Owning a Dog Benefits People with Cardiovascular Disease

The American Heart Association recently published a study on the health benefits of dog ownership for people at risk for heart attack and stroke.

According to the study, dog ownership is associated with a 33% lower risk of death for heart attack survivors who live alone, as compared to non-dog owners.

Dog-owning stroke survivors who live alone have a 27% reduced risk of death compared to those who don’t own a dog.

Dog ownership has been found to be associated with a 24% reduced risk of all-cause mortality (31% reduced risk for heart attack and stroke).

Why is there such a significant reduction in mortality?  The American Heart Association points to two key factors related to dog ownership: companionship/social connection and increased physical activity, both of which can lead to improved health and lowered blood pressure.

The researchers found that among heart attack and stroke survivors, the risk of death was lower for dog owners than even for people living with a spouse or child!

Check out this video on the study to learn more:

 

Ohio State’s “Honoring the Bond” Program Helps Grieving Pet Owners

The hardest part about sharing your life with a companion animal is when the time comes to say goodbye.  The loss of a beloved pet is difficult for all pet parents.  Luckily, there are some helpful support resources out there, including Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center’s Honoring the Bond program.

Honoring the Bond not only helps clients of the Veterinary Medical Center (providing on-site social work services) but also pet owners everywhere.

You can visit their website and download information resources on pet loss topics such as:

  • Deciding on when and why to consider euthanasia
  • Coping with the loss of a pet
  • Helping children handle the death of a family pet
  • Do other animals in the home grieve the loss of a companion?

Ohio State has also compiled a great suggested reading list on topics related to pet loss, including making end of life decisions and children’s books about the loss of a pet.  You can also find a list of hotlines and online sites that support grieving pet owners.

 

Gifts for Animal Lovers at the FACE Store!

Hey, did you know that we have an online shop?

We sell a variety of cute animal-themed items through a partnership with Threadless.  35-45% of all sales go to the FACE Foundation and our work to save the lives of pets in need of critical veterinary care.

We carry a wide range of clothing and accessories that feature artwork of a few of the adorable pets we have helped save.

All products are on sale until 11/27/19, 9 p.m. CT, so take a look!

 

 

Dogs Help in Conservation of Endangered Species

As if we needed further proof that dogs are awesome, here’s a story about how specially trained dogs (and their sensitive noses) are helping conservationists study and protect endangered species in the wild.

According to an article on the CNN website, dogs are being trained to accompany researchers out into the field and help them identify the scents of endangered animals and their droppings.

Tracking droppings, also called scat, can tell researchers where endangered animals are living, how many of them are around, what they are eating, as well as parasite infection and overall health status.  This tracking is also much less stressful for the animals than trapping.

These conservation dogs have worked on many endangered animal studies, including ones for foxes, wolves, cougars, bobcats, otters, minks, ferrets, and more!  Some new training session are now focusing on teaching the dogs to track endangered lizards.

Interested in learning more?  Check out the website for the organization Working Dogs for Conservation.

 

November is Pet Diabetes Awareness Month

Diabetes is a health issue that can affect dogs and cats as well as us humans.  Did you know that 1 in 300 dogs and 1 in 230 cats in the U.S. have diabetes?

November is Pet Diabetes Month, the perfect time to find out if your pet is at risk for diabetes.

You can take this diabetes risk quiz, for both dogs and cats.

Diabetes tends to be more common in cats than dogs.  And also in older pets that are overweight.

Managing your pet’s weight is key to preventing diabetes.  Studies have shown that high protein-low carb diets are the best approach.  Some pets have even been able to go off insulin with a change in diet.

Regular exercise is also key to diabetes prevention…and your pet’s overall good health.

While there is no cure, your pet’s diabetes can be managed and treated with a combination of medication, regular monitoring and veterinary checkups, and of course a healthy diet and regular exercise.

Be sure to talk to your vet if you have questions about diabetes in your dog or cat.