Albuquerque Journal Articles

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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Media – Mouth Warts in Puppies

By drjeffnichol | July 20, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Mouth Warts in Puppies
puppies wrestling

Unsightly but Rarely Dangerous Question: Do you have an opinion on what to do about papillomas in our dog Ella’s mouth and how/whether to treat with azithromycin? The dog Ella plays with and Ella both have them. The other dog’s owner wants to treat with the antibiotic for them to be able to play together again. Dr. Nichol: Oral papillomas are a blight on the good looks of young dogs unlucky enough to be infected with this contagious virus. The mess of bumps and cauliflower-like masses on their gums, lips, hard palates and throats bleed easily and may harbor smoldering…

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Media – Diabetes: A Worthy Challenge

By drjeffnichol | July 13, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Diabetes: A Worthy Challenge
cat picture

The Right Care Goes a Long Way Question: My 12 year old male cat Prancer was diagnosed with diabetes. He was immediately put on insulin injections. He has his regular blood tests and changes in the insulin dosages. He does not appear to be making very much progress. Will he show improvement in eating and drinking habits? Will he regain some weight? Will diabetes affect his life expectancy? Dr. Nichol: Prancer is not alone; there are a whole lot of diabetic kitties. Dr. Julie Stephens, board certified veterinary internist at the Veterinary Emergency and Specialty Center, has been kind enough…

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Media – Fireworks Freak-Out

By drjeffnichol | July 6, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Fireworks Freak-Out

Comfort Scared Pets with Good Management Startled by earsplitting blasts, many otherwise stable pets will endure almost continual panic this weekend. Scared dogs may hide, tremble, drool, cry or howl, and even urine soil, vomit or pass diarrhea. Many get clingy but some escape the home and risk getting hit on the road. A freaked-out dog or cat needs reassurance, but shelter from the bombardment is much better. Allow an anxious pet to find relief anywhere she feels better. A bathroom, dark closet, or an open pet crate, located away from windows and exterior walls, should be available. Unpredictable flashes…

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Media – Dog Aggressive to Movements of Family

By drjeffnichol | June 29, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Dog Aggressive to Movements of Family
aggressive corgi

Teach, Don’t Punish Question: My 2 year old female Corgi will fight any dogs or people that get too close. While she’ll let me pet her, she will not get on my lap. She will get on my husband’s lap, nuzzle his hand, and sleep (with one eye open) but if he tries to hand me the TV remote she’ll growl and snap at him. If he passes by my chair she scurries over and growls and snaps. House creaks or my husband moving anywhere in the house causes her to sound the high pitched yapping alarm. Dr. Nichol: Yikes!…

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Media – Grain-Free Could be Risky

By drjeffnichol | June 22, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Grain-Free Could be Risky
dog eating

Regular High Quality Pet Food is Best Question: Dr. Nichol, what are your thoughts on grain-free diets for dogs? Dr. Nichol: Well, I thought you’d never ask. Considered a fad diet by many, grain-free has been dogged by controversy from the get-go. There are a small number of dogs suspected of gluten intolerance who’ve improved with these special foods but we have little in the way of research supporting their value outside of this small subset. Information from the FDA, on the other hand, shows a link between grain-free pet foods and a potentially fatal disease of the heart muscle…

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Media – Feline Culture Clash

By drjeffnichol | June 15, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Feline Culture Clash
cat fight

Mutual Disdain Likely to Fester & Explode Question: Apparently this cat found us. She is part of Community Cat Program here in El Paso. She is not feral; she is more of a stray and very social with humans. She’s around 5. We are trying to acclimate her to an indoor environment. Our older cat is 13. She is being territorial. There is no serious confrontation, mostly growling, hissing, and chasing. The new cat “Baby” gets stimulated easily. For correcting we’ve been using the water bottle, with treats when she is good. Dr. Nichol: Foisting a younger free-spirit on an…

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Media – Eye Discharge & Thyroid Tumor

By drjeffnichol | June 8, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Eye Discharge & Thyroid Tumor
cat with eye discharge

This Senior Cat could Feel Better Question: The eye discharge in my 15 year old male cat has slightly diminished with Neopolydex ophthalmic suspension. A senior profile exam at Animal Humane revealed a benign thyroid lump said to be common in older cats. He does not stroke his eye with his paw. Can pain be ruled out? If it could be expensive to treat, is there any harm in letting it go untreated for life? Dr. Nichol: Your cat didn’t reach age 15 by accident; you’ve been good to him. His eye discharge is uncomfortable and it’s a red flag…

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Media – Brute Fear

By drjeffnichol | June 1, 2020 | Comments Off on Media – Brute Fear
scared dog

Women yes; men no Question: I just watched your YouTube video on dog PTSD. I realize that my dog’s trigger is men. We’ve had her three days and she is absolutely terrified of my husband. We don’t know her history and she is just over one year old. I’m wondering if my husband is causing her to relive her trauma and if she may be better suited for an all-female household. Dr. Nichol: I’m sad that your new dog is terrified. It’s hard to imagine but some pets have been abused. Dogs who have suffered that way typically associate fear…

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