Category Archives: Health

TRUTH About Pet Food

Truth About Pet Food
What We Feed Them Matters

Keith Somers, Writer
Like Dog Wonders on My Facebook Business Page

Truth about pet food is sometimes difficult to find.  After some reading and careful searching, you can find it.   It is a question of safety, and the long term health and life of your dog or cat.

Have you ever wondered why so many brands pop up again and again on the recall list?   Check it out—here is a very short list, taken from the FDA records, of more than 1,350 pet foods that have been recalled in the last 5 years:

ALPO                                                                        Hill’s Pet Nutrition
AMERICAS CHOICE                                       Iams
Berkley & Jenson                                               Jerky Treats
Blue Buffalo                                                           Natural Balance
Blue Wilderness                                                  Nature’s Recipe
Bravo Pet Food                                                    Ol’ Roy
CAT’S                                                                         Pedigree
Diamond                                                                  PET PRIDE
Dick Van Patten’s                                               Premium Natural
DOCTORS FOSTER & SMITH                    Purina
Eukanuba                                                                Royal Canine
FELINE CRUISINE                                             SCIENCE DIET
Friskies                                                                     SPECIAL KITTY
Hartz Naturals                                                     WEIS TOTAL PET
Hill Country Fare                                               Wellness

Read the label—chances are there are ingredients in the brand you use, that with day in and day out, over-the-long-haul—are harmful to your family pet!

Group of twelve dogsTruth About Pet Food

Will Your Pet Live to Be 25?
It Can, With Proper Nutrition

Every single ingredient in your pet’s food plays a significant role in the nutritional make-up of the food. For sixteen years, tens of thousands of dogs and cats have been eating and thriving on the best

We attribute this success to our painstaking attention to the detail. Each and every ingredient in Life’s Abundance food is carefully chosen to work with the others to supply your companion animal with a highly nutritious and perfectly balanced meal every day, every year, over a lifetime.   That’s the truth about pet food.


from the beginning, 16 years ago,



  Keith Somers
is a registered Executive Independent Field Representative
of Life’s Abundance products
and a Team Member of the Healthy PetNet Foundation



Pet Food Recall Not Quite Yet

Pet Food Recall,
Not Yet—But Be Careful

Keith Somers, Editor
Like Dog Wonders on My Facebook Business Page

WTW5 –  Cincinnati, February 25, 2015

A class action lawsuit has been filed against Nestle Purina Petcare Company, alleging that some Purina Beneful dog foods include substances capable of killing dogs.  There has been no pet food recall as of today.

The suit claims more than 3,000 people have reported that their dogs became seriously ill and/or died after eating Purina Beneful, and some pet owners have incurred extensive veterinary bills to have their dogs tested and treated for illnesses.

The lawsuit was filed by Frank Lucido on Feb. 5 in Contra Costa County, California. It alleges that the following dry “kibble” dog foods are sickening and killing dogs:

  • Purina Beneful Healthy Weight
  • Purina Beneful Original
  • Purina Beneful Incredibites
  • Purina Beneful Healthy Growth for Puppies
  • Purina Beneful Healthy Smile
  • Purina Beneful Healthy Fiesta
  • Purina Beneful Healthy Radiance
  • Purina Beneful Playful Life

The suit claims the pet foods contain substances that are toxic to animals, including propylene glycol, an antifreeze component and known animal toxin that is poisonous to cats and dogs.

According to the lawsuit, Nestle knew or should have known that the Food and Drug Administration has prohibited propylene glycol from being used in cat foods.

The suit also claims the food contains mycotoxins, a group of toxins that are produced by fungus that occurs in grains. Mycotoxins are a significant health risk to dogs, the suit says. In the lawsuit, the plaintiff alleges that dangerous levels of mycotoxins have been found during testing conducted on Purina Beneful Original.

Pet Food Recall,
Here’s the Skinny

The consumer complaints show “consistent symptoms, including stomach and related internal bleeding, liver malfunction or failure, vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, weight loss, seizures, bloating, and kidney failure,” the lawsuit claims.

In many cases, pet owners claimed their dogs showed symptoms prior to these diagnoses, including lethargy, diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration, weight loss, seizures and bloating.

The class action lawsuit invites pet owners who have fed their dogs and cats Beneful brands between 2011 and 2015 to join. It asks for a jury to hear the case and award $5 million in damages.   Still no pet food recall!

Bill Salzman, director of corporate communications for Nestle Purina PetCare, has issued a statement denying the allegations in the lawsuit.

“We believe the lawsuit is baseless, and we intend to vigorously defend ourselves and our brand. Beneful had two previous class action suits filed in recent years with similar baseless allegations, and both were dismissed by the courts.

“Like other pet foods, Beneful is occasionally the subject of social media-driven misinformation. Online postings often contain false, unsupported and misleading allegations that cause undue concern and confusion for our Beneful customers.

“Bottom line: Consumers can continue to feed Beneful with total confidence.”

USA Today, March 2, 2015  –  2nd Class Action Suit Filed Today

The new filing is asking that Purina pay Lucido and other members of the class action lawsuit unspecified actual, statutory and punitive damages and restitution.

We inform—you resolve!

NBC News, February 24, 2015

ABC News. February 25, 2015

USA Today, March 2, 2015/2nd Class Action Suit


pet food recallHere is how you can help.

1.   Push the agencies that can do something about this potential pet food recall.   Get involved by contacting the following organizations:

2.   At a minimum, inform your friends and fellow pet owners to be very careful of what they feed by carefully checking the ingredients list on the package.

3.   Finally, take a look at a company that has never had a pet food recall in 16 years, since the inception of the company, for any reason—and it’s shipped fresh to your door in less than 6 weeks from the Life’s Abundance facility in Florida.


A Great Company
Helping Pets & Pet Lovers
A Business Opportunity of a Lifetime

Keith Somers
is a registered Executive Independent Field Representative
of Life’s Abundance products,
 the Healthy PetNet Foundation, and
a Member of the Healthy Pet Challenge Team

Natural Healthy Treats for Dogs & Cats


Natural Healthy Treats
For Dogs & Cats

by Keith Somers,
Like Dog Wonders on My Facebook Business Page

Natural healthy treats, as a special reward, brings great enjoyment to your dog or cat.   And it makes us feel good, too. The very act of giving a treat helps to solidify the bond that we share with our companion animals.  Unfortunately, most of the pet snacks available on the market today are non-nutritive “junk foods” that could be dangerous to your pet’s health.  It’s important to remember that even if you feed your pet a diet of healthy food, mass-marketed treats can have a significant negative impact on his or her health.
Thankfully, you don’t have to abandon this great way to reward your pet.  There’s no reason treats can’t be nutritious and tasty.  At Life’s Abundance our natural healthy treats are as important as our food for nutrition and pleasure.  You have our guarantee—we do not create pet products simply on measures of taste or texture.
Natural healthy treats is a wholly unique approach in the pet product industry.  To address the dietary requirements and taste preferences of all dogs and cats, we’ve developed a wide array of oven-baked healthy treats, savory training treats and satisfying pork-hide treats. These yummy products are uniquely formulated by one of our company veterinarians, Dr. Jane Bicks, to target particular health needs, both through balanced nutrition and specific vitamins and herbal ingredients.

natural healthy treatsWe have lots of
Natural Healthy Treats<–Click Here
your dog will love:

  •  Antioxidant Health Bars
  • Gourmet Dental Treats
  • Wholesome Hearts, Low-Fat Treats
  • Tasty Rewards Training Treats
  • Porky Puffs Treats
  • Buffalo Bully Sticks
  • Baked Treats
  • Buffalo Lung Fillets
  • Dog Treat Sampler Pack

We also have
Natural Healthy Treats <–Click Here
your cat will enjoy:

  • Chicken, herring & liver meals
  • Guaranteed vitamin C & E, omega-3’s, DHA & EPA
  • Healthier hair can minimize hairballs
  • Made in the USA

At Life’s Abundance, we’re driven by a desire to affect positive change in your dog’s and cat’s health, and that’s reflected in every single joyous bite. Most Nutritious Pet Food

Keith Somers
is a registered Executive Independent Field Representative
of Life’s Abundance products,  the Healthy PetNet Foundation, and
a member of The Healthy Pet Challenge Team

Pet Stress In Companion Dogs & Cats

Pet Stress In Dogs & Cats,
How To Understand It

Dr. Jane Bicks, DVM, Author

Executive Director
of New Product Development & Education
with Life’s Abundance, Jupiter, Florida

pet stress

Over the course of the last decade, there’s been ample evidence to support the idea that chronic stress plays a contributing role in a variety of medical conditions in humans. It may come as no surprise that researchers have similarly determined that long-term stress can be a factor in the medical and compulsive disorders of companion animals. Conditions such as feline lower urinary tract disease, inflammatory bowel syndrome, obesity, gastric dilatation volvulus (bloat), noise phobias and separation anxiety have all been found to have a chronic stress component in both dogs and cats (Luescher, 2003). Even so, compared to humans, relatively little research has been published regarding stress and its effects on companion animals.  

Some presume that the effects of pet stress on dogs and cats are not much different than those on other non-human animals. But, it appears that they’d be wrong.

In the mammalian world, dogs and cats are unique due to the bonds they share with humans, marked by their social interactions and the human homes in which they commonly reside.

As dogs and cats have gradually changed from living in natural settings to co-habitating with humans, one might expect that they would have fewer stressors than their outdoor ancestors. However, the evidence seems to contradict this assumption. Some veterinarians argue that, even though environmental stress is lower for today’s companion animals (i.e., less risk of predation, starvation, etc.), overall stress levels are actually higher. Furthermore, current sources of stress – such as boarding, veterinarian examinations, long-term confinement in a crate, boredom, habitual inactivity and even the sounds of modern life – are ones against which dogs and cats may not have well-developed defenses and are often unavoidable.

Stress has been eloquently described as “the sum of all nonspecific biological phenomena caused by adverse conditions or influences. These include physical, chemical, and/or emotional factors to which an individual fails to make satisfactory adaption and that cause physiological tensions that may contribute to disease” (Campbell et al, 2004).  Bodies manage stress through the autonomic nervous system and the endocrine system (referred to as the “hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis”).  In general, the response of the autonomic nervous system is very rapid and specific, whereas the endocrine system adjusts more gradually and is broader in its effect.

Pet Stress In Dogs & Cats,
How To Deal With It

In order to mount an adequate stress response, both the autonomic nervous system and the endocrine system require nutrients that can only be obtained through dietary intake.  For example, the endocrine messengers (norepinephrine, acetylcholine, and cortisol) are synthesized by the body.  However, in order for the body to create these messengers, it needs to obtain tyrosine, choline and acetate, as well as cholesterol and acetate . . . all from dietary sources. Synthesis of these endocrine messengers is also dependent upon ingesting nutrients such as zinc, copper and manganese, as well as significant amounts of vitamin C.  In the autonomic nervous system, signal transmission is made possible by electrical activity in the nerve cells. Fueling this activity requires dietary intake of sodium, calcium and potassium. All of these elements are vital for normal nervous and endocrine system responses to stress.

As a holistic pet food formulator, I know that the way the body responds to stress and chronic disease might have predisposing nutritional factors, such as a nutrient deficiency, imbalance, or toxicity.  A good formulator must know whether or not supplementation of a given nutrient can help a companion animal manage stress effectively.

In spite of how well you care for your dog or cat, it is still likely that they will encounter daily stressors.  While unavoidable, it is possible to minimize the effects through a combination of exercise, nutrition and holistic treatments.

Substances like valerian, chamomile and inositol can help to soothe the jangled nerves of dogs. Pheromone diffusers and sprays are effective stress reducers for both dogs (D.A.P) and cats (Feliway). If your budget is tight, you can do pet massage at home to help relieve tension. To develop a program of stress reduction that’s uniquely suited to your companion animal’s needs, consider enlisting the help of an alternative-medicine or holistic veterinarian.

Perhaps most importantly, keep in mind that providing proper nutrition is vital for helping companion animals deal with stress and lead long, healthy and happy lives. In addition to feeding a high quality diet, feeding them a daily supplement is a simple way to ensure sufficient nutrients to maintain a healthy endocrine and nervous system, in turn helping to cope with any stress your pet encounters.

Thank you for all you do to make the world a better place for companion animals. Each and every one of you has my sincerest wishes for holiday full of joy, and a wonderful new year of health!

Dr Jane Bicks, read more about her   Dr. Jane Bicks, read more about her.


Campbell, K.L., J.E. Corbin and J.R. Campbell. 2004. Companion Animals: Their Biology, Care, Health, and Management. Pearson Education, Inc., Upper Saddle River, NJ.

Cameron, M.E., R.A. Casey, J.W.S. Bradshaw, N.K. Waran and D.A. Gunn-Moore. 2004. A study of environmental and behavioural factors that may be associated with feline idiopathic cystitis. J. Small Anim. Pract. 45:144-147.

Luescher, A.U. 2003. Diagnosis and management of compulsive disorders in dogs and cats. Vet. Clin. North Am. Small Anim. Pract. 33:253-267.

DeNapoli, J.S., N.H. Dodman, L. Shuster, W.M. Rand and K.L. Gross. 2000. Effect of dietary protein content and tryptophan supplementation on dominance aggression, territorial aggression, and hyperactivity in dogs. J. Am. Vet. Med. Assoc. 217:504-508.

Dodman, N.H., I. Reisner, L. Shuster, W. Rand, U.A. Luescher, I. Robinson and K.A. Houpt. 1996. Effect of dietary protein content on behavior in dogs. J. Am. Vet. Med. Assoc. 208:376-379.

Casey, R. 2002. Fear and stress. In: BSAVA Manual of Canine and Feline Behavioural Medicine. (D. Horwitz, D. Mills and S. Heath, eds.) British Small Animal Veterinary Association, Gloucester, England. pp. 144-153. Glickman, L.T., N.W.

Glickman, D.B. Schellenberg, K. Simpson and G.C. Lantz. 1997. Multiple risk factors for the gastric dilatation-volvulus syndrome in dogs: a practitioner/owner case-control study. J. Am. Anim. Hosp. Assoc. 33:197-204.

Gue M., T. Peeters, I. Depoortere, G. Vantrappen and L. Bueno. 1989 Stress-induced changes in gastric emptying, postprandial motility, and plasma gut hormone levels in dogs. Gastroenterology 97:1101-1107.

Hennessy, M.B., V.L. Voith, T.L. Young, J.L Hawke, J. Centrone, A.L. McDowell, F. Linden and G.M. Davenport. 2002a. Exploring human interaction and diet effects on the behavior of dogs in a public animal shelter. J. Appl. Welf. Sci. 4:253-273. Hennessy, M.B., V.L. Voith, J.L. Hawke, T.L. Yound, J. Centrone, A.L. McDowell, F. Linden and G.M. Davenport. 2002b. Effects of a program of human interaction and alterations in diet composition on activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis in dogs housed in a public animal shelter. J. Am. Vet. Med. Assoc. 221:65-71.

Sheppard, G. and D.S. Mills. 2003. Evaluation of dogappeasing pheromone as a potential treatment for dogs fearful of fireworks. Vet. Rec. 152:432-436.

Simpson, J.W. 1998. Diet and large intestinal disease in dogs and cats. J utr. 128:2717S-2722S.

Takeda, E., J. Terao, Y. Nakaya, K. Miyamoto, Y. Baba, H. Chuman, R. Kaji, T. Ohmori and K. Rokutan. 2004. Stress control and human nutrition. J. Med. Invest. 51:139-45.

Kim, YM, Lee JK, Abd el-aty AM, Hwang SH, Lee JH, Lee SM. Efficacy of dog-appeasing pheromone (DAP) for ameliorating separation-related behavioral signs in hospitalized dogs. Can Vet J. 2010 Apr; 51(4):380-4.

Animal Hoarding A Growing Craze

Animal Hoarding
Strikingly Unbelievable

by Keith Somers,
Like Dog Wonders on My Facebook Business Page

Animal hoarding, while most of us have never heard of it, is on the increase!  Believe it or not!   Those “collected” range in species from  cats and dogs, to reptiles, rodents, birds, exotics and even farm animals.

animal hoarding

It is at once a complex issue on three levels:

  •    animal cruelty;
  •    mental health and;
  •    public safety.

Animal Hoarding,
An Animal Cruelty Issue

The figures are difficult to obtain, for obvious reasons.   The experts who deal with the problem—the ASPCA, the ALDF, the HARC, the HSUS, and dozens of local rescue groups, say that animal hoarding is increasing in the United States as much as 20% annually.   They all agree that up to a quarter million animals (250,000) a year are victims of animal hoarding.

The term “animal hoarding” refers to the compulsive need to collect and own animals for the sake of caring for them that results in accidental or unintentional neglect and abuse.  In the vast majority, most cases of animal hoarding result in animal cruelty.

Animal Hoarding,
A Mental Health Issue

Most animal hoarding is done by a single person who has:

  •     chosen to live alone
  •     problems acquiring, handling, managing, and getting rid of animals;
  •     cleverly hidden their activities so that they are never reported to mental health professionals and animal control authorities, except when others complain;
  •     difficulty making simple decisions;
  •     every intention of providing full care for the animals;
  •     an intense emotional attachment for each animal they care for;
  •     great difficulty coming to understand that their love for their animals is, little by little, destroying their home, their furniture and their lives by having too many animals to care for;
  •     confused their loving the animals with the reality of their inability to provide a safe, clean, and healthy home for them;
  •     neglected their own health, nutrition, and social life because they spend all their time, money, and energy caring for their animals;
  •     become overwhelmed and trapped by their indecision and sense of responsibility and are often deprived of sleep;
  •     been overcome by animal waste, and can suffer health problems created by the odor of ammonia, fleas, tics and animal-borne illnesses;
  •     unknowingly become the caretaker of all of the animals who lie and die in an environment of neglect, filth, and stressful overcrowding, as innocent prisoners of well-intentioned but misguided love.

Animal Hoarding,
A Public Safety Issue

Animal hoarding is a complex and intricate issue with far-reaching effects that poses significant safety, health and financial concerns for any community.   These include:

  •     fire hazards from extreme clutter;
  •     decaying or damaged electrical wiring;
  •     blockage of exits from dwelling;
  •     lack of running water and electricity;
  •     infestation from rodents or insects;
  •     potential for spread of zoonotic diseases;
  •     heavy accumulations of feces and urine can damage dwellings beyond repair, making them structurally unsound;
  •     a release of a host of potentially toxic bioaerosols and gases into the air, creating dangerous odor problems;
  •     disease exposure occurring through inhalation, contact, or via insects—flies, fleas, tics, and lice;
  •     failure of functional sanitary codes in kitchen and bathroom facilities;
  •    communities left to cover the costs of investigating, rescuing, treating, housing, feeding, and in some cases euthanizing animals;
  •    additional costs for the hoarder, for housing, hospitalization, medical and psychiatric treatment, legal services, public defenders and incarceration, if necessary.


The following article is a recent example of animal hoarding, edited from several news accounts dated:   Tuesday, October 28, 2014.

What started as a call to check on the safety of a woman ended with troopers removing 80 of 150 cats from a River Road home in Pleasantdale, NY, on Tuesday.   Fire department, troopers and humane society workers will return on Wednesday to get the remaining 70 cats, including a number of cats in the walls.

“The house is in a deplorable condition. This is not what we expected to find,”  one of the troopers said.

State Police didn’t identify the woman, but Brad Shear, executive director of the Mohawk Hudson Humane Society, said she and her sisters had been involved in previous cat hoarding reports in Schaghticoke, Halfmoon and Vermont.  “This makes 450 cats,” Shear said of the total in four incidents in four years.

Two of the three sisters who may have lived in or frequented the house, were stopped in 2010 by police in Bennington, VT, with 77 cats living in two cars.

Trooper Jeff Wait carried out the welfare check on Tuesday.  After he found the cats, State Police secured a search warrant for the River Road residence.

Troopers and Mohawk-Hudson workers wore white hazmat suits and were to be decontaminated because of the infestation of fleas in the house. The Rensselaer County Decontamination Team vehicle was sent to the scene.

animal hoardingThe cats were taken to be evaluated at the Mohawk Hudson Humane Society in Menands. They appeared to have eye infections, respiratory infections and to be anemic, Shear said.

The shelter needs canned cat food to feed the cats and money to buy antibiotics. The food and money can be dropped off at the shelter at 3 Oakland Ave. in Menands, NY 12204, phone: 518-434-8128, or donations can be made through

 Keith Somers
is a registered Executive Independent Field Representative
of Life’s Abundance products
and the Healthy PetNet Foundation


Pet Food Probiotics Are Essential

Pet Food Probiotics
Are Essential Good Bacteria—Why?

by Keith Somers,
Like Dog Wonders on My Facebook Business Page

Pet food probiotics have to be on everyone’s minds when considering the total health, happiness, and longevity of our pet companions.   But what are probiotics anyway?

About three months ago I was visited by one of those pesky tiny “deer ticks”.   He bit me!   Since then I have been on three, four-week doses of antibiotics.   I am combating diagnosed Lyme Disease.   This bad bacteria is called borrelia burgdorferi.

Pet Food Probiotics
Focus on Good Bacteria

Unfortunately, antibiotics destroy good bacteria along with the bad. Hence in a time of aggressive antibiotics use, to the rescue comes probiotics (good bacteria) to enhance not only digestion, but immune function as well.

I am sure my great grandmother had never heard of “probiotics”.   But, she did know the value of yogurt, cottage cheese, sauerkraut, clabbered milk, and yeast.    All of them promote better digestive health.

Élie Metchnikoff first suggested the possibility of colonizing the gut with beneficial flora (probiotics), in 1907.   He was a Russian scientist and Nobel prize winner working at the Pasteur Institute in Paris.

pet food probiotics

He wondered why the villagers living in the Caucasus Mountains of Bulgaria, lived so much longer than most of the rest of the Bulgarian population.  He found that it was because they were drinking a fermented yoghurt drink on a daily basis.   It was a probiotic called Lactobacillus bulgaricus.    It seemed to have improved their health and longevity.   Probiotics are good bacteria.

Leading scientists today are discovering many types of probiotics  such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, Saccharomyces boulardii, and Bifidobacterium infantis.   All of them have various properties and can have different healthy effects on the body.

Pet Food Probiotics Effect the
Health, Happiness, and Longevity of Our Pets

These “human” studies have now spilled over into the pet food probiotics industry.   That’s good.

Veterinarians1 and nutritionists are still sorting out how probiotics work.   At this point they believe that they can:

  •     Promote digestive health by blocking bad bacteria from establishing colonies.
  •     Produce substances that prevent infection; regulate inflammatory responses.
  •     Strengthen intestine mucus.
  •     Prevent and treat certain skin allergies and diseases.
  •     Enhance cellular  homeostasis—a state of balance in the body.
  •     Maintain a healthy immune system.
  •     Produces antioxidants thus helping to prevent periodontal disease and “doggie breath”.


1“The Promise of Probiotics”, Dr. Jane Bicks, DVM, April 25, 2012, Life’s Abundance Newsletter.


Keith Somers
is a registered Executive Independent Field Representative
of Life’s Abundance products
and the Healthy PetNet Foundation


Do NOT use the DogWonders site to attempt to diagnose or treat your pet.
Your veterinarian is ALWAYS the best source of health advice.

Please DO use my site as an informative and educational opportunity.  I will do my best to ensure that what is presented here,
is helpful to you, accurate and up-to-date.

Dog Supplements Essential for Nutrition

Dog Supplements
Are Crucial to Daily Diet

by Keith Somers  /  Like  Dog Wonders on Facebook

Dog Supplements
Our holistic veterinarian and product formulator,
Dr. Jane Bicks—has never met a dog she didn’t love.

“The more we learn about the way bodies function, the more amazing they seem to us. There is a growing amount of anecdotal evidence that suggests a mammal’s body has a highly complex, natural intelligence.   As a holistic veterinarian, I review such evidence, interpreting it within the context of established scientific knowledge. Based upon these observations, it seems that a dog’s body “prefers” nutrients as they exist in real foods, in their more natural state.  On a cellular level, their bodies are familiar with the nutrient components. Therefore the body knows to absorb and assimilate exactly what it needs. That is why I believe that small amounts of nutrients in real foods can have a profound affect on a dog’s body. In light of this information, I formulated a new approach.  Adding dog supplements to the overall nutrient intake, Life’s Abundance Wellness Food Supplement for Dogs has been created”.

Dr. Jane Bicks, DVM
Life’s Abundance Product Formulator

Dog Supplements Are Vital
In Maintaining Overall Health

Dog supplements are important to your dog’s diet.  They can play a crucial role in maintaining overall health.  We know that some dogs require additional nutritional intake to help them maintain a healthy body.  These requirements are due to age, breed, environment and other factors.  Based on this premise, our holistic veterinarian has formulated a brand new formula to enhance your dog’s daily diet.  The perfect complement to a healthy diet is Life’s Abundance Wellness Food Supplement for Dogs.  It is formulated with a broad array of naturally nutritious ingredients from real food to help maintain overall health. The nutrients contained in these superior dog supplements are sourced from foods, like poultry liver, cranberries, carrots, eggs, pineapples and many others.

Dog Supplements Are Now
Nutritious Chewable Tablets

In these chewable dog supplements, each tablet includes the following nutritious ingredients:

  • Poultry liver, which is rich in vitamin A and D, protein and selenium.
  • Natural vitamin E, which is an antioxidant.
  • Taurine, which is an essential amino acid.
  • Stabilized rice bran, which is a rich source of vitamins and minerals.
  • Cranberries, a rich source of vitamin C, dietary fiber and manganese.
  • Carrots, a rich source of beta-carotene (vitamin A), vitamins C, D, and E, riboflavin, niacin, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, sodium and iron.
  • Dried egg, one of nature’s most nutrient-dense foods, plays an important role in a balanced diet. Eggs are considered a complete protein source, providing essential amino acids, vitamins and minerals (vitamins A, B, E, biotin, and sulfur). Eggs also provide healthy fats, such as omega-6 for healthy skin and a glossy coat.
  • Flaxseed meal is a rich plant source of antioxidant lignans and omega-3 fatty. Flax seed meal also has a very high level of protein and essential amino acids. In addition, flax seed meal contains significant amounts of fiber, vitamin E, folic acid, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6 and is extremely rich in the minerals potassium, calcium and phosphorus.
  • Direct-fed microbials, ingredients similar to those found in supermarket yogurts.
  • Ester-C*, a unique and patented form of vitamin C (calcium ascorbate).
  • Tomato pomace, a good source of lycopene and vitamin C.
  • Alfalfa meal, which is a good source of protein, vitamin A, niacin and calcium, and a very good source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, folate, pantothenic acid, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, copper and manganese.
  • Pineapple, which is a good source of enzymes, vitamins, minerals and fiber.

Like all of our superior-quality dog supplements, these delicious compressed tablets are scored in-half for easy splitting.  And with a tantalizing liver flavor, your dog will be wagging a happy tail when it comes time for his or her supplement!

There are three to select from,
take your pick & CLICK:

Agility & Joint      –      Skin & Coat      –      Daily Supplement


* Ester-C® (calcium ascorbate) is a licensed trademark of Inter-Cal Corporation. Manufactured under U.S. Patent No. 4,822,816.  Other patents pending.

Keith Somers is a registered
Independent Field Representative of Life’s Abundance products
and The HealthyPetNet Foundation

When contacting Life’s Abundance directly,
please use my ID#  20092539

Overweight Dogs Face Health Risks

Overweight Dogs,
A Very Critical Health Issue

by Keith Somers  /  Like Keith & Dog Wonders on Facebook

overweight dogs
Overweight dogs was highlighted last year in a story about a 77 pound, 7 year old, Oregon dachshund named “Obie”.   The New York Daily News, reported the story on May 2, 2013.   After being rescued by a veterinary technician, Obie had lost 40 pounds, more than half his weight in 9 months.  Obie is symptomatic of overweight dogs and in the United States.

Overweight Dogs,
Read It and Weep

CALABASH, N.C., MARCH 31, 2014—Most of the nation’s dogs are overweight, and a majority of their owners are blind to the issue.  New research, released by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention (APOP), tells an alarming story.  Veterinarians who assessed dogs for the recent study recognized that 52.6% are overweight or obese.

“Among all diseases that perplex the veterinary community and plague our population of dogs, obesity has the greatest collective negative impact on dog health”, said Dr. Ernie Ward.  He is the veterinarian and founder of APOP.   He continued, “Yet it is almost completely avoidable.  The pet industry is mighty and well-meaning, but it’s time we stop accepting the status quo.  We must start working together to fight obesity through knowledge and action.”

Overweight Dogs
Are in “The Fat Gap”

Veterinary nutritionist and internal medicine specialist at the University of Tennessee’s College of Veterinary Medicine Dr. Joe Bartges, cautions that many pet owners don’t recognize when their pet is overweight.

Dog owners who agreed to have their dogs assessed for the study were first asked to classify their dogs’ weight.  Veterinarians using the owners’ data, ultimately classified the dogs as obese.  Their findings then revealed that a whopping 93 percent of dog owners initially thought their dog was in the normal weight range.  APOP refers to this disparity as the “fat gap.”

Overweight Dogs
Have Grave Health Risks

New York-based veterinary endocrinologist and APOP board member Dr. Mark Peterson agrees. “The soaring rate canine obesity is taking a terrible toll on our dogs’ health. There is a vast population of overweight dogs facing an epidemic of diabetes. The best preventive measure a dog owner can make is to keep their dog at a healthy weight.  Diabetes is far easier to prevent than treat, especially when twice daily insulin injections are needed.”  Here are the risks of this neglect:

  • Diabetes
  • Skeletal stress, with damage to joints, bones, and ligaments
  • Respiratory problems, increased blood pressure, and heart disease
  • Lowers metabolism
  • Decreased stamina and heat intolerance
  • Decreased liver function
  • Digestive disorders
  • Decreased immune function
  • Skin and hair coat difficulties
  • Cancer
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Decreased quality and length of life
  • Increases appetite

Life’s Abundance Weight-Loss Formula is veterinarian-formulated by Dr. Jane Bicks, to help your dog lose weight and maintain optimum health.

Dr. Jane is a nationally recognized authority on holistic treatment of animals.  Additionally, she helps to ensure that Life’s Abundance innovative health formulas exceed the highest of quality standards, effectiveness and safety.

Click below and order some
shipped to your door fresh—try it!

Weight-Loss Formula
Keith Somers
is a registered Independent Field Representative
of Life’s Abundance products
and the Healthy PetNet Foundation

Pet Insurance, Research It, Buy It!

by Keith Somers  /  Like Keith & Dog Wonders on Facebook


Pet insurance—let’s put a hold on that for a second, and first look at the total cost of having a dog for its life-time.   You will be as surprised as I was because it is much more expensive than you might think.  The following information comes from the named sources and covers a life-time of 12 years, and averaging the size of the dogs.  Why is there such a cost differential?  Because there are a multitude of variables like:  size, breed, dog source (breeder, shelter, etc.), pet insurance, necessary and unnecessary items, where you live, veterinary medical costs (can be thousands of dollars in a year), and hundreds of options and surprises.

  •    $  59,668 – Bloomburg
  •    $  18,805 – Raising Spot
  •    $  21,574 – Pet Education
  •    $  50,280 – Forbes
  •    $  10,225 – ASPCA
  •    $  31,995 – AKC

I am not sure how helpful this information is for you, other than to point out that having a dog is expensive.  But when all is said and done, the money isn’t the measure anyway, its the unconditional love that greets you at the door, and for a life-time it is well worth the cost.

Pet Insurance Budget Options, Considering Probable Costs

  •    If you can do so, pay cash for everything as it comes up;
  •    Monthly, set aside the money you would be spending on insurance premiums for use when accidents, illnesses, or other unusual emergencies pop-up;
  •    Go into debt to pay for the veterinary services—not recommended;
  •    Invest in a quality pet insurance that will keep both you and your dog health and happy!

Over the long haul, doing your homework here will save you hundreds of dollars in the years ahead.  A dacade or more ago, pet insurance may not have been a very important consideration—but today, new diagnostic tools and methods, new treatments, new surgical procedures, and new therapies are being used so that the increased scope of veterinary science may require all of us to take another look at pet insurance as a sensible option.

One final thought—increasingly many families now consider their pet a valued member of the family and will do anything to keep their dog or cat healthy and happy.  If that’s the case with you, then pet insurance might be a preferable alternative.

Pet Insurance Questions With Answers

The answers to the following questions are taken from the Life’s Abundance partner, Hartville Pet Health Insurance.  You can visit the site below for more information.

Are there caps on illnesses or incidents?
What are the exclusions, if any?
Are there levels of coverage—basic, wellness, superior?
What about neutering and spaying?
Is there coverage on prescriptions/meds?
What are the options for deductibles?
There is a low annual deductible of $100 per pet.

How and when are claims paid?
          Take your pet to any veterinarian in the US or Canada and pay for the services.  Then fill out a simple claim form andmail, fax, or email it with your receipts.  You can then track the status of your claims conveniently online at the free Member Center.

Can any veterinarian be used?
          You can use any licensed vet in the US or Canada.

Is after hours emergency available?
Is there a breed differential?
What is your policy regarding accident coverage?
How are hereditary and congenital needs covered?
Do you offer preventative coverage—is the cost lower?
Do you have a pet age limit—cost?
Are there discounts—for more than one pet?
          Save 10% on multiple pets with the Base Plan Premium
Is there a co-payment?

You may be able to protect your budget and your pet’s health, through Life’s Abundance and its partnership with Hartville, offering pet health insurance.

Bandaged FootGet Answers

Keith Somers
is a registered Independent Field Representative
of Life’s Abundance products
and the Healthy PetNet Foundation


Dog Laser Therapy May Help With IVDD – Part I

Dog Laser Therapy May Be
An Option for Your Pup!  –  Part I

by Keith Somers  /  Like Keith & Dog Wonders on Facebook


Dog Laser Therapy for dogs with Intervertebral Disk Disease (IVDD) is too many times an unknown procedure, often leaving only two options to the dog and to the family;  costly surgery, or euthanasia.

What a shame—$5,000 or death!

Yesterday, through his sister, I heard of an elderly gentleman living in another state, whose Lab “went down” on Monday.  He wept on the phone as he told his sister that the only choice he had been given for his precious pet companion was euthanasia—it occurred on the following day and he was heart-broken.

Dixie belongs to our middle son and his wife.  She’s a very happy, loving, and energetic Dachshund, and at the time of this writing four and one-half years old.  She is the focus and inspiration of this story of hustle and hope about her encounter with IVDD and dog laser therapy.

Dog Laser Therapy May Be A
Need to Know for Other Breeds!

Dixie_Dad-OptimizedlDixie is Stephen and Mary’s puppy and lives in High Point, NC, often coming to visit with us in Fincastle, Virginia.  She was here on Saturday, March 10, 2012.  After having Stephen take some photos of her in my arms (left), as I carefully put her down in the grass, she yelped, and I said, “Oh, oh!”  Throughout that weekend, she told us a couple of times that she was in pain.  On Sunday afternoon they packed up to return to their home in High Point.  That night and into Monday morning, Stephen called us several times that she had “gone down” in her rear quarters which all of us thought might be Intervertebral Disk Disease (IVDD), a debilitating and costly disease that affects Dachshunds, Corgis, Papillions, Basset Hounds, and some other breeds, but is particularly prevalent in Dachshunds.

With or without surgery, a dog can experience multiple intervertebral disk disease episodes during his/her life.  As Brisson el al noted, “All intervertebral disks in dogs are susceptible to degeneration; therefore, a dog can have several episodes of disk extrusion.”¹  They continued, “Dachshunds were found to be approximately 10 times more likely to have recurrence than other breeds . . . ”

Dixie XRay 2The disease effects the flexible discs made up of cartilage which cushions between each bone (vertebrae) of the spinal cord, extending from the base of the skull to the end of the tail.  The swollen, herniated disc puts pressure on the spinal cord and other nerve endings in the area.  This is very painful and the pressure on the spinal cord prevents nerve impulses from passing between the brain and the rear of the body so that the dog cannot walk or control its colon or bladder.  Neglect will result in quickly bringing severe damage to the spinal cord and can lead to total and permanent paralysis.  Here is the x-ray taken of Dixie’s spine on the following Tuesday, at the Hanging Rock Animal Hospital, here in Roanoke.

After visits to two Emergency Veterinary Hospitals in the Triad, the doctors confirmed IVDD and sent Dixie home with pain and anti-inflammatory medications and orders for complete cage rest until Stephen and Mary could contact their regular doctor when the office opened on Monday morning.  They had been told that surgery would probably be necessary, and it should be done within 48 hours to avoid permanent paralysis, and that it would cost about $5,000.  There was no mention of the option of laser therapy.

I asked Stephen to not make any final decisions about Dixie for the moment until I could make some phone calls.  As soon as offices were open on Monday morning, I called both the Hanging rock Animal Hospital,² just 10 miles south on I-81, and the Virginia Tech College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg, Virginia, about forty miles southwest of our home.  We had taken our three year old Dachshund, Cocoa, to Tech for successful back surgery because of IVDD, twice for two different locations on her spinal cord, six months apart, in 2000.  We paid at that time $2,500 for each surgery.  They told me at VTCVM, that surgery for Dixie in 2012 would cost $3,700, including a CT, or MRI.

Todd_HangingRockI then reported back to Stephen what I had found out, and together we decided to bring her to the Hanging Rock Animal Hospital to see Dr. Todd Czarnecki, DVA, CVA, (above) for a consultation.  In talking with him last year he told us that he was working toward a promising new non-surgical procedure for dogs who had been struck down with IVDD.  He was using laser therapy for dogs.  It was a chance, but we had hope that it would be the right choice for Dixie, and as the months have passed by, it was.

So on Tuesday, March 13, I met Stephen, half-way to High Point, picked up Dixie and took her back to Roanoke to see Dr. Todd for an evaluation.  He said she was a great candidate for laser therapy for dogs, and he would like to see her treated twice a week for eight weeks beginning today.  She was given her first treatment that afternoon—no invasive surgery, no sedative, no needles,  no pain, and no long healing process, just the weekly treatments, some T:LC and cage rest.  The laser therapy treatments would last about 1o-15 minutes and the only sensation for her would be a slight warming in the area being treated—and the cost for the total package of laser therapy would be just under $500.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHere is Stephen’s mother Eva, with Dixie as the first Laser Therapy treatment is administered by one of  the Licensed Veterinary Technicians at Hanging Rock Animal Hospital (above).  She and Dr. Todd both said, “We have seen this therapy do miracles for the dogs we have treated!”


What Happened to Dixie After Laser Therapy, Part II

Here is the rest of the story:


¹  Brisson BA, Moffatt SL, Swayne SL, et al.  Recurrence of thoracolumbar intervertebral disk extrusion in chondrodystrophic dogs after surgical decompression with or without prophylactic fenestration:  265 cases (1995-1999).  J Am Vet Med Assoc.  2004;224:1808-1814.
²  Hanging Rock Animal Hospital is accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association and, as far as I know, at this writing is the only animal hospital in the Roanoke Valley to offer K-Laser Therapy for dogs in treating IVDD for their patients—