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Reference Desk

Care Guides

    These care guides are written to help your clients understand common conditions, tests, and procedures, as well as to provide basic information about pet care. Use the Download Handout button on each care guide to generate a PDF for printing or emailing to your clients.

    Behavior and Training   |   Caring for Your New Pet   |   Choices and Considerations   |

    Common Conditions   |   Home Care   |    Losing a Pet   |   Pet Safety   |   Preventive Care    |

    Tests and Procedures   |   Wellness Care

    If you have Spanish-speaking clients, visit our new and growing Spanish Care Guide library!


    Behavior and Training

    Aggression in Dogs
    Agility Training for Dogs
    Avoiding Injury: Tips for Interpreting Signs of Aggression in Cats
    Avoiding Injury: Tips for Interpreting Signs of Aggression in Dogs
    Avoiding Injury: Tips for Interpreting Signs of Aggression in Horses
    Barking
    Canine Urine Marking
    Crate Training Your Puppy
    Disruptive Compulsive Behaviors (Stereotypies) in Horses
    Feline Hypervocalization
    Feline Urine Marking
    How to Keep Your Cat Off Tables and Counters
    Inappropriate Elimination
    Kitten Socialization
    Litterbox Training Your Cat
    Nipping And Mouthing By Dogs
    Non-recognition Aggression in Cats
    Pica and Coprophagy
    Puppy Socialization
    Puppy Training
    Separation Anxiety
    Submission Urination in Dogs
    Training Your Dog
    Training Your Dog to Wear a Muzzle

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    Caring for Your New Pet

    Bringing A New Kitten Home
    Caring for African Grey Parrots
    Caring for Amazon Parrots
    Caring for Aquatic Turtles
    Caring for Ball Pythons
    Caring for Bearded Dragons
    Caring for Boa Constrictors
    Caring for Budgerigars
    Caring for Chameleons
    Caring for Chinchillas
    Caring for Cockatiels
    Caring for Ferrets
    Caring for Gerbils
    Caring for Green Iguanas
    Caring for Guinea Pigs
    Caring for Hamsters
    Caring for Leopard Geckos
    Caring for Orphaned Kittens
    Caring for Orphaned Puppies
    Caring for Rabbits
    Caring for Sugar Gliders
    Caring for Your New Kitten
    Caring for Your New Puppy
    Cat Supplies
    Dog Licenses
    Dog Supplies
    Feeding Your New Kitten
    Feeding Your New Puppy
    Microchipping Your Pet
    Spaying or Neutering Your Pet

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    Choices and Considerations

    Adopting Instead of Buying a Pet
    Breeding Your Cat
    Breeding Your Dog
    Canine Clothing
    Cat Litter
    Children and Hygiene: Tips for Reducing Zoonotic Disease Risk
    Coping With Cancer
    Estimating Your Horse’s Age by Checking His or Her Teeth
    Getting a Pet Sitter
    Horse Trailering
    How to Examine a Horse at an Auction
    How to Find a Reputable Breeder
    How to Tell If Your Cat Is Sick
    How to Tell If Your Dog Is Sick
    Kenneling Your Cat
    Kenneling Your Dog
    Kitten or Adult Cat: Which Is Right for You?
    Pet Health Insurance: What's Right for Your Pet?
    Pet Sitter Instructions
    Puppy or Adult Dog: Which Is Right for You?
    Selecting a Groomer
    Selecting a New Kitten
    Selecting a New Puppy
    Traveling With Your Cat
    Traveling With Your Dog
    Understanding Pet Food Labels
    When to Consider Euthanasia

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    Common Conditions

    Addison's Disease
    Adrenal Gland Disease in Ferrets
    Alopecia
    Anal Sac Disease
    Anaplasma phagocytophilum Infection in Horses
    Anemia in Cats
    Anemia in Dogs
    Atopy
    Bartonellosis (Cat-Scratch Disease)
    Bite Wound Abscesses in Cats
    Bladder Stones and Kidney Stones
    Bordetella bronchiseptica
    Breast Cancer in Dogs and Cats
    Cancer in Horses
    Canine Adenovirus Type 2
    Canine Arthritis
    Canine Bladder Infections
    Canine Chronic Otitis
    Canine Coronavirus Infection
    Canine Diabetes Mellitus
    Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy
    Canine Distemper
    Canine Hip Dysplasia
    Canine Influenza
    Canine Obesity
    Canine Pancreatitis
    Canine Parvovirus
    Cardiac Arrhythmias in Cats
    Cardiac Arrhythmias in Dogs
    Cherry Eye (prolapsed nictitans gland)
    Chronic Kidney Disease
    Chronic Otitis
    Coccidiosis
    Cognitive Dysfunction
    Colitis
    Common Skin Diseases in Horses
    Congestive Heart Failure in Cats
    Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs
    Conjunctivitis
    Constipation and Obstipation in Cats
    Corneal Ulceration
    Cranial Cruciate Ligament Rupture
    Cushing's Disease
    Degenerative Myelopathy
    Demodectic Mange
    Dewclaw Removal
    Diabetes Insipidus in Cats
    Diabetes Insipidus in Dogs
    Diarrhea
    Ear Hematoma
    Ear Infections and Your Pet
    Ear Mites in Dogs and Cats
    Ehrlichiosis
    Elbow Dysplasia
    Endocarditis
    Entropion
    Eosinophilic Granuloma Complex
    Equine Colic
    Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis
    Eye Discharge
    Feline Arthritis
    Feline Asthma
    Feline Bordetellosis
    Feline Diabetes Mellitus
    Feline Dilated Cardiomyopathy
    Feline Distemper/Leukemia
    Feline Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
    Feline Immunodeficiency Virus
    Feline Leukemia Virus
    Feline Obesity
    Feline Pancreatitis
    Feline Stomatitis
    Feline Upper Airway Infections
    Feline Urethral Obstruction
    Feline Urinary Problems
    Flea Allergy Dermatitis (FAD)
    Food Allergy
    Gastric Dilatation–Volvulus
    Gastrointestinal Parasites in Cats
    Gastrointestinal Parasites in Dogs
    Giardiasis
    Heart Murmurs in Cats
    Heart Murmurs in Dogs
    Heartworm Disease in Cats
    Heartworm Disease in Dogs
    Heatstroke
    Hemangiosarcoma
    Hematuria
    Hepatic Lipidosis
    Hookworms
    Hypertension and Your Pet
    Hyperthyroidism and Your Cat
    Inflammatory Bowel Disease
    Immune-Mediated Hemolytic Anemia
    Immune-Mediated Thrombocytopenia
     Ingrown Toenails
    Insulinoma in Ferrets
    Intervertebral Disk Disease
    Kidney Disease in Pets
    Laryngeal Paralysis
    Leptospirosis
    Lice and Your Cat
    Lice and Your Dog
    Lice and Your Horse
    Lick Granuloma
    Lipoma
    Lumbosacral Stenosis
    Lymphoma (Lymphosarcoma)
    Malassezia Dermatitis
    Mast Cell Tumors in Cats
    Mast Cell Tumors in Dogs
    Medical Causes of Weight Loss
    Motion Sickness in Dogs
    Osteosarcoma and Your Pet
    Panosteitis
    Patellar Luxation
    Pemphigus
    Perianal Fistulae in Dogs
    Periodontal Disease in Cats
    Periodontal Disease in Dogs
    Pneumonia in Cats
    Pneumonia in Dogs
    Polyuria and Polydipsia
    Pregnancy in Cats
    Pregnancy in Dogs
    Proud Flesh
    Pulmonary Edema
    Pyoderma
    Pyometra
    Rabies
     Respiratory Distress
    Ringworm
    Roundworms
    Sarcoptic Mange
    Seborrhea
    Seizures and Epilepsy
    Skin Problems and Your Pet
    Tapeworms
    Thrombocytopenia (decreased platelet count)
    Tracheal Collapse
    Tying Up (External Rhabdomyolysis) in Horses
     Urinary Incontinence
    Urinary Tract Disease in Cats
    Urinary Tract Disease in Dogs
    Vaccine-Associated Sarcomas in Cats
    Valvular Heart Disease
    Vestibular Disease
    Vomiting
    Von Willebrand's Disease
    Whipworms

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    Home Care

    10 Ways to Help an Arthritic Dog
    Administering Injectable Medication to Your Cat
    Administering Injectable Medication to Your Dog
    Administering Medications to Your Cat
    Administering Medications to Your Dog
    Administering Subcutaneous Fluids to Your Cat
    Administering Subcutaneous Fluids to Your Dog
    Bathing Your Cat
    Bathing Your Dog
    Brushing Your Cat’s Teeth
    Brushing Your Dog’s Teeth
    Caring for Your Pet After Surgery
    Ear Cleaning
    Exercising Your Cat
    Exercising Your Dog
    The Importance of Grooming Your Pet
    Getting Your Cat Back on Its Feet
    Getting Your Dog Back on Its Feet
    Helping Your Arthritic Cat
    Helping Your Itchy Pet
    How to Administer Ear Medication to Your Cat
    How to Administer Ear Medication to Your Dog
    How to Administer Eye Medication to Your Cat
    How to Administer Eye Medication to Your Dog
    How to Administer a Topical Medication to Your Cat
    How to Administer a Topical Medication to Your Dog
    How to Give Your Cat a Pill
    How to Give Your Dog a Pill
    How to Give Your Cat Liquid Medicine
    How to Give Your Dog Liquid Medicine
    Medication Monitoring
    Obesity in Pets: Tipping the Scale in Your Favor
    Probiotics
    Refilling Medications
    Trimming Your Cat's Nails
    Trimming Your Dog's Nails
    Your Pet's Prescribed Diet

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    Losing a Pet

    Explaining Pet Loss to Children
    Grief in Dogs and Cats
    Coping With the Loss of a Pet

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    Pet Safety

    10 Household Plants That Are Dangerous to Dogs and Cats
    Acetaminophen Toxicity
    Antifreeze Toxicosis
    Aspirin Toxicosis
    Bee Stings in Dogs
    Chocolate Toxicosis
    Common Household Poisons
    First Aid and Your Pet
    Halloween Hints for Pets
    Have a Super Pet-Safe Super Bowl!
    Holiday Hazards to Pets
    Human Foods That Are Dangerous for Dogs and Cats
    Ibuprofen and Naproxen Toxicosis
    Macadamia Nut Toxicosis
    Pet Toy Safety
    Rodenticide Poisoning
    Summer Hazards and Your Cat
    Summer Hazards and Your Dog
    Winter Hazards and Your Cat
    Winter Hazards and Your Dog
    Xylitol Toxicosis

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    Preventive Care

    Canine Vaccine Recommendations
    Dental Care
    Dental Cleaning
    Deworming and Prevention of Gastrointestinal Parasites in Dogs and Cats
    Equine Botulism Vaccine
    Equine Vaccination Recommendations
    Feline Calicivirus
    Feline Chlamydiosis Vaccine
    Feline Vaccine Recommendations
    Flea and Tick Prevention
    Parasite Prevention and Deworming in Horses
    A Pet Owner's Guide to Flea Control
    Physical Examination and Canine Distemper Combination Vaccine
    Physical Examination and Feline Distemper Combination Vaccine
    Physical Examination and Feline Infectious Peritonitis Vaccine
    Polyomavirus Vaccine
    Preventing Heartworms and Fleas
    Rattlesnake Vaccine
    Streptococcus equi equi Infection (Strangles) and Vaccination in Horses
    Ticks and Your Cat
    Ticks and Your Dog
    West Nile Virus and Your Pet
    Why Do I Need to Vaccinate My Pet?

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    Tests and Procedures

    Abdominal Radiography
    ACTH Stimulation Test
    Alkaline Phosphatase Level
    Allergy Testing
    Antibiotic Therapy for Ear Infections
    Avian/Exotic Anesthesia
    Biopsy
    Blood Pressure Test
    BUN
    BUN and Creatinine Levels
    Calcium Level
    Canine Anesthesia
    Canine Heartworm Testing
    Cardiac Exam
    CBC and Chemistry Profile
    Chest Radiography
    Coggins Tests
    Creatinine Level
    Declaw Surgery in Cats
    Dental Exam
    Dental Radiography
    Desoxycorticosterone Pivalate (DOCP) for Addison’s Disease
    Dexamethasone Suppression Test
    Digoxin Level Test
    Ehrlichia Testing in Dogs
    Electrocardiography
    Endoscopy
    Equine Anesthesia
    Equine Ophthalmic Exam
    Fecal Centrifugation Testing
    Fecal Flotation and Giardia Test
    Fecal Smear
    Feline Anesthesia
    Fluorescein Stain
    Foreign Body Surgery
    Fructosamine Testing
    Fungal Culture
    Glaucoma Testing
    Glucose and Fructosamine Testing
    Heartworm Disease/Lyme Disease/Ehrlichiosis/Anaplasmosis “SNAP” Testing in Dogs
    Injectable Medication
    Injection of Adequan® Canine
    Joint Arthroscopy
    Laceration Repair
    Liver Disease Testing
    Lumpectomy
    Lyme Disease Tests and Vaccine
    Neutering
    Ophthalmic Exam
    Phenobarbital Level Test
    Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation
    Potassium Bromide Level Test
    Radiography
    Rehabilitative Medicine for Dogs With Osteoarthritis
    Schirmer Tear Test
    Serum Biochemistry Profile
    Shoeing
    Spay Surgery
    Tail Docking
    Thyroid Level Test/Thyroid Profile Tests/Canine Hypothyroidism
    Thyroid Level Test/Thyroid Profile Tests/Feline Hyperthyroidism
    Treating Heartworm Disease
    Ultrasonography
    Urinalysis and Early Kidney Disease Detection
    Urine Culture Test
    Urine Specific Gravity Test
    Vaccine Titer Testing

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    Wellness Care

    Avian Fecal Testing
    Avian Nutrition
    Canine Nutrition
    Canine Senior Wellness
    Caring for a Thin Horse
    Equine Wellness Care
    Examination and Rabies Vaccine
    Exotic Pet Fecal Testing
    Fecal Analysis
    Feline Distemper and Rabies
    Feline Nutrition
    Feline Senior Wellness
    Floating Equine Teeth
    Follow-up Examination
    Grooming Your Bird
    Grooming Your Cat
    Grooming Your Dog
    Grooming Your Horse
    Keeping Your Pet at a Healthy Weight
    Rabbit Nutrition
    The Importance of Ultraviolet (UV) Light for Reptiles
    Weight Check
    The Wellness Examination

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