Diseases such as Lyme disease, malaria, Dengue fever and more recently, Zika virus, are major health challenges throughout the globe. However, many consumers are not aware of the prevalence and risk for pets. An Advisory Panel consisting of carefully selected industry experts has been assembled with the goal of educating retailers and pet owners about insect-borne disease risks and prevention methods.
According to the CAPC (Companion Animal Parasite Council), in 2015, one out of 16 dogs in the United States tested positive for Lyme, one out of 36 tested positive for Ehrlichiosis, and one out of 34 for Anaplasmosis – all tick-transmitted diseases. Symptoms for pets can range from mild fever and loss of appetite to extreme conditions such as lameness, stiff joints, and seizures. Protection from insect bites is paramount.
The Advisory Panel will collaborate and share information in order to better educate retailers and pet owners about the range of insect-transmitted illnesses, level of risk for pets and best practices for protection. Initial panel members include:
Dr. Katy Nelson – Dr. Katy is an associate veterinarian at the Belle Haven Animal Medical Centre, as well as host and executive producer of “The Pet Show with Dr. Katy” on Washington DC’s News Channel 8. She’s reports on animal health topics for Washington, DC’s All News Radio Station, WTOP News as well as on camera for WJLA ABC 7 News. She is the Medical Director of Pet Health for Stop Aging Now, Medical Director of Pet Health for BioStem Logics and the Proprietor of KJN Pet Marketing.
She has been featured on NBC’s Today Show, Fox and Friends, The Meredith Vieira Show, CNBC’s PowerPitch, HuffPost Live, to name a few, and is the expert for the second season of the popular show “Unlikely Animal Friends” to air this spring on NatGeo Wild. She is a frequent contributor to HuffPost Pets, BarkPost and PetMD and you can also read “Ask Dr. Katy” quarterly in the Virginia-Maryland-DC Dog Magazine, or online.
Dr. Katy has been a small animal veterinarian for 15 years, and is a proud graduate of the Louisiana State University School of Veterinary Medicine. In her spare time she is an avid traveler, athlete, wife, rescue proponent, and proud mom to three four-leggers and two two-leggers.
Dr. James St Clair – Dr. “J”, an outspoken voice for dog health techniques and practices, has had a core focus on pet owner education since 2004. He owns and operates full service, animal practices in central Connecticut (a hot bed for Lyme disease).
In the fall of 2004 Dr. J founded TopDog Health & Rehabilitation, a progressive canine physical rehabilitation facility focused primarily post-orthopedic surgery patients and older arthritic dogs. TopDogs focuses on research and development of innovative joint health products and therapy support products
In addition, as a pet-owner and father of young children living in a tick-infested region of the country known for its prevalence of Lyme disease, he is an enormous advocate of insect-borne disease awareness and the latest prevention strategies.
Charlotte Reed – As a pet care and lifestyle specialist, Charlotte provides pet owners with insights on how to best care for their animals. Millions have had the opportunity to watch her on CNN, Fox & Friends, The View, Today's Show, VH1 as well as many other televisions shows around the globe.
As one of the most popular and sought-after pet experts in the United States, Reed has been quoted as a pet expert in publications such as the The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Good Housekeeping, New York Magazine, US Weekly and dozens of other national and international newspapers and magazines. Radio listeners around the country have also tuned in to listen to Charlotte’s advice on responsible pet ownership and her recommendations on how to ensure living with a happy and healthy pet.
Reed honed her skills attending the ASPCA Companion Animal Service Department’s Apprenticeship Dog Training Program, Veterinary Technology Associates Program at City University of New York (CUNY), the New York School of Dog Grooming, and the University of South Hampton New College in Great Britain.
Carol Visser – Carol has been a leader in the pet industry for many years. A professionally trained pet stylist since 1982, she obtained her certification as a Master Groomer with NDGAA in 1990. Her career in the pet industry has included owning a busy, exclusive suburban salon, managing, teaching and creating curriculum at a major grooming school, and giving grooming seminars to professionals on both coasts in the US and as far away as New Zealand.
After her long time interest in training led to adding training to the services she offered, Carol successfully tested in 2007 as a Certified Pet Dog Trainer.
A contributing editor for Pet Business Magazine and frequent columnist for Grooming Business Magazine, she enjoys all aspects of owning and working with pets. Formerly a product consultant for PetEdge on the North Shore of Boston, she and her husband Glenn now own Two Canines Pet Services in Montville, ME, providing grooming, boarding, training, and day care services to MidCoast and Central Maine.
Melissa Houston – Melissa is the Director of Marketing and Communications at the Kansas Humane Society whose organization provided care and services to over 16,000 animals in 2014. She’s the weekly pet expert on the Pet Project, airing on Wichita, Kansas KSN News Channel 10, where she showcases an adoptable pet and answers pet questions from owners.
In addition, Melissa is a member of the board for the Sedgwick County Animal Response Team, who provide emergency care for animals in the event of a natural disaster. She has been involved in the animal community for 18 years with the mission to raise awareness about compassion and care for all companion animals.
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