Day: May 5, 2020

Aging Dog Health

Aging dog health is a concern among pet owners and veterinarians. Dogs, like people, are living longer lives due to advances in medical care and better availability of resources to keep them in peak condition. Thus, dogs are facing many of the same challenges that aging people do. Of particular concern to many dog owners is the specter of arthritis, a joint disease that often starts to afflict dogs in middle age.

Joint Disease And Aging Dog Health

Arthritis is a degenerative disease that tends to get worse if left untreated. Its main cause is a breakdown in cartilage, the spongy tissue that cushions the joint bones. As dogs age, their bodies lose the ability to rebuild and maintain healthy cartilage due to stresses from the environment and their own metabolic processes.

When a dog’s body can no longer produce enough cartilage to cushion the bones, the dog start to experience stiffness and pain. This is due to the fact that bones are starting to rub together and excess fluid is accumulating in response to the loss of cartilage. The result is swelling at the joints that causes loss of mobility. The difficulty in getting around, and the resulting lowered quality of life, is one of the factors that make arthritis a major issue in the field of aging dog health.

Arthritis is something that every dog owner should be concerned about. The good news for pet owners is that there are many exciting new options for treating arthritis in dogs. Early treatment can give a dog many years of pain-free movement and a better quality of life. Being proactive in tackling the issues relating to aging dog health can prevent many future problems.

What to Do if Your Hamster Has Babies: Emergency Steps to Help Pregnant Hamsters

Your female hamster has developed an oval bulge, is bad-tempered and is hiding in her nest. You have had her for about two weeks. One morning, you notice what looks like blood on the nest, and hear tiny high-pitched squeaking. Your hamster has given birth.

Not all hamsters are obviously pregnant. Some babies appear overnight and there are only a few in the litter. Others can have litters up to sixteen babies although six or seven is usual. Gestation is sixteen days.

Hamsters are Good Mothers

The new hamster mother is naturally nervous at first. She will keep the babies safe deep in the nesting material. Others may scatter babies about the cage as they come out of the nest. The mother hamster should hear her babies’ protests and gather them up, but if she does not, remove her from the cage for a moment with a small amount of food and transfer the babies back to the nest with a metal spoon.

A new hamster mother must be disturbed as little as possible. When you put food in her cage, do not touch the nest as your smell may cause her to abandon the babies. Leaving well alone is the safest thing to do and this includes not cleaning the cage.

You might like to feed her with a little porridge oats mixed with cold milk which will help to keep her healthy.

The Hamster Babies Grow Quickly

By two weeks old, they will be starting to escape the nest. Once the babies are freely running round the cage, it is safe to handle them and you can clean the cage. They are quick, but they do not bite and if well-handled, they will be friendly little hamsters. Be careful not to drop them and always keep them safe above a surface.

By three weeks they are miniature adults. At 28 days, all male babies must be in a separate cage to avoid any more unwanted pregnancies.

The Hamster Babies are Ready for Their New Homes

Separate out the males and females in two groups in their own cages by the time they are 28 days old. By five weeks, they will be ready for their own homes or to go to a pet shop. If they are still together at eight weeks old, they will be starting to fight and each will need its own cage. Start planning what to do with the babies as soon as you know how many there are.

There are occasional tragedies, and your hamster mother may die or ignore her babies. Hamster babies can occasionally be fostered onto another mum who has babies of a similar age, but it is risky. It is also almost impossible to meet the needs of a newborn hamster baby yourself. If you wish to try, kitten milk is best, but keeping them warm is the most difficult thing to do.

Enjoy your hamster babies. If you have helped your hamster mother to raise her litter successfully and found good homes for them then you will have done the best for your pet hamster.