Veterinarian Column: #Stay Home Spending time at home with your pet [Care, care, and play that you can do at home]

by Alice's Dog & Catスタッフ

A state of emergency has been declared nationwide, and I think people are refraining from going out and spending more time at home with their pets. Why not enjoy spending time with your pet at home, taking care of it, playing with it, etc.

■ Maintenance/care

Care such as ear cleaning and brushing can help you manage your pet's health and get rid of physical contact. Grooming salons may be subject to closure requests, so if your usual salon is closed and you are unable to get your hair trimmed, take this opportunity to try taking care of yourself at home.

・Ear cleaning

Alice's Dog & Cat Veterinarian Column Maintenance Ear Cleaning

Alice's Dog & Cat Veterinarian Column Maintenance Ear Cleaning

Look inside your ears and check if there is any abnormal amount of earwax. Doesn't it smell strange? Check to see if the skin on the ears is red or sore. When there is an abnormality, it means that the pet has otitis externa, so the pet does not like having its ears touched.

For cleaning, use a special ear cleaner and absorbent cotton. If there are no abnormalities in the ears, either drop the cleaner directly onto the ears, massage the ears, and wipe the ears with absorbent cotton, or moisten the absorbent cotton with cleaner and wipe away any dirt. Avoid using cotton swabs for at-home care, as they can push dirt deeper into the ear.

·Nail clippers

Alice's Dog & Cat Veterinarian Column Maintenance/Care Nail Clippers

For children who are not used to cutting their nails, it may be difficult to cut them at home. It is important to get your dog used to having his toes and nails touched on a regular basis. Don't try to cut all your nails at once, until you get used to it, don't push yourself too hard, and if you can cut one or two places then do it next time.

Cats can be cut with human nail clippers, but dogs need special nail clippers. Blood vessels and nerves run through the nails of dogs and cats. For children with white nails, the pink veins will be visible, so cut just before that. For children with black nails, you can't see the blood vessels, so cut them little by little. It can be a little longer, so be careful not to make mistakes and feel bad. It's a good idea to reward your dog for letting him cut his hair and make him understand that it can be a good thing.

・Anal gland expression

Alice's Dog & Cat Veterinarian Column Care Anal gland expression

Dogs and cats have sacs in their anus that collect secretions called anal glands. Normally, secretions are expelled from this pouch when you poop or when you are excited, but if the secretions are not drained properly, too much secretion accumulates and causes itching, and if it gets worse, the pouch becomes inflamed and bursts. It is necessary to express the anal glands regularly.

If you compare the anus to the center of the hands of a clock, the anal glands have sacs at the 4 o'clock and 8 o'clock positions. Lightly lift the tail with one hand, and with the other hand pinch the two anal glands with your thumb and forefinger, and imagine squeezing them toward the anus. It's very smelly when it splatters, so it's best to cover your anus with a tissue or do it in the bathroom when shampooing.


Cats generally don't need shampoo. Dogs need to be shampooed regularly. For children with chronic illnesses such as heart disease, shampooing can be a burden, so don't overdo it and use dry shampoo to remove dirt.

Use shampoo made specifically for dogs. Thoroughly wet your entire body with lukewarm water and lather up the shampoo. Touch your whole body and check for any growths such as skin inflammation or tumors. Once the entire product is foamy, rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water. Then dry it with a towel or hairdryer. Children with sensitive skin should be careful not to overheat their skin with the hair dryer.


The frequency of brushing depends on the quality and length of the hair, but to keep it healthy it should be daily to 2-3 times a week. Increase frequency during shedding season. Is there dandruff? Is there any inflammation on the skin? Are there fleas or ticks? Please check as you go.

■ Playing at home

Alice's Dog & Cat Veterinarian Column Playing at Home

Walking is not prohibited, but to reduce the risk of infection, avoid going to parks and dog parks where people and dogs gather, and choose a walking course that avoids crowds. Also, be sure to thoroughly wash your hands, gargle, and disinfect your dog's fur and the soles of its feet after returning home. Cats stay at home without being allowed outside.

If your dog has too much energy due to shorter walks, try playing with him at home.

・Before playing, check to see if there are any dangerous areas in the room.

  • Secure a large space if possible. Try rearranging your furniture to create a space where you can run around. Cats like to exercise up and down, so a cat tower is a good idea.
  • Place a mat or carpet on the floor to prevent your pet from slipping.
  • Prepare toys. Choose toys that are sold for pets, are large enough that they cannot be swallowed, and are durable enough that they cannot be easily chewed off.

- A game where you throw things and have them fetch it. It also relieves lack of exercise.

Alice's Dog & Cat Veterinarian Column Playing at home: Pulling

・Pulling. Choose items that can't be swallowed, won't touch your dog's teeth, and won't tear into pieces easily.

- A game where you hide and search for toys and food.

Alice's Dog & Cat Veterinarian Column: Playing at home: Food

・Play with educational toys. You can use your head and body to play with the ball, which releases food when you roll it.

It's easy to feel gloomy with the news about the new coronavirus, but consider that you have more precious time to spend with your pet by refraining from going out, and enjoy spending time with your pet by providing care and play that you couldn't normally do.