Winter Issue 2019
How to Keep Your Exotic Pets Warm in the Winter
Most exotic pets are originally from warm and/or tropical climates. Their bodies have been built to endure higher temperatures so cold weather can be detrimental. In order to ensure the brisk chill of the winter doesn’t put your pet’s health at risk, keep the following tips in mind when preparing for the changing season:
If mobile, move the enclosure away from windows and doors to the outside. Animals near these structures are at risk for icy drafts that can drastically decrease the temperature of their habitat.
Seal off windows and unused doors with a shrink wrap insulation kit to keep the cold out.
At night, consider covering the cage with a blanket. Using a cage cover after the sun goes down can work wonders for trapping heat and maintaining a more appropriate temperature.
Use caution when heating with wood burning fireplaces, kerosene, and electrical space heaters. These methods can emit smoke and fumes that may pose a threat to your pet’s health.
Pets burn extra calories trying to stay warm, so it is essential that they keep eating. Make sure to always have fresh food and water available.
Be sure to have an ample supply of fresh water stored for your pet. In bad storms, if you lose electric power or if your pipes freeze, you may also lose your water supply. Given the fact that many exotic pets have very high-water requirements due to their small sizes and fast metabolism, these pets can become dehydrated quickly.
Closely monitor your pet for early signs of exposure. When a pet’s core temperature is lowered, it is likely that their immune system is not working as well.
If you have any concerns regarding the winter weather and your exotic pet, contact our clinic.
Pet Insurance: Questions to ask when choosing a plan
We all love our pets, and many consider their pets to be their furry children. When they get sick, we want to be able to take care of them properly. With technological advances in veterinary medicine, much more is available now in both diagnostics and treatment. Procedures such as MRI's, CAT scans, chemotherapy, and radiation treatment are all common, but they can be quite expensive. Many people are now considering pet health insurance to help with the costs. It is important to ask the correct questions when interviewing companies that offer this insurance, so you know what you're getting.
Pet health insurance is different from "human" health insurance. With pet insurance the doctor is paid first and then the pet owner is reimbursed by the insurance company. There are several companies that offer health insurance to pets in the United States. Pet insurance companies offer different levels of care. Basic plans cover accidents and illness, and premium plans cover all aspects of health and wellness.
Most plans do not cover pre-existing illnesses, so be prepared to ask questions about future coverage when your pet has been seen previously for problems such as ear infections or vomiting.
It is important to ask if your pet is evaluated for coverage when first obtaining the insurance, or with each renewal. For instance, if after you get the insurance, your dog's ear becomes infected and the insurance company pays the claim, ask will additional ear infections be covered in subsequent years?
Many plans do not cover "genetic" diseases. With advances in DNA studies, veterinary medicine is discovering more and more diseases have a genetic basis. It is important to ask what diseases they consider to be genetic for the breed that you own.
Some policies cover only up to a certain age of your pet. Some do not cover prescription drugs or dental cleanings. Others have a yearly or lifetime dollar limit. Most companies have a deductible and then pay a percentage of the bill, usually 80% to 90%. Some companies have a set dollar reimbursement for each problem or procedure.
Today only a small percentage of pets are covered by health insurance, but this is expected to change in the future. More than 1600 companies, including Google and Office Depot, offer pet health insurance as an optional employee benefit.
To read reviews and compare plans, you can visit: petinsurancereview.com
Caring Animal Hospital * (517) 694-6766 * www.caringanimalhospital.net