Tag Archives: animal hospital Dayton TN

Teaching A Kitten Proper Petiquette

Have you recently welcomed a new kitten into your home? Congratulations! These little creatures are playful and cute, but they can also be quite mischievous. Having a kitten isn’t just about enjoying your new pet’s silly antics. You’ve got some pet parenting to do! Kittens are in a way like human toddlers: they don’t know what is and isn’t appropriate, so you’ll need to teach them good behavior early on. In this article, a nearby Sale Creek, TN veterinarian shares some helpful tips on how to accomplish this.


How Can I Raise My New Kitten To Be Cuddly?


Cats all have their own individual personalities. Some are little cuddlebugs, while others are more aloof. While breed plays a role here, the way little Fluffy is raised also plays a significant role.


Socialization is crucial. Gentle handling from a young age helps build trust and confidence in your kitten, reducing the likelihood of fearful or aggressive behavior in adulthood. The more you pet and play with your little buddy, the friendlier and more confident she’ll become! 


If your kitten wants to snuggle on your lap or in your arms, let her. Stroke her gently as she relaxes. Chances are, she’ll crank up her motor right away.


Why Does My Kitten Insist On Kneading Me?


This is really just a cute way to express love, albeit a slightly painful one. Kittens knead while nursing, which helps with stimulating milk flow. So, this is a sign that Fluffy regards you as a parent. If those claws hurt, grab a pillow, blanket, or even a sweater.


Why Do Kittens Bite And Scratch So Much?


Your little buddy isn’t trying to hurt you: she’s just trying to sort out how all of her claws and teeth work. This is much more than just entertainment for your kitty. Cats are predators and prey in the wild. (Many scientists are starting to suspect that Fluffy may actually be the purrfect predator, but that’s another topic.) It’s important to understand that our feline pals are pre-programmed with both hunting instincts as well as a desire to explore and find safe spaces.


In other words, you can pretty much expect your tiny ball of fur to practice her murder skills on you. It can be cute to let your furry pal pounce on your toes, but this can lead to dangerous behavior in an adult cat.


Regular play sessions can also strengthen the bond between you and your feline friend. Use toys like feather wands or laser pointers to stimulate your kitten’s natural hunting instincts. If you play with your kitten using your hands or feet, you are teaching her that it is fine to use you as a toy. Opting for toys that can be controlled remotely also makes things more challenging for your cute pet. Laser pointers, string toys, remote control toys, and balls that you can roll toward her are all great options. Just remember to put string toys away after, so your kitty won’t get tangled up.


What Can I Do To Make My Kitten Feel Safe?


Kittens may be fearless, but at the end of the day, they are small and fragile, and can easily be frightened. It’s important to make sure your furry pal feels loved and safe. Speaking to Fluffy can go a long way toward helping her feel safe. It is also great for bonding! Just use a friendly tone of voice when talking to Fluffy.


Your pet will also both enjoy and benefit from snuggling up with you for a nap. Cats crave affection, and many of them love cuddling up with their humans. In fact, this is good for both of you! You and your feline friend both release a hormone called oxytocin, also known as the Cuddle Hormone, when you cuddle. This reinforces your feeling of love and safety.


What Is The Best Way To Teach My Kitten Good Manners?


The key is to be firm, patient, and consistent, but never harsh or mean. Whenever your cat bites or scratches, reprimand her immediately. Don’t yell at her: just use a stern, disapproving tone. You can say, ‘No’ or ‘Play nice’ or ‘Don’t bite’ or ‘Put Your Claws Away.’ Just make sure you use the same words or phrases every time. then walk away and ignore her. If your tiny friend looks insulted and affronted, and perhaps a bit confused, you’re doing the right thing! She will eventually figure it out.


No luck? The next step is to try incorporating something that will irritate your furry friend without hurting or scaring her. You can spray water in her face or blow in her face. Loud noises work well as well. Clap your hands, sound your phone, or rattle a change jar. 


It’s also important to reward your furry friend when she’s being nice. Compliments, attention, toys, treats, and even catnip all work here. 


You don’t want to frighten little Fluffy, but to help her form good associations with good behavior, and less pleasant ones with bad petiquette.


Don’t let bad petiquette slide. Establishing consistent rules and boundaries is crucial for a polite kitten. If you don’t want your kitten on certain surfaces or engaging in specific behaviors, be firm and consistent in your responses. Cats are quick learners! They also thrive in environments where expectations are clear.


What Are the Signs That My Kitten Is Happy?


You can tell quite a bit by the way your furry pal acts. Content kittens are playful, curious, and energetic. They may also act quite self-assured. If your cat feels secure enough to sprawl out on the floor, that’s a good sign. 


Happy cats also seek attention from their owners. When you talk to your adorable little buddy, she may follow you around, hop into your lap, and meow back at you.


Of course, Fluffy’s health will have a big impact on her mental and emotional wellbeing. If she feels sick, uncomfortable, or hurt, she won’t be happy.


How Do I Keep My Kitten Healthy?


Start with good food, clean litter, fresh water, and love. You’ll also need to provide Little Fluffy with toys, beds, and things to climb or explore. 


Veterinary care is also crucial. During that crucial first year, your tiny friend will have to visit the vet a few times: microchipping, spay/neuter surgery, vaccinations, and parasite control. If your Sale Creek, TN veterinarian gives your pet the thumbs up after examining her, you’re doing great.


Why Do Kittens Scratch Things? 


Scratching is a natural feline behavior that serves various purposes, including marking territory and maintaining healthy claws. Provide appropriate outlets for scratching, such as scratching posts or pads, and discourage scratching on furniture.


Cat towers are a great option here. You may find kitten-sized ones, but it’s probably best to go for the full-sized one. Otherwise, your pet will outgrow it quickly. You can also use scratching posts or boards. Ask your Sale Creek, TN  veterinarians for more information.  


Do you have questions about caring for your kitten? We can help! Please feel free to contact us,  your local Sale Creek, TN veterinary clinic, for all of your feline friend’s veterinary care needs.

Adorable Dog Resolutions For 2024

Happy New Year! As we enter the new year, our four-legged patients are full of enthusiasm and excitement. Fido may not comprehend our New Year’s Resolutions when we try to communicate them, but he will still support us with joyful dances and encouraging gestures as we work towards our goals. In fact, our canine companions may also have their own goals for the upcoming year. In a recent article from animal clinic, a local veterinarian in Dayton, TN reveals some of Fido’s top objectives for 2024.


Skip Beauty Sessions


Cats and dogs have very different opinions when it comes to grooming. Fluffy is very committed to her beauty regimen, and may spend several hours a day carefully cleaning her pretty fur, making it soft and shiny. Fido, however, is not anywhere near as enthusiastic about his grooming rituals. Given the choice, he’d probably much rather roll around in a mud puddle than get bathed.


The best way to get your dog to get into the tub may be to bribe him. Call Fido into the bathroom and have him get into it. Then, give him a treat. Choose something special, like steak. When he’s done, let him go. After a few rounds, your pup might have a miraculous change of heart about bathing.


Keep in mind that all of our canine friends have different grooming needs. Your vet may recommend going to a groomer in some cases, such as if your pet needs medical grooming, and/or is a senior or a large dog. Ask your animal clinic for more information.


Make Time To Play


Dogs are always super cute when they’re being playful. Fido should have a variety of toys to play with. Playthings keep your pooch stimulated, occupied, and comforted, while providing a healthy outlet for any pent-up doggy energy he has. It can also help distract and occupy mischievous dogs, which can help curb undesirable behaviors, like digging and chewing.


Rotate Fido’s toys regularly, so he will always have something fresh and new. Pupscription boxes are a good option for this.


Explore My World


There’s something so cute about how happy Fido is to accompany his humans places. You can definitely take your pup out and about with you, as long as you put safety first.


We always recommend keeping dogs crated for travel. Although Fido may enjoy sticking his nose out the window, it’s just not safe for him. Your pup could get dust, bugs, pollen, pebbles, dirt, or even a lit cigarette in his eyes, and he won’t be adequately protected in the event of an accident.


Proper training is key here. Your pooch needs to see his crate as a comfortable, safe place, not a jail cell. You can make the crate more appealing by adding comfy bedding and toys.


Never leave your dog unattended in the car, especially when it’s hot. The exception would be if you have a Tesla or another car with pet mode. However, we still recommend erring on the side of caution.


Be Healthy And Fit


We know, Fido would probably prefer to go to the park or drive through instead of visiting us. However, proper veterinary care is crucial to his health and well-being.


We recommend that all dogs be spayed or neutered, microchipped, and kept up to date on all recommended vaccinations and parasite control. Regular exams and screenings are also very important. Contact your Dayton, TN veterinarian today to make an appointment.


Get Fluffy Out Of My Bed


Sorry, Fido, you’re out of luck on this one. Cats are very opportunistic nappers, and they don’t hesitate to claim comfy spots.


Live For The Moment


Dogs aren’t just good friends: they’re also wonderful sources of inspiration. Fido is a living, barking reminder of the importance of taking time to stop and smell the roses. (And the sidewalk. And the grass.)


With that being said, it’s crucial for pet owners to understand the significance of their canine companions’ sense of smell. Not only is Fido’s nose incredibly charming, but it’s also highly impressive. As most people know, dogs possess a much keener sense of smell than humans do. In fact, Man’s Best Buddy has around 300 million olfactory receptors in his nose. (We have about six million.) Additionally, a substantial proportion of Fido’s brain – about 40 percent more – is dedicated to processing scents compared to ours. Furthermore, our furry pals have neophilia, which means they are endlessly fascinated by new smells. (This probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise to anyone who has a dog.)


While you’re walking your dog, let him investigate things. Sniffing a neighbor’s yard is similar to sniffing a newspaper to Fido! Take your pet to new places this year, and let him sniff new territory.


Continue My Education


Did you know that many dogs actually enjoy learning new things? Fido looks adorably proud of himself when he’s being praised for picking up something new. 


Continued training is a great way to help your pooch be a Very Good Boy, but it’s also great for bonding and stimulation.


All dogs should know Sit, Stay, Come, Heel, and Lay Down. Drop It is another good command. Start with these first, and work on them one at a time.


After Fido has mastered these commands, you could move on to advanced commands or show him something fun. Classic tricks, such as Play Dead, Beg and Roll Over, are always adorable, but there are many lesser-known tricks that are also fun. (Shark and Smile are two cute ones.)


Get More Belly Rubs


Dogs’ love, loyalty, and devotion are rare and precious gifts. Fido’s unconditional devotion is truly extraordinary. Our furry pals will push themselves to exhaustion, or even risk their lives for us! They don’t ask for much in return, either: just basic TLC and, of course, love and affection.


Help your cute pet make this goal. Pay lots of attention to Fido, and reward him for good behavior. Even petting your pup on the forehead as you walk past can make him feel loved and safe.


Sample More Bacon


Our canine pals definitely love food.  Put Fido’s love of snacks to work in your favor. Treats can help you bond with your pup, and are great training aids. Just choose foods that are healthy, like plain, cooked meat, fish, and chicken without skin, bones, or fat. Also, take care not to go overboard. Treats shouldn’t make up more than 5% of your dog’s daily caloric intake. (You may have to steel your nerves against that cute face. Be strong!) Finally, be sure to make your dog do a trick for the treat. This is actually great for Fido’s confidence!


Find out more about offering treats from your Dayton, TN veterinarian.


Hang Out With The Humans


At the end of the day, all your pet really wants is to be with you. Dogs stay with us through all of life’s ups and downs, and they really do complete our lives and households. Plan some quality time every day for Fido. The time we have with our canine companions is truly precious, and it often passes too fast.

Happy New Year from all of us here at South Rhea Animal Hospital! We wish you and your family a happy and healthy new year. As your Dayton, TN veterinary clinic, we look forward to providing you with excellent care in 2024 and beyond.

Fluffy’s Year In Review

Happy New Year! As we say goodbye to 2022, many people will be looking back over the last 12 months, and ruminating on various high and low points. Actually, our feline pals also have a few things worth recapping. A local vet lists some of them below.

Dave Finds A Home

The World Cup has gone to the cats! This year, two British players made headlines after befriending a stray cat at their training camp in Al Wakrah, Dubai. The kitty, whom players affectionately named Dave, was adopted by Manchester City’s Kyle Walker and John Stones, and is now presumably living it up as a celebrekitty.

A Plawsible Cause

In Columbus, Ohio, cat lovers are rallying to add a special license plate option: ‘Weirdo Cat Lovers Of Cleveland.’ Proceeds would go to a kitty charity, Weirdo Cat Lovers Of Cleveland, which provides emergency veterinary fund help and supports TNR practices. That’s a pretty worthy cause to support!

Dabbing In Dabloons

Fluffy has apparently been trying to get a pawhold in the digital currency market. In one of the latest viral TikTok trends, users exchange a new cryptocurrency known as Dabloons. What does this have to do with our feline friends? The Dabloon—which is loosely named after the doubloon, a Spanish coin—features cat pictures.

Proud Retirement

We have another story out of Ohio: this one is about a cute furball named Otis, who retired from his official position as bookstore kitty at Loganberry Books after 14 years. The beloved feline charmed many hearts over the course of his career, and is looking forward to a retirement that will probably consist mostly of naps.


A California woman was thrilled to be reunited with her long-lost cat, Lily, who had been missing for a whopping six years. This remarkable reunion is credited to a microchip. Microchips have brought many wayward kitties back to their worried humans. If you haven’t had your pet microchipped yet, this is a great reminder to do so!

Cat Art

If the internet has revealed anything about human nature, it’s probably the fact that we’re collectively obsessed with cats. One Instagram account is the purrfect demonstration of that. The page, Koty Vezde, is a big hit with kitty lovers: the artist puts Fluffy’s face on pretty much everything, from giraffes to llamas.

Happy New Year! Please contact us for your kitty’s veterinary care needs.

Doggy Dental Woes

Does your canine pal have dragon breath? If so, he may need his choppers checked. Bad breath is often a sign of dental trouble in dogs! Dental issues are actually quite common in our furry companions. However, many people inadvertently overlook this critical aspect of pet care. A local Sale Creek, TN vet discusses doggy dental care in this article.

Common Dental Issues

Dogs can suffer from a wide variety of dental problems. Gum disease is one of the most common. In fact, over 80 percent of adult dogs are afflicted with some form of this disease. Other problems Man’s Best Friend may have include cracked, broken, or misaligned teeth; abscesses; and misalignments.

Warning Signs

Bad breath, as mentioned above, is a very common indication of doggy dental woes. Other things to watch for include visible tartar buildup; ropy, stringy, or excessive drool; swelling; bleeding gums; and blood on your canine buddy’s toys or dishes. Fido may also act grumpy if his teeth hurt, and may take longer eating than he once did. Call your vet right away if you notice any of these red flags.

Home Care

Dental care should be a regular part of your pup’s regular care regimen. The best thing you can do is to brush your dog’s teeth. Use pet toothpaste and doggy toothbrushes. Human products aren’t safe for Fido. If you can’t get your canine companion to sit still to have his teeth cleaned, don’t worry. Dental-formula treats, kibble, and chews can be very helpful. These products are formulated to remove plaque and tartar. It’s also important to make sure Fido has lots of chew toys. Last but not least, keep your furry buddy’s bowl filled with fresh water.

Veterinary Care

Fido should have his choppers examined by a vet at least once a year, starting at around age one. If you know or suspect that your pooch has dental issues, call your vet right away. Treatment is always offered on a case-by-case basis, once a diagnosis has been made. Keep in mind that the point of doggy dental care is not to give your pup a perfect smile. Instead, the focus is on treating problems that can be painful and/or lead to infections or other medical issues.

Please contact us, your Sale Creek, TN pet clinic, for all of your dog’s veterinary care needs. We are always happy to help!