Bow Wow Wow Yippee Yo Turkey Yah!

Thanksgiving is less than a week away! While you plan your recipes and family dinners, your dogs are also planning on their own feast. They’re preparing for table scraps, anything children drop, and whatever you offer up because they know how to penetrate your soul with their big beautiful eyes. While most foods from your plate are safe for your pets, keep in mind the volume of what you allow them to eat. Overeating may be acceptable, and pretty much expected, for us on holidays but it can be harmful for our pets.

There is nothing wrong with sharing your Thanksgiving meals with your fur-babies, just be mindful about how much and what you are serving. First and foremost, always make sure everything you offer to your pets is not toxic to them (don’t forget about seasonings!). The Humane Society and ASPCA offer wonderful articles and resources with lists of foods that you should avoid and foods that are safe for dogs.

Overeating can cause digestive upsets, including vomiting, diarrhea, bloat, and lethargy. To avoid overfeeding your dog, make sure you reduce the amount of their usual food to balance the total volume for the day. When the body is overloaded with food, it has to work harder than normal to break down and digest it all, especially when those foods are high in sugar or fat. The stomach initiates the digestion process. From there, the spleen and pancreas break down the food further using natural enzymes. The pancreas, in particular, can become overwhelmed if met with a higher fat content than usual. This can cause acute pancreatitis. Signs of pancreatitis include a swollen and painful abdomen, vomiting, lack of appetite, and diarrhea. If your dogs experience these symptoms, only offer water to allow their bodies to rest, and contact your veterinarian.

Here are some tips to help make this holiday season is enjoyable for you and your dogs:

  • Double check all ingredients in the food you offer your dog.
  • Cross reference those ingredients with lists of safe foods.
  • Reduce the amount of your dog’s regular food to compensate for holiday foods.
  • Spread out their holiday meals to keep from overwhelming their digestion.
  • Fresh sweet potatoes and pumpkin are great for upset tummies! Just don’t confuse that with pie filling.
  • If you offer turkey to your dog, make sure it is cooked thoroughly (given the recent Salmonella            reports and recalls) and remove the skin. Turkey skin is high in fat!
  • The light meat is lower in fat.
  • Turkey gizzards are full of nutrients beneficial to dogs!
  • Never allow our dog to chew cooked bones, they splinter and can be very dangerous.
  • Broth is a GREAT addition to your dog’s meal, minus the seasonings.

Have a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving!

Resources for safe and toxic foods for dogs:

You Asked and We Listened

You Asked and We Listened!

At 5Strands® Affordable Testing, our mission is to empower families with a voice about their own health care and that of their pets. We strive to fill the void of consumer driven needs with our affordable testing. We are continually listening to you, our customers, to ensure that we are meeting your needs. In response to recent feedback, we have added new ways to purchase testing for adults and children to make it more affordable!

While our “Deluxe Test,” which includes the most items tested, is the best value for the cost, we have divided it up so that you can now choose only the parts that your family needs. We are proud to introduce individualized test kits for:

  1. Food Intolerances
  2. Environmental Intolerances
  3. Metals and Minerals
  4. Nutritional Deficiencies

In celebration of this new product announcement, we have a special surprise for our blog readers! Enjoy $10 OFF any of these new individualized test kits! (Use Code: NEW10-valid through December 1, 2018.)

The individual kits and prices are listed below:

Food Intolerance Test ($72) – 550 Items Tested

Proteins (Bacon, Beef, Chicken, Duck, Shrimp, Shellfish, Egg Yolk/White, whitefish, Salmon, etc.)

Grains (Gluten, Barley, Maize, Flour,etc.)

Dairy (Milk Cow, Milk Goat, Cream Cheese, etc.)

Fruits (Apples, Banana, Pineapple Juice, Strawberries, Kiwis, etc.)

Vegetables (Artichoke, Carrot, Tomato, Mushrooms,

Nuts (Almond, Cashew, Hazelnuts, Peanuts, etc.)

Alcohol (Beer, Red/White Wine, Tequila, etc.)

Environmental Intolerance Test ($50) – 100 Items Tested

Grass (Bermuda, Kentucky Bluegrass, Fescue, etc.)

Tree (Beech, Cherry, Elm, Cedar, Pine, etc.)

Animals (Bee, Canaries, Cats, Dogs, Goats, Horses, etc.)

Fabric (Cotton, Leather, Nylon, Rubber, Wool, etc.)

Flowers (Dahlia, Lilac, Tobacco, Tulip, etc.)

Metals & Minerals Test ($46) – 50 Items Tested

Aluminum, Arsenic, Barium, Beryllium, Boron, Bromine, Cadmium, Carbon, Chromium, Copper, Iron, Lead, Lithium, Magnesium, Manganese, Mercury, Platinum, Radium, Scandium, Selenium, Silver, Thallium, Tin, Titanium, Zinc,

Nutritional Deficiency Test ($44) – 115 Items Tested

Amino Acids (Arginine, Asparagine, Cystine, Glutamic, Glycine, Histidine, Methlonine, Ornithine, Taurine, etc)

Ionic Minerals ( Aluminum, Bromine, Cerium, Cesium, Landthanum, Nickel, Rubidium, Thulium, etc)

Vitamins (A, B1, B11, B12, B13, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, C, D2, D3, E, K1, K2)

Omega (3, 6, 9)

Re-Testing Is Now Much More Affordable!

The new individualized testing options enable you to tailor your re-testing process to the area(s) that you feel are most important for follow-up.

As the body is constantly changing, intolerances may be changing as well. A negative result today may not necessarily mean that a food or substance will not create issues in your body in the future. And, what may be a trigger today may become normalized. Intolerances can be better understood and overcome through several different processes including elimination, detoxification, improving your gut health, improving your overall health, reintroduction, etc. Since no two people respond to intolerances or treatments in the same way, periodic re-testing can help keep you on track during your healing process. Re-testing may be beneficial after 90 days. Ask your health professional to guide you.

5Strands® Affordable Testing would like to say thank you for your continued support!

Be sure to stay tuned into our blog and social media for notifications on exclusive offers and discounts.

Pet Safety Tips this Halloween

Pet Safety Tips this Halloween

Happy Halloween!

Frightening family fun is just around the corner!

Although Halloween is filled with light-hearted tricks and treats, it’s important to keep safety in mind for every member of the family—including your pets. Halloween can pose a number of potential safety hazards for pets, who tend to experience high levels of stress due to the hustle and bustle of the holiday. Here are a few tips to keep you and your four-legged family members safe and happy this Halloween:

Costumes—while cute, can be dangerous for pets. Costume contests are popular around Halloween, and it’s tempting to want to dress up your four-legged friend in their own costume. After all, who can resist dressing up a pet in a cute witch’s cape or antlers? But if you do choose to dress your pet up in costume, make sure they can move in it comfortably and most importantly, safely. Avoid costumes that require tying anything around your pet’s neck that can choke them, or costumes that hang to the ground that they may stumble over. Let your pet be the judge. If they struggle and are uncomfortable, then maybe it’s best to let them stay dressed as a Corgi rather than a ghost!

 Keep your pet away from harmful Halloween candy and food. Before you give in to your pet’s pleading eyes and feed them that Halloween candy bar, be aware of the harmful consequences of feeding human food to any animal. Chocolate—especially baking chocolate—can be deadly to a dog, so keep all such goodies well out of reach.

Additionally, small amounts of corn and pumpkin can be fed safely to many pets, ingesting uncooked, potentially moldy Halloween pumpkins or corn displays can cause big problems. Gastrointestinal upset is a possibility whenever pets eat something they aren’t used to, and intestinal blockage can occur if large pieces are swallowed. Coates adds that “some types of mold produce mycotoxins that can cause neurologic problems in dogs and cats.” So, keep the pumpkins and corn stalks away from your pets. And speaking of pumpkins…

To reduce temptation, feed your pet before any guests arrive so they will be less likely to beg and steal food. Tell your guests of any house rules regarding your pet, such as not feeding them scraps from the table.

Keep your home a safe space for your pet. Animals can get stressed with the hustle and bustle of guests and trick-or- treaters. It’s best to keep your pets indoors and provide them with a safe, quiet, escape-proof room where they can be removed from the energy and excitement of the holiday. Remember to provide plenty of food and water, and let your pet catch up on some Zs! As trick-or-treaters come to your door, there will be many opportunities for your pets to slip out unnoticed. Make sure that your pet always wears current identification tags, consider having your pets microchipped if you haven’t already—and watch the door!

Halloween, and all the spooky fun that accompanies the holiday, is best enjoyed when the entire family is safe and happy. Follow these tips, and your pet will have just as much fun as you and your kids this Halloween!