Albuquerque Journal Articles

Media – Circling, Head Tilt

By drjeffnichol | September 28, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Circling, Head Tilt
small dog

Wait & See? Question: My dog is 4 years old, weighs 4 kilograms, no fever, his name is Dodo. Yesterday, he could not go straight but circling with his head tilted towards one side, but he eats well (we’ve been hand feeding him). Today is the second day of this syndrome. My family could notice small improvement as he could go straight in small distance, but we are now very worried and afraid of his situation. Can you tell us what is going wrong with our dog? We love him very much! Dr. Nichol: Dodo’s problem may be serious. An…

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Media – Fear-Free Cats at the Doctor’s Office

By drjeffnichol | September 21, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Fear-Free Cats at the Doctor’s Office
cat looking out

Here’s How to Keep a Cranky Kitty Calm Does your cat hate going to the veterinary clinic? I get it. Lots of cats freak-out with anything away from home. Despite the safety and trust you’ve nurtured in your cat she is a hunter who can also be hunted. A white coated stranger in a funky smelling place reaching into her carrier- the perception of threat is real. Clever cats learn to dodge this ordeal, or at least postponed it. By hiding their symptoms, like reducing activity to disguise breathing difficulties or jumping less because their joints hurt, they avoid appearing…

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Media – Thyroids Gone Wild

By drjeffnichol | September 14, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Thyroids Gone Wild

Feline Seniors Need Gentle Care Tony, a grey tabby cat pushing 15, has been ours since he was just a baby. He and I share the belief that we’re still kids but, oddly, he’s developed an age-related problem. Doing my best to cheat the reality of aging I’ve examined him and regularly submitted lab profiles. About a year ago his thyroid screen, called the T4, started to creep up. I’ve seen a lot of this during my career. Hyperthyroidism affects about 10% of cats over age 9. Feline hyperthyroidism is caused by slowly growing benign tumors of the thyroid glands,…

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Media – Brushing for Safety

By drjeffnichol | September 7, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Brushing for Safety

Dogs like Tasty Paste Question: Just dropped off my 10 year old Schipperke for teeth cleaning. Sounds easy, but I worry about the anesthetic. I promise to keep her teeth clean from now on! So how often should I brush them? Dr. Nichol: Caring for your Schipperke’s health – every bit of it – will keep her feeling better and living longer. If you’re patient you can teach her to enjoy tooth brushing with toothpaste that’s made-for-dogs. C.E.T. Enzymatic Toothpaste can be safely swallowed; in fact, that’s part of the bargain. Your pupster can choose from poultry, malt, beef, seafood,…

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Media – Feline Travel Terror

By drjeffnichol | August 31, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Feline Travel Terror
cat in a carrier

Good Management & Helpful Meds Question: We have a cross-country move at the end of the summer and are curious what recommendations you have for moving with kitties. We have two (11yrs and 4yrs), both of whom we adopted while living here in Georgia. Now we’re moving back to my home state of Minnesota. The cats do not enjoy the short car rides to our local veterinary clinic and likely won’t be thrilled with the 17 hour drive. Dr. Nichol: Cats can be vocal and highly stressed car travelers. “Are we there yet?” You know the drill. But it’s the…

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Media – Confusion & Indoor Whizzing

By drjeffnichol | August 24, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Confusion & Indoor Whizzing
shih tzus

Teach with Reliable Structure Question: My two Shih Tzus are sisters, 4 years old, adopted last year. They are usually potty trained but I did have to replace hallway carpet to tile. They don’t know how to ask to go out and I have trouble being intuitive all the time. They are shy and not playing or affectionate. They are much better than when I got them however. How can I speed this up? Dr. Nichol: Your girls are doing the best they can with what they know. Their lack of interest in playing and interacting with you is a…

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Media – Rickety Felines

By drjeffnichol | August 17, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Rickety Felines
old cat arthritis

Older Joints – Never Assume Question: I read that most older cats have arthritis. My 14 year old female spayed cat does not show any overt signs of pain. She is a little overweight (working on it) but is otherwise healthy. I’m planning on getting ramps and stairs for her, a more accessible litter box, and she already has heated beds. Should I ask my veterinarian about putting her on a daily pain medication even though she doesn’t seem to be in pain? Dr. Nichol: Your natural empathy benefits everyone around you. The stairs and ramp will make it easier…

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Media – Warts on Older Dogs

By drjeffnichol | August 10, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Warts on Older Dogs
cockapoo in a shirt

Diagnose First, then Decide if Treatment is Necessary Question: I have a cock-a-poo with several warts. Our veterinarian said to use antibiotic cream but that didn’t help. He did not want to remove them because she is 14. What about using thuja or multi vitamins? Dr. Nichol: Everybody seems to get lumpy and bumpy with age. Miss America, the Nichol family dog, has a few beauty accents. We don’t mention them to her, she would only fret. It’s my job to worry. An accurate diagnosis always matters. Dr. Rebecca Mount, board certified dermatologist at the Veterinary Emergency and Specialty Center,…

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Media – Alien Invasion

By drjeffnichol | August 3, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Alien Invasion
Old cat lying in sun

Can Old Cats & Young Puppies Mix? Question: We have a 15 year old cat who is well, happy and calm. In September we will receive a Golden-Doodle puppy from a family member. How can we introduce a good sized, bouncy puppy to our lovable old girl? Dr. Nichol: This could be a tall order – unless your feline senior had the right childhood friends. Appropriate socialization of kittens sets their fuzzy little brains up to permanently accept species they friended early in life. The “sensitive period” is a fixed window from 2-7 weeks age. If your cat shared her…

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Media – He’s Mine! She’s Mine!

By drjeffnichol | July 27, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – He’s Mine! She’s Mine!
dogs competing for attention

Dogs Competing for Attention Question: How to help with competition between dogs for human attention? Rosebud acts like she owns me and Helmut (new dog) acts like he owns my husband. How to reduce this behavior? Dr. Nichol: Rosebud and Helmut believe that access to their leaders is limited. What? Why that’s ridiculous! Love and affection for your dogs is boundless – from the human perspective. But they think differently. Their species has scraped by for thousands of years believing that resources, like food and interactions with leaders, are scarce. Rosebud and Helmut are genetically programmed to assume that their…

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