Petersen Pet Hospital - May 2023

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Pets First Monthly

May 2023


Mrs. McCarthy always smiled — she was so excited to be with us and help us understand how science and nature coincide. Her excitement about the subject made us equally, if not more, excited than she was! But on top of that, she was just a genuinely nice person. No matter what her students were going through, she was always there to listen and offer guidance. You could tell she truly cared about us and the impact she would have on our lives. I hope she knows how much she inspired me.

When I look back at the people who’ve impacted my life the most and inspired me to become a veterinarian, several people come to mind: my grandfathers, uncles, and my sixth-grade science teacher, Mrs. McCarthy. As mentioned in previous newsletters, my grandfathers and uncles were either veterinarians or managed farms. I grew up watching them work and improve their craft daily, inspiring me to take a similar career path. However, I’ve never spoken about Mrs. McCarthy. PIVOTAL ROLE IN OUR LIVES Inside and Outside the Classroom

While my family helped me find a passion for science, Mrs. McCarthy’s class also played a pivotal role. Her class taught me I could make a difference in people’s lives, which has always stayed with me. When I’m with patients, I emulate Mrs. McCarthy’s persona. I always greet guests with a smile and put my best foot forward. I want you to feel comfortable when you visit Petersen Pet Hospital, and the best way to do that is by showing you I care. If it weren’t for Mrs. McCarthy, I wouldn’t be who I am today.

Some people may not remember their time in junior high school. But with a teacher like Mrs. McCarthy, it is hard to forget! Sometimes, I can still imagine what her classroom looked like — it wasn’t your “normal” kind of classroom. Although some teachers have a few posters and decorations on their walls, Mrs. McCarthy went all out. As soon as we walked into her classroom, dozens of plants greeted us, all scattered around. You would think she had a greenhouse considering how many she had! But she also displayed various science posters of the solar system and animal and human anatomy. You couldn’t see any of the walls in the classroom — she had covered everything in educational posters and fun things to look at. But that’s not all. She also had fish aquariums and hermit crabs we would learn about and care for.

On paper, a teacher’s role is to teach children problem-solving skills and critical thinking to prepare them for the future. But in actuality, teachers do so much more than that! Because most of our childhood occurs within the walls of a classroom, our teachers can impact how we think and socialize, influencing our career choices. Additionally, school can be a difficult time for some students. But with the right teachers, students can find a comfortable place to be themselves. I wanted to thank all our amazing teachers who genuinely want to make a difference in children’s lives. I see your hard work and dedication and have benefited from it. Thank you for everything you do.

You could tell how passionate Mrs. McCarthy was about her job. She wanted to create an environment that encouraged learning, and she did exactly that! I remember how excited my peers and I were when we entered her class — we always had something new to look at and learn about. But her character and how loving she was toward her students also played a vital role.


Border Collie Corner

Can Mental Health Affect Your Pets?

Solensia Helped This Cat’s Osteoarthritis Richard Parker is a very handsome 15-year-old Bengal cat presented to Dr. Knutson and her team in February for his senior exam. His owner mentioned that he had been slowing down and seemed sore when climbing stairs. Dr. Knutson recommended Solensia to help with Richard Parker’s chronic arthritis pain. Solensia is a new product that has been briefly mentioned in previous newsletters. It is the first and only FDA-approved product to control pain associated with osteoarthritis in cats. It’s an injection given monthly at the clinic that works like your cat’s naturally-made antibodies to reduce pain. Most cats show improvement within a couple of weeks, but it takes up to two doses to have full effect. Cats are good at hiding pain, and it’s easy to miss the subtle signs of discomfort due to arthritis. These signs include being hesitant to jump up or down (perform a little wiggle beforehand), bunny hopping or leading with one paw when going upstairs, reaching before jumping down, or simply not being as playful. The website has some helpful animations on identifying signs of pain and additional information on Solensia. While Richard Parker could still jump up and down off the counters, his owner was astute and recognized the more understated signs of pain. Dr. Knutson checked how Richard Parker was doing two weeks after his Solensia injection. It was reported that “it worked too well! He’s now jumping up high on things. He has had a limp for five years, and now he’s doing great!” With Richard Parker being 15, he also hadn’t been playing with his toys as much in the past year or two. Now he’s back to bringing toys to his owner. Dr. Knutson was overjoyed to hear how well Solensia worked for Richard Parker. All the doctors at Petersen Pet Hospital are eager to utilize Solensia to keep our feline friends comfortable and enhance their quality of life. Richard Parker on the Prowl

Hello, newsletter friends! It’s your favorite border collie, Sam, and today we will discuss how mental health can affect your furry friends. I know what you’re thinking: “Sam, can our pets really endure mental health issues just like humans?”Why, yes, we can! Did you know we can experience depression, anxiety, boredom, and other mental issues? One of the biggest differences between animals and humans is that we can’t necessarily vocalize our discomforts and concerns. Because my other four-legged friends and I can’t tell you what’s wrong, we tend to show our discomfort through our actions and behaviors. How can you tell if your pet is facing mental health issues? The main thing canines and felines face is boredom — especially in the winter. We want to be outside, digging holes and watching the birds and Hairball Control Cat Treats

Inspired by


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insects fly past us. We can also experience mental health issues like anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder because we just want to be outside. The tell-tale signs to look out for in dogs are overgrooming, destructive behavior, hiding, trembling, trying to escape, excessive barking, sudden changes in routine, and urinating in the house. For my felines, look out for repetitive meowing, not using their litter box, pacing, restlessness, attacking

your ankles as you walk by, excessive grooming, and drastic changes in routine. What can pet owners do to help improve their pet’s mental health? The most common mental issue we face is boredom — we must be stimulated to function properly. Therefore, carve out time each day, for at least 30 minutes, to play

Pirates, that’s right, pirates stopped America from changing to the metric system. While they can’t take all the blame, they steal a good chunk of it. There was a specific time in history when America did consider taking up the metric system. But pirates intercepted the standards, and America has refused to change its measuring system ever since. Way back when America was still a new country, there was no regulated measuring system throughout the states. Each territory was using some bizarre system that stayed only within state lines. For example, people were using Roman measurements, Dutch systems, and British systems dating back to King Henry VII. In 1789, Thomas Jefferson decided that some order needed to be in place. A lover of all things French, Jefferson admired the metric system’s logic and principle. He asked the French to help the U.S. transition to the metric system, and they were kind enough to send scientist Joseph Dombey. Dombey boarded a ship and set sail for America with two items pivotal to our measuring system change. The first gadget was a copper cylinder 3 inches in height and width, weighing precisely 1 kilogram. The second was another copper object, but this time a rod estimated to be a meter in length. These simple trinkets would have eased us into the metric system. Except, we never received them. In fact, Dombey never set foot in America. Unfortunately, storm winds blew his ship off course and into the pirate-filled Caribbean. The pirates hijacked his boat and held him captive, hoping to use him for ransom. In a tragic turn of events, Dombey died in that pirate prison before any ransom money could be sent. The pirates then auctioned off everything Dombey had on his boat, metric measuring tools included. So, you can thank the pirates for all the painstaking work we have to go through when using metric-based recipes. Why Americans never swapped systems after 1789 is still a mystery! Pirates Stole Our Metric System Why America Never Changed to Kilos and Grams

with us. You can throw a ball or frisbee outside, take us on walks, buy toys that imitate prey, or purchase meal stimulation mats or toys for us to move around to get the treats out of them. I don’t know about my cat friends, but canines love to learn new tricks and commands, as long as we get a treat at the end. At the end of the day, all we want to do is be with you. Therefore, engaging with us is the best way to help improve your four-legged family members’ mental health. In honor of May being Mental Health Awareness Month, be sure to check in on your furry friends as you focus on your mental health, too. Who knows, maybe we can help each other out and boost each other’s serotonin levels.

If your feline regularly coughs up hairballs, these homemade treats may be the perfect thing to help your cat’s digestive tract.


1 1/4 cups brown rice flour 1/3 cup canned pumpkin

• • •

3 tbsp olive oil 2 tbsp water

• • •

1 egg

1 tbsp catnip (optional)

3 tbsp flaxseed, ground

DIRECTIONS 1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Place parchment paper on a baking sheet. 2. In a medium bowl, mix together all of the ingredients. 3. Once evenly mixed, place the dough in plastic wrap for 5 minutes. 4. On parchment paper, roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut the dough into narrow strips, and place strips onto a baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes. 5. Remove from oven, then use a spatula to break treats into bite- size pieces. Bake for 10–15 more minutes. 6. Once treats are cool, place them in an airtight container or serve to your feline friends.



1031 Kacena Road Hiawatha, IA 52233 319-743-0554

Inside This Issue

Mon–Fri: 8 a.m.–6 p.m. (Closed Fridays from 12:30–2:10 p.m. for team meetings) Sat: 8 a.m.–12 p.m. Sun: Closed


Everything Changed When I Entered 6th Grade



BLACK Big Richard Gets Moving Again! Border Collie Corner: Improve Your Pet’s Mental Health 50% BLACK



Hairball Control Cat Treats The Mysteriously Missing Metric System



Potbellied Pig Terrifies Burglars






On the night of New Year’s Eve in 2014, a group of burglars experienced the fright of a lifetime. Expecting to rob a quiet home in Derby, England, the intruders instead came face to snout with Ludwig, a 240-pound potbellied pig. Abandoning all thoughts of crime once they spotted the pig, the burglars instantly fled the scene and ran for their lives.

But the owners want to ensure people understand that Ludwig would never hurt anyone. Some fabricated web stories made Ludwig sound more dangerous than he is, so Maughan spoke to the Toronto Star to dispute any defamations against Ludwig’s kindness.


“He’s being painted as a vicious creature when he’s actually quite a sweet animal,” he explained. “He didn’t exactly bare his tusks and charge, I don’t think. I think he got absolutely, ‘Arrgh,’ and they just ran for it.” In fact, Maughan detailed that after a two-month separation during their move to England, the pig shed tears during their reunion. Adorable and affectionate, Ludwig would have probably become friends with the intruders in no time.

The “hero ham” had already become a popular figure in his town and was well-loved

for his gentle demeanor. In fact, Michael Maughan, Ludwig’s owner, is confident that Ludwig wouldn’t have harmed the intruders, even if he does look quite intimidating. Local officers believe the robbers must have heard Ludwig’s Rottweiler-like “growl” and immediately hit the road, leaving the door wide open behind them.

Even if his “bark” is worse than his bite, Ludwig succeeded in keeping his owners safe while also protecting their home. This 240-pound potbellied pig continues to enjoy his comfortable home in Derby and is considered a town hero. Anyone looking for a guard dog may want to consider a hefty hog instead!

The story of this heroic potbellied pig became a sensation throughout Europe. Countless fans have applauded the Canadian-born hog for his loyalty to his owners.

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