Animal Hut Buzz

This week I would like to relay an experience I have had with my oldest Bichon. K.C. is 14 years old and has always been pretty healthy, until last year when she experienced her first bout of vestibular disease. For those of you who are not familiar with vestibular disease here is a short description from the Whole Dog Journal:

“A dog's balance is provided by a network of interactive anatomical structures that permit the dog to perceive his orientation in space and inform his extremities as to how to move appropriately. The vestibular apparatus encompasses the labyrinth of the inner ear along with the cochlea of the auditory system. Hair cells deep inside the ear function as sensors, detecting the position of the dogs head. They also transmit this information to the balance systems control center, the cerebellum and brain stem, which sends messages to the muscles in the body to maintain the dogs posture and equilibrium.

Problems in the vestibular system typically reveal themselves suddenly, as the dog abruptly experiences problems with his balance, but dogs may display varying degrees of loss of equilibrium and balance. Other signs include tilting of the head, uncoordinated muscle movements on one side of the body, falling, rolling, deviation of one eye in a given head position, circling, disorientation, and nystagmus (an involuntary eye movement where the eyes rapidly move back and forth or rotate, commonly described as flickering). Nausea (including vomiting) may occur, especially within the first day of onset of other symptoms, and dogs frequently decline to eat for the first day or more.”

K.C. recovered fairly well after her first bout, but her second, not as well! She was still staggering a bit and just a bit unsteady on her feet for quite a while. Even at her age I had never considered giving her a hip and joint supplement as I do with my boys who have had ligament issues, she never appeared to need it. Just on a whim I decided to give her a try on the In Clover Connectin which I give my boys, and, of course, sell at Animal Hut. It has been proven to improve mobility in 15 days! And I have to say, it has done exactly that for K.C. She is a lot more stable on steps and running around the yard! To learn more about Connectin and the other health supplements offered by In Clover check out their website at Be sure to let me know if you are interested in any of their products! I know there are not a lot of dogs out there with vestibular disease, but please keep this in mind in case your pooch begins experiencing it, or if you know of someone’s pup with the problem, please pass this info along.

Since I have mentioned hip and joint supplements here is a nice article from Merrick Pet Care describing arthritis in our pets and how important these supplements can be:

Here is a short quiz on dog facts from the Encyclopedia Brittanica! Can you get all the answers?

Don’t forget to join us for our Yappy Hour on Tuesdays through Fridays from 1:00 pm until 3:00 pm for 25% off our bulk dog treats!

Beginning Tuesday, March 3rd Animal Hut will be having an End of the Season Sale! All sweaters, coats, jackets and boots will be 25% off for all of March!


The Bichon Frise Club will be hosting another of their educational presentations at the Penn Hills Library on Stotler Rd. On Sunday, March 22nd in Meeting Room B at 1:30 pm. Mr. Steve Stoehr, PA State Dog Warden, will be giving the presentation! If you have any questions about dog laws or who to call if you have problems with pets, not even your own, be sure to attend! Seating is limited, so please call 412-795-6556 to make reservations!

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