail filled with surprising twists, sudden turns, mystery and even what some call a miracle. And when the journey is finished, you may never look at people and their pets, motherhood - and perhaps even God - in the same way. The Hunt of Her Life is must reading. It will take you on a captivating journey - a trip like no other - that will touch your heart.

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Oral care is one of the most neglected areas in dog and cat health, and pet advocates are urging owners to make it part of their companion's regular health maintenance.

"Many pet owners don't place as much emphasis on dental health as compared to other aspects of their pet's well being," Brent Hinton, chief executive officer of PetFirst insurance, states in a media release. "It's just as important, though, because oral disease can lead to serious health problems for both dogs and cats."

According to the American Veterinary Dental Society, 80 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats show signs of oral disease by age 3.

Without proper care, plaque and tartar buildup can lead to periodontal disease, which affects the tissues and structures supporting the teeth. Left untreated, it can cause oral pain, dysfunction, tooth loss and damage the heart, liver and kidneys.

Symptoms of periodontal disease include yellow and brown tartar buildup along the gum line, inflamed gums and persistent bad breath. Common signs of oral disease include bad breath, a change in eating habits, pawing at the mouth and depression.

Hinton said the best preventative plan is to schedule regular teeth cleanings for pets and for pet owners to work with veterinarians to establish a dental-care regimen at home.

Another insurer, Veterinary Pet Insurance, reports in a media release that its policyholders spent more than $9.7 million in 2012 on dental conditions, the 10th most common type of claim submitted to the company in 2010. Claims received for preventive teeth cleaning care, on the other hand, only totaled $1.9 million.

In 2012, the average claim amount for pet teeth cleaning was $166. In contrast, the average claim amount for treating dental-related disease was $227.

Periodontal disease, a condition caused by residual food, bacteria and tartar that collects in the spaces between the gum and tooth (resulting in infection that can spread to the bone), accounted for the most dental claims received by VPI in 2012 - more than 22,000. Tooth infections, inclusive of cavities and abscesses, accounted for the second most common dental-related claims, totaling more than 7,700. Infections of the teeth are typically the result of untreated tooth decay, cracked or fractured teeth, or severe periodontal disease.

In a media release, Petland of Wesley Chapel, Florida, advises pet parents to regularly clean their companions' teeth. Actions owners can take to help with good dental health include:
  • Routinely inspecting your pet's teeth for signs of decay and oral disease. Bad breath, discoloration and tartar are all indications of a problem.
  • Brushing your pet's teeth daily or at least weekly. Toothpaste made for people must not be used for pets. A veterinarian can recommend proper pet-safe toothpaste.
  • Feeding your pet crunchy food. The abrasive texture of hard food can help keep teeth clean, while soft food can cling to a pet's teeth and lead to decay. Also consider crunchy treats, which help clean pet’s teeth.
Related report about dogs and oral health:
The stinking truth behind smelly dog breath

More reports about dogs and health:
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Only saps let their dogs play fetch with sticks

For pets, there's a rash of trouble in the air
Alarming rise in heartworm a threat to pets 

The flu bug can bite your dog, too
Purebred dogs needlessly suffering, report says
Dog heart medicine research results promising
Cushing's drug receives FDA approval
Paralyzing diseases of dogs, people linked
Warning issued about alternative medicine

 More reports about dogs and health

Reports about dogs and flea, tick control:
Pet deaths prompt tougher rules for flea, tick items
Use of flea, tick products a must despite EPA warning
Stop ticks from dogging - or killing - your pet
Your dog may have you sleeping with thousands of fleas

Get pets ready for invasion of blood-sucking insects

Reports about dogs and cancer:
Major breakthrough in canine cancer treatment
First-ever canine cancer drug developed
Making strides in fight against canine cancer
Worldwide effort to cure canine cancer
  • Giving pets chew toys because they help keep teeth clean and breath smelling fresh.
  • Having a veterinarian periodically clean your pet’s teeth to remove any plaque or tartar.

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Book sets signed by the author available here!

THE HUNT HER LIFE BOOK SERIES: Order your set signed by author Joseph A. Reppucci! The Original will touch your heart and the Sequel will lift your soul. *The Hunt of Her Life signed book series sets are only available to U.S. customers.

Signed Set
*The Hunt of Her Life signed book series sets are only available to U.S. customers.

Holiday discount Book Sets

THE HUNT HER LIFE BOOK SET (unsigned) is offered for a limited time each year at a special holiday discount rate of 25% off. The discount applies to orders received from November 1 through December 24.

Holiday Discount Set
*The Hunt of Her Life holiday discount sets are only available to U.S. customers.

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