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Never ignore these 6 signs in your pets



From Dr. Cynthia Maro

There are times when your pets are begging for extra treats, attention, or play time and it’s safe to ignore, but some signs that can start out as simple nuisances can be leading indicators of very serious health problems.

Knowing which signs require your attention and action can be life saving for your companion. The sooner you alert your veterinarian to these symptoms, the more likely they are to make a diagnosis and get your furry friend on the road to restoring health.

Below are some key indicators of illness.

1. Panting, Increased Breathing Rate, Open-Mouth Breathing: Panting can be a sign of pain, heat stroke, fever, or respiratory or cardiovascular problems.

A pet’s respiratory rate will increase as the need for oxygen increases, which can occur with all of the aforementioned diseases.

Cats always prefer to breathe through their nose. So if you breathe with your mouth open it is a sure sign of stress that can be the result of extreme stress, asthma, upper airway obstruction, heart or lung disease, or even cancer.

Increased respiratory rates also occur in infections that cause very high fevers or hyperthermia from heat stroke.

Wheezing that persists after a game of play and adequate rest should be taken seriously.

Conditions such as congestive heart failure, anemia, pneumonia, or pleural effusion (a condition where fluid fills the chest cavity and compresses the lungs) all need to be diagnosed through blood tests and x-rays.

All of these disorders can be life-threatening, and in cases such as heat stroke, immediate treatment through an emergency room visit is needed.

2. Salivation: This may be a sign of gastrointestinal discomfort, nausea, a foreign body in the mouth or throat, an oral tumor or infection, a sialocele (disorder of the salivary glands), a lymphoma or a tooth root abscess.

Diagnosis may include sedated oral inspection and x-rays.

3. Increased thirst: Thirst will increase slightly in hot weather or with an increase in salty snacks (think jerky, bully sticks, and rawhide). Prolonged increases in water consumption must be considered as it may be due to diabetes mellitus, diabetes insipidus, kidney disease or kidney failure, VBD (vector-borne disease, such as Lyme disease), an endocrine or hormonal imbalance such as Cushing’s disease or thyroid disease.

Diagnosis requires urinalysis, blood chemistry tests, and in some cases, more expensive hormone tests and ultrasounds.

4. Odor Change: Although pets can sometimes have an odor when it rains, a persistent or foul odor is often the first sign of illness.

“A smelly pet” can indicate something as small as a superficial skin or ear infection, or something much more serious, including an infected anal gland or a deep ear infection. These diseases can be treated very effectively by your veterinarian.

Some other worrying issues include odors from oral infections or tumors, deep skin infections, hormonal imbalances, diabetes, internal or external yeast or bacterial infections, anal gland narrowing, ulcerated skin tumors, or sinus infections.

5. Appetite Change: Lack of or increased appetite in pets should never be ignored.

Often times a pet has an increased appetite when they develop diabetes, but this sign can also be associated with certain types of cancer or tumors such as insulinoma, hyperthyroidism, Cushing’s disease, or adrenal cancer.

Pets often have a decreased appetite when battling infections, in pain, or having gastrointestinal disorders. The list of diseases that affect appetite is quite long.

6. Vomiting and diarrhea: Bowel discomfort or intermittent gastrointestinal symptoms (such as spitting once a week or even once a month) are signs that some part of the digestive process is not working properly.

Diagnoses such as intestinal parasites, food sensitivity, liver, gallbladder, and pancreatic diseases can all be treated with medication, but require a visit to the vet for appropriate treatment.

Your pet’s vet will know what tests to order to get insight into the cause of any of the signs mentioned.

If your fears of a negative or poor diagnosis are preventing you from taking action, please discuss this with your veterinarian. It’s always best to investigate early.

If you are concerned about high costs, your vet will want to know both your time and financial budget to care for your companion.

Not only can your quick attention to the warning signs of illness help your pet get better, but they can also reassure you, knowing that your companion will be comfortable, pain-free, and well-cared for.

Dr. Cynthia Maro is a veterinarian at Ellwood Animal Hospital in Ellwood City and Chippewa Animal Hospital in Chippewa Township. She writes a bi-weekly column on animal care and health issues. If you have a topic you’d like to address, email

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List of resources for Hawaii families impacted by the water crisis in the Pearl Harbor-Hickam area



HONOLULU (KHON2) – During a virtual town hall meeting on Thursday December 2nd, the Navy confirmed that it discovered petroleum products in water samples Taken from the Red Hill drinking water fountain.

Hundreds of military families living near Pearl Harbor complained of stomach ache, nausea, and other health problems. There have even been reports of pets affected after drinking the tap water.

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Frustration is also mounting among families who do not live in military accommodation. Schools nearby – including the Catholic Academy of the Holy Family, Red Hill and Pearl Harbor Elementary Schools – are affected. The Navy says it is unknown where the petroleum products come from.

The military is working with affected families to temporarily relocate them to hotels.

BWS closes its Halawa shaft as a precautionary measure following contamination of the Navy water system

The Navy has now set up a website for those affected Resources and Updates. The Army has also formed Task Force Ohana to provide assistance to residents of the Aliamanu Military Reservation (AMR) and Red Hill. follow Updates on their Facebook page here.

  • The Ministry of Health (DOH) recommends all users of the marine water system Avoid using the water for drinking, cooking, or oral hygiene. Marine water system users smell of fuel of their water should avoid using the water for drinking, cooking, bathing, washing dishes, washing clothes or for oral hygiene (brushing teeth, etc.).
  • Affected residents are encouraged to contact the Navy at (808) 448-2570 and the DOH at to report complaints. Please give your name, your telephone number, the address concerned and information on the smell / taste or color of the drinking water.
  • The US Army Garrison Hawaii advises anyone who has water filter systems for refrigerators or sinks to turn them off until further notice.

Dog first to signal to a Pearl Harbor family that something is wrong with the tap water

Task Force Ohana lists the following resources in response to the ongoing water crisis:

  • Residents are asked to Report bad smells or substances in your water at (808) 656-3279.
  • the 24/7 emergency hotline of the family assistance center can be reached at 1-877-406-2148. Members of the Task Force Ohana team are available to connect you to resources.
  • A Center for family help was located at AMR Community Center, 1788 Bld., 182 Kauhini Road, to coordinate housing logistics, preventive medical services, and other matters.
  • Medical check-ups: If you have any health concerns, please come to the Family Assistance Center at Aliamanu Military Reservation Community Center, 1788 Boulevard, 182 Kauhini Road to speak to a doctor to coordinate medical care. Health teams are available daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 1-800-874-2273 or can securely send messages to their provider via the MHS GENESIS PATIENT PORTAL.
  • Food and water: The soldiers will again be handing out water from 9 a.m. and searching the neighborhoods of AMR and Red Hill. Breakfast is served from 7 am to 9 am in front of the AMR Community Center. Dinner is served from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
  • Aliamanu Child Development Center, 114 Kauhini Road, 1783 Bldg.
  • Red Hill Camp, 1217 Icarus Way
  • Aliamanu Express, Aliamanu Drive and Bougainvillea Loop, Bldg. 880
    • * The express pick-up point also offers water bottles to pick up
  • Click here for guidelines on water storage.

Drinking water is available daily from 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. until further notice. Local residents should bring their own containers for collecting water. Island Palm Communities also has bottled water available at Aliamanu and Red Hill community centers from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM daily.

  • Shower stations are available daily from 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the AMR Community Center.
  • Additional showers are available at Fort Shafter, Helemano Military Reservation, Schofield Barracks, and Tripler Army Medical Center. Click here for details.

The Hawaiian Navy Region Commander has determined that Temporary Housing (TLA) is required for service members and their loved ones affected by the current water crisis. This authorization is limited to active conscripts who certify themselves that they are affected, from December 3rd, 2021 to December 12th, 2021 and in the following municipalities:

  • red hill
  • Catlin Park
  • Halsey terrace
  • Radford Terrace
  • Doris Miller
  • Hale Na Koa
  • Earhart Village
  • Officer’s field
  • Moanalua terrace
  • Aliamanu Military Reservation (administered by the US Army Garrison Hawaii)

Service members can make their own reservations. For those who have questions or need additional help, the following call and walk-in centers are available:

  • Water Assistance Call Center (preferred option with 24 hour availability): (808) 789-5287
  • EFAC (0700-2000): Walk-ins at the Military Family Support Center, (866) 525-6676

The government has contracted accommodation for service members who are unable to find accommodation themselves or are waiting for a refund. Contact the Water Assistance Call Center at (808) 789-5287.

All service members requesting TLA, whether self-service or via government contracted accommodation, GOT TO Fill out the hotel and data request form and send it to or within 24 hours.

The Navy says more guidance will be released soon for non-eligible renters (retirees, civilians, etc.) residing in the listed areas. Click here for more informations.

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Mental health benefits of visiting UK Woodland’s estimated at £185 million



Visits to the UK’s forests promote mental health and save an estimated £ 185 million in treatment costs annually, according to a landmark report released today (December 4th) by Forest Research.

The report, published during National Tree Week and funded by the Forestry Service, Scottish Forestry and Welsh Government, marks the first time the health and wellbeing benefits of UK forests have been quantified.

For England specifically, forests save £ 141 million in mental illness-related costs including doctor visits, prescriptions, inpatient care, social services and the number of days lost due to mental health problems. The numbers are based on evidence of the reduced incidence of depression and anxiety caused by regular forest visits.

During the coronavirus pandemic, the prevalence of mental illness has increased. Access to trees, forests, woodlands and other natural environments, including city parks and green spaces, has become even more important for individuals to support and maintain their wellbeing. Of the visits to all green spaces in the past 10 years, from farmland and countryside to parks and playgrounds, 14.1% of them were in forests.

In urban areas, trees and forests are essential to communities as they promote wellbeing, reduce pollution and improve the quality of life. To back this up, the report finds that the value of street trees from avoided costs of antidepressant related mental health problems is £ 16 million.

The report also notes that the mental health value of forest visits is estimated at just over £ 11 billion and another £ 1 billion for street tree mental health over the next 100 years.

Forestry Commission Chairman Sir William Worsley said:

This report shows the importance of investing in healthy trees and forests. It makes medical sense because it means better health for everyone; makes good economic sense by saving society millions of pounds and makes good ecological sense by helping us address the dual challenges of climate change and biodiversity loss.

At this National Tree Week, let’s all go outside, enjoy urban and rural trees, and enjoy the benefits of being close to nature.

Almost half of the population say they spend more time outdoors than they did before the pandemic, while the majority of adults surveyed by Forest Research agree that their happiness in the forest and nature has increased.

As the youngest host of the COP26 climate summit and President of the G7, the UK is leading the climate change agenda. Today’s report highlights the role of nature as our most valuable asset and affirms the dependence of our economy, livelihood and well-being on nature.

The government has pledged to triple tree planting rates by the end of this parliament. The new England Trees Action Plan will enable unprecedented tree planting rates and help create diverse tree landscapes across the country that benefit wildlife, the environment and human wellbeing.

Read the report “Assessing the Mental Health Benefits of Forests” here.

For more information on wellness opportunities in the forests of our countries, please visit the Forestry England website.

Supporting quotes:

Welcoming the study, Scottish Government Environment Minister Màiri McAllan said:

Scotland’s forests and forests offer so many environmental, social and economic benefits to society. During the Covid-19 pandemic, access to forests has become even more important for individuals to support and maintain their well-being.

It is generally accepted that staying in the woods can have beneficial effects in relieving conditions such as depression and anxiety. This study is important because we now have a clear monetary value of how much our forest resource could be worth in tackling poor mental health.

Welsh Deputy Climate Secretary Lee Waters said:

Earlier this year I called to arms nationwide to plant more trees in Wales and one of the reasons for doing so was the benefits they have for our health and spiritual wellbeing.

I welcome this report, which is fascinating to read and provides even more evidence of why we need to plant more and more trees if we are to create a stronger, greener and fairer Wales.

In order to achieve net zero, according to the Climate Committee, we have to plant 43,000 hectares of new trees by 2030, and 180,000 hectares by 2050. That means planting around 86 million trees in the next nine years. To achieve this, we have great ambitions, including creating a network of high quality multipurpose forests across Wales, and today’s report really shows how many positive impacts this work will have.

Stephen Buckley, Head of Information for the mental health charity Mind, said:

Spending time outdoors – especially in the woods or near water – can help with mental health problems such as anxiety and mild to moderate depression. This could be due to the fact that regular physical activity and social contact are combined with being in nature. Being outside in natural light can also help if you have seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a type of depression that affects people at certain times of the year or year. While many of us like to hibernate in the winter, it can be good for your physical and mental health to be outside in the countryside and take advantage of the little daylight we get.

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Boots issues recall of 31 own-brand vitamins and health supplements over banned substance



Boots Ireland has recalled 31 of its own brand of vitamins and supplements due to the presence of a substance that could pose a risk if taken for long periods of time.

The recall was published today in the Irish Food Safety Authority’s (FSA) latest food alert.

“The products contain a substance called 2-chloroethanol, which is a recognized reaction product of ethylene oxide,” said the FSAI.

“Ethylene oxide is a pesticide that is not approved for use in food sold in the EU, but is approved for use in other countries outside the EU. Although the consumption of the contaminated product does not pose an acute risk to health, there is an increased risk with continued consumption of contaminated food over a longer period of time, so exposure to this substance must be minimized. “

All affected products were made in the UK.

In a statement tonight, Boots Ireland said: “The safety of our customers is of paramount importance to us. As a precautionary measure, we have chosen to recall a small number of lots of selected Boots vitamins and supplements from our stores in Ireland. Consumption of the affected products does not pose an acute health risk.

“If customers have purchased one of the listed items and they have an expiration date before or equal to August 2023, we ask that you stop taking them and return them to any Boots store for a full refund. We apologize for the inconvenience this has caused and if customers have any further questions, our customer service team can be contacted at 1800 719824. “

The affected products include popular multivitamins as well as vitamins B, C, D, zinc and iron as well as vegan formula multivitamins and multivitamins for children.

Other dietary supplements affected are those used during pregnancy and breastfeeding, dietary supplements to strengthen the immune system, joints and conception, and products for men and women over the age of 50. All affected products have a best before date of August 2023.

The full recall list is as follows, including the barcode.

3586286 Design support 30×6 50-45093-58628-9

1701819 Pregnancy Support 90×6 50-45091-70181-3

8100373 Complete woman 50+ 30×6 50-45098-10037-4

8100365 Full man 30 50-45098-10036-7

8100381 Complete man 50+ 30×6 50-45098-10038-1

8369437 Children Chewy AZ 30×6 50-45098-36943-6

1548484 immune defense 30×6 50-45091-54848-7

4082869 zinc 180s 50-45094-08286-5

8188661 Ginseng & Multivitamin Tablets 50-45098-18866-2

1454730 Calcium, Vitamin D & K1 tablets 50-00167-07963-0

8579377 Vitamin D 75ug 90s 50-45098-57937-8

8597073 Calcium with Vitamin D&K chewable 90er 50-45098-59707-5

8578818 Iron & Vitamin C Tablets 50-45098-57881-4

8380392 HS B vitamins 60×6 50-45098-38039-4

8380406 Vegan Vitamin D 90s 50-45098-38040-0

8593922 Good Gut Lacatase 60s 50-45098-59392-3

8599351 Vegan AZ 60s 50-45098-59935-2

4781465 Pregnancy Support Plus tablets 30 + 30×6 50-45094-78146-1

8578966 Selenium 60s 50-45098-57896-8

8721181 Vegan Duo AZ 30 + 30 50-45098-72118-0

8579121 Chewable Calcium & HS Vitamin D 60s 50-45098-57912-5

8847916 Meatless Diet Support 50-45098-84791-0

8847932 Dairy-free food supplement 50-45098-84793-4

8847940 Egg-free dietary supplement 50-45098-84794-1

1156470 Vitamin C 500mg and Vitamin D 10ug 50-45091-15647-7

8902321 Nagel Boost 60×6 50-45098-90232-9

2513048 Turmeric 4000 mg tablets 50-45092-51304-0

2512653 Joint lock active 30×6 50-45092-51265-4

2512637 Joint Duo30 + 30×6 50-45092-51263-0

4781457 BTS pregnancy support 30s 50-45094-78145-4

8100349 Breastfeeding tablets 50-45098-10034-3

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