Weekly article archive

The following questions and answers have appeared in my weekly column in the Albuquerque Journal since July, 1996. Each week a new one is added. You'll find information on the physical and behavioral maladies of dogs and cats and a few other species too. I invite you to use the search feature to find the specific answer that you and your pet need.

Media – Injured Strays – Be Hopeful


The doctors, staff, and volunteers at Albuquerque’s Animal Welfare Department do what it takes for the homeless pets they treat but post-operative recovery is sometimes harder than the procedure itself. It can be tough on everybody. My work with the Placencia Humane Society in Belize put my skills to the test. We came well equipped…

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Media – Springtime Pet Toxins


Be Careful this Easter Everybody loves springtime flowers and plants but some buds, bulbs, leaves, and seeds can be unsafe for our pets. Swallowing any plant material can cause a dog or cat to vomit or have diarrhea so the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center has provided a list of potentially dangerous plants. If you…

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Media – Wascally Wabbit Shredding Shrubs

Rabbit image

Foil Foliage Filching Question: I have a rabbit living in my front yard and eating the leaves off my evergreen shrubs that are about 30 years old. He’s eaten all of the bottom leaves and I see him standing trying to reach the upper leaves. I have tried shooing him away every time I see…

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Media – Jolted Cat

image of sleeeping cat

Feel Better; Sleep Well Question: My cat will be fast asleep, then she wakes up suddenly and flies out of the spot she was in and acts very terrified. Is she having night terrors? Dr. Nichol: Your cat may be having a sleep disturbance but we don’t want tunnel vision. Her terror, as she is…

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Media – Freaked-out by Strangers & Sick when Alone

Australian Cattle Dog

The Mind-Body Connection is Worth Investing Lulu is a sweet, 2 year old Australian cattle dog who was adopted from a shelter just 2 months before I met her. She had itchy skin and a rather delicate gut. She’d already started eating a special diet and was taking an anti-itch medication called Apoquel. Lulu landed…

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Media – Chronic Diarrhea & Vomiting

French bulldog

Help Faster, Better, Cheaper Retching and vomiting or straining to pass diarrhea is pretty miserable. Some dogs struggle often with these symptoms. When does it become too much? You can try different diets or give probiotics, antibiotics, or supplements and still make little progress. Fouling the living space is not natural canine behavior. The stress…

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Media – Feline Fights in a Fishbowl

calico cats

Peace & Privacy Question: I need advice on displaced aggression in my 2 cats that are normally very loving to each other. It started after a neighborhood cat started appearing in my back yard. It’s gotten much worse with them fighting and I’ve tried the Feliway plug- ins. Dr. Nichol: Your cats have done just…

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Media – Facing Feline Flatulence & Faucet Foibles


A Fecal Exam may Reveal the Cause Question: My 5 month old adopted kitten is Pimienta “Pimi” and she is such a good girl. I waited for a kitten that chose me and it is the best thing I have done because she is so cute and she sees me as her mummy (I think).…

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Media – Horses & Asses

Horse and donkey

Simplify the Politics Question: We adopted a jenny to be a buddy for our elderly horse. At first she was happy to share food, but with time and confidence she has become rather bossy. I have to lock her out of the shelter at feeding time or she would aggressively devour the horse’s food. When…

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