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Current Pet Food Recalls

Friday, April 5th, 2013

All pet food recalls are listed with the FDA. Here is a list of those announced so far in 2013.

4/3/13 BRAVO! raw frozen diets for dogs and cats for possible salmonella risk.

3/29/13 Natura Pet Products dry pet food and treats for salmonella.

3/10/13 Premium Edge, Diamond Naturals, and 4health dry cat food for low thiamine (vitamin B1).

3/7/13 Diggin’ Your Dog Strippin’ Chicks pet treats for salmonella.

3/7/13 Steve’s Real Food Turducken Canine Recipe Patties for salmonella.

3/6/13 Jones Natural Chews Co. Woofers Dog Treats for salmonella. Read the rest of this entry »

February is Pet Dental Health Month

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013


February is National Pet Dental Health Month

At Town & Country Animal Hospital we are very focused on dental health. We have an award winning facility that includes a dental suite to meet all of your pets’ dental health needs. We will gladly offer a tour of our entire clinic and explain what special equipment we have to perform complicated dental surgeries, extractions and endodontics (root canals, etc). Dental health is as important for our pets as it is for us.

Please see this press release from the AVMA for more information about keeping our pets healthy.


Want to save money on your veterinary bills?

During Pet Dental Health Month, the AVMA reminds pet owners that preventive dental care is always less expensive than oral catastrophes

(SCHAUMBURG, Illinois) January 30, 2013—It’s an integral part of your morning routine. Still half asleep, you step up to your bathroom sink and pick up your toothbrush. Unfortunately, many pet owners don’t make it a habit of providing good dental hygiene for their pets, too. Pet Dental Health Month, sponsored by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), is reminding pet owners that brushing their pet’s teeth can result in long-term savings.

“Good pet owners are concerned about their pets’ health and are careful to keep their vaccinations up to date, but may forget about the importance of oral health. Great owners know that this is a big mistake, as periodontal disease is the most common health problem that veterinarians find in pets,” explains Dr. Douglas Aspros, president of the AVMA. “Dental health problems are extremely common, and many are very painful and can lead to serious systemic conditions. I remind pet owners that an untreated dental infection can spread to the heart, kidneys and other organs, and suddenly become life threatening. Practicing good dental hygiene at home in addition to regular cleanings by your veterinarian is the most efficient and cost-effective way to extend your pet’s life, while keeping them comfortable and pain-free.”

“Correcting dental health problems can be expensive. If your veterinarian diagnoses your pet with tooth or gum disease, they may recommend that your pet’s teeth be professionally cleaned, x-rays may be called for, and it’s possible that a tooth or even multiple teeth may need to be extracted,” explains Dr. Brook A. Niemiec, a board certified veterinary dentist and president of the Academy of Veterinary Dentistry. “Unfortunately, only about 1 percent of pet owners brush their pet’s teeth. Not only do more pet owners need to brush their pet’s teeth, but they should also use chew toys, treats and rawhides to help keep their pet’s teeth clean. There are a number of inexpensive and highly effective products available that can help keep your pet’s teeth clean between professional cleanings. If you have questions about the right products to use, consult your veterinarian.”

A list of Veterinary Oral Health Council approved products is available at

While regular dental checkups are essential to help maintain your pet’s dental health, there are a number of signs that dental disease has already started. If you notice any of the symptoms below, take your pet into your veterinarian as soon as possible:

*Bad breath—Most pets have breath that is less than fresh, but if it becomes truly repugnant, that’s a sign that periodontal disease has already started.

*Frequent pawing or rubbing at the face and/or mouth.

*Reluctance to eat hard foods.

*Red swollen gums and brownish teeth.

To help pet owners prevent periodontal disease, the AVMA offers a video providing step-by-step instructions on how to brush your pet’s teeth and a video on periodontal disease. The AVMA website also has a webpage on pet dental health that offers links to an informative podcast and other information resources on pet dental health.

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The AVMA, founded in 1863, is one of the oldest and largest veterinary medical organizations in the world, with more than 84,000 member veterinarians worldwide engaged in a wide variety of professional activities and dedicated to the art and science of veterinary medicine.

Miami-Dade voters back creation of Pets’ Trust

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

By Elinor J. Brecher

Voters in Miami-Dade overwhelmingly supported a measure that could save the lives of more than 20,000 cats and dogs a year, and set the county on a path to achieve its “no kill’’ goal for the Animal Services Department.

The straw-vote victory on a ballot question to support a small property-tax increase for animal welfare now puts the issue in the hands of the Miami-Dade County Commission.

Commissioners wanted to see whether the public favored the issue in principle, and how enthusiastically.

As of late Tuesday, with 627 of the county’s 829 precincts reporting, voters said yes to the Pets’ Trust, by an almost 2-to-1 margin.

Commissioners are now likely to create the agency, which would augment efforts by Miami-Dade Animal Services Department to reduce pet overpopulation and shelter deaths.

The department takes in about 37,000 unwanted cats and dogs a year.

More than half are never adopted, and end up euthanized.

Volunteer board

Even before a definitive commission vote, Pets’ Trust Initiative founders will begin planning for the creation of a 13- to 15-member volunteer board of animal advocates and experts. That board would oversee how an estimated $20 million raised annually would pay for free and low-cost veterinary services and public-education programs on responsible pet ownership.

The Trust, which would cost the average property owner $20 a year, would come up for review annually.

Michael Rosenberg, the Kendall businessman who founded the Pets’ Trust, said that a national advisory board will also be assembled “to ensure that this program is done correctly.’’

‘a chance at life’

“While so many people have expressed and shared their love of our animals by this vote, they are equally concerned by our promise to do this right,’’ he said. “There is a distrust of government that has made many people skeptical, but they have voted ‘yes’ because they want to give our animals a chance at life.’’

He expects it to become a national model.

“Miami-Dade County will prove that when the community is asked the question, ‘How do you care about animals?’ the answer will be we do care and we want the problem fixed. No one ever asked the people this question until now.’’

Commissioner Sally Heyman, a supporter, said that the measure’s success proves that residents “are willing to tax themselves if they see logic, justification, and inclusion.’’

‘the message’

Added Alex Muñoz, Animal Services director: “We will work with the community and our elected officials to implement new and expanded life-saving programs to increase the amount of pets saved, re-homed, and sterilized. The passage of this referendum is providing us with opportunities not previously available.’’

Rosenberg estimates about $70,000 was spent on the campaign thus far.

“The commissioners certainly will get the message,’’ Rosenberg said. and we will bring that message in a strong and positive way. “Our community has voted ‘Yes, stop the killing, and begin a new way of caring for our animals.’ ’’

For more information go to The Miami Herald

Halloween Safety Tips

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

No Scaredy Cats This Halloween: Top 10 Safety Tips for Pet Parents

Attention, animal lovers, it’s almost the spookiest night of the year! The ASPCA recommends taking some common sense precautions this Halloween to keep you and your pet saying “trick or treat!” all the way to November 1.

1. No tricks, no treats: That bowl of candy is for trick-or-treaters, not for Scruffy and Fluffy. Chocolate in all forms—especially dark or baking chocolate—can be very dangerous for dogs and cats. Candies containing the artificial sweetener xylitol can also cause problems. If you do suspect your pet has ingested something toxic, please call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435.

2. Popular Halloween plants such as pumpkins and decorative corn are considered to be relatively nontoxic, but they can produce stomach upset in pets who nibble on them.

3. Wires and cords from electric lights and other decorations should be kept out of reach of your pets. If chewed, your pet might suffer cuts or burns, or receive a possibly life-threatening electrical shock.

4. A carved pumpkin certainly is festive, but do exercise caution if you choose to add a candle. Pets can easily knock a lit pumpkin over and cause a fire. Curious kittens especially run the risk of getting burned or singed by candle flames.

5. Dress-up can be a big mess-up for some pets. Please don’t put your dog or cat in a costume UNLESS you know he or she loves it (yup, a few pets are real hams!). For pets who prefer their “birthday suits,” however, wearing a costume may cause undue stress.

6. If you do dress up your pet, make sure the costume isn’t annoying or unsafe. It should not constrict the animal’s movement or hearing, or impede his ability to breathe, bark or meow. Also, be sure to try on costumes before the big night. If your pet seems distressed, allergic or shows abnormal behavior, consider letting him go au naturale or donning a festive bandana.

7. Take a closer look at your pet’s costume and make sure it does not have small, dangling or easily chewed-off pieces that he could choke on. Also, ill-fitting outfits can get twisted on external objects or your pet, leading to injury.

8. All but the most social dogs and cats should be kept in a separate room away from the front door during peak trick-or-treating hours. Too many strangers can be scary and stressful for pets.

9. When opening the door for trick-or-treaters, take care that your cat or dog doesn’t dart outside.

10. IDs, please! Always make sure your dog or cat has proper identification. If for any reason your pet escapes and becomes lost, a collar and tags and/or a microchip can be a lifesaver, increaing the chances that he or she will be returned to you.

For more information go to: ASPCA

National Veterinary Technician Week

Friday, October 19th, 2012

National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America’s executive board and staff are excited to celebrate the 20th year for NVTW and hope it is great one for you, too! This year’s theme is: We’re TECH savvy Technicians Educators Caregivers Healers. We all are looking forward to celebrating the annual commitment every veterinary technician gives to the profession of veterinary technology, veterinary assisting and veterinary medicine.

NAVTA is proud to represent veterinary technicians and support our members, state associations, specialties and student chapters during NVTW. Thank you for your participation and enthusiasm!

For more information go to: NAVTA

In Miami-Dade, pit bulls remain illegal

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Miami-Dade banned pit bulls 23 years ago.
Ethan Hyman / Staff photo by Ethan Hyman

The Miami Herald
Repeal advocates say they’re disappointed, but won’t give up their fight to end the ban.


Pit bulls are still outlaws in Miami-Dade County.

Voters overwhelming opted to keep a 1989 ban on American Staffordshire terriers, Staffordshire bull terriers and high-content mixes of both.

“The fight does not end here,’’ said Debi Day, an activist with No Kill Nation. “Plans B, C and D will go into effect immediately. We will not let the pit bulls and their owners be forever victim to this discriminatory law.’’

Dade residents voted 63.2 percent to 36.8 percent to keep the ban which was first put in place when a dog ripped apart the face of a Kendall 8-year-old.

Among them, voters Patrick and Sonia Reid of West Kendall, who consider the dogs “vicious.’’

“People don’t always do what they are supposed to do,’’ said Patrick Reid. “They are supposed to keep them secured.”

But on the flip side, graphic designer and mother Lily Sanchez voted for repeal.

“These dogs shouldn’t be discriminated. It’s up to the owners and breeders on how they train their dog,” Sanchez said. “With a 23-year ban, it’s time to stop.”

Repeal advocates waged a passionate grassroots campaign with the help of celebrities like Shorty Rossi, from the reality show “Pit Boss,’’ and Marlins pitcher Mark Buehrle, who settled in Broward after signing with the team because one of his family’s pets, Slater, is an American Staffordshire.

Dahlia Canes, founder of the Miami Coalition Against Breed-Specific Legislation, the group that spearheaded the ban repeal, was disappointed but not surprised.

“We didn’t think it would pass,’’ said Canes. “This was handed to us [by the County Commission] whether we liked it or not and we had to take up the challenge. We only had a few months to reeducate an entire county that has been brainwashed for 23 years.’’

In February, a group of Miami-Dade commissioners short-circuited what appeared to be a winning effort in the state legislature to abolish the ban, calling it an attack on the county’s home rule authority.

Canes also said that putting the words “pit bull’’ and “dangerous dog’’ in the same sentence in the ballot question all but doomed the effort.

Repeal advocates say that pit bulls suffer from unwarranted stereotyping as vicious killers with nearly supernatural powers of destruction, and that thousands live peacefully as family pets all over Miami-Dade despite the ban.

During the day Tuesday, repeal supporter posted pictures of their illegal dogs on the Coalition’s Facebook page with from-the-dog comments like: “I can’t wait to go to the dog park!’’ and “Waiting for the results so I can walk down the street for the first time in my 10 years of life. They say every dog has their day and today is my day!!’’

Miami-Dade Animal Services Director Alex Munoz said in a statement that the department “respects the will of the electorate and its decision to not repeal the ‘pit bull’ ban today.

“We want the public to know that while this ban continues, the department will continue to work with rescue organizations and adopters to find new lifelong homes for ‘pit bulls’ outside of Miami-Dade County.’’

Herald writers Stephanie Parra, Andrea Torres, Lidia Dinkova and Sabrina Rodriguez, contributed to this report.

Read more here:

Miami-Dade County’s Animal Services Department Shelter is Designated a No Kill Facility

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

For Immediate Release:
July 06, 2012
Kathleen Labrada

Miami-Dade County’s Animal Services Department Shelter is Designated a No Kill Facility

The Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners adopted landmark legislation, sponsored by Commissioner José “Pepe” Díaz, at its July 3, 2012 meeting designating the Miami-Dade County Animal Services Department Shelter as a no kill facility.  “Pet owners and animal lovers throughout Miami-Dade have been waiting for a no kill policy to be implemented at our Animal Services Department.  The No Kill Equation provides alternatives to euthanizing animals by partnering with community organizations and reaching out to residents about the importance of sterilizing their pets to decrease our stray population.  As a pet owner myself, I look forward to seeing this plan in action in the coming months,” said Commissioner Diaz.

“As the proud owner of two wonderful pets, including a rescue dog, I’m pleased the County Commission has adopted this policy,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez.  “I hope this will further encourage residents to visit our shelter, adopt these loving animals and give them permanent, new homes.”

Becoming a no kill shelter means having a 90 percent or better rate of animals saved at the County’s animal shelter due to specific programs developed by the no kill movement in the United States, which provides alternatives to animal shelter euthanasia.  The resolution is modeled after the No Kill Equation, a program model which changes the way shelters operate and provides the animal-loving public an integral role in that operation.  A forthcoming Mayor’s report will be consistent with the No Kill Equation and include:

  • Comprehensive Adoption Programs
  • Free-Roaming Cat Trap/Neuter/Return Programs
  • High-Volume, Affordable Spay/Neuter Services
  • Large-Scale Volunteer Foster Care Programs
  • Rescue Group Transfers
  • Proactive Pet Retention Programs
  • Proactive Pet Redemptions
  • Medical and Behavioral Programs
  • Public Relations/Community Involvement
  • Volunteer Programs

Miami-Dade County Animal Services Department Director Alex Muñoz has embraced these ideas and wants to expand on the work already being done by the shelter, which last year saved a large majority of stray and abandoned dogs.  “A lot more work is needed to reduce the number of cats brought to the shelter and increase the number of cats adopted,” Muñoz said.  “The implementation of no kill programs will require the development and implementation of new programs and the expansion of current efforts.  The shelter cannot do this alone and like other successful communities, we need our residents’ help.”

Puppy power wins at Miami-Dade Commission

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

A nonbinding question on the Nov. 6 ballot could make a life-or-death difference to 20,000 unwanted animals each year


Spectators at Miami-Dade County Commission meetings are sternly warned against “clapping, applauding, heckling or verbal outbursts.’’

But Chairman Joe A. Martinez made an exception on Tuesday for animal advocates who could barely contain themselves after commissioners unanimously agreed to place a pet-friendly ‘‘straw vote’’ question on the Nov. 6 ballot.

“You may bark or meow,’’ he said. And some of them did.

The question asks whether Miami-Dade County residents would approve a small increase in their property taxes to keep some 20,000 cats and dogs from being euthanized. The result would have no force of law, but would indicate sentiment to the commission.

Under the proposal, the owner of a $100,000 property would pay about $10 to finance low-cost spay/neuter clinics, campaigns on responsible pet ownership, and other programs designed to slow the county’s runaway pet overpopulation rate.

In practical terms, the idea still has a long way to go before an estimated $20 million becomes available to rescuers and animal-welfare organizations that would work under the Pets’ Trust umbrella. The money would not become part of the Miami-Dade Animal Services Department’s budget.

If approved on Nov. 6, the matter would return to the commissioners, a majority of whom would have to support a general fund millage increase of 0.1079 mills, or just over 10 cents per $1,000 of value.

The earliest any Trust money would be available is November 2013.

But Trust organizer Michael Rosenberg, a Kendall businessman, said the animal groups wouldn’t wait.

“There’s the possibility of borrowing against the money to start building or retrofitting [spay/neuter] clinics’’ as soon as commissioners approve the millage increase, he said.

Lindsay Gorton, a longtime animal rescuer and Trust initiative leader, called Tuesday’s vote “the first step in a long campaign to change the way Miami-Dade treats its animals. This is a community issue that the community needs to solve.’’

For more information, visit

Read more here: Miami Herald

USDA seeks change to regulate Internet pet sales

Monday, May 21st, 2012

Associated Press

Dog breeders who skirt animal welfare laws by selling puppies over the Internet would face tighter scrutiny under a rule change proposed Thursday by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The change would subject dog owners who breed more than four females and sell the puppies electronically, by mail or over the phone to the same oversight faced by wholesale dealers as part of the Animal Welfare Act.

That law, written in 1966, set standards of care for animals bred for commercial sale and research. Retail sales were exempt from inspections under the assumption that anyone who visited the store could see whether the animals appeared healthy and cared for.

The Internet opened a new venue for puppy sales, and thousands of large-scale breeders who advertise there have not been subject to oversight or inspection. Read the rest of this entry »

Dog Bite Prevention Workshop for Parents and Kids

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

Saturday, May 12 9:00a to 2:00p
at Miami Dade College Kendall Campus, Kendall, FL
Price: Free
Phone: (305) 237-0742
Age Suitability: Kids and up
Tags: dog-bites workshop child

Come enjoy the MDC Kendall Campus’ Environmental Center and help your child learn how to avoid being bitten by an unfriendly dog.
Dog bites are preventable! Children simply need to be shown how to approach and respond to an unfamiliar dog. Trainers from the South Dade Kennel Club have joined with the Miami Dade College Environmental Center on Kendall Campus to present free dog bite prevention lessons for children and parents on Saturday, May 12th, 2012. For more information call 305-237-0905

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