Archive for November, 2011

Thank you to everyone who stopped by the Avivagen Woofstock booth and filled out a ballot!

Read Full Post »

From all of us at Avivagen Animal Health, we’d like to wish our American friends (the two- and four-legged variety) a very Happy Thanksgiving!


What are you thankful for??

Read Full Post »

Well folks, the verdict is in and it’s official:  this past weekend’s Winter Woofstock 2011 was simply WOOFTASTIC!

Pet parents, accompanied by their favourite festive pooches, lined up extra early to get in to this annual event which took place in downtown Toronto at the Direct Energy Centre.  This year’s Woofstock boasted several thousand square feet of canine couture, puppy pleasures and other doggy delights.  Bottom line? If you’re a dog lover, then Woofstock is the place to be.

As many of you know, this was Avivagen’s first appearance at one of the Woofstock events and we hope it was just the first of many.  Graham Burton, one of the researchers behind Oximunol Chewables active ingredient, OxC-beta, joined me bright and early Saturday morning as we sniffed and belly-rubbed our way through the tail-waggin’ crowds.  From pugs to poodles; from dachsunds to danes, there were dogs of just about every size, shape and colour.

It was so great to get out and meet all the wonderful pet parents and the endless parade of adorable dogs made the day even better!

Thank you so much to everyone who came out and took the time to stop by our booth to say hello.  We hope you enjoyed Winter Woofstock and we look forward to seeing you and your pet again soon 🙂

And if you filled out a ballot to win one of our More Zoom or Less Groom gift baskets stay tuned…..!  The winners will be announced on Friday

Read Full Post »

Winter Woofstock 2011 is coming to Toronto and Avivagen will be there!  Be sure to drop by booth #218 to say hello, enter to win one of our fabulous Zoom & Groom Gift Baskets and help support a great local shelter.

OXIMUNOL WOOFSTOCK SPECIAL: Though normally available exclusively through veterinarians, we will be selling bottles of 5mg and 20mg Oximunol Chewables at a special Woofstock Weekend promotional price!

We can’t wait to see you there!

Read Full Post »

Dog arthritis

As your dog begins to age, he may start to show signs of stiff joints and muscles.

Arthritis affects one in five adult dogs, and is the most common source of chronic pain found in dogs.

Arthritis is when the protective cartilage of the joints breaks down. Common areas affected are the hips, knees, shoulders, wrists, neck and elbows. Normally, arthritis is simply caused by the wear and tear of a dogʼs everyday life.

There are a number of symptoms to look out for when dealing with arthritis. These symptoms include:

 Sleeping often
– Decreased interest in activity or play
– Hesitancy to jump or climb stairs
– Favoring a limb, or limb lameness
– Difficulty in sitting or standing

If you notice any of these symptoms, your dog may have arthritis. Once arthritis has been properly diagnosed, there are a number of home remedies available to help ease the pain your dogʼs joints.

Apply Heat

Applying a warm compress to your dogʼs joints will help to ease the pain. Heat will penetrate deep into the muscle to the joint for relief. Just be cautious with heat pads, as you donʼt want to burn your dog.

Keep Him Warm

This is especially important on cold or wet days. Cold weather may cause the joints to be especially stiff or swollen. Add an extra blanket to his bed or let him sleep inside the house. Adding an extra pillow will also help keep him comfortable and ease pain in the joints.

Raise Food and Water Dishes

This is especially important if your dog has arthritis in the neck or shoulders. Bending down may cause tension and pain, so raising his food and water dishes will help him to eat pain free.

You may notice a weight loss during arthritis, and the pain to eat may be the source of this.

Keep Your Floors Slip-Free

Your dog may struggle when walking on hard wood floors. If you notice this, consider getting a rug for common areas he plays or rests.

Using different cleaning products on the floors may also help.

Massage Therapy

You can do this at home or take your dog to a professional. Massages provide relief for sore, inflamed joints and will help to loosen these areas up.


Exercise should be regular, but not too strenuous. If your dog wants to turn and go back home after a short walk, let him. The key is constant exercise, but keeping it light and short. Swimming is a great form of exercise as well.

Weight control

A healthy diet is extremely important for your dog during arthritis. Getting rid of excess weight is beneficial for your dog, as he wonʼt have to carry any more weight around on his joints.

Home remedies along with veterinarian treatment and proper diet will help to ease pain for your dog during arthritis. The number one thing to remember is that your dog cannot tell you what is wrong with him. It is up to dog owners to watch for possible signs and keep up with regular veterinarian visits for a healthy and comfortable life.

You can learn more about arthritis causes, symptoms, treatment options and home remedies at www.dogarthritisresource.com

Read Full Post »

GUEST BLOGGER: Heather Kalinowski of Trupanion pet insurance

Arthritis is a condition that affects many pets. Just like with humans, the joints in an animal’s body can start to deteriorate and swell with age, causing pain and immobility. But again, just like with humans, this doesn’t mean an animal’s quality of life has to suffer. There are treatment options that will help take the pain out of the aging process.


What is arthritis?

Arthritis is a condition caused by the inflammation of the joints in the body. It usually develops in older pets after years of daily wear and tear of the joints and is simply caused by age. However, it can also be caused by an infection in the joint or trauma to the joint.


Signs and symptoms

It can be hard to spot the signs of arthritis because the condition develops slowly over a period of time. Animals may start making small changes to their normal routine in order to make up for the stiffness they feel. For example, they may start to take longer to get out of bed or may stop jumping up on the couch as normal. Eventually, it will become apparent that they are having a hard time getting around and that each movement is causing them pain.


Treatment options and cost

Once the pain has become apparent, it is time to see a veterinarian. The vet will conduct some tests to make sure the arthritis diagnosis is correct (this may include X-rays, blood tests, and a fluid aspiration) and then will develop a treatment plan. Depending on the severity of the condition and the age of the pet, treatment may consist of daily medication and dietary changes or surgery. Sometimes a holistic approach, such as acupuncture, will be encouraged.

The cost of any of these treatment options can be expensive. With veterinary medicine seeing advances every day, there are more and more treatment options available, but with an increased cost. Even just the traditional tests used to diagnose arthritis can be pricey.

How pet insurance can help

Pet insurance can give dog and cat owners the peace of mind that cost will not be an issue when deciding the best course of treatment for their pet. If their pet’s particular circumstance could be best solved by a total hip replacement, adding years to the pet’s life, the pet owner doesn’t want to have to decline because the $2,000 price tag doesn’t fit into the family budget. Pet insurance takes the financial burden out of the equation. Here are some real-life examples of an arthritis diagnosis and how pet insurance helped with cost.

Macks, a 4-year-old mixed breed dog
Cost of treatment: $1,062.26
Reimbursement amount: $956.03


Winnie, a 6-year-old Boxer
Cost of treatment: $676.60
Reimbursement amount: $608.94


Joey, a 5-year-old mixed breed dog
Cost of treatment: $746.77
Reimbursement amount: $672.09


Bailey, a 4-year-old mixed breed dog
Cost of treatment: $984.73
Reimbursement amount: $886.26


All of these pets received hospitalization, anesthetic, X-rays, and medication to treat their arthritis. Some are still receiving treatment today. But their owners never had to worry about the cost because they had pet insurance to serve as their financial safety net.

While it can be quite sad to see a beloved pet develop arthritis due to age, the silver lining is that this condition can be treated in a way that prolongs the pet’s quality of life. And as veterinary care continues to see advancements, we can expect to see even better ways to keep our aging pets happy and healthy for longer than ever.

Heather Kalinowski is the proud mom of two fur-kids – an Italian Greyhound named Ava and a Spaniel mix named Jackson. She writes about pet health issues and fun pet stories at Trupanion pet insurance


Read Full Post »