Good Samaritan Veterinary Hospital Newsletter


The News from Good Sam                                                January 4, 2017

Say "Cheese", Rio!
The Good Sam Welcome Back Special - We understand how difficult it can be to keep up with all of the demands on your time and how quickly that time seems to fly by. Start the New Year out right by catching your pet(s) up on their wellness exams! We are offering one free exam per household for one existing patient who hasn't been seen in over 18 months (prior to June 2015).
This offer expires on February 28th, 2017.
Set up an appointment today!

It has been COLD outside! While it doesn't snow here in the Bay Area, it has been getting down to the 30's at night. We wanted to offer a bit of advice on keeping your pets safe in cold weather:
  • We strongly recommend keeping your pets, especially cats, indoors overnight. If your pet stays outside all the time, he/she needs a warm dry shelter with plenty of insulation and warm bedding.
  • Cats tend to tuck themselves up under the hoods of cars or in wheel wells to keep warm. It's a good idea to thump on your hood or beep your horn prior to starting your engine on cold mornings.
  • Just as a vehicle can turn into an oven in the summer, it can become a freezer in the winter. Never leave your pet in the car unattended.
  • Cold weather can be especially difficult for our senior pets. Call for an appointment if you notice lethargy, stiffness, or pain.

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14100 E. 14th Street

San Leandro, California 94578


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A Year of Wellness - Part One
When your pet gets sick, your first thought is to contact your veterinarian. Our caring doctors are ready and willing to help your pet recover, but keeping your pet from getting ill in the first place is just as important to us. To catch and prevent health problems, we suggest a pet wellness plan. Keeping your pet healthy involves a partnership between you and our doctors. In general, following the care tips below will help keep your pet feeling fabulous and help us to catch health issues in a timely fashion.
Do this daily:
  • Pet your pet. This might seem like a no-brainer, but interacting with your pet at least once a day is so important that it tops our list! Dog owners know that it's nearly impossible to ignore them. Cats on the other hand tend to interact on their own terms. Both cat and dog owners should be thinking about providing times for play and affection to keep your pets active and stimulated. Another benefit of petting is that it gives you a chance to check your pet out. Feel the ribs and consider whether your pet has put on weight. Check for lumps and be aware of any funny odors. Older cats often require more frequent nail trims so check their paws. There's no need to do all of this every time you interact with your pet, but once a week is smart. Follow up with Good Sam if you notice any issues.
  • Nourish your pet. Obviously your pet needs to eat each day, and they should always have access to clean water. But specific nutritional choices can weigh heavily on your pet's health --literally, since obesity is a real problem in both cats and dogs. Speak with us about which pet foods are best for your furry kids, and remember that people food is never appropriate.
  • Keep your pet active. Lack of consistent exercise leads to obesity and deconditioning. Overweight pets are at increased risk for many serious health problems including diabetes, high blood pressure, and arthritis. A deconditioned pet is more prone to injury.
  • Educate your pet. Pets need structure and thrive when they know what to expect. Many issues can be avoided if time is spent reviewing basic obedience and teaching proper behaviors for both dogs and cats.
  • Watch for abnormal behaviors. Pets won't tell you when they are sick or in pain, but they will show you. Pay attention to an increase or decrease in water consumption, house-soiling accidents, a reluctance to engage in favorite activities, excessive sleeping, loss of appetite or a reluctance to eat, an onset of aggressive behavior...these can all be signs of possible health problems. If you know what "normal" is for your pet, you will notice when their behavior changes, and that gives us the opportunity to catch health issues early. It all comes down to paying attention!
We hope you find this information useful. Please call us if you have any questions or concerns. Next week we'll be talking about what you can do on a weekly, monthly, and annual basis to promote great health for your beloved pets.

Rainy Weather Tips for Pets

With all this recent rain, and more on the way, we'd like to take the opportunity to present some rainy day tips and activities for you and your cooped up pets!
  • If your dogs are afraid of the wind and rain, be patient, go slow and offer plenty of reassurance. Be sure that they have a sheltered area, or provide an umbrella so they can do their business in comfort. Doggy rain-gear is also an option, but isn't always effective. Dogs especially hate getting rain in their eyes. Use positive reinforcement by giving high-quality treats when they are successful.
  • If you have outdoor cats, or silly cats who don't come in out of the rain, be sure that they have plenty of sheltered places to ride out the worst of the weather.
  • Outdoor dogs need to be provided with shelter, ideally a warm and dry doghouse. If your dog is strictly outdoors, you may want to consider boarding him during stormy weather.
  • Keep old towels by the door for a quick rub down when pets come back inside. Old towels or blankets are also great for protecting furniture from wet, muddy paws.
  • Keep your cooped up pets entertained by playing fetch down the hallway or stairs (lots of cats love to fetch too!), hiding treats around the house for them to sniff out, or playing a rousing game of tag or chase the string. Use small treats, or pieces of treats when playing, and if they've had a lot of treats, plan on a lighter meal that day.
  • Have a doggie play-date! Call your dog's best friend and have her and her person over to provide a break in the monotony.
  • Doggie Daycare is another option for offering your pooch a way to run his sillies off on a rainy day.
  • Outdoor and feral cats often curl up under car hoods and wheel wells on cold, rainy days. Be sure to bang on the hood of your car as a warning before starting your engine during the winter months.
We sure hope this article provides you with some useful ideas for "riding out the storm"!   


Good Sam Welcome
 Back Special!

Start the New Year out right by catching your pet(s) up on their wellness exams. We are offering one free exam per household for one existing patient who hasn't been seen in over 18 months (prior to June 2015). This offer expires on February 28th, 2017Call today to book an appointment.  (510) 357-8574

Offer Expires: February 28, 2017