Blogs

Trump’s Keyboard Warriors

This is my first political blog and it’s also a very personal one. Some of the topics that I’m looking forward to dedicating future blogs to include Trump’s Twitter Problem, Alter…

Source: Trump’s Keyboard Warriors

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Importance Considerations When Choosing a Pet CPR Certification Program

by Amy D’Andrea MEd, CVT

For many years, the American Heart Association has developed and disseminated guidelines on how best to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation on people experiencing cardiac arrest. Even though the skill of performing CPR is vital in emergency situations where warranted, no such evidence-based guidelines on Pet CPR existed in the veterinary world. Studies have shown that as a result of this lack of formal animal CPR methods, while more than 20 percent of human patients who suffer cardiac arrests in the hospital survive to go home to their families, the equivalent figure for dogs and cats is less than 6 percent.   The first evidence-based recommendations to resuscitate dogs and cats in cardiac arrest was developed recently through a collaboration of veterinarians, professional veterinary emergency organizations and veterinary educational institutions.  This method aims to standardize how CPR is performed on dogs and cats, ultimately leading to improved outcomes and higher survival rates.

Confidently knowing what is the best method of Pet CPR to use on dogs and cats when they are in cardiac arrest requires anyone that wants to become trained in animal CPR to do their homework.  If you google pet CPR you will get pages and pages of search results enticing you to attend a variety of training programs in Pet CPR.  Some classes are 3 hours while others average up to 8 hours.  The cost is all over the board, with some classes costing hundreds of dollars.  The topics covered in these classes do seem to be very similar and participants usually get a card or certificate indicating that they participated is such training.  What many consumers do not realize is that currently there is no regulatory body overseeing “certification” in pet CPR, so if you are not careful that certification you get by attending one of these classes might not even be worth the paper the CPR card is printed on.

What should you look for?  Well, typically the first paragraph says it all.  You need to make sure that the program you choose for your Pet CPR training was designed and endorsed by veterinarians.  The veterinary method developed recently is indisputably the industry standard.  It varies greatly from many of these “lay” programs but is deemed by scientific study to be more successful.  You also need to look at the instructor’s credentials.  Are they an animal/veterinary professional and did they receive adequate training in order to teach the class.  It is not uncommon to find the self-proclaimed pet CPR expert on the internet.  Look at the testimonials and reviews the company or business providing the certification.  Read what other people think of them and their classes and make sure to look at who they are affiliated with and if they are approved and/or recognized by any reputable organizations.  Some of the largest Pet CPR companies out there are not affiliated with anyone.  Make sure you verify whether or not you are actually getting certified by attending one of these Pet CPR training classes.  There are a number of programs out there that give the participant a “certificate of completion” which is very different from getting an actual certification. Certificate of completion merely confirms that you showed up, while getting certified means that you completed some form of assessment or evaluation by a trained professional that validates that you have mastered a particular skill (ie. CPR).

Now that you are informed as what you should look for in Pet CPR and First Aid training, you should know where we come in.  I am the founder of Pet Emergency Education, LLC one of the industry’s most rapidly growing Pet CPR, First Aid and Emergency Response training companies.  What sets Pet Emergency Education apart from other Pet CPR training and/or Certification Company is our unique trademark Pet CPR certification program (PetCPR+) based on the methods developed by emergency veterinarians and industry leaders in the scientifically proven animal CPR study previously discussed.  Our affiliations within the veterinary and professional animal community have shown us to be a leader in Pet CPR training.  We strive to provide the highest quality training to animal professionals and pet lovers everywhere, preparing them to manage life-threatening animal emergencies. Pet Emergency Education provides nationally recognized animal CPR, first aid and emergency response training to veterinary and animal professionals, pet owners, emergency responders and anyone else who genuinely cares for animals. Our programs offer detailed, hands-on training providing participants with a well-rounded education. Instructors are veterinary and animal professionals with experience in emergency management and who are certified by the Federal Emergency Management Agency in Animal Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Response and undergo an extensive training process to become certified Pet CPR instructors with our company. Our certification is recognized by employers, veterinary organizations, shelters, rescues, disaster response teams and more. At Pet Emergency Education, we are unlike any other Pet CPR certification company. We were founded by a Certified Veterinary Technician with 22 years of experience working in veterinary hospitals and teaching veterinary emergency and critical care in veterinary technology college programs. Our PetCPR+ and PetCPR+ Advanced programs are based on researched and proven successful methods of animal CPR developed by emergency veterinarians. Pet Emergency Education is proud to be an approved continuing education provider by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards allowing us to provide RACE approved continuing education to veterinary professionals.  Our programs have been sought after for staff trainings, and facility accreditations with one of our largest clients being veterinary hospitals and clinics that are accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association.

Often when you hear about CPR, first aid or even disaster management people think of the American Red Cross.  The American Red Cross, also known as The American National Red Cross, is a humanitarian organization that provides emergency assistance, disaster relief and education inside the United States. It is the designated US affiliate of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.  It is a highly respected organization that for many years offered a Pet First Aid training program.  This Pet First Aid class was one of the most recognizable CPR training classes for pet owners. There are believed to be hundreds, perhaps thousands, of certified Red Cross instructors that up until recently taught this well respected program to pet lovers and animal professionals across the country.  In 2015 the American Red Cross made the decision to discontinue its Pet First Aid program.  This has left many highly skilled, certified Pet CPR instructors, who happen to have quality equipment, supplies and training with no opportunity to teach their Pet CPR classes.

Knowing the prestige that the American Red Cross program has had in the animal community, Pet Emergency Education, LLC will now accept the transfer of any trained, certified Pet CPR instructor with the American Red Cross who wishes to continue offering their Pet CPR and First Aid classes through our company.  Red Cross instructors should contact info.petemergency@gmail.com for more information.

For anyone wanting to become Pet CPR certified we hope to see you at one of our upcoming classes.  If you would like to learn more about Pet Emergency Education, LLC, look for a Pet CPR certification class in their area or become a certified Pet CPR instructor please visit our website at  www.petemergencyeducation.com

Faded Ribbon Memories

The first memory I have of a horse is a day we were visiting my grandparents in Mapleville, RI.  I think I was 3 or 4 years old but its hard to say.  We lived in Smithfield, RI at the time and I know we moved to New Hampshire right around that age.  My grandparents had a next door neighbor who owned a grey gelding named Buddy.  Its weird that I remember that.  There is a picture of me a box somewhere sitting on Buddy’s back, and although he was old and a little shaggy, he was magnificent to me.  You see, I am horse crazy, always have been.  Horses have been one of the most significant and consistent things in my life. I would give anything, do anything, sacrifice anything just be around one.  It wasn’t that day with Buddy that turned me onto horses,  it was in my blood from the day I was born.

Horses are not cheap.  They are big, need room to move and eat A LOT.  The average horse consumes 15-20 pounds of hay a day and drinks 10-15 gallons of water.  Ask me any fact about a horse and I know it.  I studied them, read books about them and collected models of horses that I still have in boxes in my closet.  I had posters of horses on my walls, and every time I saw something with a horse on it in the store I wanted it.  My family was by no means in the financial position to support me owning a horse but there was never a birthday or a Christmas that went by that I didn’t ask for one.  If there was an opportunity to be near one I jumped at it.  It wasn’t until I turned 12 that I was able to start taking riding lessons and I started to spend every waking moment at the barn.  That’s what I have called stables ever since then, “the barn”.  A lot of other horse people do too.  That’s what we are, “horse people”.  A culture of fanatical nuts that worship a 1000 pound animal, spending any extra dime they can muster on halters, fancy saddles, leg wraps, grooming brushes and ridiculous blankets.  I worked at the barn for 6 years in order to pay for my equine addiction, grooming and exercising other boarders’ horses and, of course, the most glamorous task of them all, shoveling manure.  Horses produce an enormous amount of manure, approximately 37 pounds a day per horse to be precise.   That manure has to go somewhere, so for a horse obsessed “barn rat”, it was the task that paid for your horse addiction.  My first horse was a grey gelding named RoBo.  He was given to me for free and I kept him at the barn where I had been taking lessons and working.  He wasn’t anything very fancy in the world of competitive horse showing, but he was perfect to me.  I learned so much with that horse.  As a teenager going through so many of life’s challenging and finding my way, RoBo was my best friend.  He listened to my rants about the popular girls at school and what nasty witches they were, he listened to stories about boys, especially the ones I had crushes on.  There is a popular quote online that says, “A horse is the best kind of friend to have, you can tell them anything and no one else will ever know”. 

Being a teenage barn rat was awesome, especially since there were other girls my age at the barn that took lessons and owned horses.  We would have sleepovers before a horse show and giggle and fantasize about winning the biggest prize.  We would braid our horses’ manes and help each other at the competitions, loudly cheering each other on.  Owning my own horse by itself was amazing but I realized a talent that I have even passed down to my daughter.  I can ride.  Riding is not easy, especially competitive riding.  I spent those early days as a hunt seat rider riding English and jumping.  None of this activity is natural to a horse.  Horses in the wild do not choose to run around and prance to look fancy then leap over a 3 foot obstacle.  You have to be good, a good rider I mean, to make this look good, and not get killed.  This is an animal, with a mind of its own.  If it wants to take off running and scrape you off on a tree they will do just that.  Good riders earn their horse’s trust, good riders are dedicated to the craft and they appreciate what this animal can do.  I was good, very good, with boxes and boxes of ribbons and trophies to show for it. I’m not sure if I still have all of them, but I do have quite a few.  I keep them in boxes stored at my mother’s house in a shed.  Over time they have faded and frayed, but I am still proud of earning them.   I don’t want to brag, well maybe I do because I worked really, really hard to be really, really good at riding.  Not everyone is born a horse person.  You can’t just learn how to be one, or train to be one, you are just created to be one.   This is something my daughter Morgan is, a horse person.  I got her riding when she was 5 years old and she became a very good western pleasure rider winning multiple trophies and ribbons.

When I went to college I had to give RoBo away.  I just couldn’t afford college tuition and a horse but one of the women at the barn took him to trail ride at her own home.  She had a beautiful place with lots of trails to ride on.  I tried to keep in touch but eventually lost touch with her and my career started to take off.  A career that I picked because I knew I could still be with horses. I did not own another horse for 10 years but throughout that time I was fortunate enough to always have horses in my life.  I don’t think I could survive if I didn’t.  I have owned 6 horses in my life and each one has made its own impression on my heart.  Each one has taken through a different phase in my life and had their own personality.  None of them have compared to my beautiful American Paint Horse, Molly, whom I have owned for the past 14 years.  She really is my best friend and I raised her since she was 2 years old.  She has been with me through the most difficult seasons in my life but has always been a true friend.  Even now if I am having a tough day I tell my husband I am going to the barn.  It is my therapy, my comfort, and with her I just feel right in the world.  It also doesn’t hurt that we live in the most beautiful place, the foothills of Colorado. I board Molly in Golden, CO at a cool dude ranch.  It is true western cowboy living and no matter what discipline you ride I think every barn rat dreams of being a cowgirl.  Now I am.  I love to see the next generation of horse crazy little girls and their excitement when they come to ride.  I look forward to taking my daughter up into these mountains this summer on the horses.  I love that my husband, who wasn’t into horses until he met me, now loves to ride with me.  In the words of Sharon Ralls Lemon “The essential joy of being with horses is that it brings us in contact with the elements such as grace, beauty, spirit and peace that helps to heal our soul”.

 

Fire In the Sky

by Amy D’Andrea

Have you ever looked up at the sky in different places and wondered why it looked so different?  Have your ever noticed that the stars are barely noticeably in some areas of the country but burst out of the night in others?  I travel quite a bit for my job and have been to almost every state in the US.  One of the things I marvel at when I travel is how much the topography changes.  The United States seems to be such a diverse place ranging from ocean landscapes to glorious mountains, from lavish foliage to high deserts.  However one of the things that I marvel at the most is the sky.  I do not think it is something people think of very often. How different the sky looks I mean.  Different and diverse just by the very nature of where you are located when you look up at it.  It is the same sky everywhere.  Same sky in Florida as it is in Ohio but if you look at it, I mean really look at its features, you will certainly come to have a new appreciation for our sky.  

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The Social Media Agenda

I  would find it hard to believe if someone told me that they had never heard of Facebook.  Even if you are not computer savvy you have likely been exposed to social media in some way.  Social media is a phrase that society uses to refer to the rising number of websites on the internet that allow users to communicate and share information through a variety of means.  Whether you sit on your smartphone like the millions of millennials in a zombified state posting, tweeting, liking, commenting, sharing and retweeting or are simply looking to connect with friends and family, sites like Facebook give users the vehicle to interact in a manner like no other.

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