Table of Contents

Morris Foundation for Animals Golden Retriever Research
University Animal Hospital Nominated for Small Business of the Year in Tempe!
Tempe Chamber of Commerce Finalist Award University Animal Hospital
University Animal Hospital Celebrating 50 Years of Accreditation 

Exercising Your Pet


Just like it is important for people to get the correct amount of exercise everyday, it’s important for your dog to get exercise too. Although humans and dogs differ greatly, the benefits of exercise are the same and that is why it is crucial to incorporate exercise into your dog’s daily routine.  Each dog is different and therefore needs different things when it comes to exercise, but here are a few of our tips to keep your dog as healthy as possible.

Many vets recommend a minimum of 30 minutes of vigorous exercise a day for all size and breeds of dogs. Along with this, another 1-2 hours is recommended, depending on the type of dog. Again, all of this is just recommendations and estimates. To get a good number for your specific dog, you should consult your vet and figure out the best fitness plan.

Another important part of a dog’s health that we often overlook is their mental health and whether or not they are being stimulated mentally. Boredom in dogs can also be a result of lack of exercise which is why this is an important area to think about. A few signs that your dog may need more mental stimulation are pacing, barking, chasing its tail, and oversleeping.

There are so many great ways to help your dog get more exercise, and it could even be a great way for you to incorporate more exercise into your daily routine! We recently shared our favorite places in Tempe to walk your dog, which is a great starting point. Like we mentioned before, always consult your vet before making any drastic changes to your pets diet or exercise routine. We are always here to help online or over the phone 480.968.9275

Walk In The Park Day

With National Walk in the Park Day on Thursday, March 30 and the weather still being somewhat bearable, we thought we would share our three favorite spots to take your dogs out for a walk and enjoy the Arizona Scenery! Always remember when walking your dog to keep them on a leash, bring bags and lots of extra water for you and your pup, as the weather heats up.

First up on the list is Papago Park. This is more of a hike, but it comes with some great AZ scenery along the way and great views at the top. Located in Tempe just north of the 202, it is relatively close to University Animal Hospital and walking distance from the Mill Ave. district of Tempe.

Another great place to take your dog that is central to Scottsdale, Tempe and Phoenix is Tempe Town Lake. There are clear walking paths, nice grassy areas and even a spot where your pup can get in the water if you allow them to.

Our third recommendation for a great place to walk your dog is along the Scottsdale greenbelt that stretches from Tempe Town Lake all the way to Shea Blvd. There are plenty of attractions and stops on the way as well as a nice walking/biking path to follow the entire way along.

Hopefully you’ve gotten some good ideas of where you can take your pup for a nice walk! Do you have other places that you love to walk? Let us know where they are, as we are always looking for new places to suggest to our patients!
Happy Walking and as always if you have any questions or concerns about your pets, give us a call, visit our website or bring them in for a visit.

Spring Cleaning for your Dog

It’s almost spring! The weather is finally warming up, which means it’s time to shed winter’s layers to start fresh on the 20th of March. Every year, most of us take part in spring cleaning. Maybe you start in the living room, maybe it’s the kitchen, but do you remember your dog’s area? Sure, they may not know what spring cleaning is, but surely they’ll appreciate a fresh start. Here are the best ways to revamp your dog’s space this Spring!

Basic Cleaning

The best way to start is by simply cleaning the areas where your dog spends most of their time. Think about where their bed is, or where they may sleep, while you’re out of the house. If you’re starting with disinfecting, make sure you avoid cleaners without Phenols, Isopropyl alcohol, Formaldehyde, Phthalates, Bleach, and Perchloroethylene. Your favorite pet store will have products that are safe for your pets. Clean up any hair around their areas, and wash all bedding thoroughly .


Out with the old, In with the new

For a lot of people, the spring means a fresh start. We also think it’s the perfect time to also get your dog in on the action. While you might buy new clothes to welcome the Arizona weather, what about something NEW for your furry friend? If cleaning your dog’s bedding won’t bring it back to life, a new bed could be in their future. Find one that features a cool temperature for the warmer days ahead. A new toy may also be nice for the Spring, to get them ready for the active days ahead.

Here at UAH, we’re getting ready for spring cleaning early, before the official first day of spring on March 20th. Get your dog involved on the fun this year, they’re sure to enjoy this new tradition. If you have any questions about cleaning your dog’s space you can call us at 480-968-9275.


Cat Boarding

With Spring Break right around the corner and Summer approaching faster than we think, it’s time to start thinking about where your pets will stay when you are off having fun and traveling. Often times we automatically think about who will take care of the dog when we leave home, but it is also important to think of the cat. Yes, cats are far more independent and don’t need as much supervision, but if you are leaving for an extended period of time, you should really look into boarding your kitty as well.


Here at University Animal Hospital, we are proud to be a cat-friendly practice and also have cat boarding as an option. We have an entirely separate room for cats and smaller creatures like rabbits and pocket pets. It can sometimes be a stressful situation for your pets to be boarded, but with separate areas, they are able to feel more comfortable.


When you board your cat at UAH, they have the option of a window or non-window condo. We will also provide them with food, water, bowls, bedding and litter boxes. If your kitty likes any special kind of food or treats or needs to take any special medication, you are more than welcome to bring them along and let us know.


You can board your pets for any duration of time, and we also offer special discounts for longer periods of time. (i.e 7-13 days get 10% off, 14-20 days get 15% off and 21 or more days get 20% off). Visit our website to learn more about the boarding and vaccination requirements. You can make your reservations online or call at 480-968-9275. If you are a first time client, you can also receive 10% off!
We know it’s nerve wracking to leave your pets when you go on vacation, so we do our best to make sure they are comfortable and happy while you are away!  

Potential Dental Problems

Many people wonder why dogs and cats need to get their teeth cleaned and often think it is somewhat unnecessary. But just like humans, regular check-ups are important to prevent many different diseases and problems from occurring. Keep reading to find out more about these risks.

Did you know adult dogs have 42 teeth? In order for all of these adult teeth to be healthy, and grow in properly, all of the baby teeth need to be lost or removed. If they aren’t, these baby teeth can cause severe irritation, gum disease and tartar buildup.

Another issue that can arise if your pet doesn’t have their teeth cleaned regularly is bad breath, also known as halitosis. Bad breath is common to a certain extent, but if it becomes something that is too overwhelming to handle, it could be a sign that your dog or cat is developing dental disease. One of the problems that can come from bad breath is gingivitis, which is irritation, inflammation and bleeding of the gums. Often times, if caught early on, gingivitis can be reversed.


Yet another level of dental disease that comes from the previous two mentioned is periodontitis. This is what happens when gingivitis goes untreated, and just becomes worse and worse, causing even more gum irritation and tarter build up that spreads into the bones and delicate tissues.


If a dog’s mouth is not kept clean, tumors can also form. Something that you might think is a tumor (but often isn’t) is something called salivary mucocele, which is a large fluid filled sack inside the dog’s mouth or around its neck. It is caused by inflammation or damage to the salivary glands.

Your pets are often very good at hiding pain, so you may not even know that there is a problem until it is serious. Here at University Animal Hospital, we think your pet’s oral health is just as important as the rest of their health. Make an appointment on our website or call 480-968-9275 and bring your pet in for a teeth cleaning!

Dental Month!

February is Dental Month here at UAH and we take pride in your pets oral health. Stop in during the month of February to get 20% off all dental treatments.

Playing With Your Dog When Short on Time

Every dog’s favorite time of the day is playtime! We love it too, but sometimes we are short on time and can’t give them enough exercise or play time. It’s still important to get them moving. Without physical activity, dogs can become bored and stressed out. It’s time to make the most of your day with your dog!

Plan Your Playtime

If you’re someone who has to stay organized, planning out your week could keep daily exercise on track. For instance, if you know you’ll be busy with work one night, plan to wake up early and get your dog moving. Take them for an early morning walk, or plan to make it home a little earlier to get them outside for play time.

Think Outside the Box

If you go to the same place for walks, or a game of fetch, you and your dog are probably growing bored of it! Research new paths, or parks that you can easily get to. This will be stimulating for both of you, as well as an opportunity to find a new favorite spot.

Make it FUN

Going on a quick walk is great when you’re strapped for time, but when you have more time you should try something new. One of our favorite things to is let your dog walk YOU. Get the leash out and let your dog take you where he wants to go. If your dog could use a challenge when it comes to physical activity, look into agility classes. This involves jumping and quickly completing an obstacle course.

Mental Exercise

A dog’s mind should stay stimulated, just like yours. Try teaching them new tricks every once in awhile. This will keep them sharp and curb boredom. If you need more help training your dog, or questions, read our blog about Dog Training.

Daily exercise is a time for you and your dog to bond. However, it doesn’t have to be a chore! Keep organized and make sure you have time set aside every day for a walk, or a game of fetch. If you have any questions, you can call us at 480-968-9275 or visit our website.

Healthy and Safe Ingredients for Homemade Dog Treats

Homemade treats are a great way to control what goes into your pet’s diet, cater to any unique dietary restrictions, and limit the intake of fat and calories. Homemade pet treats are also healthier alternatives to many commercial brand dog treats, which are often filled with unhealthy additives, preservatives, fillers, and byproducts. Furthermore, your beloved pet will appreciate the variety and fresh flavors.

Many recipes for healthy dog treats contain pantry staples, saving you time on an extra grocery store run. However, before hitting the kitchen, it’s important to understand which foods are beneficial to dogs and which can be toxic.


Foods to Avoid in Homemade Dog Treats

Xylitol: One of the most common ingredients in our sugar-free foods, xylitol is extremely toxic to dogs. When ingested in fairly small amounts, this artificial sweetener can cause low blood sugar, seizures, and liver failure, possibly leading to death. This can’t be stressed enough – avoid all sugar-free foods and artificial sweeteners when making pet treats!

Chocolate: Most pet owners are aware that chocolate is poisonous to dogs. All chocolate, except white, is toxic to dogs, but the recent surge in popularity of potent dark chocolate has increased this risk even more. Toxic doses can lead to abnormal heartbeats, kidney failure, and death. Small dogs are more at risk.

Grapes and Raisins: Ingesting grapes and raisins has fairly recently been found to cause kidney failure in some animals. It doesn’t appear to correlate with the volume ingested, nor are all animals are equally susceptible. However, it’s best to err on the side of caution and avoid grapes and raisins altogether.

Onions: While tasty to dogs, ingesting high levels of onions or onion powder can lead to changes in red blood cells and anemia. Again, it’s best to play it safe and steer clear of onions.


Healthy Ingredients for Homemade Pet Treats

Pumpkin: Pumpkin is full of healthy antioxidants and vitamins C and E. These help with cataracts and heart problems in animals. Pumpkin is also great for weight loss and digestion.

Peanut Butter: Dogs love peanut butter, and this healthy snack is beneficial for them, too. It is full of protein, vitamins B and E, niacin, and heart-healthy fats. Make sure you pick raw, unsalted peanut butter, while avoiding sugar-free, or “light”, peanut butter.

Yogurt: Yogurt is high in calcium and protein. It can also contain active bacteria, which acts as a probiotic and aids in digestion.

Salmon: Full of omega 3 fatty acids, salmon helps ensure your best friend maintains a healthy and shiny coat. It also supports a robust immune system.

Eggs: Eggs are full of protein. They also contain easily digestible selenium and riboflavin, making them a great addition to homemade pet treats.

Oatmeal: Oatmeal is an excellent source of soluble fiber, which is especially beneficial for older dogs with irregular digestion. It is also a great alternative to grain for dogs with certain wheat allergies.

Cinnamon: Cinnamon helps improve circulation and contains anti-inflammatory properties. This helps relieve joint pain due to arthritis. Cinnamon also helps regulate blood sugar and lowers cholesterol levels, which is especially good for diabetic pets.

Parsley: Add parsley or parsley flakes to dog treats to freshen breath. Parsley also contains vitamins A and C. Plus, your dog won’t even know it’s there.

Important tips for keeping your pet safe in the winter

As pet lovers, we all worry about keeping our pets safe during winter. The harsh weather and plummeting temperatures present challenges for people and pets alike. Humans wrap themselves in layers of thermal protection. And while pets often have natural coats to handle foul weather, they can still be vulnerable in many ways. As empathetic people, it’s important that we recognize and act to keep our loving pets healthy and happy during the frigid season. Here are some ways of keeping your pet safe in winter.

Time Limits
When we look at the daily forecast, it shows us the temperature and “feels like” conditions. That lower number refers to the wind chill factor. Although a dog or cat may enjoy a thick winter coat, keep in mind that they too have exposed skin areas such as the nose, ears and mouth. By limiting the amount of time they spend outdoors to do their duty, you’ll keep them much safer from frostbite.

Bundle Up
It may surprise some pet lovers that their furry friend’s winter coat doesn’t assure them long-lasting protection from the elements. Sweaters and pet clothing is a must if your pet will spend any length of time outside during freezing temperatures.

One of the best ways of keeping your pet safe in the winter is to provide them with foot protection. While their paws appear to be padded, the soles of their feet can only endure a limited amount of exposure to extreme temperatures. Another problem that comes with combating snow and ice is the use of rock salts and harmful chemicals. A nice set of paw booties will provide an additional layer of protection from natural and man-made elements.

Food and Diet
Dogs and cats get far less exercise during the winter. They also take so many naps that they seem to be in a state of hibernation. This is a natural mechanism to conserve energy because exposure to cold weather drains their bodies faster. Talk to your veterinarian about ways to adjust winter diets. The goal is to supply them with enough nutrition and calories without them gaining unhealthy weight.

Storms and power outages pose two very real dangers in terms of keeping your pet safe in the winter. Indoor pets can be suddenly confronted with cold temperatures that they are unable to physically handle. Have a contingency plan to keep a space warm and well ventilated in the event you lose power. Heavy snows may also restrict travel and it’s important that you have a reserve supply of pet food on hand. Winter is not the best time to manage pet items on a week to week basis.

Frozen Dinners
Many pet owners get into the habit of putting food and water bowls outdoors. A freeze pop may be fun on a warm summer day, but there’s a reason you heat up frozen TV dinners. Find an indoor area that works for pet feedings during the cold months and don’t wait until the thermostat reaches freezing. If that isn’t logistically feasible for you, invest in heated food and water bowls. Also, be sure that your adorable pet enjoys a steady stream of clean water.

Checking and adjusting antifreeze levels in automobiles is a pre-winter event. Pets can be particularly susceptible to chemicals such as antifreeze. It’s imperative that you keep containers properly sealed and cleanup any spillage. An added protection can be changing to products that use propylene glycol rather than ethylene glycol. The former can be safer, but is still a toxin to animals and humans alike.

These are just a few ways to keep your pet safe in the winter. Be sure to monitor your pet’s demeanor and energy levels. If you see any significant or concerning change, call your veterinarian immediately.

When Should Your Pet See The Vet

Sometimes its hard to know when and why your healthy pet needs to see the vet. We are big believers of prevention and the only way to know that your pet has a clean bill of health is to come in for check ups! We hope to see you and your furry friend soon.