what the government is doing with regards to cat dewclaws

Written by Dr. Rose DiLeva VMD, MS, CVCP, CVA.

Q:    I have heard some varying information about what the government is doing with regards to cat dewclaws among other things. Can you elaborate on these topics, please? 

A:  From the latest information that I’ve read, the Santa Monica City Council in California voted to draft a new law that would restrict the process of declawing in cats. It appears that a similar ban is being sought out in San Francisco as well. The way the process goes, once an ordinance is drafted it goes to the city council where it has until December 31st, 2009 to take effect. Public hearings are allowed and required followed by yes or no votes by the second reading of the ordinance. There are numerous reasons why some people find it necessary to declaw their cats and personally I find the legislation appalling. It should be up to the owner of the cat and the veterinarian to determine the benefits or deterrents to such a procedure.

Toxic Foods for you Cat

Written by Dr.Rose DiLeva VMD,MS,CVCP,CVA.

Q:     I just purchased a new kitty and want to know what foods are toxic to cats?

A:    There are a number of human foods that can be toxic to cats and cause anything from intestinal obstruction to gastrointestinal upsets and neurologic sign such as seizures. Since cats are carnivores it is best to purchase a pet cat food that is balanced and nutritious. In my opinion you should look for one of the first two ingredients listed to be of meat origin, i.e. chicken, beef, venison, duck, rabbit. This will ensure that your cat gets the meat protein that it requires.

The Scary Truth About Pet Foods

Written by Dr. Rose DiLeva, VMD, MS, CVCP, CVA.

What are we really feeding our Pets?

A:    The pet food industry is a multi-billion dollar per ?year industry. More than 95% of United States companion animals derive their nutritional needs from a single source; that source is commercial pet food. The quality of pet food is extremely variable. There are literally hundreds of pet foods on the market and they range in quality of ingredients. Some contain grains and by-products, others contain human grade meats. This is where the importance of reading the pet food ingredients label comes into play. 


Written by Dr Rose Dileva VMD,MS,CVCP,CVA.

The 1970’s were an exciting decade in medicine in the United States.  The introduction of acupuncture from the East opened up many avenues of healing. The public became more aware of alternative methods of healing, both for themselves and their pets.  Individuals that had a positive response to non-conventional treatment modalities, such as acupuncture, homeopathy, Chinese herbs or chiropractic adjustments, began to question whether these same treatments would be beneficial for their companion animals. 


Written by Rose DiLeva VMD, MS, CVCP, CVA.

Q:   I’ve recently found out that acupuncture is practiced on pets. What pets exactly?

A:     Acupuncture is the placement of tiny needles into specific predetermined locations, called acupuncture points, on the body for the purposes of healing. The word “acupuncture” is derived from the Latin “acus”, which means “needle” and “pungare”, which means, “to pierce”.


Written by Rose DiLeva VMD, MS, CVCP, CVA.

      I prefer not to use any of the topical and toxic flea preventatives on the market. Do you know of any natural ways I can help prevent fleas from bothering my dogs and cat?


     A successful flea control program involves treating your pet, as well as, the environment. The adult female flea can lay as many as five hundred eggs a day. That can translate into tens of thousands of fleas by the end of the month. Under ideal conditions of temperature and humidity the flea can go through its four-stage life cycle which is egg, larva, pupa and adult within three to four weeks.


Written by Rose DiLeva VMD, MS, CVCP, CVA.

     How would my dog get heartworm disease?


     Heartworm disease is transmitted via infected mosquitoes. A mosquito bites an infected dog and takes a blood meal. It then takes in the immature form of the parasite. The parasite (Dirofilaria immitis) is incorporated into the mosquitos body and undergoes changes. The next time it bites a dog it passes on the parasite, which finishes it’s life cycle in the dog’s body, ultimately developing into an adult worm. The adult is very thin  and  lodges in the pulmonary artery and top right chamber of the heart (right atrium).


Written by Rose DiLeva VMD, MS, CVCP, CVA.

     After twenty years in veterinary medicine and almost as many years studying and practicing the holistic modalities involved, I have finally come upon an herbal based formula that appears to have significant fighting power against cancer in pets. Examples of what the world have considered break- throughs in modern medicine in the past were the discovery of penicillin, aspirin and morphine. All of these are botanicals that came from plants or, in the case of aspirin, the bark of a tree! No single botanical base has had more single uses than the common aspirin. We take it for the simple headache, yet, in certain circumstances, we are advised to take it to take it to avoid getting blood clots in particular medical conditions. Basically, botanicals are the basis of most of the pharmaceuticals that exist and have been synthesized in the conventional medical profession today.


Written by Rose DiLeva VMD, MS, CVCP, CVA.

All companion animals should be provided with clean, fresh water every day (ideally filtered water or spring water). The water bowel is best if made out of stainless steel or ceramic since some dogs and cats do have allergies to bowls made of plastic and this can cause inflammation, irritation and lesions around the mouth and chin.

All pets should receive their food once or twice a day (my preference is twice a day) at approximately the same time. Free choice food left down all day is a NO NO. This allows the pet to pick throughout the day and eventually will lead to an overweight animal. It also interferes with the digestive process that begins in the mouth.


Written by Dr Rose Dileva VMD,MS,CVCP,CVA.

      Reiki has long been practiced on humans as a form of energy medicine and energy healing. It originated in Japan with a Dr. Mikao  Usui. Many schools have developed since then but Dr. Usui is considered the founder. It was through Dr. Usui’s line that I became a Reiki Master in 2003. The term Reiki translates into “universal life energy.” Reiki is considered part of the range of holistic healing presently gathering acceptance into mainstream medicine, particularly energy medicine.  Since everything in the universe, us, plants, trees, animals, the oceans, all are made up of energy,  we are all connected. It is through this connection that Reiki is able to help a person or animal heal, not just on a physical level, but also, on an emotional, mental and spiritual level, as well.


Written by Rose DiLeva VMD, MS, CVCP, CVA.

     I just purchased my first pet, a 10-week-old terrier mix. We are just introducing him to our Siamese cat. What can I do to keep them healthy in the winter weather?


     One of the greatest potential dangers to animals in the winter months is antifreeze (ethylene glycol). Antifreeze is extremely toxic to pets. It has a sweet taste that is often what attracts dogs and cats to taste it. Consequently, even the small amount that may spill on the garage floor can be fatal. Be sure to clean up even the smallest amount.


Written by Rose DiLeva VMD, MS, CVCP, CVA.

     I have heard that there are specific dietary recommendations for pets with cancer. Is this true? Also, are there any other supplements that can be used to help fight cancer?


    There are numerous options to consider when dealing with a pet that has been diagnosed with cancer. There are many different kinds of malignant cancer. Osteosarcoma is a type of bone cancer that is very aggressive and very painful. Squamous cell carcinoma is typically made up of a cell type called squamous cells. It tends to invade soft tissues such as the gums and mouth. It too is very aggressive and fast growing.

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