Friday, June 29, 2012

It’s the time of year to be digging around in your garden—But if there are pets running around the yard, be cautious of what you plant because the flowers that make your garden pretty could be toxic to pets.

We recommend the safest, pet-friendly plants:

Bee Balm
Butterfly flower
Coral Bells
Goat’s Beard
New Guinea Impatiens
Queen of the Meadow
Spider flower
Violet Yellow
Corydalis Zinnia

The non-plant concerns in the garden include fertilizers, pesticides, slug bait, mulch, and garden tools. Talk to your local nursery about the safest options, read labels carefully, and store everything safely in sealed containers or out of reach. Try natural products like vinegar for weeds, coffee grounds, beer, and salt for slugs, and soap and water as a natural pesticide. Avoid cocoa mulch as it comes from chocolate manufacturing and can contain substances that will cause minor chocolate poisoning (vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity) as well as general irritation to the mouth, stomach and intestines.

Many mature dogs (and almost all cats) are discriminate. They might sniff, but they're not inclined to eat plants. Grass is often the exception and in small amounts, common grasses are safe. Ornamental grasses can be irritating to the mouth, throat, and nose so if you have a big grass eater, it is safest to avoid these plants.

Remember that puppies and kittens are an exception. They will eat anything. It still makes most sense however to always pick the safest plants possible for flower gardens and deck pots.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Two different doctors' offices

Two patients limp into two different medical clinics with the same complaint. Both have trouble walking and appear to require a hip replacement. The first patient is examined within the hour, is x-rayed the same day, and has time booked for surgery the following week.
The second patient sees his family doctor after waiting three weeks for an appointment, then waits eight weeks to see a specialist, then gets an x-ray which isn't reviewed for another week, and finally has his surgery scheduled for six months from then.
Why the different treatment for the two patients?

The first is a golden retriever. The second is a senior citizen.