by harbor21 | Sep 2, 2021 | Dogs, Food, Tips
Convenient location, specialized care, and a well-trained, compassionate staff make us the top choice amongst pet owners. We treat every pet as if they were our very own family pet, and strive to make their stay with us as comfortable and fun-filled as possible. We hope that they will think of our pet boarding facility as a home away from home. We go the extra mile to ensure that all your pet’s needs are met during their stay with us. You can specify their individual needs for services such as medications, a bath, or even a medical procedure, and we will make sure it happens. Whether your pet is here for a day of pampering, as an overnight guest, or for a medical procedure, we keep our facility climate controlled to ensure your pet feels relaxed and comfortable.
Why should I board my pet?
If you are planning to travel overnight for days, weeks, or even a few months, consider boarding your pet during your trip. Your mind will be at peace knowing that your pet is being taken care of in a safe and secure environment.
by harbor21 | Aug 3, 2021 | Tips
Did you know that pet dental health issues and periodontal disease is a growing epidemic? Over 70% of cats and 85% of dogs have dental disease by the age of 3.
By preventing periodontal disease your pet can live a longer, healthier life. Common signs of disease are bad breath, excessive drooling, broken teeth, reluctance to eat or play with toys, and pawing or rubbing of the face. Sneezing and even eye infections can be related to poor oral health. Periodontal disease can lead to tooth decay and gingival infections, spreading bacteria through the bloodstream, eventually damaging major organs such as the liver, kidney, and heart.
- Stage 1– red, swollen gums, plaque on teeth
- Stage 2– bad breath, plaque, and calculus on teeth, reversible damage
- Stage 3– severe plaque and calculus accumulation, bleeding gums, bad breath, permanent damage
- Stage 4– gingivitis, bleeding gums, pus, bad breath, tooth root exposure, tooth loss, permanent damage.
Home Dental Health Routine
Home care for you pets’ dental health is an important first step. Knowing what a healthy mouth looks like will help you notice the early signs of oral diseases in your pet. Examining your pets’ mouth at an early age will teach them to be comfortable with their mouths being handled. Starting home oral care early will lead to a life time of good habits. Brushing your pets’ teeth is just as important as brushing your own. Pet specific toothpaste, soft-bristled brushes, and treats made specifically to combat accumulation of plaque and tartar on your pets’ teeth are made available for you in our in-house pharmacy or can be found on our online pharmacy.
Dental Do’s and Dental Don’ts
- Do begin brushing with a pet toothpaste with your finger, or using a pet finger toothbrush, to get your pet used to having something in his mouth, before working up to a toothbrush specially made for pets.
- Do try to perform dental home care, once daily is best. Brushing is preferred, but on days that you cannot brush then give a dental chew.
- Don’t use human toothpaste on your pet.
- Don’t attempt to clean the inner surface of your pet’s teeth. Your pet’s tongue and saliva clean this surface on its own.
- Don’t consider dental home care as an alternative to full dental cleaning if your pet has more advanced dental disease. Even a Stage 1 dental score needs professional veterinary care to return your pet’s teeth to a healthy condition.
Pet Dental Visits with a PetCare Veterinarian
As part of every wellness visit, it is important that your pet receive an oral exam to assess the health status of his or her mouth. Just like with humans, regular dental cleanings once a year are key to keeping your pet pain free and healthy. Dental x-rays should be done occasionally to detect dental diseases that aren’t visible to the eye. If the dental disease is advanced, anesthetic dental cleaning will be necessary. Pathology below the gum line will be revealed through full mouth x-rays, which is done under anesthesia.
PetCare Animal Hospital is committed to serving Haughton and the surrounding communities and will always provide the most compassionate care possible. We have trained veterinary dentists and a passionate veterinary team who can handle emergencies, wellness exams, routine dental work and everything in between. Call us today, 318-390-7561 to schedule an appointment and check up on your pet’s dental health.
by harbor21 | Aug 3, 2021 | Dogs, Food, Tips
What is K-Laser therapy?
Laser therapy is the use of specific wavelengths of red and near-infrared light to create beneficial therapeutic effects. The power can be modulated and pulsed and has no negative effect on normal tissue.
What can the K-Laser treat?
The K-Laser is a premier FDA-cleared Class IV programmable laser that delivers therapeutic power strong enough to cause healing changes to diseased and damaged tissues, relieving pain and reducing inflammation. Therapeutic applications which have shown promising results are:
- Acute painful muscle, tendon, or joint injuries
- Painful spinal problems (pinches nerves)
- Oral Infections
- Ear Infections
How is the K-Laser different than other laser therapy devices?
Low laser therapy devices are Class III lasers or “cold lasers”. Their power ranges from 5 milliwatts to 500 milliwatts. The K-Laser is a high-powered therapy device adjustable from 100 milliwatts to 6,000 milliwatts allowing for a much wider range of treatment protocols. The power and penetration of the K-Laser system are not attainable with cold laser devices.
What does it feel like to receive K-Laser therapy?
You don’t really feel much. The therapy does not cause any pain or discomfort for the patient and there is no anesthesia required for the procedure. The patient will only experience a slight warming or tingling sensation.
How many treatments are necessary?
Each patient and condition being treated are different, but usually, 6-10 sessions are sufficient to achieve a treatment goal, although positive results are often seen after the first couple of treatments. Each K-Laser treatment only takes from 2 to 10 minutes depending on the size and condition being treated. Some chronic cases may require regularly scheduled boosters after the initial treatment plan.
by harbor21 | Aug 3, 2021 | Food, Tips
Regular wellness physical exams allow our veterinarians to evaluate your pet’s general health and become aware of any health problems before they become serious illnesses. Since your pet cannot vocalize his/her feelings, you must rely on regular physical examinations by a veterinarian and your at-home observations to assess your pet’s health.
Routine blood testing, urinalysis (urine testing) and other tests, including blood pressure, are recommended for all pets in their “senior years.” Your veterinarian may recommend diagnostic blood testing, a urinalysis, and even x-rays for younger pets to establish baseline information, which can detect disease before your pet becomes ill, or can be used for comparison as your pet ages.
How often does my pet need a wellness exam?
Every year for a dog or cat is equivalent to five to seven human years, so it is important that your pet receives a wellness exam at least every year, and more often when they enter their senior years. Many aspects of your pet’s health can change in a short amount of time, so make sure your pet does not miss even one exam!
Similar to people, pets need to visit the veterinarian more often as they get older in order to prevent and treat illnesses that come with age. The American Animal Hospital Association recommends that healthy dogs and cats visit the veterinarian once a year for a complete exam and laboratory testing. Healthy senior dogs and cats should receive a wellness exam and lab testing every six months. Depending on your pet’s age and health, your veterinarian will suggest an appropriate physical examination schedule to help keep your pet in tip-top shape.
What can I expect during my pet’s wellness examination?
Your veterinarian will need a complete history of your pet’s health, so don’t forget to mention any unusual behavior that you have noticed in your pet, including:
- Any coughing or difficulty breathing
- Loose stools, diarrhea and/or vomiting
- Eating more or less than usual
- Excessive drinking or urinating
- Excessive scratching and itchiness
Your veterinarian will also want to know about your pet’s daily behavior, including his diet, how much water he drinks and his exercise routine. For example, your veterinarian may ask:
- Does your pet have trouble getting up in the morning?
- Does your pet show signs of weakness or imbalance?
- Does your pet show an unwillingness to exercise?
- Does your pet show signs of stress or aggravation?
- Does your pet run a risk of exposure to fleas, ticks, heart worms and intestinal parasites?
Getting a thorough history will help your veterinarian develop an individualized treatment and/ or preventative health care plan specifically for your pet.
Usually, at the beginning of the exam, your veterinarian, or a veterinary technician will obtain your pet’s temperature, pulse, respiration (breathing) rate and body weight. If your pet has lost weight since his last physical exam, they may be experiencing the early stages of metabolic disease, such as kidney disease or diabetes. If your pet has gained weight since his last exam, your veterinarian will work with you to develop an appropriate diet and exercise plan to return your pet to a healthier weight. Weight is an important consideration in your pet’s health — an extra two or three pounds could mean the difference between your pet being fit and healthy or obese and at risk.
Your veterinarian may ask if your pet has been shaking their head or scratching at their ears, and if you have noticed an odor coming from your pet’s ears. Your pet’s ear canals protect their inner ear, but can also become a home for infectious bacteria, troublesome yeast, parasites and other foreign objects. Your veterinarian will closely examine your pet’s ears to make sure they are healthy.
Eye examinations often reveal many health issues, including anemia, infections, glaucoma, cataracts, high blood pressure, jaundice, and allergies, in addition to eye injuries and ulcers. Careful observation of the inner structures and outward appearances of the eyes are all part of a proper eye examination.
Assuming your pet will allow it, your veterinarian will inspect your pet’s gums, teeth, tongue and palate (roof of the mouth) for tartar buildup, dental abnormalities, fractures, loose teeth, tumors, infection and other problems. For example, similar to people, a lack of red or pink color in your pet’s gums could signal anemia. Your veterinarian will discuss the importance of regular at-home and professional teeth cleaning to prevent periodontal disease, which can cause bad breath, a painful mouth, and tooth loss.
Heart and Lungs
Your veterinarian will use a stethoscope to listen to your pet’s heart and lungs for early signs of heart and lung disease.
If your pet has not been spayed or neutered, your veterinarian may discuss with you the many health benefits of spaying/neutering. Your veterinarian will check your pet’s reproductive system for any swelling, or abnormal discharge, as well as checking for any breast lumps.
Did you know your pet’s skin is the largest organ of their body and a good gauge of their health? Hair loss and skin changes can indicate a more serious internal disease problem. Your veterinarian will check your pet’s skin and hair for fleas, ticks, other external parasites, as well as signs of allergies, infection, warts, and tumors.
From Head to Toe
Your veterinarian will palpate (feel) your pet’s entire body for abnormalities, including enlarged organs, masses or painful areas, to detect problems with the head, neck, chest, stomach, intestines, kidneys, liver and other organs. Your veterinarian will also examine your pet’s legs and feet and the condition of your pet’s joints, muscles, lymph nodes and lastly the tail, assuming your pet has one.
Your veterinarian may recommend additional testing to diagnose or verify a health problem if she finds any abnormalities during your pet’s thorough examination.
Vaccinations are one of the most important preventive measures you can take for the health of your pet. Dogs can be immunized against distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parainfluenza, parvovirus, coronavirus, bordetella, rabies, Lyme disease, and canine influenza. Cats can be immunized against feline panleukopenia (distemper), rabies, feline rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, chlamydia, and feline leukemia.
How frequently you should have your pet vaccinated against certain diseases depends on many factors, including where your pets lives or will live, so talk to your veterinarian to understand what is recommended for your pet’s unique environment and lifestyle. Do not underestimate the importance of taking your pet to the veterinarian for regular wellness examinations. Someone (probably a veterinarian) once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” These regular examinations will help your pet live a longer and healthier life, so do your part to care for your furry friend!