March is Pet Poison Prevention Month, and at Signature Veterinary Services, we’re using the opportunity to help educate our clients on the best ways to protect their pets from poisonous and toxic substances that can put their health and wellbeing in harm’s way.
Unfortunately, there are countless substances in and around our own homes that are poisonous and toxic to pets. Consider the following tips to pet-poison-proof your home and prevent pet poisoning.

5 Tips to Prevent Pet Poisoning

1. Choose Safe House and Garden Plants

Several of the most popular plants and flowers for growing indoors and outdoors present considerable poisoning hazards to pets. All kinds of lilies, for example, are extremely dangerous for cats. Even just a sniff of lily pollen can make a cat seriously ill. Check this list of toxic and non-toxic plants from the ASPCA.

2. Don't Give Your Pet People Foods

Before feeding your pet a human’s food, be certain it’s safe. Several people foods are actually highly toxic for pets. Some of the most common toxic foods for pets include chocolate, xylitol (artificial sweetener), alliums (the onion/garlic plant family), yeast dough, certain nuts, avocados, and grapes and raisins.

3. Store Household Cleaners and Other Chemicals Out of Reach

Household chemicals contain highly toxic and poisonous ingredients. Store these in a safe place where your pets can’t reach them.

4. Safely Store All Medications and Supplements

Prescription drugs, over-the-counter-medications, and supplements intended for human consumption are dangerous and toxic for pets.

5. Safely Store All Pet Medications

Although they’re intended for your pet’s consumption, eating a whole bottle of pet meds at once could be extremely dangerous. Store these – especially treat-flavored pills – out of your pet’s reach.

What to Do If Your Pet Ingests Poison

If you suspect your pet has ingested a toxic or poisonous substance, time is of the essence and you must take action right away to protect your pet’s health and limit the permanent damage that the poison can do.
For more information about pet-proofing your home and creating a pet poison action plan, we welcome you to contact Signature Veterinary Services in San Diego today.

New Year's Resolutions for You and Your Pet

It’s tough to believe, but 2021 is on its way out, and 2022 is approaching swiftly. If you’ve been too busy keeping up with the hustle and bustle of the holidays to think about your New Year’s resolutions, we have a list of resolution ideas that are perfect for you and your pet. Pick one or keep them all!

7 New Year's Resolutions You Can Keep With Your Pet

1. Always Measure Your Pet's Portions

Pet obesity is a serious problem, and it’s on the rise. It can lead to a whole host of health problems that can reduce a pet’s quality of life and shorten your pet’s lifespan. A healthy weight starts with a healthy, properly portioned diet. Keep a resolution to measure your pet’s food at every feeding, and make it easy by keeping a measuring cup in your pet’s food container.

2. Get More Exercise

Another way to combat obesity while promoting general good health for both you and your pet is to get more exercise together. Head out for more daily walks – or finally, get in a routine of walking every day. Just be sure to start slowly and work your way up to longer, faster, more strenuous activities, especially if you and your pet have been rather sedentary as of late.

3. Learn Pet First Aid

Find a local pet first aid class that could save your pet’s or another pet’s life during an emergency. You can learn how to treat wounds and administer CPR to dogs and cats.

4. Learn New Tricks

Sign yourself and your pet up for some obedience classes to improve your skills working together while enriching both of your lives. In addition to learning some new tricks, you both might make some new friends, too.

5. Play More

Play is important for the mental health of pets. Make a point to pick up some new, exciting toys and schedule some playtime with your pets indoors or outdoors.

6. Update Identification

Make sure that your pet’s ID tags are readable and that the information is current. Also, take a moment to log in to your pet’s microchip provider to make sure your subscription is paid and your pet’s information is current. If your pet doesn’t have a microchip yet, we strongly encourage you to schedule a microchipping appointment.

7. Schedule an Annual Checkup With Our Mobile Veterinarian

Finally, don’t forget to schedule your pet’s annual wellness and preventative care appointment with Signature Veterinary Services!

Pet Safety Tips for a Halloween That's 100% Treats

The spookiest season has arrived. With it comes loads of fall fun and festivities. However, not everything that comes with celebrating Halloween is fun – or safe – for our pets. So, consider the following tips to make sure this Halloween is 100% treats for your whole family, furry friends included.

5 Halloween Pet Safety Tips

1. Store Treats Safely

Most Halloween candy and treats are unsafe and even toxic for our pets. Any treats containing chocolate, xylitol (artificial sweetener), raisins, and certain nuts are poisonous for pets. Keep treats safely away from your pets and contact a local emergency veterinarian or ASPCA Animal Poison Control immediately if your pet has eaten anything toxic.

2. Beware of Dangerous Decor

Fake blood and glow sticks contain toxic chemicals. Bouncing eyeballs and plastic spiders pose a choking risk. Candle flames can burn. Fake cobwebs can entangle or strangulate animals, and string lights can cause electrocution. Be mindful of your pets when you put up your decorations.

3. Choose a Costume Wisely

It’s fun to dress up our pets for Halloween; they just look so adorable! However, your pets might not find it as cute. Make sure you choose a costume that will be comfortable for your pet and remove any embellishments that could pose a choking hazard for your pet. Never leave your pet unattended when they’re in a costume.

4. Keep Your Pets Secure

There’s a higher threat on Halloween for cats who are left outside, but all animals are in increased danger on all hallow’s eve because they can easily become frightened of trick-or-treaters and run away.
Keep your pets safely secured indoors, away from all the festivities and excitement. This will reduce their stress and ensure they stay safe.

5. Make Sure Your Pet Has Reliable Identification

Frightened pets who are kept securely indoors still have a risk of running away by either escaping out the door when you open it for a trick-or-treater or by breaking out a window screen. Make sure your contact information on your pet’s collar tags and associated with their microchip number is up to date.

Schedule a Microchipping Appointment With Signature Veterinary Services

If your pet does not yet have a microchip, we strongly encourage you to get one. The procedure is quick and nearly painless for pets, similar to receiving a vaccination. To learn more or schedule a house call appointment to have your pets microchipped before Halloween, we welcome you to contact our mobile veterinary clinic today.

Top 5 Reasons Why We Immunize Our Pets

With all the vaccine controversy in the news, many pet parents are wondering whether we should vaccinate our pets and if pet vaccines are actually safe. The answers to these questions are a resounding yes and yes!
Pet vaccines are some of the safest veterinary treatments available, they’re highly effective, and there are several reasons why you should continue vaccinating your pets according to the preventative care schedule recommended by your veterinarian.

Top 5 Reasons Why We Immunize Our Pets

1. It's the Law

Local laws require that pets be vaccinated against certain diseases such as rabies and distemper. Neglecting to vaccinate your pets against these diseases is against the law.

2. It Prevents Suffering and Saves Pet Lives

Vaccinating pets prevents them from contracting a variety of dangerous infectious diseases, many of which have no effective treatments.
When unvaccinated pets fall ill, veterinarians often can only provide supportive care (fluid administration and pain medications). As a result, pets are at high risk of suffering significantly, incurring permanent health damage, or even dying.

3. It Protects People

Many diseases that vaccines prevent pets from contracting are classified as zoonotic, which means they can be transmitted from pets to people. Vaccinating your pets not only safeguards your pets’ health, but also the health of your human friends, family, and neighbors.

4. It's Good for the Community

Vaccinating pets reduces the prevalence of contagious diseases throughout the community. When pets are responsibly vaccinated, there is a much lower transmission rate between wild animals, pets, and people. This improves the safety of the community overall.

5. It's Safe, Effective, and Inexpensive

It’s easy to argue that vaccines are the safest and most effective preventative care available. They work well, they’re inexpensive, and the risk of adverse reactions is incredibly small.
Plus, the cost of vaccinating your pets will always be less expensive than the cost of treating a pet that has contracted a contagious disease.

Mobile Wellness and Preventative Care for Pets

If your pet is due for vaccinations, booster shots, and a general wellness checkup, but you find it difficult to get into a veterinary clinic with your pet, then we strongly encourage you to consider establishing care with Signature Veterinary Services.
Our mobile veterinary clinic brings all the veterinary care your pet needs to stay healthy right to your doorstep. So, you can protect your pet from dangerous diseases without the stress of visiting the animal hospital.
To learn more or schedule an appointment, we welcome you to contact us today.

Dog Beach Safety Tips & Tricks

It’s summer and the prime beach-going season has arrived. Naturally, you want your dog to get in on the fun, too! So, consider the following beach safety tips for dogs to make sure your entire family – furry members included – stay safe while having fun at the beach.

5 Tips to Keep Your Dog Safe at the Beach

1. Make Sure Your Dog Likes the Beach

Not all dogs love sand, and not all dogs are natural swimmers. Before taking your dog out for a whole day at the beach, make a quick stop to see if your dog likes the sand and enjoys splashing in the water. If not, then you’ll know it’s best to leave your pet at home for your beach day.

2. Beware of Leash-Free Beaches

While you should always make sure you take your dog to dog-friendly beaches where pets are allowed, it’s not always advisable to visit beaches that don’t require leashes. Just like dog parks aren’t always the safest place for your dog, you might encounter aggressive dogs at the beach.
Instead, bring an extra-long leash to a dog-friendly beach that requires dogs to be on a leash at all times.

3. Provide Fresh Water and Shade

Although the ocean’s right there, try to keep your dog from drinking the salty water. Make sure you pack enough fresh water to keep you and your pet hydrated for the whole day. Additionally, you should bring some sort of shelter to provide shade so that your dog has a place to retreat when the sun is overhead and at its hottest.

4. Prevent Sunburn

If your dog has had a haircut or naturally has a short coat, you’ll need to prevent sunburn with a dog-friendly, chemical-free sunscreen. Lather it all over your dog’s body, paying close attention to places like the ears and snout where skin will be even more exposed to the sun.

5. Rinse Off

Sand and salt from the ocean water get trapped in your dog’s coat and can irritate his/her skin, leading to dermatological problems. Always thoroughly rinse your pet with fresh water after a day at the beach.

Maximize Your Summer Fun Time With Convenient Mobile Veterinary Care

There’s no sense in spending time driving your pet to and from a veterinary clinic when Signature Veterinary Services can bring complete veterinary care right to your doorstep. With the convenience of a mobile veterinary clinic, you can maximize your time at the beach this summer!
To learn more about establishing your pet’s care with our mobile veterinary clinic, we welcome you to contact Signature Veterinary Services today.