General medicine deals with the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease, disorder and injury in animals.
- Yellow or brown buildup (tartar) on the teeth
- Red, swollen, or bleeding gums
- Bad breath
- Excessive drooling
- Changes in eating or chewing habits
- Pawing at the face
- Loose teeth
Most pet owners are unaware that scratching, licking, biting, and chewing are tell-tale signs of an underlying skin problem. While there are over 150 different skin diseases that can affect pets, managing skin problems is possible. Skin disease or irritation can cause distress. To relieve that suffering, we offer dermatological testing and treatment for animals that can help your pet live comfortably. In trying to diagnose and treat skin disorders, your role as a pet owner is essential. Discovering what causes flare-ups and irritation will primarily be your job. Pay attention to your pet's reaction after eating, playing outside, and interacting with other animals. During your appointment, our veterinarian will discuss your observations to determine a series of laboratory tests that will help diagnose or treat your pet's skin issues.
Common dermatological issues for pets:
- Auto-immune disorders
- Chronic ear disease
- Disease of the foot
- Ear infections
- Flea allergy dermatitis
- Hair loss
- Hormone disorders
- Parasitic, bacterial, or fungal infections
- Skin allergies caused by contact, environment, or food
- Skin cancer
Our ophthalmology treatments focus on eye care and ocular disease prevention. Our annual pet vision exams evaluate current eye health, measuring tear production, eye pressure, and potential corneal scratches. If more serious animal eye issues are detected, such as glaucoma, cataracts, early vision loss, or dry eye problems, they will be addressed and treatment will be planned. During treatment planning, all options and recommendations will be thoroughly discussed so we can build an effective and comfortable vision procedure for you and your pet.
Indications of pet eye problems:
- Abnormal growth near or on the eye
- Behavioral changes, namely a sense of depression
- Bumping into objects or seemingly lost in a familiar setting
- Discoloration of the iris or pupil
- Hazy film over pupil
- Increase in discharge from eyes
- Pawing and rubbing eyes
- Red, swollen eyes
- Sensitivity to light or squinting
In an effort to provide your pet with superior medical care, we offer diagnostic imaging services to supplement prognosis. Medical imaging employs the use of machinery to give photographic representation of abnormalities or injuries. In performing diagnostic imaging, our veterinarians can provide safe, accurate diagnosis and promptly treat the problem. Reasons for diagnostic imaging
- Assess facial swelling and dental problems
- Detect possible bladder infections
- Determine the location of broken bones or bone fractures
- Evaluate the status of a pet's pregnancy
- Help identify if a pet has heart disease
- Locate foreign bodies that a pet might have swallowed
Our veterinary clinic is dedicated to providing pets with compassionate care. In offering cardiology services, we can better evaluate and treat heart and lung diseases, working towards improving quality of life. Our annual pet health exams enable our staff to detect early indicators of heart disease that could potentially save your pet's life ? just one more reason why an annual check-up is important for your pet's well-being.
Diagnostic imaging is initially used when a disease or condition is suspected. This non-invasive method of obtaining information allows our veterinarians to determine existence, severity, and location of a condition or disease. After diagnosis, our physicians will discuss with you the best plan of action for your pet.
Possible indications of heart disease:
- Coughing that lasts longer than three days.
- Inability or refusal to sleep at night.
- Shortness of breath, wheezing, or rapid breathing.
- Sudden changes in pet behavior and an inclination to isolate themselves.
- Sudden episodes of fainting, or unexplained collapses.
- Swelling in the abdomen.
What do cardiology diagnostics involve?
Diagnostics could involve a variety of different procedures. Upon examining your pet, the veterinarian will decide which method is necessary under the circumstances.
Blood Pressure - Routinely checking blood pressure at pet wellness exams is critical. High blood pressure can cause heart failure.
Blood Tests - Blood tests examine hormone levels. Changes in certain hormones indicate heart failure.
Digital X-rays - X-rays allow the veterinarian to examine the heart, lungs, and bones. From an X-ray, your pet's physician can determine enlargement of the heart or fluid build-up in the lungs. X-rays can also be used to determine placement of pacemakers.
EKGs - An EKG allows the physician to monitor heart rate and rhythm, allowing for detection of abnormalities.
Ultrasound - Ultrasounds let the physician see a 3-dimensional image of the heart and its chambers. From this image, they can observe blood flow and check for any heart murmurs.
Although heart problems are found more often in older pets, these conditions can affect pets at any age. Heart disease is usually a life-threatening condition, but early diagnosis and appropriate therapy can extend your pet's life. If caught soon enough, some forms of heart disease can be cured.
Heart disease can lead to congestive heart failure (CHF), which occurs when the heart can no longer pump blood effectively. If an animal is suffering from CHF, fluid usually accumulates in and around the lungs and sometimes in the abdomen. Congenital heart disease (animals born with a heart problem), valvular heart disease (abnormalities of the heart valves), arrhythmias (rhythm disturbances), and heartworm disease can all lead to CHF.
Call us if your pet starts breathing rapidly or coughing, loses his or her appetite, tires easily, seems weak, or has trouble exercising. We can discover many heart problems during a physical exam. Additional tests, such as an electrocardiogram (ECG), radiographs (x-rays), and ultrasounds, are usually needed to accurately identify the cause of the heart disease or failure.
We understand that having a pet diagnosed with cancer can be emotionally draining and difficult to process. Our veterinary oncologist is able to help our pet cancer patients and their owners understand their diagnosis better and choose a treatment plan that best works for them. Whether you opt for chemotherapy or radiation therapy, we will discuss all benefits and potential side effects associated with each treatment. Our goal is to provide you with valuable information, provide answers to all of your treatment questions, and help guide you through the decision-making process. The following signs are possible indications of cancer:
- Change in shape, size, or texture of existing lumps in pet skin.
- Constant drooling.
- Difficulty urinating or defecating.
- Drainage and foul smell coming out of ears.
- Foul breath.
- Frequent runny nose with or without blood in it.
- Lethargy beyond normal levels.
- New lumps in skin.
- Noticeable change in stride? Limping or sudden change in posture.
- Noticeable increase in water consumption.
- Shifting of teeth.
This minimally invasive procedure allows a veterinarian to see inside a pet's body and, when necessary, take biopsies (tissue samples) without having to perform surgery. Endoscopy is commonly used to examine the inside of the ears, nose, esophagus, colon, bladder, stomach, and other internal organs. Endoscopy can also be used to assist with minimally invasive surgeries and is particularly valuable in retrieving swallowed items.
To perform this procedure, the veterinarian inserts the endoscope (a long tube with a camera at one end) into the area to be examined. Incisions are sometimes required; however, the incisions used for endoscopic procedures are considerably smaller than those used in traditional surgery. This means a much less painful and quicker recovery for your pet.
Endoscopy does require that your pet be placed under anesthesia. As with all such procedures, we follow strict protocols and continually monitor your pet's vital signs to help ensure his or her safety. Please see the descriptions under Anesthesia and Patient Monitoring for more information on what we do to keep your pet safe.
If you have any questions about our endoscopy service or what to expect during your pet's procedure, please don't hesitate to ask.
Losing a pet is a delicate situation, and we understand the difficulty in having to make that final decision. Our dedicated veterinarians are skilled in assessing pain management and do not recommend euthanasia casually. We also make certain that the process of putting your pet to sleep is carried out in a humane manner.
When being euthanized, pet owners are welcome to be in the room as their pet passes, and if they prefer, a pet can be sedated prior to administering euthanasia. The final injection is a chemical that mimics an overdose of anesthesia, allowing your pet to fall into an eternal sleep. As it enters the bloodstream, the chemical targets the brain and heart, first preventing nerves from sensing pain, then gradually stopping the heart from beating.
While the decision to euthanize a pet is heart-wrenching, it is important for a pet owner to consider the pet's suffering before their own. In circumstances where putting your pet to sleep offers them relief from physical anguish, ending misery can be the best decision you can make for your pet.
Common reasons for euthanasia:
- Behavioral problems, namely aggression, which cannot be corrected.
- Illness that would cause suffering if the pet were kept alive.
- Inability to afford involved medical procedures.
- Organ damage that cannot be repaired.
- Euthanizing pets in shelters when homes cannot be found.
- Terminal illness such as cancer.
After putting your pet to sleep, you can decide to take your pet home with you, have your pet cremated, buried from a pet funeral home, or you can opt to leave your pet with the veterinarian. Because saying goodbye is difficult, we recommend having after death plans arranged prior to your visit for euthanasia. No matter what you decide to do, don't feel pressured to choose one option or another; choose the option that is best for you. Some pet owners feel that an urn with their pet's remains helps the grieving process. Others think leaving the pet with the vet is easier for them emotionally. Because your pet has peacefully passed, it is now your decision to do what is best for you.
The mourning process is different for every pet owner. Some only take a couple days for mourning while others take months. It is completely normal to mourn the loss of your pet, and you should never feel obligated to put a time limit on what is the 'right' amount of time.
If you have any questions about the process of putting a pet to sleep, or want to schedule an appointment to see if it would be beneficial for your pet's condition, contact our kind veterinary clinic at your convenience.
Even the most responsible pet owner could leave the garage door open or forget to close the gate, resulting in a lost pet. Microchipping your beloved pet could be the difference between having your pet returned and not being able to find them. While it is estimated that nearly 3 million pets in shelters are euthanized annually, some of those animals are pets whose owners were unable to find them.
- It can help return a lost animal to their proper owner.
- Microchips help animal shelters avoid the unnecessary expense of boarding an animal that belongs to a loving home.
- Microchips provide a permanent method of identifying your pet. If your pet is lost/stolen and its collar is removed, a vet/shelter can still return your pet home.
- Some countries require a microchip that must also be cross-referenced with an up-to-date vaccination record before an animal is allowed to enter the country.
- They can help distinguish the legal owner of a pet when the ownership of the animal is in dispute.
How are pets found?
If you have further questions about pet microchips or would like to schedule an appointment for microchipping, contact our animal clinic.