Category Archives: Health and Medical

Health advice and medical conditions affecting blind dogs

* Durham, French firms team to develop dry eye treatment for companion animals :: Editor’s Blog at WRAL TechWire

Source: Durham, French firms team to develop dry eye treatment for companion animals :: Editor’s Blog at WRAL TechWire

Posted Feb. 1, 2016 at 3:27 p.m.

Dye eye treatment coming for dogs

Wilma, who started going blind at the age of 2, belongs to Jim Shamp, Director of Public Relations for the N.C. Biotechnology Center.

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — ​Zoion Pharma of Durham has formed a collaboration with the French veterinary company Ceva Santé Animale to develop a treatment for eye diseases in companion animals.

The companies did not disclose financial terms of the collaboration which gives Ceva worldwide development and commercial rights to Zoion’s drug candidate ZP-1, which Zoion has been targeting as a dry-eye treatment for dogs.

Technically, it’s an epithelial sodium channel inhibitor for the treatment of veterinary ocular surface diseases involving a lack of surface hydration, such as keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS), commonly called dry eye.

“KCS is a disease that causes much pain and discomfort, particularly in dogs,” said Jon Alšėnas, D.V.M., president and CEO of Zoion. “If left untreated, severe cases may lead to blindness.”

Drug originally discovered by Parion Sciences

ZP-1 has successfully completed a proof-of-concept clinical trial in canine dry eye. It was originally discovered by Parion Sciences of Durham and then licensed to Zoion for veterinary use. [Read full article….]

Source: Durham, French firms team to develop dry eye treatment for companion animals :: Editor’s Blog at WRAL TechWire

* Epilepsy app for dog owners launches in Europe| Epilepsy Society

Source: Epilepsy app for dog owners launches in Europe| Epilepsy Society
20 January 2016

Epilepsy Society congratulates the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) on news that their app to help dog owners  improve the lives of pets with epilepsy will soon be translated into seven European languages.

The Pet Epilepsy Tracker, launched in the UK during National Epilepsy Week in May 2015 by the RVC, was developed with Epilepsy Society to map seizures and medication requirements.

Holger Volk, professor of veterinary neurology and neurosurgery at the RVC, said the app is a powerful tool in combatting the most common neurological conditions in dogs.

He said: “The main advantage for owners will be the control of an unpredictable and previously uncontrollable disease. Additionally, vets will gain a greater understanding of medication given to a dog, with a record that allows them to spot patterns in seizures.” Continue reading

* Steroid eye drops reverse cataracts in mice | Science/AAAS | News

Following successful tests on mice with cataracts, this new discovery looks set to revolutionise the treatment of cataracts in humans….

….And could also offer hope for the many dogs (and other pets) that develop cataracts, leading to impaired eyesight and even blindness.

Source: Steroid eye drops reverse cataracts in mice | Science/AAAS | News

Advance could lead to new treatments for millions afflicted with the condition

More than half of Americans over the age of 70 have cataracts, caused by clumps of proteins collecting in the eye lens. The only way to remove them is surgery, an unavailable or unaffordable option for many of the 20 million people worldwide who are blinded by the condition. Now, a new study in mice suggests eye drops made with a naturally occurring steroid could reverse cataracts by teasing apart the protein clumps.

[Read the full article….]

* November is Diabetes Month – for your pets – Kokomo Herald

Source: Kokomo Herald

November is Diabetes Month – for your pets

Monday, November 02, 2015 1:10 PM

Diabetes month | Kokomo HeraldIf your dog just can’t stop eating, or your cat seems to drink water all day long, the reason might be something you never thought of as a pet disease: diabetes.

In addition to the millions of people in the United States struggling with diabetes, the disease also affects dogs and cats. So doctors from BluePearl Veterinary Partners are hoping to raise awareness about the condition this November, which is designated as Pet Diabetes Month.

The good news is that dogs and cats can live long, happy lives with the disease. The bad news is that your dog is never going to learn how to give himself insulin shots. Pets who thrive with diabetes do so because of the committed people who take care of them. Continue reading

* Researchers Dig for Cause of Dog Diabetes

Source: Researchers Dig for Cause of Dog Diabetes

Disease looks similar to type 1 in humans, but with important differences

By Serena Gordon
HealthDay Reporter

poodle_OS18113 for Diabetes article

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 16, 2015 (HealthDay News) — Like many other animals, man’s best friend isn’t immune to developing diabetes. But new research suggests that while the disease in dogs looks similar to type 1 diabetes in people, there are some significant differences between man and beast.

“Dogs get diabetes at a pretty significant rate, about the same rate that humans get type 1 diabetes. But, they get it later in life,” explained study senior author Dr. Jake Kushner, chief of pediatric diabetes and endocrinology at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.

Using state-of-the-art imaging techniques, the researchers were able to look at pancreas tissue from 23 dogs with diabetes and 17 dogs without the disease. The pancreas is an organ that contains cells called islet cells. Those cells contain beta cells that produce the hormone insulin, which is necessary for turning the sugars in foods into fuel for the body.

Like humans with type 1 diabetes, dogs develop diabetes after a dramatic loss of beta cells. Without a significant number of beta cells, the pancreas is unable to produce enough insulin. That insulin must be replaced through injections.

But the researchers found some key differences when they dug deeper. [Read the full article…]

Source: Researchers Dig for Cause of Dog Diabetes

* Bayer launch a ‘site‘ for sore eyes – Pet Gazette

Source: Bayer launch a ‘site‘ for sore eyes – Pet Gazette

By Domonique De Friez

Dry eye affects around one in 22 dogs, and can affect up to 20 per cent of at risk breeds, yet in a recent survey, nearly half of dog owners were not aware that the condition could pose a potential risk to their pet.

To help address this, Bayer Animal Health has launched an educational website ( specifically designed to help dog owners understand more about dry eye; covering clinical signs, predisposed breeds, diagnosis and treatment, with the key message throughout encouraging owners to speak to their vet with any concerns.

The website has been launched to support Bayer’s new tear replacement product, Remend TM Dry Eye Lubricant Drops, which is intended for use as part of the management of dry eye, alongside prescription medication, after the condition has been diagnosed by a veterinary surgeon.  RemendTM Dry Eye Lubricant Drops provide long-lasting lubrication for the eyes, and have the advantage that they can be applied less frequently than the majority of artificial tear supplements currently on the market. [Read full article….]

Source: Bayer launch a ‘site‘ for sore eyes – Pet Gazette

* Cataracts could be treated with eye drops instead of surgery in future, study says – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)



PHOTO: In the future, cataracts could be treated with eye drops instead of costly surgery, scientists say. (ABC TV)

PHOTO: In the future, cataracts could be treated with eye drops instead of costly surgery, scientists say. (ABC TV)

An eye drop tested on dogs suggests that cataracts, the most common cause of blindness in humans, could one day be cured without surgery, a study says.

A naturally-occurring molecule called lanosterol, administered with an eye dropper, shrank canine cataracts, a team of scientists reported in Nature.

Currently the only treatment available for the debilitating growths, which affect tens of millions of people worldwide, is going under the knife.

While surgery is generally simple and safe, the number of people who need it is set to double in the next 20 years as populations age. And for many, it remains prohibitively costly.

[Read the full article….]

Source: Cataracts could be treated with eye drops instead of surgery in future, study says – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

* Seizures in dogs are distressing and dangerous


Jon Geller 10:29 a.m.   MDT   June 26, 2015

Jon Geller       (Photo: Courtesy photo)

Jon Geller (Photo: Courtesy photo)

First, there are some muscle twitches, and trembling of the head. The eyes will appear to glaze over, and possibly roll upward. Then there will be general muscle rigidity and stiffness, along with profuse salivation, uncontrolled and noisy chomping of the jaw and clattering of the teeth. Finally, a loss of balance and toppling over, followed by a paddling motion of all four legs. Loss of bladder and bowel control is likely. Your dog will not respond to your voice or touch. He has just had a seizure.

Seizures in dogs can be just as distressing for their owners as they are for the pets. They can occur at any time, unpredictably and out-of-the-blue. Older dogs and younger dogs are equally susceptible, depending on the cause. Seizures can be solitary episodes, occur in clusters or be continuous. Read the full article....

If your dog is having a seizure, do not try to intervene because you may be accidentally bitten. Get to a veterinarian as soon as possible afterward.

Your veterinarian’s job is to rule out any underlying cause of the seizure, initially by getting a thorough history, doing a physical exam and running a complete blood panel. Was there any exposure to toxins in the household or outside? Has your dog had a previous trauma that could have caused a brain injury? Could your dog have ingested medication being taken by anyone in the household? Has your dog had access to sugarless gum or other foods that might contain Xylitol? Has he been eating normally, and has he been acting abnormally in any other way? Is there any evidence of previous seizures, such as water or food bowls knocked over, or unexplained noises at night that might have been your dog falling over?

Some more common causes of seizures that can be identified include low blood glucose, possibly due ingestion of Xylitol (an alternative sweetener), a tumor of the pancreas (insulinoma) or brain (in an older dog), or inadequate calorie intake in a small dog without a lot of reserves. Alterations in some electrolytes such as sodium and calcium could potentially cause seizures, as well as infections or parasites. Scar tissue that has formed around previous brain trauma can trigger a seizure, just as a genetic malformation in the brain can cause one. Ingestion of psychoactive drugs, moldy food, compost, dead animals, certain plants and other various sundry items that dogs like to ingest can also lead to seizures.

In cases where no underlying cause is identified, epilepsy is diagnosed and considered to be hereditary. Epilepsy is most common in dogs 3-8 years old; when epilepsy is diagnosed, most likely the dog will be on an anti-convulsant medication for the rest of its life.

The most common medications used to treat seizures in dogs are valium (for immediate treatment) or combinations of drugs such as phenobarbitol, potassium bromide and Keppra. Several other medications are also used where the first wave treatments are ineffective. Depending on the size of your dog, the cost of the medications can vary greatly.

Seizures should never be ignored; untreated cluster or continuous seizures can lead to hyperthermia with body temperatures above 107 degrees and irreversible brain damage. Repeated seizures can cause “kindling,” which makes further seizures more likely. Most seizures can be effectively treated long-term with a combination of medications with minimal side effects.Cats can have seizures also, although it is less common. Your veterinarian will work with you to determine the cause and make the best plan for treatment.

Jon Geller is a veterinarian at the Fort Collins Veterinary Emergency and Rehabilitation Clinic.

Source: Seizures in dogs are distressing and dangerous

* DOG OBESITY: Overfeeding your pooch can lead to them developing type 2 diabetes | MK News


Posted: March 26, 2015

Obese dog 9733800-large

Dog obesity is a growing epidemic and cause various health problems for your pooch

Obese dogs are developing the same kind of health problems humans are such as type 2 diabetics and joint strains. Continue reading