Saturday, February 25, 2012

Merial Donates Certifect to Police and Service Dogs

We are pleased to report that Merial has made a generous donation of their new flea and tick preventative drug, Certifect, to the police and service dogs we see at Niles Animal Hospital.

Since 1999, we have been providing veterinary care for the Federal dogs who work out at O'Hare, Midway, mass transit and for the TSA. It is indeed a privilege and honor for us to be the veterinarians for these dogs and their officers who are dedicated to protecting all of us. In a benevolent act to help defray the cost of the care for these dogs, Merial has provided us with Certifect so that these dogs can be protected against fleas and ticks. We sincerely appreciate this kind gesture.

Next time you are at the airport or taking mass transit and see these dogs and their officers, know that they are a very effective line of defense in keeping us safe from danger. Working with these officers and their dogs through the years, I am so impressed by the quality of these dogs and the officers who handle them. We can rest easy knowing these officers and their dogs are ever vigilant, protecting us. We owe them a huge debt of gratitude for what they do and in this case, Merial put their money where their mouth is, which is well appreciated by all.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Pet Wellness Class About Nutrition on Sunday Night!

Just a reminder. The Pet Wellness Class about Nutrition presented by Dr. Bartels from Hill's Science Diet will be held this Sunday at Niles Animal Hospital 7278 N. Milwaukee Ave. Niles from 6-8 PM. It is also a fundraising event for Chicago Pet Rescue and a $10 donation is suggested. Dr. Bartels will speak about pet nutrition and teach the attendees how to read pet food you will really know what things mean on the label. Light refreshments will be served.

Call the hospital 847-647-9325 for more information or to let us know you are coming. You can also RSVP at the Chicago Pet Rescue website.

Please take will be an interesting and informative presentation.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Arigato from Japan Earthquake Victims

With all the crap and divisiveness going on in this world here is a heartwarming video. It is a thank you from the people of Japan who suffered during the earthquake and ensuing tsunami on 3/11/11.  It was sent to me by a friend and I wanted to share it. It shows what we can accomplish when we help each other and also how wonderful the heartfelt appreciation of those you have helped makes you feel.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Salmonella Risk in Pet Foods

This information was found in an article in the March 2012 Dog Fancy Magazine and is definitely worth sharing.

Salmonella lurks in pet foods, supplements, and treats more often than you may think, making both pets and people sick.

Since 2010 the Food and Drug Administration has issued more than two dozen recalls warning consumers about salmonella-tainted pet products on the market.

We all have heard of Salmonella but what is it and where does it come from? Salmonella  is a genus of rod-shaped, Gram-negative, non-spore-forming, predominantly motile bacteria from the intestinal tract. Salmonella is closely related to E. coli and are found worldwide in cold- and warm-blooded animals (including humans), and in the environment. They cause illnesses like typhoid fever, paratyphoid fever, and foodborne illness. Salmonella infections are zoonotic and can be transferred between humans and non-human animals. Many infections are due to ingestion of contaminated food.

Sources of infection include:
  •  Infected food, often gaining an unusual look or smell, then is introduced into the stream of commerce;
  • Poor kitchen hygiene, especially problematic in institutional kitchens and restaurants because this can lead to a significant outbreak;
  • Excretions from either sick or infected but apparently clinically healthy people and animals (especially endangered are caregivers and animals);
  • Polluted surface water and standing water (such as in shower hoses or unused water dispensers);
  • Unhygienically thawed fowl (the meltwater contains many bacteria);
  • An association with reptiles (pet tortoises, snakes, iguanas, and frogs, but primarily aquatic turtles) is well described.
Salmonella bacteria can survive several weeks in a dry environment and several months in water; thus, they are frequently found in polluted water, contamination from the excrement of carrier animals being particularly important. Aquatic vertebrates, notably birds and reptiles, are important vectors of Salmonella. Poultry, cattle, and sheep frequently being agents of contamination, Salmonella can be found in food, especially in milk, meats and sometimes in eggs which have cracks.

High temperatures in the cooking process kill the Salmonella organisms, but the problem is not all consumable pet products are cooked. There are many steps in the production process after cooking where cross contamination with Salmonella and other bacteria could occur.

Sickened pets may experience diarrhea, lethargy, fever, and vomiting. People handling contaminated pet products may become ill, too. In 2010, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that between 2006 and 2008, nearly 80 people (about half of them children under the age of 2) became sick after coming in contact with dry dog and cat food.

The way to keep your family and pets healthy is easy to do by following these steps:
  • Wash hands with warm soapy water before and after touching pet food items.
  • Store pet food, treats, and nutritional products according to label instructions. This usually means keeping them in a cool, dry, dark place.
  • Discourage children younger than 5 years of age from touching pet food, treats, or supplements. Young children are more at risk for illnesses because their immune systems are still developing.
  • Purchase individually packaged pig ears rather than buying them from bulk bins.
  • Use a scoop to dispense pet food into bowls.
  • Wash water and food bowls regularly with hot, soapy water.
Perhaps your best line of defense is staying current on pet product recalls. You can do so by visiting the FDA website at

Portions of this article excerpted from the Newshound section of Dog Fancy March 2012 Issue "Stave Off Salmonella" written by Maryann Mott and also from Wikipedia.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

An Inspirational Story

I received a link to this video from a friend of mine. It is a very moving story.

I am not going to divulge too much as you need to experience it as the story unfolds. It is about an Australian contestant on the X Factor Show (Australian version).

The song he performs is "Imagine" by John Lennon. After you hear his story and he sings that song you will be moved as I was (along with the audience and judges of the show). The words are even more meaningful when he sings them.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Pet Wellness Class on Dog and Cat Nutrition

Pet Wellness Class to be Conducted

A pet wellness class will be conducted at Niles Animal Hospital on dog and cat nutrition. It will be given by Jack Bartels DVM who is a nutrition expert for Hill's Nutrition. It is also a fund raiser for the Chicago Pet Rescue and a donation of $10.00 is suggested. Please come and take part as you will learn a great deal and also help support a good cause.

Sunday, February 26, 2012 at 6:00pm until 8:00pm
  • Are you interested in keeping your dog healthy? Want to learn from a professional veterinarian who specializes in nutrition?

    Then join Chicago Pet Rescue (CPR) to hear: Dr. Bartels speak about

    "Pet Nutrition: What you put in, is what you get out".

    Presentation will be 1 hour at
    Niles Animal Hospital
    7278 N. Milwaukee Ave.
    Niles, IL 60714 
    Register at the link below.

    (Each class will include a handout on the information covered, presentation and time for question/answer opportunity. CPR staff will also be on hand to answer any questions about upcoming rescue happenings and volunteer opportunities.)

    Donations for each class are $10 

    For Information About the Pet Wellness Series and Past Lectures Visit:

     You can also RSVP via email right now (

The Loving Nature of Animals - A Valentine's Day Slide Show

In celebration of Valentine's Day, I created a slide show demonstrating the loving nature of a variety of animals. The photographs show animals interacting with humans, other animals and inanimate objects. The music is from the Disney Classic "Lady and the Tramp" during the scene when the dogs are being serenaded while sharing a bowl of spaghetti and meatballs. It is a very poignant and the most unforgettable scene for most people. The version is a newer rendition sung by Joy Enriquez and Carlos Ponce. It is a loving show and I hope you enjoy it.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Amazing Photography of Animals in the Womb

Received this YouTube video from a friend and I had to share it. It is truly amazing.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Sergeant Stubby - War Dog Hero

Another story about a hero animal that served in the military, Sergeant Stubby. (from Wikipedia). These true stories are very compelling to me compared to the fictional accounts that we see on TV or at the movies.

Sergeant Stubby (1916 or 1917 – March 16, 1926), was the most decorated war dog of World War I and the only dog to be promoted to sergeant through combat.


While training for combat on the fields of Yale University in 1917, Private J. Robert Conroy found a brindle American Pit Bull Terrier mix puppy with a short tail. He named him "Stubby", and soon the dog became the mascot of the 102nd Infantry, 26th Yankee Division. He learned the bugle calls, the drills, and even a modified dog salute as he put his right paw on his right eyebrow when a salute was executed by his fellow soldiers. Stubby had a positive effect on morale, and was allowed to remain in the camp, even though animals were forbidden.
When the division shipped out for France aboard the SS Minnesota, Private Conroy smuggled Stubby aboard. Hidden in the coal bin until the ship was far at sea, Stubby was brought out on deck where the sailors were soon won over by the canine soldier. Stubby was once again smuggled off the ship and was soon discovered by Pvt. Conroy's commanding officer. The CO allowed Stubby to remain after Stubby gave him a salute.
When the Yankee Division headed for the front lines in France, Stubby was given special orders allowing him to accompany the Division to the front lines as their official mascot. The 102nd Infantry reached the front lines on the 5 February 1918. Stubby soon became accustomed to the loud rifles and heavy artillery fire. His first battle injury occurred from gas exposure; he was taken to a nearby field hospital and nursed back to health. The injury left him sensitive to the tiniest trace of gas. When the Division was attacked in an early morning gas launch, most of the troops were asleep. Stubby recognized the gas and ran through the trench barking and biting at the soldiers, rousing them to sound the gas alarm, saving many from injury.
Stubby also had a talent for locating wounded men between the trenches of the opposing armies; he would listen for the sound of English and then go to the location, barking until paramedics arrived or leading the lost soldiers back to the safety of the trenches. He even caught a German soldier mapping out the layout of the Allied trenches. The soldier called to Stubby, but he put his ears back and began to bark. As the German ran, Stubby bit him on the legs, causing the soldier to trip and fall. He continued to attack the man until the American soldiers arrived. For capturing an enemy spy, Stubby was put in for a promotion to the rank of Sergeant by the commander of the 102nd Infantry. He became the first dog to be given rank in the United States Armed Forces.
Stubby was injured during a grenade attack, receiving a large amount of shrapnel in his chest and leg. He was rushed to a field hospital and later transferred to a Red Cross Recovery Hospital for additional surgery. When Stubby became well enough to move around at the hospital, he visited wounded soldiers, boosting their morale.
By the end of the war, Stubby had served in 17 battles. He led the American troops in a pass and review parade and later visited with President Woodrow Wilson. He visited the White House twice and met Presidents Harding and Coolidge. Stubby was awarded many medals for his heroism, including a medal from the Humane Society which was presented by General John Pershing, the Commanding General of the United States Armies. He was awarded a membership in the American Legion and the Y.M.C.A.
When his master, J. Robert Conroy, began studying law at Georgetown University, Stubby became the mascot of the Georgetown Hoyas. He died in 1926.

Military service

Sergeant Stubby wearing his uniform and medals
Stubby served with the 102nd Infantry, 26th (Yankee) Division in the trenches in France for 18 months and participated in four offensives and 17 battles. He entered combat on February 5, 1918 at Chemin des Dames, north of Soissons, and was under constant fire, day and night for over a month. In April 1918, during a raid to take Seicheprey (Meurthe-et-Moselle), Stubby was wounded in the foreleg by the retreating Germans throwing hand grenades. He was sent to the rear for convalescence and, as he had done on the front, was able to improve morale. When he recovered from his wounds, Stubby returned to the trenches. After being gassed himself, Stubby learned to warn his unit of poison gas attacks, located wounded soldiers in no man's land, and — since he could hear the whine of incoming artillery shells before humans could — became very adept at letting his unit know when to duck for cover. He was solely responsible for capturing a German spy in the Argonne. Following the retaking of Château-Thierry by the US, the thankful women of the town made Stubby a chamois coat on which were pinned his many medals. There is also a legend that while in Paris with Corporal Conroy, Stubby saved a young girl from being hit by a car. At the end of the war, Conroy smuggled Stubby home.

After the war

After returning home, Stubby became a celebrity and marched in, and normally led, many parades across the country. He met Presidents Woodrow Wilson, Warren G. Harding and Calvin Coolidge. Starting in 1921, he followed Conroy to Georgetown University Law Center, and became the Georgetown Hoyas' team mascot. He would be given the football at halftime and would nudge the ball around the field to the amusement of the fans.
In 1926, Stubby died in Conroy's arms. His remains are featured in The Price of Freedom: Americans at War exhibit at the Smithsonian. Stubby was honored with a brick in the Walk of Honor at the United States World War I monument, Liberty Memorial, in Kansas City at a ceremony held on Armistice Day, November 11, 2006.

Medals and awards

Sergeant Stubby's brick at the WWI Memorial
Stubby was made a life member of the American Legion, the Red Cross, and the YMCA. In 1921, the Humane Education Society awarded him a special gold medal for service to his country. It was presented by General John Pershing.
Stubby was also featured in the Brave Beasts exhibit at the Legermuseum in Delft, The Netherlands.[1]

Friday, February 3, 2012

Bird Slide Show

I received some photos of birds attached to an email from a friend. They were so lovely I wanted to share them. I decided the most effective way to do this was to create a slide show. The soundtrack music is by Asher Quinn and it is a wonderful instrumental piece called "Sacred Sound" and it sets a perfect mood for this slide show. I do hope you enjoy it.