All posts by dr. jane

Five Ways to Help End the Pet Abandonment Crisis

Dr Jane Bicks As uncertainty about the economy lingers, the pace of pet abandonment is on the rise. Largely attributable to the collapse of the housing market in 2007, the effects of which continue to ripple through our economy, nearly every state has seen a dramatic increase in the number of homeless animals. During this short time frame, tens of thousands of companion animals have been surrendered to rescue organizations, or worse, simply abandoned, left to fend for themselves.

You’ve probably read some of the heartrending stories: dogs left behind, locked in foreclosed homes; a box of kittens dumped in a community park; and families facing homelessness themselves surrendering to a shelter all of their pets in a moment of heartbreak. The problem is so severe that some shelters have exhausted their resources and are forced to refuse new intakes.

As a society of pet lovers, this represents an unprecedented situation in most of our lifetimes. Now, more than ever, homeless pets need our help.

Many of us want to provide assistance, but don’t know the best way to make a difference. Fortunately, there are five ways to reach out and make a difference to pets in need. More...

So You Found a Pregnant Cat…

Dr Jane BicksDid you know that cats can become mothers in their first year of life? While more and more pet parents spay their cats early in life, many good Samaritans have gotten more than they bargained for, after finding that the stray they adopted is pregnant. As a matter of fact, we here at the Life’s Abundance office found ourselves in a similar situation when a sweet little stray showed up at our door a while back. Of course, food and water were the first order of business. After a few days, she began to trust us enough to pet her. That’s when we discovered that she was pregnant. To make a long story short, we took good care of her and her kittens, and now the whole feline family lives with their new adoptive parents. If you have a pregnant cat, you may be wondering what to expect and how best to care for the expectant mother. More...

Five Plants That Can Seriously Injure Your Dog

Dr Jane Bicks

If you’re a dog lover, thoughts of summertime conjure memories of long evening strolls and outdoor recreation with your dog. In fact, you may have already started this summer to create new fond memories. Given that, the last thing you want on one of your nature walks is for your canine companion to be sidelined by an injury. Unfortunately, many pet parents don’t realize until it’s too late that there are menacing toxins lurking in the plants of both cultivated and wild landscapes. Plants that you are used to seeing in public parks, your neighborhood and perhaps even in your own backyard can lead to devastating effects. In what follows, I will review five of these dangerous plants so that you will be able to identify and avoid them when you’re with your dog. First up are four plants commonly used in landscaping that are actually toxic to canines …More...

Why Do Cats Purr?

Dr Jane BicksAs a veterinarian, I am commonly asked “Why do cats purr?” Most people believe cats purr when they are content or happy. While cats do purr when they are content, researchers attempting to uncover the answer to this 3,000-year-old mystery are finding the answer more complicated than previously thought. All domestic cats purr, as well as many wild cats, like pumas, ocelots, lions and cheetahs. Purring can occur in a variety of situations. When cats purr in the presence of other unknown cats or kittens, the behavior may serve to convey submissiveness or a friendly greeting. While it is true that cats purr contentedly while on their pet parent’s lap, they also purr when they give birth, when they are frightened, severely injured and even while dying. Because kitties clearly cannot be content in all these situations, contentment or friendliness cannot be the only reason they purr.

So why else would they purr? More...

Tips for Feline Heart Health

 

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Dr Jane Bicks When I consider what I like most about cats, I’d probably say it’s their mysterious demeanor. I never know why one of my cats will suddenly pounce on my computer keyboard, why another might hide for hours on Wednesdays, or what could possibly be going on inside the head of one who spends time shadow boxing in my bathroom. Just as their motivations and desires remain secret to us, they are also, unfortunately, masters at concealing any illnesses they might have. A cat can have a medical problem and even the most watchful owner may not realize it until the condition becomes full-blown.

An unhealthy heart is an all too common feline problem, regardless of age. The good news is that heart conditions are best treated when found early. Additionally, early detection and treatment also give felines opportunities to live relatively healthy and happy lives. All you have to do is be proactive by routinely giving your cat a quick home-health examination. Don’t worry – it’s easy, fun and can even save a life. More...

Palling Around with Pets

Bailey
This is Bailey, a high-energy two-year-old boxermix.

The Dr. Jane’s HealthyPetNet Foundation takes pride in the hard work of all its grant recipients, but the Palmetto Animal League (PAL) represents the best and noblest of rescue enterprises. PAL boasts a remarkable success rate of placement – nearly 100% – with the average time a pet is fostered at less than four months. In the true spirit of caring, nurturing and rescue, they work to avoid euthanasia at all costs. To their minds, there is no other option than to keep a dog or a cat as long as it takes to find them a forever home.

A private non-profit, the PAL organization has operated most of its 30 years using a network of volunteer foster families. Now, however, they are slowly transferring to the nearly completed construction of their first facility, the PAL’s Adoption Center. More...

Life’s Abundance and Digestive Health

I have been a pet product formulator for almost 25 years. Twelve of those years, I have been privileged to develop premium health-related products for Life's Abundance. Formulating dog and cat foods is normally a complex process; and, as a holistic veterinarian, my unique health perspective helps to inform this process. Each and every ingredient selected for a Life’s Abundance food is chosen to support all of the important bodily structures and functions. That’s why I am so proud that we have featured health-promoting direct fed microbials in Life’s Abundance Premium Health Foods for years, well ahead of competing foods. More...

Pets Make Life Healthier for their Pet Parents

Many of us agree that we should do everything within our power to make sure that our companion animals enjoy the best possible life. But did you know that simply by playing a role in your life, your furry kids could actually help you to be not only happier but healthier?

Of course you did. It’s all part of the privilege and fun of being a pet parent. What you may not know is that there’s plenty of science to back it up. As a holistic veterinarian, I’ve read so many reports regarding the health benefits associated with having companion animals, which has been accumulated over the last two decades, including numerous research studies in the U.S. and across the globe. More...

Making the World a Better Place, One Creature at a Time

Thanks to The Dr. Jane’s HealthyPetNet Foundation, an English Bulldog will enjoy shelter and quality medical care until he can be adopted into a loving, forever family.

Our charitable non-profit’s latest financial award has been given to the Southern California Bulldog Rescue which is dedicated to saving the lives of abandoned Bulldogs. Providing safe haven to these noble creatures, this rescue actively works to place Bulldogs in new homes and covers the medical expenses for more than 200 Bulldogs annually. Entirely funded through donations and operated by an all-volunteer network of dedicated Bulldog lovers, SCBR makes sure that every Bulldog that comes their way is cared for responsibly.

Officially in the non-sporting group, Bulldogs were once bred to be very aggressive to bait bulls and fight other dogs. Thankfully, this breed has been transformed through many decades of refinement and nurturing, and now most Bulldogs are friendly and eager to please. More...

The Foundation for a Better Life

I’ve spent a lifetime working to educate our customers and the public to become aware of one simple notion – that nutrition is the foundation of life.

In my years formulating products at HealthyPetNet, I’ve done my utmost to create foods, supplements and treats that help to establish and maintain this groundwork for vitality and better health.

As a holistic veterinarian, my nutritional philosophy differs from those of some competing pet food manufacturers. To understand my mindset, and why I feel so strongly that Life’s Abundance foods help to fulfill what I view as our greatest responsibility as pet parents, I’d like to share some basic information for context.

Our companion animals depend on us to provide for their every need; so, in a sense, making sure that they get the nutrition they need to not only live but to thrive is perhaps our greatest responsibility as pet parents. The food you choose to feed your beloved pet needs to supply much-needed proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals and other crucial nutrients. These vital ingredients will help them grow when they are young and to maintain health through their hopefully long adult years. More...