A Message from the Vet - January 2013
New Year Pet Resolutions


A new year. Did you get caught up in "last minute" and urgent issues in the final weeks of 2012? The frantic activity, meshed with the holiday season social activities and the whole gift exchange, ended abruptly on midnight December 31st. So, besides a collective sigh of relief, it gave us all time to reflect on how to behave in the next twelve months.

I read a piece by Dr. Ron DeHaven, executive vice president of the American Veterinary Medical Association, in which he outlined 5 new year's resolutions. I quote from his article:

  • Identification: A microchip is critical, but also registering with the microchip provider.
  • Socialization/Behavior Training: Preventing behavior issues makes far more sense, and early socialization can do that.
  • Exercise: It's very good for pets and also for pet owners.
  • Emergency Planning: Pets have become a part of the family and need to be included in an emergency planning. And the operative word is "plan".
  • Preventive Care: We are seeing more preventive illness, from obesity to dental disease to parasites. Keeping pets healthy in the first place saves lives, and also saves pet owners money.
In addition to Dr. DeHaven's, I suggest 5 more resolutions to consider for 2013:
  • Make a charitable donation to an animal-friendly organization. Consider a monetary gift to Heifer International, a gift of food or supplies to the Hawaiian Humane Society, or a gift of time as a volunteer to a local private shelter like Joey's Feline Friends.
  • Pick up after your dog. Keep the beach and sidewalks clean and safe in Kailua, and be a responsible pet owner.
  • Rescue a lost or injured animal: if you find a lost dog or cat, call the Humane Society, and bring it into our veterinary clinic for a free microchip scan. If you find an injured bird, take the time to place it in a box and bring it to our clinic. We won't charge for wildlife care (but we do accept donations to our "wildlife fund"); read more about how to handle lost or injured wildlife here.
  • Adopt a pet from the local shelter.
  • Write a letter to our new congresspeople. Ask them to support the ban on US slaughterhouses for horses; read more on horse slaughterhorses here.
I wish you all a safe, healthy, and prosperous New Year!

John Haddock, DVM

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Last updated 2014 May 10.