I had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Carol Osborne, DVM, a very knowledgeable Integrative Veterinarian who discussed her companion animal practice and the aging pet dilemma.
Dr. Carol combines high quality Western Veterinary Medicine (which is Traditional Veterinary Medicine, ie: surgery, antibiotics, advanced medical therapeutics, etc) with Eastern and Alternative Holistic Veterinary Medicine (such as Acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Herbs, Homeopathy, Bach Flowers, Nutritional Supplements, Energy, and Diet, etc). This allows Dr. Carol to offer her pet patients the best of both worlds to optimize pet health, wellness and longevity for her dog and cat patients.
Dr. Carol is also the first veterinarian to be certified as a Diplomat of the American Board of Anti-Aging Medicine. Very impressive!
Below is a summary of our conversation. I provided the questions and Dr. Carol, the answers.
1. What made you decide to become a Veterinarian?
Although allergic to pets, I’ve been an animal lover from day one and thought what could be better than to become a veterinarian and combine my love of animals with my quest for medicine. This is a way to “have your cake and eat it too!” It’s wonderful to be able to dedicate your life’s work to what you love most and have the tools, knowledge and power to truly help pets enjoy longer, healthier, happier lives.
2. You began as a Traditional Vet-What made you explore the Eastern/ Holistic Route?
After graduating Cum Laude from the Ohio State University, College of Veterinary Medicine, I started my own private small animal clinical practice. About 10 years later, our puppies and kittens had become senior citizens and many began suffering from various degenerative diseases we associate with aging in pets. These disorders included: Cancer, arthritis, Diabetes, Cushing’s Disease, Kidney, Liver and Heart disorders, etc., to name a few. When I looked around to find veterinarians working to solve these degenerative pet diseases associated with aging, I came up blank.
So….. I thought since no one else is trying to unlock the secrets behind pet aging disorders, I decided to do it myself. I studied aging and gerontology for 5 years, then sat to take the 4 hour exam that would make me the first veterinarian in the world to also be a Board Certified Diplomat in Anti-Aging Medicine.
I thought if these longevity principles work for people, why wouldn’t they work for dogs? Scientists had already unraveled Doggie DNA or the canine genetic code which revealed that man and dogs are over 96% identical genetically.
After all, dogs have 4 legs and we have two, other than that, our bodies are physiologically remarkably similar.
Over the next few years, and after much trial and tribulation, I created a natural longevity pet vitamin supplement for dogs called PAAWS. We began clinical trials starting with 40 dogs and the results were over the top! With the success of these initial PAAWS clinical trials, we added many, many more canines to our program. After 15 years found that we were able to increase the healthy lifespan of dogs by an average of 30+ percent which translates into 3-4 extra healthy years, pets and their people can share together. We had small dogs 25-35 pounds going strong at age 24 and giant breed dogs over 80 pounds enjoying quality life at age 19. Even I, despite my skeptical nature, was amazed at the results!
4. You wrote two books? Tell me about them?
“Dr. Carol's Naturally Healthy Dogs” and “Dr. Carol’s Naturally Healthy Cats” were Dr. Carol’s first two pet books. They sold over 200,000 copies in Europe and have been translated into 12 different languages. These pet books are 112 page, 4-color, reader friendly, fact finders, that help pet owners keep their dogs and cats in tip top condition by treating the most common problems dog and cat owners encounter on a daily basis. Dr. Carol offers traditional treatments along with an herbal, homeopathic solution for each. The books also include home remedies that pet owners can try, simple solutions for pet behavioral problems and advice on coping with emergencies. It’s an easy-to-read medical book for pets; if your pet has a condition or illness, you can find simple, easy to understand answers in Dr. Carol’s pet books!
5. I see you offer consults - do you still have an office/practice?
I have a veterinary office in Ohio where we see dogs and cats daily. I also provide in depth phone consultations for dog and cat owners out of state in need my professional, veterinary advice.
6. What is the best advice you can give to pet owners with aging pets?
As our dogs and cats age, pet owners no longer have to stand by watching helplessly as their pets suffer the sorrows of old age. Today we are able to address old age pet disorders by combining Eastern and Western Veterinary Principles and the results are quite successful for many pets. Don’t accept your pet’s age as an excuse for a living with a debilitative medical condition; treatment is available to help your aging best friend.
In general as pet’s get older, there are several simple steps pet owners can take to ensure healthy aging.
- Be sure your pets have access to fresh clean water at all times. Distilled water is BEST!
Pets need daily exercise, at least 20 minutes twice a day.
- Feed a minimum of two high quality, preferably organic meals a day, leave bowls down 20 minutes, then pick them up.
- Consider adding a balanced, comprehensive, anti-oxidant-vitamin-mineral supplement to your pet’s daily regime.
- Keep your pet’s hair coat free of mats and tangles and don’t forget to brush those flossy whites daily.
- Avoid free feeding as this leads to pet obesity. Try to maintain a lean pet body weight.
- Check your pet’s body daily for any new lumps or bumps.
- Visit your vet at least twice a year if Fido or Fluffy is age 7 or older.
- Minimize excessive vaccines as your pet ages.
- Remember an ounce of prevention is worth far more than a pound of cure when your pet’s health is at stake.
Dr. Carol and I could have spoken for hours about her pet passion and love of dogs and cats. If your pets need special attention, and/or if you have a pet question for Dr. Carol, please take a look at her website: www.drcarol.com or call her veterinary office toll free at 866-372-2765. Mention you are a Petpav member, and you will receive special pet product discounts!
CAROL OSBORNE, D.V.M., is recognized as an authority on alternative and holistic veterinary medicine and the new clinical science of aging-related pet diseases. A Board Certified Diplomat of the American Board of Anti-Aging Medicine, she has pioneered the exploration of new therapies for the treatment and prevention of age-related degenerative disease, as well as promotion of optimum health and performance for pets. Dr. Osborne created and patented PAAWS, Pet Anti-Aging Wellness System and authored Naturally Healthy Dogs and Naturally Healthy Cats. She has been featured in USA Today, The Los Angeles Times and the New York Daily News. An Emmy-nominated television journalist, Dr. Osborne has gained national prominence through her frequent appearances on popular shows including Today in New York, Good Day L.A., and Discovery’s Animal Planet. Currently, she devotes much of her time to the research and development of advanced biosciences for the benefit of animal health and welfare.
I know that so many dog owners love to get away on a vacation or a business trip and can’t take their beloved pups with them. Then, of course, there is the guilt about leaving your dogs at a kennel or boarding facility and you just don’t feel entirely comfortable doing so. Well, Dog Vacay is the answer to just this situation.
Dog Vacay has a great concept and service (with a fun, adorable and elaborate website). You can board your dogs in a home with real dog lovers/owners who will place your dog in an actual home. They have thousands of vetted and insured dog lovers across the country ready to watch your dog like a member of their own family. All you need to do is browse some of the doggy hosts in your area, see which one you like, schedule your trip and book online. Easy enough!
Check out this great video to see how Dog Vacay works:
1. Find the Perfect Host For Your Dog
You have the ability to search hundreds of pet sitters near you and read the host reviews to find the best home for your dog. Find the one you connect with and feel comfortable to take care of your pup.
2. Schedule, Book and Pay Online
Create a free account, make a reservation and pay online. If you have a question, you can schedule a meet-n-greet or send one of the qualified hosts a message. This way you get a feel of who will be taking care of your pup.
3. Travel with Peace of Mind
Once you choose your dog’s home, you can leave your pup in a cage free home and get photo updates of his Vacay! Think summer camp for your pups! You can also feel at ease knowing you have emergency coverage and support for your pup.
Why should you place your beloved pup with the Dog Vacay Team?
1. Experienced and Qualified Hosts
All of their hosts are hand approved to ensure quality and safety for your dogs. They make it easy to browse hundreds of qualified hosts in your area ranging from professional pet sitters to retired veterinarians to experienced dog lovers.
2. Complimentary Dog Boarding Insurance
All bookings made on DogVacay.com include complimentary insurance and many hosts have Premium Insurance. Through their partnership with VCA-Antech, the largest veterinary group in the country, they offer emergency support. In the rare event that something goes wrong, they've got you covered. No need to worry when you are away.
3. Affordable Pet Sitting Rates
Their rates start at $15 a night. Vacations can get expensive, but quality dog boarding doesn't have to be.
4. Photo Updates
All hosts are required to send photos of their guest dogs to their parents. Enjoy pictures of your pup making new friends and enjoying a vacation of his own. Let’s just hope your pup wants to come home after his stay with dog vacay!
5. Amazing Customer Service
They provide great customer service. When I called with a ton of questions, they answered everything I could ever dream of asking. They can also help you with last minute cancellations or any special requests like dog walking, doggy daycare and more.
There are so many reasons to feel great about your leaving your pup with the dog lovers at Dog Vacay. So, the next time you book a trip, make sure that your pup gets a great vacation too. That’s only fair!
Take a look at DogVacay.com and you can see why this is a place your pup will call home!
I wanted to share with my members this great and fun review of Petpav.com that was on “Nikki Knows Pets.” Nikki Moustaki writes weekly reviews on different pet products or in my case, a pet social network. I was thrilled to have such a great review on such an amazing platform. Here is the review:
Petpav.com Review by Nikki Moustaki
I recentlycame across a cool pet social network calledPetpav.com, short for Pet Pavilion. It's kind of like Facebook for pets. The pets and pet businesses on the site are friendly and often funny, and it’s a great way to meet other furry companions, which I typically do through Facebook and Twitter, but on Petpav.comthey're concentrated, and no worries about their profiles being taken down by the Facebook pet police.
As social networking has become insanely popular, it seems like we didn't know how we managed to stay connected to our friends, family, and co-workers before! But now our pets have their very own platform where they can connect with other pets and pet guardians.
A Warm Welcome
When you first sign onto the site, you fill out a profile for your pet or pet business (like other similar sites, no surprises) and then you're welcomed by Sammy, a sassy orange tabby cat and the site administrator.
Once you build a profile for your pet, like I did for one of my dogs, Pearl, you navigate to the "petworking" wall, similar to the newsfeed on Facebook, and introduce your pet, ask questions, meet other pets and their owners, etc.
You can brag about your pet by uploading photos, videos, and making comments on the petworking wall. Pearl likes to brag (and beg for cyber cookies), so I'm sure she'll be on her well, imploring other members to send her photos of yummy eats. I have found that the other members on the site are fun, passionate, interesting pet people.
Also, if you have a problem with your pet, you can ask other pet guardians for advice. If you want to find a good veterinarian nearby, you can ask if anyone has a recommendation, or give you some tips for your overweight dog (poor chubby Pearl, she'll be getting some advice in that area).
Pet businesses can promote their business for free to an all-pet audience. Pet businesses can also become Pet Business of the Week, and who doesn't like to win that kind of award? The Pet Business of the Week is featured in PetPav's weekly newsletter and is promoted on Facebook, Linked-in, and Twitter.
Weekly Articles on Pet Care
PetPav also has some interesting articles that help pet guardians with pet health issues, announces local pet events, and breaks pet news. Once you join, you get a weekly newsletter with the top articles of the week. I get TONS of newsletters and junk mail, but I don't mind getting this one since it's literally only once a week and doesn't clog up my inbox.
With Facebook getting so big, it’s nice to find another place for pets that they can call their cyber home. It's a great concept. I’m interested to see how Peptav.com continues to grow. See you there?
If you are like most pet owners, we all worry about our ‘kids” when we go on a vacation. Who will take care of our cats and dogs? Are they going to be OK and in good hands? Well, Furlocity.com is a new site that helps you find a safe and happy place for your beloved pets.
Here’s how it works:
How to book a stay for your pet(s)
When it comes to booking a stay for your pet(s) there are some things you should know. First, they made it easy to find the best place that suits your needs and that of your pets. Second, they took early measures to ask facilities what they would need in order to make the check-in process easy and quick. There are two ways you can book a stay with them.
First, watch this great video of how Furlocity works. And then it is all explained below for your information.
By registering, you are creating a pet profile for all of your pets. The reason they do that is so that pet resorts/hotels are well informed of who your pet is, any medical needs they may have and most importantly vaccination records. It is vital that all of your pet(s) vaccinations are stored and you can do so by simply requesting them from your veterinarian. Our FAQ section details all the necessary vaccinations that our pet resorts/hotels will require. Registering also enrolls you into their rewards program by giving you free or discounted nights for booking a stay with them. It’s their way of saying” Thank you!”
2. Search and Book:
They know that when you need to book a stay, especially if its last minute, you just want to get on and book. You can most certainly do that. When checking out, you will be asked a few pieces of information that the pet resort/hotel will need to get to know the needs of your pets. It’s that simple!
3. What happens after your book your pet?
Once your pet’s stay has been booked, you will receive a confirmation email as will the pet resort/hotel that you booked a stay with. All pet resort/hotels have all standard protocols with them including a welcome call to help you understand your needs and that of your pets. If the pet resort/hotel requires a screening/behavioral analysis prior to being admitted, you must do so within 7 DAYS of your stay. If for any reason your pet does not get accepted, they will issue a FULL refund.
4. What about multiple pets?
You can book a stay for all of your pets at once. In fact, for most facilities that they list, you will receive a DISCOUNT for booking multiple pets staying in one room! The room that you pick will be where both pets will stay. Some pet resorts/hotels can only house up to a certain amount of pets in one room at a given time. Be sure to check with your facility or ask them once they contact you.
Furlocity is rolling out their cities slowly. Right now they are located in San Diego, California Aurora and Parker, Colorado. If you own a pet in those cities, take a look at Furlocity.com and book your pets’ stay today. I can’t wait to see how http://www.Furlocity.com grows and expands to other cities.
We all love our dogs immensely and know how they not only shower us with love and affection, but can also teach us how to care. We learn every day that taking care of our dogs not only helps them function, but we also benefit from having a pet in our lives. Our pets teach us love, compassion and selflessness as they become our companions and family members. And, we LOVE it even more when we can adopt a pet and save his or her life.
Imagine now how wonderful it would be if we could not only save a dog’s life from a high-kill shelter, but also help jail inmates rehabilitate at the same time. That’s exactly what Georgia Jailhouse Dogs provides for dogs and inmates and I think it’s brilliant!
I had the opportunity to speak with Gordon Panter of Georgia Jailhouse Dogs about their wonderful program.
A Win – Win for Dogs and Inmates
Georgia Jail House Dogs (GJHD) is a non-Profit organization that was started to help rehabilitate Georgia's county jail inmates and their local shelter dogs through a well thought out good behavior incentive program. The concept behind the non-profit is for inmates to gain a new, optimistic outlook while helping train at-risk shelter dogs to become more caring and adoptable.
GJHD teaches prisoners new skills
The inmates, in teaching and working with these dogs to become more sociable, are learning wonderful and practical life skills. These inmates will be able to look for employment in the dog arena having gained the knowledge of dog care, grooming, and training. This has proven to help the recidivism rate and give the inmates a goal to pursue.
Further, in caring for the dogs, the inmates have learned how to love again and gain an instant companion in the process. By helping these dogs, they are in turn helping themselves.
GJHD gives at-risk shelter dogs a real chance to get adopted
GJHD gives their community’s homeless dogs the chance to become the top choice for a caring home. The dogs undergo a three to six week program of humane training and upon completion become Canine Good Citizens. When a dog completes the program, there is an actual graduation ceremony held for each class of dogs and the dog becomes certified as a highly trained canine citizen. Who wouldn’t want to adopt one of these dogs!
Further, these dogs are taken from every county’s euthanasia list to give them a second chance at life. The program puts much thought and time into matching the dog and inmate team.
GJHD wants to expand the program further
GJHD’s goal is to have as many Georgia county jails participate in this type of program that can rehabilitate both inmates and dogs. As it continues to grow and flourish, I would hope that other states can implement a similar program. But, until that happens, I encourage you to take a look at their website: Georgia Jailhouse Dogs and like them on Facebook: GaJailHouseDogs to see how wonderful this program is.