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Dog Friendly Tips: Hookworms

Dogs get hookworms from larval migration in the uterus, from contact with the larvae in stool-contaminated soil or from ingesting the eggs after birth.

As with roundworms, the hookworm larvae can be transferred to the nursing pup from the mother's milk.

Chronic hookworm infestation is a common cause of older dogs not performing optimally, having poor feeding competence and weight maintenance, and having poor stamina.

Signs include
bloody diarrhea,
weight loss,
anemia, and
progressive weakness.

A diagnosis is made by examining the faeces for eggs under a microscope.

Dog Friendly Article: How Much Does Pet Adoption Cost?

"No matter how little money and how few possessions you own, having a dog makes you rich." -Louis Sabin

Written for the USA market - for the UK market, substitute references to adoption agencies for 'rescue centres' etc:

This is the part everyone wants to know about pet adoption, but no one wants to talk about. It is rare that the fees for adopting an animal are ever mentioned in those commercials we all see. That makes sense to a point. Why would you want to scare away potential owners by exposing the fees up front? Get them hooked, and then reel them in!

Adopting a dog or cat is not free. There, now that that is out of the way, we can continue. Thankfully adopting an animal does not cost thousands of dollars like adopting a child, but you should at least be prepared for the cost. Here are some things to remember.

Fees differ according to what organization you choose. It is important to ask the questions up front so you understand the fee schedule. The website at the ASPCA has a great tool here for searching for adoptable dogs and cats in your area.
Fees are higher for younger more desirable animals: sometimes as much as double the normal adoption amount. Fees can range anywhere from $80-$120 dollars for cats and $100-$500.00 for dogs.

Many adoption agencies require mandatory obedience training, which must be paid for by the adopting family. Often these classes are offered at a discount. Check with your agency for details.

Understanding the fees will help you not to be shocked when starting the process. It cannot be stressed too strongly, that knowing the cost before-hand will be invaluable in finalizing a successful adoption. Be sure to research all the agencies in your area, as fees can vary widely from agency to agency.

Why Does It Cost So Much?

Many people are understandably put off by the cost of adopting a shelter or rescue animal, when the cost of a "new" kitten or puppy may be the same cost or less. Often people ask why adoption should cost so much, and why can't it just be free? The answer to this is clear. Taking care of these animals in the shelters is not free. Many shelters and rescue agencies pay for surgeries, shots, spay/neuter, and a multitude of other veterinarian costs when they bring an animal into their care. They do this to ensure that adopting families are getting an animal that is as healthy as possible. Then there is the daily care of the animal. Food, shelter, and basic care, not to mention the cost of running the facility are all costs that are carried by the shelter or rescue agency. Your adoption fees help to ensure that they will be able to continue providing that care to many more dogs and cats in the future.

Most agencies do their best to keep your adoption costs at a minimum, and that is why choosing a reputable agency is very important. Remember that many shelters also have a network of Foster homes for their animals that provide care and a temporary home, in many cases the cost for this care comes directly out of the Foster parent's own pocket. These are volunteer homes that receive no financial compensation for their services. They do so strictly out of love for the animals they Foster.

Another benefit of the adoption fee is to put off people who are not able or willing to spend money on the care and training of their dog. If a $150 dollar adoption fee is too much, chances are you won't be willing or able to pay for the other costs associated with pet ownership. If adoption is something you are wanting to do, then save the money and pay it gladly, knowing that in most cases, the fee paid falls far short of the actual costs incurred by the agency in rescuing and caring for your new friend.

What services are covered?

While each organization is different, many shelters and rescue organizations have already paid to have your dog or cat spayed or neutered. In addition, an increasing number of agencies, like the ASPCA are installing microchips in the animals before they are adopted, to help with recovery of the animal should it run away, or be stolen. Also, some agencies offer a bonus of covering the veterinary bills (if using their recommended veterinarian) for a certain period of time and up to a certain dollar amount. You should consult with your agency before beginning the process.

When asking about the fees it is important to verify up front and in writing, if possible, what exactly you are getting for those fees. Some things to check:

Is the animal already spayed/neutered? (Be sure to get the vet record of this procedure, or a letter verifying it has been done.)

Has the animal had a thorough vet exam? (Get the records.)

Has the animal had a microchip implanted? (Get the paperwork.)

Has the animal been tested and treated for parasites, including heartworms? (Make sure to get in writing that the animal is heartworm negative.) Heartworm treatment can be very costly, so make sure to verify that this has been done before deciding to adopt. Some adoptions come with a year supply of heartworm medication. You will want to be sure to ask about this ahead of time.

In larger breeds it is important to check whether x-rays have been done of the hips, and whether there are any records to rule out hip dysplasia.

In Conclusion

This article was not intended to discourage you, but to give you the information you need in making your decision. As with any other major decision, having the information up front can save you a lot of money and heartache later. Rest assured, that no amount of money could be traded for the love and loyalty of a family pet. It will be money well spent!

Fees are estimates only and may be higher or lower. Be sure to check with the agency of your choice for exact costs

Some fees may be tax deductable if made to a non-profit. Be sure to check with your tax preparer for this possibility.

For more information, consider my eBook for Kindle at

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