Basic Dog Manners Class

We will be starting a Basic Dog Manners class on Thursday, 08/25/16. This is the class for you if you want your dog to have basic manners such as “sit” “down” “stay” and “come.” We also work with dogs who bark and jump up. Do you have a particular issue you want to work on with your dog? Give us a call and we can tell you more. Class will begin at 7:00PM and last about an hour at the At Home Veterinary Care Center. Call today to reserve a spot for you and your dog! 850-274-5710

AKC S.T.A.R puppy classes

At Home Veterinary Care would like to invite you to join us for our AKC S.T.A.R Puppy classes.

Our wonderful trainer, Debbie Eaglebarger, will be teaching the classes every Tuesday night from 7-8pm, starting next Tuesday. (August 16, 2016)

It is a 6 week training program where your furry family member will learn basic housetraining skills, while giving them a chance to socialize with other dogs.

The fee for the 6 week program is $100.

Debbie will administer the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy test at the end of the course. Upon passing the test, you’ll get an application to send to AKC® for enrollment in the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Program as well as an AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Medal.

Call us at 850-274-5710 or email us at appointment@athomevet.care to sign up.

We look forward to seeing you!

 

To learn more about this program, feel free to check out the AKC website:  http://www.akc.org/dog-owners/training/akc-star-puppy/

New anxiety medication available at AHVC

thunderstormFlorida has the most frequent and severe thunderstorms in the United States. In Tallahassee, there is an average of 70-80 days with thunderstorms every year; over 10 times more than California! Dogs are naturally frightened by thunder; thunder and other loud noises were a signal to run and hide from larger predators. This nasty combination means that many of the pets we care for have problems every time thunder rolls over the city; we even have dogs that come to see us every time a big storm is going to crash in so we can make sure that they are safe.

Before, there were a few medications that could blunt or stop severe anxiety and we have our soundproofed TV room that prevented the noise from reaching our friends. Unfortunately though, we still wished that we had something more powerful for quelling anxiety with fewer side effects. We have one patient that reacts so strongly to thunder that it was better to put him on chronic drug therapy than try to anticipate thunderstorms. The drugs had a host of side effects: the patient was constantly sedate, did not want to play, and if given for long enough time the drugs could have damaged his liver. Previous drugs also had to be given an hour before a storm which, as any Florida resident can tell you, happen at any moment so we and our clients had to stay up to the minute on the weather to know exactly when to give medication so it would work throughout the storm.

Luckily, Zoetis has started the distribution of Sileo which Dr. Blount is very excited about. It is the first FDA-approved treatment for noise aversion in dogs and it has fewer and less frequent side IMG_4018effects than any other treatment on the market. Previous drugs were also less effective because they were not absorbed as well as Sileo. The medication can be administered at home by applying it to a dog’s gums and it knocks out anxiety for a few hours and can be given as needed throughout a storm, it also takes hold quickly after being administered. Sileo is useful for calming a pet during 4th of July fireworks, parties or any noisy event. Dr. Blount has started to use it to help pets whom are here for playcare and staycare and she is pleased with the results. She has yet to see any side effects, the drug works well, and the pets entrusted to our care are calmer and safer. While not yet approved for these uses by the FDA, Dr. Blount predicts that Sileo will be used for other anxieties, so if your dog panics when his family leaves for dinner it could be used to calm him. The drug would also have applications for training too; by pairing anxiety provoking situations with Sileo it could train the pet to not react to the situation.

We have Sileo available with prescription to arm yourself for those lovely 4th of July fireworks, now your dog can enjoy them with the rest of the family. It is safe and effective in dogs 16 weeks of age and older but should not be used in dogs that are breeding, pregnant, nursing puppies, or have severe dental or gum disease. Sileo should not be redosed before it starts to take effect.

Meet Our New Trainer: Debbie Eaglebarger!

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When did you start working with dogs?

I’ve been working with dogs for as long as I can remember. We always had dogs as a family and I always saw dogs on the street that I interacted with. Dog work has actually been a calling: it came easily and naturally.

How did you become interested in animal training?

When I was 14 I brought home a very unruly dog. My mother told me if I was going to keep the dog he had to go to obedience classes. We won the award for “Most Improved” and ever since then every dog that I had went to obedience class.

Through the years, when I picked up a stray on the street and couldn’t find an owner I prepared the dog to be ready for a new home with basic obedience skills.

Training became critical when I started running the City of Corning Animal Shelter in California in 2002. Dogs came in because they didn’t have manners. Dogs weren’t adopted because they didn’t have manners. Dogs were killed because they didn’t have manners.

I had a good grasp on teaching basic obedience skills. I became highly versed in the AKC CGC requirements and training. I spent 3 weeks at Best Friends Animal Society in Kanab, Utah attending one of their behavior and shelter seminars. One shelter dog I took through the Delta Service Dog program so she could visit people in hospitals and convalescent homes. I’ve gone to week long training seminars in San Francisco as well as an internship in New York for animal behavior and training techniques.

Every dog in the shelter became trained in basic manners skills. Adoption rates soared and within 2 years the shelter I ran went from a “fill and kill” pound to a “no kill to make room” shelter.

Can you tell us about your experience running Second Chance Animal Shelter?

Second Chance Pet Rescue is a non-profit 501(c) organization. It was formed specifically for the City of Corning Animal Shelter. When the city realized that Second Chance knew what it was doing, control of the dogs entering and leaving, and yes, sometimes euthanizing, was given to the organization. I am the founder of that organization and it is still going strong and still running the City of Corning Animal Shelter.

What is your favorite breed of dog? Why?

I would have to say my favorite breed of dog is the Pit Bull. It is one of the most misunderstood breeds right now. People think “fighting dog” many times when they hear pit bull but a temperament correct pit bull has been genetically bred to love people and never turn on them. They are not a guard dog like many people think. The British call them the “nanny dog.” When I did Humane Education presentations for schools the only dog I would bring was a pit bull because I knew that of all the dogs available to me in the shelter, the temperament correct pit bull would not bite a child, even when crowded and all hands were on them. They just loved the attention. I moved from California to Florida in 2014 with 3 shelter pit bulls that I adopted. I am an advocate for the underdog.

What can we look forward to now that you are part of At Home Veterinary Care? What is new and exciting?

I am so excited to be here. What attracted me to At Home Veterinary Care is the progressive and proactive nature of the business. The doggie pool is a slice of heaven. The agility field is a great mind stimulator. The different play yards are fabulous to work with the dogs in.

I am looking forward to playing mind stimulating games with the dogs coming in for Playcare. As I learn about each dog coming in I look for skills that they have and the skills they don’t have. Are they a “jump up on people” kind of dog? I work with them on those issues. Can we make them “sit pretty” instead of jumping up? Do they pull on the leash? I teach them “wait” to slow down. Are they shy or timid? I will partner them with dogs that don’t stress them, but let them grow and flourish. Do they love to put their paws on you? This is a great opportunity to shape into a “high five” trick.

As an obedience trainer I teach “dog talk,” meaning how can you communicate with your dog so that they understand what you want them to do? I love to see an unruly dog come through with their owner and 6 weeks later they have become a harmonious team.

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Learn more about Debbie and her work at the following links 

http://dogtime.com/dog-health/general/1282-second-chance-pet-rescue

http://www.chicoer.com/article/ZZ/20120221/NEWS/120229932

http://insurancenewsnet.com/oarticle/Turning-over-the-leash-Corning-animal-shelter-has-new-caretaker-a-438981

Leash Walking a Cat

You  have noticed your cat transfixed at the window. She watches the clouds and birds wander by. Increasingly, cats and their companions are going outside to play together. Have a look at these two articles about how to train your cat to walk on a leash, featuring Jackson Galaxy of My Cat from Hell fame. I also included a link to another article about a cat who was successfully trained to walk on a leash and now goes on adventures with her family in Sweden! That cat is also seriously cute, my heart melted with the picture of her hiding in a log 😀

Train your cat to walk on a leash

Rescue cat brings ‘evening joy’ to Sweden