Archive for March, 2009

Flea Season

March 28, 2009

Nova here, on assignment. This week I’ll discuss fleas and some flea treatments.

Flea season is almost upon us here in the Pacific Northwest. Make sure  you get an early start on treatment before you have a problem that can get out of control!  Not to mention the horrible skin problems fleas can cause if your pet has a flea allergy. Who wants their pet to suffer with itchy skin?

The new treatments are quite safe compared with treatments from just fifteen years ago. The most common flea treatment used to be “dipping” your dog with harmful chemicals. Of course, most groomers didn’t actually dip the dog in a vat of stuff.  They usually sponged it onto your pet and let the product sit and dry.  These chemicals could cause anything from burns to nerve damage in the pet … or sometimes even cancer. These products were bad for the groomers as well.  Plus they smelled awful!

The new “spot” treatments, such as Frontline or Advantage, are much safer and last much longer; however, *anything* you use to kill fleas can be harmful if used improperly. Be sure you follow directions exactly and *never* use the wrong size dose on your pet.

There are also newer systemic treatments that you give to your pet in pill form. The Muttley Crew carries one such product named Capstar.

This pill kills all the fleas on your pet within 45 minutes and then is out of their system. It does not, however, keep working after the intial dose. It is *not* residual. So if you have a severe infestation you will need to give your pet a pill every day.

The folks here at The Muttley Crew are awaiting a new flea protection system that has been in use in Europe for several years. It is non-toxic and is completely pesticide free. I’ll keep you informed when it’s available!

Take care and look for my reports on a weekly basis!


The Importance of Grooming Your Pet

March 5, 2009

Hello, Nova here, giving out my weekly advice.  This week it is about grooming your pet.

Grooming your pet is more important than you might  think.  Not only does it make a pet like me look great, but it can uncover underlying health issues.  During the grooming process, a good groomer will assess a pet’s overall condition.  They check for bumps or lumps, or check to see if a known lump is growing.  It’s amazing the things that owners don’t notice … not that they don’t touch their dog, but they usually don’t pet every inch of their pet at the same time!

A groomer will notice if a skin condition is apparent and if so, can advise the owner about how to help.  Sometimes it’s a food allergy that causes the problem. Sometimes it’s allergies to mold or pollen that make a pet itchy.

A groomer may suggest a new food and/or give the pet a medicated bath to help relieve the itchiness.

Dogs (and cats) have scent glands located on either side of their rectum.  Small dogs need to have their anal glands expressed.  Large dogs can usually take care of it themselves.  An experienced groomer or bather should be able to take care of this without too much trouble.  The groomer will not force the glands to express, as this could seriously injure the pet. If the groomer feels that they cannot do it safely, they will suggest that the owner take the pet to their vet.

Next we’ll talk nails. Toenails to be exact.  If a pet’s nails get too long it can cause the pet’s toes to bend in an unnatural way.   This can cause arthritis in the toes and feet, making it painful for the pet to walk.  Long nails can also cause dogs–especially older dogs–to slip on slick floors.  Obviously, your pet can get hurt this way.  Torn ACLs, hip problems, and shoulder problems are just a few of the things that can happen.

The groomers will also check the pet’s ears for infection. Infections can happen if the ears get too much moisture and/or the pet eats a diet too high in simple sugars. This type of infection is usually caused by yeast. A yeast infection is apparent by a strong odor and a brown tinge to the inner ear hair. The other thing a groomer will check the ears for is mites. This presents as an almost black goo inside the ear canal. A pet  can also get a bacterial infection of the ear.  This will require antibiotics to cure . Symptoms of this are swelling of the ear canal and the ear flap . There is usually a foul-smelling, yellowish drainage.  All of these infections need to be treated by a veterinarian.

The groomer will “pluck” out any excess hair from the ear canal if there is no evidence of infection. This will help keep the inner ear dry and infection free.

Lastly, pets really enjoy feeling clean. They may not like the bath itself, but if you’ve ever seen a freshly bathed dog, you can tell by the way they act that they feel great!

Hello world!

March 1, 2009

We are The Muttley Crew:  Portland’s Finest Dog Grooming and Doggy Daycare.  We are located at 806 NW Murray, Portland, Oregon 97229

Our Phone numbers are: 503-626-8212 or 1-866-muttley and our Website is

Our day care is very different than most.  We take in a very limited number of dogs on any given day.

Our daycare sees the same pets on a regular schedule. The dogs develop deep bonds with each other and often pick out one or two buddies to team up with.  David, who supervises the daycare area, is every dog’s best friend. They just love the guy!

We encourage our clients to bring their pets in on a set schedule.  Dogs thrive on consistency . They love to see the same friends on a regular basis. It’s not that they can’t develop new friendships — they certainly do.  But they also really like to see that one special friend.

Our grooming salon is second to none.  Our three groomers have a combined 60 years of experience.  Two of our groomers are CMGs (Certified Master Groomers).  We all can groom ANY breed to breed standards, but each of us has a specialty!

Our retail area is currently in expansion.  We sell only 5- and 6-star rated foods.  Most are grain-free, free range foods made from human grade products.  We do not sell any food products from China.  Most of our treats are also grain free and made from free range meats with no rendered products.

We are committed to making this a safe, healthy  fun place for your pet. We encourage you to stop in for a visit!