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Aggression in Dogs Causes of the Increase

I am not an ethologist, but from more than 30 years of clinical experience, I have witnessed ...

Aggression in dogs: the increase

I am not an ethologist, but from more than 30 years of clinical experience, I have witnessed the increase of the aggression in dogs. Fioroni, an author of a famous dog encyclopedia, gave repeatedly serene descriptions of every breed. Of course, the subjects studied were of good character, and always balanced.

When this animal was still “normal”, a friend of humans, all the dogs were fundamentally good and affectionate, even those used as watchdogs or for defense. In my clinic, I could easily visit subjects of seventy or eighty kilo without a muzzle and without the slightest hint of aggression. Moreover, in these times, the number of daily visits for a veterinarian was very high, so it was possible to have a very impressive series. The dogs that bit were few; they stood out. The tawny cocker, whom many of them were very unpredictable and could ”soak” you with painful bites that tended to give infection. And so, the poor Fioroni, as I heard him described not so long ago, was a poor fool as according to him all dogs were good. He was absolutely right: when the dogs were “normal”, the percentage of “bad” subjects was objectively low.

Aggression in dogs: the reason why

Unfortunately, for reasons dependent upon changes in the human environment, the situation has worsened in the years between 1978 and 1990. There has been an appearance of a disproportionate number of pack leader subjects and a progressive increase of aggression in certain breeds. The controversy regarding breeds considered dangerous continues and the technicians are almost convinced that they don’t exist and that the problem is just the owners, without even questioning the premise. Yet, going to the premises precisely (Parmenides, the Philosopher, asserted that if the premises are wrong, all the consequences are wrong), we realize that we start from erroneous belief. If we judge everything carefully BEFORE commencing any work, it would avoid a series of incredible failures, misinterpretations, and outrageous mistakes. One of the fundamentals in the canine world, born from the fact described above, that such animals have changed impressively within the last 35 years, with the peak of the phenomenon between 1975 to 1995, both in behavior and diseases are afflicted. Moreover, these changes very fast or we experienced in person or can be perceived only by experts or older “dated” books. Who was born in certain historical period is led to believe that what he sees is the norm and of course act accordingly. Anyone who, like me have lived those years, dealing with many animals daily (we veterinaries for small animals were very few, and for the sector contemporary boom, a large number of clients), can easily confirm that the dogs were tame (apart from the obvious a few exceptions). Very sweet to children and absolutely reliable, ready, however to become fierce in the presence of danger, of a threat in case of absence of the owner from home. Simply, they were guarding and defending the owner or the children only when it was necessary.

The situation has changed strikingly in the last few years. Puppies at the age of 20 days, maybe still with semi closed eyes, have had more than 60/70% of subjects intolerant to manipulation, hyperactive, and refusing to come close to visitors. Before, I had advised owners to choose the liveliest puppy, which would grow into a nice pack leader. Better now to opt for the more calm which in most cases will become a normal dog.

There is an old proverb that says “dog doesn’t eat dog”, but from those years, it has become common to witness puppies slaughtered by adult dogs and fierce, often fatal, quarrels among adults. In this regard, it was very common, before this change, to see “aggressions” of small dogs towards large dogs without the giants deigning any consideration. These dogs would never have dreamed of biting a child and would stoically endure their harassment. Obviously, I have always insisted on the need to educate children to respect animals and never torture them, but in every case, the printed ancestral laws inside every dog prevented this type of reaction. These laws no longer work, and any expert is forced to warn owners of almost any breed on the possible risk of an attack, often for a futile reason.

Dr. Sergio Canello

Forza10 Founder and Head of SANYpet’s Research and Development Department Veterinary surgeon and international expert in food-borne diseases

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Urinary Tract Infections in cats, also known as “UTIs” are caused by colonized bacteria in the urinary tract. The UTI can affect the cat’s urinary system, bladder, and urethra. This type of infection can be particularly painful for your cat and symptoms can sometimes be associated with other health concerns such as kidney failure. It is very important to recognize the symptoms early as some cases of this condition can be fatal. 


How To Tell if Your Cat May Have a UTI


If you think that your cat may have a urinary tract infection it is important to find out in order to have it treated as soon as possible. We have included a list of symptoms for you to watch out for. If you recognize these symptoms you should seek veterinary assistance. While UTIs affect both male and female cats, some cats may be at higher risk than others such as cats that are older, overweight, or have diabetes. 


UTI Symptoms and Warning Signs for Cats:

  • Fever
  • Urinating is done in short bursts rather than a continuous stream
  • Spending more time than usual in the litter box
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Crying or whining while urinating
  • Your cat is urinating before it can get to the litter box
  • Urine with any trace of blood
  • Excessive licking of the genital area
  • Unusual discomfort around the rear area when touched or pet
  • The cat is lethargic 
  • Urine smell is stronger than normal 


Why Is My Cat Having Frequent Urinary Tract Infections?

There are many reasons why your cat may be suffering from repeat UTIs, some may be preventable. While there is no way to guarantee your cat will not have another UTI, there may be some things you can do to reduce the likelihood of it happening. In some cases the cause could simply be the age of your cat. While there is nothing that can be done about that, other variables like the cat’s diet can be modified to help. 

Other causes of UTIs in Cats:

  • Poor hygiene near the genitile area 
  • Bladder stones
  • External or Internal Injuries
  • Tumors
  • FIV, also known as feline immunodeficiency virus


What Can I Do To Prevent Or Reduce The Likelihood of a UTI in my Cat?

No cat owner wants to see their beloved pet suffer from a UTI. To keep your cat feeling great and reduce the chances of a UTI occurring, follow these guidelines:

  • Always provide your cat with fresh water
  • Ensure your cat’s litter trays are clean and easily accessible 
  • Keep an extra litter tray available 
  • Maintain a stress-free environment for your cat 

By following these guidelines you can do your part to help keep your cat healthy, happy, and free of urinary tract infections. If you suspect any symptoms, keep an eye on your pet’s behavior, if symptoms persist or worsen, contact your vet. 


Which Remedies or Treatments Can Be Used When Your Cat Has a UTI?

While the severity of the infection plays a key role in what treatments may be used to help your cat when it has a UTI, a minor infection may be treatable at home. 

Due to their acidity, cranberries, just like in humans, may be used to help cure a urinary tract infection. The acidity in the cranberries can be effective at lowering the pH of your cat’s urine, helping to reduce the symptoms, or beat the infection altogether. While you may be tempted to treat your cat’s UTI with cranberry juice, it may be better to use cranberry pills or powder due to the high sugar content of cranberry juice. 

Another treatment option for your cat’s UTI is apple cider vinegar. This also helps reduce the pH in your cat’s urine. Since your cat will most likely not want to eat the apple cider vinegar on its own, you can try adding a half teaspoon to their food each day or mix it with an onion-free broth. 

Before giving your cat cranberries or apple cider vinegar, test their urine for alkaline levels with an at-home kit or specialized cat litter. You can also have the test done professionally by your veterinarian. 

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The pancreas is a gland within the abdomen that helps digest food and control blood sugar levels. When the pancreas becomes inflamed, this is known as pancreatitis. It is important to be aware of the two types of pancreatitis in dogs, acute and chronic pancreatitis. While acute pancreatitis can be reversed it can come on strong and lead to extreme illness. Chronic pancreatitis occurs when permanent changes have occurred in the pancreatic tissue. 

This means that while a case of pancreatitis can pass on its own after a short period of time, sometimes it can be a lingering issue.  

Symptoms of Pancreatitis in Dogs 

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  • Vomiting
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  • Fever 
  • Low body temperature
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargic
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Dehydration
  • Irregular heartbeat

While some of these symptoms can pass on their own and do not necessarily mean your dog is suffering from pancreatitis, if you see them lasting for more than a day it may be time to consult your veterinarian.

Although your vet may be able to diagnose your dog based on symptoms, they will most likely need to do some testing to be sure. These tests usually consist of either bloodwork or an ultrasound which will allow the vet to see what is going on within the dog’s digestive system. 

The Potential Causes of Pancreatitis in Dogs

Now that we have a better understanding of the symptoms of pancreatitis in dogs, it is time to look at what causes it. While the cause of pancreatitis is often unknown, here are some factors that it can frequently be associated with: 

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  • A poor or unbalanced diet
  • Excessive consumption of human food
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  • Hypothyroidism 
  • Severe blunt trauma near the abdomen
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Some medications and toxins  
  • In some instances it could simply be genetics. Some breeds such as Miniature Schnauzers and small terriers may be more likely to suffer from pancreatitis than others. 

It is important to keep these potential causes in mind and to do what you can to avoid any habits that could contribute to your dog developing pancreatitis. Beyond that, veterinarians agree that a diet rich in fiber along with probiotics can be effective in reducing the symptoms of pancreatitis in dogs. It may even help them recover sooner in the event that they are already dealing with it. 

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