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Change in Vaccine Protocol

VACCINATION NEWSFLASH

Download PDF with
Complete 2006 Vaccine Protocol Info


I would like to make you aware that all 27 veterinary schools in North America are in the process of changing their protocols for vaccinating dogs and cats. Some of this information will present an ethical & economic challenge to vets, and there will be skeptics 

Some organizations have come up with a political compromise suggesting vaccinations every 3 years to appease those who fear loss of income vs. those concerned about potential side effects.
Politics, traditions, or the doctor's economic well being should not be a factor in medical decision.

NEW PRINCIPLES OF IMMUNOLOGY

"Dogs and cats immune systems mature fully at 6 months. If a modified live virus vaccine is given after 6 months of age, it produces an immunity which is good for the life of the pet (ie: canine distemper, parvo, feline distemper). If another MLV vaccine is given a year later, the antibodies from the first vaccine neutralize the antigens of the second vaccine and there is little or no effect. The titer is not "boosted" nor are more memory cells induced." Not only are annual boosters for parvo and distemper unnecessary, they subject the pet to potential risks of allergic reactions and immune-mediated hemolytic anemia. "There is no scientific documentation to back up label claims for annual administration of MLV vaccines." Puppies receive antibodies through their mothers milk. This natural protection can last 8-14 weeks.

Puppies & kittens should NOT be vaccinated at LESS than 8 weeks. Maternal immunity will neutralize the vaccine and little protection (0-38%) will be produced. Vaccination at 6 weeks will, however, delay the timing of the first highly effective vaccine. Vaccinations given 2 weeks apart suppress rather than stimulate the immune system. A series of vaccinations is given starting at 8 weeks and given 3-4 weeks apart up to 16 weeks of age. Another vaccination given sometime after 6 months of age (usually at 1 year 4 mo) will provide lifetime immunity.

CURRENT RECOMMENDATIONS FOR DOGS

Distemper & Parvo

"According to Dr. Schultz, AVMA, 8-15-95, when a vaccinations series given at 2, 3 & 4 months and again at 1 year with a MLV, puppies and kitten program memory cells that survive for life, providing lifelong immunity." Dr. Carmichael at Cornell and Dr. Schultz have studies showing immunity against challenge at 2-10 years for canine distemper & 4 years for parvovirus. Studies for longer duration are pending. "There are no new strains of parvovirus as one mfg. would like to suggest. Parvovirus vaccination provides cross immunity for all types." Hepatitis (Adenovirus) is one of the agents known to be a cause of kennel cough. Only vaccines with CAV-2 should be used as CAV-1 vaccines carry the risk of "hepatitis blue-eye" reactions & kidney damage.

Bordetella Parainfluenza: Commonly called "Kennel cough" Recommended only for those dogs boarded, groomed, taken to dog shows, or for any reason housed where exposed to a lot of dogs. The intranasal vaccine provides more complete and more rapid onset of immunity with less chance of reaction. Immunity requires 72 hours and does not protect from every cause of kennel cough. Immunity is of short duration (4 to 6 months).

RABIES and LYME

There have been no reported cases of rabid dogs or cats in Harris, Montogomery or Ft. Bend Counties [Texas], there have been rabid skunks and bats so the potential exists. It is a killed vaccine and must be given every year. Rabies is requied in all states by law. Some states require it yearly, others every 3yrs. A live rabies shot is now know to give protection for at least 7yrs if not a lifetime. however the law is still requiring we all give our animals shots! If your state will accept a Rabies Titer you should opt to go that route. The longer you can go between redoing this this vaccine the better.

Lyme disease is a tick born disease which can cause lameness, kidney failure and heart disease in dogs. Ticks can also transmit the disease to humans. The original Ft. Dodge killed bacteria has proven to be the most effective vaccine. Lyme disease prevention should emphasize early removal of ticks. Amitraz collars are more effective than Top Spot, as amitraz paralyzes the tick's mouth parts preventing transmission of disease. However there are higher risks in using Amitraz collars (read here): http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?cls=0&articleid=1376

VACCINATIONS NOT RECOMMENDED

Multiple components in vaccines compete with each other for the immune system and result in lesser immunity for each individual disease as well as increasing the risk of a reaction.

Canine Corona Virus is only a disease of puppies. It is rare, self limiting (dogs get well in 3 days without treatment). Cornell &Texas A&M have only diagnosed one case each in the last 7 years. Corona virus does not cause disease in adult dogs.

Leptospirosis vaccine is a common cause of adverse reactions in dogs . Most of the clinical cases of lepto reported in dogs in the US are caused by serovaars (or types) grippotyphosa and bratsilvia.  The vaccines contain different serovaars eanicola and ictohemorrhagica. Cross protection is not provided and protection is short lived. Lepto vaccine is immuno-supressive to puppies less than 16 weeks.

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

Giardia is the most common intestinal parasite of humans in North America, 30% or more of all dogs & cats are infected with giardia. It has now been demonstrated that humans can transmit giardia to dogs & cats & vice versa.  Heartworm preventative must be given year round in Houston

VACCINES BADLY NEEDED

New vaccines in development include: Feline Immunodeficiency Virus and cat scratch   fever vaccine for cats and Ehrlichia [one of the other tick diseases, much worse than Lymes] for dogs.

THE VIEW FROM THE TRENCHES; BUSINESS ASPECTS

Most vets recommend annual boosters and most kennel operators require them. For years the pricing structure of vets has misled clients into thinking that the inherent value of an annual office visit was in the "shots" they failed to emphasize the importance of a physical exam for early detection of treatable diseases. It is my hope that you will continue to require rabies & Kennel cough and emphasize the importance of a recent vet exam. I also hope you will accept the new protocols and honor these pets as currently vaccinated. Those in the boarding business who will honor the new vaccine protocols can gain new customers who were turned away from vet owned boarding facilities reluctant to change.

CONCLUSION

Dogs & cats no longer need to be vaccinated against distemper, parvo, & feline leukemia

 every year . Once the initial series of puppy or kitten vaccinations and first annual vaccinations are completed, immunity from MLV vaccines persists for life. It has been shown that cats over 1 year of age are immune to Feline Leukemia whether they have been vaccinated or not. Imagine the money you will save, not to mention fewer risks from side effects. PCR rabies vaccine, because it is not adjuvanted, will mean less risk of mediated hemolytic anemia and allergic reactions are reduced by less frequent use of vaccines as well as by avoiding unnecessary vaccines such as K-9 Corona virus and chlamydia for cats, as well as ineffective vaccines such as Leptospirosis and FIP. Intranasal vaccine for Rhiotracheitis and Calici virus, two upper respiratory viruses of cats provide more complete protection than injectable vaccines with less risk of serious reactions.

The AAHA and all 27 veterinary schools of North America are our biggest endorsement for these new protocols.

Dr. Bob Rogers

Please consider as current on all vaccinations for boarding purposes

DOGS Initial series of puppy vaccines

1. distemper, hepatitis, parvo, parinfluenze - 3 sets one month apart concluding at 16 weeks of age.

2. Rabies at 16 weeks of age (later is better)

3. Bordetella within last 4-6 months.  First annual (usually at 1 year and 4 months of age)

1. DHP, Parvo, Rabies

2. Bordetella within last 4-6 months 2 years or older

1. Rabies with in last year

2. Bordetella within last 4-6 months

3. DHP & Parvo given anytime over 6 months of age , but not necessarily within the last year.

Recommended: Physical exam for transmissible diseases and health risks.

 

MAMMARY CANCER
CanineCancerAwareness.org

The following information is simply informational. It's intent is not to replace the advice of a veterinarian nor to assist you in making a diagnosis of your pet. Please consult with your own veterinary physician for confirmation of any diagnosis. Your pets life may depend on it.

OVERVIEW *

Did you know that half of all the tumors in female dogs are preventable breast tumors? Dogs develop breast cancer because they were not spayed before their first or second heat period. Intact female dogs are highly prone to developing breast tumors. In fact, they are seven times more likely to get breast cancer than a spayed dog. One out of four intact female dogs over 4 years of age will probably develop one or more breast tumors along the mammary gland chains. Half of all tumors are malignant and unfortunately, half to 75% of them will kill the dog by recurrence or spreading (metastasizing) to the lungs within one to two years. German Shepherds, Dobies and Nordic Breeds seem to do poorly, while poodles, terriers and cockers seem to have greater incidence. Sex hormones produced by canine ovaries during their six-month cycle cause a harmful sensitization or pre-programming of the breast tissue. This hormonal influence ultimately causes point mutations in the genes of the breast tissue cells that dictate tumor growth. Progesterone and estrogen are the hormones that cause this “field cancerization” effect. Progesterone therapy may cause breast tumors in dogs. The sex hormone receptors in canine mammary tumors have not been good indicators for therapeutic response due to their very low level of activity. If the tumor has positive estrogen or progesterone receptors, it tends to be benign. An intact female dog may develop a tumor in any one of her ten mammary glands and over half will present with more than one tumor.

CLINICAL SIGNS:**

There can be a single or several tumors, and they can occur in one or more glands. The last two sets of glands (the 4th and 5th glands) are most commonly affected. The tumors can be firm or soft, well-defined lumps or diffuse swellings. Tumors can be attached to underlying tissues or moveable, skin-covered or ulcerated. They can be different sizes, and they may grow slowly or quite fast. Most dogs are seen by the veterinarian for signs associated with the primary tumor and are otherwise feeling well. A few dogs are diagnosed with advanced metastasis (tumors that have spread to elsewhere in the body, such as the lungs and lymph nodes) and might be feeling ill from their tumors when they come for treatment.

DIAGNOSIS/INITIAL EVALUATION:*

Fine needle aspiration is controversial for breast tumor classification. I like to perform cytology on mammary tumors before surgery because it is wise to rule out mast cell cancer and cystic disease. I recall a case where cytology proved to be very important. Several years ago, an intact female Maltese was given a poor prognosis and turned down for breast cancer surgery by a boarded surgeon’s office. The grief stricken family came in for a second opinion. The dog had multiple firm nodules along both mammary chains. During consultation, I aspirated one nodule from every mammary gland and found cystic fluid in each with no cancer cells. Some tumors appear benign and others appear “hot” on the cytology slide. If the tumor appears in multiple glands and looks “hot” (malignant) on cytology, I recommend pre-surgical planning for a more extensive surgery such as radical mastectomy to include the draining lymph nodes. If we educate our pet owners, they’ll want to discuss the pros and cons of surgery.

STAGING:**

Mammary gland tumors can be either malignant (cancerous) or benign (non-cancerous) and arise from the different types of tissues (epithelial or glandular tissues, and mesenchymal or connective tissues) in the mammary gland. The most common types are tumors from the glandular tissues and include adenoma, carcinoma, and adenocarcinoma. Half of all mammary gland tumors are benign and can be treated successfully with surgery alone. The other half are malignant and have the potential for metastasis. The outcome for patients with malignant mammary gland tumors depends on several factors including tumor type, histologic grade (appearance of the tumor cells under the microscope and how similar or dissimilar they are to normal tissues), tumor size, and tumor stage (presence of regional and distant metastasis).

We recommend that all mammary gland masses are surgically removed and biopsied to determine the tumor type. Dogs with benign tumors usually do not require further treatment, but cases with malignant tumors should be staged (evaluated for metastasis by tests such as chest X-rays and abdominal ultrasound). Dogs with small (less than about 1 inch diameter) low histologic grade carcinomas and adenocarcinomas with no evidence of metastasis may be treated effectively with surgery alone. Dogs with large or invasive tumors, high histologic grade, sarcomas (tumors of mesenchymal origin), lymph node involvement and/or other sites of spread are at risk for both recurrence of the original tumor and metastasis.

TREATMENT:*

There is no question that all firm breast tumors should be promptly removed and sent to the lab for biopsy. Mammary tumors should always be removed because they only get bigger. If the tumor is smaller than 3 cm in size, the dog will live longer. If the dog is not spayed, there is now proof that she will benefit by having the ovaries and uterus removed (OVH). A belated OVH for a tumor-bearing dog can reduce her chances of masking her tumors with a false pregnancy. She can also be spared the common problem of infection of the uterus (pyometra) that follows about a month after estrus. OVH also eliminates the risk of ovarian and uterine tumors. Whenever possible, I prefer a wide surgical removal over a conservative procedure. If a singular mass is presumed to be malignant, I prefer that the entire tumor is removed with a normal gland above and below the mass. Since all the breast tissue is pre programmed to make tumors, I feel that the dog may be truly better off with the susceptible mammary tissue being removed; however, the literature does not suggest this for localized tumors. If the biopsy report shows that the tumor is malignant and has invaded into the lymph system or if the surgical margins were dirty, a second surgery is suggested to get clean margins and the local draining lymph node for biopsy. In specialized centers, surgery along with intraoperative radiation may reduce or arrest a vicious cycle of local recurrence. Follow up radiation therapy to the primary site and draining lymph node may also help reduce the problem of local recurrence and local metastasis. Sheena, a beautiful brown Dobie, was presented in distress. The Figuroa family was heart broken with the news from their referring vet that Sheena could not be helped with further surgery. Sheena had two rapid recurrences at the same site and then developed an enlarged right axillary lymph node that threatened her life. We quickly started Sheena on radiation and chemotherapy. In February, 2001, Sheena celebrates her 3-year anniversary.<

For the past 25 years, the most commonly used chemotherapy protocol for the prevention of metastases from malignant breast cancer in dogs was Adriamycin at 30mg/M@ LV. every 21 days and oral Cytoxan at 50 mg every other day for 8 weeks or on day 3-6 of each 21 day cycle. For the past 8 years many oncologists, including myself, prefer to use mitoxantron (Novantrone™) at 6 mg/M@ as a first choice and then Adriamycin or Carboplatin at 300mg/M@ for resistant disease.

The selected drug is administered every 21 to 30 days for 4-6 treatments then every 5- 6 weeks for 4-6 treatments or more depending on the severity of the malignancy. Treatment with chemotherapy may reduce the ability of the circulating cancer cells to establish viable colonies in the lungs.

In my practice, we recommend the supplements that are shown to reduce the risk of breast cancer for women: Inositol hexaphosphate (IP6 derived from rice), 1-3-beta glucan (derived from yeast) and ambrotose® (available from Mannatech), which contains the sugar, fucose, which is deficient in breast and prostate cancer patients. It makes sense to recommend these products for life since intact female dogs have the highest incidence of breast tumors than any other companion animal and three times the incidence of breast tumors than women. If these “Chemoprevention” (see VPN, March 2000) supplements are added tot he diet, they may play a role in the prevention of recurrent breast tumors in predisposed dogs.

CLINICAL TRIALS:

We are not aware of any clinical trials at this time

CLINICAL TRIAL RESULTS:***

1: J Vet Intern Med. 2003 Jan-Feb;17(1):102-6.

Influence of host factors on survival in dogs with malignant mammary gland tumors.

Philibert JC, Snyder PW, Glickman N, Glickman LT, Knapp DW, Waters DJ.

Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine, West Lafayette, IN, USA. jphilibert@nevog.com

The purpose of our study was to determine if specific host factors, such as age at diagnosis, obesity, and hormone status, influence the prognosis of canine mammary gland carcinomas and to confirm if previously reported risk factors (ie, histologic subtype, tumor size, and World Health Organization [WHO] stage) were important in a large series of affected dogs. Ninety-nine female dogs with mammary gland carcinomas, no previous therapy, an excisional biopsy, and known cause of death were studied. No significant association with survival was noted for age at diagnosis (chronologic or physiologic), obesity, or hormone status (ie, spayed versus intact, regardless of time of being spayed). Of the tumor factors analyzed, the histologic subtype anaplastic carcinoma (P = .02), WHO stage I (P = .01), evidence of metastasis at the time of diagnosis (P = .004), and tumor size of 3 cm or smaller (P = .005) all significantly influenced survival. Dogs that were classified as having tumor-related mortality had a shorter postoperative survival compared to dogs that died of other causes (14 months versus 23 months; P = .03). In conclusion, histologic subtype, WHO stage, and tumor size remain important prognostic factors in canine mammary gland tumors. Further study of other prognostic factors is needed to determine which tumors are adequately addressed with local therapy only and which dogs may require adjuvant treatment with chemotherapy.

PMID: 12564734 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

2. J Vet Intern Med. 2000 May-Jun;14(3):266-70.

Effect of spaying and timing of spaying on survival of dogs with mammary carcinoma

Sorenmo KU, Shofer FS, Goldschmidt MH

Department of Clinical Studies and Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104-6010, USA.

The risk of developing mammary gland tumors in dogs is significantly decreased by ovariohysterectomy at an early age. However, previous studies have not found a benefit to ovariohysterectomy concurrent with tumor removal in dogs with established mammary gland tumors, suggesting that the progression of these tumors is independent of continued estrogen stimulation. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of spaying and of the timing of spaying on survival in dogs with mammary gland carcinoma. Signalment, spay status and spay age, tumor characteristics, treatment. survival, and cause of death of 137 dogs with mammary gland carcinoma were analyzed. The dogs were classified into 3 groups according to spay status and spay time: intact dogs, dogs spayed less than 2 years before tumor surgery (SPAY 1), and dogs spayed more than 2 years before their tumor surgery (SPAY 2). Dogs in the SPAY 1 group lived significantly longer than dogs in SPAY 2 and intact dogs (median survival of 755 days, versus 301 and 286 days, respectively, P = .02 and .03). After adjusting for differences between the spay groups with regard to age, histologic differentiation, and vascular invasion, SPAY 1 dogs survived 45% longer compared to dogs that were either intact or in the SPAY 2 group (RR = .55; 95% CI .32-.93; P = .03). This study reveals ovariohysterectomy to be an effective adjunct to tumor removal in dogs with mammary gland carcinoma and that the timing of ovariohysterectomy is important in influencing survival.

PMID: 10830539 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

NOTE: Dr. Sorenmo and the other oncologists at the MJR-Veterinary Hospital of the
University of Pennsylvania are unable to answer questions directly from
owners.  However, please feel free to direct questions through the
veterinary editor of OncoLink.  Owners with questions will either be
directed to the appropriate resources or a new FAQ will be created if the
requested information is not readily available.

 

LINKS FOR MORE INFORMATION ON MAMMARY CANCER:

Angiogenesis Foundation

Wing and Wave Labradors

VetInfo

The Pet Center (This site is graphic)

Oncolink

Pet Education.com (By Drs. Foster & Smith)

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS:

*Many thanks and acknowledgment to Dr. Alice Villalobos, Editor-in-Cheif of the American Association of Human Animal Bond Veterinarians; Animal Oncology Consultation Service
Coast Pet Clinic of Hermosa Beach, Inc. for enthusiatically granting us permission to use the above information. To read more about the wonderful work Dr. Villalobos has done in the field of animal oncology
click here.

**Canine Cancer Awareness gratefully acknowledges the University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center ( OncoLink) for granting us permission for the use of the above information.

*** PubMed , Published for MEDLINE, National Library of Medicine

 

 

911 Pet Emergencies and First Aid

Bratpack Rescue, Inc.

 

911

First Aid

What it is:  Initial assessment and stabilization of injured animal

What it is not. Therapy for a condition

Triage

  Prioritization of critically ill or injured animals into those requiring immediate treatment

 

911 – Overview

Basic animal physiology

Normal vital signs

Shock – What`s it all about?

General First Aid Information

First Aid Kit

Initial Scene survey

Capture, muzzle and transport techniques

How to place a bandage

Basic CPR

Common emergency situations and fist aid help

Final Thoughts

Download full article

 

Mammary Tumors in Dogs

The Pet Health Care Library

 

We've all heard of breast cancer in women. With approximately one woman in eight or nine falling victim to this form of cancer, there are awareness campaigns from numerous health care agencies. and research continues. What many pet owners do not know is that the incidence of mammary tumor development in dogs is higher yet with one in four unspayed female dogs affected. This is a huge incidence, yet awareness among owners of female dogs is lacking.
 
Protection from Spaying

A female puppy spayed before her first heat cycle can expect never to develop a mammary tumor of any kind. The incidence of tumor development in this group is nearly zero.

If she is allowed to experience one heat cycle before spaying, the incidence rises to 7% (still quite low).

If she is allowed to experience more than one heat cycle, the risk is driven up to one in four.

  • Since most female dogs come into heat the first time before age one and breeding an immature female dog is not recommended, this means one must generally choose between a litter of puppies or mammary cancer prevention.
  • Because mammary tumors are promoted by female hormones, spaying at any age is helpful in tumor prevention. Just because a female dog is in the high-risk group doesn't mean it is too late to reap benefit from spaying.

Early Detection

 

If your dog is unspayed, was known to have had puppies, or was spayed in adulthood, she fits into the high-risk group for mammary cancer development. It is important to be somewhat familiar with the normal mammary anatomy of the female dog. There are ten sets of mammary glands as shown though the average female dog has only nine. (It is not unusual for asymmetry of mammary glands to be found.) The normal glands should be soft and pliant, especially towards the rear legs. There should be no firm lumps. If a lump is detected, see your veterinarian at once regarding possible removal. Most tumors occur in the glands nearest the rear legs.

Benign vs. Malignant

The good news, if there is some, is that approximately 50% of the tumors formed by female dogs are benign.  Since one cannot tell which it is by looking at a tumor, the tumor or part of it must be removed and sampled for biopsy. The laboratory can determine whether the tumor is benign or malignant based on the cells and their architecture within the tissue. Alternatively, a needle aspirate can be performed, in which a syringe is used to withdraw some cells from the growth and the laboratory can determine whether the tumor is benign or malignant with enough accuracy to determine how aggressive the surgical approach should be. Needle aspirate may be a helpful pre-operative procedure in many cases, but it should be understood that biopsy is ultimately what is necessary to determine the extent of disease.

Hormone Receptors

Approximately 50% of malignant mammary tumors in the dog have receptors for either estrogen or progesterone. This means that the presence of these female hormones promotes the growth of these tumors. Benign tumors also have female hormone receptors and can also be stimulated by hormonal cycling of the female dog. This means that spaying is important even if a tumor has already developed; in one study, female dogs spayed at the time of mammary tumor removal or two years prior lived 45% longer than those who remained unspayed.

Types Of Tumors

The following are common classes of mammary tumors that might be found on a biopsy.

Fibroadenoma:
A benign glandular tumor for which no treatment is necessary.

Mixed Mammary Tumor:
What is mixed is the type of cell that makes up the tumor: the epithelial cells that line the glandular tissue and the mesenchymal cells that make up the non-glandular portion. (Mixed does not refer to a mix of benign and malignant cells.) The mixed tumor can be either benign or malignant and the biopsy will indicate this.

Adenocarcinoma:
Adenocarcinomas can be tubular or papillary, depending on the gland cells the tumor arises from. Adenocarcinomas behave malignantly but how aggressively malignant they are depends not on whether they are tubular or papillary, but on other cellular characteristics described by the pathologist (such as how quickly the cells appear to be dividing and how closely they resemble normal gland cells). When the oncologist reads the description he or she will be able to determine how aggressively to combat the tumor.

Inflammatory Carcinoma:
A highly malignant tumor that generates tremendous inflammation locally with ulceration, pus, and discomfort. This type of tumor tends to spread early in its course and is difficult to treat. Fortunately, this especially tragic tumor type accounts for less than 5% of mammary tumors.

In general: approximately 50% of malignant mammary tumors will have already spread by the time of surgery.

This, of course, means that the other 50% are locally confined and surgery is curative.

What Else Determines Prognosis?

The type of tumor is obviously important in determining the prognosis; further, spaying at the time of tumor removal or prior is also an important factor in determining prognosis. Other factors include:

  • The size of the tumor. Tumors with diameters larger than 1.5 inches have a worse prognosis than smaller tumors.
  • Evidence of spread to the lymphatic system (such as the presence of tumor cells in a local lymph node or visible tumor cells with in lymphatic vessels on the biopsy) carries a worse prognosis.
  • Deeper tumors or tumor adherence to deeper tissue structures carries a worse prognosis.
  • An ulcerated tumor surface carries a worse prognosis.
  • A history of especially rapid growth carries a worse prognosis.

The biopsy sample will not only identify the tumor type, it will also indicated whether or not the tumor was completely removed (so called "clean" or "dirty" margins).

If the tumor was not completely removed, one may wish to consider a second surgery to remove more tissue.

Further Therapy?

Radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and anti-estrogen therapy have been used for incompletely removed tumors. Sometimes it is most appropriate to monitor for recurrence with periodic chest radiographs.

Specialized care is often required for cancer patients. To find a cancer specialist, please visit: www.vetquest.com or http://www.acvim.org.

Top 10 Human Medications That Poison Our Pets

Although pet parents are well aware of poisons lurking around their home, many don’t realize that some of the biggest culprits are sitting right on their own nightstands. In 2007, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center received 89,000 calls related to pets ingesting over-the-counter and prescription medications. To help you prevent an accident from happening, our experts have created a list of the top 10 human medications that most often poison our furry friends.

If you suspect your pet has ingested any of the following items, please call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center’s 24-hour hotline at (888) 426-4435. And remember to keep all medications tucked away in bathroom cabinets—and far from curious cats and dogs.

NSAIDs
NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) like ibuprofen or naproxen are the most common cause of pet poisoning in small animals, and can cause serious problems even in minimal doses. Pets are extremely sensitive to their effects, and may experience stomach and intestinal ulcers and—in the case of cats—kidney damage.

Antidepressants
Antidepressants can cause vomiting and lethargy and certain types can lead to serotonin syndrome—a condition marked by agitation, elevated body temperature, heart rate and blood pressure, disorientation, vocalization, tremors and seizures.

Acetaminophen
Cats are especially sensitive to acetaminophen, which can damage red blood cells and interfere with their ability to transport oxygen. In dogs, it can cause liver damage and, at higher doses, red blood cell damage.

Methylphenidate (for ADHD)
Medications used to treat ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) in people act as stimulants in pets and can dangerously elevate heart rates, blood pressure and body temperature, as well as cause seizures.

Fluorouracil
Fluorouracil—an anti-cancer drug—is used topically to treat minor skin cancers and solar keratitis in humans. It has proven to be rapidly fatal to dogs, causing severe vomiting, seizures and cardiac arrest even in those who’ve chewed on discarded cotton swabs used to apply the medication.

Isoniazid
Often the first line of defense against tuberculosis, isoniazid is particularly toxic for dogs because they don’t metabolize it as well as other species. It can cause a rapid onset of severe seizures that may ultimately result in death.

Pseudoephedrine
Pseudoephedrine is a popular decongestant in many cold and sinus products, and acts like a stimulant if accidentally ingested by pets. In cats and dogs, it causes elevated heart rates, blood pressure and body temperature as well as seizures.

Anti-diabetics
Many oral diabetes treatments—including glipizide and glyburide—can cause a major drop in blood sugar levels of affected pets. Clinical signs of ingestion include disorientation, lack of coordination and seizures.

Vitamin D derivatives
Even small exposures to Vitamin D analogues like calcipotriene and calcitriol can cause life-threatening spikes in blood calcium levels in pets. Clinical signs of exposure—including vomiting, loss of appetite, increased urination and thirst due to kidney failure—often don't occur for more than 24 hours after ingestion.

Baclofen
Baclofen is a muscle relaxant that can impair the central nervous systems of cats and dogs. Some symptoms of ingestion include significant depression, disorientation, vocalization, seizures and coma, which can lead to death.