Future Insufficiency

Dog Pancreas

Dog Pancreas.

Dog Pancreas.

This week I’m going to educate you on the pancreas.  Now some of you might ask, what is a pancreas?  And what does it do?  Well, that is what I’m going to tell you today.  The pancreas is a small structure located near the stomach and attached to the wall of the small intestine.  It has two major functions.  Producing hormones to aid in the maintenance of a proper blood sugar (glucose) level, secreting them directly into the bloodstream.  It also produces important enzymes to aid in the digestion of protein and fats (lipids). These enzymes travel from the pancreas to the small intestine through a small tube called the pancreatic duct.  The glucose-regulating hormones produced by the pancreas are insulin and glucagon. When starches and carbohydrates are eaten, they are broken down into the sugar glucose. The glucose is absorbed through the wall of the digestive tract and passes into the bloodstream. Insulin allows glucose to leave the bloodstream and enter the body’s tissues. Glucose can then be utilized as energy for the cells. When glucose levels are high, glucagon causes it to be stored in the liver and muscles as glycogen. If not enough insulin is produced, diabetes mellitus (sugar diabetes) can occur.  The protein-digesting enzymes are trypsin and chymotrypsin. Fat digestion is aided by enzymes called lipases, also produced by the pancreas. Without these enzymes, dogs would not be able to break down important dietary components. When the pancreas does not produce adequate amounts of these enzymes the condition is called pancreatic insufficiency.  So now that you know what a pancreas does, I hope you have more appreciation for it in the future.

To see what the pancreas looks like, Click Here to watch my video.



Toxocara Canines

Concerning dogs.

Cute Dog Puppy

Cute Dog Puppy (Photo credit: epSos.de)

Dogs inhabit part of every continent except Antarctica, although dogs were brought there.  Dogs are carnivores even though they can ingest some fruits and vegetables. Carnivores should be fed a diet consisting primarily of fatty meat (not lean meat).  They can eat a reasonable amount of fruits, vegetables, and grains.  Feeding dogs too many plants will make them sickly and too much grain could give them diabetes.  Undoubtedly, dogs come in almost every size and shape imaginable. Varying from the tiny Chihuahua, the hulking Bull Mastiff, to the towering Russian Wolfhound.  Every dog has at least a small amount of fur ranging in color from black to white, with a few exceptions of course.  Interestingly, dogs can either have single or double layered fur.  Dogs with single layer fur do not shed as much, some examples being the Poodle or Chinese crested.  Whereas dogs with double layer fur shed more but are also less susceptible to cold and water (with a water resistant top coat) like Labradors and Saint Bernards.  Some of the benefits of owning a dog are enhanced physical health and psychological wellbeing.  If you own a dog, you are more likely to go for walks, and dogs seem to have a calming effect on humans.

There are also some unbeneficiary acts that we have to take into consideration.  About 4.7 million people were bitten by dogs in the United States last year.  It is undeniable that stray and poorly trained dogs can be quite aggressive no matter what size or breed.  Another unbeneficiary act that a dog can commit is the spread of Toxocara Canis.  Toxocara Canis eggs in dog feces can lead to toxocariasis in humans.  Which, left untreated, can lead to retinal damage and decreased vision.  Around 10,000 cases of Toxocara infections were reported in humans last year and almost 14% of the United States population is infected.  In Great Britan, 24% of soil samples taken from public parks contained T. Canis eggs.  Although uncommon, stray dogs and dogs that are poorly cared for have a lot higher risk of having Toxocara Canis worms and any other parasite or disease.  So to sum up, with the right diet, training, care, and depending on the breed you could have a healthy, good loving friend for up to 20 years or more.

This is a video of a well trained dog (my dog, Osa), we raised her from a puppy and she has great manners and is also very healthy (she is naturally stocky).   http://youtu.be/mBFlmRLqCKw