Albuquerque Journal Articles

Media – Feline Windbag

By drjeffnichol | January 20, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Feline Windbag
cat meowing

Big Appetite? Weight Loss? Question: What can I do with my cat’s incessant meowing? Myrtle is 18 years old. She’s able to hop up on the furniture. First thing in the morning, she starts around 6 a.m. and will keep it up. I’ve tried ignoring it, and other times shushing her to no avail. She will yowl, calling out for me and when I answer, she comes to find me. When I feed her it’s like a frenzied meow – hurry up and put the dish down. I have Feliway plugged in but she still is anxious. Dr. Nichol: Cats…

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Media – Cat with Swollen Ear Flap

By drjeffnichol | January 13, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Cat with Swollen Ear Flap
Sphinx cat

Mites or Other Infections are the Primary Cause Question: We took our cat to the veterinarian due to noticing his ear was down and swollen. The doctor reassured us his ear will go back down in time. He did tell us Maurice has ear mites. Once that problem is gone will that help the process of his ear going back to normal? Dr. Nichol: Maurice’s ear flap, also known as a pinna or auricle, has come to resemble a sopapilla because of his scratching and head shaking from those &%#! ear mites. That self-trauma has damaged capillaries causing leaked blood…

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Media – Puppy Wigs-Out on Leash

By drjeffnichol | January 6, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Puppy Wigs-Out on Leash
puppy with leash

Allow the Little Ones to Drag the Leash at Home Question: I have a 4 month old cavachon puppy, adorable, playful, and lovable. Her name is Joy. On leash walks she emits the cry of a banshee, bucking wild bronco, putting on the brakes, and rolling. No amount of patient standing or treat offered helped, cuddled and held her to no avail and finally lying dead weight I carried her inside. I’ve never had a dog react this way. Dr. Nichol: A cavachon is a cross between a Cavalier King Charles spaniel and a bichon frise. This isn’t the only…

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Media – Wigged-Out on the Road

By drjeffnichol | December 30, 2019 | Comments Off on Media – Wigged-Out on the Road
photo of dog riding in car

Treat the Cause Question: Our two-year-old Golden retriever is totally unhappy traveling in any vehicle, including our motorhome; which is a shame because we travel a lot. We tried giving him a tranquilizer, but then he was just as anxious because he felt so horrible from the medication and still hated the movement of the motorhome. Simba is our fifth Golden and we have never encountered this problem. Dr. Nichol: Simba is in good company; lots of dogs freak-out riding in a car. You can help your boy feel better but it will be necessary to treat the underlying cause…

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Media – Oxygen Hose Abuse

By drjeffnichol | December 23, 2019 | Comments Off on Media – Oxygen Hose Abuse
cat sitting on sofa

Reduce Temptation; Cat Chewing Done Right Question: My cat Bella Lynne is 3years old and she chews on oxygen hoses. I need help. Dr. Nichol: Cats are predators who need to stimulate the specialized nerve receptors in their faces. The chewy texture of your oxygen hoses is irresistible to Bella Lynne. Set her up to succeed by making them less appealing while offering a compelling alternative. Ask the butcher for fresh beef or pork bones with tags of meat still attached. Rawhide chews softened in a bowl of water are another feline favorite. Avoid poultry bones, please. Why not bones…

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Media – The Mouse Diet

By drjeffnichol | December 16, 2019 | Comments Off on Media – The Mouse Diet
image of cat playing with mouse

Or Purchase the Right Cat Food The raging debate on healthy cat diets continues. Dry vs. canned, high protein or grain free? You could go to the mountaintop and consult Google, that wizened guru. But instead I’ll share current research which, like all good science, continues to shift. Obesity is epidemic for our short eared, round headed pets. As they expand their girth their diabetes risk skyrockets, not to mention joint disease. Diet matters and so does lifestyle. Cats are behaviorally and physically programmed to spend their days lurking, listening, and sniffing for prey. In nature they only catch 1…

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Media – Bury dem Bones

By drjeffnichol | December 9, 2019 | Comments Off on Media – Bury dem Bones

Risky Chew Toys Question: Our large and lovable but frisky black Lab gets mischievous once in a while. Taking him for walks does wonders; the first half of the trip is letting him ‘mark’ things, sniff and do a little browsing. To keep him further occupied, we got a large Nylabone. We find that he’ll delve into it with vigorous chewing, noise, slobber, etc. outside. Then the bone is nowhere to be found and he has dirt on his nose. What is the purpose of dogs burying bones? Dr. Nichol- Capable of enduring the harshest conditions dogs are predators on…

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Media – Alien Feline Freak-Out

By drjeffnichol | December 2, 2019 | Comments Off on Media – Alien Feline Freak-Out
photo of cats fighting

Can New Cat Succeed? Question: I have 2 other cats and since I’ve brought the new guy home it is a divided household. My 2 established cats are terrified of this guy or just don’t like him. They hide and don’t come out. They hiss and growl. I have to lock up the new cat so the other cats can come out to eat. Now they are even too scared to eat like they are on edge and very stressed. One of the cats has even started using the bathroom out of the litter box. Dr. Nichol: Established indoor kitties…

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Media – Holidays Happen

By drjeffnichol | November 25, 2019 | Comments Off on Media – Holidays Happen

Keep it Safe I can’t wait for Thanksgiving: Family, turkey, pie, and political football. Well, maybe for you and me. Keep a close eye on your pets. Tense body postures around visitors or startling at sudden noises, hiding, freezing with ears flattened, the head low, and the tail tucked are important clues. Scared dogs may lick their lips and yawn. Stressed cats might over-groom. Pets need a break from the action. Hide boxes for kitties and out-of the-way resting areas for dogs will allow them to sit out the dogmatic discussions. Food toys loaded with canned or dry food will…

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Media – Silent Suffering Cats

By drjeffnichol | November 18, 2019 | Comments Off on Media – Silent Suffering Cats

Chronic Pain can Dog your Cat Do you know anyone “of a certain age” with chronic pain? Most people don’t keep it a secret. Dogs don’t suffer silently either. You’ll notice them limping, slow to jump, or crying when they get up. But cats don’t say a word. If you think they get a pass on pain you would be wrong. Cats are genetically programmed to hide their vulnerabilities. Rather than belly-aching to their bridge club they get small and quiet to avoid the notice of predators. Never mind that hungry coyotes don’t lurk among your house plants, ready to…

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